Monday, November 03, 2014

An Honest Democrat

It's not uncommon for me to vote for Democrats--in California, they're sometimes the only ones running for certain statewide offices!  Barring World War III, though, I can't imagine voting for one as an executive or a legislator, and even if WWIII were to happen, I still can't imagine what would cause me to vote for a Democrat for governor, president, congressman, senator, or assemblyman.

John Chiang has been our state controller for a few years now and is running for treasurer.  I've long respected his integrity, which is why I voted for him (by mail ballot) in this election.  This blurb from today, not being talked about at all in the big media, shows that my faith is not misplaced:
State Controller John Chiang dropped a political bomb the other day, although he was so quiet about it, one could say it was a stealth bomb.

Chiang added public pension systems to his already large fiscal database. One chart reveals that their “unfunded liabilities” – the gap between assets and liabilities for current and future pensions – exploded from $6.3 billion in 2003 to $198.2 billion in 2013.

Los Angeles’ city pension system dropped its assumed earnings, called the “discount rate,” last week. The board of California’s second largest pension system, covering teachers, was told last month by a panel of experts that its 7.5 percent assumption is likely to be under 7 percent for the next decade.

If a 7.5 percent discount rate, which is also used by the giant California Public Employees’ Retirement System and many local systems, is too high, the current $198.2 billion debt in Chiang’s report is, in reality, much higher.
That $198.2 billion is more than the annual state budget. California is doomed, as is my retirement.


maxutils said...

Couldn't agree with you more … Chiang has been a good find. Stockton is still aging it benefits, though ...

pseudotsuga said...

Time to pack up that retirement and move?
I haven't even bothered to look for jobs in Cali for that very reason.

Ellen K said...

My sister in law is married to a guy who retired from one of the CA power plants. They live on his pension in a million dollar house on the beach. I'm wondering between taxes and the rising cost of live in CA just how long they can sustain that lifestyle.