Union Manufactured Confusion Coalition

Defined Benefit plans in the public sector are a disaster as the actuarial/political cabal has consistently undervalued their costs to the point now where defaults are inevitable – which is something unions representing public employees do not want to hear so they use a good chunk of their members’ dues to create an alternative reality.

The National Public Pension Coalition (NPPC), based on their latest 990 filing, gets about a million dollars annually from various unions to:

“promote social welfare by educating the public and promoting public policies that support defined benefit pension plans for public employees.”

To that end they put up a blog post yesterday:

It’s well-known that public pension funds took a major hit during the financial crisis. We’ve written before about the steep drop in funding levels from 2008 – 2009 when the economy was crashing due to Wall Street greed and incompetence. The story that’s less well-known is that the majority of public pension funds continue to recover from the depths of the recession, as a recent report from the National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) details.

NCPERS is a trade association of public pension plan administrators, trustees, and investment professionals. These are the folks who actually manage public pension funds and administer benefits to retirees. Each year NCPERS surveys its members about various aspects of public pension plans from funding level to investment performance to cost effectiveness. The recently released 2016 survey documents healthy pension funds that provide a secure retirement to firefighters, teachers, librarians, and other public employees.

….

This report is confirmation of what we already know: public pensions work. They are a cost-effective way to provide retirement security to working families. While pension funds did take a hit during the recession, they continue to recover each year through smart investing and cost-cutting measures.

NCPERS has a similar agenda and funding source to NPPC and the report mentioned includes this explanation of their methodology:

For the 2016 study, 159 respondents provided feedback to NCPERS using the most recently available data. Of the 159 respondents, 71 also responded to the 2015 study.

Yes, they sent out questionnaires. Did New Jersey respond….or even get one? And the questions ranged from the ‘what are you doing right’ variety:
nq-1

to a grudging acknowledgement that unfunded liabilities might exist (followed quickly by the fluff):

nq-2

33 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Trump administration cites alternative facts to more of this fake news! Back in the US back in the US back in the USSR.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 1:31 pm

    Speaker Ryan would like to reduce social security payments and increase participant payments for Medicare, yesterday because added that he would like to reduce regulations for the financial services industry, which already steals enough individual and group retirement monies, I guess the new normal will be from the worksite to the cemetery. You can tell what industry this puppet is owned by,blowing taps for the late great USA.

    Reply

  3. Posted by NY on January 27, 2017 at 1:32 pm

    There seems to be some controversy over whether “defaults are inevitable”. If they get their way, rather than be stiffed by PERS/etc “defaulting”, the pensioners will just be paid out of ever-escalating taxes on the worker bees.

    Reply

    • Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 2:34 pm

      The workers include present elected official.

      Reply

    • Posted by dentss dunnigan on January 27, 2017 at 4:04 pm

      New Jersey has one of the highest if not the highest poverty rates in the country it’s now over 11% of the population ,my bet is they believe default is inevitable if not certain .Residence here are barley holding on ,were also the highest state with foreclosures. The dim wits in Trenton are trying despertly trying to keep taxpayers here hence the tax cut for seniors any whif of a tax increse and the real stampede to the exits will continue . …They better come up with a way to tax robots because the’ll be the only thing working in a few years …

      Reply

      • Posted by NY on January 27, 2017 at 4:16 pm

        I agree with your sentiment: all of this is true, and it’s not a good situation. However I think the pensionholders dont give a damn (why should they?) and their current expectation is that come hell or high water there’ll be no ‘default’, the checks will just keep coming and the tax rates will just keep increasing if necessary and those eyewatering tax rates will be someone else’s problem, enforced by the courts as and when necessary

        Reply

      • Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 5:22 pm

        Let’s be honest only the military deserve their P&B they earned and we’re promised! Which BTW can be collected well before SS age and funded by Federal taxpayer dollars?

        Reply

      • Posted by boscoe on January 27, 2017 at 8:01 pm

        DD: What is the source for your claim that New Jersey “has one of the highest if not the highest” poverty rates in the country? That is not reflected in Census data or most other measures, including poverty adjusted for cost of living.

        Reply

  4. Posted by bpaterson on January 27, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    well, if the unions want to remain oblivious, then the citizenry should too and nothing to change….right up to the implosion. What me worry?

    Reply

    • Posted by Anonymous on January 30, 2017 at 1:25 pm

      That’s funny. You realize that before the state touches pension, they will have to default on all of their state debt right? It’s happening in Puerto Rico right now. You’ll see the turnpike and the GSP up for sale/lease in the next few years–right after the state talks about not being able to pay their debts.

      Reply

  5. Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 4:55 pm

    Well there may be some hope now that we have a POTUS that cares about the working class where no one will be forgotten? As I was suddenly awoken from my bad dream!

    Reply

  6. Posted by NY on January 27, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    Yes: with Hillary it was clearly going to be Obama’s policies extended indefinitely. With Trump, no one’s really in a position to credibly predict what he’ll do, so it’s simply wait and see (and hope)–

    Reply

    • Posted by Anonymous on January 27, 2017 at 5:46 pm

      Ever the optimist, I’ll give you that and no more.

      Obama leaves Trump a lot better off than Bush left Obama. Higher debt and anemic growth but no in the depths of the Great Recession!

      Get it done for the greater good when those actions are in direct conflict with he and his billionaire empires? Wait and see indeed!!

      No excuses with control of the POTUS, both houses, and soon to be SCOTUS…..

      Reply

      • Posted by NY on January 27, 2017 at 5:53 pm

        Exactly — we rented him for 4 yrs, no excuses, and will evaluate him on what if anything he’s accomplished, inc (per this site’s theme) how he deals with the gathering retirement storm, inc. SS/Medicare, public pensions, and the rest of seniors that have only 401Ks/IRAs with their fingers crossed that he doesn’t do anything to let the air out of the capital markets…have a good weekend.

        Reply

        • Posted by Anonymous on January 28, 2017 at 7:30 am

          NY does dealing with SS & Medicare include keeping your campaign promise (ie no cuts)? Or more of the swamp Fox politics, cut them to get your tax cuts, primarily, for the rich? How hypocritical will his words ‘no one will be forgotten’ be if he agrees to SS and Medicare cuts when ALL other Federal pensions have an equal or greater deficit than the combined State and Local pensions? Share the pain at ALL levels of government for the greater good – fat chance!

          Reply

          • Posted by NY on January 28, 2017 at 8:24 am

            i agree w/ you: he might do what he said and he might not. no one knows. his only consistency is ‘flexibility’, as he said in one of the early debates. the tragedy of the retirtement/pension crisis is that there are retirees genuinely deserving (the crippled police/FF mentiond above), there are retirees genuinely in need, and there are also retirees who meet neither of these criteria. in total the expectations/claims of these 3 groups to consume without producing are increasingly crushing and will become politically explosive in the next few years, but no one in power has yet put forward plans that defuse that explosion while protecting the genuinely needy/deserving retirees, which i dont begrudge and hope others dont as well. maybr trump will and maybe he wont, hence wait/see

          • Posted by Anonymous on January 28, 2017 at 8:50 am

            Fair enough NY on the wait and see but what’s your gut comfort level on a scale of 1 to 10? Considering Trump’s way of handling such liabilities in the private sector is via bankruptcy without regard for any of the relevant groups you described? BTW I’m at a 2.5.

            If his economic growth is based on unsustainable money manipulation and trade wars that bubble will burst.

    • Posted by Anonymous on January 28, 2017 at 10:29 am

      Trumputin doesn’t realize that the USA is a complex bureaucracy, his orders go through processes, their impacts are far reaching and the impact is long-term. The chaos of last weeks executive orders is just beginning, the bureaucratic avalanche will be in full effect Monday. You can’t run the USA with 25 people and a pen. This is going to be a rocky road. Humility will be witnessed by everyone, when his actions backfire.

      Reply

      • On a gut-comfort scale of 1 to 10, mine just says “rumble, cannot compute, past statements not guarantee of future performance”…we’ll find out soon enough whether he’s crazy or crazy like fox

        Reply

  7. Posted by MJ on January 28, 2017 at 8:23 am

    Not for anything but the talk of pensions imploding, defaulting, going belly up, bankruptcy, etc…so far nothing has happened and as far as I know the checks are still coming. Just sayin……..

    Reply

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