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Great article Jim. I agree with you. Civil servants should never had the richest compensation/benefits to begin with.

But one thing troubles me. Remember why unions were formed in the first place. If they are dissolved now ---- what will happend. The greedy will run amok --- just like they are in the private sector.

I don't think we should throw the baby out with the bathwater. Rachet back progression pay, revise defined pension to defined contributions/401(k), etc. But I'm not in agreement with those that want to banish unions.

I know what the unionized employees were told at American Airlines --- hang in there and you will get pay in ___. Has never happened. Of course they still had their jobs.

I am not pro-union. But with the private sector running amok I don't think the answer is to dissolve unions and put even more people at the mercy of corporations.

Sorry Jim --- can't agree with you on this one.

Who is arguing to end unions? Certainly not me. I have been a union member and have represented union positions in many situations. My point is simply that public sector unions (fire and police, for example) tend to hold disproportunately inordinate power which enables them to threaten any group of voters who do not grant them extraordinary pay and frequently unaffordable benefits. Every elected public servant knows what I mean.

Deals cut in good times based on expectations of permanently inceasing tax revenues can come back to bite you. Workers don't have to be organized to be powerful; but negotiators on both sides must be prudent and responsible. Unfortunately, we have inherited the wind, stuck with deals made by greedy and short-sighted people who disregarded the common good in favor of partisan advantage.

I've been a management rep. in public sector negotiations for 36 years, and everything in this article is true. The "corruption" usually occurrs w/ elected officials who are beholden to union dues money for election or re-election. However, I have also seen Public officials who were afarid to make waves and say no to unions. Jim

Thanks for the confirmation, Jim P. Agree that "it's just politics" more than deliberate malevolence, when bad things result from any side in a dispute.

Nevertheless, few politicians can survive an issue where the paramedics bus voters from the retirement communities, for example. Search the phrase "public sector pay compression" for this old article http://www.erieri.com/index.cfm?FuseAction=NewsRoom.Dsp_Release&PressReleaseID=112 and correct me, if appropriate. I've failed to find any disagreements so far. Sad to say...

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