Doc Thompson on 700 WLW covered a topic which demonstrates the epic clash of ideas in our modern-day. There is a man who is circulating a petition to prevent Target, the department store, from opening on Thanksgiving Day; because he’s concerned that it will interfere with his Thanksgiving dinner, since he will have to head in to work early to prepare for the late night opening. My first thought about the man is that he can choose to work for Target or not to. Those are choices within his control. But he does not have a right to alter the business strategy of Target to suit his Thanksgiving dinner. It is his job to alter his schedule around his employment. For Target to open on Thanksgiving is a market driven need. Target’s existence is not employee driven its market driven. That is the key discrepancy of our modern problems. Listen to that broadcast at the video below:
This discussion about Target’s Thanksgiving plans comes as the smoke cleared from the Middletown City Council 4-3 decision to lay-off nine of their firefighters. The money just isn’t there. So the decision was to cut those jobs. What makes the decision worse and more impactful to the community of Middletown is because of Issue 2 being repealed, city council must lay-off the last hired, who also happens to be the cheapest. If Issue 2 would have held, the fire department could have let go of an employee who is just milking their way to retirement, who has obviously declined in performance over the years who might make 80K per year and must instead let go of two firefighters who only make 40K to attack the budget deficit goal. It’s nothing against the older employee, but they are simply too expensive, and if they are not performing at a 80K a year level, they should be let go so the fire department can keep the two firefighters who only make 40K. So Middletown had to cut 9 firefighters to meet their budget demands.
Of course there are more costs associated with these public employees besides just raw wages. At the Lakota School District the No Lakota Levy group figured out that the average employee at Lakota makes over $67 per hour of employment or $130,000 per year by the time all their benefits are factored in, and that is how a savings is made when lay-offs are implemented. The front end salary makes up a huge difference and when that is applied across a workforce of 20 to 200 it adds up to a very large number. Have a look at the math in calculating the public employee costs at Lakota here:
Yes the firefighters showed up like all those other crazy public employees usually do and protested the lay-offs, but they forget that they are not management. They do not have a right to manipulate the management structure. They do have a right to find another job if they don’t like the conditions of employment, but they don’t have a right to scream like a bunch of little children to keep their job, just like the protestor at Target does not have a right to dictate when Target opens for business. Of course members of management hate to do it, nobody likes to lay off a worker, and nobody likes to fire employees, but it’s a reality of any management when the budget dictates. I’ve had to do it more times than I can remember and they all hurt. But when the money isn’t there, that is the grim reality. Check out video and the story from Channel 19 here:
But Middletown isn’t the only city going through this kind of thing. Monroe City Schools is having public meetings to try to figure out what they can do to close a $2.7 million dollar deficit. Monroe is looking to their southern neighbors in Lakota and Mason and seeing the tremendous tax increase resistance going on in those districts and is trying to avoid that same controversy.
Of course the clueless public worker who believes that all the jobs in society were created for their convenience will simply propose that taxes be increased to meet the budget deficits. This is the response at Lakota where the superintendent who is supposed to manage the finances of the district simply stated after the third levy defeat, “But the teachers have already taken a pay freeze.” Well………so much for management letting the employees know how hard-nosed the superintendent will be in reducing costs. Instead of exploring possibilities of approaching the teachers union to reduce their employee costs on the district, which are currently ridiculously high the superintendent says the teachers have accepted a “wage freeze,” as if that were enough! I’ve shown you at the link above how much those Lakota employees cost the taxpayers, and the obvious next step would be to reduce those costs to balance the budget approved by the community. That would be the next step if public workers thought the way the rest of the world does. No, instead, they only know how to lay-off workers or ask for more taxes to pay for their distorted view of reality. Management is virtually non-existent in public service and that’s how everything got out-of-control in the first place to deliver us upon this current crises.
But that’s not all; Cincinnati City Council which is now largely liberal because of the protest vote against supporters of Issue 2 will have to solve a much larger budget gap than they did a year ago. Here’s how it went exactly one year ago when the previous city council attempted to solve their budget problems. Council never solved their problems from then till now. Check out this link!
Postal workers are now protesting the closing down of a sorting station in Cincinnati, because the Postal Service is also broke! They think somehow by their chanting money will magically appear in their budget. They like the Target worker in Doc Thompson’s radio broadcast think that their jobs exist for their livelihoods, not the public they are supposed to serve. It seems beyond their reasoning to conclude that higher taxes to pay for their extraordinary benefits are not an option. Somewhere at some time someone told them that government creates jobs and since they now worked for the government, then they’d be cared for all their lives. Nobody told them that the utopia would collapse on itself when the money ran out and the pension payments were due. The politicians who made those promises are most likely in the Bahamas drinking pina coladas through a straw, living out their lives of looting off the public sector in relative security and comfort. Now all the promises that were made by those thieves are expected to be kept, and that means that some people will have to lose their jobs to fulfill those promises.
I think back to all the commercials that aired during the Issue 2 campaign when it was said that if we wanted to keep our firefighters, our police and our teachers then we needed to repeal Issue 2. People like me declared such statements as an outright lie.
Now, unfortunately people are learning who was telling the truth and who wasn’t, and they’ll come to regret what they’ve done to themselves. Chants, protests, and magic wands will not place money in your pockets and solve the problems. Only good management and strategic thinking will, and those who cling to the old ways will undoubtedly perish in the aftermath.
Things are about to get very, very ugly.