Monday, June 04, 2012

this devil had the nerve to hollar "let my people go!"



Long, long ago(1980s) a 'Glorious Deal' was struck in Springfield, Illinois. Chicago wanted to get control of the failing Chicago Public Schools but suburban Republicans refused to allow Chicago Public Schools to 'secede'from the State Board of Education unless the State of Illinois agreed to pay for the teacher pensions of all suburban school districts and the pensions for all Illinois
public university and junior college teaching faculties.

The Illinois university/CC system also have the ability to tax to pay pensions but don't bother doing it.

Over the last 30 years, the entire Illinois State pension liability has risen to $53 billion dollars(2010) of which $38 billion(72%) was suburban/downstate teacher's pension and $14.3 billion(27%) was state university/CC faculty and all other state employee pensions(judges, state
troopers and other state workers) totalled <$1 billion(1%).

http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/Illinois_public_pensions

So what has this to do with downstate Republican State Rep Mike Bost's tirade(who squealed from the floor, 'Let my people go!') ?

At this time of great sacrifice(eg Medicare is getting slashed), IL House Majority Leader Mike Madigan inserted a 'poison pill' into the Pension bill ending 'the Glorious Deal' and forcing local school districts/colleges to pay the pensions of their own teachers (oh horror!). In Illinois schools are paid by property tax levy(schools are ~75% of property tax as is) and ending the Glorious Deal would unleash the Mother of All Property Tax Increases.

For Illinois conservatives this is a truly nuclear option.

Since Bost's Teapot explosion, Democratic Governor Quinn directed the Republican leader Tom Cross to try to mend the Pension bill without unloading the teacher pensions properly on to suburbanites/downstaters but Chicago's Madigan said he wants the poison pill included.

Quinn is terrified that not dealing with the Pension bill will cause Wall Street to downgrade the Illinois' terrible credit rating.

As of today there is still no compromise.

Mike Bost became unhinged at the possibility that his constituents' free ride was ending and for him to support that ending in the name of financial responsibilty would unleash a tsunami of property tax increases would amount to political suicide.

This is the real story of our current crisis---conservatives and the wealthy want to balance the books on the backs of the poor and middle class, 'let someone else pay for it!'( even though the poor simply haven't the money to do it) and given their superior lobbying abilities that is exactly what will happen.

The rich who fret over 'subsidies' to the poor and middle class, can't bear to lose a penny from the MUCH larger, MUCH more secret subsidies they suck from the system.

If this occurs, America will become more Haiti-like with the 99% masses sunk into the pit and the 1% comfortably living in chateaus. And these were also the condition in 1789 France.

"Qu'ils mangent de la brioche," said the Queen of France.