Saturday, October 29, 2011

What Scott Walker Doesn't Want You To Know

Every politician, regardless of political affiliation, will use spin and rhetoric to promote themselves or a certain cause.  I get that.  I find it annoying at times, but I get that they are trying to sell us on themselves or their cause.

But sometimes, perhaps too often, a politician will cross that line from spin into outright lies.

Scott Walker has not only crossed that line into lying, but is so compulsive with his lies that he has taken up residence in that spot.

For a particular, look at how Walker's handled the whole Budget Deformation Act.

He kept pushing the concept that his Budget Deformation Act was necessary to stop the alleged damage to the state's fiscal situation.  Without these draconian and punitive attacks on public sector workers, Walker said that there would be a huge deficit and this would save tax payers sooo much money.

However, when he had to give sworn testimony in front of Congress, he admitted that his bill would not save the tax payers one red cent.  But now that he is no longer under oath, he shamelessly reverts to the same old lie.

Even before Walker was elected, he was lying through his weasel teeth.  He continuously repeated the fabrication that the state's (artificial) woes stemmed from the public sector workers being the "haves" and everyone else, even the multimillionaires, as the "have nots."  He also said that along with this, the problem can be attributed to the "expansion of government."

These statements are simply absurd.  Common sense should tell a person that much.

But if common sense isn't enough for a person, such as your typical Walker supporter, the evidence is in and guess what - the public sector and the unions are not the enemy.  In a policy brief done by Sylvia A. Allegretto, Ken Jacobs and Laurel Lucia, they made some findings that most people could have already told you:
  • Public sector employment has been steady since 1979 as opposed the to great expansion like Walker and his supporters have been claiming
  • State budget woes are not caused by public sector compensation
  • Public sector compensation as part of the state budget has declined over the years
  • Public sector employees are not overcompensated
Let's take a closer look at that last one, since Walker claimed that public sector workers are the "haves."  From the policy brief:
However, research has consistently shown that public sector workers are paid the same or less than similar private sector workers when taking into account relevant factors that affect compensation:
• A study by Jeffrey Keefe of the Economic Policy Institute (EPI and Rutgers University) analyzed wage and demographic data from the Current Population Survey and benefits data from the Employer Costs for Employee Compensation Survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. After accounting for education, experience, hours of work, organizational size, gender, race, ethnicity and
disability, Keefe found that full-time state and local employees receive 3.7 percent less in total compensation (wages and benefits) compared to similar private sector workers. xv
• John Schmitt of the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) examined wage and demographic data from the Current Population Survey and reported similar findings: on average, state and local employees are paid 4 percent less in wages than similar private-sector workers after adjusting for education, age, gender, and other factors. xvi
• Sylvia Allegretto of the UC Berkeley Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics (with Jeffrey Keefe) analyzed compensation in California and found that “an apples-to-apples comparison, or one that controls for education, experience, and other factors that may influence pay, reveals no significant difference in the level of employee compensation costs on an annual or per hour basis between private and public sector workers.” The study analyzed total compensation, including wages and benefits, based on data from the Current Population Survey and the Employer Costs for Employee Compensation Survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. xvii
These are a few of many examples that illustrate why simply comparing average pay between the two sectors, without taking into account workforce differences, is highly misleading when, in general, better educated and older, more experienced workers earn more than less educated and younger workers.
They also report that the employment costs in the private sector has grown at a faster pace than that for the public sector. The private sector employment costs from 2004 to 2009 rose by 14.7% as opposed to the public sector costs which rose by 12.6%.

The brief finds that the primary cause of the states' budget woes stem mostly from the collapse of the housing bubble. They also add that "Solutions that focus on cutting state and local budgets can be expected
to further weaken the economy." That can already be seen in Wisconsin with the fact that unemployment numbers continue to climb and that Walker is already needing to scramble to balance his budget before we're even one three months into a two year plan. As he continues to take more money out of circulation and redistributing it to his wealthy benefactors, the worse things are going to get for us.

That is why it is so crucial for the people to take Wisconsin back and reclaim it for our own.

No comments:

Post a Comment