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Reply #41: Maybe that's not so difficult to understand... [View All]

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Sancho Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-04-11 03:33 AM
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41. Maybe that's not so difficult to understand...
I don't know the system in San Jose...and maybe there is something different or crazy there,

but take my wife's job as a teacher in Florida. In the mid-70's when she started teaching an annual contract was less than $9000 a year. Even today with five college degrees and 35 years experience, her salary is about the same as most college graduates just starting out, BUT her contract puts up 7% a year for retirement. She has put up more as an option in various retirement funds in addition to the state minimum. The state fund has made much more than 3% for decades. Even in bad years like now, the fund generates that much. Some years, the optional funds have made much more than 3%. The biggest problem with the state funds have been with Jeb, Rick Scott, and other politicians manipulating or skimming the dollars, otherwise it is a healthy pile of dough.

The unions have not been able to secure competitive salaries compared to most college graduates, and my wife has earned more money outside of teaching when she needed it...but the unions have fought hard here to protect the health insurance and keep the state from raiding the retirement fund. There are attempts just about every year to reduce benefits or make the public employees pay more...

....still; if she quits at 66 after 4 decades of putting up approximately 7%-10%, her retirement might equal or exceed her salary. Public employees here have taken 3% cuts lately and haven't seen raises in several years. The retirement that my wife put up though still grows every year. The teachers put up their money and their retirement is negotiated year after year.

No one cries foul all the years that teachers work for salaries that are about half what they deserve if they worked in private businesses. No one gave the teachers here million dollar bonuses even if their school and students did well. If every student paid 1% that they earned back to the teachers who taught them so that they got the education necessary to live better lives, some of those career teachers would be rolling in the dough. No one from Bill Gates down got where they did without those teachers.

Just like Elizabeth Warren points out - the public pays for the education, safety, transportation, and protection that make private business when public employees have legitimate earned health care and retirement, no one should begrudge them a penny! The vast majority of those people are not gaming the system...they just do a good job their whole life.
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