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April 26th, 2010:

Selfishness in Hard Times

We live in a city which is having significant problems meeting its budget without layoffs or raising taxes, and still maintain quality services needed by the general public, just like hundreds of other cities nationwide.

Therefore, our new mayor proposed that the city employees take a 3% pay cut across the board, which is less than dozens of private companies I know have already done. The response?

The president of the  union representing the city’s mid-level managers not only issued a flat rejection but came came out publicly and said,”Please understand that we are at war, a war of survival and a right to exist, and we will not go lightly into the night.” !!

As the newspaper aptly asked – at war with whom? Well, the paper suggests, “Unfortunately, the enemy would be every resident of the city, including those union members who live here, shop here or dine out here; anyone who pays the taxes that provide the money for the salaries of these public servants. ”

I don’t normally agree the all the views of this paper, but they are right on.

They went on to say that the pay cut was not the only alternative. They suggested that the city could raise taxes and fees, therefore making  it more expensive for those who live here or do business here – including themselves. But since there are a lot more of us than them, their 3% would be safe and cheap.

It really comes down to selfishness, with the attitude being we can’t pitch in and take less, so you people just need to pay more. It’ s not only childish it’s absolutely totally illogical. It also bolsters the stereotype of unions claiming they are taking care of their own, when they are actually demonstrating that they don’t care about others or reality.

Unfortunately, there are probably hundreds of cities out there saying the same thing.

By the way, the very next day it was announced that the city’s unemployment had risen to 9%.  Maybe the unemployed could picket the union for unfair practices.