Active and retired teachers are being told about the local problems that are making it necessary to steal their wages* and raid their earned compensation (pensions**).
What we are being told are lies, distortions, untruths, spun data, etc. meant to shame teachers and distract every citizen who believes the propaganda.
Like all well-made lies, some basic original truths are used to spin the added misinformation and disinformation that become the lies.
The biggest lie of all is that this massive pillage and theft is local.
Here are a few glaring proofs on state levels.
The final example proves the national (probably multinational) level of this massive theft via paid and/or propagandized legislators.
The Chief Legal Counsel to the President of the Illinois Senate actually explained in writing the theft procedure to President John Cullerton. It was publicly printed on the official state site but has subsequently disappeared from that source. Glen Brown reprints it for us HERE.
“Anyone following the pension-reform debate knows Illinois has long diverted the money needed to properly fund its pension systems to avoid tax increases, cuts in public services or both. Some may not admit it, but they know it. They also know this practice is the primary reason why the systems are under water.”
Kentucky, Rhode Island and Illinois teachers as well as all of their citizens are not even allowed to know the details of what Wall Street firms and international hedge funds and managers are doing with each state’s pension fund investments. David Sirota explains HERE in the International Business Times.
“You have no right to know the details of the investments being made with your retirement savings. That was the crux of the declaration issued by state officials to a high school history teacher when he asked to see the terms of the agreements between the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System and the Wall Street firms that are managing the system’s money on behalf of him, his colleagues and thousands of retirees.”
Fred Klonsky posts TRS’s Jon Bauman’s attempt at discrediting David Sirota’s report. The discrediting attempt doesn’t work, and it actually explains an even more bizarre undercurrent HERE.
“The TRS and ISBI denied requests for lists of hedge funds contained within hedge fund of fund investments in which they invested. The FOIA is not crystal clear on hedge funds as with private equity, but I believe the pension systems are on firm legal ground.”
The West Virginia legislature has also slashed the veins of its citizen employees. The spin is the usual austerity blather with tough-decision-but-somebody-has-to-make-it overtones. Read the West Virginia Education Association report HERE.
“‘Nobody wants any cuts. Nobody wants any changes, but we do have a fiscal responsibility to the taxpayers and to the government of West Virginia to balance this budget and keep it balanced and that’s what we’re doing,’ said Ted Cheatham, PEIA director.
As difficult as those decisions are, I think we’ve done a reasonable job of structuring a plan to do that.’”
One man in one city, Mayor Rahm Emanuel of Chicago, has a choke hold on billions of dollars of its public employee’s pension funds , including teacher pension funds. (This is not a republican versus democrat issue. Corruption is bipartisan.) Multiply that by cities and states across America, and the immense amounts of money awaiting the plunderers become evident.
Yes, teachers are the primary target, the scapegoats, for all of the damage done by the political theft and corruption that is strangling people who work for a living. But the target area has widened and continues to widen.
The federal government’s members of the House Education and the Workforce Committee seems to be the giant bully of bullies – especially during the lame-duck session of Congress. The Los Angeles Times reports it HERE.
“Passing legislation on a tight deadline–especially a bogus deadline–is invariably a formula for serious mischief. That’s what’s happening with a proposal to deal with a supposed crisis in worker pensions by allowing trustees to slash the pensions of already-retired workers to shreds.
(They) are trying to slip the measure into an omnibus spending bill to be passed before Dec. 11, when Congress leaves Washington for its vacation recess. Pension advocates are up in arms, not least because the measure’s actual language hasn’t been made public. (It’s still in negotiation, committee staffers say.) What is known is that it would change four decades of labor law in a way that mostly affects the oldest and most vulnerable workers.”
Teachers. This state. That state. This fund. That fund.
Who is targeted, and how many separate funds can be attacked.
Over 1,400 separate funds are at stake. Separate funds.
The Washington Post explains it HERE.
“Congress could soon allow the benefits of current retirees to be cut as part of an agreement to address the fiscal distress confronting some of the nation’s 1,400 multi-employer pension plans.
‘This proposal would devastate retirees and their surviving spouses,’ said Karen Friedman, executive vice president of the Pension Rights Center, a nonprofit group. ‘The proposal would also torpedo basic protections of the federal private pension law . . . that states that once benefits are earned, they can’t be cut back.’”
The news bites will show smiling legislators returning home to spend a quiet holiday with their families to open beautifully wrapped gifts under the tree in their warm, spacious and secure homes. What these legislators are doing to us is morally wrong, and inhumane.
Your legislator wishes you a Merry Christmas. Really?
The behavior of legislators is the reality. The wage theft and pension raiding by our own government officials on local, state and national levels must be reversed, or we shall all suffer for the profits of a very few who already possess immense wealth, wealth nearly beyond imagination.
*(Money taken from every paycheck is nearly guaranteed not to exist in its entirety when pension time arrives, or required retirement savings are shorted by having fees taken out upfront, along the way, and at the end.)
**(Contracted, deferred earnings have been given to other people, corporations and funds in spite of contractual and legal obligations.)