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Thu Jul 12, 2012, 08:19 AM

REPORT: Scott Walker, Right-Wing “Think Tanks” creating another crisis – Public Employee Pensions

http://bdgrdemocracy.wordpress.com/2012/07/11/report-scott-walker-right-wing-think-tanks-creating-another-crisis-public-employee-pensions/

Recent reports on the fiscal state of the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) have been consistent. The Pew Research Center rated Wisconsin a “solid performer” in employee pension funds. The Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) Study submitted under Act 32 on June 30 reported on the fiscal soundness of the fund as well as reforming aspects of the program, including allowing employees to opt into 401(k) style investment. This report was clear in its assessment of the WRS:

Given the current financial health and unique risk-sharing features of the WRS, neither an optional Defined Contribution plan nor an opt-out of employee contributions should be implemented in Wisconsin at this time.

Despite these two independent reports reaching the same conclusion; right-wing think tanks and corporate conservatives like Scott Walker are colluding to create a “crisis” of unfunded liability and debt. This crisis will be used (much like Walker’s $3.6 Billion deficit lie) to push reform of a successful program which needs no reform, is fully funded, and working. The November election outcome will decide if political will exists to push legislative pension reform in Wisconsin. If successful, corporate conservatives will decimate one of the most beneficial, responsible public pension programs in the world – selling it off to 401(k) investments companies like TIAA-CREF, which stand to profit greatly from “reform.”

Public Sector, Incorporated is a think-tank project of another right-wing think tank, the Manhattan Institute (MI). The Manhattan Institute receives millions of dollars in funding from 27 of the most conservative foundations in the world, including Koch Foundation, Olin Foundation, Bradley Foundation, and Scaife Foundation). Money from these endowments funds research and writing at Public Sector, Inc., to promote reform of public sector pensions and benefits plans.

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Reply REPORT: Scott Walker, Right-Wing “Think Tanks” creating another crisis – Public Employee Pensions (Original post)
hue Jul 2012 OP
Scuba Jul 2012 #1
hue Jul 2012 #3
a kennedy Jul 2012 #2
Frank_Keegan Jul 2012 #4
Goblinmonger Jul 2012 #5
Paulie Jul 2012 #6
PETRUS Jul 2012 #7

Response to hue (Original post)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 08:41 AM

1. No question that Walker's masters want to steal the pensions of our State workers....

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Response to Scuba (Reply #1)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 11:21 AM

3. "Walker's masters" really don't need the pension money, it's just class warfare!

The Koch Bros.' (for example) personal income is approx. $600,000./HR That's not including many other sources of income.
Those puppet masters/sickos get their kicks from controlling the worker bees!

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Response to hue (Original post)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 09:53 AM

2. D*mn them all to h*ll......

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Response to hue (Original post)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 03:51 PM

4. The numbers are the numbers; reality is reality

 

Wisconsin may be better off than any other state, but its pension fund is in trouble. In reality it is about 60 percent funded, optimistically. The average Wisconsin household has to pay about $1,500 every year for 30 years in extra taxes -- above and beyond any rate increases and revenue increases from economic growth -- just to pay off pension debt. For that, citizens will receive no government benefits or services of any kind. That extraordinary tax will pay no public employees. It is the same as making a mortgage payment every month on a house you are not allowed to live in. All of that is the best-case outcome if there never is another market downturn and pension fund investments earn the necessary returns. By the way, earning those returns requires crushing rank-and-file private sector workers not only in America, but all over the world. Corporate profits pay public pensions, and public pensions are the most powerful, heartless stockholders in the world, though they are very generous in handing out your money in fees to brokers, placement agents and other insiders even when investments tank. Why don't you take a look at who is getting the vigorish off your pension investments. As for conspiracy, there may be some statistical correlation between right wingers and people who can do arithmetic, but that doesn't change the reality of the arithmetic. And if pension warnings are part of some vast right wing conspiracy, the Harvard Kennedy School is in on it. Read some objective, credible studies. Read em and weep. Links are here:
http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/blog/detail/wisconsin-proves-the-lie-of-pew-pension-numbers

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Response to Frank_Keegan (Reply #4)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 04:18 PM

5. Um, bull.

Wisconsin's public employees pension fund is one of the top rated in the country and world. It is just fine and fully funded. Take your right-wing talking points elsewhere.

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Response to Frank_Keegan (Reply #4)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 04:47 PM

6. "State budget solutions" partners with ALEC

So we know it's all bat squeeze.

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Response to Frank_Keegan (Reply #4)

Thu Jul 12, 2012, 06:23 PM

7. Arithmetic

Arithmetic means nothing if you don't know what numbers to use. How about some context? Nationally, the unfunded state and local pension liabilities amount to about 3/10ths of one percent of projected household income over the pertinent time period. This isn't even remotely close to a crisis. We should keep our promises and meet our obligations to public employees.

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