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As American as Union Busting

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posted on Mar, 11 2011 @ 10:50 PM
reply to post by whaaa

74.2. That's how many cents the public pays Milwaukee public-school teachers and other employees for retirement and health benefits for every dollar they receive in salary. The corresponding rate for employees of private firms is 24.3 cents.

The average Milwaukee public-school teacher salary is $56,500, but with benefits the total package is $100,005, according to the manager of financial planning for Milwaukee public schools. When I showed these figures to a friend, she asked me a simple question: "How can fringe benefits be nearly as much as salary?" The answers can be found by unpacking the numbers in the district's budget for this fiscal year

•State Pension. Teachers belong to the Wisconsin state pension plan. That plan requires a 6.8% employer contribution and 6.2% from the employee. However, according to the collective-bargaining agreement in place since 1996, the district pays the employees' share as well, for a total of 13%.

•Teachers' Supplemental Pension. In addition to the state pension, Milwaukee public-school teachers receive an additional pension under a 1982 collective-bargaining agreement. The district contributes an additional 4.2% of teacher salaries to cover this second pension. Teachers contribute nothing.

WSJ Source

Average salary is a little more than 46k per year. State average compensation for teachers is a little over $75,000. In Milwaukee its over $100,000.

Would you like me to do the math for you, or are you capable of doing it yourself?

Need more sources to help you?

edit on 11-3-2011 by HaveAnotherOne because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 11 2011 @ 11:12 PM

Originally posted by ohioriver

Originally posted by queenofsheba
reply to post by ohioriver

The starting salary for Wisconsin teachers is $25k; the average salary is $46k, yet 100% of them are required to have at least a bachelor's degree,

Oh wow, $46k a year. Who can live off that and how much can you by for that? Not a whole heck of a lot. That's nothing! You'd have to have a very, very small house payment in order to live off that and buy gas, electric and groceries and try to have a little entertainment money left over.

Quite a few Americans live on less than that. And I imagine they aren't too happy knowing their taxes will go up so public union workers can have another raise or better benefits. Most 2 earner families are struggling on just above minimum wage and you feel sorry for ONE teacher making $46,000 for 9 months. Imagine how the families making less than the teachers feel when their land taxes go up. I say good that they now how to join their fellow Americans and pay into their own retirement and benefits.

I realize that quite a few American live on less than that. I worked for my local welfare department not too long ago, $46,000.00 a year isn't enough to live on in this day and age when you think of the cost of fuel, groceries, and house payments. I'm sure it's not a real easy thing to do. But yeah, they get the summers off.

posted on Mar, 11 2011 @ 11:14 PM
reply to post by HaveAnotherOne

We should just start homeschooling our kids and do some online classes. Think about overhead, would save the states millions.

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 12:27 AM

Originally posted by HaveAnotherOne
First off, someone who criticizes a mere typos in an online forum must have too much free time on their hands, or being an anally obsessive fool. Which one are you?

Hell, since I don't know how to use apostrophes, I should be the first one to criticize teachers. They taught me wrong then didn't they?

The form in which you present your argument is just as important as the argument itself. if Lincoln had typed the Gettysburg address in Tweet-speak, I don't think it would be hailed as an achievement in oratory, do you? Of course not.

@getyzbrg 4 skr & 7 yrs ago, r dads brt 4th the US lol made n librty n stuff.

And no, it's not the teacher's fault that some students just aren't capable. That would be genetics.

On the other side of that coin, the employees would be happy to have a job and whatever pay they get. If they don't like the fact that that their employer doesn't listen to them, they are more than free to seek employment elsewhere.

As yes, the argument that management should hold all the power in the workplace. The rest of us should be lucky for a crumb.

Lawsey massa suh, you's so kind to us po' ol workuhs! Yous gibs us'ns twenny-five cents an hour, an' youse dun lets us gibs yous sixteen hours a day! Shoot! I'ssa gun have mah li' chilluns an' my mammy come on up here fo DAT kinda deal, massa suh! Thank yuh, thank yuh's kindly, massa!

Yeeeeah, no. Business exists thanks to labor, not the other way around. There can be labor without business, but there will never be a business without labor (and if there IS, you can be certain it's a scam). You can have workers without managers, but you cannot have managers without workers.

The employer who does not listen to his workers runs a lot of risks; They might just decide to sit down on the job, and what's he going to do about it? They might all walk off - you would think he could hire other workers, until you realize that the community is likely behind those who just walked off, and the reasons for their walking off are going to discourage other potential employees. It is in the best interests of the employer to work with his employees.

The point of a union is to give the employees the ability to support one another when it comes time to work with management. One employee can easily be intimidated - especially one who, like you, believes their employer is a divine monarch. it's a lot harder to do that to ten employees, though.

Again, you are wrong. Employees are perfectly free to speak amongst themselves about the issue. Hell, teachers can demand more than 1 million per year and a different hooker every night, that doesn't mean anyone has to listen to their demands, which are in effect what negotiations entail.

Yup, they could do that. They wouldn't get anywhere with it, of course. it would be negotiated out pretty easily, along with lots of laughter.

If you were my employee you would be more than free to talk to other employees and come up with a list of demands. I would simply refuse to negotiate, which is exactly what the law says. There will be no negotiations. This is what we offer. Take it or leave it. Dont like it? GTFO.

And then you've got a problem on your hands. You're in a building with a bunch of your irate, dissatisfied employees. A building which, along with your bank account, is made out of their labor. Each of them have access to a telephone, especially these days. Each of them have friends and family, who each also have friends and family. We can just sit right there in the workplace, make some calls, enjoy some M&M's from the vending machine, and strip away your customer and employee base. You end up on the local news as the silly employer who refused to even discuss the concerns of his employees - remember, you have absolutely no idea what they might be, since you refused 'em from the get-go. The whole county now knows that you're an anti-worker person who's more concerned with his own wallet than maintaining the goodwill of his employees and the community that provides his customer base. You have just alienated your own source of business and ended up being a local laughingstock.

it probably would have been smarter to just hear what your workers had to say, and have a discussion with them over what they brought to the table.

I'll be honest man, with this kind of outlook, I'm not sure you could self-employ yourself at a lemonade stand without doing something to ruin yourself.

The idea of PUBLIC employees demanding more of the TAXPAYERS funds flies in the face of everything this country was founded upon.

Well, except it's not actually taxpayer money, any more than the money on YOUR paycheck is taxpayer money. In both cases, that money is earned income, derived from labor and service. if the money paid to teachers is taxpayer money, then it REMAINS taxpayer money when that teacher buys a bunch of bananas at Kroger's, and should give you equal entitlement to make demands at that Kroger.

See, teacher wages don't come out of the treasury. Here's how it works.

You start with the treasury. Some of this treasury is then taken and distributed according to the state's annual budget. A portion of that budget is Education, so however much money is in the budget for education is sent to the Department of Education for that state. That money is further divided by the Department of Education to meet the needs of the state's school districts. Some is set aside for textbooks, some is set aside for apparatus (desks, tables, pencils, you know, "hardware.") some is set aside as "discretionary" (basically meaning, "spend it when we need it") and some is set aside for Faculty pay. Faculty pay covers everything from Superintendents to summer groundskeepers, and teachers fall into this section. When teachers negotiate for better pay, they are asking for a bigger slice of the Faculty pool. Since this money has already been set aside for faculty pay, it does not impact textbook monies, or money for desks, or money for the cafeteria kitchen's stock, and it certainly does not affect the state's treasury!

They are, in effect, asking for more of the money that has already been allotted towards them.

By the by? Teachers pay taxes, too. At least, public school teachers do; some at religious private schools may be exempt.

Now, nevertheless, teachers are not "public employees." They are private employees who work for a public institution. It's an important distinction, because they do not answer to the public at large, nor should they. On the other hand you have school board members who are public employees and DO answer to the public. Claiming that teachers are public employees and that you have a say in what goes on with them... Is absolutely no different than making the same claim of the dude who mops the DMV bathroom after-hours.

What you are saying is akin to me complaining to a government official that I dont have a different Lamborghini for each day of the week and expecting government to do something about it.

Really, that is your right. If you want to march to DC and demand that every man, woman, and child in the nation be given a rubber chicken full of blue diamonds and green jello, and that they be hand-delivered by zooey Deschanel, you have that right. You can file a petition, you can call your congressman, you can fill your senator's box with letters demanding cutiepie-delivered diamond jelly chickens, and you can even get a reporter to stand up at a white house press conference and ask the president to respond. You have htat right

Really, your whole exercise here seems to be a weird attempt to hobble your own rights, out of some weird political ideology that stripping your own rights is somehow good for the country. it's very strange.

If the taxpayers up and one day decided to stop paying taxes forever, would PUBLIC workers still have jobs? No, they wouldn't. There is a reason they are called PUBLIC employees, and not PRIVATE. Perhaps you are unable to differentiate between the two. Public employees= paid with public funding. He who signs the checks makes the rules.

First off, if taxpayers - including teachers and other public employees, again - decided to stop paying taxes, employment would kind of be the last thing on anyone's mind. For starters, pretty much every business in the country would go completely tits-up, and prices would skyrocket. Pretty much everyone in this nation depends on tax funds in some form or another - even the richest son of a bitch in this country needs roads and fuel subsidies for his business to stay afloat. So if taxes dried up, yeah, jobs wouldn't be an issue for anyone anymore. You just described the perfect means to national suicide.

Second, as I just explained, teachers are not public employees, and are not beholden to you. For starters, you don't cut their checks.

Third, even if you did, that entitles you to nothing. Business is a mutual endeavor between everyone involved, check-cutters and check-receivers alike. if someone slacks or screws up, everyone is affected. And since the workforce is by far the most important part of any business (remember, you can have workers with no management but not management with no workers) they definitely get a say in operations. Either that, or the place of business is either going to have to make do with low-skilled people who ditch as soon as a better prospect comes by OR they're going to have to close shop. Unless you run a mcDonalds franchise, you've gotta listen to your workers (even then, it's still a good idea.)

Kindly post the portion of the signed law that says teachers cannot talk to each other. If you cannot do that, once again you are wrong. (Being wrong seems to be a common thing with you).

That's the definition of collective bargaining. Just because you don't want to believe it doesn't actually make it false, any more than a desire to believe in the tooth fairy makes her real.
edit on 12/3/2011 by TheWalkingFox because: (no reason given)

edit on 12/3/2011 by TheWalkingFox because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 12:46 AM
reply to post by HaveAnotherOne

Your source is lying to you. I've already explained this. Pensions come out of a teachers' own paycheck, and may never be returned to that teacher. Costrell is double-counting pensions, as I have already pointed out.

Second, those benefits only come into play on those occasions where the teacher needs medical or dental services, which is fairly uncommon. There's also a co-pay involved. The teacher can't just convert their whole benefits package into cash and go on a spending spree with it - that is an intentionally misleading inclusion.

Another place where you are being misled is the comparison between teachers and "the average worker." You can't really compare the two, and here's why; "teacher" is a pretty exclusive group, while "average worker" is not. Every teacher - ALL OF THEM - have at least eight-ten years' education to become a teacher. The average teacher also has over ten years on the job. By contrast, the "average worker" includes that teachers' students who work part-time, salting fries at Gulp 'n' Spew for six bucks an hour.

Of course, this sort of intentional misinformation is to be expected from a WSJ editorial article by a guy who pushes for privatizing public education. No agenda there, no sir!

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 01:42 AM
reply to post by ohioriver

What is the purpose of a union? It is to protect workers. Which means their working environment. Unions are supposed to protect workers from dangerous working conditions. Like being exposed to dangerous chemicals or unsafe working environments or not getting paid for all the hours they have worked.

Absolutely. When unions began forming in this country, working conditions were horrible. Little safety precautions and workers being cheated for time worked. Unions developed because of other dehumanizing work conditions as well. Long long work days and weeks. As the nations industrial capabilities increased as the world moved in to the Industrial Age, factories, smelters, production plants, assembly lines, food processing plants, etc. began working around the clock and needed workers.

At the same time, the advent of more efficient farming tools wwas forcing farm workers off the farms . At one point the development of the cotton thresher put 49 out of 50 cotton pickets out of work. One kept his job to run the machine. Remember, this was the fundamental change from a mostly agrarian society to an industrial one. Granted this change didn't happen over night but momentous non the less.

Through all of this the owner class had very little regard for the working class. All these people who had migrated from rural areas to the cities because of little work to support their families Had no choice but to take what was available. Mines, docks any place that was caught up in the increasing industrialization.

It is not the unions place to try and get politicians elected that would be sympathetic to whatever they want. Doesn't that in fact, make unions nowadays part of that ruling elite? The unions have become just as corrupt as the politicians.

Here is where we differ. The owner class ran rampant. There were few laws to govern how to run big industry. No laws to protect workers because there had never been the need. To make this shorter than it should be, the unions through their power to hold up production brought the voice of the worker to bargaining table with big business with the government as the referee, which had prior to unions seen only big business whispering in government ear. They championed the forty hour week, the eight hour day and child labor laws . Without the unions we all would be slaves today, which of course brings us to your final point.

Once unions began to really grow many of them did become corrupt. We could make a list that would go on and on, but the point is accepted.

The thing is the accumulation of wealth and power in this country continues. These mad men that would use us and abuse us for their own gain and profit have found and broadcast every fault they could find in unions while holding themselves up as pillars of industry. They kept getting stronger and stronger until what we have today which is the vote of 2010 which saw 7 out of 10 of the big financial donations to candidates coming from corporations. All to conservative candidates. The last three were union donations.

Break the unions and there will be nothing but freeway between what's left of democracy today and complete control by the oligarchs who will no longer have an opposing voice at the table because they will be the government.

Want to read a really scary book? Find a copy of "The Jungle " by Upton Sinclair. It is a factually written piece of fiction about the meat packing industry at the turn of the last century written in 1906.

Thanks for listening.

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 01:54 AM
reply to post by TerryMcGuire

You only brushed against the notion, but I just wanted to expand on it a little bit, the notion of Unions getting involved in elections and such.

First off, as i've pointed out, this does fall under first amendment rights; You can get whoever you want together to ask for whatever you want from whoever you want.

More importantly is the financial side of it. I've seen a lot of claims that unions use member dues for political donations. Well, the fact of the matter is, federal law prohibits this, and if you know of it happening, call the feds on it, 'cause that union is stealing from its members, and the heads need to be replaced ASAP. Unions cannot use member dues for political donations. It's straight-up completely against the law.

What they can do is ask for voluntary donations from members, which will be donated under the union name. That is perfectly and completely legal. The distinction is that union membersget to make a voluntary decision to support the same candidate as their union is supporting, or they can make a voluntary decision to not do so, whereas making the donation from union dues removes that decision from the union members.

I know you didn't make the claim, Terry, but I see it often enough, I figured i'd use your post as a sort of springboard

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 07:00 AM
reply to post by TheWalkingFox

Well you typed lots of stuff, yet you didn't really say much.

All that coming from a guy who believes the average teacher salary is 24k per year, and that not a single teacher in the nation makes more than 75k per year

Your record on knowing what you are talking about is not good. As for stating my source is lying, why not back it up with factual data?

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 07:19 AM
Maybe we could outsource the teaching jobs and do online schools. There would be no more buses, no overcrowded classes, no discipline problems. We could move on to the DMV, and other licensing agents and print off documents at home. Tax revenues would be an easy offshore task. We could maybe offshore the whole government! It might become faster and more efficient and get rid of the jobs at the same time. How many more american jobs will be outsourced before the unions realize that they they now have to compete in the real world and not some protected microcosm of american isolationalism. We will not bring the jobs back, until the american people decide that they need to work to feed themselves the government will no longer be able bail them out. We now have over half the population receiving some sort of government assistance, it has to end, the government cannot go on this way. The old way of life here has ended. Welcome to the third world USA.



posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 07:33 AM
This entire thing in Wisconsin was only about one thing:

Destroy democratic support by destroying 3 of the 10 largest political sponsors...the 3 that aren't supporting the GOP. Shepherd Smith was 100% right...yes, they got something right on Fox "News" for a change, at least Shep did.

This is a fight for the middle class, the entire budget deficit is being balanced on the backs of the poor and middle class, while rich people get more tax breaks...just like large companies.

Funny enough, the budget deficit of Wisconsin represents less than 0.5% (!!!!) of the budget...which should have made it abundantly clear why balancing the budget was never the major goal

And the final analysis:

Hell, the workers AGREED to the proposed salary cuts!!! They only made a fuss when Walker also stated that collective bargaining rights have to go...which again, makes it very clear that balancing the budget was NOT the goal of all this. Walker is NOT working for his citizens, he is working for CORPORATIONS that PAY HIM.

It's a great example why politics in the US are screwed up...they don't work for the citizens anymore, they only work for themselves (so they can join their private industry sponsors after a while) and the corporations that pay for their campaigns.

Citizens are like people watching a WWE wrestling match. The game is rigged, yet the crowd still cheers

edit on 12-3-2011 by MrXYZ because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:08 AM
Collective bargaining is the linchpin to work stoppage and stikes and as such is unacceptable and has to go.
No employee has the right to prevent the employer from finding other options beneficial to the taxpayer.
While organization is not unacceptable, what inevitably happens ie always degenerating to threat and intimidation and obstructing other options of the taxpayer is unacceptable.
Unions cannot represent the middle class because they are far outnumbered them and provided benefits that exceed and are extorted from the middle class. Its a fiction that that which exclusively feeds upon prey , by it's very dependence on its prey, can in any way legitimately represent it's preys own best interests.
But such are the fictions and perversions of logic promoted by the highest offices of this land.

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:14 AM
As soon as I found out that the police were getting a break, it all made sense. No government, unless they have a cult like following (NK) would ever diminish the morale and incentive of its enforcers. This is actually the most transparent action taken by government recently that PROVES that the police are not there for you, but for the government.

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:15 AM
Government union employees will find no sympathy from the private sector. The private sector buoy’s the union pensions of government employees and keeps them going while they pay into their own 401k and their own health care packages without any help from any organization. All this comes out of their paychecks. The private employees pay their own way and the unions. To hell with them!

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:18 AM
reply to post by FriedrichNeecher

Wrong! It makes sure employees are treated and paid fairly and without discrimination. This wasn't about taking down a DEM sponsor and nothing else

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:39 AM

Originally posted by HaveAnotherOne
reply to post by whaaa

There is no right to bargain for more of the taxpayers money.

If they are unhappy with what the taxpayers provide them, they are more than free to try their hand in the private sector.

I'm gonna disagree somewhat.
Unions may argueably be able to bargain for more money, that's not the real issue here, but they shouldnt bargain for it with their own representatives or parties that will benefit individually and singularly and separately from the taxpayer/employer..
Taxpayers should be involved in the bargaining directly as the best representatives of their own interests and if the taxpayers decide that other options to unions are in their best interests, then they should ba allowed to pursue them without fear of violence from stereotypical, widely acknowledged union thuggery.
In actual fact other than unions engaging in "bargaining", none of the other conditions are acknowledged or allowed by the unions, as their mandate is only enforced by threat of violence and prevention of other workable options. That union entitlement mentality is ingrained and in this so mischaractorized and unrealistic in the creation of union culture to justify violence at their depersonalized and essentially defenseless prey, thuggery will prevail in order to reeducate the defenseless public in this philosophy in short order, and you can imagine what the police will do to you about it..
I think the operative concept to take away form this, is that the taxpayer has no true or able champion or fearless representative, as even Walker asks only a small fraction of reality be applied to the privileged class, and in no small measure mindful of the violence and destruction and no doubt murders which would occur. Walker or others making similar demands, are still selling the taxpayer short and as such making only symbolic changes in face of an inevitable melt down that as yet only a tiny minority is willing to face. In any respect the whoe public schools system operation issue will become insignificant relative to other, greater problems.
edit on 12-3-2011 by FriedrichNeecher because: youre gonna get it

edit on 12-3-2011 by FriedrichNeecher because: youre gonna get it

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 09:56 AM
I think public employees are entitled to have weekends off, sick pay, health care, and the basic rights that the union movement gave the American people.

We should all remember before unions we had no rights in the workplace

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 02:17 PM
reply to post by inforeal

And now that there are workplace protections in place, there is no need for unions.

Abolish all of them.

posted on Mar, 12 2011 @ 02:25 PM

Originally posted by HaveAnotherOne
reply to post by inforeal

And now that there are workplace protections in place, there is no need for unions.

Abolish all of them.

Even if the company has Insurance the insurance companies will fight the claim with their bevy of lawyers and leave the working man to wait months or years to get compensation. If ever.

My union affords at least some health insurance that my employers refuse to carry. And how is an American working man supposed to fight corporate lawyers when just barely making enough to pay his mortgage and feed his family?

Your ideology has gotten in the way of your common sense.

posted on Mar, 13 2011 @ 04:10 PM

Originally posted by HaveAnotherOne

Average salary is a little more than 46k per year. State average compensation for teachers is a little over $75,000. In Milwaukee its over $100,000.

Would you like me to do the math for you, or are you capable of doing it yourself?

edit on 11-3-2011 by HaveAnotherOne because: (no reason given)

I will do the math for you

This propagandist BS has been making the rounds since the debate began.

Your PRIVATE EMPLOYER PAYS...unemployment contributions (both state and Federal), disability insurance, 401k employer contributions, healthcare insurance etc. Social Security (6.2% paid by employer), Medicare (employer contribution).

Dental? Vision? Maternity/Paternity Leave? Vacation?

And those are just the basics...let alone if you want to offer competitive or good benefits.

I will give you that average teacher pay in WI is 46k.....and that it costs an additional 29k to provide benefits.

To imply that other private sector employers do not also pay 30k per employee or much more for benefits is outright BS. I spent a good portion of my life in the employment industry.

BTW - Teachers don't get Social Security...wrap your head around that one while you are at it.

Just ridiculous effen math that the right wing puts forward.

How Much Are Your Benefits Worth?

100% Value- Many companies offer benefits packages that represent an additional 100% of value to the average employee’s base salary. In other words- the cost of the benefits the employee receives is equivalent to the amount they receive in salary. If you make $40,000 a year and get $40,000 a year in benefits- it gives you a bigger picture of what you actually earn from your employment, doesn’t it?

Any idea what your benefits package is worth?

So teachers collect maybe 63% percent of thier crappy pay level in benefits...where as the private sector averages 100% and pays much better?

Geez...the BS is mind numbing.
edit on 13-3-2011 by maybereal11 because: (no reason given)

edit on 13-3-2011 by maybereal11 because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 13 2011 @ 05:04 PM

Originally posted by D1Useek
Government union employees will find no sympathy from the private sector. The private sector buoy’s the union pensions of government employees and keeps them going while they pay into their own 401k and their own health care packages without any help from any organization. All this comes out of their paychecks. The private employees pay their own way and the unions. To hell with them!

Oh yeah?

Just when the Democrats needed something to rally around; Walker gave it to them.
If this were a poker game; Walker overplayed his hand, bluffed and got hammered.

edit on 13-3-2011 by whaaa because: (no reason given)

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