OT- CONTEST!!! Guess public sector household earnings

User Forum Topic
Submitted by sdrealtor on January 13, 2012 - 1:12pm

We are going to have a contest and the winner gets a decent bottle of wine. I just got back from a potential clients and saw their year end paystubs for last year. I did not list the property because it didnt fit what I thought I could do. Its a dual income household. Both work in the public sector. One in health care and the other in public safety. Lets see who can guess the 2011 gross earnings for the household not including any benefits paid for by their employer.

Have at it and dont be afraid of going over.

Contest runs through Monday.

Submitted by an on January 19, 2012 - 2:10am.

CA renter wrote:
They found that those in the public sector were, on average, making at or below what comparably qualified employees in the private sector were making.

and

CA renter wrote:
Public employees tend to be the most qualified employees in their respective fields. Of course they expect to be compensated for it.

are two totally different thing.

Also, what's the definition of qualified? Those who are most efficient? Those who have the most patent? Those who streamlined their jobs the most? Those are the characteristics I would consider for being qualified. If they are the most qualified, and the kind of service I get from DMV vs AAA or USPS vs FedEx/UPS say that they either measuring the wrong qualification or these qualified people are not performing at their peak level.

I know a few public sector engineers in both the school system and the Navy. I wouldn't say they're the most qualified. I've seen their tools getting dulled every year they're in the public sector. While the one in the private sector, if you let your tools get dulled, you're gone. Those I know who are in those public sector advise me not to get into there (I did consider switching at one point). Their reason is, if I get in, I can't get out. My tool set will be dulled and the skills I gain in the public sector won't be very applicable to the private sector.

Just because someone is not doing something doesn't mean they can't talk about it. If you follow your suggestion, then you should "step up to the plate" and be an investment banker or stop whining. Or better yet, you can apply to become a CEO of those banks or private equity firms. Is that a good argument to you? BTW, my skill sets is absolutely not applicable to public sector jobs. So, even if I wanted to, I can't switch, unless I want to go back to entry level Engineering. The longer you work in an industry, the harder it get for you to switch. Even between different industries in the private sector. Not sure about other profession, but engineering tend to be very specialized as you gain more and more experience.

BTW, in engineering, do you know where the most qualified tend go go? It's Google, Apple, Facebook, Qualcomm, Microsoft, etc. (depending on where they want to live). Those are where the cream of the crops go. Not to the public sector. Just talking to those who are doing engineering in the public sector, I'd be pulling my hairs out trying to deal with the bureaucracy. Also, with the speed that they're moving at, I'd be bored out of my mind.

Submitted by CA renter on January 19, 2012 - 2:13am.

briansd1 wrote:
CA renter wrote:
Public employees tend to be the most qualified employees in their respective fields. Of course they expect to be compensated for it.

Public employees may look qualified on paper, but are they hardworking and productive? No. Why not? Because they are protected by work rules that don't work them that hard.

I'm not necessarily saying public employees should work harder but I'll never believe they are more productive than similar private sector workers.

Let me give you two examples:

You can do most DMV paperwork at AAA instead of DMV. The AAA employees are more pleasant because they try to sell you insurance services by making appointments for their agents.

Go to DMV and you get grumpy old hags who are difficult.

AAA used to process vehicle paperwork for friends and family of members as a courtesy. But now, they will only process paperwork for members. Why? Because AAA has a contract with DMV that stipulates so; and DMV audits them. DMV audits them because if AAA processes paperwork for everybody, DMV might as well outsource all their work.

My cousin retired to South Florida. She's very well qualified and wanted to volunteer at the library. She's cheerful and upbeat and would do a great job for free.

The library claims that they need help and want volunteers, but they really don't because they want to protect their jobs. They would rather have shorter library hours than take volunteers who might "steal" their jobs. So they erect roadblocks, etc... It's not about public service.

Another thing, fire departments used to be volunteer in many parts of the country. But now, you need certification this and that for "safety". Of course, for the certifications, it takes years of work and kissing ass to the right people. It's 90% bull.

Personally, I'd rather have less safety and have a volunteer fire department nearly free of charge to the taxpayers.

While I agree that some employees are kept on when they shouldn't be, bad employees DO get fired.

That being said, most public employees are exceptionally good workers, and are very dilligent when it comes to their jobs. The reason: they don't want to lose their benefits. You have no idea how powerful a tool those benefits are when it comes to the public sector. Take them away, and you'll see high turnover rates (which I've explained before will break any govt employer before any "pension crisis" will), and a far less motivated workforce.

FWIW, my mom was a volunteer librarian and never met any of the resistance you've mentioned here.

We get into the "volunteer firefighter" discussion in this thread on pages 7-9.

http://piggington.com/ot_public_pay_amp_...

Submitted by an on January 19, 2012 - 2:24am.

CA renter wrote:
Take them away, and you'll see high turnover rates (which I've explained before will break any govt employer before any "pension crisis" will), and a far less motivated workforce.

Really? Then how come we're not seeing this problem in the private sector at good companies? Companies who treat their employees well. The one I see with high turn over rates are the crappy employers who don't respect and treat their employees well. Those also tend to go under as well. This might not be a bad thing, whipping the public employers into shape to keep pace with the good private employers.

Submitted by CA renter on January 19, 2012 - 2:33am.

AN wrote:
CA renter wrote:
They found that those in the public sector were, on average, making at or below what comparably qualified employees in the private sector were making.

and

CA renter wrote:
Public employees tend to be the most qualified employees in their respective fields. Of course they expect to be compensated for it.

are two totally different thing.

Also, what's the definition of qualified? Those who are most efficient? Those who have the most patent? Those who streamlined their jobs the most? Those are the characteristics I would consider for being qualified. If they are the most qualified, and the kind of service I get from DMV vs AAA or USPS vs FedEx/UPS say that they either measuring the wrong qualification or these qualified people are not performing at their peak level.

I know a few public sector engineers in both the school system and the Navy. I wouldn't say they're the most qualified. I've seen their tools getting dulled every year they're in the public sector. While the one in the private sector, if you let your tools get dulled, you're gone. Those I know who are in those public sector advise me not to get into there (I did consider switching at one point). Their reason is, if I get in, I can't get out. My tool set will be dulled and the skills I gain in the public sector won't be very applicable to the private sector.

Just because someone is not doing something doesn't mean they can't talk about it. If you follow your suggestion, then you should "step up to the plate" and be an investment banker or stop whining. Or better yet, you can apply to become a CEO of those banks or private equity firms. Is that a good argument to you? BTW, my skill sets is absolutely not applicable to public sector jobs. So, even if I wanted to, I can't switch, unless I want to go back to entry level Engineering. The longer you work in an industry, the harder it get for you to switch. Even between different industries in the private sector. Not sure about other profession, but engineering tend to be very specialized as you gain more and more experience.

BTW, in engineering, do you know where the most qualified tend go go? It's Google, Apple, Facebook, Qualcomm, Microsoft, etc. (depending on where they want to live). Those are where the cream of the crops go. Not to the public sector. Just talking to those who are doing engineering in the public sector, I'd be pulling my hairs out trying to deal with the bureaucracy. Also, with the speed that they're moving at, I'd be bored out of my mind.

In the fields I'm familiar with, "highest qualified" would mean those with the highest/best/most-specific-to-the-job degrees, the most experience in that particular field, and those who score at the top of the aptitude and/or psychological and/or physical agility tests.

Unlike the public sector, getting "banker/CEO" jobs in the private sector depends much more on how well-connected you are rather than how capable you are. I generally don't complain about their compensation unless public sector employees and taxpayers are forced to make up their losses.

As far as the USPS/FedEx or AAA/DMV comparisons, It would be interesting to find out the per-capita cost of each. Obviously, the USPS and DMV handle far larger loads and require consumers to pay far less. I'd like to see what the USPS and the DMV cost per capita/transaction after taking into account all govt pay/subsidies, etc. so we could compare apples-to-apples.

I'm not in tech, but it would seem obvious that the "cream of the crop" would go to those private firms because they pay a whole lot more, with a far higher liklihood that an employee could move up in a rather significant way.

Of course, I've heard that the "real" cream-of-the-crop in tech end up in places like this, but we can't really know what they are getting paid. I'm guessing it would be even more difficult to get hired here than at Google IF one is qualified.

http://www.nsa.gov/careers/jobs_search_a...

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 8:19am.

First, CAR, can you please learn to cut down the size of your "quote" sections? Talk about tiresome...

CA renter wrote:
But I'm not the one trying to strong-arm a solution. Pri and others have done so, not I. They want to force all public employees into DC pension plans (which can't happen, anyway, for a number of reasons), irrespective of WHY the pension problems exist and WHO caused them.

You are putting words in my mouth but, even so, what's wrong with the idea as you present it?

First we don't "force" anybody, we simply offer public-employees the same form of compensation that everybody else gets.

If they don't like it, they can work somewhere else.

No "forcing" necessary. Now, your plan involves suspending Constitutional due process, seizing assets and throwing people in jail.

Who is doing the "forcing" here?

Quote:
As for the bankers' names, I DID list some names in the other thread. Apparently, Pri didn't see it.

You didn't "list" anything. You referenced two, maybe three, names of people who appear to have been involved in mortgage shenanigans. Their combined net worth amounted to less than 1% of the total shortfall.

So far you have offered no solution whatsoever - just a vague, vindictive fantasy.

Quote:
Basically, I think everyone who was involved in originating, securing, selling, and rating of "toxic" securities needs to be investigated, especially if they mischaracterized those investments anywhere along that chain, and those at the very top (especially) need to be brought to justice.

Can we also investigate everyone who was involved in drafting, negotiating, managing, and projecting during all the backroom pension negotiations? Can we identify public employees who gamed the system in order to receive an excessive amount of public money?

Or are public employees exempt from the principles that are so important to you?

Quote:
Public employees should not be taking the hit for these a$$holes.

And the public (taxpayers) should not be taking the hit for any public employee a$$holes.

(Brian's right, it sure ain't about service anymore...)

Quote:
BTW, the greatest crimes didn't happen on the short side when the market was about to tank, they happened as the market was going up.

It's amazing how you have become an expert on the financial markets and securities law just by reading Rolling Stone articles.

But where was the outcry from the public employees when the market was going up?

Oh yeah, they were too busy flipping homes like everybody else...

But here's the crux of it:

It's not about revenge, it's about saving our schools and infrastructure going forward. We need a solution.

You don't seem to get it.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 9:21am.

What unadultered BS from CAR. Go back and read the thread. I wasnt referring to public employees in a derrogatory way. I was referring to two specific workers who posters kept saying were sr level/executive types and I was simply trying to make the point that they were rank and file in their departments. Is calling them rank and file derrogatory also.

The elitist attitude toward people who do actual work is BS also. CAR beleives that you reward those who put their heads down and plow forward in their jobs day in and day out for years without taking risk of job or income loss. As soon as the word risk comes up, she automatically takes it to mean financial derivitive engineers and their ilk on Wall Street. I beleive in the capitalistic ideals this country was founded on. That taking risk with ones time and money to innovate is what should be rewarded. Instead of going to work with ATT (pre-privatization/break up of Baby Bells) that could mean joining a start-up in SD called QCOM not knowing if you would have a job next month. It could mean taking a job at a biotech start-up working on a cancer drug instead of working for the state toxicology lab. It could mean going to college and med school (most dont make it) instead of becoming an EMT. It could mean opening a new restaurant like Panera Bread instead of working as a cook at the employee cafeteria in the County Services building. When people take risk like that they more often than not fail and those that succeed should be rewarded. That is how innovation and progress occurs. That is what made this country great and will keep it great instead of being another failed Socialist regime like the USSR, East Germany etc.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 9:25am.

CA renter wrote:

Of course, I've heard that the "real" cream-of-the-crop in tech end up in places like this, but we can't really know what they are getting paid. I'm guessing it would be even more difficult to get hired here than at Google IF one is qualified.

http://www.nsa.gov/careers/jobs_search_apply/hirerequire.shtml

Not true. Havent you heard? The CIA and NSA are shuttering their operations because of the success of their Facebook initiative

Submitted by NotCranky on January 19, 2012 - 9:38am.

So, did markmax33 get his bottle of decent wine?

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 9:43am.

sdrealtor wrote:
As soon as the word risk comes up, she automatically takes it to mean financial derivitive engineers and their ilk on Wall Street. I beleive in the capitalistic ideals this country was founded on. That taking risk with ones time and money to innovate is what should be rewarded. Instead of going to work with ATT (pre-privatization/break up of Baby Bells) that could mean joining a start-up in SD called QCOM not knowing if you would have a job next month. It could mean taking a job at a biotech start-up working on a cancer drug instead of working for the state toxicology lab. It could mean going to college and med school (most dont make it) instead of becoming an EMT. It could mean opening a new restaurant like Panera Bread instead of working as a cook at the employee cafeteria in the County Services building. When people take risk like that they more often than not fail and those that succeed should be rewarded. That is how innovation and progress occurs. That is what made this country great and will keep it great instead of being another failed Socialist regime like the USSR, East Germany etc.

Well said.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on January 19, 2012 - 10:08am.

And yet...

In the same way that consumer spending is good for the economy but may be bad for individual families...

Perhaps risk taking maybe a social good in the aggregate but detrimental to the average individual.

Just a thought...not sure what to make if it...

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 10:10am.

Government policy deals with aggregates.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 10:32am.

and ponies. Government policy needs to do a better job dealing with ponies. Bring on Vermine Supreme.

On a more serious note when my son found Vermin Supreme and showed him to me he thought he was just some silly idiot on the internet. I explained that he was actually quite bright and what he was doing was mocking the system with satire. It was a nice opportunity to start explaining the flaws of the political system with a 12 year old.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 10:33am.

Jacarandoso wrote:
So, did markmax33 get his bottle of decent wine?

I still think FSD has won and sent him a PM to which he has not responded. I'll give him a week and if he doesnt get back to me it goes to markmax.

Submitted by an on January 19, 2012 - 10:35am.

sdrealtor wrote:
CA renter wrote:

Of course, I've heard that the "real" cream-of-the-crop in tech end up in places like this, but we can't really know what they are getting paid. I'm guessing it would be even more difficult to get hired here than at Google IF one is qualified.

http://www.nsa.gov/careers/jobs_search_apply/hirerequire.shtml

Not true. Havent you heard? The CIA and NSA are shuttering their operations because of the success of their Facebook initiative


To add on top of that, I think guys like Brin, Page, Gates, Zuckerberg, Jacobs, Yang, Jobs, Wozniak, etc. are what I'd consider true cream of the crop. I don't know if the guys at NSA is anymore qualified in digital security than the guys at Norton, Symantec, and other digital security software companies.

Submitted by an on January 19, 2012 - 10:36am.

pri_dk wrote:
sdrealtor wrote:
As soon as the word risk comes up, she automatically takes it to mean financial derivitive engineers and their ilk on Wall Street. I beleive in the capitalistic ideals this country was founded on. That taking risk with ones time and money to innovate is what should be rewarded. Instead of going to work with ATT (pre-privatization/break up of Baby Bells) that could mean joining a start-up in SD called QCOM not knowing if you would have a job next month. It could mean taking a job at a biotech start-up working on a cancer drug instead of working for the state toxicology lab. It could mean going to college and med school (most dont make it) instead of becoming an EMT. It could mean opening a new restaurant like Panera Bread instead of working as a cook at the employee cafeteria in the County Services building. When people take risk like that they more often than not fail and those that succeed should be rewarded. That is how innovation and progress occurs. That is what made this country great and will keep it great instead of being another failed Socialist regime like the USSR, East Germany etc.

Well said.


I second this as well. sdr took the words straight out of my mouth.

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 10:38am.

Markmax gets second place.

How appropriate.

Maybe Romney will decide not to claim his prize also.

There's still hope!

(Am I in the wrong thread?)

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 10:44am.

AN wrote:
I don't know if the guys at NSA is anymore qualified in digital security than the guys at Norton, Symantec, and other digital security software companies.

I think the NSA has a handful of the very best mathematicians surrounded by an army of mediocre bureaucrats collecting "middle class welfare."

...or, based on sdr's numbers, likely "upper-middle class welfare."

Submitted by an on January 19, 2012 - 10:48am.

pri_dk wrote:
AN wrote:
I don't know if the guys at NSA is anymore qualified in digital security than the guys at Norton, Symantec, and other digital security software companies.

I think the NSA has a handful of the very best mathematicians surrounded by an army of mediocre bureaucrats collecting "middle class welfare."

...or, based on sdr's numbers, likely "upper-middle class welfare."


But I have to believe these digital security firms also have at least a handful of the very best mathematicians as well. After all, their software are being used by many many companies. If they don't have the best working for them, then they wouldn't survive, right?

Submitted by legallyblue on January 19, 2012 - 10:57am.

I think FSD changed his guess after you posted the number. Look at the time of his entry:

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on January 17, 2012 - 11:14am.
$ 253,897.13

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 11:07am.

Ahhh!! I did not see that. We have a new winner. Markmax claim your prize.

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 11:10am.

Hilarious!

Will Mitt Romney get caught cheating also!?!?

Could this be a sign of things to come?

Submitted by UCGal on January 19, 2012 - 11:56am.

legallyblue wrote:
I think FSD changed his guess after you posted the number. Look at the time of his entry:

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on January 17, 2012 - 11:14am.
$ 253,897.13


Interesting that someone created a login identity just to point this out.

Submitted by zzz on January 19, 2012 - 12:05pm.

CA renter wrote:
Public employees tend to be the most qualified employees in their respective fields. Of course they expect to be compensated for it.

That being said, most public employees are exceptionally good workers, and are very dilligent when it comes to their jobs.

In the fields I'm familiar with, "highest qualified" would mean those with the highest/best/most-specific-to-the-job degrees, the most experience in that particular field, and those who score at the top of the aptitude and/or psychological and/or physical agility tests.

Unlike the public sector, getting "banker/CEO" jobs in the private sector depends much more on how well-connected you are rather than how capable you are.

You bave really drank the government kool-aid or have low standards for what you deem to be "highest qualified" because your statements above are just not true of MANY government workers.

They are not the best educated- I know MANY government workers personally who do not have college degrees, who are in management and get paid very well. They have told me many stories about their lazy coworkers, those who are out sick a lot but really aren't sick, those who really should have been fired or forced to retire, but are just sitting around on their arses waiting to get their max pensions. They have countdowns on their days left till they get their fat juicy pensions.

One friend will not leave the public sector because they cannot get a management job in a comparable private sector job without a college degree and they definitely cannot get paid what they make. AND because of the benefits, never ever would find those benefits in the private sector- straight from their mouth.

I have a friend who worked in government and went to the private sector and is going back to government. Guess why? Because he can get paid MORE by government, work less, and get better benefits.

As to your comment about getting jobs because you are connected, oh my, please don't be so naive about how the world works... Life is about being connected, the rich are connected, the powerful are connected. Do you think top level government officials get their jobs because they are not well connected, because they don't play politics, because they haven't kissed someone's ass, or done favors, or gone drinking with the right people? Please, wake up and realize that government employees are no better than private sector workers.

In some cases, they are the same, in others they are better, but in a lot of others, they are downright awful but don't get fired. I think the issue most people have with government workers is not with the ones that are good, or even the same, but the ones that are lazy, stupid, and incompetent and do not get fired. OH and yeah, their ridiculous pensions.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 1:16pm.

Good point. Nowhere is nepotism more prevalent than in government jobs. Don't believe it? Watch all the job changes and appointments as playoffs when a new politician takes office.

Submitted by blake on January 19, 2012 - 1:27pm.
Submitted by briansd1 on January 19, 2012 - 2:07pm.

CA renter wrote:

FWIW, my mom was a volunteer librarian and never met any of the resistance you've mentioned here.

In what capacity was she a volunteer librarian? Was she out front sharing her knowledge with customers of was she treated like a teenager replacing books on stacks?

These days, you need certification this and that to be a librarian; but in reality you just need to be well-read and knowledgeable and a variety of subjects.

Localities are cutting library hours and closing libraries. I'm not seeing community outreach to replace those library hours.

CA renter wrote:

We get into the "volunteer firefighter" discussion in this thread on pages 7-9.

http://piggington.com/ot_public_pay_amp_benefits?page=6

"for your safety" and "for our protection" are just code for "pay me while I tell you what to do, the way I want it done."

That applies in the public and well as private sectors when there's a captive audience from which you can make money.

A nurse practitioner can't prescribe a cold remedy "for your protection"; you need to see the MD. What they don't tell you is "by the way, that'll cost twice as much thanks to the barriers to entry that protect the establishment."

Submitted by CA renter on January 19, 2012 - 4:50pm.

briansd1 wrote:
CA renter wrote:

FWIW, my mom was a volunteer librarian and never met any of the resistance you've mentioned here.

In what capacity was she a volunteer librarian? Was she out front sharing her knowledge with customers of was she treated like a teenager replacing books on stacks?

These days, you need certification this and that to be a librarian; but in reality you just need to be well-read and knowledgeable and a variety of subjects.

Localities are cutting library hours and closing libraries. I'm not seeing community outreach to replace those library hours.

CA renter wrote:

We get into the "volunteer firefighter" discussion in this thread on pages 7-9.

http://piggington.com/ot_public_pay_amp_benefits?page=6

"for your safety" and "for our protection" are just code for "pay me while I tell you what to do, the way I want it done."

That applies in the public and well as private sectors when there's a captive audience from which you can make money.

A nurse practitioner can't prescribe a cold remedy "for your protection"; you need to see the MD. What they don't tell you is "by the way, that'll cost twice as much thanks to the barriers to entry that protect the establishment."

She did both, replacing books and checking people out/answering questions.

Regarding the volunteer firefighting, you clearly didn't read the thread I linked. I'm not talking about "for your protection." Research the stats for yourself if you don't believe me.

Submitted by sdrealtor on January 19, 2012 - 4:53pm.

Ahhhh.....she replaced books and checked people out "In the good old days"

Submitted by CA renter on January 19, 2012 - 4:55pm.

pri_dk wrote:
sdrealtor wrote:
As soon as the word risk comes up, she automatically takes it to mean financial derivitive engineers and their ilk on Wall Street. I beleive in the capitalistic ideals this country was founded on. That taking risk with ones time and money to innovate is what should be rewarded. Instead of going to work with ATT (pre-privatization/break up of Baby Bells) that could mean joining a start-up in SD called QCOM not knowing if you would have a job next month. It could mean taking a job at a biotech start-up working on a cancer drug instead of working for the state toxicology lab. It could mean going to college and med school (most dont make it) instead of becoming an EMT. It could mean opening a new restaurant like Panera Bread instead of working as a cook at the employee cafeteria in the County Services building. When people take risk like that they more often than not fail and those that succeed should be rewarded. That is how innovation and progress occurs. That is what made this country great and will keep it great instead of being another failed Socialist regime like the USSR, East Germany etc.

Well said.

No, the kind of "risks" people are referring to when they talk about the risk-takers who've improved the quality of life, made things more efficient, and increased productivity are the ones who come up with their own ideas and/or the ones who finance them directly.

Going to work for a private company vs a public company as an employee doesn't count.

If you want to do some research (which so many here seem incapable of), dig deeper into where the funding for the vast majority of basic research comes from. It's not the private market and the high-paid risk-takers who are taking the greatest risks. It comes from taxpayers in almost every case.

Submitted by harvey on January 19, 2012 - 5:30pm.

"Do some research" is another way of saying "I don't have any evidence, but I'll just tell you it exists anyway."

Since you are so skilled at it (and the rest of us are inept), please show us some "research" that demonstrates how companies like Qualcomm, Intuit, Apple, Microsoft, Genentech, etc. get their capital, R&D, or ANY significant funds from "taxpayers in almost every case."

Sorry you have to do it yourself. But I'm certain that none of us feel like spending hours googling for some fact that doesn't exist in the desperate hope of finding something that supports your point of view.

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