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Are Public Employee Unions To Blame For States' Budget Crises?

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Politicians give the rich tax breaks and then cry foul blaming the unions. That is the reason for the underfunded pensions. Has nothing to do with CB, has nothing to do with unions, everything to do with corruption!

This graph would be better if it were color coded say collective bargaining states in blue, non collective bargaining in red. that way one could (or at least might) see a general trend rather than selecting four states which may have been chosen to prove author's thesis.

This is all interesting, but mostly misses the point: public sector workers have bargained for pension benefits that are collectively at least $1 trillion underfunded (according to Pew) and $3 trillion underfunded (if you don't make the wildly optimistic assumption that investments are going to make a guaranteed 8% every year). Whether or not they caused some other fiscal and budgetary crisis, public sector pensions are a fiscal crisis unto themselves.

Is this the right question to ask? Shouldn't we be looking at the interplay between "cost of government" and higher taxes in each state. While I don't know for sure, it seems that that might produce a different result for collective bargaining.

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