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Private Policing

By 1990, for the first time, more Americans were employed as private security officers than as public police officers.

I wonder why.

Maybe this has something to do with it:

So a police captain receives $306,000 a year in pay and benefits, a lieutenant receives $247,644, and the average for firefighters — 21 of them earn more than $200,000, including overtime — is $171,000. Police and firefighters can store up unused vacation and leave time over their careers and walk away, as one of the more than 20 who recently retired did, with a $370,000 check. Last year, 292 city employees made more than $100,000. And after just five years, all police and firefighters are guaranteed lifetime health benefits.

When San Diego was earning the sobriquet “Enron by the sea,” firefighters could retire at 50 with 90 percent of their pensions — almost full pay for not working during half of their expected adult lives.

state and local governments have a cumulative $1.5 trillion shortfall in commitments for retiree health care. But it is the pension crisis that most dramatically illustrates Lowenstein’s thesis about the slow accretion of power by the unions … When pension benefits come due, the people who promised them, thereby buying labor peace and winning elections, are long gone.

Vallejo’s unions contend that the city is solvent enough to meet its obligations. But last Friday a court disagreed, holding that the city is eligible for bankruptcy protection. A lawyer for Vallejo says the unions will have to negotiate a “plan of adjustment.” Other cities are watching, perhaps including the one across the bay.

San Francisco recently reported that 184 of its employees made at least $30,000 apiece in overtime in the first half of this year. A nurse at the county jail made $128,000 in overtime, putting him on track to top his total 2007 compensation of about $350,000. Nice work if you can get it, and you can get it in many places.

That was from George Will.

3 Responses to “Private Policing”

  1. Speedmaster says:

    Thank you, unions! 😉

  2. Michael says:

    I was thinking about jobs. I have to get one since I’m married now. I’m probably too late to get on a deal like this, though.

  3. […] Most of the rhetoric is that what is happening is morally wrong, and like all moral wrongs should never be condoned. But is it true that moral wrongs are never condoned in society? I think all of us would agree that the random robbery of little old ladies is morally wrong. We, as society, could reduce the number of robberies that little old ladies sufferto any amount we choose if we were willing to pay for a sufficient number of police officers or private protection agents. […]

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