Greece Today – USA Tomorrow Under Obama
May 17, 2010
By J.B. Williams
As Rasmussen reports – “New Jersey and California are just two of the states that are wrestling with high numbers of well-compensated unionized public employees as they try to reduce growing budget deficits. But a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that Americans are generally favorable toward these unions…”
Dow Jones Newswire reports – “Greek Police Clash With Protesters As March Turns Violent - police have fired tear gas and stun grenades as groups of angry youths rampaged through the city center smashing shop windows, overturning garbage bins, and setting fire to at least two businesses.”
The Greek protests are led by government employee labor unions. In the states, we know SEIU (Service Employees International Union) under the AFL-CIO. And as the New York Times reported back in January, most U.S. union members now work for the government.
“The clashes come as tens of thousands of protesters gathered to protest the government's recently announced austerity measures in one of the largest protests in recent years, and coinciding with a nationwide general strike that has paralyzed the country.”
Overtaxed and still over-spent, Greece’s public sector labor unions are revolting against government cutbacks. Obama and SEIU have the good ole USA poised to follow that utopian trail into national bankruptcy. In both countries, the majority of union employees now hold taxpayer funded government jobs, the only kind of jobs that government can create.
The labor union protests in the streets of bankrupt Greece are in opposition to forced cutbacks in government spending and related services, all necessary to securing additional bailout funds from the EU and IMF in excess of $100 billion to keep Greece from sinking into complete anarchy.
Protesters who have already bled the nation dry of resources in their endless demand for socialist government handouts, are angry over the fact that it is government jobs, protected by public employee labor unions and paid for by Greek taxpayers, that must be cut in order to stop the excessive deficit spending that left Greece the first of many nations to collapse under the weight of socialized economics.
California and New Jersey are the first to follow in the economic-suicide footsteps of Greece and if it weren’t for ongoing multiple federal bailouts of these two states, all at U.S. taxpayer expense, streets in the U.S. would look just like the streets of Athens.
To no surprise, states with the most labor union influence are first to belly up in America. So-called “right to work” states (aka, states where workers can reject labor unions) seem to be faring much better, even in the economic downturn.
Still, according to Rasmussen, 53% of U.S. citizens support labor unions for public employees, without connecting the dots between labor union demands for ever shrinking worker productivity and ever increasing pay and benefits, and the fact that the U.S. economy is only months behind Greece, Iceland and much of the EU, at best…
Labor unions have destroyed manufacturing in America. They made U.S. students the most under-educated lot on earth. Now they are driving the cost of government through the roof, just like in Greece and there is NO way for this to end well.
When labor unions demand ever-increasing wages and benefits for government employees, the taxpayer takes a direct hit every time. When the economy stumbles, and tax revenues shrink, the cost of government and welfare services in particular, become unsustainable.
Protesters in Greece are right about one thing - it is the lowest people in the economic pecking order which will get hurt the most when oversized government has no choice but to shrink in size and scope. Said another way, government dependents don’t know what to do when the public trough runs dry.
But they fail to make the connection between lack of productivity, increasing cost and shrinking resources. The end is inevitable for any government that tries to become all things to all people, while robbing the most productive members of society of their rightful earnings to keep it all afloat. In the end, no nation has access to a bottomless well of resources.
For the record, Greece was already one of the highest taxed nations on earth, with 33.5% of GDP burned up in taxes. The United States is not far behind with 28.2% of GDP swallowed up in taxes, while red ink still runs all over the page in unfunded promises as far as the eye can see, with more unfunded promises made daily.
Only a handful of communist/socialist nations have a higher tax rate than Greece, yet Greece was unable to sustain its government no matter how much money they robbed from their productive members of society.
Yet many Americans don’t seem to have the critical thinking skills to connect these dots and predict their own demise, even as other nations begin to collapse under the weight of excessive government and related taxation without real representation for taxpayers.
The free-lunch mentality of the “entitlement generation” in America is driving the United States right off the same cliff that Greece just fell off.
However, Americans, unlike any other people on earth, have an equal birthright NOT to big screen TV’s, fancy cars and homes they can’t afford, but to thrive, survive or fail of their own choosing. To live free, making their own life choices, be they good, bad or indifferent.
The effort to trade freedom for a free lunch will always fail in the end, no matter the momentary euphoria from a utopian campaign promise to destroy “the rich” in favor of “the poor.”
The United States was once the most prosperous and powerful nation on earth, largely because it was the only nation on earth that didn’t fall for the false promise of equal free stuff. But today, our “entitlement generation” has fallen for the lie and they won’t be set free until they are once again able to separate fact from fiction.
Bottom line… if we don’t do away with public sector labor unions, we cannot reel in our runaway government or the high cost of bailing out the unions while the nation goes under.
Just ask the folks in Greece!