Why the Attacks on Public Sector Workers and Their Unions

If one were to compute this for Kentucky, it would be reasonable to believe the results would be the same.

A second approach, is to utilize the huge bonanza millionaires will now enjoy as a result of the Bush tax cut extension for the next two years. The prolongation of the Bush tax cuts means that millionaires will receive a huge windfall of additional income. Thus, if states choose to revise their income tax rates commensurate with this huge windfall income, a new revenue stream would be available. The renewal of the Bush tax cuts effect only 5% of taxpayers in 2011. Thus, this would help mitigate state finances.

As the table below (figure 2) shows for Kentucky, additional revenues would be forthcoming for the state:

It is apparent from the table that in 2010, the top 1% of the taxpayers in Kentucky who have incomes of $818,173 receives total tax cuts amounting to $613,817. If you include the next 4% of top income earners, these folks are getting $1,056,445. Here is a pool of taxpayers, who in the name of fairness should be paying more state taxes.

Politicians and legislators, who are attacking unionized public sector workers, are anxious to dismantle civil service protections. They want to do this, so they can return to the old corrupt days when political machine bosses e.g. (Tammany Hall, Boss Tweed and other machine politicians) filled public sector employment with their cronies. If they could accomplish this, not only would they bust unions and abolish collective bargaining, but professionalism and competence would be absent from the workplace. Collective bargaining by unions reinforces high public service performance standards. What we are witnessing in Wisconsin currently, is a Republican governor trying to abolish collective bargaining, as a precursor to public sector union busting and thereby, destroy engage in the most blatant attempt all trade unions.

Thus, if state legislators were to reform current tax policies, a more fair and equitable budgetary process could take place. Ultimately, the way to overcome the fog of misstatements is to bring the truth to the American people. Thus, the attack against public sector unions can be viewed in its true light—protect the super rich and disarm the voice of the people—the trade union movement.

Seymour Slavin, Ph.D.

Published by the LA Progressive on February 21, 2011
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