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Union Pension Funds, The States, and Financial Ruin

| July 14, 2010 | 0 Comments

seiu-cautionBack on December 15, 2008, I did a column titled, UAW President: Rob the People’s bank! That brought a deluge of email from members of the UAW who emphatically stated I was a selfish b*tch, that I knew nothing about unions and without a union, workers in the auto industry would be exploited. My column was about the flat out illegal bail out of the auto makers and how free trade has killed our most important job sectors. Yet, the victims of “free” trade continue to vote the same incumbents back into office who destroyed millions of jobs and who now refuse to get H.R. 4759 passed. Get the U.S. out of NAFTA and bring home millions of jobs. I wrote about this critical bill back on March 20, 2010. There are still only 30 sponsors; two Republicans. Neither the Republicans or the Democrats in the Outlaw Congress care about the American worker. Their votes have killed our economy; the so-called financial reform bill was nothing but more smoke and mirrors.

The Democrats have had control of Congress since January 2007. They have done nothing to bring home millions of jobs by getting the U.S. out of NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT, the WTO, stop the withholding taxing scheme, demand enforcement of our immigration laws and deporting as many illegal aliens as possible. Instead, Democrats in Congress champion illegals who have stolen MILLIONS of jobs that belong to Americans of both parties. Now, unions are going to spend a massive amount of money to return the same incumbents back to Congress to continue destroying this republic:

May 21, 2010. Unions to spend $100 million to save Dem majorities

Below is the mindset of the dummies coming out of the government indoctrination centers (public schools) that have inculcated the deadly communitarian doctrine (communist morality) into their heads that has led tens of millions of Americans to believe that federal government should be their caretaker throughout life. If you don’t understand collectivism v individualism, it is terribly important you take the time to learn. You can listen from a master of knowledge on the issue, G. Edward Griffin. Interview from my radio show; click here for June 9, 2010 show.

“Individual wealth is evil. Collective wealth is the only virtue, social justice is the destination and Barack is the shepherd leading us down that path. We must remove the barriers to equality created by capitalism and embrace the righteousness of socialism.” (Source, see comments section at bottom of article).

Slick career politicians like John Boehner [R-OH] can continue belching about jobs, but his votes killed millions of jobs. He is not a sponsor of H.R. 4759 to get US out of NAFTA. Boehner, like most Republicans and Democrats use political currency to bash the other party while Americans sink further into despair and poverty. If Democrats think it’s all the fault of Bush and Republicans, they are fools. The same goes for Republicans who blame everything on Democrats. Both parties have brought this nation to financial ruin. There are hundreds of thousands of hard working Americans from both parties working feverishly to get the same buzzards reelected in November who have loaded the gun and pulled the trigger on our economy and our children and grand children’s future. It is pure insanity.

Last year, a very knowledgeable man named Fred Starkey wrote two columns that really shook people up:

June 3, 2009. PERS: The Greatest Swindle in American History

June 19, 2009. Financial Rape: PERS of Oregon

After I read them, I brought Fred onto my radio show because pension short falls were just starting to get the long over due attention necessary to inform the American people of the dire condition of those funds. Millions of Americans depend on their retirement funds and like so many other columns I write, this one is going to give you the raw truth. Knowing the facts can help you make important decisions for you and your family. Hopefully, it will also encourage voters in November to throw out incumbents in your state legislature who have created another financial disaster that is going to badly hurt millions of Americans in the states of the Union. There are many good state legislators, but the incompetent fools from both parties out number those legislators who do know the solutions, but can’t get bills passed.

Congress has NO authority to steal the fruits of your labor, my sister’s, your brother or mother to bail out state pension funds because your state representative and senator have entered into long term binding agreements with unions that were never realistic — especially in the event the economy takes a down turn. If only “down turn” were the bottom line, but tragically, the American people haven’t seen anything yet. Do not send me hate mail for being the messenger. Read the facts, understand the issue and then decide how all this is/will affect you and your family. You can decide whether all these unions are good for your state. If you are a member of a union, whether UAW, SEIU or at the state level, perhaps there’s something here for you to think about, too.

Too many Americans are paying little or zero attention to what’s happened in Greece, Italy, Spain and other socialist countries. Many don’t realize Greece has unions and now that decades of bloated government spending (like the U.S.) and massive “entitlements” have driven Greece into financial ruin, there’s no more money to pay the bills, just like here in American both at the federal and state levels. The rioting has been going on for months over there and if you think it’s not possible here, think again.

Who pays the taxes for these union workers?

June 23, 2010. New York. “Man Earns $300,000 Public Pension. One of the critical problems facing the state and local governments are pension funds that are way under funded. Fox 5 News first reported on James Hunderfund in May. The retired superintendent of the Commack School System on Long Island earns a pension of about $316,000 a year. On top of that, Hunderfund is now the superintendent of the Malverne School District. Fox 5 obtained his contract, which shows he makes about $225,000 annually plus he gets 18 paid sick days and 23 paid vacation days a year. His wife is the superintendent of the Locust Valley Central School District on Long Island. Her contract shows she makes $250,000 a year. When she retires she’ll get a pension. All of this is perfectly legal and paid for by taxpayers.

“Fred Gorman, the founder of a watchdog group called Long Islanders for Educational Reform, says the state employee pension system is bleeding taxpayers dry and that the state Legislature needs to step up and change the system. The web site seethroughny.net lists some state pension earners. It shows a retiree from the New York Public Library earning a pension of more than $188,000 year.”

June 27, 2010. State pensions are inflated as workers boost salaries. (This is NY) “Carmen A. Granto Jr. cashed in 45 unused vacation days and 747 accumulated sick days, boosting his salary over $200,000 in his two years before retiring…. Granto is getting a $147,109 annual state pension in retirement. He was making $129,000 a year when he retired in 2009. How did he do it? The same way others before him did it.”

Underfunding of union pension funds isn’t just a problem for those who receive that check every month. It will drastically continue to affect our economy for a long time to come – especially local economies. How? By more rape at the federal level in taxes to illegally bail out any pension funds. While the habitual liar, Obama/Soetoro says there will be no more bail outs, it is the Outlaw Congress who can push through another grotesque and illegal plunder of the people’s treasury. If the Democrats believe they will lose control of the House in November, there is a good chance they will “lame duck” this type of illegal legislation on the way out:

May 24, 2010. The Next Bailout: $165B for Unions. “A Democratic senator is introducing legislation for a bailout of troubled union pension funds. If passed, the bill could put another $165 billion in liabilities on the shoulders of American taxpayers. The bill, which would put the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation behind struggling pensions for union workers, is being introduced by Senator Bob Casey, (D-Pa.), who says it will save jobs and help people. As FOX Business Network’s Gerri Willis reported Monday, these pensions are in bad shape; as of 2006, well before the market dropped and recession began, only 6% of these funds were doing well. Although right now taxpayers could possibly be on the hook for $165 billion, the liability could essentially be unlimited because these pensions have to be paid out until the workers die.”

We are talking massive numbers:

April 5, 2010. California Pensions Are $500 Billion Short, Stanford Study Says

April 9, 2010. States Skip Pension Payments, Delay Day of Reckoning

June 14, 2010. 61% Underfunded Illinois Teachers Pension Fund Goes For Broke, Becomes Next AIG-In-Waiting By Selling Billions In CDS

June 19, 2010. In Budget Crisis, States Take Aim at Pension Costs. “Many states are acknowledging this year that they have promised pensions they cannot afford and are cutting once-sacrosanct benefits, to appease taxpayers and attack budget deficits.”

As unemployment rises (it will get worse) and pensioners get less than their full check, states will continue to be unable to generate enough taxes to fund even basic services, much less these monstrous pension funds.

Are all state employees union?

Law and the Workplace On the Job
Unions in the Workplace

“If a union wins the election, must the workers join the union? No. Just as the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) gives employees the right to join unions, it also gives employees the right to refuse to join a union. The NLRA prohibits both employers and unions from forcing employees to join a union.

“However, employees can be forced to pay for the work that the union performs on their behalf, even if they do not want to join the union. Most collective bargaining agreements contain a union security clause. In effect, this clause requires workers to pay the dues and fees that union members are required to pay. If a worker refuses to pay dues, he or she can be fired.

“Because the law requires the union to represent all the workers in the bargaining unit, regardless of whether they are members of the union, the law allows the union to “tax” the workers for the benefits they receive from union representation. Some states prohibit union security clauses.”

Let me ask this question: Is belonging to a union good for your future? Do they are care about you – state unions or private ones like the AFL-CIO, Teamsters?

Let’s take one of the most corrupt, the SEIU. The Service Employees International Union spent $60 MILLION dollars to get a stinking communist, who is legally ineligible to run for president “elected” — that would be Obama/Soetoro who was born with dual citizenship. In 2007, Congressman Ron Paul introduced the Tax Free Tip Act would would make tips for service workers exempt from federal or employment taxes. You would think the SEIU and Obama/Soetoro would have jumped on that bill: No more federal taxes on tips for waiters, waitresses and so forth. Oh, no, the SEIU did nothing to let their members know anything about it. So, don’t tell me the SEIU cares about their workers. That union supported a Marxist who is hell bent on stealing every last penny from every American except those he’s in bed with politically and financially. To be fair, the “caring” Republicans also ignored the bill.

How about the hundred million or so working folks who don’t belong to a union and are dying under the weight of federal and state taxes? Do unions serve taxpayers?

Albany Police Officers Union President Chris Mesley recently chimed in regarding his position and the American taxpayer: “I’m not running a popularity contest here,” Mesley said. “If I’m the bad guy to the average citizen . . . and their taxes have go up to cover my raise, I’m very sorry about that, but I have to look out for myself and my membership.“

People want police protection, but should they be required to pay for it 10, 20, 30 years after a police officer has left public service? Does a policeman pay your retirement from J.C. Penny’s after 25 years on the job for another 20 years? Shouldn’t it be the responsibility of the individual to plan for their retirement and set up their own private retirement fund or should the public be forced to contribute just because the individual worked in “public service” whether it be police, state hospital worker or janitor at the state capitol?

April 28, 2010. Public Employee Unions Work Against The Public

“Many public sector union members get health benefits when they retire for free or nearly free for the rest of their lives. A friend’s mother retired from a Northeast state DMV. She was a clerk. She has medical coverage for life with $2 co-pays! Her pension was just raised $4,000 a year. What clerk gets that in the private sector? It is also not uncommon for public pensions to be high 5 or low 6 figure amounts. Why should taxpayers pay for lavish health care plans and pensions that most do not get themselves?

“Public unions across the country do not want to curb their pay, medical benefits or pensions, even though there is great pain and expense to the taxpayer and the economy. Public unions are not the entire reason states are in financial trouble, but cutting those benefits are certainly part of the solution. The good of the union cannot supercede the good of the public which pays them. Look for more protests and backlash from unions as they are asked to take cuts. Look for more outrage and push back from the public as they are asked to pay for the lush benefits. I predict public unions will either take some big cuts voluntarily or be forced to do so through bankruptcy. This money fight will not play well with hard working voters in the private sector this fall. Remember, the private sector is the only place where real wealth and prosperity is created. The public sector does not generate revenue, it only confiscates taxpayer money. Taxpayers need union employees to work for them–not against them.”

Make no mistake about it: Unions hold lawmakers hostage after they buy their favors with campaign donations. They are powerful, but now, well, the rooster is coming home to croak.

Of course, one must pay attention to the ‘International’ in SEIU. That union is just another communist front operation promising workers utopia, social justice and all the other communist claptrap while mother government drowns them in more and more taxes. If you think I’m just blowing smoke, you haven’t studied communism as I have for more than a decade. But, don’t listen to me, listen to William Z. Foster who wrote, Toward Soviet America. Foster was a useful fool, a Marxist labor organizer. He served as Secretary General of the Communist party USA (very active here in the USA) and promoted the destruction of free markets and capitalism – the very systems that made America the greatest debt free nation every on this earth. You can read Toward Soviet America on line here. Learn how important unions are to the communists towards Sovietizing this republic.

In no way am I saying that every American who belongs to any union is a communist or has communist sympathies. What I am saying is that the goal of world communism is to replace our free enterprise system by drumming into people’s heads – especially union members – that capitalism is evil. Tear down the classes! Raise up the toiling masses to their place of social and economic justice! Unionize workers so the working class can rise up for justice! Very dangerous propaganda and Foster gives it to you in plain language:

“The final aim of the Communist International is to overthrow world capitalism and replace it by world Communism, “the basis for which has been laid by the whole course of historical development.” On this the Program of the Communist International says :

“Communist society will abolish the class division of society, i.e., simultaneously with the anarchy in production, it will abolish all forces of exploitation and oppression of man by man. Society will no longer consist of antagonistic classes in conflict with each other, but will represent a united commonwealth of labor. For the first time in its history mankind will take its fate into its own hands….

“The future Communist society will be Stateless. With private property in industry and land abolished (but, of course, not in articles of personal use), with exploitation of the toilers ended, and with the capitalist class finally defeated and all classes liquidated, there will then be no further need for the State, which in its essence, is an organ of class repression…..

“The road to this social development can only be opened by revolution. This is because the question of power is involved. The capitalist class, like an insatiable blood-sucker, hangs to the body of the toiling masses and can be dislodged only by force. But when the workers have conquered power, how- ever, then the way is clear for an orderly development of society by a process of evolution. Naturally, even after capitalism has been overthrown and the power taken by the workers, society cannot simply leap to a complete Communist system. There are stages of development to be gone through. The first of these is the transition period from the overthrow of capitalism to the establishment of Socialism.”

An exceptional read on this is by Dr. Fred Schwarz: You Can Trust the Communists to be Communists. Dr. Schwarz goes into Techniques for Seizing Power, Revolt Through Labor Union Control, pgs 72-83. This short work (182 pgs) is free on line; click here.

It’s staring you right in the face America. Obama/Soetoro’s “czars” are a collection of dedicated socialists to hard core Marxists.

Whether union or not, I highly encourage you to read this superb piece: Forgotten Facts of American Labor History By Tom Woods (May 5, 2010):

“The ways in which labor unionism impoverishes society are legion, from the distortions in the labor market described above to union work rules that discourage efficiency and innovation. The damage that unions have inflicted on the economy in recent American history is actually far greater than anyone might guess. In a study published jointly in late 2002 by the National Legal and Policy Center and the John M. Olin Institute for Employment Practice and Policy, economists Richard Vedder and Lowell Gallaway of Ohio University calculated that labor unions have cost the American economy a whopping $50 trillion over the past 50 years alone.

“That is not a misprint. “The deadweight economic losses are not one-shot impacts on the economy,” the study explains. “What our simulations reveal is the powerful effect of the compounding over more than half a century of what appears at first to be small annual effects.” Not surprisingly, the study did find that unionized labor earned wages 15 percent higher than those of their nonunion counterparts, but it also found that wages in general suffered dramatically as a result of an economy that is 30 to 40 percent smaller than it would have been in the absence of labor unionism.

“Although labor unionism has actually made working people worse off, however, the usual argument for labor unionism and government legislation on behalf of labor is that in the absence of these things, employers will pay their workers unconscionably low wages.”

A monstrous storm is building within the states because there is no money to meet all these obligations for public union pension obligations. Many pensions have taken a massive hit from the BP disaster in the Gulf:

How BP Screwed Over 42 State Retirement Funds, Including Alabama And Florida

“The California Public Employees’ Retirement System lost $284.6 million in value as the largest oil spill in U.S. history erased more than $1.4 billion from BP PLC shares held by 42 state retirement accounts, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The declines come as public pension funds are struggling to recover from investment losses that averaged 21 percent last year, according to Wilshire Associates of Los Angeles.”

In the meantime, the states of the Union are putting everything in jeopardy because to date, not one of them have passed a sound money bill. Why is this so important? Back in January, I sent a letter to 1100 state reps and senators about a sound money bill. It is self explanatory; the actual letter is at the bottom of the column. However, it is imperative that every citizen of every state, union or non union, understand that almost 3/4ths of the states in this Union are headed towards either total financial collapse or severe financial ship wrecks that will cause a huge harm to her citizens.

Those who depend on monthly checks from union pensions had better take the time to understand the information below because the states simply cannot meet those obligations and it will get worse for some time to come. In my humble opinion, some of what the states are doing with your retirement is dangerous for many reasons. The prime reason is the decline of the dollar, ignorance of our monetary system, what will happen when the FED can no longer print trillions in confetti and the commie Chinese refuse to bail out America’s foolishness.

Here are but a few examples:

June 1, 2007. Banks Sell ‘Toxic Waste’ CDOs to Calpers, Texas Teachers Fund
Feb. 18, 2010. U.S. state pension funds have $1 trillion shortfall
March 11, 2010. Public Pension Funds Gamble With Risky Investments
March 11, 2010. Failed Banks May Get Pension-Fund Backing as FDIC Seeks Cash

Let me give you a few words from Dr. Edwin Vieira’s testimony in March 2009 for the financial committee, Montana State Legislature; the bill did not make it out of committee. A tragedy:

“The provision of an alternative currency will promote social justice. It will begin to rectify the wrongs perpetrated against wage earners whose standards of living cannot keep up with the systematic inflation built into the Federal Reserve System; against the elderly and infirm who live on fixed incomes that steadily erode in purchasing power; against those anxiously approaching retirement while watching the real values of their pension funds evaporate; against the poor whose only wealth is the small amount of currency they acquire from week to week; and against all the recipients of essential public services that the State finds it difficult or even impossible to provide to the requisite degree because the real values of tax revenues cannot keep pace with costs. And,

“The provision of an alternative currency will fulfill the State’s legal, moral, and political responsibility to protect the safety, health, and general welfare of her people against an economic calamity that no one doubts confronts this country at the present time…..

“But with this opportunity comes a extremely heavy responsibility as well. This matter is too important to be left to a single legislative committee’s determination. More than any other issue in recent memory, the need to provide Montana with a economically sound and constitutional alternative currency vitally affects every resident of this State, and perhaps every resident of the United States as a whole—not simply immediately, but for many years to come. A mistake made here and now may prove incapable of correction later on.”

I set up a special page to make this issue easy to understand. It contains Dr. Vieira’s full speech as well as others. It has model statutes written by Edwin for both state governments and Congress. This isn’t about Republicans v Democrats, right v left. This is an American issue that affects tens of millions of folks who depend on public pension annuities. The monetary issue affects every man, woman and child in this country. All states go back into session in January. Boots on the ground: Every adult in every state must stay after your state rep and senator to get a sound money bill passed – something that should have been done five years ago or more. We are talking about the lifeblood of our nation and the ability for the states to survive. Here is the special web site.

Important links:

Pension Watch
States of Crisis for 46 Governments Facing Greek-Style Deficits
Petition – Right to Work Committee
Unions are the Biggest Threat to Farm Workers
FEC Fails to Investigate Teachers’ Complaint of NEA Union Money Laundering Scheme
May 18, 2010. Reelecting the Band Aid Brigade

My choice for president of these united States of America in 2010: Rep. Sam Rohrer of Pennsylvania.

Rohrer Votes Against Costly Public Pension Bill “Representative Sam Rohrer (R-Berks) today voted against a bill approved by the House that would increase the cost to taxpayers paying for retirement benefits for current state employees, teachers and legislators in the state’s two pension systems.”

You tube video of Barack Obama in Kenya supporting Raila Odinga, the election and violence afterwards. Odinga was the “agent of change” who “promised to redistribute the wealth of the country more evenly” Remember: Odinga, a Marxist socialist is Obama’s cousin.

SEIU – Neanderthal thugs who appear to have taken lessons from Obama/Soetoro’s cousin. Violence has a nasty way of escalating.

Dozens Storm D.C. Bank Branches
Huge Mob of SEIU Goons Attacks Banker’s Home
SEIU Calls Senators Terrorists

Devvy Kidd authored the booklets, Why A Bankrupt America and Blind Loyalty; 2 million copies sold. Devvy appears on radio shows all over the country. She left the Republican Party in 1996 and has been an independent voter ever since. Devvy isn’t left, right or in the middle; she is a constitutionalist who believes in the supreme law of the land, not some political party.

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