Why are states bankrupt? Gov't employee unions!

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by rbell, May 27, 2010.

  1. rbell

    rbell
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    Government employee unions (particularly those w/collective bargaining agreements (which is most of them) are one of the primary reasons many states are going bankrupt. (Find a dictionary, and cross-reference "California" and "Bankrupt.")

    Of course, I'm not a big fan of today's unions in private sector--but the abuses, waste, fraud, and excesses of unions hits a new level in the public sector. (I hate that term--let's just call them "government workers;" only I'm not sure that "work" is accurate where gov't unions are involved).

    The New York Post reports on some traveties HERE:
    • Overtime kicks in by eight-hour day rather than 40-hour week. So employees earn full pay while working less by calling out sick and then making up the lost wages through (premium) overtime.
    • Many bus drivers clock a 12-hour shift for driving four hours in the morning rush and four in the evening rush. For the four hours in between, they're paid for being available -- but with no work to do.
    • Whenever crew members of the Long Island Rail Road are switched from one train to another, they get another day's full pay.
    • Real-time bus arrival information is finally being tested on Manhattan's 34th Street -- more than a decade after technology had made it possible. Union drivers didn't want to be tracked, so union bus mechanics refused to service wheels with the rotation-counting device needed to supplement GPS in its early days.
    • While the new system on the Canarsie line can run trains with no crew aboard, L trains still operate with crews of two -- thanks to union work rules.
    • The union representing crane operators insists on having full-time "oilers" at construction sites every day. But unlike the steam-driven equipment of old, modern cranes don't need constant lubrication.
    • On building sites across the city, union operators must staff elevators -- even when they have normal push-buttons for each floor.
    • Told it would cost $1,000 to have a union electrician plug a laptop into the wall of a Midtown hotel, one smart customer ran out and bought a spare battery for $70 instead -- and then noted it would be cheaper to buy a whole new computer than to pay the hotel electrician.
    • A Midtown hotel just lost out on hosting the Sidney Hillman Foundation awards dinner after its unionized workers said they'd refuse to serve the foundation president -- because he also heads up a rival union.
     
    #1 rbell, May 27, 2010
    Last edited: May 27, 2010
  2. menageriekeeper

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    Aren't you glad you live in Alabama? :D We only have a teacher's union to deal with.
     
  3. rbell

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    Alabama--lower taxes, and less union influence---these are reasons our economy hasn't ended up in the toilet like many others' have.
     
  4. sag38

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    Boy, and the one union is doing everything it can to smear Bryne. Wonder why? Makes me want to vote for him just to wipe smut in the AEA's eye.
     
  5. Magnetic Poles

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    So you don't think decreases in tax revenue due to people out of work and declining home values have anything to do with the fiscal problems the state and local governments are dealing with?
     
  6. rbell

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    I think that that particular storm could be weathered if the cost of government wasn't spiraling out of control--largely due to the unsustainable and unreasonable costs of salaries, benefits, pensions, etc.

    The bluer the state, the worse the problem...because the stronger the foothold of unions.
     
  7. Salty

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    Are you saying unions are the only problem?

    It would be interesting to see what % of budget goes for salary and what % goes to govt give-a-way programs.
     
  8. gb93433

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    Let's do away with taxes and tax everything that people buy. Why have gas tax when you can have tolls instead every few miles? Why pay taxes for police when you can have self appointed police instead? if we did not have police then everyone could pack a pistol.

    I always thought it was the crooks in the banking system that brought on the problem. Let's do away with banks and regulation so we would not have to pay taxes to have them regulated. everything would be better if we did not have any taxes.
     
  9. targus

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    Nice try at misdirection - but not good enough.
     
  10. Melanie

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    Well, at least the USA is still getting funds ....look at poor old Greece...BANKRUPT, and France teetering....actually check out the CIA Fact book it is amazing in that every nation I have looked at is billions in debt if not trillions ( a meaningless monetary unit....it is beyond imagination)
     
  11. gb93433

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    How is China doing?
     
  12. gb93433

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    I just visited a city in Wyoming and it has an economy that is growing.
     
  13. Mississippi John

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    What city ? My daughter lives in Wyo.
     
  14. targus

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  15. gb93433

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    The city was Gillette. I am sure it will be doing better with the BP troubles.
     
  16. gb93433

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    How does one explain the economy doing worse with the unions controlling less than they did many years ago and the economy was doing much better?
     
  17. targus

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    You need to go back and read the OP.

    The topic is State governments going broke due to government union employees.

    While wages are going down for the private sector and unemployment going up - government employees are getting raises and the government just keeps hiring.

    The fact is though that government employees are paid by tax dollars collected from private employee wages.

    Eventually it reaches a tipping point when it can no longer be supported.

    With State governments going broke we may already be there.
     
    #17 targus, May 28, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: May 28, 2010
  18. rbell

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    First--of course the union issue isn't the only one.

    Second--we're not talking about unions in general...but the role of unions in government employee sectors. Their influence, in many states, has grown considerably.
     
  19. billwald

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    In Washington State the pensions for govt new hires have been degraded 2 or 3 times. The latest police pension (LOEFF 2) does not recognize the existence of mental problems in police officers. In the last few years there have been several police shootings and suicides that might have been averted if the system provided psychiatric counseling.
     

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