Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

NJ Gubernatorial Debate on Pensions

The main takeaway:
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My question:
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Why Is Tom Moran Flacking For the Sweeney-Norcross Machine (and another question)

The New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) wants to know and I have a guess.

Tom Moran works for the largest recipient of legal-ad money in the state and State Senate president Stephen Sweeney is in a position to fend off any attempt to rein in this subsidy for newspapers who play the game. The NJEA is looking to punish Sweeney for not doing enough for their bribe money and Moran is defending Sweeney by attacking this ‘lying union’ and the $1.2 million in compensation their head gets.

But there is another question here.

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What NJEA Bought

On Thursday I witnessed seven of eight Union County politicians, against the will of the majority and common sense, repaying their campaign donors.

Today nj.com focused on the cautionary tale of New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney who crossed the teachers’ union and has wound up fighting against their money. In his defense (and including an astounding admission):

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Shutdown Chip

New Jersey has stopped providing nonessential services (which actually sounds like an admirable policy goal) with some of us adjusting better than others:
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The bottom line is that Governor Christie insists on seeing two bills (both of which passed the Senate on Thursday) before acting on the FY18 budget bill:

  1. S3312 the pension/lottery gimmick – passed the Senate (36-2)
  2. S4  the Horizon shakedown – passed the Senate (21-15)

S3312 is a sham reform that should do nothing more than convince the uninitiated that the state is as bankrupt of ideas as integrity when dealing with the worst funded pension system in the country. Both sides would gladly toss that chip in to get their way on S4 and here’s why:

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Shakedown: The Fleecing of the Garden State

Carl J. Mayer profiled mostly legalized corruption twenty years ago on Sixty Minutes:
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This segment yielded a book that, sadly, remains timely. Excerpts follow:

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Pension Byrne

I submitted a letter to the Star Ledger which is what led me to pick up today’s paper (since letters are no longer online at nj.com). I did not find my letter* but there was a letter from Thomas J. Healey, co-chair with Tom Byrne of the  Pension and Health Benefits Commission that objected to an op-ed written by Charles Wowkanech blaming the chairman of the State Investment Council (also Tom Byrne) for the public  pension funding crisis.

There were conflicting numbers about how New Jersey fared with their investment returns as compared to other unidentified plans over varying periods but what struck me was an accusation of Wowkanech’s that I disagree with:

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Buying NJ Governorship

I just received the following wire from my generous Daddy; Dear Jack, Don’t buy a single vote more than is necessary. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for a landslide.

John F. Kennedy

Next Tuesday in New Jersey we will have a primary election for governor and based on information on the updated New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission website here is how much each candidate (and two from prior years) spent personally on all elections in total (buying support) and this primary election to date.
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