I should’ve gone into public service

Pensions in the private sector are long, long gone. In the public sector however it’s a different story as they are alive and well.

Many people have pointed to pensions as a major cause of the problems our country faces, at least on the State and Local levels. Many also point to the pension liabilities as one of the reasons why State and Local taxes need to be raised. Look no further than California for plenty examples of pension related problems. But, are these real problems? Or are the fabricated?

Overall, this is WAY to big of a topic to cover in this little ol’ blog, so I’m just going to highlight one example.

Alameda County’s Administrator, Susan Muranishi, a 38 year veteran of the county is clearly a high performance player. I’m not sure what a County Administrator does, however, it must be a role that very few people are qualified for, let alone are rock stars at the job who deserve a lifetime pension.

Yes, Muranishi, at 63 year’s old will earn a wage, on behalf of the tax payers, for the rest of her life. I’m sure she’ll have many, many years left and, based on the check she’ll be receiving, she’s going to be living very well indeed.

You see, Muranishi will earn (?) over $423k per year for life. No, you read that right, over $423,000 per year after miscellaneous bonuses, etc. You can read the details of it here.

Does anyone think this is right? I understand that there’s a contractual obligation, but going forward, this makes no sense, is not sustainable and will burry our Local, State, Federal governments, you, me and our kids with a level of debt and obligations that will make the problems in Greece and Cyprus seem like the problems my dog has deciding if she should nap on the sofa or my bed – meaningless.

Really, you can’t tell me that whatever a County Administrator does in the 7th largest county in California (per 2010 census), deserves to be paid each year in retirement – for life – an amount more than the President of the United States (FYI he earns a salary of $400k).

This is a joke. Yet, unfortunately, is not.


About CubicleViews

Observations, thoughts & random bitching about cube life, food, beer, wine, whiskey and sometimes politics. Living the dream in a 6×8 doorless polyester walled cell.
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11 Responses to I should’ve gone into public service

  1. What’s really sad, is the people that worked for her receive no pension. They probably have to rely on a 401K plan that will keep them in cat food (maybe) till they die. At least that is the way it is here in our local state government.

    • CubicleViews says:

      In my opinion they should all have to rely on a 401k or like retirement plan including her. Just like everyone else in the real world.

      That’d allow for the money to be used in a much more productive way.

  2. Carrie says:

    Most higher up’s salaries are stupidly high. I’m sorry, but does ANYONE deserve to earn more than $150,000? I think that is a reasonable sum for a CEO.

    The divide just keeps getting bigger and people wonder why the economy is crap. I’m coming at this as a Canadian so obviously the situation is slightly different but there are many similarities as well.

    • CubicleViews says:

      In my opinion no one deserves anything-they earn it. I’m all for free market societies-if the market demands people be paid $150k, $250k whatever.

      Is her salary warranted? I dunno perhaps, but her pension is ridiculous and obscene.

  3. Love your takes on current events – telling the news like it actually is. Or at least saying what we’re all thinking anyway.

  4. lablover22 says:

    As a fellow Californian, I find myself overwhelmed with the amount of crap, injustice and complete ridiculousness of our budgetary system- on most levels. To me, this is a perfect example of the twisted way things shake down. Truth be told, I would assume no one in our fair state has any clue about situations like these. Most just scream about an unbalanced budget and the rate of taxes. If we truly knew examples such as these, our hair would catch on fire! I wish I had an answer. Like you, I believe in the concept of a free market. I don’t believe in government intervention on all levels. So where do we draw the line? When is is ok to for them to intervene, put a cap and make choices for us? Sodas? Guns? Pensions? I wish there was an easy answer. Alll I know is my family could not be taxed any more than it is already- from income to property we pay out the ass. And although I may not live in your county, I’m sure San Diego county has its fair share of horrifying examples. My life is not difficult. We can keep a roof over our heads and pay for private school. I am not complaining because I want MORE. I’m complaining because it simply feels unjust and in a world where we strive to teach our children about fairness, this is a tough reality to swallow.
    P.S. thanks as always for giving us perspective and something to think about;)

    • CubicleViews says:

      Generally speaking, I believe the government should stay the hell out of our lives and stop telling us what we can/can’t do, etc. I fully believe there is a need and requirement to pay taxes. And, while I’d rather not pay any more taxes, because like you we’re taxed over 50% when you factor in everything at all levels, but if you want more you best first prove to me that you’re not blatantly wasting a TON of the $’s you are already taking from me.

      Thanks for the comments Vicky – always good (especially since you pretty much agree with me!)

  5. Oficinista says:

    Wow! And here we were, thinking Spain was the only country where politicians and civil servants are rich for life. Not that it makes me feel any better… I keep hoping the crisis will result in some major change, but so far, here at least, we haven’t seen it.

    • CubicleViews says:

      Hi Of, one thing is for certain, generally speaking everywhere is F’d up. It’s just the degree of being F’d up that varies.

      One thing that I’ve noticed – at least here in the states, which is giving me a glimmer of hope, is that the press is starting to turn corner and publicize these types of stories more as being “outrageous”.

      Hopefully, the tide is turning.

  6. Pingback: The Weekly TPS Report – March 29 | The Cubicle Views

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