Poverty, Politics and Profit

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Submitted by phaster on May 11, 2017 - 7:05am

anyone else watch the PBS program about "Poverty, Politics and Profit?"


Affordable Housing Program Costs More, Shelters Fewer

On the south side of Dallas, Nena Eldridge lives in a sparse but spotless bungalow on a dusty lot. At $550 each month, her rent is just about the cheapest she could find in the city.

After an injury left her unable to work, the only income she receives is a $780 monthly disability check. So she has to make tough financial choices, like living without running water.

Every day, she fills bottles with water from a neighbor's house and takes them home. She washes her hands with water heated in an electric slow cooker. She uses a bucket to flush the toilet.

"I'm tired, but I don't have nowhere to go and I don't have enough money to do it," she says, fighting back tears. But she adds, "I'm not living on the streets. I'm not homeless."

Eldridge is among the 11 million people nationwide making these kinds of choices every day. The government calls them "severely rent burdened" — people paying more than half their income in rent.



IMHO this is yet another corruption/mismanagement issue that is going to contribute to TSHTF


When Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti unveiled his proposed budget last week, he called a $176-million effort to battle homelessness his top priority, highlighted a $35-million plan to mend broken streets and promised $2 million to clean up graffiti.

He did not mention the expenditure that dwarfs all of those combined...


LA, San Diego, Dallas, Chicago, etc. different places, same big problems!

Submitted by sdgrrl on May 11, 2017 - 8:43am.

I wish I had seen it. Will probably watch it tonight. Thanks for the suggestion.

I have two pretty severe disabilities- some of you are probably not surprised lol.

I had to take a 4 month leave and then a three week leave from my job within the 7 years I was there. Thank God I was in mgmt, so I received my full salary. Every day was and still is a fight.

My doctor has mentioned a few times from over the course of my first leave to the present, potentially I may want to apply for SSI. I just can't do it. Not until I am thinking I am Superman on Market Street. There is no trust fund and I will work till I die. The thought of living off of $750-$1200 a month scares the sh*t out of me.

For those on SSI you better hope you have a spouse, partner or family member who can help you out- let you stay with them, or you will really be screwed.

The life of someone on SSI and who is single is a life of fear, poverty and instability.

I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemy...except maybe just one.

Submitted by harvey on May 11, 2017 - 9:35am.

He did not mention the expenditure that dwarfs all of those combined...


20% of LA's budget goes to pay people who stopped showing up for work a long time ago.

Submitted by phaster on May 14, 2017 - 3:47pm.


I said it before and I'll say it again, I anticipate interesting times ahead all because shit for brains politicians are more interested in covering their own back sides than admitting anything is wrong w/ the way they setup/operate-portfolios and award themselves compensation/pensions

for example we see in local news


Supervisors raise their own pay in face of opposition

As some citizens yelled “shame on you,” San Diego County Supervisors voted Tuesday to give themselves a 12.5 percent pay raise,...

The move increases the supervisors’ salary by more than $19,000 and also raises their pension.


where the mindset of TPTB is to hide figures from the voters/taxpayers and hope that somehow the issue magically gets better/fixed OR at least goes away on their watch


‘OMG,’ ‘WTF’: Emails Show SANDAG Knew Forecasts Were Wrong, Went to Voters With False Promise Anyway


as for mitigations/solutions (to the public pension issue and its fallout), well all I can suggest is a have personal hedge in place so that its possible to run just a bit faster that the other guy because as the joke goes about two guys camping in the woods, the survivor is the guy who didn't get caught and crushed by the bear (market)

Submitted by CA renter on May 19, 2017 - 2:03am.

harvey wrote:
He did not mention the expenditure that dwarfs all of those combined...


20% of LA's budget goes to pay people who stopped showing up for work a long time ago.

I've been too busy to check in lately, but just had a moment to stop in and saw this most recent error of yours, Pri. As usual, you seem to take enormous pride in broadcasting your ignorance.

As stated multiple times before, a public employer does NOT pay pension benefits to those who are already retired. The pension costs noted in any given year are for those who are currently employed. These costs are calculated as a percentage of the **current employees'** compensation.

Just needed to correct you, yet again. Maybe someday you'll decide it's best to do some fact-checking before you post. That goes for your "invisible friend" gogogosandiego, too. You (and your alter-ego) have a particular knack for consistently getting things wrong.

[Though I've been told to stop feeding the troll (you), I couldn't let this one slide by.]

Submitted by harvey on May 23, 2017 - 3:31pm.

CA renter wrote:
That goes for your "invisible friend" gogogosandiego, too.

You were always a fanatic but it seems you've spiraled into downright creepy.

Submitted by phaster on May 28, 2017 - 11:40am.

harvey wrote:
CA renter wrote:
That goes for your "invisible friend" gogogosandiego, too.

You were always a fanatic but it seems you've spiraled into downright creepy.


crisis of faith ???

CA renter wrote:

September 4, 2016 - 11:17pm

....every once in awhile, even the trolls can make insightful points. IMHO, if my arguments can't hold up to some trolling (and it immediately becomes obvious when they're unable to make a valid point), then I need to re-assess.


and/or Déjà Poo (different day, same story)...

phaster wrote:

December 30, 2016 - 9:11am

CA renter wrote:

phaster wrote:

let me guess, you're going to respond by saying the academic report I found by googling is all part of a grand conspiracy by individuals like harvey, to take away earned entitlements of honest hard-working public employee union members who have contracts that were dutifully researched by individuals like yourself
CA renter wrote:

October 1, 2014 - 9:23pm

Yes, I've been following the pension issue for many, many years (far, far, far longer than you have), and I have also worked with negotiating committees and have done research for public employee unions.


correct my logic if I'm wrong but looking @ the data, seems as presently structured and operated the local portfolio mathematically sure seems no different than an unsustainable Ponzi scheme

starting w/ the three decade practice of a 13th pension payment, which the SDCERS board approved yet again for 2016 despite a recently reported $380 million "debt" spike


SDCERS Board Approves 13th Check and Corbett Benefits for 2016
Nov 04, 2016

The San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System (SDCERS) Board of Administration approved the payment of the “13th Check” supplemental benefit and the Corbett settlement benefit for eligible retirees. Eligible retirees will receive the payment as part of their November 2016 monthly retirement benefit.

The “13th Check” and Corbett settlement benefits are paid in years when the realized investment earnings of the fund are sufficient to pay them.



San Diego facing new pension debt
Sept 08, 2016

A recent $380 million spike in San Diego’s pension debt is forcing city officials to debate whether to begin paying that bill now or take the controversial step of pushing the financial pain several years down the road.

...The spike, which is the result of a new actuarial study showing that city employees and retirees are living significantly longer, would increase the city’s annual pension payment -- $261 million this year -- by $35 million, or more than 13 percent.

That increase would help the city continue to cover annual pension benefits for retired employees and continue steadily paying down its unfunded, long-term pension liability, which the new study increased from $2 billion to nearly $2.4 billion.

Mayor Kevin Faulconer and the City Council created the city’s first pension stabilization fund last spring with a $16 million initial contribution, but they didn’t expect the money to get wiped out in one year.


To put figures into context, for the finances to work out there is an assumption that the portfolio custodian(s) will look at certain performance benchmarks (i.e. that the over all value of the portfolio grows @ 7.25% each year)


SDCERS Board of Administration Adjusts Discount Rate to 7.25%
Nov 08, 2013

The San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System (SDCERS) Board of Administration today voted to reduce the System’s discount rate to 7.25%, affirming a recommendation by the system’s actuary Cheiron.


Yet the latest reported FY return of just a hair above 1% is far below the target of 7.25% so elementary school math tells me in effect the "debt" grows ever larger and the BAU three decade old practice of a 13th pension payment only exacerbates the overall debt.


SDCERS Reports Preliminary Return of 1.1% for Fiscal Year 2016
Aug 26, 2016

San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System (SDCERS) reported a preliminary return of 1.1% (net of fees) for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2016. Despite the low absolute return, the performance was in the top third of the All Public Funds Universe obtained from BNY Mellon and Investment Metrics. Assets under management were $6.8 billion as of June 30, 2016.




A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investing scam promising high rates of return with little risk to investors. The Ponzi scheme generates returns for older investors by acquiring new investors.



translate.google.com "older investors" = "public employee unions" AND "politicians"
translate.google.com "new investors" = more burden placed on "tax payers"

PS you all might find this interesting, a recent NY Times article:


mentioned "Calpers Cuts Investment Targets, Increasing Strain on Municipalities" and yet in San Diego County our "Supervisors, without debate, give initial approval to increasing their pay"


meanwhile the local school district is forced to make cuts (because of a mis-managed public pension portfolio)


[sarcasm ON]

yeah I don't see any economic problems ahead...

[sarcasm OFF]


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