Have you noticed that all the people rioting in Greece and other countries over governments' new found austerity are welfare recipients and government workers? The British workers - sadly said to to that country's largest worker bloc - are threatening to go out on strike. Just like the state workers in Madison, Wisconsin acting badly, these government workers world wide are certainly not helping themselves with those of us who pay their bills. So here is a modest proposal: public worker's total package of salary and perks cannot be greater than comparable private sector workers. The president loves to rant and rail over private sector fact cats, but the silence is deafening over the compensation packages of union leaders. I would also like to see all active duty military fully exempt from all taxes state, local and Federal - much like what is accorded diplomats. Ronald Reagan fired the striking air controllers. It is about time that rioting government workers also get fired and their salaries and perks brought into line with the private sector workers. Another modest proposal would be to reduce the Federal workforce by 3 percent per year across the board. The government workforce is bloated because the government does not have a profit motive and can ignore all the basics fundamentals of finance and economics. As a former federal government employee, I say let the Fed's earn their money by enforcing discipline on them.
Harold A. Black is professor emeritus in the Department of Finance, University of Tennessee, Knoxville having retired after 24 years of service. He has served on the faculties of American University, Howard University, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and the University of Florida. His government service includes the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and as a Board Member of the National Credit Union Administration. He also has served on the boards of directors Home Savings of America and its parent company, H. F. Ahmanson & Co., Irwindale, California prior to its merger with Washington Mutual Savings Bank, on the board of New Century Financial Corporation, Irvine, California, then the nation’s largest real estate investment trust and as director and later chairman of the Nashville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He writes an occasional article for the Knoxville News-Sentinel at http://www.knoxnews.com/staff/dr-harold-black/. His web page is haroldablackphd.com