-By Warner Todd Huston
Illinois is broke. So broke it can’t pay its bills. Yet on it goes stiffing its creditors and it’s making me wonder why I bother to pay my bills at all. If the state can get away with thumbing its nose at its bill collectors, why can’t I? Oh, yeah. I’m not a Democrat. Unlike them, I’m expected to pay my bills. I forgot for a moment there. Oh, and I’m not a union member, either.
According to the Times story Illinois owes its schools, rehab centers, and childcare obligations $5.01 billion. And there’s no payment in sight.
Then there is the state employees pension plan that is underfunded by 50 percent.
Also, as the state legislature left the Capitol last month for its summer break there was no budget settled upon.
Marginal state employees and contractors are being let go right and left… as far as I am concerned they should never have been hired in the first place, of course. Most of these positions are unnecessary welfare workers paid out of the now non-existent largess of the state treasury. Still, whether they were legitimate employees or not — and admittedly some are — there’s no money for them and they’ve been let go.
The state has become a basket case of political failure.
“We are a fiscal poster child for what not to do,” said Ralph Martire of the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability, a liberal-leaning policy group in Illinois. “We make California look as if it’s run by penurious accountants who sit in rooms trying to put together an honest budget all day.”
The Times story plays the pity party for a “community counseling center” of Chicago that can’t meet its payroll because of the state’s failure to supply the cash. But, these supposed counseling centers are exactly the sort of money wasting garbage I was talking about above. Meet the payroll? It shouldn’t exist at all. It is a boondoggle and always was. Chop it.
And “chop it” should be the order of the say. There are thousands of state workers that are doing useless and unnecessary jobs. There are hundreds of social programs that should never have been started in the first place. They should be eliminated with extreme prejudice.
But the biggest problem is the state pensions. Union thugs across the state have ginned up their undeserved benefits and payscale to unheard of proportions and they’ve finally gotten to the point where this luxurious remuneration is impossible to fund.
I hate to say it, but thousands of pensioners will be up a creek thanks to these union demands that pliant politicians acquiesced to on nearly a daily basis for decades.
Chop it. Chop it. Chop it. That should be the new government mantra.