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U.S. loves cops and firefighters - but not their pensions

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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-29-12 01:54 AM
Original message
U.S. loves cops and firefighters - but not their pensions
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/29/us-usa-pensio...

It's like the military.

We just love people who are willing to risk health and death day in and day out to save our couch potato asses, our property and our "way of life" for a relative pittance in salary--unless they are still breathing when their service ends and they and become veterans entitled to veterans' benefits. Cannon fodder, saintly. Veterans, greedy.

Thing is, you don't get people to work for twenty, thirty, forty or fifty years based upon one contract and then breach your end of the bargain after they have fully performed their end. Especially, when you were the one who persuaded them to trade salary for benefits, like health care and pensions.

Remember contracts? They're sacred, arent't they? Isn't that why the bailout could not take away millions of dollars in annual bonuses from already highly paid banksters who ran their banks and the global economy into the ground? Because so doing would have been a "clawback" that (GASP) violated contracts? Forget that they would have had no jobs left at all without the bailout.

But, with no bailout or anything else to sweeten the deal, we get to take away the pensions we persuaded people to take in lieu of higher salary?

Shameful.

Some politicians with (D) after their names and their surrogates call defending public pensions "defending the indefensible."

Shame on them, too.

I am not the least bit hesitant to defend public pensions vigorously (though I may have cringed when defending paying huge Wall Street bonuses with bailout money).

Oh, and this is union busting to the nth power, plain and simple, emphasis on power.

What the hell good is the right to bargain collectively, if what you got via collective bargaining can simply be taken away from you by a vote, while the people whose lives and property you protect with your own life cheer on the politicians?

We are marching back to working conditions of the 1800's and earlier double time.
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Enthusiast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-30-12 04:57 AM
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1. Stupid people are voting against their own best interests.
I ask you, what will life be like when there are no pensions and no social security?

How many private corporations have raided their employee pension plans? This isn't confined to "government workers".

We are on the fast track to an 18th Century standard of social justice. You know, the good old days.
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-30-12 08:04 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. True, it is not confined to government workers, but government pensions are the ones
controlled by voters and the people elected by voters. They are also paid with taxpayer money. And that is why there is a sharp distinction, in rhetoric and otherwise, between the health care and pesnions of public employees versus the health care and pensions of employees in the private sector.

But, yes, there are similarities as well--and union busting has been back in style for a while now. John D. Rockefeller and the owners of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory would be proud. Problem is, I fear we do not have on the side the same kind of people as those who originally organized workers into unions, not in the unions and not in elected offices.
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