This blog is for discussing issues in our complex global economy.
Public Employee Unions Are Sinking California
Another great article about our Great state of California. How many people retire at the age of 50 “with a pension that equals 90% of their final year’s pay.”? (that most likely is more than 100k a year?) This doesn’t talk about the health insurance, and other benefits these individuals and their families are receiving…all at a cost to the taxpayers.
Look at the teachers union as a great example of why our state and education system have no money, and are in such bad shape. Our education system grants tenure, and then has almost no chance of firing or removing bad teachers, teachers who give up and just collect their check, teachers who don’t care teachers who have classes that show no improvement, etc. Why? Because the teachers union protects these teachers, while they leave the new teachers who don’t have tenure out to get slaughtered. Meanwhile, who is getting paid more? Who has a more recent education, and is hungry to make a difference in the classroom with new energy and ideas? The teacher without tenure. Seems the roles should be reveresed.
I do not read enough news papers or spend time listening to the news to understand the full crisis and reasons for the recession that has taken over America the past few years, but the article Public Employee Unions are Sinking California, written by Steven Greenhut, makes valid points. California is in great dept with huge unemployment rate, there is not much the government can do besides tax, and California union workers have over paid pension. So what are they doing to fix it? Anyone with the power to lower retirement funds probably has a huge retirement pension themselves. I think it is very unlikely that anyone would step up to lower their own pension for the good of the state and all other budgets. If I had money I would keep it.
First of all Logan is on point with his comment! I enjoyed it very much.
The same thing is one of the main reasons behind the bankrupcy of Japan Airlines. Pilot Unions made it impossible for JAL to make any money for the airline to stay afloat. Last year JAL pensions were finally being considered for cuts because they were so desperate. Because they waited too long to consider these cuts in fear of upsetting people, they are now forced to cut even more in the light of bankrupcy and the unionized workers are no longer protected. Now the changes that need to be made can start happening because of the fall of the unions. The same could be said for the state of California. Yes it’s going to hurt, but if the appropriate steps are not taken soon to make a more realistic plan then there is a chance that no amount of cutting will save the State and pension cuts will be a fact of life, probably larger ones than if they had renegotiated this type of thing before. It’s time policy is passed to do what is right by the financial health of the state, which will benefit the whole, instead of doing right by the powerful, unrealistic demands of the employee Unions in order not to piss them off. If the State goes down, we are all going down at some point.
I have been undecided on how I feel unions effect our economy, but the more and more I see of how the power of unions work, the more I think a group of people should’t be able to have that kind of power. Without some type of regulation, people take as much as they possibly can, even at the expense of others.
if you do some simple math after reading this intriguing article only 7% of union employees recieve a pension of over 100k a year. Unions give many americans job security and according to the AFL-CIO’s study of job tenure and occupational mobility, 48% of union workers have had the same employer for 10 or more years while nonunion workers had a much smaller number of around 22%. Unions have many benefits for our country, but to help our economy i do believe that some of these benefits need to be reevaluated. Willie Brown, former Assembly Speaker, i believe hit the nail on the head when he said, “civil servants were paid less than private sector workers in exchange for an understanding that they had job security for life.”, maybe we do need to make a change, obviously what we are doing now with our state budget isnt working, maybe we can decrease the pension plans of the 7% of workers that recieve over 100k a year by possibly putting a cap on pensions. Maybe we can implement a two teir retirement system, there are many options out there to help us recover from this economic crisis we face in California we just have to decide which option would be most beneficial and at the same time be just towards union workers.
Public employees benefit packages must be reevaluated. How Can the pension cost for public employees increased 2000% when the state revenues only increased 24% for the same period. It isn’t too hard to do the math and figure it out that public employee pension will bankrupt the State. The state will never get out of bankruptcy if this is not taken care soon.
It doesn’t look like we will ever get out of this crisis. When I pick up the paper I read articles of the overspending in the Government so who allows them to spend so lavishingly while the schools and other programs suffer. Their needs to be a re-structuring of our state offices. It seems that the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing. It amazes my why it takes so long to see where all the money is going. With all the budget cuts and people who are retired they again want to make the retiree’s responsible for what is going on now. Whenever you budget you need to look into the future and keep in mind crisis may happen and plan accordingly.
Providing this type of benefits is completely unrealistic due to the current economic struggles that the state, and most of its residents, is facing. The only solution I can think of is to increase the retirement age of these union workers or to lower their benefits, if not both. In the future there may not be enough Social Security benefits for anyone, and that time will come even sooner if we keep providing benefits that we really can’t afford.
The sad thing about this is that there is no way to please the unions and maintain a positive economy. How can the state up the retirement age when there is already no money for retirement for people in our generation? This is something that will save the economy but it will not be beneficial to those who are set to retire when the social security fund runs out. Like Logan said, teachers who have tenure no longer have the drive to continue to teach for the benefit of learning, but purely for the purpose of a paycheck. Therefore teacher unions cease to have active teachers who truly care about the pure education of students.
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