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Here is the next California time bomb!!!

Original post made by Paul on May 17, 2011

Even though this article was reported by a paper other than the Pleasanton Weekly I believe that a 500 billion dollar unfunded pension deficit does not look good for the state of California. If I were a public services union employee or a person in the teachers union I would be very very very worried. If I were a California taxpayer who owned a home I would be even more worried. This issue must be addressed by Jerry Brown.





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Comments (33)

Posted by I Read Books, a resident of Birdland
on May 17, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Paul apparently doesn't know the difference between a newspaper ARTICLE and an Opinion Piece. (Perhaps he doesn't bother to read beyond the headlines? Who can venture to guess the depths of complete idiocy?)

The opinion piece is written by David Crane, former advisor to Arnold the Spermanator. Not much credential-wise except being a 'self-made' millionaire (meaning he exploited a lot of people on his way to the 'top').

He's against govt intervention into business. Which means he's against govt regulation of business. And so, he's against govt intrusion into the banking system where derivative trading went wild; he's against govt regulation of CEO compensation; he's against taxing the rich in a just manner. But tell him about a public school teacher who doesn't use a sick day and he's off to the races. Typical fascist thinker.


Posted by I see dead people, a resident of Danbury Park
on May 17, 2011 at 9:33 pm

Well facts are that the pension plans are woefully underfunded and only someone on the govenment payroll would say contrary. This folks is a recipe for disaster and we all know it. Keep sticking your heads in the sand and it will go away. WE are in deep weeds and no name calling by the likes of I read books is going to taint it otherwise. Ignore this at your own peril.


Posted by Liberal, a resident of Siena
on May 17, 2011 at 9:45 pm

Pension plans have been underfunded. The state is going to have to find a way to raise additional tax revenue. Hoping Brown has the courage to raise taxes on corporations and the wealthy.


Posted by I see dead people, a resident of Danbury Park
on May 17, 2011 at 9:50 pm

We already have the highest taxes in the nation and have chased most major business or industry out of that state which has got us in this fix to begin with so explain to me how increases taxes on those on the edge of leaving is going to help unless we want the state to be one which only poor people on the government payroll want to live in? Besides, tax increases in this state are not the decision of the governor but rather 2/3 of the voters or getting the Republicans to endorse it, neither of which will ever happen.


Posted by i read too, a resident of Charter Oaks
on May 17, 2011 at 10:07 pm

I agree with I Read Books. The level of ignorance displayed by so many of the right-wing opiners on these threadlines is absolutely stunning. Sometimes I can't tell whether they are for real or just pranksters out for a laugh....

Cali has by no means "chased most business or industry out of the state" as chicken little untruthfully claims. Go ahead, move to Texas or Oklahoma or W. Virginny or Mississippi if you think they're better states to live and do business in. Probably feel more comfortable with all the hicks and billies there. Believe me, Cali businesses have nothing to worry about; too many good workers, too many willing consumers. Now, if you're selling chewin' tobaccy or coonskin hats, you and I See Dead People might have something to worry about.


Posted by Arnold, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 17, 2011 at 10:14 pm

"Posted by I Read Books: Paul apparently doesn't know the difference between a newspaper ARTICLE and an Opinion Piece. (Perhaps he doesn't bother to read beyond the headlines? Who can venture to guess the depths of complete idiocy?)

The opinion piece is written by David Crane, former advisor to Arnold the Spermanator. Not much credential-wise except being a 'self-made' millionaire (meaning he exploited a lot of people on his way to the 'top').

He's against govt intervention into business. Which means he's against govt regulation of business. And so, he's against govt intrusion into the banking system where derivative trading went wild; he's against govt regulation of CEO compensation; he's against taxing the rich in a just manner. But tell him about a public school teacher who doesn't use a sick day and he's off to the races. Typical fascist thinker."

What a bozo!

Paul got it right, "Even though this article was reported by a paper other than the Pleasanton Weekly I believe that a 500 billion dollar unfunded pension deficit does not look good for the state of California. If I were a public services union employee or a person in the teachers union I would be very very very worried. If I were a California taxpayer who owned a home I would be even more worried. This issue must be addressed by Jerry Brown."

Nothing wrong with that statement.


Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 17, 2011 at 10:14 pm

These Chicken Littles should take a closer look at how "underfunded" is actually being calculated. It isn't quite the catastrophe they make it to be. I suspect/hope it is more a lack of education and understanding, rather than a malicious intent to deceive us with false information and misleading statistics.

Speaking of which, what ever happened to Bart? I miss that guy's selective use of convenient statistics.


Posted by Arnold, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 17, 2011 at 10:35 pm

B wrote: "These Chicken Littles should take a closer look at how "underfunded" is actually being calculated. It isn't quite the catastrophe they make it to be. I suspect/hope it is more a lack of education and understanding, rather than a malicious intent to deceive us with false information and misleading statistics."

I was thinking the same thing, Mrs chicken little. What I mean by that is, "I suspect/hope it is more a lack of(your)education and understanding, rather than a malicious intent to deceive us with false information and misleading statistics."

Unfortunately, and because this is an issue I've followed very closely, I understand your comments as a malicious intent to deceive us (taxpayers) with false information, misleading statistics, and lies. B, the pension issue is very real. I don't need any validation from you or your union to know it is true. The real question is will you understand the severity of the problem before the taxpayers decide to quit funding your pension. I know, you think it's guaranteed. Times are changing...


Posted by Another Reader!, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on May 17, 2011 at 10:36 pm

"I agree with I Read Books. The level of ignorance displayed by so many of the right-wing opiners on these threadlines is absolutely stunning. Sometimes I can't tell whether they are for real or just pranksters out for a laugh...."

That about sums it up, I Read Books. Apparently the jokester Arnold, like Paul and the other semi-literates, doesn't know the difference between opinion pieces and fact-based articles. This is the dangerous grey area where right-wing fascists demonstrate they cannot distinguish between fact and opinion.

We have bankers making $100+ million a year from derivitates trading of bundled bogus subprime mortgages, and Arnold, Paul, and the other fascists are screaming about high teacher salaries burdening the state. Anyone care to comment on the problem with this picture?


Posted by Another, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 7:23 am

Because there are known issues on Wall Street, we are supposed to ignore the obvious issue with government spending/unfunded liabilities?

Right, you can't be serious. And all you can do is denigrate the other posters you disagree with? Sad.


Posted by Bill, a resident of Birdland
on May 18, 2011 at 8:26 am

I believe we should continue to ignore the facts and statistics being released by the state. I think this might be the only way to bring sanity to this state and I mean by this that we should just ignore the huge wave heading for our shores and should just continue to lay by the beach and believe it is not coming because this would be the best way to eliminate the true believers.


Posted by Hmmmm, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 8:30 am

When the new generation grows, they will probably move out of California, and then with fewer people to tax, who will finance the older folks' pensions and free rides?

Refuse to educate this current generation, they will return the favor by moving out of the state and not funding your pensions. I know my children will. We are educating them in spite of budget cuts, but we have told them they must go out of state for college, and stay out of state as adults.


Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 8:35 am

I've been hearing that "everyone's going to leave California" drama for decades. I really wish they would all just finally leave, so I can have the beach to myself. And yet, over and over, it just doesn't happen. Wonder why.


Posted by judy, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on May 18, 2011 at 8:37 am

Its time the Public Sector changed to the Private Sector 401K's only it is NOT THE TAXPAYER OF CALIFORNIA WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE UNDERFUNDING OF THEIR PENSIONS. If I loose money in my 401k it is my responsibility NOT THE TAXPAYER. How much does the State of California pay to manage these funds? The Unions and the Lobbists our all for the Taxpayer picking up the loss. WE OUR BROKE IN CALIFORNIA NOW WE GOT THEIR IN INMATERIAL.


Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 18, 2011 at 8:51 am

Stacey is a registered user.

b wrote: "I've been hearing that "everyone's going to leave California" drama for decades"

It does happen, just not in the way most people believe. Look at the PPIC report on the subject. It shows that the poorest households leave California at a much faster rate than the richest households and they mostly leave for states with no income tax. It also shows how the poorest group moves INTO California the most!


Posted by Paul, a resident of Birdland
on May 18, 2011 at 8:56 am

b,

You should read this string a bit and reflect. Forget many of the comments you read but think about the overall theme and how California can be improved.


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Posted by Concerned, a resident of Canyon Meadows
on May 18, 2011 at 8:57 am

I graduated Foothill High School in the mid nineties and can tell you that almost all of my classmates and all my siblings have moved out of state due to cost of living, lack of jobs, and lack of affordable housing.

I know a few small business owners who closed up shop or moved out of state as well because they could not grow their company with the payroll taxes and insurance required by California. I didn't have to read about that in an article! Small business is just not supported here.

The pensions state people are making is down right robbery. These should be based on base salary not including vacation and sick days saved up for years and years. People are retiring with more pension than they made when they were working! Some going back as a contractor and getting paid on top of their already inflated pensions. This is ridiculous. The state can't support that for very long and I would hope that these greedy people would have a little more respect for their home state. I can only hope we change that now or claim bankruptcy so we can start fresh. They should get a 401K like everyone else.


Posted by Posted by Pensions were never the problem, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 10:14 am

The problem is that government employers took a free ride when times were good.

When interest rates were very high, pension funds were invested so well that governments were allowed to reduce or stop paying toward employee's pensions, because of the interest or return on the investments.

UC, who at that time ran LLNL, had professors who volunteered to watch the investments and they out performed the market and the investment counselors.

They did so well that UC did not have to pay or charge the employees for years and was worried that the State of Ca would "borrow" their money.

But when interest rates came down, pension funds just burned away their funds, and did not promptly ask employers to pay, or to pay enough. Eventually that caught up to them, and employers not only have to pay, they need to make up for some of the prior free ride. CalPERS and the teachers pensions are similar.

Yes, the employers need to pay more. But it is interesting to see news articles that say CalPERS is now getting a 17% rate of return on investments, so perhaps there's hope that can help offset the years of underpayments.

If you ask the employees to pay more, it really just costs more in the long run because that money comes out of their salaries, which the employer pays,and is taxed, too,

Employees did not cause the recession, and cutting the pensions that they are entitled to, based on years of service, will not solve today's problems.


Posted by ?, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 10:18 am

Right ... let's just forget that SB400 happened with all its retroactive granting of increased retirement benefits. Let's just for get that cities like Pleasanton contributed every year (actually paid both employer and employee portions) and still ended up with a $180M unfunded liability.

Thanks for the good laugh though ...


Posted by Jun, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on May 18, 2011 at 10:50 am

Pensions were never the problem,

I hate the burst your bubble but yes pensions not tied to revenue or reality was and is the problem and yes reducing current employees and retired employees pensions is part of the answer in addtion to a lot of things. Government pensioners are going to be impacted by this and big time. Unfortunately, there will be no way around this otherwise.


Posted by Fartenhaler, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Not only underfunded liabilities, but the State of California "borrowed" money from CalPers and CalSTRS and has not paid it back. This is not their money to take, so if they don't pay it back it is grand theft and possibly racketeering. It would behoove CalPers and CalSTRS management to demand the money be replaced ASAP and if that doesn't happen then they should ask the Feds to get involved to determine if charges should be filed against Governors Schwartzenegger and Brown, and the State Legislature. Sooner or later the California taxpayers are going to get hit in the wallet for this criminal activity.


Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 3:10 pm

Yes, people leave. And then other people come. That's the cycle of life in California. Been watching it happen for decades.

What's the alternative to pensions? Forcing people to work until they're 85 and drop dead? Bart Hughes gets to retire in his 40's, but we force "other people" to work far longer. And that's what you describe as fair? Really?


Posted by Bart Hughes, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 3:23 pm

b- not sure why you keep referencing me. BTW, I'm not retired. Would be nice, but I've got to earn a living like everyone else.


Posted by Arnold, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 18, 2011 at 6:23 pm

"Posted by Posted by Pensions were never the problem...The problem is that government employers took a free ride when times were good."

When did they do that? Does the State, Counties, Cities, or Special Districts have the authority to set the pension contribution rates? If they don't, who told them that they could take a pension holiday?

You need to quit listening to whomever you're listening to. Your entire post is inaccurate. I wouldn't normally respond to a post that was this far off base but it's the third time I've seen it, and hopefully the last.


Posted by Inflayshun, a resident of another community
on May 18, 2011 at 8:37 pm

Leaves can be excellent currency if we burn the forests.


Posted by Chicken Little, a resident of Foothill Farms
on May 18, 2011 at 8:56 pm

I agree with Arnold. Your entire post is wrong, especially when you say:

"Employees did not cause the recession"

All us fascists know that it was exactly the employees who caused the recession. Who else could possibly have done it? Public employees caused the housing-derivatives bubble, and now they are denying it. Let's crucify the real culprits: bank lending, derivatives trading, 'AAA' rating, real estate selling, public employees.

The Apocalypse is upon us!!! It is not too late to point blame at public employees. We need stronger govt'l regulation ... no, not of the private sector, but of public employees. Save California from its workers!


Posted by Juanito, a resident of Del Prado
on May 18, 2011 at 9:04 pm

Typical libs, no constructive comments or solutions, only insults, but I guess lack of intelligence and education always has been the trademark of the liberal movement.


Posted by Si-Si, a resident of Del Prado
on May 18, 2011 at 9:09 pm

Si Juanito. Great argument you pose, and no name-calling from you, eh? Everyone will be studying your pithy comments all evening long. Gracias.


Posted by Tex, a resident of Bonde Ranch
on May 18, 2011 at 10:52 pm

I don't know anymore. I've been a staunch Republican all of my life, and I voted for John McCain, both Bushes before that, and Dole too. But I'm troubled by all this scapegoating of public workers that has so many people all riled up. About what? I can't really tell you, except to say that This Dog Don't Hunt, And It's Barkin' Up the Wrong Tree. Now I'm as anti-union as the next guy, and don't get me started on gay marriage. But I lived through the Savings and Loan Scandel, then the dot.com bubble, then the housing bubble, then the derivatives scandel, and we're moving into the credit card scandel soon enough. I don't hear any of my loyal Republican stalwarts ballyhooing about all the big-time corruption that's going on in the private sector. We see folks who lost their entire life savings and pensions because of a company I once knew well and loved. Enron. Now again we see folks losing their buckskin shirts because of all the fraud and corruption perpetrated by the banking and investment industries. I'm a conservative and want to conserve money just like anyone else. But Lordy, these big banks and investment firms have been killing us. Now I see so many good Republicans not willing to come to grips with this. Instead, they seem to be shooting peas at ants by going after public workers. Why are we not supporting efforts to regulate the big-time crooks that have been left unscathed after all the recent fraud and corruption? I think the effort to roll back the salary of a park employee is just a sad thing. Seems we need to get our house in order instead of trying to burn down the houses of upstanding workers who work hard just like we all do. Call me a traitor if you wish. But I think old Abe would agree with me.


Posted by b, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 19, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Tex, that's the best bit of common sense I've heard from a Republican in a few years. Not sure where things went wrong with your party, but I'm impressed by your clear-headed thinking. Thank you.


Posted by Go Tex!, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 19, 2011 at 6:26 pm

I agree with Tex- I am amazed at the anger and outrage toward hard working people who actually give back to our community. Yet not a word about the outrageous corruption that is still going on in the private sector! How can you not see this backward thinking, and still protect those that ruined your savings! Personally, the loss of character and community that many have displayed in their acts of vengeance is a greater loss for Pleasanton than any amount of money. It is the cancer that will ruin this town.


Posted by huh?, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 19, 2011 at 6:43 pm

If you want to discuss the biggest issues they need to include Wall Street, Big Oil, and the Public Employee unions.


Posted by Christy, a resident of Lemoine Ranch
on May 19, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Tex, I think you and "Go Tex!" say it all. My husband and I have been solid conservatives all our lives. We believe in saving our money and conserving our planet. But like "Go Tex!" says, the new trend is like a cancer. I am not at all comfortable tearing down the employees who teach our children, keep our streets and parks safe, and save our homes from fire. We contracted to pay them what we do because they are worth it. Let's back our President and hope we can negotiate some compromised deals that are good for all Americans. And let's cut some slack for our very fine public service employees.


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