How much do you make? Well, the Wall Street Journal has a link that will allow you to type in your household income and see where you rank among other people in America. Just click on that link to go to the WSJ calculator. (Keep in mind teachers at Lakota make $63K per year on average individually. And cops and firefighters in the same community are pretty close to that number as well)
It also allows you to understand how ridiculous the expectations of public employees are in relation to your own income.
Obviously we have a major cultural problem in this country, which is evident in the State of Ohio over Issue 2. Watching that video I can see clearly the cancerous effects of collectivism and the impact it’s had on the people who have participated in it. These are not the type of people who founded this country, pushed west in westward expansion, and built the foundations which became the greatest country on earth. These are people who have been taught to be parasites on self-reliance, and they are broken beyond repair. This is exceptionally evident in the below video where some union representatives declare they have saved the state billions of dollars in “givebacks” from their proposed contracts. The essences of what they are declaring as a givebacks are items in their contracts that they were promised, but did not collect on. This prompts us to study the nature of these “givebacks” without the distorted lens of organized labor.
In regard to the poll numbers on Issue 2 the difficulty is this, Democrats, who represent a form of collective philosophy anyway, are all together on this issue. They seldom ever have a thought of their own, so this isn’t surprising. Republicans fall into two categories, there are the firm fiscal and social conservatives like myself who are looking to the Tea Party as more representative of their core values, and you have conservatives who are fiscally conservative but socially liberal. Many of these types have used the Republican Party as a networking tool and didn’t have firm beliefs on too many matters to begin with, only when participating in political speak. Two of these types would be Bill Seitz and Bill Cunningham from Southern Ohio, both attorneys who served labor at some point in their careers yet spent much time declaring that someone do something bold in government. Yet that bold thing they never really contemplated, until Senate Bill 5 was passed into law and threatened their understanding of things. So people like this were the first to jump off the ship into that land of neutrality “Can’t we all get along? Can’t we just talk?”
I was at an event the other day where many politicians had gathered. All of them knew both Cunningham and Seitz and we had very animated discussions about them. I offered that I think these guys think public education is all about football scores. They think public education is all about the Friday Night Lights which brings the community together under the banner of sports. The thought of a teachers union doesn’t cross their mind. In Cunningham’s case, the PTA groups and Lakota coaches come into his sports bar in West Chester and ask him, “please support us. You are the only one. Our children’s lives are in jeopardy.” I have a good idea what kind of talk goes on because another sports bar within the Lakota district received the threat of a boycott from one of the principals at Lakota last year working through the PTA organization, which really scared the owner. So much so she came to the No Lakota Levy group for help. The PTA argument was “We will pull our business if you don’t support the Lakota Levy.” So there is no question that similar discussions have taken place with Bill Cunningham who is a businessman first and understands that such a fight would cost him. So it’s easier to just keep focused on those Friday Night Lights, ground everyone can relate with, and ignore all the real problems.
When I say that public employees make too much money, I say that based on what I am willing to pay for them. When listening to the speeches at the beginning of this article, the critical ingredient missing from that discussion is what is the value of these public employees and how much should they make?
Well in regard to West Chester police and firefighters I have shown on a spreadsheet where their problems are. They have police officers who make 70 to 80K per year just in salary, not to mention the other benefits, and that’s too much when you add 100 or 200 more employees to the mix. SEE FOR YOURSELF:
And the teachers in my community at the Lakota School System make an average of $63,000 per year just in salary. They occupy well over $120 million in budget compensation for just 2000 employees. SEE FOR YOURSELF:
Yet nobody wants to make the declaration that public employees have a value of X, and they certainly don’t have the courage to say what the value of X is. This is why the public employee sector budgets have exploded to where they make 43.4% more than everyone else. CLICK HERE TO READ HOW:
One of the reasons nobody wants to touch those numbers is because the radical labor union aspect of the whole business has artificially propped up the value of those workers to build in the cost of their union dues, because unions want to collect the PAC money and if their members aren’t well paid, they may not want to contribute the money. So to me, before we go forward with anything a value must be assessed on the public employee. We must know what a job is worth before we can spend money in a budget on those positions.
To get back to Bill Cunningham, who is a smart businessman, I am sure he would not appreciate all of his dishwashers “collectively bargaining” for a 2% increase every year. At some point in time, a dish washer is a dishwasher and gets paid the maximum level of money for that position. For a dishwasher that might be $14 to $15 dollars an hour. But to pay all dishwashers collectively the same would be ridiculous. Some of them would show more ambition than the others. Some might deserve a 5% increase where some might not deserve an increase at all. But a dishwasher who had been washing dishes for Cunningham over 15 to 20 years won’t be getting $20 to $30 an hour for washing dishes, because that would be above the market price for dishwashers. At some point a cap on what a dishwasher is worth must be established so a budget can be built around that value, and if Cunningham doesn’t establish that cost, he could run his business into the red, which would kill it shortly thereafter.
A teacher is not worth more than 65K per year. I think the budget range should be within the parameters of 45K to 65K. If a teacher thinks they are worth more, than they are free to shop themselves on the free market, but at Lakota I wouldn’t be willing to pay more. It doesn’t mean much to me that a teacher in elementary school has a master’s degree. That SRC which dictates that public teachers pursue a master’s degree is simply an effect of the union lobby in Columbus and means nothing to me. The goal of that provision was to drive up costs, which was foolish. If a teacher wants to get a master’s degree, have at it. Maybe they get a job over someone who doesn’t have one, but the cost of that degree should fall on the teacher, not the property owner.
Police and Firefighters are in much the same range. For a cop to drive around in a police car, I’m not willing to pay more than 65K, and that would be for a 20 year veteran. They might face danger in my community a few times a year, and they are paid for that danger. Firefighters the same, I’m willing to pay a good wage, but not an outrageous one. The way I see it, I could do much of the work they do myself with a volunteer group. Paying them to do the work keeps me from having to do it, but there is a limit and I’ve reached it.
It’s not just Lakota dealing with this situation. The reason we are fighting the tax levies in our community can be seen below. All schools in Ohio are facing this problem which was caused by not setting any limits on how much public employees make. Without Issue 2 giving employees the option to be in a union, or giving school boards the ability to give increases based on merit the collective bargaining situation is forcing these Montgomery County school districts into higher taxes to pay for their contracts. Below are the amounts residents will have to pay in additional property taxes to cover the ballooning salary costs in those districts. These deficits are projected to hit by 2015.
• Huber Heights City School District: $1,273
• Northmont City School District: $1,272
• Valley View Local School District: $1,266
• Oakwood City School District: $1,249
• Northridge Local School District: $881
• Vandalia-Butler City School District: $880
• Mad River Local School District: $869
• Kettering City School District: $862
• Dayton City School District: $387
• Trotwood-Madison City School District: $383
• Centerville City School District: $311
Who thinks that the residents in those districts will receive equal pay compensation to offset the cost to their personal budgets? And those residents are obligated to pay those increases forever. In most cases the property tax increases will continue to go up perpetually. They won’t come down. So unless the incomes of the residents increase at the same rate as the public worker, we have a big problem. The taxpayers will not be able to pay, and the reason is because nobody had the guts to tell those public employees they aren’t worth as much as they thought.
The radical union position is that Issue 2 is a union busting bill. I see it as a compromise. I was personally furious when I saw that the governor wasn’t going to make belonging to a public union illegal, because no union should be allowed to exist on a public job. If a union wants to organize in a private endeavor, the market place will decide the result. But in a public job, the situation has been disastrous. I’m happy to support my local firefighters, police, and teachers. But get the SEIU, the AFL-CIO stickers out of your windows and off your license plates. Those are communist organizations operating like a syndicate and I want no part of them! By belonging to a union you bring their corrupt influence into my community which makes you a Trojan Horse, and you did so in order to make all the money you could make. Call it union busting. I call it getting rid of something that should have never been to begin with. It’s wrong, corrupt, and divisive. I would be willing to openly support public employees if I could see which ones belonged to a union and which ones didn’t. Issue 2 would give employees that option, and would allow me to know who believes in what.
Issue 2 requires people to show what they believe, and many people in the middle are just too mushy to take a stand. It’s easy to carry a sign, or to beg for more money, or to take a “can’t we just get along” position just because you’ve profited from it in the past. It takes courage to identify the situation and decide to see beyond the yelling and screaming, past the lies and manipulation to the essence of the problem, and that is unions have driven the cost of the public employee too high. Any future givebacks are already too late, but the union members are addicted now to the level of income they were promised, and the tax base cannot afford it. The man in the second video of this article says that if state money had been restored, many of these problems would go away. Well, no they won’t. That state money and that federal money also comes from the tax payers and while there is much that is spent on stupidity, from my perspective it’s the same kind of stupidity that the public employee is asking for.
Everyone with their mouth on the public tit is in the same boat, and we’ve hit a wall that will either dramatically drive up taxes, or dramatically reduce services, because the values are inflated, and have been for 20 years. And the situation to fix it takes courage, and unfortunately, courage is in short supply.
For the rest, it doesn’t take much courage to Vote YES on Issue 2 in the privacy of the ballot box. The union won’t report your phone number to their thugs like we know is happening in the telephone polling, where you are afraid to give your true position. I understand that it can be scary. But when you get into the booth, and it’s just you and that voting card, VOTE YES on ISSUE 2 or you can sign your name to the devastation that follows, because everyone who takes a passive position on this matter is a contributor to the problems that will follow.
For the answer to everything click the link below!