pensions

Busted and Bankrupt Detroit Can Now Wipe Out Worker Pensions

It is official.  Detroit is bankrupt.  Detroit is not only bankrupt they can now trash pensions owed to city workers.  That is police, fire, hospital and a host of workers counting on those pensions for retirement.  The U.S court ruling allows for a bankruptcy type for cities and towns, Chapter 9, to proceed and specifically puts pensions on the fair game bankruptcy chopping block.

There Goes Detroit!

Detroit just filed for bankruptcy.  This is the largest city bankruptcy in U.S. history and much of it has to do with the banks.

Legions have fled Detroit over the last decade.

Detroit lost a quarter-million residents between 2000 and 2010. A population that in the 1950s reached 1.8 million is struggling to stay above 700,000. Much of the middle-class and scores of businesses also have fled Detroit, taking their tax dollars with them.

Twinkies, Pensions, Real Wages and Poverty

wonder breadThe loss of the Hostess Twinkie is a symbol of a new era for the American worker. Chemical cupcakes usher in the race to the economic bottom, where the new business operandi is the stripping of worker wages and benefits. Gone are middle class incomes and lifestyles for most. Here are temporary jobs, no benefits and assuredly no retirement. America has been sliced, and diced, just like Wonder Bread.

The Romney Ad, the Auto Bail Out and China

The political everybody has an opinion not based in fact pundit world is ablaze over a new Romney ad claiming Chrysler is planning on building a plant in China and making Jeeps there. The ad references this Bloomberg article, from October 22nd, which reports Fiat, the majority shareholder in Chrysler, wants to move some production to China.

 

"Pensions' Private Equity Cash Reduced 59%"

Naked Capitalism through Guest Posts by Leo Kolivakis, publisher of Pension Pulse, has done an excellent job of chronicling the problems with pension funds. I certainly encourage people to read his posts.

The headline is from a Bloomberg "exclusive" story. This is the lead in paragraph:

U.S. pension funds contributed to the record $1.2 trillion that private-equity firms raised this decade. Three of the biggest investors, state pensions in California, Oregon and Washington, plunked down at least $53.8 billion. So far, they only have dwindling paper profits and a lot less cash to show the millions of policemen, teachers and other civil servants in their retirement plans.

Friday Movie Night

hot buttered popcorn

It's Friday Night!

Time to relax, put your feet up on the couch, lay back, and watch some detailed videos on economic policy!

First, let me introduce Warren Gunnels, Senior Policy adviser to Senator Bernie Sanders. This is a guy working hard behind the scenes. He overviews some legislation battles against powerful multinational corporations. Bernie Sanders is one of the best Senators working for the U.S. middle class (you know, those constituents). He mentions the H-1B battle and IBM trying to deny pensions.