"The Wisconsin Lie Exposed: Taxpayers Actually Contribute Nothing To Public Employee Pensions"


Rick Ungar has a great post up over at Forbes. You'll have to pop over to get the details. He speaks in tongues that I can't possibly recap, because as I've told you before, I glaze right over when anyone, including my CPA, starts in on pensions, taxes, and other financey stuff.

Here's the gist:

Pulitzer Prize winning tax reporter, David Cay Johnston, has written a brilliant piece for tax.com exposing the truth about who really pays for the pension and benefits for public employees in Wisconsin.

Out of every dollar that funds Wisconsin’ s pension and health insurance plans for state workers, 100 cents comes from the state workers.


Johnston goes on to point out that Governor Walker has gotten away with this false narrative because journalists have failed to look closely at how employee pension plans work and have simply accepted the Governor’s word for it. [...]

They are not, in fact, asking state employees to make a larger contribution to their pension and benefits programs as that would not be possible- the employees are already paying 100% of the contributions.

What they are actually asking is that the employees take a pay cut.

Suffice it to say, lies are being pushed, bought, and publicized. Corporate interests are getting their money's worth, the media is shirking their responsibility to educate America, let alone report accurately, and once again, democracy suffers as a result.

The good news? Unions and their supporters are making themselves heard and are finally having their say. Hopefully their message will be heard loudly, clearly, and repeatedly.

You can pick up the rest here.

H/t: ItzMeB

  • billyfish84

    There was a time in this country when civil employees got paid as the presiding government was able to pay from revenue received from taxes. Today employee unions negociate employee benefits and the presiding government whether the tax base can afford it or not is left to either halt services or pay the wages. This indicates to me that the tax payer is shafted because there is no voice for the people. Pay raises should be by reforendom vote by the people or there should be laws against unions for government employees. Now go puke again and wait for the next wave.

  • Arozsos

    ur so right

  • ~M

    That is not what he is saying at all. What he is saying is that the money to pay state workers does not come out of thin air. It almost seems like that is the assumption that this article makes.

  • ~G

    States, counties and muni gov's collect taxes for the cost the government needs run and for the services it offers. In turn they need workers and yes... those workers get paid with that money. We do actually perform work for this money. It is our wage and we have collectively bargained for other benefits like pensions, health ins and time off, and we have forgone raises (cash) to have our employers pay for these benefits on our behalf.

    It seems like what you really want is tell us where to shop, where to live and how to spend the wages we've earned because its your money, right?. I guess what you are saying is that you own us? I myself am also a WI National Guard member (18 years). Maybe we should cut veterans benefits next, after all that's your money too.

  • Chuck

    Could you please tell me where the money these people are paid comes from? If you are that bad at understanding how money works, do you really know what you are saying? The state of Wisconsin pays the people who work for the state from taxes collected from the people of Wisconsin. Now go throw up and read this again cause it's not that hard to understand.