Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Another city goes bankrupt...thanks to public sector unions

San Bernadino, California (or as some locals would say, San Berdoo) is on the verge of seeking protection under section 9 of the bankruptcy laws in California as a severe cash flow crunch almost halted payroll checks in the month of June.  City officials are on the brink of filing for bankruptcy because they knew that July's payroll would simply not be met owing to the crushing burden that public sector union benefits had on San Bernadino's financial situation.

This list of bankrupt cities is getting longer.  And there is no end in sight to municipal bankruptcy filings.  California leads the pack in these filings, since their public unions have been running amok for decades in their demands for opulent retirement packages for 52 year old employees, free health benefits and the like.  They now have sucked their communities completely dry.   Now, with benefit checks in doubt pending a court sorting out the mess that these unions have created, these young 52 year old union retirees are up in arms.

"We had a deal!!," they scream.  Yes, their public sector union thug leaders coerced unsustainable agreements over the years from hapless city politicians, who were successfully able to kick the can down the road for decades in sustaining these unsustainable agreements, but unfortunately for these angry retirees, the days of wine and roses are over.

Chicago, Illinois is speeding headlong into this same downward spiral, and an angry 52 year old retired paramedic shouted these very sentiments to a Chicago talk radio show the other day, screaming that he planned his whole life around these agreements, and if somebody wants to change things now, they will have to deal with him face to face.

Face to face.  With a screaming retiree demanding money.  And that is the only way that these young 52 year old retirees are going to keep the checks rolling: ultimately demanding payment while screaming at anyone who has ('their') money from the barrel of a gun.  They seem to understand that when the municipality stops sending checks because there is no more money, that somebody has to be forced to pay, whether they want to or not.  And that would be the funders of the municipality: us.  You and me. 

In the long run, if these public sector employee unions are not reigned in from their terrorism of our cities, towns and counties, we will be facing armed bands of union retirees demanding money from us.  And if we don't pony up, there will be consequences.

Which side of this issue are YOU?  The end of the road is in sight, and that can can no longer get kicked down the road. 


Silverfiddle said...

... a 52 year old retiree... What's wrong with this picture?

Here's something right up you ally. California: America without Republicans:


innominatus said...

I don't know that there is a "side" to take. That which cannot be sustained, won't be sustained. Period.

I'm just glad I live in such a reasonable and well-managed state. :/

Fredd said...


My sister-in-law just retired after 30 years teaching in a Texas public school system.

She's 53. I can't talk about 'this picture' with her, obviously, but simply wonder where she and the brother in law will sleep in our home when their pension fund no longer sends the checks: the basement or over the garage.

Fredd said...

Inno: or put another way, when there ain't no money, there ain't no money.

It ain't hard to cypher...and your sarcastic note about the political paradise on earth that is Oregon, I completely understand.

Kid said...

Fredd, Let's Start Here

Next, I will say I don't have a lot of problem with public union individuals who signed a contract in good faith, with the full intention of doing the job to the best of their ability and to serve the community.

Everyone has to work somewhere and get a paycheck except for the Triple D Losers (Dumb, Dependent, and Democrat).

But as groups, I totally reject the idea that they can hold themselves immune to any and all economic conditions and collective bargain raises and bennie increases just as if the economy was firing on all 12.

That's BS.

Additionally, these public unions have played the sympathy violin so long I think the strings are finally starting to break. Women (mostly) voting time and time again to save the Poor police, the Poor firefighters and the Poor teachers.
Especially when most of the increases go to the top dogs anyway. per the fist linked article I posted.

It's now a completely broken system. Even if the unions didn't steal the pension money, the pension was planned as based on a stock market that goes up 8-10% a year without fail year after year. Just like clinton's Surplus was based on the biggest bubble in the stock market to not only get bigger, but last forever!

The whole thing is broke. You can't get money from a turnip and turnip is where we are now. Most pros don't believe there are any meaningful tricks left in Bearded Ben Bernanke's bag.
A lot of people are going to get screwed.

Non public union people have been getting screwed year after year for a few decades, now it's all gonna be payback is a bitch time and hit them all at once.
Not gonna be pretty. I hope a lot of union bosses and top dogs go to jail.

The Conservative Lady said...

Can you say "Greece"?

Fredd said...


Of course you're right (as usual). The world is a tough place, and for these thieves to shield themselves from ever having to cut back, under any circumstances, is just nuts.

It is partly our (the forlorn tax payers) fault as well, electing these lilly livered politicians at all levels of government that agreed to these outrageous public union benefits.

Now that the chickens are coming home to roost, looking for blood in our huge turnip patch, there's a reckoning at hand.

Fredd said...


Greece's situation is exactly the same one we face. When the average Greek works a 28 hour week, two months a year paid vacation, opulent retirement at age 50, simply unsustainable by any civilization.

And they are rioting in the streets because the checks stopped coming. San Bernardino retirees, take notice. Ditto Stockton, Vallejo, and other California cesspools of sloth.