Friday, December 12, 2008

Outrage

What a week! Here's a rogues gallery of the country's most destructive individuals. Try and guess which number goes with each picture:

1. Lied about his fund's performance, costing his clients billions
2. Lied about his state's revenue potential, spending it to the brink of ruin
3. Ignored years of warnings on economic crimes, costing taxpayers billions
4. Took corruption to the level of cartoon villainy
5. Stole hundreds of millions of dollars from hedge funds, some run by teacher pension plans

For some well-written perspective, I recommend this piece by Keven Depew.





3 comments :

Anonymous said...

Sorry, hardware took a day off in the PC Spa.

Who's the drunk in the middle?

Regarding the last set of comments, DJ, nice to see your language skills improvn'

DT, Max, nice observations.

From inside the public side, I know to some "state employees" is a different entity than "school districts" and "fire districts" etc., etc. just as former mayor Fargo thinks the mall is 3 little blocks downtown.

Out here in "the land from where the tax revenue originates" state, schools ( & UCs CSUs) fire, CAPERS etc are all one giant sucking black hole - all one entity . (and the mall goes from the convention center to old Sac - well, actually its in Roseville)

The welfare state of non workers, non productive workers, too early retirees takes down both cities and industries.

Aa friend, making 6 figures, just left a nice soft job like was described because she was tired of the stupidity and waste.


Sippn

Max said...

Who's the drunk in the middle?

He stole $380 mil from some wealthy clients, most of which is "unaccounted for." I'm sure there's a deposit box in Cypress or Abu Dhabi with that guys name on it. Interestingly, he was caught in Canada trying to sell fake securities to a teachers pension fund there under an assumed name. Thus, he was denied bail. :)

Out here in "the land from where the tax revenue originates" state, schools ( & UCs CSUs) fire, CAPERS etc are all one giant sucking black hole

True enough. People inside the bubble really can't fathom the depth of the ignorance of the general population when it comes to how the government actually works. Civics class teaches about cities, counties, states, and country. No mention of park districts, school districts, water districts, air districts, administrative boards etc. Many of which have their own "revenue streams" that target narrowly defined industries or "special users."

Over the decades the system has evolved in a way that removes most citizens from directly feeling the cost of government. Most people don't pay taxes, which is why they simultaneously vote for new spending and complain about service cuts elsewhere.

I've spent a lot of time every side of this issue, and I don't see an answer other than "reset button." Absent that, the state will keep spending until all the money is gone and all the credit is used up. Then, it's either some political bailout deal, or Chap 9.

Anonymous said...

"Over the decades the system has evolved in a way that removes most citizens from directly feeling the cost of government."

So, so TRUE! I wonder what the total spending of all government and related entities adds up to?

Here is another idea. Sell the DMV to a private contractor for a nice large sum of money. Have a fixed budget that resets every 5 years. The private owners would be able to find huge cost savings, thus making a profit for the equity owners, and the state would have a fixed cost, no headaches, and a pile of cash. Why couldn't this be done with other sectors as well?