Divisive controversy in states like Indiana, Wisconsin and Ohio over collective bargaining put an age-old battle between public and private sectors on the front burner.
For years, some have lauded the government for treating government employees with respect in the form of generous pensions and benefits, while others have insisted the government was lavishing undue taxpayer dollars on workers who could just as easily be working in the private sector.
In a free market, the value of a job is decided by those doing the hiring.
Government, though, doesn’t have to play by the rules. Their revenue streams are self-adjusting; in other words, when they need more money, they simply take it.
You and I call this being taxed.
When Mitch Daniels and Scott Walker decided their states could no longer survive the burdensome yoke of public unions bleeding taxpayers, they fought back with legislation to curb collective bargaining powers (Please, don’t call them “rights.” They’re not)
What became clear to the public had been a secret of union bosses for decades: unions were getting away with not paying for anything.
In many of these schools, teachers were paying nothing toward pensions at a time when workers are lucky to be offered the option to have 5% matched by an employer, much less paying the full bill. They were also paying just 2 or 3% for health care when private employees are lucky to pay 15% and plenty pay upwards of 20%, while many others have HSA’s that are self-funded.
A recent Congressional Budget Office report found the same thing going on at the federal level. Overall, federal civilian employee compensation is 16% higher than the private sector, with near 50% margin in benefits.
Remember, this is without collective bargaining since federal civilian employees can’t bargain for benefits.
Maybe you’re thinking the reason is because the government has so many skilled workers. You’d be wrong.
Federal civilian employees with no more than a high school education averaged 36 percent higher total compensation than similar private-sector employees.
– Congressional Budget Office
In terms of wages only, those same people are making 21% more in base pay than private sector counterparts.
What is the point in all of this?
The government needs to be accountable to tax payers. The president has erroneously insisted that his health care plan will cause private companies to compete.
What he actually intended to do was create a situation where private companies compete against a public option, much like some European countries have.
The only problem with that is government doesn’t have to worry about profit margins when it comes to its labor force. Government can pay more and not have to worry about it affecting the government bottom line because let’s face it, the government clearly doesn’t care if its working off of a balanced budget.
Furthermore, by not directly competing, the government is making financially irresponsible decisions with its labor force and paying for it on the backs of people in the private sector already making less.
Our President seems to think that’s fair, desirable even.
Unless you work for the government, my guess is you’d disagree when you’re the one being paid less and having to pay more in taxes to finance it.
I would call it a waste, an unjust and immoral use of government power. Welcome to federal spending.