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DougMacG
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« Reply #150 on: July 07, 2010, 09:43:47 AM »

I don't always follow other people's logic pattern.  When you need to draw an absurdly false hypothetical (an actively practicing MD below the poverty line) in order to draw the opposite conclusion, does that mean you actually agree with me?   smiley   He pays in and doesn't receive those perks.  They (in general) don't pay and do receive the perks.  Why not just welcome that widely held frustration to be expressed here on the board and move on with whatever is your view or proposal for the problem.

California without illegals is also an absurdly false hypothetical as well.  California today comes with the illegals no matter what we do in the future with the border.  The flow of illegals into California probably has more to do with the generosity of the public benefits and the sanctuary status of the cities than it does with the height of the fence.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2010, 09:47:03 AM by DougMacG » Logged
ccp
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« Reply #151 on: July 07, 2010, 10:28:18 AM »

Doug,
thank you! smiley
But it is not just me as an MD. 

It is all of us who work and pay taxes and are "above the poverty line".  And don't be sure illegals are not cashing in more than you think.  Some state we should use this E-verify system for employers to document those that are legal are ok to hire. Yet someone said that it is only 50% accurate.  Don't think for one second illegals are not taking more advantage of our system than you think.   
 
JDN states he is for stopping illegal immigration and yet all he does is post arguments against it.

IF he believes illegals pay more into our system then they take out than why is he against it?

He makes the conclusion that FAIR is of course biased but the National Conference of State Legislators is objective.  No selective cherry picking there right JDN.

Your arguments never seem to support your claims.   What is your point?

 
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JDN
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« Reply #152 on: July 07, 2010, 11:29:17 AM »

Actually, if you noticed I said "citizen CCP" not MD CCP.  Few of us on this site (I hope) are below the poverty line. 
But my point was, in response to Doug's post, that if we were in need, as CITIZENS we would be entitled to all the benefits of illegal immigrants
and many more benefits besides.

CCP; actually no, I'm not cherry picking; just looking for a reasonably unbiased source.

But CCP, I understand and respect your comment; "JDN states he is for stopping illegal immigration and yet all he does is post arguments against it."
Let me try to explain.

First, I do believe legal and illegal immigrants contribute.  Of course legal resident aliens pay taxes, etc.
But many illegals pay income taxes (withholding) too; also let's not forget sales taxes, gas taxes, etc.
Our country was built on immigrants.

Therefore, I am strongly in favor of substantially increasing, properly vetted, legal immigration (you and I respectfully disagree on that matter).

However, I believe the word "ILLEGAL" immigrant is there for a reason.  I don't necessarily agree with all laws,
but I try to obey them.  And if I don't, I accept the consequences (speeding ticket for example).
Or I try to change the law, but in the interim I will continue to try to obey them.  So let immigrants come here legally;
but for those who don't, enforce the laws.  For example I support AZ's law.  And seal the border as best we can.

And finally I guess I don't like that employers get off so easy.  There is a supply and demand issue here.  We seem to coddle the employers
seeking cheap and illegal employees, yet we blame the immigrant who merely wants a better life.  GM's suggestion of forfeiting all of their
assets seems a bit draconian, but severe penalties should definitely be in place and rigidly enforced.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #153 on: July 07, 2010, 11:36:59 AM »

"IF he believes illegals pay more into our system then they take out than why is he against it?"

Well speaking only for myself, the econ costs vel non of the illegals is not really the point.  The point is that we get to decide who comes here and in what numbers they come.  Even were it to turn out that illegals coming here were a net econ positive, there are cultural and political aspects of the question to consider as well.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #154 on: July 08, 2010, 09:46:02 AM »

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38128585
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DougMacG
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« Reply #155 on: July 11, 2010, 02:04:37 PM »

"... despite the $4 billion in pork that Byrd served his constituents over the past 19 years alone—not to mention the untold billions before observers started keeping tabs—West Virginia remains the third poorest state in the country. Government spending does not prosperity make.

When Byrd became senator in 1959, West Virginia ranked No. 39 in median family income, and No. 42 in per capita income. Today, it's No. 48 in both categories."

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704111704575354870221777334.html
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ccp
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« Reply #156 on: July 12, 2010, 09:53:48 AM »

Doug
Interesting you post this.  This AM on morning cable it was pointed out that the governor of W Virginia won by the largest margin by a governor in decades ~ 75% to 25 % in 2008.
He is a Democrat.  When will West Virginians learn?
Wasn't this the state whose union goons got JFK the Democratic nomination in 1960?

Someone could probably do a study of this.  It is not about the poeple.  It is about the politicians keeping power.

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #157 on: July 17, 2010, 07:43:58 PM »

By STEPHEN MOORE
In one of the most fiscally inept stunts in many years on Capitol Hill, Congressional Democrats have taken a pass on enacting a budget this year. Legislators will just wing it and let the $3.6 trillion fall where it may and hope the public doesn't notice a $1.5 trillion dollar deficit. But the minority Republicans have just presented their own budget plan and it's a remarkably bold and honest document that involves big cuts in government spending over the next decade and a balanced budget by 2019. The GOP budget would be a Tea Partier's dream come true if it ever were enacted.

The plan, fashioned by Tom Price of Georgia, head of the conservative Republican Study Committee, reduces federal borrowing from the Obama baseline by a gargantuan $6.4 trillion over the next decade. Not bad considering that it also lowers taxes by $1.7 trillion more than the Obama budget by making the Bush tax cuts permanent. Spending reductions start with what Mr. Price calls a "reset" on spending for discretionary programs back to 2008 levels. That insures that "temporary" stimulus funding doesn't get continued year after year. The plan also instructs the President and Congress to dedicate every penny of bailout money repaid to the federal government by the banks to debt retirement.

"We think it's essential to show the American people we can cut spending enough to balance the budget even with the big hole Barack Obama has put us in," Mr. Price tells me. His budget is a Reaganite budget, calling for tax cuts, asset sales, repeal of hundreds of wasteful programs, and across-the-board cuts in virtually every program except Social Security. "Even some Republicans will flinch from the spending cuts required to get to a balanced budget," Mr. Price concedes.

Mr. Price and his RSC colleagues show that you can get from here ($1.5 trillion annual deficits) to there (a balanced budget) through spending discipline and economic growth. Can it be done the Democratic way, with higher taxes and lower growth? Not likely.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #158 on: July 19, 2010, 10:25:19 AM »

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/19/business/19training.html?th&emc=th
After Training, Still Scrambling for Employment
By PETER S. GOODMAN
Published: July 18, 2010

 
In what was beginning to feel like a previous life, Israel Valle had earned $18 an hour as an executive assistant to a designer at a prominent fashion label. Now, he was jobless and struggling to find work. He decided to invest in upgrading his skills.


Mr. Valle, left, is living with his parents in New York as he looks for work. “Training was fruitless,” he said. “I’m not seeing the benefits. Training for what? No one’s hiring.”


It was February 2009, and the city work force center in Downtown Brooklyn was jammed with hundreds of people hungry for paychecks. His caseworker urged him to take advantage of classes financed by the federal government, which had increased money for job training. Upgrade your skills, she counseled. Then she could arrange job interviews.

For six weeks, Mr. Valle, 49, absorbed instruction in spreadsheets and word processing. He tinkered with his résumé. But the interviews his caseworker eventually arranged were for low-wage jobs, and they were mobbed by desperate applicants. More than a year later, Mr. Valle remains among the record 6.8 million Americans who have been officially jobless for six months or longer. He recently applied for welfare benefits.

“Training was fruitless,” he said. “I’m not seeing the benefits. Training for what? No one’s hiring.”

Hundreds of thousands of Americans have enrolled in federally financed training programs in recent years, only to remain out of work. That has intensified skepticism about training as a cure for unemployment.

Even before the recession created the bleakest job market in more than a quarter-century, job training was already producing disappointing results. A study conducted for the Labor Department tracking the experience of 160,000 laid-off workers in 12 states from mid-2003 to mid-2005 — a time of economic expansion — found that those who went through training wound up earning little more than those who did not, even three and four years later. “Over all, it appears possible that ultimate gains from participation are small or nonexistent,” the study concluded.

In the last 18 months, the Obama administration has embraced more promising approaches to training focused on faster-growing areas like renewable energy and health care. But most money has been directed at the same sorts of programs that in past years have largely failed to steer laid-off workers toward new careers, say experts, and now the number of job openings is vastly outnumbered by people out of work.

“It’s such an ugly situation that job training can’t solve it,” said Ross Eisenbrey, a job training expert at the Economic Policy Institute, a labor-oriented research institution in Washington, and a former commissioner of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. “When you have five people unemployed for every vacancy, you can train all the people you want and unfortunately only one-fifth of the people will get hired. Training doesn’t create jobs.”

Labor economists and work force development experts say the frustration that frequently results from job training reflects the dubious quality of many programs. Most last only a few months, providing general skills without conferring useful credentials in specialized fields. Programs rarely involve potential employers and are typically too modest to enable cast-off workers to begin new careers.

Most job training is financed through the federal Workforce Investment Act, which was written in 1998 — a time when hiring was extraordinarily robust. Then, simply teaching jobless people how to use computers and write résumés put them on a path to paychecks. Today, even highly skilled people with job experience of two decades or more languish among the unemployed. Whole industries are being scaled down by automation, the shifting of work overseas and the recession.

“A lot of the training programs that we have in this country were designed for a kind of quick turnaround economy, as opposed to the entrenched structural challenges of today,” said Carl E. Van Horn, a labor economist and director of the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University. “It’s like attacking a mountain with a toothpick. You take a policy that was designed for the best economy that we had since World War II and you lay it up against the economy that is the worst since World War II. It can’t work.”

Claiming Successes

The Obama administration argues that expanded job training has already delivered success. As part of the nearly $800 billion stimulus package begun last year, the administration increased grants sent to states for training programs devoted to laid-off workers by $1.4 billion for 2009 and 2010. Those funds came on top of $2.9 billion allocated through normal budget channels for grants in those two years.

Last year, the number of laid-off workers in job training reached 241,000, up from about 124,000 the year before, according to the Labor Department.

(Marc:  Lets do a little math here:  $1.4B+2.9B=$4.3B.  With the peak number of 241,000 (which was the number for only one of the two years) that comes out to 18,000 per person trained.  With only one out of five hired, that comes out to $90,000 a job?!?  Am I missing something here?)

“These programs are really working,” said the assistant secretary of labor, Jane Oates. “These are folks who clearly want to go back to work and we’re able to help them get back to work. The investment in job training is one that’s not only going to pay off in the short term, it’s going to help us be more competitive in the long term.”

(There's more, but you get the gist of it.)
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #159 on: July 19, 2010, 04:10:17 PM »

Having once participated in some congressional testimony, this script has a familiar ring:

The Welfare Script
The welfare state acquired its girth by following a familiar routine, over and over again.
 
America’s welfare state has grown into an unwieldy hodgepodge of programs that provide various forms of assistance to tens of millions of Americans. It costs taxpayers nearly a trillion dollars annually and experts predict that, absent reform, it will keep growing in the years ahead.

The welfare state acquired its girth by following a familiar script — over and over again. The latest performance came at a recent hearing of the House Education and Labor Committee, which is pondering yet another proposed expansion of government: the “Improving Nutrition for America’s Children Act,” an $8 billion add-on to the nation’s school-lunch and other child-nutrition programs. Here’s the routine:

Invite a star witness, in this case a celebrity chef, to draw media attention to the proposal.

Paint those supporting the plan as pure as the driven snow; smear those who object as callous Scrooges who (in this case) despise children.

Declare a “national crisis” to create a sense of urgency. In this case we face twin crises: nearly one in three children is obese, unfit for military service, and on track for adult-onset diabetes, while another 16 million kids go hungry because their parents must choose between “keeping the lights on or putting food on the table.”

Bring in a top dog from the administration to claim the moral high ground on behalf of those who stand to receive the latest government handout. Throw in a panel of “experts” from special-interest groups to up the ante on what needs to be done, thereby framing the chairman’s expensive ($8 billion in this case) plan as nothing more than a modest “first step.”

Finally, engage in some good old-fashioned political jujitsu. Invite a retired general to make the case that growing the welfare state can actually enhance our national security. And argue that “investing” billions today is the fiscally prudent thing to do because it will save much more in health and other societal costs down the road.

Such was the scene last week on Capitol Hill. Celebrity chef Tom Colicchio, camera crews in tow, asked the sort of question one always hears whenever Congress considers a welfare expansion. “Why,” he asked, “in this great country, where we produce enough food, are children going hungry every day?”

Committee chairman George Miller (D., Calif.), the bill’s sponsor, tugged on heartstrings, intoning: “We cannot ignore the fact that for millions of children, the only meals that they can count on are those they get at school or in child care.” He also touted the positive effects his bill would have on our fiscal mess. “If we work in the schools to both increase nutritional opportunities and educate kids about the foods they’re eating,” he insisted, “we have a chance to really, dramatically drive down future health-care costs.”

And, in a dramatic, made-for-TV gesture, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack tossed aside his prepared testimony to speak extemporaneously “from the heart.” Predictably, liberal lawmakers swooned, and pledged to do “whatever it takes” to guarantee every child a healthy meal — not only when school is in session, but also before and after the school bell rings, on weekends, on holidays, and even during their summer vacations. After all, as Chairman Miller condescendingly noted: “We can do all we can do for five days [each week] during the school year, but on weekends and during the summer, youngsters are often left to their own design.” No word from the chairman as to the whereabouts of their parents.

If this means Uncle Sam will have to “create [nutritional] standards for [school-cafeteria] vending machines and a la carte lines,” so be it. And if federal bureaucrats will be required, as Vilsack suggested, to instruct schools on “how to . . . stretch that food dollar” and “come up with innovative and creative ways to make vegetables and fruits . . . delicious and appealing,” then let’s get started on devising those federally approved school-lunch recipes.

Be still my beating heart.

Fortunately, this time a contrarian voice inserted a much-needed reality check into the script. “It is misleading,” said Heritage Foundation welfare expert Robert Rector, the lone minority witness, “to examine spending on one or two government programs in isolation. In fact, the federal government creates . . . and funds 71 different means-tested programs assisting low-income families, providing cash, food, housing and medical care.” Not surprisingly, he pointed out, most families that receive subsidized school meals also receive benefits from many other programs. “Proposals to expand funding on a single program,” Rector warned, “must be examined holistically in the context of the overall growth of extraordinary government spending.”

The average family with children in the lowest-income third of the population, Rector noted, already receives more than $30,000 in assistance annually from these programs. The total amount of spending on this population exceeds $475 billion annually — which is only about half of all welfare spending. Rector, who knows more about the circuitry of the welfare state than anyone, offered the lawmakers a confession: “I’ve spent my entire career on this type of population and this type of spending, and I can tell you I have absolutely no idea where all that money goes.” And then a warning: “Before you propose spending even more money, you ought to at least have a reasonable accounting of where this money is currently going in 70 different programs, all of them going effectively to the same population.”

Rector stood alone in recommending that Chairman Miller and his colleagues conduct some rudimentary “due diligence” before committing billions of additional tax dollars to this effort. Specifically, do these programs benefit their intended beneficiaries, poor kids? He testified to one of the many dirty little secrets of welfare policy: The most rigorous studies demonstrate that these efforts just do not work.

Take the oft-repeated claim that students in the school-lunch program achieve more academically: “In reviewing for this testimony, I was quite shocked to find . . . [that] even though there are continuing claims that school-breakfast programs increase academic performance, there are, in fact, no studies with control groups that show that whatsoever. Zero.”

But to Chairman Miller, his liberal colleagues, and the innumerable welfare-industry groups that feed at the government trough, none of this matters. In fact, Rector has spent two decades trying to convince Congress to view the 71 programs that constitute the welfare state as a unified category of federal spending, dispensing over $950 billion a year and growing. He argues Congress should enact a firm spending cap on these programs, allowing them to grow at the rate of inflation, well below the current unsustainable trajectory. Such a cap, Rector estimates, would not only save taxpayers on average nearly $200 billion a year, with cumulative savings reaching $1.4 trillion over the next decade, but it would induce Congress to demand real evaluations of whether anti-poverty programs actually help the poor, and then defund those that do more harm than good while expanding those that actually lift the poor out of poverty.

Now that’s real compassionate conservatism.

— Michael G. Franc is vice president of government relations for the Heritage Foundation.

http://article.nationalreview.com/438248/the-welfare-script/michael-g-franc
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #160 on: July 22, 2010, 05:28:55 AM »


Return to the Article
 
 



July 04, 2010

The 'Deem'n Pass' budget
Cindy Simpson

Once again, the Democrats have shown a willingness to bypass procedure to further their own agenda.  As Human Events' Connie Hair reported yesterday:

Last night, as part of a procedural vote on the emergency war supplemental bill, House Democrats attached a document that "deemed as passed" a non-existent $1.12 trillion budget. The execution of the "deeming" document allows Democrats to start spending money for Fiscal Year 2011 without the pesky constraints of a budget.

The procedural vote passed 215-210 with no Republicans voting in favor and 38 Democrats crossing the aisle to vote against deeming the faux budget resolution passed. 



Never before -- since the creation of the Congressional budget process -- has the House failed to pass a budget, failed to propose a budget then deemed the non-existent budget as passed as a means to avoid a direct, recorded vote on a budget, but still allow Congress to spend taxpayer money.


Representative Paul Ryan issued a statement on behalf of the House Republican Budget Committee entitled "The Majority's Budget Deemer:  An Admission of Fiscal Failure." Ryan opens with a scathing analysis:

What House Democratic leaders call a "budget enforcement resolution" is in fact just another "deeming" scheme - one that concedes they cannot meet their most fundamental governing responsibility: writing a congressional budget. They have created a masquerade that only advances their spend-as-you-go philosophy, accelerating the march toward a fiscal and economic crisis. They are doing so because a majority of rank-and-file Democrats cannot vote for a budget with trillion-dollar deficits. As even House Budget Committee Chairman Spratt has acknowledged: "You can say that that's a lack of courage."


Ryan's statement further explains that the "budget enforcement resolution" is not a "budget" or a "resolution," and he clearly reveals its deceptive facts and figures.  He concludes by stating: "This is far more than a failure of procedure or politics. It is an abdication of a fundamental responsibility by a Majority that is losing both its will, and its ability, to govern - and it is threatening America's prosperity in the process."

Throw this latest maneuver of the Dems into the pile and one wonders if "threatening" has become something more like "destructing."  If Congress can't reign in its reckless spending, America will continue its ride on the donkey's back beyond the "deem'n pass" into territory resembling a banana republic.


Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2010/07/the_deemn_pass_budget.html at July 08, 2010 - 03:13:02 PM CDT
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #161 on: August 19, 2010, 09:31:40 AM »



Social Insecurity
by Paul Cwik on August 13, 2010

Oh joy, oh joy! It has finally arrived! You wouldn't believe how excited I was to receive a letter from the Social Security Administration. In the letter, they dutifully showed me how much taxable income I have ever made. (Is it me, or is there something really creepy about that?) They showed me how much I have paid in taxes and how much my employer also "paid." Then they showed me how much my payment would be if I retire at full retirement (67 years old — not 62 or 65 like you may have heard) and if I delay "collecting" until I turn 70.

It is no secret that I turn 40 this year. That means I have another 30 years of work in front of me. I have (for fun) just taken an online life-expectancy survey, and it says that I will live until the age of 86. So let's assume that these numbers are correct. I will work for another 30 years and then have 16 years to spend it all.

According to the Social Security Administration, I will receive $2,522 a month during those 16 years. The value of that money when I turn 70 is a present-annuity-value calculation. For the purpose of this example, let's pick an easy interest rate of 5% per year. So the value of the Social Security payments (compounded monthly) for 16 years at annual rate of 5% is $335,444.57. In other words, for me to privately do the same as Social Security, I will need to have $335,444.57 in cash when I turn 70 and deposit it in a security that has a 5% annual return.

To take this example a step further, how much money would I have to set aside each year at an annual compounded rate of 5% to hit this target? Using some "quick math," we see that I would have to set $5,048.91 aside each year. Well, this does not seem too unreasonable. One might think that this is equivalent to putting away the maximum of $5,000/year in an IRA, and one would not be wrong for thinking that way.

Unfortunately, there is a larger point that has been missed. I have already been taxed for all of the previous years that I have worked. The Social Security Administration informs me that I have currently sunk a little more than $80,000 into this governmental pyramid scheme. Setting aside any interest I could have received over the past 21+ years, let's assume that they give me a lump sum payment today of $80,000.

Suppose that I take that $80,000 and put it into a security that gives me an annual return of 5% and I do not add another single cent. How much would I have when I turn 70? $345,752.00! I have already exceeded the target needed for the Social Security Administration to fulfill its "promise" to me.

Alas, I do not think that it will do me any good to write a letter to the Social Security Administration explaining that I have reached my target and that they no longer need to tax me. In fact, the letter states, quite explicitly, that I must maintain my current earning rate to collect the stated numbers. So at this point any additional taxes that come from me are just wealth extractions with no benefit to me.

You may think that this is a bad deal for me, and it is, but it is going to be much worse for those who are younger than I. At least I am still making a positive rate of return, somewhere between 2% and 2.5%.

A person born in 1988 making $30,000/year can expect to receive $1,539/month in the year 2058. The Social Security Administration says that he is expected to live until the ripe old age of 87. So that's another 17 years after retiring at the age of 70. The annuity present value of $1,539/month for 17 years at an annual rate of 5% is $212,938.88. In order to hit that target, he would have to set aside $1,132.50/year in a 5% security. This amount is only 3.775% of his $30,000 annual income.

Social Security and Medicare taxes are 15.3% of his income. If he invested that 15.3% of his income instead, he would be investing $4,590. Supposing that this annual contribution was invested each year for the next 48 years and the principal was collecting 5% interest, instead of the Social Security value of $212,938.88, he would have $863,036.55! That's a little more than four times the return that Social Security is "promising."

Or, to drive the nail home, he is paying $4,590 a year and is getting a future value of only $212,938.88. If he simply took that money and buried it in the dirt, he would have, after 48 years, $220,320! The bottom line is that, for today's 21-year-old, Social Security is a negative return.

Paul Cwik is associate professor of economics at Mount Olive College. See Paul Cwik's article archives.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #162 on: August 21, 2010, 12:03:53 AM »

When Happy Cost of Government Day hits so late it spills over into Ramadan we really should start noticing that we have a problem.  (Speaking of religious holidays, polls say more people are looking forward to November 2nd than December 25th this year.)

The nice thing about Happy Cost of Government Day falling on August 19 is that now you are good to go.  Everything you make from today August 20th on until the end of the year is yours to spend anyway that you like - like maybe a little food for the family, a new pair of shoes or maybe a bicycle for one of the kids.

You people calling it all socialism just because you work 8 months for the government are over-reacting.  For the next 4 months, it's all yours.  Get out and enjoy it!  For the way our nation has been voting and governing we are lucky to keep one day's earnings in a year.

http://www.atr.org/cost-government-finally-arrives-august-a5325#

Cost of Government Day Finally Arrives on August 19, 2010

Every year, the Americans for Tax Reform Foundation and the Center for Fiscal Accountability calculate Cost of Government Day. This is the day on which the average American has earned enough gross income to pay off his or her share of the spending and regulatory burdens imposed by government on the federal, state, and local levels.

In 2010, Cost of Government Day falls on August 19. That means working people must toil 231 days out of the year just to meet all costs imposed by government. In other words, the cost of government consumes 63.41 percent of national income.

“Two years ago Americans worked until July 16 to pay for the cost of government: all federal, state and local government spending and regulatory costs.  That government was too expensive and wasteful.  Two years later, we work until August 19 for the same bloated government.  We have lost an additional full month of our income to pay the cost of government in just the last two years,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2010, 08:41:37 AM by DougMacG » Logged
ccp
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« Reply #163 on: August 21, 2010, 09:42:08 AM »

How many in this country pay no income taxes?

So Cost of government day which is somewhat buried in our withholdings keeps getting later and later.  I think I can recall when it was March, then April then May.
Now August.

OF course one can get a government job and if one lives to say 85 they can get salary (or pension) for say 60 years but only have to work for 20 of them.

Like JDN pointed out, who in the private sector (except for CEO's and CFO's and their close buddies) get this?

I don't recall ever being asked for my opinion (AS A TAXPAYER) about what would be fair for a person whose salary is paid by taxes before this was granted to gov. empolyees at any level.

I always felt that nurses, teachers, police were underpaid but this is not what I had in mind.  I respect and appreciate all they do but with the country literally going broke we can't keep this up.

I had a union trade employee tell me he makes 48 an hour here in NJ.
He said he went to Florida to meet with people in his trade.  When they, who receive 16 or 17 an hour saw what he makes they got enraged and asked him to leave.

The power of unions.  The power of unions in NJ.  I don't know what he should make.  I don't want to make that call anymore than I want anyone telling me as a doctor what I should be making.  This came from someone in his field from a different state.

The unions ALWAYS (as far as I know ) support Dems.  Dems get loads of money for campaigns and we all know return the favors in ways I doubt we can even dream about.  I wonder how so many local politicains in NJ live like royalty. So many are rich.  Some even say that is why they go into politics.

GM noted that police officers in rural areas receive far less compensation than those in urban areas.  I wonder how much is due to unionization.

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G M
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« Reply #164 on: August 21, 2010, 10:24:03 AM »

NYPD gets pay raise

Newsday

NEW YORK CITY — Police officers got the award they were looking for when an arbitration panel yesterday awarded them a pay raise and hiked by more than $10,000 the starting salary that the NYPD felt had significantly hampered its recruitment efforts.

Rookie cops who had been paid a starting salary of $25,100 will now earn $35,881, with the hike retroactive to January 2006.

**NYPD has a union, and this pay is horrific, especially in NYC.**
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DougMacG
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« Reply #165 on: August 21, 2010, 11:25:31 AM »

GM, I did a Google search of "NYPD jobs go unfilled" and amazingly got zero hits.  That work is so fun and rewarding that people will do it without pay.   smiley  Are you counting a free gun, free uniform and squad car usage in that 25k?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #166 on: August 21, 2010, 11:30:19 AM »

NYC has a far, far higher cost of living than elsewhere.
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G M
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« Reply #167 on: August 21, 2010, 12:14:25 PM »

http://gothamist.com/2008/02/17/more_nypd_recru.php

More NYPD Recruiting Trouble as Exam Takers Decline

The NYPD's recruiting woes appear to be continuing through 2008, with a sharp drop-off in the number of candidates applying to sit for the Police Officer Exam, which is the first step to qualifying to enter the Police Academy. According to the New York Post, the number of test takers is down 20% from number of people who took the exam at the same time last year. "Slightly fewer than 20,000 have applied for the Feb. 23 test, down from the roughly 25,000 who filed last year. In October 2004, more than 35,000 registered for the test."

The decline is not for lack of trying either. The NYPD has been casting its net far and wide in search of recruits.
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ccp
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« Reply #168 on: August 21, 2010, 12:40:50 PM »

 
 
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Starting Salary
The current starting salary for a trooper is $58,748.29 (including uniform allowance). The second-year total compensation jumps to $65,662.39. Top pay for a Trooper I is $97,188.48. Troopers receive yearly increments. All recruits receive $777.78 every two weeks, plus overtime pay. Room and board are also provided while training.

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Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) - The HMO plan allows you to choose a plan from among several different HMOs, allows you to choose a primary care provider from a list of participating HMO physicians, requires no deductibles or claim forms, and only a possible co-payment for services. Coverage is not usually provided if you go outside the HMO for services.
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For an optional biweekly payroll deduction, troopers may choose a "traditional" plan or a plan offered through an HMO system.

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Under the plan offered to troopers (and their spouses and children), virtually all prescription drugs require only a co-payment of $10. Generic drugs require a co-payment of only $3.

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The program provides for a partial reimbursement for the cost of eyeglasses, contact lenses, and the cost of the eye examinations.

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Members are eligible to participate in a deferred compensation plan or supplemental annuity collective trust plan in order to supplement retirement income.

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Enlisted members are covered by a group Life Insurance Policy that provides 3 1/2 times their final average salaries in a lump sum to beneficiaries.

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Troopers who do not attain 25 years of service in the SPRS before they retire or terminate employment may qualify for State paid health benefits in retirement if they have purchased former membership for a New Jersey State administered pension plan. The former membership purchased and the SPRS time must add up to 25 or more years to qualify.
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Information or questions regarding your eligibility for any retirement benefit should be directed to the Division of State Police, Human Resource Management Bureau, Debra Hanko at (609) 882-2000 ext. 2623, email: lpphankd@smtp.lps.state.nj.us or Fred Warner at (609) 882-2000 ext. 2621, email: lppwarnf@smtp.lps.nj.us
   
 
 
 
     
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ccp
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« Reply #169 on: August 21, 2010, 12:45:01 PM »

I don't know how accurate this is.  Iselin and Newark NJ seem to be at similar rates.  I guess if one wants to be a police officer go for State Policeman, or work in NJ or LA.   I have had patients applying for jobs with local police force.  They tell me 200 applicants for one or two spaces.  It ain't too bad in Jersey is all I can say.
 
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DougMacG
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« Reply #170 on: August 21, 2010, 12:48:34 PM »

"NYC has a far, far higher cost of living than elsewhere."

Agree. I was teasing GM a bit, but as I posted previously - I hate when they tell you the pay is X when the real pay is Y.  Starting salary is MISLEADING.  In government-speak, 25k for 1st year police work is really 45k to go to school - police academy:  http://www.nypdrecruit.com/NYPD_BenefitsOverview.aspx   And after 5.5 years that becomes 91k.  Add a school teacher spouse to that and it takes you into the area we now call punishably rich. I don't know about police academy attendees, but trainees in business are not particularly valuable.  But 91k in 5 years for working 11 months of the year including paid medical, unlimited full paid for sick half pay for life for working 20 years is not something to sneeze at in this economy.

Not included in the 'salary': overtime pay, plus
    * 10 Paid vacation days during first & second year
    * 13 Paid vacation days during third, fourth & fifth year
    * 27 Paid vacation days after 5 years of service
    * Unlimited sick leave with full pay
    * A choice of paid medical programs
    * Prescription, dental, and eyeglass coverage
    * Annuity fund
    * Deferred Compensation Plan, 401K and I.R.A.
    * Optional retirement at one half salary after 20 years of service
    * Annual $12,000 Variable Supplement Fund (upon retirement)
    * Annual banking of $12,000 Variable Supplement Fund after 20 years of service (if not retiring)
    * Excellent promotional opportunities
    * Educational opportunities
    * Additional benefits are available to military personnel.

Looks to me like they know how to recruit.  Unlike private business, you can't stay at the entry level.  After 5 years and with a little overtime the officer makes over 100k for working 11 months of the year.  I'm not saying that is overpaid; I'm saying it's not a 25k job, the jobs are not going unfilled and the people are paying a high cost of living by choice.

"The NYPD has been casting its net far and wide in search of recruits."

That sounds like common sense.  Still essential jobs are not going unfilled.  If they do, then pay goes up-  by public choice instead of union and labor board panels.
-----
Speaking of cost of living, it's funny how the social extremists keep telling the happy people who moving to the x-urbs that we all need to get more urbanized, live in greater density, that it is far more efficient to live close together and too costly to run a water or sewer pipe an extra mile or two out to the edge of town.  What a bunch of B.S.
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G M
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« Reply #171 on: August 21, 2010, 12:50:55 PM »

http://abclocal.go.com/wabc/story?section=news/investigators&id=6133543

NYPD loses recruits to better paying agencies.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #172 on: August 21, 2010, 02:02:03 PM »

"NYPD loses recruits to better paying agencies."

Nothing in that story ("hundreds of city cops, many of them rookies") tells us how many of those completed the 20 years and are PAID to leave, nor does the term hundreds out of 35,000 tell us anything significant.
Still, if essential jobs go unfilled, the pay plan will be upped - and it was.  The combination of both stories tells us that the process of setting and adjusting those payscales is 'horrific'.

GM, Did you mean to quote a 'starting salary' and then refer to it as "this pay is horrific" when in fact the salary quoted ("this pay") was just over half of current total pay and only for the training period.  The pay within just 5.5 years is nearly 4 times what was quoted and likely more with some overtime.  (The story quoted without link or date was from May 20, 2008, more than 2 years ago:  http://www.policeone.com/patrol-issues/articles/1696920-NYPD-gets-pay-raise/ )

Welcome to civil service.  We hear how little they make without learning honestly or accurately hearing how much they make.  Little things like recent increases, healthcare paid and other monies put into an account with their name on it don't really count.  NYPD link:  http://www.nypdrecruit.com/NYPD_BenefitsOverview.aspx

But once again, the problem with government budgets in NYC and America is not the cost of governing like paying police what is needed to get the job done.  The problem is that the majority of government expenditures go to transfer payments for no service at all, NOT to pay for real public services like police work.
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G M
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« Reply #173 on: August 21, 2010, 03:51:07 PM »

Doug,

If you look at the base rate for academy training they posted, no one would have any shift differential or OT or step increases. Even once the academy is completed, getting paid overtime is unlikely, usually comp time is given instead.
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G M
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« Reply #174 on: August 21, 2010, 04:15:35 PM »

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/12/nyregion/12recruits.html?_r=2&ref=nyregion&oref=slogin

Sorry that this is 3 years old, but I doubt that the pay increase since then has made the financial burdens much easier.
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G M
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« Reply #175 on: August 21, 2010, 05:00:18 PM »

http://salary.nytimes.com/CostOfLivingWizard/layoutscripts/coll_start.asp

Interesting tool for comparing the cost of living from place to place.
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G M
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« Reply #176 on: August 21, 2010, 06:08:58 PM »

http://www.city-journal.org/2009/nytom_nypd.html

Heather Mac Donald
New York’s Indispensable Institution
The NYPD’s crime-fighting sparked the city’s economic revival and is essential to its future.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #177 on: August 21, 2010, 07:02:09 PM »

A very well seasoned NYPD friend responded to me thusly-- in unvarnished cop candor.  With his permission I post here:

===========

I don't like to discuss the job on public forums, but in a private correspondence I will tell you that macdoug or whatever his name is does not know what he's talking about.

If you're kid is sick u want the best dr money can buy. Not someone making minimum wage. So way should it be any different with someone who protects your life, or has the ability to take your life. The first 5 years I was on the job I would put my life on the line, then come home and decide what bill I was going to skip.

Bottom line you can't compare this to civillian work. Overtime usually means putting it on the line fighting with crackheads to make an arrest.   If you get it u earned it. Second, most jobs if you make a mistake you might get fired. Here a mistake could mean death or prison.

When I first came on, people in the private sector would make fun of you. Now they're jealous because they feel we have job security. Trust me, we don't. 

Anyway people like this make me laugh. Thanks for the info.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #178 on: August 22, 2010, 02:25:41 AM »

Crafty,  I don't suppose you quoted to him what I wrote earlier this week (next two paragraphs) on the same subject which might have helped him to understand in context that I was not saying anyone is overpaid or anyone is underpaid.  Where in my post did I write that anyway?   I don't have a dog in their fight and I didn't claim to know about their organization.  I quoted exact words from their website.  I was mostly making the point that 25k posted here is not 45k and we really are talking about roughly a 100k job (Not take home, but total compensation) by the time you get 5 years up to speed and I am still not saying that 100k is a lot of money for what a good cop in NYC does.  At the 100k level they probably see well under half of that in take home pay and that is one problem but again I was not judging the value of their work. If he was offended my statement that if the spouse is a school teacher then you are approaching punishable wealth, a little good detective work would tell him quickly that was totally political tongue in cheek because if you took any context to my posts you would know that I don't think 100 million or 500 trillion is punishable wealth, much less 200k or 25k or 45k or 91k.  I think all honestly earned wealth is good and there is no question that good cops deserve serious pay. 


Aug. 16. 2010 I wrote: "I wouldn't want to judge the real value of what anyone does, the danger that military, fire or police officers face, nor would they want to pay full value for my sacrifices and dangers as an inner city landlord.  We get what the market will bear and what it will take to get the right person to come in and do the job.

What I hate is when they disguise or deny the money we pay.  Telling us a teacher makes 50 or 60k when we pay out 90k because they aren't counting the deferred money or the benefits as pay. It is all pay. If they want portions of their pay in forced savings, health benefits, pension funds, taxes or anything else, that is their business."



THAT was my point, that pay is pay.  It all counts, even if it is low and even if major parts of it go to benefits or accounts in their name and don't show in a current paycheck, and to taxes.  How can we begin to judge the money if we can't say accurately what the money is and I was miffed at the original post for putting that information out wrong in my opinion. 

For all the insults, "macdoug or whatever his name is does not know what he's talking about", "people like this make me laugh", I didn't see anyone point out a fact that I posted wrong.  I assume he did not go to the link I twice provided where all the pay figures I posted came from.

Your friend wrote: "The first 5 years I was on the job I would put my life on the line, then come home and decide what bill I was going to skip."

Sounds like his interests may not have been well served by having more than half of his money earned not be in his paycheck those early years due to inflexible union contracts, benefits and deferrals and high taxes which go more to transfer payments (including the crackheads) than toward real public services like good police work.  Unfortunately I don't think he read that far into my post.

The remark about private sector comparisons in interesting.  In return there are civil servants who might not always count deferred compensation or benefits as pay because they think everyone gets them. I will tell you, 'Trust me, we don't'.

The interesting part of this to me from a public policy point of view is the PROCESS of how compensation is set.  It is not at all about me judging the risk, danger or value of someone else's work from a thousand miles away.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #179 on: August 22, 2010, 09:06:49 AM »

Those seem like fair points to me.
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G M
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« Reply #180 on: August 22, 2010, 09:31:07 AM »

It would be nice if police/fire/EMS/military got compensated like pro athletes, but it isn't going to happen. The taxpayers can only pay what is affordable. Most of us in those careers got into the job to protect society, not to contribute to public debts that work to destroy our society.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #181 on: August 22, 2010, 09:34:33 AM »

Amen, , , with some exceptions though e.g. the California Corrections Officers Union.
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ccp
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« Reply #182 on: August 23, 2010, 10:30:58 AM »

This was unfair to Doug IMO.

  Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process
« Reply #177 on: August 21, 2010, 05:02:09 PM » 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
A very well seasoned NYPD friend responded to me thusly-- in unvarnished cop candor.  With his permission I post here:

===========

I don't like to discuss the job on public forums, but in a private correspondence I will tell you that macdoug or whatever his name is does not know what he's talking about.

"What that Doug posted is untrue other than we hear from police officer who is offended from a taxpayer who is questioning the process of their pay?"



If you're kid is sick u want the best dr money can buy. Not someone making minimum wage. So way should it be any different with someone who protects your life, or has the ability to take your life. The first 5 years I was on the job I would put my life on the line, then come home and decide what bill I was going to skip.

"I don't see police officers in my area making minimum wage.  Indeed hundreds applying for a few spots in a very samll local town *before the financial meltdown" sounds like they are hardly applying for min. wage jobs." 

Bottom line you can't compare this to civillian work. Overtime usually means putting it on the line fighting with crackheads to make an arrest.   If you get it u earned it. Second, most jobs if you make a mistake you might get fired. Here a mistake could mean death or prison.

"I am sure there is some of this particularly in urban areas but most overtime I see is for traffic control.  Police officers are not dying in the streets." 

When I first came on, people in the private sector would make fun of you. Now they're jealous because they feel we have job security. Trust me, we don't. 

Anyway people like this make me laugh. Thanks for the info.

"I have to say this sounds arrogant".  Unlike GM or BBG here who are being reasonable.

People question and don't pay my bills frequently.  I have to repsond not just get haughty.

I want civil servants to be paid fair.  But retiring in 20 years makes no sense.  How about they do white collar crime after twenty years?  Little in this country is doen about that?

If anyone wants to get annoyed with doctors I can take it.  I agree most of us are not saints.
 
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #183 on: August 23, 2010, 11:39:03 AM »

NYPD's comments to me were made off-line.  I posted them here with his permission as a way of fomenting the discussion.  No offense or disrespect by me to Doug was intended-- as I emailed him the other day.
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ccp
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« Reply #184 on: August 23, 2010, 01:59:28 PM »

Crafty,

I didn't think you meant to offend.
I hope police officers are not offended either by me or others who post their thoughts.

No one wants their livlihood questioned.

A good case could be made that doctors are breaking the bank more then police.
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G M
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« Reply #185 on: August 23, 2010, 05:47:25 PM »

I'm not offended. I may end up getting out of law enforcement for a variety of reasons, at least on a full time basis anyway.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #186 on: August 23, 2010, 06:03:46 PM »

I think he thought I was joining the chorus who complain that civil servants have it cushy and make a boatload of money with time off etc. while he is out risking it all in tough situations sometimes like war and sometimes worse and barely breaking even.  If Crafty had thought my words were offensive I don't think he would have passed them on.  I never questioned our moderator's good faith on that or on posting the reply.  He made the effort to get firsthand input and he made the effort coming back to add a fair warning label.  My frustration was that thoughts so clear in my mind don't come out clearly after typed or received, because what he read was not at all what I was trying to say.  Participating here for one thing is an attempt to work on that.

The friend at NYPD might also have thought the true numbers in total compensation are false because his own past and current paychecks don't look at all like that, especially if he has a spouse working and earning.  I imagine he has an astonishing percentage of total pay taken from him before he sees it, good parts of that distributed to people like he runs across including the crackheads for example while his own bills remain challenging.  
As I re-posted from the earlier thought, I have no idea how to value things like climbing into a burning building (fire dept.), military or police work except to elect and trust representatives that can do what's right and attract and retain the best people they can within the fiscal constraints they face.

Unions like to negotiate salary, benefits and work rules as separate items.  We should IMO negotiate the total compensation, then let the worker designate for him/herself how they would like it distributed.
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G M
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« Reply #187 on: August 23, 2010, 06:52:21 PM »

Las Vegas Metro Police pays better and given that NV has no state income tax, you actually see more and 1000 dollars a month rent doesn't have you living next to the projects. Look at what a tiny apt in NYC goes for and factor in the federal, state and city taxes and overall cost of living for NYPD, even after 5 years, it's pretty brutal.
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G M
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« Reply #188 on: August 23, 2010, 07:03:04 PM »

**Most jobs, public sector or private don't have things like this as potential threats:

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/21227694/detail.html

PUEBLO, Colo. -- A man suspected of trying to blow up a Pueblo police officer's home was in jail Wednesday, following an extensive manhunt across the city.

Officers arrested Robert Howard Bruce, 47, at a Kmart in Pueblo on Tuesday evening.

Police had been actively looking for him since Pueblo police officer Nathan Pruce found a 30-pound propane tank on Tuesday morning, rigged to pump the explosive gas into his home.
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JDN
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« Reply #189 on: August 23, 2010, 09:16:43 PM »

While I have the highest respect for Police Officers, I think Doug's point about total compensation is well taken.

On the NYPD web page........

By the way, note, only two years of college is required to get a job; good luck making much more than minimum wage in private industry with that.

But let's look at the NYPD pay scale:

As a Cadet in the Academy (you are just a student) you start at $44,700
After 5 years you are making over $69,000
Not bad for a two year college education (you get paid more if you have a four year degree and/or military service).

And this does not count overtime pay!  Most pull down quite a bit of overtime pay substantially supplementing their total pay.

Further, check out the truly amazing benefits!!!!!  Unbelievable. 

Additional Benefits

10 Paid vacation days during first & second year
13 Paid vacation days during third, fourth & fifth year
27 Paid vacation days after 5 years of service
Unlimited sick leave with full pay
A choice of paid medical programs
Prescription, dental, and eyeglass coverage
Annuity fund
Deferred Compensation Plan, 401K and I.R.A.
Optional retirement at one half salary after 20 years of service
Annual $12,000 Variable Supplement Fund (upon retirement)
Annual banking of $12,000 Variable Supplement Fund after 20 years of service (if not retiring)
Excellent promotional opportunities
Educational opportunities
Additional benefits are available to military personnel.


As for danger/mortality on the job, well a lot of jobs are more dangerous; timber cutting, coal workers, pilots, farm workers, due to the heavy machinery. roofers, engineers and structural metal workers, sanitation workers, millers, are all placed in the top ten.  Being a police officer doesn't even make the top ten most dangerous list.  And most of these jobs don't pay as well as the NYPD.


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G M
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« Reply #190 on: August 23, 2010, 09:31:09 PM »

You aren't counting the injury rate, or attempted murders/assaults on officers. Lumberjacks don't have to worry that a tree will follow him home to ambush him and his family in his driveway.
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G M
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« Reply #191 on: August 23, 2010, 09:56:13 PM »

http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/killed/2008/officersassaulted.html

http://www.policeone.com/off-duty/articles/2026720-Off-duty-in-rural-America/

Couple of points to consider.
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #192 on: August 23, 2010, 09:57:32 PM »

Woof,
 One thing I'll throw out there is that politicians often use the jobs and salaries of police officers and teachers as tools of extortion to put fear into the citizenry about cutting government spending or resisting tax hikes. Anytime there is a budget shortfall the first thing they roll out is cut backs in law enforcement and teachers as a way to remedy the problem; of course these are the last things people want to see cut but the politicians can't seem to find anything else less needful, like million dollar studies to figure out the mating habits of the tit mouse or the placement of thousand dollar road signs touting the stimulus plan at work or funding for the public golf course. And speaking of the stimulus, note that many states haven't spent a dime of that money yet but just as the elections are coming on they are loosening it up. As an added benefit the Democrat control House and Senate are funnelling a larger share of stimulus funds to states that have Democrats that are in trouble. In other words it's just a giant slush fund they've been setting on.
                                        P.C.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2010, 10:13:14 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

JDN
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« Reply #193 on: August 23, 2010, 10:41:06 PM »

You aren't counting the injury rate, or attempted murders/assaults on officers. Lumberjacks don't have to worry that a tree will follow him home to ambush him and his family in his driveway.

Actually if you count the injury rate, police officers rank even "lower" i.e. have less injuries. 

And to use your example, being hit by a tree, or cut by a saw statistically (frequency) is a lot worse than what happens to police officers....

The problem is not finding applicants; I mean where else can you make starting 100K (package per NYPD) with only two years of high school?  Poor CCP already put in 10 years of competitive college and grueling hours before he started making 100K.  The problem is attrition; experience police officers leave after 20 years with 50% of pay.  Postpone this payout until age 65 and I bet more would stay longer.  Or like private industry fire the deadwood and keep the good; but you can't do that because of the strong Police Union.  The Union protects them, just like the teacher's union, the teamsters, or any other union.  And as Doug succinctly points out, total package is the key.  Yet, most of the public is not aware; they only look at salary not total compensation. I mean, did you look at the benefits listed on the NYPD website?  Wow!  Where can I get those benefits for rank and file in private industry?
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G M
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« Reply #194 on: August 23, 2010, 10:49:48 PM »

NYPD is the only one with unlimited sick time. Keep in mind though, you have to really be sick to use it. NYPD has an IA unit that places officers on sick leave under surveillance and verifies medical documentation.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #195 on: August 24, 2010, 11:35:40 AM »

Sidetracked by contract micro-details of local governments paying for REAL work, maybe we should next take a look at the myriad of transfer programs federal state and local that pay people to NOT work.  One of the most abused that I see with my work in the inner city is SSI.  There are times when I am studying rental applications for income and start to believe that everybody by me is getting a check.

It is hard to oppose paying small amounts, maybe 450 per month per adult, to the disabled, except when you find out that nearly everyone in certain neighborhoods is disabled, physically, mentally or otherwise.  It makes sense from a distance until you see them carrying in some very large and heavy entertainment systems and expensive furniture for them to relax all day.

One way that they are able to get a note from their doctor is that they already getting free taxpayer paid healthcare so a doctor is only a taxpayer paid cab ride and waiting room visit away whenever you need one.

The cash payment goes ostensibly to pay for food, shelter and clothing except the same people here are also receiving food stamps, free clothing and often housing programs in addition to free unlimited healthcare.  I would also observe that because of the cash and other basics free, and time on their hands because they are banned from working so these people tend to have larger budgets available for beer, pot and cigarettes than most of the rest of us might have.

CCP (and others), how is it that these doctors determine these able bodied looking adults unable to participate in 'substantial gainful activity' (while the real disabled such as those returning from foreign wars with missing limbs are not exactly floating in cash)?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supplemental_Security_Income
---
Another example I am finding is where people are paid by the government to take care of their own family member.  It is a huge, huge scandal IMO.  I will post more when I find out more like whether it is state, federal or county that is paying.

« Last Edit: August 24, 2010, 11:39:33 AM by DougMacG » Logged
ccp
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« Reply #196 on: August 24, 2010, 12:08:39 PM »

Doug,
I have frequently people coming to me for temporary disability.  Not always but most of the time they will (if covered) drag out thier time off and complain that it is justified due to some medical problem.  Usually it is obvious when they are soaking the "system" whether it be public or private for as much as possible.  I admit, that I and other doctors have a very hard time saying no.  When one is trying to be a good caring physician who wants to maintain a good relationship with a patient it is (for me at least) very hard to tell this patient they are full of it and they should get their behind back to work - even when I know this to be true.


Probably half of *all* disability is exaggerated and is abuse of the system.

I get angry myself when pts. come in making exxagerated claims but it isn't easy playing sole arbitar, judge and jury in deciding whether to give or not give medical excuses.

That is why many companies have arrangements with their own workers comp doctors who are less concerned about pissing off a person when they tell them they can go back to work.

I had one patient who is on permanent Federal disability for stress, anxiety.  He came in for a renewal of his disability papers and I simpoly looked him straight in the eye and said, " you really can't work because you are stressed out?"  His repsonse, "absolutely".  So I filled out the form with this information exactly as it was and that is that.  He gets it. 

I tell him everyone is stressed out.  Who isn't?  He didn't blink one time when I asked him.  He couldn't care less.

I don't know.  What would you do? 
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DougMacG
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« Reply #197 on: August 24, 2010, 04:12:16 PM »

CCP,  That gives me a nice understanding of how that works from your side and I'm sure you are as tough on them as anyone.  Half of it being fraud or exaggeration, even if anecdotal is shocking, but lower than my estimate.  The doctor's report should be the beginning of an application process.  It should be descriptive not judgmental for the next step.  He wouldn't conclude unfit to work, but he might say medium inflammation on the left ankle or the 7th vertebrae.  For some the issue is mental health. The patient should not be asking the doctor for a work conclusion just a medical report.  Screening and enforcement should in proportion to the resources we put into IRS.  Then there should active followup to move people from unable to work to providing something back to society of value based on their capabilities.

Speaking of government spending, I have a true story from yesterday:

County emergency assistance approved and confirmed with me on the phone a thousand dollars of emergency money to be paid on behalf of my new tenants on the exact same day that the satellite dish installer confirmed with me on the phone the location of the new dish and the placement of the large screens throughout the house. Meanwhile I don't take paid TV because of the cost and because I am too busy to watch. The story is true.  I have the address names and phone numbers.  And it is not unique.  Sorry for the generalization, but they all take cable or direct tv and the time that gets set up is on move-in, the same time that emergency assistance generally kicks in - every 6 months!

Instead of restricting things, we are advertising to get more clients into the programs.
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JDN
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« Reply #198 on: August 24, 2010, 04:38:07 PM »

I thought (hoped) affirmative action was dead?

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-reform-diversity-20100825-18,0,4400143.story
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G M
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« Reply #199 on: August 24, 2010, 04:45:04 PM »

You did? You voted for Obama with this in mind?  rolleyes
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