Cosmic Charlie
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http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/paul-ryans-budget-hur...

One thing he wants to cut are federal pensions. My father said a LOT of the people he knew in the federal service could have made a LOT more money in the private sector, but opted for the stability of a government job and that which comes with it.

I guess a deal's a deal until a better deal comes along, right?
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WackyBanana wrote:
One thing he wants to cut are federal pensions. My father said a LOT of the people he knew in the federal service could have made a LOT more money in the private sector, but opted for the stability of a government job and that which comes with it.

Federal pension cuts only apply to new hires. It's not like retired people will suddenly have their checks reduced.
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damiangerous wrote:
WackyBanana wrote:
One thing he wants to cut are federal pensions. My father said a LOT of the people he knew in the federal service could have made a LOT more money in the private sector, but opted for the stability of a government job and that which comes with it.

Federal pension cuts only apply to new hires. It's not like retired people will suddenly have their checks reduced.


Please refrain from reporting actual facts here Damian. This forum is for hyperbole and the demeaning of republicans and truth gets in the way of that.



*ps

Have son-in-law employed by Homeland Security. 8 years in, great pay, great retirement benefits. He already checked it out and his future is so bright I think I'm gonna go live with them.
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Pretty sweet. Obama does a film for his re-election, so the evil republicans do a film to tell the other side of the story.
 
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LeeDambis wrote:
So Ryan's going to cut spending on social programs by $5 trillion in order to hand out $4 trillion in tax breaks to the rich. Yep, that's pretty sweet - if you're rich. It won't do much of anything for the middle class who'll still be saddled with large annual deficits that add to the national debt. And the poor? Fuck 'em:



No but see, that money would go to creating jobs! Like, say, "washing the rich people's windows" or "wiping the rich people's asses".

Important stuff - 'land of opportunity' stuff!
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Normally I would say there are only a few things you can cut to make meaningful gains, so of course the Medic* packages would be on the block. But, if I understand it correctly, not only is he not touching defense, that budget is actually being increased.
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Drew1365 wrote:
Oh, a Washington Post opinion piece

You can look up the figures for yourself:

Projected revenues under Path to Prosperity plan 2013-2022 (p.88) = $37 Trillion

CBO Projected revenues under current law 2013-2022 (p.20) = $41 Trillion

Those figures and page numbers are from the documents provided directly from the CBO and the House. No opinions. Better?
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Certainly American atheists are going too far. I don't understand how Ryan's antisocial and antichristian message can be so openly spread and shouted from the institutions.
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damiangerous wrote:
WackyBanana wrote:
One thing he wants to cut are federal pensions. My father said a LOT of the people he knew in the federal service could have made a LOT more money in the private sector, but opted for the stability of a government job and that which comes with it.

Federal pension cuts only apply to new hires. It's not like retired people will suddenly have their checks reduced.

I believe the Ryan's plan calls for requiring current employees to pay more into their retirement plans.
 
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damiangerous wrote:
WackyBanana wrote:
One thing he wants to cut are federal pensions. My father said a LOT of the people he knew in the federal service could have made a LOT more money in the private sector, but opted for the stability of a government job and that which comes with it.

Federal pension cuts only apply to new hires. It's not like retired people will suddenly have their checks reduced.


Much of the private sector has already done away with the idea of providing pension benefits. Our government is pathetically slow and inefficient in changing with the times. For example, large Iowa companies like John Deere, Principle Financial, Rockwell Collins, etc. no longer have pension plans for new hires at all, but instead individuals are encouraged to take advantage of 401(k) plans or ESPP.

Besides, doesn't the average federal employee, with the same job description/experience level as a professional in the same field but working in the private sector, make roughly 5-10% more salary? I thought I remember a study being done on this fairly recently. If I can find the report, I'll post an update.

Edit: I'm not sure if this is the study I was thinking of, but USA Today did some research comparing private vs. public sector jobs here:
http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2010-03-04-federal-pay_N...

Edit 2: This is me:
Electrical engineer $86,400 (fed) $84,653 (pvt) $1,747 (diff)

The part that really gets to me is the table provided in this article lists salary comparisons, which don't include the pension and other health benefits at all! ($40k average per federal worker vs. $10k average per private worker).

Edit 3: The analysis below may be a bit over-simplified, but I think it nails the general trend accurately.
http://www.downsizinggovernment.org/overpaid-federal-workers

 
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looleypalooley wrote:
Our government is pathetically slow and inefficient in changing with the times.


That's because sometimes change is for the worse. The whole 401k concept is a kick in the teeth to the middle class. Back in the eighties this was a big compensation cut for many people and snowballed to the travesty it is today. People are so used to it now that when they see government employees who still have old style pensions, they think it's some kind of decadent luxury. 401k's were an across the board pay cut.

Wait a minute, 80's? I remember seeing some graphs in another thread about baby boomners... maybe it wasn't Jaws 3D after all. So many bad trends started in the 80's it's hard to pin any one thing on any one other.
 
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TheChin! wrote:
looleypalooley wrote:
Our government is pathetically slow and inefficient in changing with the times.


That's because sometimes change is for the worse. The whole 401k concept is a kick in the teeth to the middle class. Back in the eighties this was a big compensation cut for many people and snowballed to the travesty it is today. People are so used to it now that when they see government employees who still have old style pensions, they think it's some kind of decadent luxury. 401k's were an across the board pay cut.

Wait a minute, 80's? I remember seeing some graphs in another thread about baby boomners... maybe it wasn't Jaws 3D after all. So many bad trends started in the 80's it's hard to pin any one thing on any one other.


I'm actually doing quite all right by the 401(k) plans my employers have provided, despite suffering through both the 2000 tech bubble and 2008 real-estate "crash". I think most white-collar professionals probably can same the same. I definitely like the self-directed nature of them, despite the real risk that the saver might make a financial mistake every now and then. Beats a federally-managed social-security net hands down. Hell, I'll probably never even see that money, as the program may be bankrupt before I'm eligible.
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looleypalooley wrote:

I'm actually doing quite all right by the 401(k) plans my employers have provided, despite suffering through both the 2000 tech bubble and 2008 real-estate "crash". I think most white-collar professionals probably can same the same. I definitely like the self-directed nature of them, despite the real risk that the saver might make a financial mistake every now and then. Beats a federally-managed social-security net hands down. Hell, I'll probably never even see that money, as the program may be bankrupt before I'm eligible.


Well, they are more flexible and you can build a nest egg with them. The problem that I have is that you put more of your income compensation in them than a traditional pension. Employers were able to cut the money they place in pensions (contributions) by making employees pay out of their own salaries instead. For better or worse it was a large scaling back of labor costs for most industries. What the total consequences of those added burdens on the middle class are, is not clear, but I'd say they sure didn't help the ballooning debt trends seen since. It also can't help all those who didn't properly plan their 401k contributions and allocations. You could say it's their own fault and you would be right, but there was a time when you could just go to work, do your job and your retirement built for you without you having to be junior financial planner. Many people would rather have that option and spend more time worrying about their more immediate problems.

Though, I'm not saying that traditional pension plans are some glorious perfect solution. The mismanagement of pension funds by unscrupulous employers is legend. I just think that a properly regulated and managed pension was a better solution than a self-maintained 401k.
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In the UK wwe have a not disimialr situation, cuts to the benifits enjoued by public sector workers, and this has led to difficulties and recruitng and retaning high quality staff.
 
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Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.
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Darrett wrote:
Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.


Or you know, raise the low taxes in order to get something done. Raise the taxes, that's an easy change that will work and can go ahead immediately. Cutting spending is never an immediate solution, since you have to decide what spending to cut. At least there are easy ways to raise taxes, you can't just cut spending in the same way.

When has trickle down economics ever been shown to work?
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Dolphinandrew wrote:
Darrett wrote:
Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.


Or you know, raise the low taxes in order to get something done. Raise the taxes, that's an easy change that will work and can go ahead immediately. Cutting spending is never an immediate solution, since you have to decide what spending to cut. At least there are easy ways to raise taxes, you can't just cut spending in the same way.

When has trickle down economics ever been shown to work?


I am a supprter of trickle up ecconomics.
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slatersteven wrote:
I am a supprter of trickle up ecconomics.


Now that is easy to demonstrate in reality . Give $100 to a poor family, and you can bet that most of that $100 will be in the hands of the job creators very, very soon.
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Dolphinandrew wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
I am a supprter of trickle up ecconomics.


Now that is easy to demonstrate in reality :). Give $100 to a poor family, and you can bet that most of that $100 will be in the hands of the job creators very, very soon.


Prety much...Give £100 to some one who does not need it and they may not spend it, give it to some one who does need it and they will. Moreover even of the rich person spends it it will be in high cost low employment sectors, whereas the poor person will spend it on consumer goods in the high street.
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Dolphinandrew wrote:
Darrett wrote:
Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.


Or you know, raise the low taxes in order to get something done. Raise the taxes, that's an easy change that will work and can go ahead immediately. Cutting spending is never an immediate solution, since you have to decide what spending to cut. At least there are easy ways to raise taxes, you can't just cut spending in the same way.

When has trickle down economics ever been shown to work?


Raising taxes doesn't reduce deficits; it just enables bureaucrats to spend even more, while putting the squeeze on those that are productive members of society. You can't spend your way out of the problem. When you raise taxes, either the rich pass the costs on, depressing the economy, or you tax the poor, which exacerbates class envy and widens the gap between rich and poor.

I'm not saying tax codes don't need to be changed, but that's always the sticking point between the sides. Nobody can claim that spending less money won't help our bottom line. We also can't afford to play the game of "cuts except for military spending", which is untenable.

I can provide links later if you like, but as I recall JFK tried tax cuts to stimulate the economy in the 1960s by giving investment tax credits to businesses, and it worked admirably. The right likes to attribute the concept to Reagan, but he was just the most recent follower of a sound theory as used by JFK , Calvin Coolidge, and FDR.
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Darrett wrote:
Dolphinandrew wrote:
Darrett wrote:
Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.


Or you know, raise the low taxes in order to get something done. Raise the taxes, that's an easy change that will work and can go ahead immediately. Cutting spending is never an immediate solution, since you have to decide what spending to cut. At least there are easy ways to raise taxes, you can't just cut spending in the same way.

When has trickle down economics ever been shown to work?


Raising taxes doesn't reduce deficits; it just enables bureaucrats to spend even more, while putting the squeeze on those that are productive members of society. You can't spend your way out of the problem. When you raise taxes, either the rich pass the costs on, depressing the economy, or you tax the poor, which exacerbates class envy and widens the gap between rich and poor.

I'm not saying tax codes don't need to be changed, but that's always the sticking point between the sides. Nobody can claim that spending less money won't help our bottom line. We also can't afford to play the game of "cuts except for military spending", which is untenable.

I can provide links later if you like, but as I recall JFK tried tax cuts to stimulate the economy in the 1960s by giving investment tax credits to businesses, and it worked admirably. The right likes to attribute the concept to Reagan, but he was just the most recent follower of a sound theory as used by JFK , Calvin Coolidge, and FDR.


Fuck you basic macroeconomics, fuck you.

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myopia wrote:
Darrett wrote:
Dolphinandrew wrote:
Darrett wrote:
Good Lord, I wish someone would just keep tax levels the same and cut the ridiculous spending so as to balance the budget. Neither side is even close to getting anything done because the GOP is married to trickle down economics policies which, though historically successful, ate not acceptable to the other side. Similarly, the Democrats are beholden to the unions and the beneficiaries of these social programs (legal voters or otherwise) and so won't accept spending cuts.

Just cut spending. Worry about tax cuts later. Get. Something. Done.


Or you know, raise the low taxes in order to get something done. Raise the taxes, that's an easy change that will work and can go ahead immediately. Cutting spending is never an immediate solution, since you have to decide what spending to cut. At least there are easy ways to raise taxes, you can't just cut spending in the same way.

When has trickle down economics ever been shown to work?


Raising taxes doesn't reduce deficits; it just enables bureaucrats to spend even more, while putting the squeeze on those that are productive members of society. You can't spend your way out of the problem. When you raise taxes, either the rich pass the costs on, depressing the economy, or you tax the poor, which exacerbates class envy and widens the gap between rich and poor.

I'm not saying tax codes don't need to be changed, but that's always the sticking point between the sides. Nobody can claim that spending less money won't help our bottom line. We also can't afford to play the game of "cuts except for military spending", which is untenable.

I can provide links later if you like, but as I recall JFK tried tax cuts to stimulate the economy in the 1960s by giving investment tax credits to businesses, and it worked admirably. The right likes to attribute the concept to Reagan, but he was just the most recent follower of a sound theory as used by JFK , Calvin Coolidge, and FDR.


Fuck you basic macroeconomics, fuck you.




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looleypalooley wrote:
TheChin! wrote:
looleypalooley wrote:
Our government is pathetically slow and inefficient in changing with the times.


That's because sometimes change is for the worse. The whole 401k concept is a kick in the teeth to the middle class. Back in the eighties this was a big compensation cut for many people and snowballed to the travesty it is today. People are so used to it now that when they see government employees who still have old style pensions, they think it's some kind of decadent luxury. 401k's were an across the board pay cut.

Wait a minute, 80's? I remember seeing some graphs in another thread about baby boomners... maybe it wasn't Jaws 3D after all. So many bad trends started in the 80's it's hard to pin any one thing on any one other.


I'm actually doing quite all right by the 401(k) plans my employers have provided, despite suffering through both the 2000 tech bubble and 2008 real-estate "crash". I think most white-collar professionals probably can same the same. I definitely like the self-directed nature of them, despite the real risk that the saver might make a financial mistake every now and then. Beats a federally-managed social-security net hands down. Hell, I'll probably never even see that money, as the program may be bankrupt before I'm eligible.

1) How are you doing in regards to inflation? Pensions are adjusted to salaries at the end of employment and so aren't impacted by the massive inflation in costs we have had in the last two decades.

2) Without a pension there is no incentive to stay in a public sector job for an entire career. Without a pension or job stability folks would jump ship whenever a better offer comes along. edit: The public sector cannot raise a key employee's salary or offer other benefits to maintain continuity or ensure talent stays in the company.end edit Talk about lack of institutional knowledge.

3) It also increases the possibility for corruption. We already have enough revolving door issues with public sector employees going to private companies related to that field. You think there isn't enough corruption now, just go ahead and encourage regulators to jump ship to companies.

4) 401K plans rely on stocks. How do you stop public sector employees from owning stock in the fields they regulate if you require them to own stock for retirement?

This proposal is bad for incentive to recruit. There are already many downsides to public service, taking away the only thing that keeps people in with all the difficulties will jut gut it and create a divide and resentment within those offices that have new and old employees. Remember if a company has bad management it will fold, the same isn't true in government offices, you need good staff to stay on and persevere during tough times, especially with military personnel.

Cheers
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mtagge wrote:
1) How are you doing in regards to inflation? Pensions are adjusted to salaries at the end of employment and so aren't impacted by the massive inflation in costs we have had in the last two decades.


Quite well. Inflation has been quite tame the past decade or so. When it starts to heat up, I plan to be in a good position--low exposure to fixed income junk. It is a fallacy to believe that pensions are somehow "immune" to the effects of the stock market or inflation, but you seem to bank everything on the corporate "guarantee". That guarantee is only as good as the company is solvent, and is managed well.

What the hell do you think the managers of corporate pension fund have the assets invested in, anyway? Why, that would be stocks, bonds, and maybe some real estate.

mtagge wrote:
2) Without a pension there is no incentive to stay in a public sector job for an entire career. Without a pension or job stability folks would jump ship whenever a better offer comes along. Talk about lack of institutional knowledge.


That's a load of something...smelly and rank with diseased, decroded mold (to quote Napoleon Dynamite). Several reports I mentioned earlier show fairly compelling evidence that public sector jobs--for equivalent experience levels and job descriptions--pay better than private sector jobs.

mtagge wrote:
3) It also increases the possibility for corruption. We already have enough revolving door issues with public sector employees going to private companies related to that field. You think there isn't enough corruption now, just go ahead and encourage regulators to jump ship to companies.


Wait. The system we have now prevents that? Wow, we're saved! Thanks for your genius insight into this. Actually no. The system we have now has a terrible revolving door effect. Eliminating or capping pension benefits won't change this. That's a pretty lame scare tactic.

mtagge wrote:
4) 401K plans rely on stocks. How do you stop public sector employees from owning stock in the fields they regulate if you require them to own stock for retirement?


Not just stocks. Bonds and perhaps real property, too. But pension funds are equally exposed to stocks, bonds, and real estate. All public sector employees own stock indirectly through their pension funds.

mtagge wrote:
This proposal is bad for incentive to recruit. There are already many downsides to public service, taking away the only thing that keeps people in with all the difficulties will jut gut it and create a divide and resentment within those offices that have new and old employees. Remember if a company has bad management it will fold, the same isn't true in government offices, you need good staff to stay on and persevere during tough times, especially with military personnel.


This is one of the critical problems with government, and one of the most compelling reasons, in my mind, why the federal government should be kept as small as constitutionally possible. Because a government agency could be an under-performing, useless, dead-weight organization but never see a cut in funding or change in operating goals.

An entire industry could change (ah, let's see, like the way people send and receive mail?), but an inefficient government agency will only seek ways for it to survive when the only reasonable action is to cut it severely or nearly eliminate it.

A government agency will rarely--if ever--go away or get smaller, even when all signs point to that being the best course of action.

 
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