Tuesday, August 14, 2012

California: Its Fatal Addiction to Bad Policy Hurts the Poor

Tough words, but unfortunately the truth:

California: Its Fatal Addiction to Bad Policy Hurts the Poor | Via Meadia: "More bad news from the Golden State: apparently not content with creating what amounts to a free life-insurance policy for state employees, California legislators are considering creating another open-ended budget commitment. This time, the new commitment will go to private-sector workers rather than public employees. SB1234, a new bill currently working its way through the state legislature, aims at supplementing Social Security savings for private sector workers by effectively creating a secondary, state-run pension system. The Mercury News reports: De Leon introduced the bill earlier this year in response to what he called the “looming retirement tsunami” as millions of low-wage workers face financial hardship in their retirement years. He says the program would act as a supplement to Social Security by offering private-sector workers a portable savings plan with a guaranteed return. . . . But while the concept of helping low income workers fund their retirement has merit, we question the prudence of California’s headlong rush toward another massive pension liability. As we’ve amply demonstrated on this blog, California can’t handle the burdens it’s got. Adding to them under the current conditions is utter lunacy. . . .  one of the consequences of feckless policy, bad decisions, and decades of fiscal irresponsibility is that you reduce your ability to do good things because you have behaved so stupidly and squandered so much money and credit in the past. California’s fatal addiction to bad public policy hurts ordinary people in the state, and especially hurts exactly the low income workers the new pension wants to help. California can’t run its schools, sustain its universities, jail its criminals or, much of the time, pay its bills. Unfortunately, it almost certainly can’t manage an expensive new pension program — or impose a new tax without crushing the businesses that hire the poor."


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