Badgers saving billions

Now here's a scenario to discuss. What would have happened in Wisconsin if big union had gotten it's way? Well we could speculate that it would have the opposite of this report-Act 10, which curbed collective bargaining for most unionized public employees, in the whole has saved taxpayers more than $1 billion, according to The Economic Impacts of the Wisconsin Budget Repair Act. The study is slated for release this week by Beacon Hill Institute, a prominent free market think tank.

What the analysis found is that without the law, which in part requires covered public employees to contribute more to their benefits and holds wage increases to the rate of inflation, Badger State governments would have been forced to raise taxes or make deep job cuts to meet budget expenses.

As it was, Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled Legislature pushed through reforms and reductions that filled a $3.6 billion budget shortfall, although organized labor asserts Republicans balanced the budget on the backs of public employees.

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What would have happened? One word: California.

I have personally witnessed how special interests can run a state and what happens. It's quite sad. The state has turned into a dog eat dog situation.


From what I had been reading at the time, union members were willing to pay more toward their health care and other benefits anyway. Walker could very well have had a lot of the same results if he had worked with the unions instead of going after their bargaining ability. That is if his results are true.

Actually a lot of Walker's "accomplishments" have been questioned. Things may not be what he says they are. His job numbers conflict with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and many think he is cooking his numbers.

As for Walker's claim to a budget surplus, an interesting thing happened the other day during a debate with his opponent, Tom Barrett. Barrett accused Walker of using credit to create the so-called surplus, and Walker didn't address it, pretty much ignored it. Walker made a point of avoiding any questions from reporters afterward as well. Doesn't that seem a little funny?

Most public employees want to serve the public for a reasonable rate of compensation. Far too often, too many blame workers for the mismanagement done by administrators, both in the private and public sectors. Wisconsin public employees would have made similar concessions without having their rights taken away, just as they did in Ohio.

Unreasonable people ascribe their own lack of scruples to others. This is so unfair! This entire issue is about being respectful and reasonable. Most common folks are both.

The only rational definition of "reasonable rate of compensation" is what the market sets. But government workers under their corrupt unions are compensated above (often, much above) what the market sets for labor. The labor market has nothing to do with government employees. And that's the real travesty here.

Collective bargaining is an abuse of public financing and it's cost Ohioans hugely throughout its history. The state has an obligation to AVOID funding big salaries, huge benefits and colossal pensions. There is NO justification for the legal force of collective bargaining under the natural laws upon which this nation was founded. NONE AT ALL.

And furthermore, Dale, you don't have the "right" to force your employer to sit at a negotiation table, nor to accept terms laid down there. Collective bargaining is not a right. It's a perversity of our natural liberties (that being the freedom to run your business how you wish) and it's high time we kicked it out of our law books.

You imply that collective bargaining is a one-sided affair. All workers should have the "right" to force employers to "sit at a negotiaion table", but NO workers have the "right" to force management to "accept terms laid down there". Your statement makes it seem as though you have never been at a "negotiation table". I have, and on both sides! It's very much give and take. In the case of Ohio's public employees, in recent years, it has been mostly a case of give and give more, to the tune of over $1 billion via TWO-SIDED negotiations.

When I first started teaching in TPS, I was the only wage earner in my home. On my full salary, we qualified for food stamps and, if our son had been of school age, he would have received a reduced-price lunch. I guess you want college-educated teachers to have salaries that make them working poor, but still want to attract the best and brightest into the profession, and concurrently demand high results for all students no matter what their background, on tests that are standardized for all students! And I want a new car for $1000.00 that runs well for 200,000 miles, and a doctor who charges $10.00 total per visit and never errs, too. As Armond Hammer, one of the world's first billionaires stated, "If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys."

I erred before. It's not ALL about being respectful and reasonable -- which you are not. It's also about good common sense. We were at a high school graduation party just moments ago. The cousin of the graduate is a high school student also. She loves children and always wanted to be a teacher. It is important to add that she is an excellent student. She is planning to go into the health care field because there's more job security, and she can still help children. BTW -- the high school graduate, who graduated with all kinds of academic awards, is also not going into teaching. Why should she? About half of all who start out as teachers, leave within the first 5 years. If teaching were such a "gravy train", such an easy way to make a pile of money, why do so many leave teaching? Why aren't you teaching, GZ?

You're delusional. You don't have the right to make ANYONE sit at a negotiation table. Refusal to negotiate is a natural right. Since you're a Liberal, the concept of a natural right is foreign to you. You love having the government come in and stomp people with money (except yourselves in the Golden Class). For you, the only 'natural right' is MOB RULE.

The only "savings" resulting from recent actions in Ohio is very much like the "savings" you get when a store marks stuff up 50% and then gives you a "MASSIVE 10% OFF SALE!". The system is obscenely expensive from decades of making promises to unionized loons.

The very idea that the TPS is working with the "best and brightest" is so laughable that it's not even worth addressing. The TPS schools are low performers (which is all well documented). Therefore those working there are low performers. But unionized labor never did like the idea of merit-based pay.

There are more than just the "natural rights" spelled out in our founding documents. Some rights are legislated, such as collective bargaining rights. Personally, I don't want the government messing with any of my rights, unalienable or otherwise. Why those on the so-called "right" allow themselves to be used for the bashing of collective bargaining amazes me. Have any of you union haters ever seen this video? Do you know what he is actually saying here?

I'm not a "union hater". I'm a hater of big, expensive government that caters to the Golden Class of heavily over-compensated workers.

I don't care about private unions. I don't support them, and I've never joined one. That's my right. But we've been forced to accept public unions effectively at gunpoint. The government already provided many worker protections, including employment guarantees. So the public unions are just being parasites, and all financial metrics back up that assertion.

It's time to destroy this unholy marriage between unions, Democrats and government. That's all it is and that's what we must do, as citizens and taxpayers.

And you don't read well!
I said that YOU WANT TO ATTRACT the best and the brightest to teach, but YOU PREFER to pay teachers in a way which makes them the working poor. My point was that the "best and the brightest" mostly choose professions where they both receive better remuneration, and are better appreciated. I have also pointed out previously a friend of mine who taught in Toledo's central city and left to teach in Ottawa Hills. He jokes about how much, "I improved as a teacher," when he made the move!

In my own personal experience, for the last several years I was teaching Social Studies, TPS added "Honors" classes in that subject area. I taught the same curriculum, but demanded more outside work from the "honors" students to earn the extra grade point they would receive, Seldom did I have any "Honors" student who failed to pass state standardized tests. Their scores were right up there with those in places like Perrysburg, Maumee, and Sylvania. In actuality, while I enjoyed teaching those classes, it was a greater challenge, and I worked harder, teaching the "regular" classes. That's the reality you ignore. Many of those "Honors" students came from very humble homes, but they were all highly motivated individuals, and they mostly had very supportive parents. No student I taught who wanted to succeed, failed to succeed.

Ask any teacher in a school with high test scores if that person wants to teach central city children in a traditional public school which is not a "magnet" school. Their answer would most likely be, "Are you kidding?" Most of those who teach in the central city work so hard to help their students! And each child who achieves well is such a plus for themselves, their families, and this community. As I stated, you are neither respectful nor reasonable. GZ...why not get on that teaching "Gravy Train"? Blame common working folks for all of society's problems. Don't blame the mostly greedy one per centers. Never, ever, ever!

I prefer that there's an actual MERIT system that determines pay. For the TPS' terrible performance, that means working poor at best. Pay and performance would then match. Want better pay? Well, earn it.

Wait, wait, you already did away with the concept of earning your pay, with your despicable public union. Well, you screwed the pooch so hard with your union that it's all come to a head. Issues are making state-wide ballots, since you've screwed it all up so badly. The issues of parasitical public unions have achieved the level of national commentary.

I hear this "best and brightest" CRAP from you union twerps all the time. And yet, for what we pay you, you perform horribly. Obviously throwing the issue to the free market is what will fix it, one way or another: Either we get the same sorry performance from the system under cheaper outsourcing, or we get improved performance under cheaper outsourcing. It's a no brainer at this point, and I hasten to remind you how we ended up here: Because you screwed it all up. You were a parasite looking to kill the host.

You want teachers to be among the working poor.
And you really don't care if the children, who are our future, have the best and the brightest teaching them or not.
And, of course, calling unions "despicable" and "parasitical" should not lead us to believe that you're anti-union.

You thank me for honesty when you can't be honest yourself? Ironic.

If you perform poorly, then your compensation should be poor, or you should be terminated. If TPS teachers want to be compensated well then perhaps they should be reversing the utter abomination that the system now is, and to start with that, they need to obliterate their anti-change union... before we do it for them.

Public unions are parasites. This isn't an opinion; it's established fact. But from your history, you're not a big fan of established facts.

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