Posts Tagged ‘compensation’

Liberals Lie On Public Sector Compensation And The Terrifying Crisis America Faces

March 2, 2011

There’s a rash of liberals out there (liberals being quite comparable to a rashes and other nasty conditions) saying that public sector jobs don’t earn any more than the private sector.

And, of course, that you should feel sorry for those poor government union employees in Wisconsin who are in danger of losing their collective bargaining rights and therefore the ability to hold the public hostage for even higher pay.

But, of course, “lying” and “liberal” is more than just an example of alliteration; the two words are also synonyms for one another.

So How Much Do Public Union Workers Really Make?
By John Lott
Published March 01, 2011
| FoxNews.com

President Obama lashed out at Republicans Monday for having “denigrated or vilified” public union employees. Without collective bargaining and the ability to go on strike, he said we wouldn’t be able to attract “the best and the brightest to public service.” Are public employees simply the best and the brightest? Or are we simply lavishing them with much better employment deals than their private counterparts? 

To measure how attractive a job is, economists study how employees vote with their feet — that is, comparing the rate at which different categories of employees voluntarily quit their jobs. 

Over the last six months, private workers have been 3.4 times more likely to quit their jobs than either state and local or federal workers. Indeed, no private industry comes close to the low “quit rate” for government employees. Manufacturing, which has the lowest rate, still faces twice the quit rate as the government. 

Firms compete to hire workers not just through offering good salaries and benefits, but also through working conditions and hours. Firms that offer comparably better deals not only find they have more potential workers lining up to get a job, but once an applicant gets the job, they will want to keep it. 

Some union supporters claim that this low turnover rate actually demonstrates an efficiency of government. How? Because a low turnover means the government saves money since it doesn’t have to retrain replacement workers. But here is the problem: if the saved retraining costs really outweighed the higher salaries and benefit costs, private companies would also volunteer to pay higher compensation. 

It appears to me that unions generally try to ensure that their workers don’t have to work too hard — with mandatory breaks guaranteed and rigid protections over exactly what kind of jobs workers can be asked to do. That is on top of getting paid much more

Take public school teachers. Over 41 percent of state and local public workers are in education. If state and local government costs are going to be reined in, state governments must deal with. By any measure, the government pays public school teachers much more than non-religious private school ones. During the 2007-08 school year, the Department of Education reports that the average public school teacher’s salary, even without their much more generous benefit package, was $49,630, 37 percent higher than the $36,250 earned by private school teachers

As shown in this figure, using data from the Department of Education, public school teachers continue to earn much more money than their private school counterparts. This goes across the board no matter what their level of experience, level of education, age, race, whether they teach in an elementary or secondary school, or where the schools are located. The smallest difference between public and private teacher salaries exists for those with a Ph.D. (about 13%) and the largest difference appears for those who are black or who work in towns (public school teachers make about 57 or 58 percent more). 

It is easy to see how public school teacher salaries increase simply by being on the job longer. From 2 years to 29 years of experience, public school teacher salaries just keep rising relative to private school teachers — going from earning a 29 percent premium during their second to forth years on the job to 49 percent markup when they have been there for 25 to 29 years

So how do public sector unions get away with this? Simply put, they have a kind of monopoly. Parents pay for public education through their property and other taxes — whether they send their kids to public or private schools

Parents must really believe that the private schools are much better than the public ones to be willing to pay the public school taxes and still pay private school tuition on top of that — effectively paying twice for school. In contrast, private schools that kept paying more and more for teachers would quickly find themselves out of business

With all this money at stake, public unions’ reactions to proposals to weaken their power and make them more like federal workers are understandable. But still there are some surprises. On Sunday, AFL-CIO’s head, Richard Trumka, in a television interview refused repeated attempts to answer questions about whether or not it was innappropriate for union activists to compare Wisconsin’s Republican Governor Scott Walker to Hilter and other dictators. 

A couple of weeks ago, Obama told leaders of private companies at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that they had an obligation to hire more workers regardless of whether it meant they would lose money on hiring them. Alas, this is also his attitude towards public spending. 

We’ve got to either end the public sector union monopolies or they will end America.  That is the bottom line.

We are in a crisis that is so giant that it boggles the imagination.  And the professional left, the Democrat Party, the unions and the mainstream media are all doing everything they can to keep you from knowing that your country is about to implode because of public employee benefits.

Take just ONE state, California.  According to a study done by Stanford on public employee pension liabilities:

The study concluded that the state’s unfunded pension liability has topped half a trillion dollars – six times the present state budget.

Put another way, future California taxpayers are going to be on the hook for more than $500 billion simply to make up the difference between the pensions we’ve promised to today’s state workers and the money we’ve invested to pay for them.

That’s tax money that will have to be shelled out before a nickel is spent on the public services of the future.

Or consider this news:

Big US cities could be squeezed by unfunded public pensions as they and counties face a $574 billion funding gap, a study to be released on Tuesday shows.

The gap at the municipal level would be in addition to $3,000 billion in unfunded liabilities already estimated for state-run pensions, according to research from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the University of Rochester.

Basically, while the mainstream media continues to depict public sector union employees as valient stalwarts fighting for the rights of the working class everywhere, what they really are is vindictive eco-terrorists viciously and repeatedly stabbing your children in the eyes and then pissing in your children’s blind and gaping eye sockets.  Because what they are really fighting for isn’t the nonexistent “right of collective bargaining”; what they are fighting for is the “right” to implode America and ensure that your children suffer like no generation of Americans has ever suffered before.

When I say that the Democrat Party which backs this disaster and fights to sustain it until America is a bankrupt banana republic is the party of genuine moral evil and the party of treason, I mean it.

During the next two years, culminating in the 2012 national elections, America has one last chance to survive as a nation.  We either massively elect conservative Republicans who will break the government union stranglehold that even FDR said was “intolerable and unthinkable,” or we go the way of the Dodo bird.

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How Exactly Did Bill Clinton And Rahm Emanuel NOT Violate US Code 600 In Quid Pro Quo Offer To Sestak?

May 28, 2010

First of all, the idea that a former president like Bill Clinton would be the go-between between the White House and Joe Sestak, bearing an offer that amounted to the equivalent of an unpaid Pez dispenser of a position, doesn’t pass the smell test.

I mean, who on earth seriously thinks a former admiral and current Congressman would take an unpaid intern-level position in exchange for running for the US Senate?

How many of the other members of Obama’s intelligence advisory board can you name off the top of your head without Googling it?  ZERO, just like Obama’s nickname, that’s how many.

Sestak waited until the White House announced their “narrative” in this corruption before telling his own version so they could get their stories straight.  Joe Sestak’s brother, who is also Joe Sestak’s campaign manager, gets a phone call to better hone the background details of the White House’s “narrative.”  Bill Clinton visits the White House yesterday to receive the details of HIS role in the narrative.

And then the “narrative” gets released to the public on the Friday before the Memorial Day recess and weekend.

Nothing slimy there, folks.

Bottom line: Joe Sestak knows if he’s the guy who brings down the Obama administration, that’s it for his liberal Democrat career; he also knows that he needs Obama and the DNC to help back, fund, and support his campaign if he’s going to have any chance of winning going forward.  So he’s basically been saying, “I’m not going to say another word about the White House’s role until they tell me what they want me to say they said.”

Every single player in this disgrace of our national political system has an incentive to lie.

Charles Krauthammer pointed this out today: The documents released by the White House indicate a two month effort to persuade Sestak to drop out of the Senate primary against Arlen Specter.  Unless the phone call between Clinton and Sestak lasted something like 86,400 minutes, there were other contacts and other offers.  Let’s hear about all those, too.

Like I’ve already stated, I have a very hard time believing that the “job” Joe Sestak says the White House offered him in exchange for withdrawing from the Senate race was nothing but a trivial unpaid advisory position.  Nevertheless, even if that’s what it was, it nevertheless WAS a “position.”

So here’s the language of US Code 600:

Whoever, directly or indirectly, promises any employment,
position, compensation, contract, appointment, or other benefit,
provided for or made possible in whole or in part by any Act of
Congress, or any special consideration in obtaining any such
benefit, to any person as consideration, favor, or reward for any
political activity or for the support of or opposition to any
candidate or any political party in connection with any general or
special election to any political office, or in connection with any
primary election or political convention or caucus held to select
candidates for any political office, shall be fined under this
title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

How was that code not violated???  “Any position.”  That would encompass even the unpaid position on the president’s intelligence advisory board.  Joe Sestak had repeatedly said that he was offered a “job” (which generally involves compensation) in exchange for dropping out of the Senate race so Obama’s guy could win.  That’s a quid pro quo exchange, and it is a clear violation of the law.

Is this going away?

When told about Clinton’s involvement, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), who has been leading the charge for more details on the allegation, said, “This is punishable by prison. This is a felony.”

I guess not.

Another question, given the fact that Obama supporters are citing cases involving Bill Clinton and alleging (without any evidence) that Bush did this crap too: Barack Obama promised he’d be a “new politician” who would change the nature of Washington.  How has he not just flat-out lied about that in the most cynical way?

One way or another, the law was broken, any claim to the integrity of the Democrat political machine has been demolished, and the Obama White House has been verified to be more Nixonian than “ethical.”

As a final matter, it needs to be pointed out that this corrupt White House now has a PATTERN OF CORRUPTION:

Sestak-gate: White House Offered Romanoff Job, Too
Wednesday, 26 May 2010 08:18 PM
By Jim Meyers

Allegations that the White House offered Joe Sestak a job in exchange for dropping out of the Pennsylvania Senate race echo an earlier report of a job offer to candidate Andrew Romanoff in Colorado.

On Sept. 27, 2009, the Denver Post reported that the Obama administration offered Senate candidate Romanoff a position if he canceled plans to run for the Democratic nomination against incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet.

The paper said the job offer, which specified particular jobs, reportedly was delivered by Jim Messina, Obama’s deputy chief of staff. One position the Post cited was a job at USAID, the foreign aid agency.

And, oh, yeah, that one DEFINITELY violates US Code 600 and a bunch of other laws.  Not that the offer to Joe Sestak didn’t, too.

Who would have ever thought we’d see Chicago-style politics from Barack Obama?

Question: what sounds better, “Barack Hussein Nixon” or “Richard Milhous Hussein”?

The REAL Cause of the Housing Finance Meltdown

September 22, 2008

What’s the biggest problem today in our financial market?  What caused this disaster?  Was it mismanagement?  Was it lack of regulations?  Was it the “other” political party?

Let me just state it for the record: the problem was greed, pure and simple.

We can see a level of shocking greed in our elite business and investment circles merely by looking at the disparity between worker salary and CEO compensation.  In the “better days” of the 1960s, the average CEO earned around 40 times what the average worker earned.  Today the average CEO makes over 500 times what the average worker earns.  And the gap is widening, year by year.

Why has this happened?  The pro-business side argue that this more than twelve-fold increase of CEO pay relative to the average worker can be attributed to proportionately similar increases in market capitalization of large US companies over the years.  The pro-labor side argues that the decline of unionization has been the primary cause of skyrocketing executive pay.  But again, you can’t just play with numbers and justify this massive disparity in compensation; nor can you claim that unionization would be our savior (particularly in a global economy, where increased unionization of labor would merely result in the increased “outsourcing” of jobs).

And the problem has persisted – and continued to dramatically increase – through periods of dominance of both political parties.

Let me say it again: the problem is rampant, cancerous greed.

And this greed does not merely exist at the top of the corporate and financial food chains.  It is in the masses of Americans who wanted more than their means could provide for, who took out loans they could never hope to repay.

And why has greed become such an enormous problem in American life?

Because our ruling elites have actively discouraged religion for decades, and we are eating the bitter fruit of cultural relativism and practical atheism.

What happens when we discourage belief in a Creator God – who created man in His own image, and holds us morally accountable as His image bearers, and begin to inculcate Darwinism in its place?  We get social Darwinism.  And in social Darwinism, the strong eat the weak, and the rich most assuredly devour the poor.  And why shouldn’t they?  Are they not merely living by the obvious standards of the law of the jungle?  Why not be predatory carnivores?  Isn’t that what we ultimately are?

In the early 1960s, during the Warren era of the Supreme Court, we began to see the Establishment Clause interpreted in a more and more secular humanist and blatantly anti-religious manner.  In the case of the Ten Commandments, it was decided that, “If the posted copies of the Ten Commandments are to have any effect at all, it will be to induce the schoolchildren to read, meditate upon, perhaps to venerate and obey, the Commandments.”  And we couldn’t have any of that, could we?

What happens when you divorce religion and morality from society and from public life?  The thought of our founding fathers, the thought of the men who framed and wrote our laws, and the thought of the men who contemplated what made our culture great, continues to teach us if we will but listen:

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports…In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens…”
– George Washington, Farewell Address, Sept 17, 1796

“…And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion…reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”
– George Washington, Farewell Address, Sept 17, 1796

“No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand, which conducts in the affairs of men more than the people of the United States. Every step, by which they have been advanced to the character of an independent nation, seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency.”
– George Washington“Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand.”
– John Adams, Letter to Zabdiel Adams, Philadelphia, June 21, 1776

“We have no government armed in power capable of contending in human passions unbridled by morality and religion…  Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
– John Adams, Address to the Officers of the Massachusetts Militia, 1798

“Religion and good morals are the only solid foundations of public liberty and happiness.”
– Samuel Adams, Letter to John Trumbull, October 16, 1778

“The great pillars of all government and of social life [are] virtue, morality, and religion. This is the armor…and this alone, that renders us invincible.”
– Patrick Henry, Letter to Archibald Blair, January 8, 1789

“And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God?” -Thomas Jefferson in “Notes on Virginia”

“Yes, we did produce a near perfect Republic. But will they keep it, or will they, in the enjoyment of plenty, lose the memory of freedom? Material abundance without character is the surest way to destruction.”
– Thomas Jefferson

“Yes, we did produce a near perfect Republic. But will they keep it, or will they, in the enjoyment of plenty, lose the memory of freedom? Material abundance without character is the surest way to destruction.”
– Thomas Jefferson”Let divines and philosophers, statesmen and patriots, unite their endeavors to renovate the age, by impressing the minds of men with the importance of educating their little boys and girls, of inculcating in the minds of youth the fear and love of the Deity…in short of leading them in the study and practice of the exalted virtues of the Christian system.”  – Samuel Adams, 1790

Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the
happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever by encouraged.
– Northwest Ordinance, Article III, July 13, 1787

“…[O]nly a virtuous people are capable of freedom.  As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.”
– Benjamin Franklin, Letter to Messrs. The Abbes Chalut and Arnaud, April 17, 1787

“The only foundation for…a republic is to be laid in Religion.”
– Benjamin Rush, signer of the Declaration of Independence and member of the Continental Congress

“The only foundation for…a republic is to be laid in Religion. Without this there can be no virtue, and without virtue there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments.”
– Benjamin Rush, “Essays, Literary, Moral and Philosophical,” 1798

“In contemplating the political institutions of the United States, I lament that we waste
so much time and money in punishing crimes, and take so little pains to prevent them. We profess to be republicans and yet we neglect the only means of establishing and perpetuating our republican forms of government. That is, the universal education of our youth in the principles of Christianity by the means of the Bible.”
– Benjamin Rush, 1798

…I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth—that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that ‘except the Lord build the House, they labor in vain that build it.’ I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better, than the Builders of Babel…
– Benjamin Franklin

We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages…I therefore beg leave to move—that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business…”
– Benjamin Franklin, Constitutional Convention, June 28, 1787

“…how has it happened, Sir, that we have not hitherto once thought of humbly appealing to the Father of lights to illuminate our understandings? In the beginning of the contest with Great Britain, when we were sensible to danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard and they were graciously answered… And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we imagine that we no longer need his assistance?…
– Benjamin Franklin, Constitutional Convention

“Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is Divine…Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistants.” Foundations Reappear
– James Wilson, “Of the General Principles of Law and Obligation,” U.S. Supreme Court Justice Signed U.S. Constitution

“Without morals, a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion…are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments.”
– Charles Carroll Letter to James McHenry, November 4, 1800.  Signer of the Declaration of Independence and member of the Continental Congress

“To preserve the government we must also preserve morals. Morality rests on religion; if you
destroy the foundation, the superstructure must fall. When the public mind becomes vitiated
and corrupt, laws are a nullity and constitutions are waste paper.”
– Daniel Webster, 4th of July, 1800, Oration at Hanover, N.H.

“In my view, the Christian Religion is the most important and one of the first things in which all children, under a free government, ought to be instructed…no truth is more evident to my mind than that the Christian Religion must be the basis of any government intended to secure the rights and privileges of a free people.”
– Noah Webster, Reply to David McClure, Oct. 25, 1836

“Religion is the only solid basis of good morals; therefore education should teach the precepts of religion, and the duties of man towards God.”
– Gouverneur Morris, 1832

“…as man depends absolutely upon his Maker for everything, it is necessary that he should,
in all points, conform to his Maker’s will. This will of his Maker is called the law of nature…This law of nature…dictated by God himself, is of course superior in obligation to any other. It is binding over all the globe, in all countries, and at all times: no human laws are of any validity if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid derive all their force, and all their authority…from this original.”
– William Blackstone, “Commentaries on the Law,” 1723-1780

“Upon these two foundations, the law of nature and the law of revelation, depend all human laws; that is to say, no human laws should be suffered to contradict these.”
– William Blackstone 1723-1780, “Commentaries on the Law,” 1723-1780

“…the moral principles and precepts contained in the Scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws…  All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising
or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.”
– Noah Webster, “History of the United States,” 1833

“It is alleged by men of loose principles, or defective views of the subject, that religion and morality are not necessary or important qualifications for political stations.  But the Scriptures teach a different doctrine. They direct that rulers should be men who rule in the fear of God, able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness…”
– Noah Webster, “Value of the Bible,” 1834, #302

“The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and liberty so intimately in their minds that it is impossible to make them conceive one without the other.”
– Alexis de Toqueville, “Democracy in America”

“The religious atmosphere of the country was the first thing that struck me upon my arrival in the U.S. In France, I had seen the spirits of religion and freedom almost always marching in opposite directions, in America, I found them intimately linked together and joined and reigned over the same land…
– Alexis de Tocqueville, “Democracy in America”

Religion should therefore be considered as the first of their political institutions. From the start, politics and religion have agreed and have not since ceased to do so.”
– Alexis de Tocqueville, “Democracy in America”

“We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God…
– Abraham Lincoln, Proclamation for a National Day of Fasting, Humiliation & Prayer, April 30, 1863

…We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us…and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own…
– Abraham Lincoln, Proclamation for a National Day of Fasting, 1863

…Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us! It behooves us, then to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.”
– Abraham Lincoln, Proclamation for a National Day of Fasting, 1863

… that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, November 19, 1863

Our founding fathers knew full well that religion and morality were inseparable to good governance and to the well-being of a democratic society.  If you throw out God and religion, eventually morality and ethics will likewise go down the drain.  And then you will see more and more greed, worse and worse behavior, more and more crime, which in turn will necessitate more and more regulations and laws and more and more oppressive government in order to restrain an increasingly amoral and frankly bad people.

It should come as no surprise that our society, and frankly our country, began to unravel beginning in the early 1960s, as a series of sweeping policies from unelected secular humanistic judges and liberal politicians began to dramatically alter society.

We’re paying dearly for the amorality that has been increasingly encroaching upon our society.  And we will continue to reap the whirlwind until – like Lincoln – we realize that we have forgotten God.

It’s not yet too late to remember Him.  But I fear that we are on the verge of reaching a tipping point, where the culture just begins to spiral inexorably downward, as though driven by some giant reciprocating engine whose every stroke takes us farther and farther downward into a chaos from which we can never emerge.