Archive for February, 2011

Fortune: Public Unions Scapegoated

First it was Goldman Sachs, and now Fortune online is taking a sensible position on budgets. Do Walker and Boehner realize how far to the right they really are?

Unionized workers didn’t sow the seeds of the economic downturn, deregulation of the financial industry did,” says Robert Bruno, a University of Illinois professor of labor and employment relations. “We’ve suffered billions in losses because of greed, gross mismanagement and illegal activity in the financial industry.”

“Unions are an easy target because the largest cost in a state budget is always labor,” says Bruno, who studies employee and union issues. “Why are we scapegoating teachers? Is the American love affair with capitalism so irrational that it knows no bounds?”

Amen, dude.

Two Comix

A couple of excellent pieces from my two new favorite webcomics, Three Word Phrase

… and The Gun Show.

Goldman Sachs Opposes Federal GOP Budget

Dude, when Goldman Sachs opposes your conservative spending-slash-and-burn budget bill, you know you’re off the right-wing cliff edge.

A $61.5 billion spending-cut bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on Saturday would slow economic growth significantly this year, according to an analysis by the global investment firm Goldman Sachs.

Scott Walker’s Lies: #7,981(?): Pensions

Thanks to Pulitzer-Prize winning reporter David Cay Johnston for explaining the truth about how we public employees actually pay for our own pensions, despite what you may have heard from Scott Walker.

Economic nonsense is being reported as fact in most of the news reports on the Wisconsin dispute, the product of a breakdown of skepticism among journalists multiplied by their lack of understanding of basic economic principles.

Gov. Scott Walker says he wants state workers covered by collective bargaining agreements to “contribute more” to their pension and health insurance plans. […] Out of every dollar that funds Wisconsin’ s pension and health insurance plans for state workers, 100 cents comes from the state workers.

How can that be? Because the “contributions” consist of money that employees chose to take as deferred wages – as pensions when they retire – rather than take immediately in cash. The same is true with the health care plan. If this were not so a serious crime would be taking place, the gift of public funds rather than payment for services.

And thanks to Christie for the link.

Quote of the Day: Rumer Godden

via /r/philosophy, from Rumer Godden‘s autobiography A House with Four Rooms:

Each of us is a house with four rooms: a physical, a mental, an emotional, and a spiritual room. We tend to live in one room most of the time; but, unless we go into every room every day, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person.