Public Employee Unions Will Devour Us All
Brewing over the last several years has been the wrenching story of how public employee unions have been bleeding all of us try with defined benefit pensions that allow them to retire at full pay by around age 50 and average base salaries and Cadillac benefits packages that have by now bested the private sector. I’m reading Steven Greenhut’s Plunder!, which outlines the whole scheme in in sickening detail. (Incidentally, when I went to buy this book at Barnes & Noble a month after it was released, they didn’t have it available either on the shelves or online, and when I asked for assistance, I was told their system reported it being “out of print.” I told him what the book was about, and he suggested—not I!—that it may be due to some insidious union influence.)
Anyway, it occurred to me while reading through the book after having watched and/or listed to most of the state of the union speech: why does Obama so doggedly assail the voluntary private employee compensation arrangements on “Wall Street” (I’ve never been there, but from my President’s reports, I understand it is located in the hot place somewhere beneath the earth’s crust), although he never, never, ever attacks the thoroughly corrupt public union employee compensation arrangements? These are the ones that are truly bankrupting us.
UPDATE: Continuing to read through Plunder! only reinforces this fact, and makes Obama’s red-faced puffery over Wall Street all the more insulting. This is why demagoguery is immoral and not just a part of politics: it is the seizing of momentary, irrational impressions concerning the cause of certain social or economic problems and exploiting it to galvanize support for personal policy objectives. And it is an abdication of doing the real work of government, such as sniffing out the abuses of minority groups, like the public employee unions, who have seized control of the public treasury. When your truffle pig refuses to hunt for truffles, it’s time to make bacon out of him.