I Want Your Money

The Fraternal Order of Police in Camden New Jersey proved without a shadow of a doubt, public union willingness to toss fellow officers to the dogs. In a 300-1 vote, the union rejected an offer that that would have saved 100 jobs. That offer called for three days a month of unpaid furloughs for patrol officers for six months, then one furlough day in each of the following 12 months.

Please consider Camden police union rejects concession deal that could bring back 100 laid-off officers.
Altogether, more than 15 percent of Camden’s municipal workers, including 68 firefighters and about 100 civilians, were laid off as the city tries to fill a huge budget gap brought on by rising costs, decreased tax revenues and diminished aid from the state.
But screw that, we just want the money and even more jobs is not enough for this Union.
CalPERS (the California Public Employee Retirement System) and CalSTRS (the California State Teachers Retirement System).  CalPERS has over 9,000 employees receiving $100k or more in pensions; CalSTRS has over 3,000.
And they can retire at 50. and take ANOTHER JOB!

Lines are being drawn and the fight to reduce overly generous pay and benefits to government employees at the federal, state, and local level is underway. Not too surprisingly, public employee unions are gearing up, rallying government employees, and exerting pressure to maintain the generous pay and benefits that has loaded government with unsustainable debt. Public employee unions are, even now, pressing the Obama Administration for additional benefits and power.

President Obama, either unwilling, or perhaps unable, to bring long-overdue accountability to powerful public employee unions, has instead issued guidance requiring greater Union representation and input into federal agency decision making. Obama’s decision will likely embolden union bosses to think they can escape accountability and an honest review of benefits, salary, and pensions of government employees.

Perhaps it is time to send a different message. President Obama, like many Americans, is probably unaware that the federal government actually subsidizes federal government employee union operations. In fact, the federal government provides unions with free office space, pays for union member time and picks up travel and per diem costs. These “perks” represent a tax that has never been approved by American taxpayers–perks which operate at a level below the radar of Congress and well below the radar of the IRS. These hidden “perks” provided to government employee unions cost American taxpayers millions of dollars annually.

According to official data, federal employees currently spend some 2.9 million official work hours, at government expense, engaging in collective bargaining and union activities, representing a taxpayer cost of approximately $120 million. But the taxpayer costs and subsidizes to public employee unions is much higher than the official report because government does not account for all the expenses related to union activity.

Federal government unions are, in essence, running a business within the federal government. As we begin the debate over the proper role (if any) unions should have in government, one step Americans should all be able to agree upon is that taxpayer money should not be used to subsidize union activities.

Many Americans may be unaware that unions exist in every federal agency. In fact, most agencies have several unions competing for employee participation and funding which means that federal agencies are subsidizing the costs for several unions at the same time!

These federal agency union representatives have a large presence in Washington, DC, the seat of the federal government. But, most federal locations throughout the United States also have a union representative. So, for example, in a city, such as Kansas City, where the federal complex houses multiple government agencies, there will be multiple federal union representatives, from each federal union, within each federal agency, all at the same building location.

Why is this important?

Federal government union representatives are actually federal employees. They hold GS ranks and civil service status, and actually have federal jobs that they were employed to perform. Their union duties are, supposedly, performed over and above the requirements of their regular day job. However, because of the pernicious and growing power of federal unions, oftentimes, union duties often are performed in lieu of their job. Paid time off from regular government duties is allowed, in most federal agencies, for the union representative to solicit federal employees (i.e. market services), to attend union meetings (i.e. work for an entity other than their government employer) or travel to have “face time” with their union bosses in DC. All at taxpayer expense.

In addition, union representatives often request and are provided with office space that is more expansive than is warranted by their GS rank or than their federal job duties require. The cost of this additional square footage is also paid for by the American taxpayer, and is paid for at each federal agency, for each federal union representative, for each federal union. Federal government union representatives total thousands of federal employees, all billing their time, travel and per diem, for non-government related work, to the American taxpayer.

Perhaps an even bigger problem is that the federal government union representatives sometimes seem to operate under the mistaken belief that they were hired by the government to work for the union—and that union work is more important than the federal job they were hired to perform.

Unions seem, at best, indifferent to the performance of government and are exclusively concerned with pay and benefits of union workers. Therein lies another irony for the American taxpayer. Unions are organized to negotiate against employers, but, since the federal government is the employer, and since the American people pay for the federal government, then, technically, federal government employee unions might be construed as organizing against the American people.

It is time to bring some accountability to public employee unions. A good first step would be for Congress to get a grip on the proliferation of benefits for unions in the federal government, whose activities are an additional burden on federal taxpayers. Congress should change federal policies on payment of travel, per diem and office space for federal government union employees.

Better yet, perhaps President Obama should take the lead.

But he won’t. He’s too much of a kool-aid drinking Union guy, plus the Democrats are beholden to them like no other group.

The next closest influence are Trial Lawyers, and guess where they fit in – Health Care.

Gee, what a coincidence!

That memo being (in part):

Federal managers should seek employee input before major decisions are made, not after solutions are developed, according to a memo from Obama administration officials.

In a meeting on Wednesday with federal management and labor representatives, Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry and Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director for Management Jeff Zients reminded agency leaders to improve dialogue with employees by involving them before making final decisions. Managers should engage unions early in decision-making processes, as outlined in President Obama’s December 2009 executive order, said the memo.

Executive Order 13522 creates labor-management partnerships governmentwide and on the agency level. The order also requires the National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations to launch pilot programs that will test bargaining over issues not normally negotiable by law in a small group of agencies and directs management to include pre-decisional involvement “in all workplace matters to the fullest extent practicable.” (Government executive.com)

In other words, Unions should be consulted before management makes any decisions. Making them, in effect, Managers.

Do you get that level of input at your job?

I know I don’t.

But Unions are special. They are the protected class in Liberal ideology.

They fight against the evil Corporations!

And they are killing us all.

“Ultimately, the goal is to allow employees, through their elected labor representatives, to have meaningful input, which results in better quality decision-making, more support for decisions, and timelier implementation,” the memo stated.

If you kiss our butt we won’t go on strike or we won’t work to destroy you. Sounds rather Mafia like doesn’t it?

The union idea of civil discourse is to protest outside opponents’ private homes. Now union supporters are targeting a developer , with fliers showing a bull’s-eye and his home address. Cue the chirping crickets. That will be the soundtrack for mainstream media reaction to the latest example of thuggery perpetrated by Wal-Mart opponents who are not happy that the non-union retailer wants to build a Wal-Mart-anchored development on the site of an abandoned Chevy dealership in Washington, D.C. The development would employ up to 1,200 people in a city with 10.2% unemployment.

A group calling itself Wal-Mart Free DC is organizing a protest, not at one of the proposed sites or at Wal-Mart headquarters, but at the private home of the developer. A flier produced by the group gives his name and home address and invites protesters to assemble on his front lawn. Oh, yes: There’s a smiley face centered on some cross hairs on the flier.

The group claims no formal union affiliation, yet prominently displayed on the group’s website are links to sites such as WalMartWatch funded by Service Employees International Union and United Commercial and Food Workers International Union. Certainly they are employing the thuggish tactics used before by the purple shirts of SEIU.

Last May, a frightened teenager was trapped inside his home as a mob of about 500 bussed in by SEIU demonstrated and chanted on his front lawn in an effort to intimidate his father, a deputy general counsel with Bank of America. Fortune magazine’s Nina Easton was a neighbor and provided the account of a story that might otherwise have received little notice.

As Easton reported, some 14 bus loads of people organized by the SEIU and a Chicago outfit called National Political Action descended on her neighbor’s home, armed with bullhorns, shouting about greedy banks and home foreclosures. After the mob was done, the buses took them to the nearby residence of a J.P. Morgan Chase executive.

Asked by Easton about the rationale behind such protests, SEIU representative Steven Leerner said:

“People in powerful corporations seem to think they can insulate themselves from the damage they are doing.”

So the union feels entitled to target — yes, we said target — them in their private homes.

The group that gathered at the developer’s home Thursday night was smaller and less-organized, but its purpose was equally clear — to intimidate those who would oppose it with the oldest threat in the book: “We know where you live.”

Wal-Mart is America’s largest employer outside of unionized government. (IBD)

And Unions want and need your money and your job to pay for their own, after all.

They are vastly more important that you.

They are warrior for the Cause.

American Federation of Teachers’ President Randi Weingarten has been doing her best to make sure Big Labor has a say in education reform. She wants to drive the train. The National Education Association, on the other hand, is taking the tact of putting dynamite under the tracks. While Weingarten says all the right things and uses all the necessary poll-tested phrases, she really wants to maintain the status quo. No tenure reform. No need to judge teachers by any measure other than seniority.

But in an interview with Newsweek, she made this curious statement, in response to Bill Gates saying, “We need to measure what they do, and then have incentives for the other teachers to learn those things:”

“Football teams do this all the time,” Weingarten responded. “They look at the tape after every game. Sometimes they do it during the game. They’re constantly deconstructing what is working and what isn’t working. And they’re jettisoning what isn’t working and building up on what is working, and doing it in a teamlike approach.”

That’s correct – they do. It’s too bad that public education does not operate more like the NFL.

Here’s an idea. Let’s have the NEA and AFT become the owners of a new NFL franchise. For a lack of a better name, we’ll call the new team the Thugs.

Players on the Thugs’ roster would receive tenure after two years, like they do in New York City Public Schools. They can play on the Thugs as long as they’d like, regardless of their skill level. And players would be judged not for their ability to score touchdowns or sack quarterbacks, but the number of years they’ve been in the NFL.

Over time, the Thugs’ roster would be filled with 50- and 60-year old players, raking in the big bucks while losing game after game.

Does anyone believe that the hypothetical Thugs, with their incredible job security, would be competitive with the teams that compensate players based on their performance and frequently alter their rosters to maintain an edge?

It would be wonderful if public education would operate more like the NFL, where you get paid for results and released for incompetence. Maybe then American K-12 students would receive the instruction they truly deserve.

Do what benefits you the most and proclaim to be doing it “for the children” is the fastest way to the Barf Bag for me folks.

But Unions don’t work that way. They just protect the incompetent and insulate themselves from any accountability for anything.

Oh, and they want ALL your Money. They deserve it. After all, they are special. 🙂

Political Cartoon

Welcome to The Future

Political Cartoon

The Most Expensive Congress in History: The 111th Congress.

http://video.foxnews.com/v/4476944/111th-congress-most-expensive-in-history/?playlist_id=86858

When Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) gave her inaugural address as speaker of the House in 2007, she vowed there would be “no new deficit spending.” Since that day, the national debt has increased by $5 trillion, according to the U.S. Treasury Department.

“After years of historic deficits, this 110th Congress will commit itself to a higher standard: Pay as you go, no new deficit spending,” Pelosi said in her speech from the speaker’s podium. “Our new America will provide unlimited opportunity for future generations, not burden them with mountains of debt.”

Pelosi has served as speaker in the 110th and 111th Congresses.

“Our new America will provide unlimited opportunity for future generations, not burden them with mountains of debt.”- Nancy Pelosi, 2007 inauguration speech.

At the close of business on Jan. 4, 2007, Pelosi’s first day as speaker, the national debt was $8,670,596,242,973.04 (8.67 trillion), according to the Bureau of the Public Debt, a division of the U.S. Treasury Department.  At the close of business on Oct. 22, it stood at $13,667,983,325,978.31 (13.67 trillion), an increase of 4,997,387,083,005.27 (or approximately $5 trillion). (CNS)

WHOOPS!

Some of the world’s strongest banks have profited from an emergency credit facility set up by the US Federal Reserve to shore up confidence in the global financial system, according to a Financial Times analysis of data released by the Fed.

More than half of lending under the Fed’s term auction facility – the largest of its crisis programmes – went to foreign banks. Details of the varied uses to which they put it may add to political criticism of the Fed.

The Taf was set up in December 2007 to provide one-month loans to creditworthy banks as markets dried up for lending longer than overnight. In August 2008, it began offering three-month loans as well.

Rabobank of the Netherlands and Toronto-Dominion of Canada, two of the only banks in the world with triple A credit ratings, used more than $20bn in cumulative Taf loans.

Ed Clark, TD chief executive, said that using Taf was logical even though his bank never had a liquidity problem. “That wasn’t how we made a lot of money. But you make a dollar here, you make a dollar there. What’s the spread you make on a billion dollars?” he said. (FT)

WHOOPS!

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. — Leaders of this city met for more than seven hours on a Saturday not long ago, searching for something to cut from a budget that has already been cut, over and over.

“We can make it until March 1 — maybe,” Mr. Cooper said of Hamtramck’s ability to pay its bills. Beyond that? The political leaders of this old working-class city almost surrounded by Detroit are pleading with the state to let them declare bankruptcy, a desperate move the state is not even willing to admit as an option under the current circumstances.

“The state is concerned that if they say yes to one, if that door is opened, they’ll have 30 more cities right behind us,” Mr. Cooper said, as flurries fell outside his City Hall window. “But anything else is just a stop gap. We’re going to continue to pursue bankruptcy until the door is shut, locked, barricaded, bolted.”

You mean the UAW is concerned. The UAW runs the State, or at least in Mafiaoso style they think they do. They have the politicians and media in their pockets and have for more than a generation.

They did when I was growing up in Michigan. Now with the Socialist Wheaties of the modern Liberals behind them I’m sure they are more Tony Soprano than Jimmy Hoffa.

And the last thing the UAW wants is to have their union busted by bankruptcies.

But the inevitable is coming. And THEY DON’T CARE!

Union pensions and benefits, not just the UAW, but Government Public Sector Unions also, and other private Unions have been sucking industry and the taxpayers dry for several generations but the cash cow is out of milk and endanger of dying altogether.

And you know what, THEY DON’T CARE!

Everyone must sacrifice for them. They are holy. They are sacrosanct.

They are untouchable.

So they believe. And since they have been buying Democrats for generations they will be the Pied Piper to all their slave rats.

Because THEY DON’T CARE.

And ultimately, that is the lesson of the last 3 years of Pelosi-Reid and Obama.

They said all the right things to get their hands on your throat and then they throttled you with debt to pass their 90 year old Socialist wet dreams and they are still at it and will be still at it with control of the Senate and the President.

THEY DON’T CARE.

They, and the Unions, are the ultimate in GREED and CORRUPTION.

Prichard, Ala., which stopped paying monthly checks to retired city workers when its pension fund ran out last year, is appealing a bankruptcy judge’s ruling that it did not qualify for Chapter 9 under Alabama law.

And they telegraphed it ahead of time, and no one cared.

A Liberals personal pursuit of everyone else’s money for their own benefit, economically or politically, is all they care about.

It’s all about THEM.

Screw you.

Now that’s your “kind”, “Compassionate” and “caring” Liberals who are always looking out for “the little guy”.

To crush them into slavery and steal everyone else’s wealth and power from themselves.

Officials in Detroit announced this year that they had for years overpaid Hamtramck in a revenue-sharing deal related to a General Motors plant that sits smack on the border of the two cities. The dispute is likely to be resolved, eventually, in court, but meanwhile, Detroit has stopped paying $2 million a year, and Hamtramck is watching a growing gap in its $18 million budget.

Could it be that these “overpayments” were ok until Detroit had to hide it’s own budget woes so they passed it on to another city?

Hmmm….

“Detroit is cutting police, lighting, road repairs and cleaning services affecting as much as 20% of the population,” the Guardian’s Elena Moya noted late Monday, writing about the 60 Minutes piece. “The city, which has been on the skids for almost two decades with the decline of the US auto industry, does not generate enough wealth to maintain services for its 900,000 inhabitants.”

BINGO!

City Manager Bill Cooper said the city of roughly 20,000 people is staring at a $3 million deficit.
California, which faces a $19 billion (some say as high as $26 Billion) budget deficit next year, has a credit rating approaching junk status. It now spends more money on public employee pensions than it does on the state university system, which had to increase its tuition by 32 percent.
“This is the state of affairs in Illinois. Is not pretty,” Illinois state Comptroller Dan Hynes told Kroft.  

Hynes is the state’s paymaster. He currently has about $5 billion in outstanding bills in his office and not enough money in the state’s coffers to pay them. He says they’re six months behind.

“The state’s a deadbeat,” Kroft remarked.  

“Yeah. I mean, the state of Illinois is known as a deadbeat state. This is a reputation that has taken us years to earn and we’ve reached, you know, the heights of, I think, becoming the worst in the country,” Hynes said. (CBS)

The home of our President, Done Proud. 🙂
Unions have a $3 Trillion Dollar appetite and it’s insatiable. And THEY DON’T CARE.
No one is talking about it now, but the big test will come this spring. That’s when $160 billion in federal stimulus money, that has helped states and local governments limp through the great recession, will run out.
You thought TARP was for the “economy”. No, it wasn’t.
It was for the state employee unions and foreign banks.
That’s running out.
Now the wheels of this Cadillac are about to go bald and flat.
Now this is driving a car into a ditch.
And I guarantee you, the Liberals and the Unions DON’T CARE!

Mr. Cooper, the city manager (of Hamtramck), says that everything else that could be cut already has been, while the city goes on spending 60 percent of its total general fund (of an $18 million dollar budget) to pay for its police and firefighting forces — 75 current police officers and firefighters and about 240 former workers and spouses now on pensions. Mr. Cooper said that an entry-level police officer costs the city about $75,000 a year in salary and benefits, and yet repeated efforts to renegotiate contracts have failed.

“They kind of have the Cadillac plan,” Mr. Cooper said, “and we’d kind of like the Chevy.”

Trust me, Unions of all types love Cadillacs.

Growing up in Flint,Mi the one-time home of 7 auto plants and an AC Delco Engine Plant. “Buick City” it was called (there was a billboard proclaiming this 10 miles south of town near Fenton off I-75).

It had a population of 250,000 when I was growing up. Last year it was 125,000 and everyone of those plants had closed years ago.

But growing up my friends and I always said that only 2 kinds of people drove Cadillacs, Pimps and Auto Workers. So no much difference there.

That was the 1970’s. In 40 years it hasn’t gotten any better.

(Found, Mr. Cooper says, posted on the wall of the firefighters’ barracks was his name — crossed out — on a list of former city managers and the word “Next?”)

So let the extortion begin. It’s the only tactic Unions use. Economic and political hardball extortion.

After all, dozens of Unions have been exempted from ObamaCare and their “Cadillac” Health Plans are exempt until 2018.

So it’s not like they care or anything.

“I’m not going to wait for two hours for a cop to show up,” said Shannon Lowell, the co-owner of a coffee shop. “We’ve trimmed every bit of fat. What else are we going to do? Borrow money from our dying grandmother?” (NYT)

Yep. That would also be the grandma who the government is going to pull the plug on because she’s a burden to society according to Medicare and Medicaid Director Dr. Donald Berwick.

Welcome to the Future.

“If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a
human face – forever.”— George Orwell

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Political Cartoon

Truth

Liberals Look away Now, The truth is coming next and the Thought Police will come knocking on your door to “re-educate” you if you read this. 
It is a Thought Crime. You have been Warned!
During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. —George Orwell

“We’re the big dog,” said Larry Scanlon, the head of AFSCME’s political operations. “But we don’t like to brag.”

“The more members coming in, the more dues coming in, the more money we have for politics,” Mr. Scanlon said. (WSJ)

The Obama administration has made sure that we all know that the Republican-leaning Chamber of Commerce is putting big bucks into this election campaign.   But, as Brody Mullins and John McKinnon point out at WSJ, the biggest spenders, by far, are labor unions.  And the biggest single spender is not the Chamber but the union representing government employees.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is now the biggest outside spender of the 2010 elections, thanks to an 11th-hour effort to boost Democrats that has vaulted the public-sector union ahead of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the AFL-CIO and a flock of new Republican groups in campaign spending.

The 1.6 million-member AFSCME is spending a total of $87.5 million on the elections after tapping into a $16 million emergency account to help fortify the Democrats’ hold on Congress. Last week, AFSCME dug deeper, taking out a $2 million loan to fund its push. The group is spending money on television advertisements, phone calls, campaign mailings and other political efforts, helped by a Supreme Court decision that loosened restrictions on campaign spending.

And, uncharacteristically, WSJ is underselling the trend.  The true figure for public employee union spending is at least $171.5 million, since SEIU and NEA surely count.  And those are just organizations in the top 5.

It’s a bizarre cycle, really.  Government is far and away the biggest employer in this country.  And that makes government employees the largest and most motivated voting block.  While government’s role in most of our lives is somewhat hidden, it’s these people’s livelihood.  As distasteful as people might find big business getting together to engage in rent seeking, it’s much better than people who make their living off the taxpayer working to elect people who will keep shoveling money their way.

While there’s something to the myth of the government bureaucrat getting paid for doing next to nothing, their number includes members of the armed forces, foreign service, intelligence community, teachers, and others who do vital and important work.   My dad drew a DoD paycheck most of his working life and I’ve worked for the military and state universities.  And, surely, these people have every right to vote and to organize to elect candidates who will work to enact their views into public policy.

But there is nonetheless something unsettling about having our employees organizing to extract more money from us. (Outside the Lines)

So that’s why the Unions and the Liberals were so mad about the Supreme Court decision that allows companies to have a voice. It was treading on their turf.

Gee, I guess that was “fair”. 🙂

And some of that money they are spending is undoubtedly the taxpayer-funded bailouts of the unions.

The union is spending heavily this year because “a lot of people are attacking public-sector workers as the problem,” said AFSCME President Gerald McEntee. “We’re spending big. And we’re damn happy it’s big. And our members are damn happy it’s big—it’s their money,” he said.

Well, isn’t that special. 🙂

“The president has been crystal clear that third-party groups which spend tens of millions of dollars from anonymous sources are a threat to our democracy—regardless of which candidates they support,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest. He said these groups are disproportionately backing Republican candidates.

[AFSCME]

Yeah, That’s Liberal math for you. No wonder the kids today are so poor at it.

But don’t expect the liberal socialist Ministry of Truth to care, by the way.

You won’t see this on ABC,NBC,CBS, or CNN and certainly MSDNC would have to commit seppuku if it mentioned it.

I’m sad to report today a death of a good friend to all of us…..Journalism, the once esteemed 4th estate of our nation and the protector of our freedoms and a watchdog of our rights has passed away after a long struggle with a crippling and debilitating disease of acute dishonesty aggravated by advanced laziness and the loss of brain function.-Governor Mike Huckabee

During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. —George Orwell

And this is the truth, like it or not! 🙂

Uncle Sam Getting Fat

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter. And those who matter don’t mind. ~Dr. Seuss

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Government’s role in the economy has reached an unprecedented scale by at least one measure.

A record 30 cents of every dollar in personal income comes directly from government, Commerce Department data show.

And since government produces nothing and gets it money from you and me (the private sector) and there is now 47% of the people who don’t pay taxes at all and One in six Americans receives some form of government aid because of effects of the recession that started in 2007, a review of data indicates.

More than 50 million people are on Medicaid, a program principally designed to help the poor, and nearly 10 million Americans receive unemployment benefits, USA Today said Monday in a report based on data from state officials.

“Virtually every Medicaid director in the country would say that their current enrollment is the highest on record,” said Vernon Smith of Health Management Associates, a company that compiles data for the Kaiser Family Foundation.

More than 40 million people now receive food stamps, a jump of nearly 50 percent since the recession began, the report said. The unemployment rate in the United States remains above 9 percent.

You have more people dependent on less people for more money! 😦

But don’t worry, this was the “Summer of Recovery” and everything is fine. It just needs more time , according to our Harvard Educated Academic Elites — aka the Obama boys and girls.

And they just need to explain it better and suddenly you’ll have an epiphany and see how wonderful they are! 🙂
Including transfer payments (income support and health insurance benefits) and compensation to public employees, government paid out $3.8 trillion of $12.5 trillion in total personal income in July on an annualized basis.

And remember their “urgent” August bailout of state workers for  $26 billion was supposed to be partially paid by cuts in Food Stamps in 2014 (when the Health Care Mandate is set to kick in).

So if they just explain better how their Wimpy “I’ll bailout you today for a payment in 4 years” economics work for you, you’ll suddenly fall madly in love with them and bask in their greatness. 🙂

That 30.3% share of personal income compares to 25.5% before the recession and 23.5% in 2000. The level topped 27% in the wake of the 1991 recession and hit a prior peak of 28% in 1975.

So government workers personal income has risen 7.5 % SINCE the recession started (and Congress was taken over by Democrats in 2007). And you’re on the hook for it. Doesn’t that make you happy?

The government’s record share reflects the dismal state of private wages and the ramping of federal transfer payments from a historically high base.

“The private economy has been put through the wringer and thus policymakers have been working hard to fill the hole,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics.

Real private wages remain 8.4% below their December 2007 level and just 1.3% above their February bottom. That low was a level first reached in March 2001.

The weakness in private wages reflects deep layoffs and shorter workweeks due to the recession, and the “not terribly robust” prior economic expansion, said Josh Feinman, chief economist at Deutsche Asset Management in the Americas.

Meanwhile, government income payments are up 17% in real terms since the start of the recession. The real mover has been transfer payments, which accounted for a record 18.4% of personal income in July. That’s up by nearly half from 12.7% in 2000 and more than a quarter from 14.4% in 2007.

The growth is a combination of the inexorable rise of spending on Social Security and health care entitlement programs, as well as a spike in unemployment compensation, food stamps and Medicaid due to weak labor markets and expanded benefits included in the Recovery Act.

Real personal income less government transfer payments remains 5.5% below its December 2007 peak, yet real disposable income is up 2.7% since the start of the recession. That’s due to increases in government income payments and lower tax payments.

Too Much To Get Out?

The government’s role in supporting the recovery is already raising questions about how the economy will fare as the crutches are removed.

“Given how significant its role has become, it does make it more difficult for the government to exit out in a graceful way,” Zandi said.
The stimulus has already begun to fade, with more than a million unemployed exhausting jobless benefits of up to 99 weeks.

Zandi says even further government stimulus would be prudent, given the current slowdown.

In addition to tax cuts and spending hikes, another option would be a government-led mortgage refinancing push to make low-rate loans available to those with insufficient equity in their homes to qualify.

“To have a meaningful recovery, the private sector has to step back up to the plate,” Feinman said.

In prior recoveries, policy stimulus and inventory building eventually allowed for a handoff to a healing private sector, he says.

That handoff “is just not happening” said Feinman. He expects “a long climb back.”

The one area of private compensation that is growing, nonsalary benefits, is not as helpful as wage growth, which puts cash in people’s pockets, Zandi notes.

Real nonsalary compensation (private and government) is up 4.1%, likely reflecting rising health care costs and perhaps some catchup pension contributions.

During the Great Depression, when fiscal stabilizers and safety nets were in their infancy, the government’s share of personal income peaked at just over 16%. Even in World War II, when the government payroll ballooned, its share only briefly neared 25%, falling back below 20% until the 1960s.

The share of personal income is an incomplete gauge of government’s economic role because it doesn’t include direct spending. A better, though imperfect, measure would be the combined federal, state and local government budgets as a share of gross domestic product.

By this score, government was far bigger during World War II, when the federal budget alone topped 43% of GDP. While state and local figures are out of date, total government spending probably will be around 40% of GDP this year. (IBD)

And Obama & Co’s solution, they want to spend more money and still raise taxes on 1/1/11.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

But that’s what happens when you’re in an ideological ditch and you can’t get out.

So bring out the talking points:

“In the month I took office, we were losing 750,000 jobs a month,” the president said. “This morning, new figures show the economy produced 67,000 private sector jobs in August, the eighth consecutive month of private job growth.  Additionally, the numbers for July were revised upward to 107,000. Now that’s positive news, and it reflects the steps we’ve already taken to break the back of this recession.”

The net job loss for August is largely because of the layoffs of 114,000 Census temporary workers.

When May’s job numbers showed a net increase of 431,000 jobs – 411,000 of which were Census jobs — the president did note that “most of these jobs this month that we’re seeing in the statistics represent workers who’ve been hired to complete the 2010 census.” But in those June 4 remarks the president didn’t detail just how many of the 431,000 jobs were Census jobs – 95% of them — and he cited the overall report, and its deceptively large number as evidence that businesses are “starting to hire again. Workers who were laid off, they’re starting to get their jobs back. Companies that were almost forced to close their doors are making plans to expand and invest in new equipment.” (ABC)

So you can have you’re cake and eat it too! So Let them Eat Cake! 🙂

…and said he would “in the weeks ahead” be detailing “further steps to create jobs and keep the economy growing, including extending tax cuts for the middle class and investing in the areas of our economy where the potential for job growth is greatest.”

And judging from past performance that means more government jobs and more bailouts for states and unions.

Yeah, that’s the ticket…:(

Asked to what degree he regrets his administration’s decision to call this Recovery Summer, the president stammered then said, “I don’t regret the notion that we are moving forward, but because of the steps that we’ve taken.  And I’m going to have a press conference next week, where, after you guys are able to hear where we’re at, we’ll be able to answer some specific questions.” (ABC)

Oh god, he’s going to EXPLAIN IT AGAIN! Just in case you were too stupid to understand it every other time he’s said it! 😦

If he just explains it repeatedly enough you’ll get it. 🙂

And it could have been so much worse. 🙂

“This is what change looks like,” Obama said on signing into law the Health Care Cram down Bill.

So in November, we have to show HIM what change looks like then we have change ourselves too because they are the pimps, and we are the ho’s.  So we have to take them out of the drug dealing business and we have to stop using them.

Narcissism 101

You have to see this: Ray Stevens “Come to The USA” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WgOHOHKBEqE

******

USATODAY:

Paychecks from private business shrank to their smallest share of personal income in U.S. history during the first quarter of this year, a USA TODAY analysis of government data finds.

At the same time, government-provided benefits — from Social Security, unemployment insurance, food stamps and other programs — rose to a record high during the first three months of 2010.

Those records reflect a long-term trend accelerated by the recession and the federal stimulus program to counteract the downturn. The result is a major shift in the source of personal income from private wages to government programs.

The trend is not sustainable, says University of Michigan economist Donald Grimes. Reason: The federal government depends on private wages to generate income taxes to pay for its ever-more-expensive programs. Government-generated income is taxed at lower rates or not at all, he says. “This is really important,” Grimes says.

The recession has erased 8 million private jobs. Even before the downturn, private wages were eroding because of the substitution of health and pension benefits for taxable salaries.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that individuals received income from all sources — wages, investments, food stamps, etc. — at a $12.2 trillion annual rate in the first quarter.

Key shifts in income this year:

• Private wages. A record-low 41.9% of the nation’s personal income came from private wages and salaries in the first quarter, down from 44.6% when the recession began in December 2007.

Government benefits. Individuals got 17.9% of their income from government programs in the first quarter, up from 14.2% when the recession started. Programs for the elderly, the poor and the unemployed all grew in cost and importance. An additional 9.8% of personal income was paid as wages to government employees.

The shift in income shows that the federal government’s stimulus efforts have been effective, says Paul Van de Water, an economist at the liberal Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

“It’s the system working as it should,” Van de Water says. Government is stimulating growth and helping people in need, he says. As the economy recovers, private wages will rebound, he says.

Economist Veronique de Rugy of the free-market Mercatus Center at George Mason University says the riots in Greece over cutting benefits to close a huge budget deficit are a warning about unsustainable income programs.

Economist David Henderson of the conservative Hoover Institution says a shift from private wages to government benefits saps the economy of dynamism. “People are paid for being rather than for producing,” he says.

So the majority of people’s wages and earnings come from the government.

47% of the people don’t even pay taxes (according to the IRS).

And governments don’t produce anything.

Governments have no money except what they take from you.

And now a majority of the American people are on the government dole.

So do you think they will vote to kiss their own butts or worry about their “grand children”??

Narcissism is a 21st Century epidemic.

What do you think? 😦

Obama’s “laser beam focus” on jobs has produced what exactly?

Nothing.

The better question is, was it supposed to create anything, but smoke?

No.

SEIU, Service Workers International Union,  the largest Government Union of Government employees.

The same people who have been used as thugs and intimidators before by the LEFT.

On May 16, Washington, D.C., police escorted 14 busloads full of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) members at least part of the way to storm the Chevy Chase, Md., home of Bank of America’s deputy legal counsel, Greg Baer.

Some 500 protestors affiliated with SEIU and their allies in the community organizing group National Political Action (NPA) trampled his lawn, blocked his doorway to his home and screamed “greed.” Legally, it was burglary, trespassing and, possibly, assault.

But Maryland cops didn’t enforce the law. And Baer had to brave the insult-hurling mob alone to rescue his 14-year old son who, home alone, had locked himself in the bathroom in fear.

SEIU spokesman Stephen Lerner response was chilling: “People in powerful corporations seem to think they can insulate themselves from the damage they are doing,”

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised. Aggressive, personalized protests have been a fact of life in the world of unions and community organizers influenced by the radical philosophy of Saul Alinsky.

But they’re now growing in frequency as SEIU officials top the White House visitors’ list and union influence grows.

It started in earnest last year, when SEIU thugs gave a “beat down” to a black trinket seller at a tea party protest — with no consequences.

It also was seen when the SEIU teamed up with its community-organizing ally Acorn to set up bus harassment tours of AIG executives’ homes during last year’s insurance bailout.

In recent weeks in New York and Washington, SEIU and NPA protestors invaded and shut down banks, frightening customers.

What’s important here is that these mobs act with near impunity and lash out at critics like Easton. What Stern calls “the persuasion of power” is identical to the violent means of maintaining political order in Cuba and Venezuela.

It’s going full blast in the U.S. now as the party in power loses popularity. That’s a bad sign that democracy itself is under attack. (IBD)

So the government has less money coming in, because private wages pay taxes with their own money, unlike a government person.

Less than half of the people in this country pay taxes at all.

The Government unions, which make a majority of Union membership in this country, are used as Alinsky-inspired thugs.

The Private sector is demonized and intimidated.

The American People who objected are “racists”, “terrorists”,”teabaggers”,”nazis”, “heartless”,”cruel”,”mean” et al.

Oh, and Congressmen want to bail out the Unions, yet again!

That’s what the Stimulus last year was all about.

But now the Unions’ unsustainable pensions (you know the ones where you can retire at 50 and make more money in retirement than you did working!) are failing so the Democrats have to bail them out, with our money.

From that dwindling pot of non-government incestuous money.

Meanwhile, 8 Million jobs evaporated under Obama.

Medicare is bankrupt.

Social Security is bankrupt.

But yet, Democrats pass the largest entitlement in a generation, The Health Care bill.

Fascinating…

But The Unions get stronger and stronger.

Union are very zealously Democrats.

Funny That. 😦

A Democratic senator (Sen. Bob Casey D-PA,reportedly) 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.

It’s hard to say at the moment what the chances are that the bill will pass. A hearing is scheduled Thursday, which will give the public a sense of where political leaders sit on the topic, said Willis.

Just last week President Obama said there would be no more bailouts.

So that’s why we also have a bailout for the National Education Association- The Teacher’s Union:

Yet another example of public sector employee union smash and grab, at a time when private sector workers are desperate for jobs:

The Obama administration on Thursday threw its support behind a $23 billion measure intended to avert large-scale teacher layoffs, urging Congress to include the effort in a spending bill lawmakers are drafting to fund wartime costs and other urgent needs.

“We are gravely concerned that ongoing state and local budget challenges are threatening hundreds of thousands of teacher jobs for the upcoming school year,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan wrote in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

Duncan added: “These budget cuts would also undermine the groundbreaking reform efforts under way in states and districts all across the country.”

What’s particularly galling about this is that a huge chunk of the stimulus is already devoted to education funding. In particular, the $53.6 billion State Fiscal Stabilization Fund, included $39.5 billion for local school districts to prevent teacher layoffs and program cuts. Further, it’s notortiously difficult to fire incompetent teachers, thanks to union strictures. Los Angeles Unified School District spent $3.5 million just to fire seven bad teachers out of over 33,000 on the payroll. And we’re supposed to prop them up?

And there’s talk about eliminating Summer School in many places!

And in the UK, they are some schools to provide 3 meals a day!

But we have to give the NEA a bailout!

So no more bailouts, unless it’s a Union, because they are big Democrats.

So we will bail out Unions, But demonize private business as “greedy”

No wonder Liberals are always going on about Illegal Aliens who pay taxes, because they themselves don’t! 😦

Liberals complain about “greedy” corporations, but they themselves are very “greedy” with everyone else’s money. 😦

The world is truly upside down and bass ackwards.

And the Liberals want it that way.

We are from the Government and we are here to help you. 😦