Monday, September 06, 2010

Got a Job? Happy Labor Day, Govies!

The average dude in this country doesn't have much to crow about this Labor Day, 2010. More than likely, he (or she) is unemployed or underemployed and likely to stay that way for years. Not so the Governmental class. Unionized, tenured, and pampered with the greatest salaries, medical benefits, and most gold-plated pension plans on earth, they can afford to sneer disdainfully at their minions in flyover country when we dare call in to ask what happened to our unemployment checks. Or, God forbid, why we, who are allegedly the paymasters of state, Federal, and local government employees (govies) are sending them more and more money to enable them to live like relative gods while we live like peons. Amity Shlaes gets this irony perfectly:
This weekend we celebrate Labor Day in a country divided between two kinds of workers. The first is the private-sector worker, the vulnerable one who rides the business cycle without shock absorbers. The second worker, who works for the government, lives a cushioned existence in which terminations take years, pension amounts are often guaranteed, and recessions are only thunder in the distance. Yet worse than this division is the knowledge that the private-sector worker will pay for public-sector comfort with ever higher taxes.
Unfortunately, you can't read the rest of it because it's behind the WSJ firewall. But this clip, in and of itself, commemorates Labor Day 2010 well enough. Back in the day, no one ever begrudged the govies (or the teachers) their swell benefits packages, even then generally better than ours. Why? Because we (and they) felt it was good compensation for their relatively lousy salaries.

Today, they still have the gold-plated packages. But they now make, on average, considerably more than the Great Unwashed--they who have to pony up now for both the packages AND the CEO-level salaries. Time to get this fixed. Time for the Great Awakening to spread.

November will be here soon.

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