Ruling on Chuck Reed’s pension initiative not end of the world

Ruling on Chuck Reed’s pension initiative not end of the world

chuck.reedEditor’s update, 2 p.m.: San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is reportedly suspending the initiative push until 2016 because the court delays related to the ballot language challenge will make it difficult for signature gatherers to meet deadlines — not because of the ballot language the court said he must use.

A state judge’s ruling upholding the unappealing ballot initiative title and summary given to a badly needed pension reform measure triggered a lot of gloom Thursday from those who want to slow California’s slide toward ruin. But it’s not necessarily the end of the world.

Here’s a bit of the Sac Bee’s account:

“A Superior Court judge dealt San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed’s pension overhaul campaign another setback on Thursday, rebuffing Reed’s request to have the ballot initiative’s title and summary rewritten.

“Reed and other public officials sued Attorney General Kamala Harris last month, arguing that her description of Reed’s pension initiative, which would empower local governments to change future pension benefits for current workers, was fatally biased.

“The sentence in dispute states that the measure ‘Eliminates constitutional protections for vested pension and retiree healthcare benefits for current public employees, including teachers, nurses, and peace officers, for future work performed.’ Reed and his allies said in their lawsuit that description was ‘false and misleading’ in a way that ‘creates prejudice’ against the measure.

“Not so, said Sacramento Superior Court Judge Allen Sumner. Going through the contested sentence word by word, Sumner found ‘nothing false or misleading’ about how Harris described Reed’s measure.”

It’s not 2004 — pension crisis has sunk in

I dispute the conventional wisdom that invoking “teachers, nurses and peace officers” is super-compelling to stopping voters from voting for pension reform.

Despite opposition from “teachers, nurses and peace officers,” sweeping pension reform measures passed easily in San Jose and San Diego in 2012.

It’s not 2004 still. People understand the crisis is real and is affecting other government priorities in a negative way. Take it away, Washington Post:

“SAN JOSE — Here in the wealthy heart of Silicon Valley, the roads are pocked with potholes, the libraries are closed three days a week and a slew of city recreation centers have been handed over to nonprofit groups. Taxes have gone up even as city services are in decline, and Mayor Chuck Reed is worried.

“The source of Reed’s troubles: gold-plated pensions that guarantee retired city workers as much as 90 percent of their former salaries. Retirement costs are eating up nearly a quarter of the city’s budget, forcing Reed (D) to skimp on everything else.

“’This is one of the dichotomies of California: I am cutting services to my low- and moderate-income people . . . to pay really generous benefits for public employees who make a good living and have an even better retirement,’ he said in an interview in his office overlooking downtown.

“In San Jose and across the nation, state and local officials are increasingly confronting a vision of startling injustice: Poor and middle-class taxpayers — who often have no retirement savings — are paying higher taxes so public employees can retire in relative comfort.”

‘Maviglium’ will bomb at box office

mavigliumOnce again, this is the liberal Washington Post’s framing of the issue, not Fox’s Sean Hannity.

I hope the hard work by Reed (no relation) pays off with the initiative making the ballot. If it does, it will pass, barring a 10-1 edge for the status quo-ers in campaign spending.

“Elysium” was a bomb at the box office. “Maviglium” will be,too.


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  1. Donkey
    Donkey 14 March, 2014, 07:25

    If the non-RAGWUS citizens come out to vote this proposition will win. IF they receive the information that their children are being enslaved by the RAGWUS feeders it will be a landslide at the ballot box! 🙂

    Reply this comment
  2. Ted Steele, Manager
    Ted Steele, Manager 14 March, 2014, 08:34

    The Ted System is so glad that yet another sensible ruling employing sound stare decicis and settled law will guide the process. That the judge employs truth and common sense seems to rattle some.

    Reply this comment
  3. Queeg
    Queeg 14 March, 2014, 08:59

    Power To The People!

    Reply this comment
  4. billyBS
    billyBS 14 March, 2014, 10:11

    Some posters gloat in raising a middle finger toast to their children and grandchildren. Perhps the little ones will gloat in the blowback: Euthanasia.
    A bottle of Cristal, a toast to Grandpa, “Peace, Justice, No Mercy.”

    Reply this comment
  5. Tough Love
    Tough Love 14 March, 2014, 10:19

    The initiative wording said … “Eliminates constitutional protections for vested pension and retiree healthcare benefits for current public employees, including teachers, nurses, and peace officers, for future work performed.”

    And Sacramento Superior Court Judge Allen Sumner, going through the contested sentence WORD BY WORD, found ‘nothing false or misleading’ about how Harris described Reed’s measure.

    Well, how about not concentrating on WORD BY WORD, but just writing in proper English, by putting the words “future work performed” where they really belonged, by saying …..?

    “Eliminates, for future work performed, the constitutional protections for vested pension and retiree healthcare benefits for current public employees, including teachers, nurses, and peace officers.”

    Unquestionably, that’s better English, but the judge’s agenda (as part of the cabal to maintain these grossly excessive pensions even for FUTURE Service) would not have been well served by doing so.

    Reply this comment
  6. SkippingDog
    SkippingDog 14 March, 2014, 10:58

    Ah, the wingnut chagrin and denial of reality is strong today.

    Reply this comment
    • Donkey
      Donkey 14 March, 2014, 13:44

      The reality is that RAGWUS feeders greed is going to bring about a change to your pension by the young that you believed would pay for it Skdog!! 🙂

      Reply this comment
      • SkippingDog
        SkippingDog 14 March, 2014, 20:28

        That doesn’t appear to be the case, Donkey. You’ll be paying far higher taxes in the near future to pay your own share of the pension debt, so it’s time you got to work.

        Reply this comment
        • Donkey
          Donkey 15 March, 2014, 08:56

          I can not fathom how police officers like you Skdog can not wake up and realize you are the problem. Greed and power really is all consuming. 🙂

          Reply this comment
          • SkippingDog
            SkippingDog 15 March, 2014, 10:49

            I spent years risking my own hide to make sure you could sleep comfortably each night in your own bed with relatively little risk that anyone would violently disrupt your slumber or your life. I was shot at directly at least three times, attacked with a box cutter, and even received some modest recognition for personally rescuing someone from a burning building and someone from an overturned and burning vehicle on the freeway.

            During that time, I earned a graduate degree and watched my classmates graduate to beginning salaries that were double what I was earning after years of service to you and others whose only interest was how little they could get away with paying for the basic services of keeping them safe from the predators of our world.

            Nobody spends their career in government service to get rich, but it’s nice that we’ve managed to obtain decent pension benefits along the way. The only evidence of unchecked greed and the lust for power is among those of you who believe a few dollars of your taxes are too much to pay for the generally professional and uncorrupted services you receive every day. You’re the problem.

          • Donkey
            Donkey 15 March, 2014, 20:24

            Taken right out of your Police magazine there Skdog!

            I did more in my one year stent as a 7/11 clerk.

            You are so clouded by LE propaganda, the greed you suffer from keeps you from being lucid.

            Was that graduate degree in propaganda? 🙂

          • Ted Steele, CEO
            Ted Steele, CEO 19 March, 2014, 07:05

            police mag ? Are u ok Duncey? Get your GED yet?

  7. Mr. Bubble
    Mr. Bubble 14 March, 2014, 15:26

    “Maviglium” must be a strange planet–on Earth govt. pensions don’t always last forever because if the city goes bankrupt then pensions get reduced. Ask some firemen in Detroit who kept 90% of their pensions but didn’t get to keep their health insurance. That movie poster reminds me of the short docu on the Blu-Ray of “Gravity”. Ed Harris narrates a piece on space debris–it’s a problem like pensions and global warming. It’s hard to do anything about it but if you don’t then the problem only gets worse. Collisions and accidents in space create thousands of pieces of debris that will remain in orbit forever.

    Reply this comment
  8. S Moderation Douglas
    S Moderation Douglas 14 March, 2014, 22:44

    Reminds me of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

    If they’d put all the money they’re wasting on lawsuits and campaigns into the pension fund, that would solve half their problem.

    Reply this comment
  9. SeeSaw
    SeeSaw 15 March, 2014, 00:21

    billyBS, that is disgusting! I love my children and grandchildren and vice versa. Children and grandchildren are the main beneficiaries of the pensions that their parents and grandparents have worked hard to earn. You can all go back to your knitting now.

    Reply this comment
  10. Ted Steele, CEO
    Ted Steele, CEO 15 March, 2014, 07:16

    SeeSaw– It is clear to the Ted Clinic ™ that Billybob is merely self loathing and projecting the reality that his children and grandchildren never visit him in the bunker. Alot of these patients have similar stories.

    Reply this comment
  11. skippingdog
    skippingdog 17 March, 2014, 10:34

    Donkey – If you’re the least bit honest, you know the only “action” you ever saw as a 7-11 clerk was out behind the dumpster.

    Reply this comment
  12. billyBS
    billyBS 17 March, 2014, 12:35

    Skipping Dog, You sound like Archie(All in the family) lecturing his son-in-law about what he did in the “big One” that the son in law did not aprreciate. My Dad would laugh, his service in the Pacific(42-45) was something he never talked about.
    America laughed at the braggart in Archie. MOst of the veterans were humble, didn’t expect much, and were like my Dad. I think we know how the son-in-law ended up. Look in the mirror, Meathead.

    Reply this comment
    • Ted Steele, Manager
      Ted Steele, Manager 17 March, 2014, 13:22

      Billbs—- You can’t even allow Skip the honest fruit of honest risky labor?

      You are sad little buddy– just sad.

      Reply this comment
    • Skippingdog
      Skippingdog 17 March, 2014, 20:59

      billyBS – Donkey and I go back a long way now, so it remains my prerogative to remind him of the true costs paid for the benefits I receive from time to time. Under normal circumstances, I personally follow your father’s example. My father, also a WWII veteran of D-Day and the battle for France was much the same way about his experiences. On the other hand, nobody was attempting to remove or reduce the benefits he received as a result of his service.

      If you folks want to attack our pensions and benefits, you should expect to be regularly reminded of why we receive them.

      Reply this comment
      • Ted Steele, CEO
        Ted Steele, CEO 19 March, 2014, 07:07

        Wow– well said Skip D—- I guess our Dad’s fought for a Constitution that contains promises.

        Reply this comment
      • Donkey
        Donkey 20 March, 2014, 05:11

        Funny that you would bring up D-Day. The actions of that day was to elicit the freedom of people from a tyrannical group of government workers, much like a RAGWUS feeder. 🙂

        Reply this comment
        • SkippingDog
          SkippingDog 20 March, 2014, 23:00

          Nice job, Donkster! Now you’re comparing police officers, firefighters, and other civil servants to the Nazi army that invaded and occupied France? You really have slipped a cog or two.

          Reply this comment
  13. billyBS
    billyBS 17 March, 2014, 16:20

    Reasonable pensions are praiseworthy. 3% guarantees with little or minimal cost to the employee is unsustainable. $97k pensions for school administrators are senseless. We are in a Brave New World. Prescription meds fulfillment for an individual can in the near future be shut down nationally in an instant with the ACA, and today’s relational data base sophistication. There will be a cost-benefit analysis before your prescription is ok’d at some point.
    New order: Patient is 19 years on a govt pension where the worker contributions were paid out 15 years ago. This order cost $250. copay $30.
    No fill

    Reply this comment
  14. Ted Steele, CEO
    Ted Steele, CEO 20 March, 2014, 06:51

    Guess you were wrong again Chris.

    Reply this comment

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