Liberal controlled Local and State governments are slowly waking up to the fact that sweetheart pension deals for their unions are bankrupting their cities and states.
First we saw a ruling from a federal judge that states the city of Detroit can file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy and in turn cut pensions for its retirees.
“The largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history took a major step forward Tuesday when a federal judge ruled that the city of Detroit is eligible for protection under Chapter 9 of the U.S. bankruptcy code.”
“The embattled city is trying to work its way out from under $18.5 billion in debt. In issuing his decision, Judge Steven Rhodes said “the court finds that Detroit was and is insolvent.” Rhodes also said the city can seek to cut pensions for its retirees as it works to reduce its debt. He also cautioned, though, that such cuts must be fair and equitable — a signal he won’t rubber-stamp the city’s decisions.”
The Unions are upset because there was no good faith negotiating effort made before filing for Chapter 9 but negotiating is impossible when half of the $18.5 billion debt is tied up in union pension benefits. Detroit is out of money and there is no negotiating over a line item that accounts for a majority of the shortfall. Even the judge made that statement:
“But Rhodes concluded it would have been “impracticable” for the city to negotiate in good faith. “In other words,” writes Detroit’s WXYZ-TV, the city’s financial situation was “so dire that negotiating in good faith would not have been realistic.”
Next we see that the state of Illinois recently passed legislation to overhaul its pension system because it, like Detroit, is out of money.
“Illinois lawmakers have approved a sweeping plan to close a $100 billion shortfall in the state’s pension system, which would cut retirees’ benefits.”
It’s worth noting that the mayors of Detroit and the State House and Senate of Illinois have been ruled by Democrats for decades. Detroit’s city government decisions that caused its decline should be published and distributed to every Mayor, Governor and state House/ Senate as an example of what NOT to do when governing a city or state. Driving out businesses, pandering to unions, raising taxes, expanding government and failing to recognize the decline of their number one industry all contributed to the situation they are in now.
It’s sad that Liberals only realize the errors of their ways when they are faced with bankruptcy. Let’s hope the rest of the country heeds these “canary in the cave” examples and the rest of us take steps now to move toward Free Market, small government and pro business policies.