Monday, May 6, 2019


               Depending upon whose statistics are used, today nationwide we have unfunded government employees’ pension liability somewhere between one and six trillion dollars!  Even at the lower amount, that is a debt of about $10,000 for every man, woman and child in our country!  Mostly you and I will be all right, but our children are in deep financial trouble – and our grandchildren are almost certainly bankrupt!  And this is just using the lower numbers!  So what is the threat?  Consider that in 2008 the City of Vallejo, California, with a population of only 100,000, had a pension debt of more than $83 million, and that debt threw the city into bankruptcy.   As a result, the City of Vallejo had to cut employee salaries, raise its pension contributions, close its fire stations and lay off 40 percent of its police force.  By 2014, one-third of its fire stations remained closed and crime rates had increased, including a tripling of the homicide rates.  What a legacy we are leaving for our descendants!  So what is the answer?  The Libertarian values of open and honest discussion, and financial responsibility!
                According to the Reason Foundation, addressing pension reforms is much like attempting to lose weight.  First you must recognize the need, and then you must actually do the necessary work to shed the fat.  On the positive side, and with the Reason Foundation’s help, the entire State of Michigan offers us all some hope.  After an in-depth analysis of its problems, the state now has embraced a new program that, first, places all new teachers into an auto-enrolled and defined contribution plan similar to the private sector’s 401K programs and, second, is accelerating the pay-down of tens of billions of dollars in unfunded liabilities.  So Michigan is successfully facing its problems.  And now Reason is also working with the State of Arizona toward similar ends.  The reality is that our system of government gives elected politicians little or no incentive to be concerned about the future – just about the next election.  So it takes public pressure to change that reality.  But all caring people should demand that we join the Reason Foundation’s efforts and face this financial irresponsibility immediately!  Our Legacy is at stake!

Quote for the week: A former stewardess for Southwest Airlines told me that on those few occasions in which their Boeing 737 airplane had a hard landing, and most of the people in the first few rows had stunned looks on their faces, she would grab the microphone and say: “Okay, I know that was a hard bump.  But it’s not the crew’s fault, and it’s not the airplane’s fault.  It’s the asphalt.”

Judge Jim Gray (Ret.)
2012 Libertarian candidate for Vice President, along with
Governor Gary Johnson as the candidate for President

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