Where will the next shoe drop?

It will not be pretty. Do politicians have no shame?

By Jack E. Lohman

Why do we voters continue to allow our state and country to be stolen from us by people with absolutely no morals? And some are the very politicians we elect!

State after state are reporting dire financial conditions. California, Illinois, New Jersey, and even our own Wisconsin. The losses are so deep that only bankruptcy seems an option.

But wait; there’s another ploy coming to a theater near you! They’ve been preparing the soil and soon they’ll spring it on us…

It’s called privatizing.

It’s always the same false claim: private is more efficient than public. The public unions are impossible to work with, they’ll say, and we have a corporation that can save us dollars.

Rarely is that true, especially after they add all of the exorbitant salaries, bonuses, shareholder profits, marketing and political bribes that must be passed on to the taxpayer. These costs usually far exceed government waste, unless offset by egregiously low salaries that further harm the economy.

Need proof? Privatized Medicare Advantage costs taxpayers 17% more than government Medicare, which provides care to 80% of our seniors. Privatized Blackwater troops in the Middle East cost five times what US troops cost. But Blackwater executives give campaign dollars and our troops don’t, so what else would you expect?

Read this: A sell-off of state assets to the private corporate interests that fund the elections. The costs will go up and the profits shared with the politicians that made it all happen.

They now have us right where they want us: desperate.

They’ll take a state asset — say, roads — and lease them to a private company, who will then add tolls and recoup their investment in ten years and pocket the profits thereafter. All with taxpayer guarantees for usage and traffic volumes! And profits, incidentally, that should have gone to the taxpayers.

But oh, remember that while the government can’t give campaign contributions, the new private company CAN!!! And part of those profits will go to the friendly politician(s).

Or they’ll sell them state-owned buildings and then lease them back so the private company can make the profits from the taxpayers. Or farm out housekeeping and security services to for-profit companies, as was done by Walker in Milwaukee.

Scott Walker, as County Executive, proposed leasing OUT Milwaukee’s Mitchell Airport and then leasing it BACK to help the County financially. Fortunately he became governor before that could be pulled off, but now the state must contend with similar crazy ideas. No successful airport privatizations have been implemented nationally, and higher airport and traveler fees would have been necessary.

It’s the same old story, but will we ever learn?

We voters are too hung up on “our side” being right and “their side” being wrong, when in fact BOTH sides are corrupt. Republicans hate Democrats — or the reverse — when in fact we should be taxpayers who hate crooked politicians who bargain away our assets. And as long as WE battle each other they are free to give away the store.

Your politician wants you to believe that they have a handle on this whole economy thing, and they don’t. All they know is that the guy sending the campaign check wants this or that, and if the politician wants the checks to continue that guy will get his wish.

How much deeper into our pockets will we allow?

Now is the time to say stop!

State assets are now on the line, and next comes privatizing water rights. Food is some ways off because all of the family farms haven’t yet been bought off, but that time will come. UNLESS we have the gumption to stop the drain. NOW!!!

We MUST have 100% political turnover every two years until we get the politicians off the corporate dole.

8 Responses to Where will the next shoe drop?

  1. Wow, and so soon he privatizes!

    Walker unveils plans to replace Department of Commerce

    Governor-elect Scott Walker today announced his plans to replace the state Department of Commerce with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), a public-private partnership that would promote commerce and handle economic development activities for the state.

    See article at: http://tinyurl.com/2c7prxe

    Lohman: So if Scott wants a public-private department of commerce, two things should be set up front: the “public” side contains a majority of at least 60%, and the “private” side contains ZERO campaign contributors.

  2. george says:

    Absolute nonsense! The unions are 10 fold in terms of cost compared to the private sector. Their salaries, pensions and the like continue to grow, EVEN AFTER THEY RETIRE! A union backed employee will make more thru receiving his pension than he would while working. That’s a fact! Let’s say the salary of a union employee is 100k a year. Once that person retires, it jumps to over 100k a year and it never ends! In other words, that person makes more when they retire than when they work! While growing up, did you ever think “hey, I’m going to work for 20 years and then retire with a larger salary than I would have as an employee?” No! Of course not! You believed that you would work enough to save to be able to retire at an age that would allow you some decent years to enjoy! The mere idea that you make more when you retire as a government union backed employee only pushes people into the government work sector, which is way more inefficient than the private sector and it produces nothing to make our standard of living any better nor does it push competition, the main ingredient for better lives for all! Bottom line- public employees that are backed by unions make boat loads more and is effectively much more of a strain on the economy than the private sector could ever be. Why? Private sector companies have a bottom line. They must keep board members, stock holders and their customers HAPPY! And anyone who has ever run a business knows just how difficult this can be. But the public sector, they could care less about any of that, as they are monopolies that can print money on the national level and could care less about efficient methods. Besides, if a private corporation wants to lobby for their interests, it’s their money. Can you say the same about public companies? No, it’s NOT their money! It’s the tax payer’s money and if the backing of a politician by a union backed public entity isn’t a conflict of interest of the people and their money, then I don’t know what is!

    • montre says:

      You are INSANE!!! I am a public employee and my retirement is NOTHING like you are claiming. And nobody else I work with are getting any sort of retirement like you claim. These are not facts- simply more propaganda!

  3. George, you may be right, but it’s my guess that we’ll find out under Walker. I’ve never been a strong union protector, but I’m also not a strong corporate protector. I support a regulated free market that protects the public against free-wheeling CEOs who are out to screw both the public and their shareholders.

    But more so I oppose politicians who take money from one side or the other, or both. I want them working for ME, the taxpayer. And for that we’ll need public funding of campaigns. And political salaries that are based on pay-for-performance.

  4. Tony Oberbrunner says:

    Who is George and where does he get his info?

    A union backed employee will make more thru receiving his pension than he would while working. That’s a fact! Let’s say the salary of a union employee is 100k a year. Once that person retires, it jumps to over 100k a year and it never ends! In other words, that person makes more when they retire than when they work! While growing up, did you ever think “hey, I’m going to work for 20 years and then retire with a larger salary than I would have as an employee?”

    1. How many $100K union employees are there? Maybe an engineer somewhere, or a cop who works a lot of overtime.

    2. Who can retire after 20 yrs? Safety employees can retire at 55, but their pension is conditioned on years of service.

    3. How does a salary jump after retirement? A salary should end after retirement, and a pension should begin. Most pensions are determined at retirement and don’t rise. Some are pegged to the market and rise or fall based on the stock market. My state pension dropped by 25% after the market crash. It has never approached my income.

    4. Maybe he is talking about Ament & Co, but they were never union employees. Public employees in Wisconsin are covered by a pension system that the employee and employer to which both have contributed. It is a well financed and regulated fund.

    There’s probably more that could be said but George didn’t supply sources for his rant.


    PS Happy New Year

  5. Thanks Tony. I wish I could find an honest comparison of public-vs-private wages. My personal view is that public should be paid no more and no less than private, but I see far too much posturing on both sides.


  6. […] Also see: Where is the next shoe to drop? […]

  7. […] I say it again: “Private companies can give campaign contributions while government entities cannot!”  […]

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