Bribery Legal In New Jersey


Today an anti-Christie editorial board demanded that the probe into a pension hedge fund investment involving political contributions be disclosed.  What for?

This type of stuff is legal in New Jersey and it is legal in part because the mainstream media chooses to ignore the shenanigans until such time as it may support some vendetta they develop.

Here is how the pay-to-play process works for New Jersey localities:

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Who’s the Hack?


Chris Christie has been chatty the last few days but mostly on topics like Ray Rice, ISIS, and Nancy Pelosi. On pension issues all he had to say yesterday was:
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I too believe that David Sirota’s initial story was thin but Christie calling him a hack makes me wonder….

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My Questions on General Catalyst Partners


The New Jersey State Investment Council (SIC) held their monthly meeting yesterday (as covered by NJTV) and the focus was on one particular venture capital investment and whether it was made for political reasons:
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But in looking through available information on General Catalyst Partners other questions pop up:

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Misbashing Christie On Pensions


“It’s a cheap political stunt based on shoddy, distorted reporting from an individual [David Sirota] who over and over again has been shown to be biased, willfully inaccurate, and just flat out wrong,”

NJ Governor Chris Christie spokesman Kevin Roberts responding to allegations in an AFL-CIO lawsuit

He may have some points – though not the ones I would make:

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Christie’s Shenanigans


To look at Christie is to suspect that one is viewing a future national leader.  It may not make much sense, but that does not invalidate the feeling……In the long perspective…[Christie] certainly expects that this pension business will attain no status beyond that of a footnote.

Shenanigans by Peter Christensen; (page 11)

That was 1998 and that Christie flamed out but the points made by Peter Christensen, an actuary working for the NJEA, on the New Jersey pension crisis then are worth revisiting:

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Who’s Being Fooled Here?


In boasting about fiscal responsibility New Jersey Governor Christie likes to point out that he has (or by next June will have) put more money into the pension system than any other governor in state history:
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But what he leaves out, which the state’s bond disclosure filing does not, is:

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Expect NJ Pension Panel to Peg Underfunding at $60 – $90 Billion


Detroit had pensions funded at 96.1% but wanted lower numbers to justify benefit cuts and they got them by hiring another actuarial firm to provide those numbers.

New Jersey has the same need to cut benefits and, according to a state bond document filed yesterday, they are using their pension panel to do it (from page I-52):

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