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nichomachus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:28 PM
Original message
Postal service to stop paying into employee pension fund
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-22/u-s-postal-ser...

The U.S. Postal Service, facing insolvency without approval to delay a $5.5 billion payment for worker health benefits, will suspend contributions to an employee retirement account to save $800 million this year.

The Postal Service will stop paying employer contributions to the defined-benefit Federal Employees Retirement System, which covers about 85 percent of career postal workers, it said today in an e-mailed statement. The $115 million payment, made every other week, will stop on June 24, the statement said.

Suspending payments to the retirement account will help conserve cash and preserve liquidity, the statement said. The agency estimates it has overpaid by $6.9 billion and has asked Congress to pass legislation to return that money.
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Dept of Beer Donating Member (957 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
1. Perhaps they would have cash if they were folded into the Pentagon or NSA accounts.
Edited on Wed Jun-22-11 01:34 PM by Dept of Beer
Mail carriers could then carry the XM16E1 without worry for their safety and bomb things when not delivering coupon books.
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
2. I'm sure the people who have worked there for most of their adult lives will appreciate that
:(
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:49 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. they DO NOT pay into Social Security
So I guess it is welcome to life in the gutter!
:argh: :argh: :argh:

May America RIP!

:kick:

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kelly1mm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. The vast majority, all those hired after 1982, do pay into social security.
There are two main federal retiree programs, CERS (pre 1982) and FERS (post 1982). The CERS people were allowed to enter FERS when the switch over happened and those with not alot of time in did switch over so the number of CERS retirees is droping fast. All FERS retirement system employees pay into SS like private sector employees.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:22 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. my late brother went to work for them in 1979
I guess he was a fool for wanting to keep what he agreed to when he went to work for them. I don't give a damn about how it is "now". What about those that are nearing retirement that never took the bait? They are screwed is the answer. SCREWED!
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kelly1mm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 04:32 PM
Response to Reply #10
24. Your original post implied that postal employees don't pay SS. I was
simply clarifying that the vast majority do pay into SS. That is all. The pension fund has a surplus of 6.9 billion dollars as of now according to the linked article.
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LiberalEsto Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:35 PM
Response to Original message
3. How much do the top execs get paid?
They probably rake in enough pay and other compensation to easily make up any deficit.
As usual, the big shots cause the problem, and the workers get screwed.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
4. Where is Omaha Steve when we need him ...
Edited on Wed Jun-22-11 01:55 PM by CountAllVotes
My late brother worked for the Post Office since he was 19 years old. He died at a young age of cancer sadly. He'd be >55 years old if he was still alive. He worked and worked and worked, weekends, holidays, whatever. He was Shop Foreman for the postal employees in the region he worked in. This would have KILLED HIM! I've noted all of these pension plans that people in this age group (boomers) are disappearing. My brother did not pay into Social Security being this is their retirement plan, or was their retirement plan. They'll end up with nothing and likely little if any Social Security benefits! Where the hell is the worker's money? Ben cough it up you fucker!

These postal employees have bargaining rights and are unionized!

:mad: :mad: :mad: :argh: !!!!!!!!!!!!

ON EDIT: YOU (yes YOU) are next!

They are planning to take over the Federal workers pension system now and old Federal workers that have paid only into FERP are indeed next! These same workers are the ones bashed and hated everywhere now. Plan in place; mission accomplished! They too will soon have no pension system for they are not unionized at all, only a shell of a union is what they have that is virtually powerless. And to think, everyone seems to think this same group "has it all". Yeah, they "have it all" alright, including getting screwed with nothing to show for the screwing.

I cry RAPE!

:kick:

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dixiegrrrrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #4
13. You are 100% correct, Geithner has already announced the Federal pension halt.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:48 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. this plan has been in place since 1985
Ronnie baby promised to do it and he did.

I'd spit on the fucker's grave if it was nearby because Ronnie done it.

I left Federal service when he was re-elected as I could see the writing on the wall in 1985 and found employment elsewhere and cashed out what pension monies I could get from what was called "FERP" at the time. Others hung around and are still there and are probably about to retire. They were "lifers" - spent their entire lives working for the Federal government working for a promised retirement that was likely rather pitiful for most but "secure". Secure my ass!

Sad day for America, that is all I can say. :cry:

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dixiegrrrrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:53 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Someone who is retired from the Postal Service told me this just now :
"I am under the old Civil Service Retirement System. Which isn't even offered by the Postal Service and is run directly by the Feds under the Office of Management and Budget and isn't part of the Postal Service. About 10 years before I retired they offered the old-timers a chance to switch over to FERS. Nobody in their right mind took the offer. "

Looks not all of the Postal System current retirees will get screwed. At least not by this plan.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:09 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. yeah but what about those like my brother
Still working away and not paying into this? They are screwed is how I see it.

The older boomers got out and got their money while the younger ones are still busting their butts thinking they have a secure jobs/benefits ...
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dixiegrrrrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:35 PM
Response to Reply #16
21. If I am reading correctly, the employee still is paying into the system
but the employer matching is now NOT paying, ?????

Plus the USPS is not paying into the outgoing payments for the retired?

ANYONE paying INTO a "forced" pension system is pretty much screwed, IMHO.
If it were I, my first step would be to see how the hell I could get my money out.
Usually there are "loans" and some allowable reasons for getting some money out.
then I would find out how I could stop paying in.
Again, let me be clear I am talking about the FERS part, I have no idea how the Civil Service system is working, but I do know that
across the board, one way or the other, the banks and the Treasury are grabbing as much pension money as they can.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:37 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. they were smart and changed the law
Edited on Wed Jun-22-11 03:45 PM by CountAllVotes
With the Federal system you can still get your money out if you quit BUT you must be 65 years old before you can get it! Before Reagun, you could get all of it and do what you wanted to do with it. In my case it was about $6,000.00 for 10 years of working/contributing. I blew at least half of that (invincible at the age of 29 I was) and put the other half in an IRA which I still have. *whew*

My case is one example of why privatization of Social Security is a poor idea at best. Many people that are young don't think they will ever retire. They get the money, buy a new car and that is the end of the money; nothing left for retirement being one is invincible and why worry about it when you are 29 years old? I could have cared less really, I know that much.

How is that for F U C K E D?
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PufPuf23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 04:20 PM
Response to Reply #14
23. I was a Fed from 1969 to 1986 and permanant under the old retirement
Edited on Wed Jun-22-11 04:23 PM by PufPuf23
system from 1973 to January 1986, but resigned and cashed out in 1986. There are Feds that were offered and took pre-mature retirement (pre-age 55 or 50, if LE or fireman) at full scale and continued health plus on-call consultant opportunities. I live in the town where I started and there are people that are older than me that have retired after spending their entire career here in technical series (hired in 1970s under old Fed retirement system) despite the fact they had BS degrees where they were qualified for professional/management positions. I can laugh at myself as I was the professional manager that hired them in my late 20s post university and now live again in my home town 30 years past.

I was given leave from my tech series to go to University age 21 (and had a detailed by agency PT Fed Job at the Land Grant University associated Fed Research Station). I had started the Feds at 16 to rebel from my Dad (to avoid another summer rock crushing, logging road building, and alfalfa/cows to be a fuck'n piss fir willy) under Nixon's Youth Opportuntity Corp. I even took a cut in pay from $2.00 to $1.65 an hour and traded 6 day 10 hour day weeks for 5 day and 5 AM to 6 PM for 6 AM to 2:30 PM.

Ironic to me when I was my Dad's Executor I had his financials. Dad paid members of the Operating Engineer's (Heavy Equipment Operators) Union (he was a member and that is where my family had health insurance including when I was at University) $3.50 an hour plus 1.5 OT and other laborers (like me) $2.00/hour wo/benefits but OT in 1965-1969. I was under my Dad's Union Health Care but also techically an OSHA violation. My Dad had other businesses but health care was from the Union and he was faithful and an FDR Democrat that turned in old age Reagan Democrat (he turned 70 in 1980 and had same hair style as Reagan and liked to argue with me and thought Cal a hippy school).

I despise Reagan even though he was only a stupid fool and tool. He was Governator when I started at Cal as an undergrad but my diploma is signed by Jerry Brown. The Fed agency I worked for sent me to Grad school as a GS-9 and I had to sign a contract regarding term of employment. I stated my plans to resign during the Reagan Administration that made a mockery of law and essentially gave away public assets. I set quit date on the contract date regarding post-grad paid education paid for while on professional grade, salary, and benefits. I got an analysis from CSC or OPM (don't recall name of agency then) that said wise to cashout because of my long time to age 55 retirement relative to age accumulation. I earned a Cal MBA with that retirement, a $5000 student loan to buy my first pc and software, and some consulting where I could earn in a weekend for investment banks that I did in a month as a Fed (with a dying and unfortunate skill that played on my innocence and awe in the famous people I was working with as a seeing-eye dog).

My Dad was an 8th grade grad in an extremely rural tiny town in Indian country. I live there now. I went to 1/2 of 1st grade back in 50s in the same two-room elementary that may Dad graduated 8th grade in 1925 before I was farmed out to relatives or boarding schools in the SF Bay Area 59-70.

Aside: How many at DU are aware of Sierra-Pacific Industries and Red Emmerson? Hint: He is the 2nd largest private landowner in USA to Ted Turner but IMHbutinformedO would have gone bankrupt in the 1980s if not for Reagan.

Aside: How many Indians at DU want to discuss the Cobell vs Salazar settlement?


Edit: I never paid into Social Security the entire time I was a Fed because I was in old retirement system.
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canoeist52 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:02 PM
Response to Original message
6. Doing my part to keep the United States Postal Service running
1. Keeping the junk mail coming -no opting out of mail.

2. No paperless billing for me -love me some tasty stamps.

3. I'm sending every bank and insurance solicitation return envelope marked "no postage necessary" back to the company empty or filled with your favorite progressive stuffers.

This counts as activism - Make the banks and Insurance companies pay the postage.

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AngryAmish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
7. Well isn't this going to be a shtstorm
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Horse with no Name Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:20 PM
Response to Original message
9. How can they do this without their union reps??
This country sucks.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. the postal union is not a strong union
They have no right to strike which is why this is a powerless union. It too is a joke. I always thought it was a joke personally but I dared not tell my late brother this. He'd have had a fit.

He was proud to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, both union workers their entire lives.
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:19 PM
Response to Reply #11
17. We didn't have the right to strike in 1970, weren't even recognized, but we struck anyway.
They should do so again.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._postal_strike_of_1970

At the time, postal workers were not permitted by law to engage in collective bargaining. Striking postal workers felt wages were very low, benefits poor and working conditions unhealthy and unsafe. The U.S. Post Office Department's management was outdated and, according to workers, haphazard. Informal attempts by workers to obtain higher pay and better working conditions had proven fruitless.
The strike

The strike began on March 18, 1970. More than 210,000 United States Post Office Department workers were eventually involved, although initially the strike affected only workers in New York City.

President Nixon appeared on national television and ordered the employees back to work, but his address only stiffened the resolve of the existing strikers and angered workers in another 671 locations in other cities into walking out as well. Workers in other government agencies also announced they would strike if Nixon pursued legal action against the postal employees.

The strike crippled the nation's mail system, disrupting delivery of pension and welfare checks, tax refunds, census forms, and draft notices. Businesses hired planes and trucks to deliver publications and letters.

Nixon spoke to the nation again on March 25 and ordered 24 000 military personnel forces to begin distributing the mail. Operation Graphic Hand had at its peak more than 18 500 military personnel assigned to 17 New York post offices, from regular Army, National Guard, Army Reserve, Air National Guard and Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps Reserve.<1>

Negotiations, in which United States Secretary of Labor William Usery, Jr. played a key role, resolved the postal strike in just two weeks.
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CountAllVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:26 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. they should do it again IMO
Maybe that will wake the awholes up!

STRIKE NOW!
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:34 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. We were told at the time that we would all lose our jobs.
We struck. For the most part it was the strikes in the major hubs that won it. Nixon, laughably, tried to bring in troops to sort the mail. A total flop. The unions didn't back the strike but ended up doing the negotiating and getting recognition.

The unions are petrified of a strike because the union bosses would be the ones tossed in jail if they called one. About, the only way for it to happen is like it did in '70. Wildcat in the major cities. The smaller cities/towns don't really count because if the cities go out, there will be no mail for the smaller cities to sort or deliver.
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dixiegrrrrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 04:48 PM
Response to Reply #19
25. Canada postal system is on strike.
tho I am unclear as to the exact issues.
something about their government wanting to kill their union, I think...emphasis on "I think."
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RufusTFirefly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 02:26 PM
Response to Original message
12. A sad K and R. n/t
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Leontius Donating Member (380 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-22-11 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
20. If, and it is a big if, they have overpaid by $6.9 billion
then stopping payments for 9 years would not even affect retirees at all.
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