Monday, June 11, 2012

Mitt Romney: Teachers, Firefighters, Police not Americans?

Image of Mr. Interesting from
Think Progress.
When President Obama said, "The private sector is doing fine. Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government," the other day, it didn't even raise my eyebrows, because I knew what he meant. Every sentient human who heard it knew what he meant too, but it became a major "gaffe" anyhow. Because the news is starved for scandal, I guess. But when Mitt Romney countered with, . . .He says we need more firemen, more policemen, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.”

Why wasn't this considered a gaffe? First, you have his sort of anachronistically sexist "firemen" instead of "firefighters." But forget that, exactly when did cops, firefighters and teachers become the enemy? I know that teachers are often punching bags for Rush Limbaugh and his imitators, but I thought our "first responders" were sacrosanct, particularly on the right. And then there's that last part. . ."and help the American people," as though none of these people are Americans? I find his whole response very odd, and certainly worse than the President's badly constructed sentence.


Romney Says America Doesn’t Need ‘More Firemen, More Policemen, More Teachers’

The last three years are the worst on record for public sector job loss, and the 700,000 government jobs that no longer exist remain a large drag on the American economy. . . 

Read more at: Think Progress


  1. I happen to think we there are too many career firefighters. It used to be that most firefighters were volunteers, but the Fed. government have made being a volunteer almost impossible. I used to be a volunteer firefighter many years ago and today, if I was not fat, dumb and old, I don't think I could devote the time needed to a volunteer. Aside from that, you cannot tell me that we don't have an excess of cops in Metro and firefighters in the CCFD and City of Las Vegas. Same with Henderson, as they could close 1 station and it would not harm Henderson.
    As far as teachers, and as a teacher myself, i think we have way too many administrators and too many regulations. In Nevada, if we got of profiency exams, it would reduce costs and allow teachers to teach subjects instead teaching to the test and it would allow for much more teaching instead of taking a copule of weeks off a year to administer the test.
    But testing is a huge business, so it is not going anywhere.
    So, I think Romney is right, if they cut the fat but not the meat.

  2. My step-dad was a "career" firefighter whose career was cut short by two incidents: falling into a rendering vat when attempting rescue, and having a burning building fall in on him. This was in the 1970s, and he still gets disability. He is also a staunch Republican, and hates unions. . .though he benefitted from one, so go figure!

    Not having been in a union myself, I do see a little of both sides on this one. One thing I've never figured out: Union benefits such as pensions are earned, right? They're part of you pay, it's just deferred. So, theoretically, that is BEING paid while you are working, and put into your pension account. If states are now raiding pension funds, isn't that just theft? I understand that Republicans blanch at high compensation packages, but how can they legally just take it? And if it isn't THERE to take, where did it go? It sounds to me like the state bungling the whole operation, and then taking it out on the employees. I'm not sure how that is a "conservative" position to take.

  3. Which Republicans are just taking it? In Democratic States like California, Illinois and New York, the dem's not only raided it, but then they made promises to employees that they could not possibly keep.
    In reality, it is going to be pensions that is going to bankrupt States and the Federal government. Doesn't matter which party is in charge. If the pensions go bankrupt, then what will th epensioners do, especially in Nevada.
    Don't know if you know this, but teachers in CCSD don't pay social security taxes, so they won't get social security if they have not worked another job where they paid Social Security. So, if the Nevada pension system goes belly up, there will be a lot of people hurting very badly.
    And to your dad, he is a hero, especially getting hurt the way he did. though, when you mention the rendering vat, it reminds me of the movie the first Naked Gun movie where one of the villians drowned in a rendering vat.

  4. Sorry, that was a sloppy sentence. I didn't mean that the Republicans were taking it, only that they're the ones freaking out about the compensation packages of union employees, and are the ones who've made hay about smashing unions. The "they" I was referring to is the figurative "they"--them what took it.

    Now, back to pensions bankrupting states and the federal government. I still want to know why? Where did the money go? Either somebody got it, or somebody didn't ever put it into a pension plan, like they were supposed to do. Are you saying that compensation plans were given to union members, but were never paid into? Is that legal? Shouldn't a whole bunch of people be going to jail? If the Ds or the Rs "raided it," why aren't THEY going to jail? And why is it that Governors like Walker could find multi-millions to give to corporations, if they're so broke? Just askin'. . .

  5. As far as Walker and Wisconsin, he never did it and in wisconsin, they never touched it.
    I think the problem is that the pensions are being underfunded and are relying on the stockmarket to keep it afloat.
    In Nevada, I believe they put in about 5% of our salary into the pension and when we retire, get 75% of our last 3 years averaged and we get it until we die and it is possible our spouses may also get the pension if we die first.
    But yeah, with the stock market tanking and not enough put in, the pension system is hurting all over the country and it will bankrupt the different government agencies. I think this will be the next big story.


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