Governor Schwarzenegger (aka Terminator) nails what I believe is one of the most pressing social/fiscal issues of a generation in an editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal. The social contracts of 20-30 years of service and then retirement in the public sector no longer make sense in the face of today’s competitive realities. (ie retirement at 45-55) The above graph clearly shows that the public sector has no competitive forces keeping it in check and that benchmarking the benefits of one public sector group against another is deceptively outdated.
If and when such plans fail, the revolt of those who end up having to pay for their shortfalls will make today’s tea parties look like harmless sandbox play. This need not be an issue of class warfare – though there will be those who try to promote it that way – but one of cold hearted reality. The debate ahead will not be an easy undertaking and and in this sense, it is fitting that the Terminator launched the first salvo.
Let’s all hope he’ll “be back.”