[p2p-research] Post-Depression first: Americans get more money from government than they give back | csmonitor.com

J. Andrew Rogers reality.miner at gmail.com
Wed Nov 25 17:47:47 CET 2009

On Wed, Nov 25, 2009 at 3:54 AM, Michel Bauwens <michelsub2004 at gmail.com> wrote:
> I must say I strongly disagree about the blaming of the unions ...
> the unions were defending not just their reasonable incomes (how can a wage
> be greedy combined with the neoliberal fleecing by the top 1%), but the
> availability of public services,

That's the problem, very little of the money went to public services.

Instead they spent money continuously building more prisons, because
the prison union is extremely powerful, with the requisite prison
guards making six figure salaries.  I'm not blaming unions generally,
it was the government employee unions that looted the state. I have a
lot of relatives that work for the state of California, and while they
like the very high wages obviously, they don't deny the deleterious
effects of the unions on state governance either.

> on the other side the tax revolt fueled by the reagan right made it
> impossible to level realistic taxes required for such public services ...

Taxes in California are very high, higher than surrounding states.
Yet they consistently generate worse and vastly more expensive
services than the same neighbors.  Why does it cost California 12x as
much to build the same piece of highway as neighbors, with lower
quality implementation?

You are taking a very ideological view of this, but it is much simpler
than that. The State of California is deeply corrupted and
extraordinarily wasteful even by the standard of most State
governments. We are talking about a State that has proven so
incompetent at delivering basic services that residents of some of the
most left-wing areas of the State have successfully sued to privatize
projects in order that service be delivered after several years of
getting nowhere on a project that should only have taken a few months
and modest amount of money.

J. Andrew Rogers

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