By Val W. Zimnicki
Chicago—The $1.9 trillion stimulus package is really a government and state employee gift package. Many billions of dollars will go to Democrat-run states with huge pension deficits. Instead of reforms, these states will continue to freely mismanage their funds because there is no accountability. Taxpayers in states without huge, self-inflicted financial burdens will be paying for them.
The stimulus package contains $350 billion in taxpayer funded bailouts for state and local governments for debts incurred not related to the pandemic. These states like Illinois have mismanaged pension funds and the fix is in. So, this is not an anti-virus spending bill; it is an extension of governmental-powers bill. Illinois will receive more than $13 billion in state and local funding to “avoid dramatic budget cuts at every level of government,” according to Sen. Durbin. To socialist oriented legislators like him, governments can only grow not shrink. Indeed, the ideal would be if every employee was a subject of the federal or state workforce, and those pesky private employees didn’t exist.
The national stimulus bail-out creates a special $570 million payout to federal employees who aren’t working because they are caring for a family member who has coronavirus. If, for example, the family children (no matter what age) are not physically in school, then the parent/teacher will be paid for up to 600 hours in paid leave, receiving up to $35 per hour or $1,400 a week. The family is still eligible for this royal hand-out even if their schools are fully open or practicing remote teaching from those still closed. Of course, this program, like many others, excludes those working in the private sector. Federal royalty comes first.
Logically, public employees do not need unions as they are already protected by their employer, the government. Special treatment is given them because during contract negotiations, public unions sit across from people they helped elect through multi-million-dollar campaign contributions. Those elected pay them back and as surreptitious and immoral as this is, it is legal.
Of course, governments create problems via unnecessary lockdowns, which gives them an excuse to solve them by spending even more money without accountability.
The federal bailout includes $1.8 billion to Chicago; $7.5 billion to the state of Illinois; $5.7 billion to local governments (Illinois has about 7000). The stimulus bill is unwarranted because is creates dependence on big government.