Coping: Public Employees Want It ALL

They’re coming for your sick leave, next. Then, they want your home equity. People living in the media bubble like to insist that there is no Deep State.  Yet, there’s an emerging case in Texas that proves the point we’ve been making for years – namely that nowadays, the Government Rules – not We the People. Worse? It reduces to a dollars and cents buy-off of the division Deep State.

First, some basics.  Wage reports comparing public workers and private sector don’t usually include big benefit packages.

Absolute Krappe to borrow a contributor’s phrase.  When you read some basic laws and policy books in Texas, for example, what comes into view is that while the Republican majority talks tough and pro-business- they hand out Big Benefits to government workers.  Because, when comes to government workers, they are reliable voters and voting blocks.  And they get politicians reelected.

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Here’s how this has come up:  In Texas, there is no such thing as legally required sick leave. holidays, or vacation in the private sector.

As WOAI (San Antonio) reported Monday, Texans for Paid Sick Leave is circulating a petition to require private employers contribute paid sick leave as a benefit.  Employers are fighting it because right now the laws only require  non-discrimination and minimum wage.

Why, the private employers spew, if they have to paid minimum wage and paid sick leave, why that would force them to effectively pay more than minimum wage.  And that’s dough out of the fat cat wallets.

Frankly, I don’t have a problem with the GOP being greedy pricks…they do that extremely well.

But a Constitutional Republican (like me) sees this lack of paid sick leave as a violation of the Constitution’s Equal Protection concept.  Public employers get to load up on bennies.

No equality to it.

Let’s see how Texas opens the till for state employees, in comparison, shall we?

The WOAI story has this summary:

“While many employers offer a certain amount of paid sick leave to workers as a job benefit, there is no local, state, or federal law that requires that they do so.  In fact, no employee benefits, other than the minimum wage and anti-discrimination protections, are required by law, although the Obamacare law requires all companies with fifty or more employees to offer health insurance or pay a tax penalty.”

Hold it!

Notice, please:  No sick leave.  No paid vacation, no paid holidays off…you following along, here?

NOW, let’s flip over to the Texas Start Auditor’s office and see how the golden geese (Public employees) get treated:  It’s like reading about royalty in comparison:


Who Is Eligible?

State employees at agencies and higher education institutions are entitled to sick leave without a deduction in salary for the following:

? When sickness, injury, or pregnancy and confinement prevent an employee from performing his or her job;

? When the employee needs to care for and assist a member of the employee’s immediate family who is sick; or

? To attend educational activities such as parent-teacher conference sessions and other school functions for the employee’s children.

Employees of higher education institutions must be employed to work at least 20 hours per week for a period of at least 4.5 months to be eligible for sick leave. In addition, students employed in positions that require student status as a condition of employment are not eligible for sick leave. “

And how much – under State law?

Full-time employees accrue sick leave at a rate of eight hours for each month of state employment. Part-time employees accrue sick leave on a proportionate basis.

An employee is entitled to be credited for one month’s sick leave for each month of employment with the State beginning on the first day of employment and on the first calendar day of each succeeding month of state employment. An employee who is on leave on the first day of a month may not use sick leave that is accrued for that month until after the employee physically returns to work.

An employee who is employed during any part of a calendar month accrues sick leave for the entire month. “

If the State wants to be this generous with out TAX DOLLARS, seems to me that Texas private-sector employers ought to be held to the same basic level..

While private employees don’t have to get holidays, check out how the State works.

As the State Auditor’s schedule for State Employees reveals there are 10-paid holidays and another additional 4 “skeleton crew” days for a total of 14-days a state worker.

All of this state largess will come back to haunt Texas.  Just like it’s already haunting Illinois.

Up there, because of similar, earlier, public employee largess, the state is looking at options (this proposed by the Chicago Fed as a solution) like a one-percent annual special assessment on all property in the state.  On a $350,000 home, this would tack on $3,500 per year on top of all the taxes now being paid.  For 30-YEARS.  And even this theft of homeowner equity won’t pay the coming bills.

Read: “How Should the State of Illinois Pay for its Unfunded Pension Liability? The Case for a Statewide Residential Property Tax.”


Even this huge TAX GRAB OF HOMEOWNER EQUITY wouldn’t fund MANY Chicago pensions…they’ll want event more.  Remember: This is just Illinois, the state. Den of liberal thieves that it is, the fuse is lit most everywhere else..

Texas has a chance to do things right, but the window will close.  Public employment has become a kind of golden goose – and if you want a great job and money for life, consider government employment.

I don’t like to get up on the high-horse about this stuff, but if all people’s labor has intrinsically equal value, WTF is with the class of Super Citizens called government workers?

In a country based on the notion of hard work and equality, we have made great strides in recent years in the direction of less work and less equality between public and private sector workers.

Unless you really love to pay more taxes, you might want to rethink worker inequality.

Honestly, the ONLY workable answer is to have a single, uniform, national system (like Social Security) and put everyone in it – even Congress.

Don’t mean to go off into a Peoplenomics kind of projection here, but if/when the time for Elaine and I to move comes along in our 70’s and time to live next to a hospital in the city, or at least where there’s 3-minute fire response, we will go shopping for our next city, county, and state based on current and projected public employee pension and benefit debt.

God forbid you live in Illinois and have leftists in the legislation who want to steal your home equity so the public workers can  get more than you.

Last time I checked, that wasn’t the American Way.  A damn fine reason to always refer to “America” in past tense.

Those not lucky enough to be anointed as public workers shouldn’t be forced to pay for public workers and services twice.  Once when rendered and later on to pay the retirement.

Government funding should always be on a strict, pay-as-you-go basis.  No getting back in line for a second bite of the taxpayer’s butt.  That’s the road to damnation…and we’re on it.

Write when you get rich,

38 thoughts on “Coping: Public Employees Want It ALL”

  1. Robin Hood did not rob from the rich to giv e to the poor. He took excessive taxes and returned them to the people

  2. this new twist to fund unaccountable legislators and federal and state local government employees deficit spending follows the federal government’s taxing and regulating big business to leave america. federal employees devoured the cash cow big business and the wages they paid their employees. [let me say it makes me SICK that big business pollutes the environment and has no personal accountability that the federal government had to get involved to stop the pollution of the environment.. the corporate executives go home to their families proud of their business’ ‘contribution’ to the environment.] NOW the government at all levels are devouring the people with taxes like the Illinois additional property tax to fund bankrupt pension. in Tennessee, unaccountable and corrupt tax assessors want to tax the whisky barrels of Jack Daniels who provides not only jobs but tourist revenue too. Government refuses to cut spending and is coming after the people. There can only be one end… like the french revolution and the Nuremberg trials for these protectors of the public trust!

  3. G – love your perspective on Government employment. Having worked for N.E. state government job for a little over 5 years, I lived on both sides of the “coin”. The reason for the generous bennie package is to compensate for the lousy (low) wages they historically pay, when compared to private sector. Hard to attract competent people without the generous bennies. Some would argue, myself included, that the generous bennies are NOT enough to attract competent people to Guvment positions. This is proven to be true every single time I have ever had to deal with a Government employee or Agency. Government no longer works for the People, seems to be working very hard at F-ing everybody over on a regular basis.
    Why would working Americans be upset about working harder and longer to pay for higher taxes to support Undocumented Immigrants ? Don’t they want to further in-rich the Pelosi’s, Clinton’s, Schumers and Obama’s? Perhaps we can send our tax dollars directly the Obama off shore account (U1 deal) in Singapore..What the hell is matter with the ‘sheep” in this country anyway?

    • ALL pensions/bennies need to be fully funded(as projected) in the year that they’re vested. The payout needs to be proportional to the actual income/valuation of the pension in the year paid out. The guarantee has to go.

      Today, government employees get paid at or above market with some exceptions. They have no legitimate claim for special consideration.

      Lastly, IMHO, an employee of the government or an elected offal has no right to vote in any election as that’s a direct conflict of interest. I’d extend that to recipients of welfare and other largesse, and of course, all foreigners.

      BTW, there’s no such thing as an undocumented immigrant. By definition, immigrants are documented, and undocumented foreigners are simply infiltrators.

    • James: No, it is NOT like Amazon being taxed in Seattle – the tax that was passed yesterday is to give dollars to the City so they can mismanage the funds and hire more expensive ‘consultants’ all for the cause of helping homeless people. Although I sympathize with the homeless, too many of them do NOT want to change their lives (clean up, become employed and get off the streets), and instead want the freebies that generous cities like Seattle are handing out. Why should they go to work and pay rent when it can all be gotten for free – what is the incentive? And what about penalizing those cities that give bus tickets to their homeless so that they can go to another city like Seattle so that they can become another cities problem? Seattle wants to build apartments and provide medical services to the homeless. What about residents like myself, who have worked every single friggin’ day of the lives and are now, as a senior citizen, are struggling to make ends meet due to skyhigh and soon unaffordable property taxes and medical insurance and medical care. Guess it will, in the end, be a good thing to have all that ‘free housing and medical care’ cuz at the rate things are going, I just might end up joining them.

      • Wrong “M”, and out of line! What Pepper D has stated is the truth. This is just another giant sucking down sound of the USA circling the drain. Dependent classes. Not good nor healthy for any society, and it drains from the responsible. But, Pepper D, of course if you can’t beat em, you can join em, however, right now, Medicaid rules start at 1 car, and no more than $2,000 in the bank for citizens. If you aren’t a citizen, the sky is the limit.

      • It isn’t that I ‘want’ to join them, it’s that with all my money going out for the unaffordable property taxes (ours just went up to about $11,000 a year now with promised hefty increases for 2019 and 2020), add in my medical insurance premium ($1,100/mo) PLUS the costs of the insurance co-pays and deductibles; and then just the everyday cost of living increases….my retirement funds are not going to be lasting very long at all –
        and easy to say – just move – but not easy to do, especially when we ‘have’ to stay in this area where the cost of housing- buying or renting – is astronomical.

      • Amen Truth..
        You cannot have a car ten years old or newer. And any retirement savings has to be eliminated. A house can be sold and the proceeds used. The nursing homes are filled with new divorced people just so the other partner can keep their ss. Another one is if you get food assistance it takes away from anything else. A living wage is basically your deduction divided by twelve
        Been there done that went a year without any income. They can just jump in and take from your bank account as well and even if the funds aren’t there they get it you pay the penalties

      • Pepper, look into Samaritan Ministries. Ditch your insurance. Come on, people, do your homework!!!

  4. Simple solution, work for a software company. 22 holidays a year, all the sick leave and work from home you can eat. 6 week sabbatical every 4 years. Bring your dog. Free coffee and food. What’s wrong with that? What’s wrong with the companies that don’t provide such awesome benefits? Oh yeah I forgot, software is hard work for smart people, so you do have to be smart and hard working.

    • The software companies I worked for had 8 company paid holidays a year that’s all. Plus 2 weeks vacation and 5 days sick time. But maybe times have changed.

      • And mine had stock options. Delicious, fungible stock options. BUT times HAVE changed… Now, only 1-3 people at the top make the moolah.

  5. Taxation without representation? What if your representatives tax the bejeezus out of you? Wouldn’t be surprised if they passed an Exit tax…they’ll get you one way or another.

    Not productive, not innovative, not investing in growth. Taxes are punitive, unsustainable, parasitic. Especially when paying for nonproductive members of society (most public workers) to live out their days in air conditioned, new truck splendor. F that!
    (My mom worked less than 10 years for a county in CA. Retired at 55 with $6k/month. Her husband spent 20 and 6 years with two different unions. Also retired at 60 with $6k/mo. Then after 08, both retirements were slashed. Now I wasn’t happy with the amount they were getting, but neither am I happy watching my parents try and thrive in their ‘golden years’ (barf) on half of their planned income.)

    The future is soup.

    • There is an exit “fee” to give up citizenship and leave the country plus an income tax penalty for several years after departing.

      • That only applies if you have a net worth of two million or more. For the rest of us, it’s not so bad. Unfortunately, you need to acquire another citizenship prior to giving up US citizenship, and that’s problematic for most. For regular folks, it’s probably best to keep your citizenship and emigrate(if you wish) and live decently yet not flamboyantly on a relatively low income. There are two important high consequence tax documents that you have to be aware of if you do this.

  6. G.,you are spot on about the pen-funds. I already had to take a$500/mo cut due to bad plans/crooks. and looks tobeee more on the way , according to plan news…bend over…. this thing is HUGE…most all funds in my area R in trouble, teachers ,PW fire polc/kgb lol…

  7. A good long deflationary depression wil take care of the pension problem when it gets here.

    • Sadly, no. Union bosses will “hold up” the civilian pop. Just like banksters do. Too Big to Fail!

      • G is correct.

        I live in Wayne County. We were assessed a “one time” summer tax levy in 2015 to shore up their pension fund.

        In 2015 I had lived in Wayne County for about a year and had to help, no, was forced by law, to give money to them to fix decades of malfeasance. In fact, I wasn’t even born when their pension laws were put into place.

      • Oh goody! Then we get either a violent revolution, ala France in 1789, or we get a hyperinflatioanry collapse.

        What fun for all it will be.

  8. “Because, when comes to government workers, they are reliable voters and voting blocks.”

    That’s why we should abolish any political parties, and vote (into office!) people of proven accomplishments / integrity. Since there is no support for that; So be it! ;-(

  9. Normally George, I think you’re a very sharp guy, and then you do this again:

    “….the ONLY workable answer is to have a single, uniform, national system (like Social Security) and put everyone in it…”

    First off, there’s no case of a successful nationwide pension system anywhere/when EXCEPT when the ratio of workers to retirees was high AND when said country was prosperous.

    As soon as that ratio drops, problems start, quite aside from governmental incompetence, corruption, etc.

    The answer to all this, and I think you allow yourself hope which leads to desperate thought solutions, is that this entire fiasco is going to collapse.

    And as you say, “every debt is someone else’s savings”, so everyone is going to take a hit large or small when it happens.

    I don’t want to see this, I have kids and grandkids, but the trends all point to a board clearing event and it’s going to be violent.

    • would it help if we confiscated all the pension dough and assets and put it into SocSec and then gave everyone 80 percent of current? Everyone in same pool, by same rules…

  10. People have written off the conservative comment: “They’re stealing from our children” as blather, for years.

    Unfortunately, I know of no way to prevent politicians from using largess to buy votes, and no way to cope with the commie spin-sters making the breathtaking shortfalls a “now” problem, instead of admitting it was a “before” problem which snowballed, as every pol from committeemen to Presidents kicked that can down the road…

    Politicians thought they’d be out of office, and dead, long before that $230 trillion in unfunded liabilities bitchslapped us in the pocketbook.


  11. It’s sly in the way the Fed suggested that ILLinois fund their pensions through real estate assessments rather than income taxes. Only property owners will complain, and most voters(unfortunately) won’t be affected. The tax will be forced on those who can’t simply stop working or easily move to avoid it, and their property value will decline so selling becomes problematic. The only reprisal will be in protesting their assessment, and even that won’t stop even higher mil rates.

    It’s this kind of sneaky theft that gives government and politicians a really bad name.

  12. PROPERTY TAXES are the ruin of this country….politicians use them to enrich themselves and the city,county,state employees that the politicians PAY to work for them….too much government and HIGH salaries that are supported by Property Taxes and UTILITY FEES..and no one looks after the increasing expenses of the tax payers…no one…….

    • I agree.. why should I be paying out the nose for someone else’s education.. or some fat cat making a huge salary

  13. An old friend of mine quipped a few years ago that we should have got government jobs when we were younger. I think he was right.


    Who Is Eligible?”

    An old coworker has really bad asthma. Last year had a severe attack and went into the ER. The doc said..we have to admit you tonight. She responded no give me a inhaler anything I have to be at work tonight. The doctor argued with her as to how severe her situation was..she said no I have to have this job.
    Boil it down he called her boss at the very hospital he worked for. She went to work. For years I would give forty to eighty hours of vacation to employees terminally ill. Because of how their rules are you couldn’t use your vacation or sick time.
    I quit a job I really liked because my child had surgery and I took four hours off to be there. Seems the points piled up on me. I had had jury duty twelve years prior. I left because they thrreatoned me. What’s funny is my old boss visited with my new boss and told them if they had realized how hard a worker I was they wouldn’t have ever said that to me. They had to hire more than one to do the work I did.

    • Just after I wrote the above.. .my grandson came in looking all downtrodden.. after I got nosy.. the reason. He called in sick. one time. hes been working an average of sixty hours a week.. hasn’t called in at all before.. because he called in..
      He was told that at the end of the month he was through. He just got the employee of the month honors.. a couple of months ago..
      As a bottom feeder. things like vacations and sick days aree pretty much out of the question.
      I have worked many part time and day labor.. so many that I cannot name them all.. with most you got a vacation when the company said you could. sick time.. another story.
      some places because of federal assistance want a high turn over rate.

      • they get more funds if there is a turnover rate..if you have a job.. pays decent and you have vacation hours you can use they offer health insurance.. Then count your blessings there are millions that don’t have those luxuries

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