L'Aristocracy de CalPERS

L'Aristocracy de CalPERS

Steven Greenhut: Someone sent me this hilarious video about California’s government royalty. It’s a little long but very, very funny:

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  1. Michele
    Michele 3 December, 2010, 11:28

    As a self-employed person in LA county, this video is how I see LA & California govt. I feel all the pain of the recession, while they feel little pain. I slave away trying to keep up with the utility bills, fees and taxes that rise, while their salaries, jobs and pensions continue.

    When our business came to a halt, I got a job selling luxury cars, from $60K to $200K (and economy cars, starting at $15K or so). Who were my biggest clients for the luxury vehicles? Government employees, many just about to retire and “cash in”. Who did I have to turn away from buying our least expensive cars due to bad credit? Self employed people. And most of my self-employed people went right to the economy cars, while the govt workers went for the luxury vehicles and demanded all the extras – rims, trims and more.

    While many try to push class warfare and divide the wealthy and those who are not, there really are two classes: the govt employees and private industry; the former prospers while the latter suffers.

    As George Orwell stated in “Animal Farm”: Some animals are more equal than others.

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  2. DA
    DA 3 December, 2010, 14:31

    This video unfairly demonizes the wrong people. By and large, government pension recipients had practically no say whatsoever in what their pension arrangement would be.

    I spent 30 years as a career criminal prosecutor. The job paid a very decent living wage, but not enough to classify me as wealthy. Neither the salary nor the pension plan were my prime motivators. In fact, pension benefits are rarely a factor for why any young person takes a job. Being a criminal prosecutor was a great job that I simply loved doing. I spent a whole career never watching the clock. Priceless!

    Back in the 90’s most new Law School graduates received starting salaries in the private sector that paid between $50,000.00 – $80,000.00 more than I was making as a Step IV deputy. I could have run rings around those newbies. In fact, their starting salaries back in the late-90’s would exceed the amount I was earning per year after 30 years with the office. By my most conservative estimate, the difference between what the state paid me for quality professional services over the years and what I could have reasonably made as a schlub in the private sector is somewhere between a low of $2,500,000.00 to a high of about $5,000,000.00. This is not something I begrudge at all. There’s nothing better than a great job.

    I retired recently at age 62. IF I live another 20 years, my pension will get me to within $500,000.00 of the low figure difference. From a cost perspective the State of California has done very well by me, both in services rendered and money saved.

    I am not the bad guy, and perhaps the people who devised the pension plan aren’t so evil either.

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  3. GoneWithTheWind
    GoneWithTheWind 5 December, 2010, 15:45

    There is only one problem with public retirement systems: They do not follow generally accepted accounting principles. The system should be designed to return no more to the retiree then they (and the state on their behalf) contributed to the system plus interest of course. The system should look at the amount of money in the retirees account and set up a sound annuitized return. But politicians used the system to buy votes. They made the system more generous then the dollars in it could support. They set it up to fail knowing full well it would last until they were gone. Most of the retirees in the system do not get huge retirements it is a handfull at the top and the police & firemen who are bankrupting the system. My apologies to police and firemen who are appreciated by all of us but your unions have broken the system and now we will all pay the price.

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