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Anti-Charter School Labor Union Controlling San Diego County Board of Education

How does the San Diego County Board of Education become dubiously entangled with the owner of a solar company and a labor union boss?

It’s For The Children… Yeah, right.

In 2012 and 2014, the American Federation of Teachers labor union local 1091, led by union boss Jim Mahler, financed the take-down of community based San Diego County Board of Education board members, and installed his own labor union members.

In 2014, an independent board member, Doug Perkins, beat the union candidate, Rick Shea, but Perkins fell ill and resigned. The union-dominated board jumped on the opportunity and appointed Shea, giving the labor union 100 percent control of the board.

However, in the 2016 June primary, pro-reform candidates supported by the Charter Schools Association, won two seats. The third and deciding vote on the five-member board will be determined in a run-off between pro-reform candidate, former State Senator Mark Wyland, and labor union supported and appointed,… Read More

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The Unsustainability Lobby

“The creation of the mortgage bond market, a decade earlier, had extended Wall Street into a place it had never before been: the debts of ordinary Americans.” – Jared Vennett (played by Ryan Gosling), The Big Short (2015)

Along with anothersuperblyauthentic movie Margin Call(2011), The Big Shortprovides a vivid look into the rigged, Darwinian, ruthlessly exploitative circus popularly known as “Wall Street.” For decades, ever since the greatdepression, this industry slumbered along, sedatelyproviding financial services to Americans. As always, it alsowas a venue for legalized gambling, but the number of players were limited, the winnings were relatively meager, and the opportunities for corrupt manipulations had not yet been multiplied by new trading technologies. Back then, the seedier aspects of Wall Street were overshadowed by the many vitalservices the industry provided. All of that changed starting around 1980.

In 1985, the financial sector earned less than 16% of… Read More

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Public Pension Solvency Requires Asset Bubbles

The title of this post expresses what is probably the greatest example of a monstrous hypocrisy – that public employee unions, and the pension funds they control, are supposedly helping the American economy, and protecting the American people from “the bankers.” Overpriced “bubble” assets caused by banks offering low interest rates hurt ordinary working people in two ways – they cannot afford to buy homes, and they are denied any sort of viable low risk investment opportunity. But without an endlessly appreciating asset bubble,every public employee pension fund in the United States would go broke.

The inspiration for this post is a guest column published on April 27th in the Huffington Post entitled “The Real Retirement Crisis,” authored byRandi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers. The totality of Weingarten’s column, a depressing plethora of misleading statistics and questionable assertions, compels a response:

Weingarten writes:“America has a retirement crisis, but it’s not what some people want you toRead More

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Government Unions Attack Free-Market Nonprofits via Pension Funds

“The AFT [American Federation of Teachers] will be looking more closely at those who are supporting the dismantling of defined benefit plans at the state and municipal level.” Ranking Asset Managers, A Retirement Security Report on Money Managers for Pension Fund Trustees, March 5, 2014

As reported in aWashington Examiner editorialon April 4th, the American Federation of Teachers – that’s “teachers union” in plain English – has circulated a pamphlet that:

“Calls on pension fund trustees to drop any investment managers that are tainted by connection to free-market nonprofits. They also want those same trustees to force any potential new managers to have to disclose any donations they may have made to the groups on AFT’s blacklist.”

That the AFT can circulate a document like this without generating an uproar in the media reflects a monstrous and tragic double-standard. Money supporting… Read More