Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

October 27, 2013

Public Eye

wage liberation

If Right to Work doesn’t seem like enough of a euphemism, then try out the latest catchphrase from the American Legislative Exchange Council, “Wage Liberation.”

The conservative group’s latest push is really pension reform, mainly in the form of privatizing and/or cutting private pensions.

The Indiana Public Retirement System has already acted to liberate some teachers from their pension funds, by voting to privatize an annuity option. Instead of a guaranteed 7.5 percent rate of return, the teachers choosing the annuity would receive market rate returns, which vary. Right now, the market rate is around 4 percent to 4.5 percent.

The big proponent of privatizing/cutting pensions is hedge fund billionaire John Arnold, who has teamed up with the Pew Charitable Trust to indict public pensions as a huge unfunded liability.

Critics say Arnold’s message, which has some truth to it, is severely undercut by the profit Arnold’s brethren on Wall Street stand to make if public pensions are privatized.

In Rhode Island, where significant pension reform has already been enacted, the state’s bill for financial management went from $11 million to $70 million, while the state pension funds’ rate of return failed to beat the Standard & Poor’s 500 index.

Then there are significant questions about how transparent the investments become, once they’re privatized. It’s worth remembering that in Kokomo, the late “wealth manager” Richard Schwartz almost gained control of the city’s pension funds. The Indiana Secretary of State’s office is currently collecting complaints from the victims of a Ponzi scheme allegedly run by Schwartz.

Seeking a second term

Although the start of filing for the May primary election is still three months away, Republican Mark McCann has announced he will be seeking a second term as Howard County Prosecutor.

McCann was first elected in 2010 and was unopposed in the general election. He previously served 16 years as chief deputy prosecutor during the term of Jim Fleming.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • DAY: God trusted us with them Well, you heard about my wife and I, and our families from the past, so it is time for me to tell you about two of the prettiest girls I have ever known. They are our daughters Debbie and Patty. They are the greatest gifts from God that we have had i

    April 19, 2014

  • LoBianco: Bigger ethics questions raised in House Turner review

    Members of the House Ethics Committee who will take up Rep. Eric Turner’s case face daunting tasks as they try to answer two questions: Did their powerful colleague violate any ethics rules in privately lobbying against a measure that would have hurt his family’s business?

    April 18, 2014

  • Letters to the Editor: April 18, 2014

    Attendees at the Tipton County Board of Commissioners meeting April 7 were treated to an appalling lack of both action and concern by the commissioners.

    April 18, 2014

  • Letter to the Editor: April 17, 2014

    On March 20 of this year I attended a public meeting of the Tipton County Economic Development Alliance. Members of this group include the three county commissioners, a member of the county council, two members from the city council, and the mayor.

    April 17, 2014

  • Hicks: Measuring the unmeasurable

    One aspect of economic research I think is especially powerful is the ability to measure or monetize the things that humans clearly value but for which a market price is not necessarily apparent. This is one of the aspects of economic analysis that gives it such dominance over other social sciences.

    April 17, 2014

  • Rob Burgess House of Burgess: Bush presents 'The Art of Leadership'

    On April 5, “The Art of Leadership: A President’s Personal Diplomacy,” opened at the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on the campus of Southern Methodist University. The display, which runs through June 3, boasts “portraits of more than two dozen world leaders” painted by Bush, according to the official literature.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bohanon: ‘Economics is fun’ in Vegas or in Bible study

    I am writing this on an airplane to Las Vegas. I’ll be attending the annual conference of the Association of Private Enterprise Education along with two of my colleagues and six of my students.

    April 16, 2014

  • Letters to the Editor: April 16, 2014

    At the time the agenda for the April 7 commissioner meeting came out, I was happy to see that the neglected commissioner board appointments were finally going to be addressed. These appointments had been in limbo for months on end.

    April 16, 2014

  • Hayden: Want better teacher ratings? Ask the kids

    The state may be back where it started, encumbered with a flawed teacher grading system, a year after implementing what were meant to be tough new standards.
    That was the general consensus of the State Board of Education days after teacher evaluation data were released last week.

    April 15, 2014

  • Letters to the Editor: April 15, 2014

    In a recent “public eye” article written by KT columnist Scott Smith about the proposed industrial wind turbine project; mention was made of the “new deal” brokered by Howard County Commissioners with E.ON.

    April 15, 2014

Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll