How Do I Tax Thee

Subtitled “A field guide to the Great American Rip-Off” by Kristin Tate the book serves as a primer on various ways governments raise money for their own benefit with several examples hitting home.

No matter which party is in control, or who’s writing the federal, state, and city budgets – governments at every level continue to operate with minimal transparency and abysmal transparency. (page 4)

General funds consist of any revenues collected by the state or city that are not dedicated by law to a specific purpose, creating massive slush funds for bureaucrats to spend however they please. (page 11)

The problem, after all, is ultimately not with [public employees] who were making money for their families within the boundaries of the rules. God bless them for that at least. The problem is management and city oversight that is so inefficient, and so apparently ambivalent about tax-paying citizens, it regularly allows employees to make three times their base salary and deflects the cost of their mismanagement to you. (pages 13-4)

Oil companies make about 7 cents profit on every gallon of gas they sell us. But the government takes more than 48 cents per gallon. (page 22)

The states with the highest gas tax in the nation are Pennsylvania (58.2 cents per gallon), Washington (49.4 cents per gallon), and Hawaii (44.39 cents per gallon). (page 23)

Alabama is one of only three states (joining South Dakota and Mississippi) that fully tax groceries. (page 32)

I think it’s safe to say that any time an elected official tells you they’re doing something “for your own good,” if you’re not immediately suspicious, then you are most likely missing the subtext, big-time… (page 35)

that old chestnut of an excuse: to generate operating revenue – which usually means to line people’s pockets and fund pensions. (page 36)

We’re routinely forced to pay for regulations and subsidies that make it more costly for certain producers to do business; those costs are then passed down to us. But it’s unclear what we get in return for all this. (page 41)

Most of that organic fare you shovel down your quinoa holes does not come from your local organic urban farm. In fact, the vast majority of every organic product you eat is imported from Mexico, Eastern Europe, and South America. (page 42)

Sure, theoretically if you don’t like the policy you can work to vote out the city councilmen and mayors who put it in place, but who is watching government policy closely enough to track the never-ending stream of costs like these that are imposed on the average New Yorker? (page 47)

Section 8 of the National Housing Act allows the government to pay recipients’ rent in the apartments of the tenant’s choice…Here’s how it works: Once a family starts making more than a minimum earning threshold, they lose much or all of their Section 8 subsidies – same goes if they marry a spouse that makes “too much” money. In New York City, this perversely incentivizes recipients to remain indigent so they can continue receiving benefits. (page 49)

Despite more than a decade of federal and state subsidies, renewable energy still can’t provide enough power to justify the cost. Market and weather conditions make them uncompetitive, even with huge government subsidies (i.e., taxpayer money). (page 60)

what Nanny-State warriors like [former New York Mayor Michael] Bloomberg don’t seem to get: (a) Sin taxes rarely work, (b) they always hurt the poorest consumers the most, and, (c) the money these taxes generate never goes toward saving citizens from their own vices. Politicians use them as a way to con voters into giving up more money – and then, like magic, the money mysteriously disappears into the local government’s “general funds” coffer to be squandered away. (page 84)

Here us the poorest kept secret behind all of these new sin taxes: Most legislators don’t give a fig about anyone’s health. They will all pay it lip service, but they really just want an excuse to pilfer more dollars from your wallet. (page 91)

Until recently, the mating habits of Australian sea turtles got more attention than hidden cell phone taxes. (page 99)

Officials in [Chicago] realize that cell phone bills are an easy way to increase revenue, largely under the radar. Fees for 911 have been exploited continuously. In 2008, the city doubled its wireless 911 fee from $1.25 to $2.50 per month. Why? To help fund its Olympic bid (yes, really). You remember the Chicago Olympics, right? Oh, yeah – they lost that bid. Funny thing, though – that 911 tax never got reduced. In fact, it was increased a further 56% in 2014, causing Chicagoans’ phone bills to rise by $16.80 per phone line per year. So, a typical family plan with four lines saw an increase of $67.20 per year. The reason for the 2014 hike? To “save” pension funds for city workers (uh, what does that have to do with 911 service again?) The funds from the tax go straight into the Laborers’ Fund, and in its first year alone that increased 911 fee generated $110.8 million.    And now, three years later, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel is pushing yet another wireless tax hike as the city continues to struggle with its bloated employee pension funds. Emanuel had previously promised Governor Bruce Rauner that he would steer clear of property tax hikes – but he didn’t say anything about that 911 fee! The mayor’s proposal would be a 28.2% increase – from $3.90 a month to $5 for every phone line. The increase is expected to bring in an annual $27 million to help the city meet its financial “obligations.” (page 100)

Young people love to share so much that millions of us rely daily on sharing apps like Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, VRBO, Postmates, and Etsy….Cities and states around the nation are passing laws right now that hurt sharing apps, while protecting their corporate constituents (like the hotel and taxi industries. (page 121)

Speeding tickets are big business – nationwide, drivers receive over 100,000 tickets per day and provide over $6 billion annually to municipalities across the country. The revenue from these fines goes to a variety of sources, including administrative offices and city pensions. In New Jersey, for example, part of your ticket is supposed to go to the police “Body Armor Replacement Fund” – but in 2016, politicians diverted $400,000 for an unrelated call center for the state’s Department of Human Services. In Missouri, a $3 surcharge goes directly to the pensions of 125 former sheriffs. They’re a politically addictive form of revenue – and used as a cudgel against drivers. (page 145)

Depending on where you live, you may face special taxation on activities surrounding regular animal care. new Jersey requires vets to charge sales tax for many services (page 157)

The problem is not that the people are taxed too little. The problem is that the government spends too much. Ronald Reagan (page 161)

On average, city, state, and federal regulations on building account for 24% of the cost of a home!Excessive rules, typically put in place under the guise of promoting safety, make it harder for the average American family to afford a home. (page 162)

When the IRS isn’t caving in to Scientology, they’re not all bad! Just mostly bad. (page 169)

The federal government made a $41.3 billion profit from student loan interest in 2013 alone; that’s a higher profit than all but two companies in the entire world, Exxon and Apple. It’s quite a sweet little racket they have. The government issues the loans, backs those loans, sets the student loan interest rates, and collects all the profits. Even better, unlike bank mortgages or consumer loans like credit card debt, the government does not forgive your loans even if you’re desperate and file bankruptcy. Al Capone and John Gotti never had such a sweet deal. (page 184)

Is it really such a crisis – or is it just an ever-growing, expensive bureaucracy? (page 191)

Unions would love to see all charter schools disappear, because these schools aren’t run by the unions – and therefore are not a revenue source for unions dues. (page 193)

Running away from the system is just another way of giving the system your permission to endure. (page 225)

What’s more, federal, state, and local governments are spending our money on whatever they please, including bloated and above-market salaries for themselves and their underlings, with surprisingly little accountability for mismanagement, systemic inefficiencies, and downright bad decisions. Our collective inability to recognize and push back against these practices has allowed elected – and unelected – public officials alike to get away with these schemes for decades. (page 227)

In New Jersey, former governor Chris Christie diverted more than $1 billion from ratepayer subsidies on customer utility bill charges. That money was ostensibly supposed to go toward clean energy programs, but it went straight into the general fund. He also took hundreds of millions of dollars from fee-supported environmental programs, diverted toll revenue from transportation projects, and tried to grab more than $160 million in affordable housing funds. A real gem, that guy. (page 233)

In the end, the solution that prevailed was the one championed by the people who were most passionate and – more than anything – present. People say 90% of success is just showing up. When you pay your next subway tax on a cable bill, consider asking yourself: Who showed up for the meeting that decided that tax?

40 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Tough Love on June 10, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    This one caught my eye (there being only slightly more than ZERO “accountability” anywhere in Gov’t)……………….

    “The problem is management and city oversight that is so inefficient, and so apparently ambivalent about tax-paying citizens, it regularly allows employees to make three times their base salary and deflects the cost of their mismanagement to you. (pages 13-4)”

    Reply

  2. Posted by geo8rge on June 10, 2018 at 7:01 pm

    Cost of government rises when local newspaper closes, study finds

    A study inspired by a John Oliver segment has analysed data from 1,266 US counties and tallied the cost of losing a print watchdog

    https://www.theguardian.com/media/2018/jun/10/cost-of-government-rises-when-local-newspaper-closes-study-finds

    Reply

  3. Posted by rdquinn on June 11, 2018 at 6:38 am

    The problem is citizens who want all the stuff promised and re-elect all those who promise it. Government is not an entity of itself, it’s people.

    Reply

    • Posted by geo8rge on June 11, 2018 at 3:36 pm

      ” citizens who want all the stuff promised and re-elect all those who promise it”

      The huge run up in pensions and government spending seems to have coincided with the rise of The Internet. The internet put self-financing newspapers out of business. It is not really that citizens voted for stuff, but there was no source of information about it and the way the pension and other schemes worked there was no immediate increase in taxes. The NJ gas tax increase is financing unfunded pension promises made more than a decade ago.

      Reply

      • Posted by skip3house on June 11, 2018 at 4:38 pm

        Depressing fact….. special interest voters ‘rob’ non voters/unorganized voters. Certainly shows SCOTUS result of $$$ being free speech.

        Reply

    • Posted by Stanley on June 12, 2018 at 10:30 am

      The problem might be politicians buying votes with promises and payoffs and thinking that they can play god and fix everything including the weather.

      Reply

  4. Posted by skip3house on June 11, 2018 at 9:51 am

    Practical sense .. Why will most need not care? And, ‘found $$’ for that small % who inherit from …….. just use flexible liens if property/business is not wished to be sold…

    Reply

  5. Posted by Stanley on June 11, 2018 at 11:06 am

    “Running away from the system is just another way of giving the system your permission to endure.”
    Maybe so, but staying there and letting gaupo uno tax away your savings and home equity doesn’t make much sense. $125 per for sitting on his behind and watching traffic go by!
    South Dakota taxes groceries and not much else. Many retirees make SD home base.

    Reply

  6. Posted by Stephen Douglas on June 11, 2018 at 11:54 am

    “States commended as “low tax” are often high tax states for low- and middle-income families. The 10 states with the highest taxes on the poor are Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, and Washington. Seven of these are also among the “terrible ten” because they are not only high tax for the poorest, but low tax for the wealthiest.”

    (South Dakota is listed as one of the “Terrible Ten” regressive states (number 4) for having very high taxes on the poor, and very low taxes on the rich.)

    https://itep.org/wp-content/uploads/WP5AppendixA.pdf
    —————————-
    LOL!!!

    “$125 per for sitting on his behind and watching traffic go by!”

    Was pure, unadulterated, grade A bullshit from the word “go”, and you fell for it!

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 12:03 pm

      El gaupo gave details that showed that it’s $100/hr. in his town.

      In my town a Councilman told me it’s $125/hr (with a 4 hr minimum).

      Reply

      • Posted by PS Drone on June 11, 2018 at 1:58 pm

        Seems to me the town bills the utility $125 (or $100) per hour. It does not pay the life risking officer $125 per hour. Based on $135,000 per annum and 2000 straight time hours, the very experienced life risker would be paid $67.50 per hour. If magnaminously performing the life saving service on OT, our hero would be paid $101.25 (unless his union demands double time for OT). Heaven forbid the “service” is performed on a Holiday.

        Reply

        • “Based on $135,000 per annum”

          Which is well above the average salary for New Jersey police officers*. Also well above the median salary,

          *”As a whole”, as TL says, and that’s what counts, don’t you know?

          Reply

          • Posted by El gaupo on June 11, 2018 at 4:15 pm

            Glad to see I’m so popular today.
            Stanley, almost NO ONE from NJ retires to South Dakota. lol. I’ve never even heard any one I know say they wanna retire there. Many other places, yes. Of course. Maybe you can start your own volunteer security force there?
            TL is right. (Oh my God, my heart didn’t stop). We earn (yea yea I know) our ot rate for these details. Some towns do a flat rate. So yes, it is north of $100 on salary alone for older guys like myself. And with fees to the utility that the town keeps to lower your taxes, it is another $35 or so an hour (I know the taxes don’t go down, but it sure would be nice if they did). And there is a four hour minimum on jobs that are cancelled less than 60 min before or just in general. And if you are upset by police at these sites, you should see you utility workers in action. I shit you not, one time I arrived on a road job at 8. An unnamed public utility truck rolled up at 10. Sat for an hour. A man got out of a truck put a hard hat on. Looked up at the pole for 3 min. Came over to my car and said go get lunch see you at 1. Came back sat till 130 and got paid to 4.
            PS drone, no double time, no holiday pay. Just regular overtime. Seems that you have a problem with the profession in general not just the money. That’s ok. I’ve learned long ago that many folks just don’t like authority. It must make you feel better to sarcastically call me a life risking officer. That’s fine. I would like but certainly don’t need to be everybody’s friend. However, I do do my best and even TL would probably admit that she wouldn’t hate having me work in her town.
            Stephen Douglas— I feel you man and we are on the same side but (barf) TL is right again. I think you don’t realize how expensive it really is to live in north jersey. The salaries are high but the standard of living is middle class on our salaries. Most ranking officers in Bergen are in the $140,000 and up range. Even TL doesn’t have a big problem with the salaries. Just the pension and bennies.
            I hope a got everybody 😋

          • Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 7:01 pm

            Thanks El gaupo ……………. Stephen Douglas needed to be identified as the very high Public Sector compensation “denier” that he is, and spends SOOOOO many hours denying.

          • Posted by Stephen Douglas on June 11, 2018 at 8:33 pm

            Thanks for what?

            “I feel you man and we are on the same side but (barf) TL is right again.”?

            I get it that North New Jersey has very high police salaries. And high cost of living. For twenty five years, I worked the Peninsula, San Francisco to San Jose, and I lived right smack in the middle. Check out police (and fire) salaries there. And if you’re a glutton for punishment, check out those pensions!

            For the moment, I’m talking the $125/hr. bullshit. First time I read that, I let it pass. Typical TL BS. But he just kept repeating it. It doesn’t pass Sagan’s law… “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”

            There is not now, nor ever was, any such evidence. Call up your councilman and ask for that data. You have a right to know. TL repeated that crap as if it were typical, and now he has others repeating it also.

            Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 5:08 pm

            So are you ALSO calling Police Officer El gaupo a liar over his admitted $100/hr ?

            No, TL, repeat after me…

            $125/hour is pure bullshit.
            $100/hour is an outlier, perhaps typical in Northern NJ (emphasis on “perhaps”)
            Statewide, average pay for roadwork monitoring is probably closer to $60-80/hr. on OT.

            ——————-
            TL…
            “Stephen Douglas needed to be identified as the very high Public Sector compensation “denier” that he is,…”

            Stephen Douglas says the same thing he has always said about Public Sector compensation…

            Less educated public workers earn more than their private sector equivalents, primarily because of their comparatively higher pensions and benefits.

            Higher educated, and professional public workers earn significantly less than their private sector counterparts, the higher pensions and benefits are not sufficient to compensate for the much lower salaries.

            Between these two extremes are a large number of public workers who are”roughly equal”. Their lower salaries are more or less balanced by the higher pensions.

            Not greedy. Not moochers. Not a cancer.

            Where do police officers fit in that continuum? Beats me. Gaupo, if you think TL doesn’t have a big problem with the salaries. Just the pension and bennies… I think you better think again.

            https://www.njtvonline.org/news/video/whats-right-amount-pay-new-jersey-police-officers/

          • Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 10:24 pm

            Quoting Stephen Douglas ………………

            “Where do police officers fit in that continuum? Beats me. Gaupo, if you think TL doesn’t have a big problem with the salaries. Just the pension and bennies… I think you better think again.”

            Actually, I don’t have a big problem with Police salaries since they’ve been adjusted over the more recent contracts to have a much longer grade-in to full scale ……… now about $135K after 10 years vs about 5 years in past contracts.

            But YES, NJ Police pensions and benefits are off-the-wall too generous ………. about 4 TIMES* greater in value upon retirement that those typically granted Private Sector workers in jobs requiring comparable experience, education, skills and knowledge, and who retire at the SAME age, with the SAME wages, and the SAME years of service.

            * 4 Times with no COLA reinstatement (EVER). If COLAs are reinstated, the 4 Times goes up to between 5 and 6 Times.

    • Posted by Stanley on June 11, 2018 at 7:57 pm

      Douglas: “States commended as “low tax” are often high tax states for low- and middle-income…”
      Do you think that people in CA have it good? I would argue that poor people in the Bay area don’t have it good at all. Likely, they live in cars, back of trucks (with a topper, hopefully) broken down rv’s dry camping in some Walmart parking lot. In the Central Valley it has to be worse. Paying an electric bill for air conditioning has to be a killer and I doubt if it’s uncommon for four of five families to crowd together in one house or apt. Venezuela has the sort of polices that you approve of. Are you following news reports of life in Venezuela? Chavez and Maduro did the number on the folks who put them in office. Do poor people in SD, TX, WA or FL have it better?

      Reply

      • Posted by El gaupo on June 11, 2018 at 8:33 pm

        I think poor people in every state have it rough. And I will go out on a limb and say that everyone on this blog, myself included, is fortunate enough to not be in that boat. I think a more accurate number would be the rate of people in poverty in high tax vs low tax states. Or perhaps the mean salary in any given states. NJ is certainly not exempt from poverty. I think what Happens sometimes is folks move to a cheaper place to live BEFORE they become poor if they can. This involves moving to another state for folks in NJ. As most of our poor people live in urban areas and nearby older suburbs. If you look at almost every metric in terms of education, lowest teen birth rate, mean income, etc. except for Texas almost every state at the top of the list is in fact a high tax state.

        Reply

        • Posted by Stanley on June 12, 2018 at 2:37 am

          Income stats can be very misleading. I have known executives with a very heavy debt load and people with more modest incomes that have very strong finances. The $76K in Marin County would be tough if they didn’t have a wife with a good job or a home owned for a long time. I have heard that $200K doesn’t go far in NYC. I would imagine that your rookie policemen earning $40K are having a very tough go of it if they don’t get a lot of shovel leaning time. Budgeting and spending patterns are probably at least as important as income in determining well being. Many people don’t grow out of childish spending habits.

          Reply

          • Posted by El gaupo on June 12, 2018 at 8:53 am

            Yes. You are right about young policeman now. I brought my house when I had 3 years in the job. Paid $260K for a 3 bedroom split level on a side street in northern Bergen town. Same split now(with a addition on) is $625 20 years later. No way could I have afforded that on what I made then. Even harder for these guys. I was 6.5 years to top pay. Now we are 15 years. We have guys on 4 years making under $50,000. No way they affording a house in the area. They live further out where it is cheaper or with the parents still.
            They all feel it. These kids will be OK but will never have the standard of living that the older guys have. Between low raises and health care costs and Long step scales I am confident that Few will be complaining about police salaries in 25 years. I guess you can say the same about a lot of jobs these days.
            Our town no longer offers medical after retirement to new hires effective the first of 2018. That alone will add years to guys career. Especially if they don’t have coverage through their spouse or waiting years (which they all have) to start a family.
            So, yea when you see a gray hair like me(figuratively, I am the handsome one after all) on these road jobs you can shake your head. I get that. I really do. But when you see some young kids out there, he really isn’t killing it at work in terms of his salary and could probably use the extra dough.

          • Posted by Tough Love on June 12, 2018 at 9:38 am

            Quoting El gaupo ………………

            ” Between low raises and health care costs and Long step scales I am confident that Few will be complaining about police salaries in 25 years.”

            The operative in that quote is “salaries”. Your PENSIONS & BENEFITS remain LUDICROUSLY excessive by any and every reasonable metric.

          • Posted by Stanley on June 12, 2018 at 10:41 am

            ” These kids will be OK but will never have the standard of living that the older guys have.”
            My crystal ball is a little cloudy, but. After the 1970s, I thought that I was into a pretty difficult life with little chance of making financial progress. It turned out a lot better than I thought it would. Going forward, the next decade might be a bit troublesome (very difficult for some), but it might get a lot better. There have been ways to make some very good money in recent years. In the oil patch, the soldiers who made a number of trips to Iraq and/or Afgan. Unfortunately, many spent it as fast or faster than they earned it. Many young people are on to bit coins which might turn out to be a good but expensive lesson.

          • Posted by El gaupo on June 12, 2018 at 11:59 am

            TL, in terms of younger officers, they will not have any post retirement benifit, will still pay 35% of a family plan in most cases(I’m paying $11,859 this year, I am fortunate when I retire I won’t be, and believe me I realize it) once they do pass over $110,000 a year. Without the post retirement benifits, if they have kids in high school still at 30 years they will stay. And with tier 2 and 3 people having pensions being capped at SS rate, if they eligible time wise(2010 and later so they are not) they will cap at $83, 000 with no SS, and no medical. Still good but nothing to get all worked over anymore.
            Stanley, on the contrart, most of the younger officers I work with are far more money conscious than most (not me) of my cohort. Many fear that the pension will be cut or not there at all for them. They are much better at saving. Beleive it or not, most do not want to live in mommy’s basement. Lol.
            I have two in high school. I am trying to teach them the right way to save etc.
            You are right when you say it makes all the difference. I see plenty of million dollar homes in the town where I work (not live, lol) and they are empty or owners are in debt. Not because they lost their jobs but because they bit off more than they can chew and it bit the. In the ass.

          • Posted by Tough Love on June 12, 2018 at 5:04 pm

            Quoting El gaupo …………..

            “TL, in terms of younger officers, they will not have any post retirement benifit, will still pay 35% of a family plan in most cases(I’m paying $11,859 this year, I am fortunate when I retire I won’t be, and believe me I realize it) once they do pass over $110,000 a year. Without the post retirement benifits, if they have kids in high school still at 30 years they will stay. And with tier 2 and 3 people having pensions being capped at SS rate, if they eligible time wise(2010 and later so they are not) they will cap at $83, 000 with no SS, and no medical. Still good but nothing to get all worked over anymore.”

            Lets take those sentences one at a time:

            (1) “TL, in terms of younger officers, they will not have any post retirement benifit, will still pay 35% of a family plan in most cases(I’m paying $11,859 this year, I am fortunate when I retire I won’t be, and believe me I realize it) once they do pass over $110,000 a year. ”

            Oh so you mean the new officers won’t have any employer-sponsored post retirement healthcare benefits ………….. just like 99+% of all current PRIVATE Sector workers ? That’s called “fair”.

            Your family plan premium of $11,859 being 35% of the Plan’s total cost, means that the total annual cost is $11,859/0.35 = $33,883. That is BECAUSE you (unlike Private Sector workers) get “Platinum+” coverage. Family Coverage in large Corporate Private Sector Plans typically has a Total Cost of $20K to $25K, NOT $33.8K because it’s a LOT less generous.

            And whats NOT relevant is what YOU pay, but what the Taxpayer share is. For you Plan the taxpayer share is 65% x$33,883 = $22,024……. which in many cases is the TOTAL cost of a Private Sector Plan. And with the employee share of total Private Sector Family Plan coverage typically being about 30% of the Plan’s total cost, the Private Sector Plan’s Employer cost is about (using the average in my above range) 70% x $22,500 = $15,750.

            So WHY, should YOU get a Taxpayer subsidy of $22,024 when the comparable Private Sector Employee (working at a large Corporate employer) only get $15,750? Just ANOTHER example of how Taxpayers are ripped off.

            And Quoting …………. “I am fortunate when I retire I won’t be” (paying any healthcare premium that is). So YOU will be getting a taxpayer subsidy of $33,883K (increasing annually, no doubt) and the Private Sector employee typically gets NOTHING in subsidized retiree healthcare benefits today. ANOTHER Taxpayer ripoff.
            —————————-
            (2) Quoting …………….

            “Without the post retirement benefits, if they have kids in high school still at 30 years they will stay.”.

            GOOD, a full career in the Private Sector is rarely less than 35 years and often longer.
            ———————————–

            (3) Quoting ………………

            “And with tier 2 and 3 people having pensions being capped at SS rate, if they eligible time wise(2010 and later so they are not) they will cap at $83, 000 with no SS, and no medical. Still good but nothing to get all worked over anymore.””

            No, not just “good”, but still MUCH BETTER than what comparably educated, experienced, skilled, and knowledgeable Private Sector workers typically get. An $83K annual pension is a rare bird indeed in a Private Sector DB Plan.

          • Posted by El gaupo on June 12, 2018 at 8:42 pm

            The state health benifits plan (think Norcross and his cronies) gives us no choice in plans. It is either that are these bare bones HD plans that have $8000 family deductibles. No thanks on that. When my daughter was 3, I had to take her into Columbia Presbyterian for a procedure. I sure as hell didn’t want to be limited to the bullshit that Sweeney offered in 2011. Which was you have to go to a doctor in NJ. Done simply to keep state workers in Norcross territory from going into philly. That’s not fair at all, but that is the backroom deals that happen all the time in politics.
            And I stand by my statement that you have much much less to bitch about with new officers today. $83000 with no SS is equal to about $50000 with SS. Good but not the better deal than us gen Xers have. This crop of officers will have the same outlook as the ones in he fifties had. But back the. It was the salaries that sucked and great benifits were common.

          • Posted by Tough Love on June 12, 2018 at 8:56 pm

            Quoting Elgaupo ……………

            “And I stand by my statement that you have much much less to bitch about with new officers today. $83000 with no SS is equal to about $50000 with SS. ”

            No it’s not because YOU don’t “contribute to” SS.

  7. “a Councilman told me”

    You crack me up.

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 5:08 pm

      So are you ALSO calling Police Officer El gaupo a liar over his admitted $100/hr ?

      Or ………… is it that your just a retired CA Public Sector “moocher” doing your “thing” .,…… disparaging ANYTHING that is evidence of the ludicrous compensation granted Public Sector workers (and especially Police) ?

      Reply

    • Posted by Stephen Douglas on June 11, 2018 at 5:50 pm

      “I don’t know why his town pays $100/hour (also with a 4 hour minimum per his comment below time-stamped May 20, 2018 at 3:21 pm) but it’s not that far off the $125 that I was told that my town pays,…”

      Again, as El Gaupo asked several times, I don’t know what kind of “financial” business you’re in where $100/hour is “not that far off the $125” (that I was “told” that my town pays,…”)

      Tis true, the difference between $100 and $125 doesn’t seem like much. I’ve left tips bigger than $25 (not very often), but when you throw in the TL internet math…

      “At $125/hour for YOUR time, with 150 hours, that’s 150x$125=$18,750 unnecessary factored into our Utility rates just for you, and if all 17 Officers chalk-up the same hours it’s 17x $18,750=$318,750.”

      Yeah, that’s way off, even for Bergen County.

      To recap…
      $125/hour is pure bullshit.
      $100/hour is an outlier, perhaps typical in Northern NJ (emphasis on “perhaps”)
      Statewide, average pay for roadwork monitoring is probably closer to $60-80/hr. on OT.

      AND…

      It’s probably a lot more cost effective than you imply.

      “Did that Councilman BS me ?

      I have no reason to believe so.”

      I do have reason to believe so.

      Reply

      • Posted by Tough Love on June 11, 2018 at 7:12 pm

        Stephen Douglas,

        You’re just digging the dunce-hole that you have been wallowing in even deeper.

        Reply

        • Posted by El gaupo on June 11, 2018 at 7:36 pm

          I disagree with TL on most stuff. Actually, I agree with her more than I would like to dare admit. But she is right factually on this one. Junior officers will make much less than me, as I did years ago. It is what it is. Some years you may get lots of these and some years you only get a few. That’s how it works.

          Reply

          • Posted by El gaupo on June 11, 2018 at 8:01 pm

            The $315,000 is in fact way off. I am at the top of our pay scale after 23 years of service. 3/4 don’t make as much…so yes that number is bullshit. Never said every single officer made what I made.

        • Posted by Stephen Douglas on June 11, 2018 at 8:47 pm

          Easy enough to verify. Get that councilman out here and…

          Reply

  8. Posted by PS Drone on June 11, 2018 at 2:01 pm

    This post just further cements the sad fact that all politicians are liars all the time. And the longer they serve the bigger and more frequent the lies. Term limits NOW.

    Reply

    • Posted by El gaupo on June 11, 2018 at 4:22 pm

      While I wouldn’t say all politicians lie all
      Of the time, I would say that some politicians lie all the time, and all politicians lie some of the time.

      Reply

  9. “The problem is not that our generations are taxed too little. The problem is that the government plans to spends too much on the generations to follow, almost as much as we spent on ourselves!”

    The generations that voted for Ronald Reagan

    Reply

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