They claim I live too long. And I aim to prove them right.

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Tax watchdog Jake Griffin.

My friend John Dillon posts about Illinois pensions this week.  I re-posted it down below.

Because it is a new year – I’m in the fourth year of my retirement from teaching – I will see a 3% bump in my Teacher Retirement System check.

I read in the Herald that I am cheating the system.

Jake Griffin – he calls himself a tax watchdog – reports that retired teachers are making more money in retirement than they were making when they were working.

“Yay,” I say to myself. “What a great deal!”

I pull out a pencil and do a little math. And it is true!

Oh. I’m not making it right now.

But I will.

Some day.

Fifteen years after my retirement date.

I will be 80 years old!

A quick point: The increase in the cost of living over the past fifteen has been around 3%, equal to our yearly TRS increase.

Tax watchdog Jack Griffin of the Herald does not mention I paid into Social Security for 20 years before I started teaching.  Due to federal law that reduces my benefits because I am collecting a teacher pension, I will receive $118 a month starting on my 70th birthday.

I will spend it on a celebratory dinner with Anne. She will have to pay her own way.

Tax watchdog Jack Griffin of the Herald is one of those guys who ignores the fact that the state spent decades as a pension deadbeat.  As a tax watchdog he somehow doesn’t notice how the rich pay the same tax rate as the poor in Illinois.

He thinks the problem is teachers live too long.

Because that, my friends, is the only way a teacher is making more in retirement than what they were making when they were teaching.

He thinks we are living too damn long.

And I aim to prove him right.

8 thoughts on “They claim I live too long. And I aim to prove them right.

  1. Yeah, Jack Griffin is something. I got in a heated debate with him over the fact of a 13th payment from the IMRF pension fund awhile back. This was just gravy in his view point, a lottery winning, etc.. Costing taxpayers money that IMRF members that did not deserve in his view point. The 13th payment is partial payment to keep up for inflation, etc.. It’s a small amount of the regular monthly pension payment. So what does Mr. Griffin tell me, we are not trying to take money away from IMRF members by stopping the so-called free gift of the 13th payment. The bill to stop the 13th payment was shelved. Funny how people who are trying to steal from you, have many ways to tell you they are not!

  2. Awhile back, Jack Griffin attacked IMRF pensions 13th payment. A partial one time payment of what you would receive monthly. With comparisons of like winning the lottery each year and so on. I had a heated debate with Mr. Griffin over this issue. In the end Mr. Griffin told me that they are not trying to take my pension money away from me. Could of fool me. It’s funny how when people are trying to steal from you, they try to say in many ways has possible that they trying are not doing so.

  3. Dear Fred,

    You mean we all should’t all just die so the taxpayers never have to pay back the money elected officials promised to pay and then misappropriated? How rude of us!

    The “I pay your pension and you are ripping me off!” delusion gets old very fast. No one pays for your pension but you. It is part of your earned compensation as an employee, not some “gift” from the taxpayers or the government. Now that bill has come due.

    Annual annuity adjustments are not something taxpayers fund, they are a benefit paid for by annuitants, and a part of their earned compensation plan. The annual increase was created to try to slow the erosion of purchasing power of a retiree pension.

    Social Security’s C.O.L.A. has a similar intent. It has actually increased benefits for it’s annuitants more than the A.A.I. has raised benefits for teachers. Are these retirees somehow ripping off taxpayers too? Or perhaps vulnerable old people deserve some inflation protection. The “watchdogs” will probably start in on that next.

    Everything paid into T.R.S. to fund pensions is earned compensation of the employee. It was paid as someone’s earnings. Taxes were used to pay workers for work. Workers “spent” part of that compensation to fund pensions. Compensation funded pensions, NOT TAXES! What will they argue next? That the health insurance you paid for belongs to them, not you? Sorry, Bruce and company are already there.

    Why do so many continue to operate under the delusion that public employee earnings are somehow still taxpayer money? Is it politicians appealing to jealousy? Or is it just disgruntled workers who feel “We don’t like that you get paid something we no longer get (perhaps because we didn’t demand it?)”

    Teacher earned compensation (pensions or anything else) doesn’t belong to taxpayers any more than private employee earnings belong to their employers. Does a private employer have any right to tell an employee how to spend what has already been earned? Does that private employer get to claim that those earnings are “undeserved” or “cost too much” and take back those earnings after the work is done?

    Most people would say no. If not, Then our past earnings are “off limits” too. I know I plan to live a long time and collect all that I have earned, whether these “watchdogs” like it or not.

    The real issue is the accumulated cost of past thievery by the state. Perhaps the state should try paying what they owe employees on time, rather than 50 years late. Interest on unpaid debt really adds up after a while. 4 out of every 5 dollars spent on so called “pension costs” are really interest on unpaid debt. Pay the bill!

  4. Note: our defined-benefit pension plan is less expensive for taxpayers than Social Security: the reason why Illinois legislators had negotiated for teachers to not pay into Social Security. And, yes, it is our earned compensation for many years of public service.

  5. What Mr. griffin fails to mention is that if the teachers were still working they would probably be earning even more than their pension. Everyone forgets that school districts offered retirement incentives to get rid of high paid veteran teachers – the argument was that they could hire two new teachers for the cost of one veteran.
    No matter how one cuts it, the TRS saved the Illinois taxpayers from tax increases for many years. Now it’s time to pay up!

  6. Fred, you greedy retired teacher, you–you will be receiving the princely (notice, I did not say kingly) sum of $118, & you are going to make Anne pay for her own dinner?
    BTW, it would appear that our dinners–sometime in the not-so-distant-future– may consist of…soylent green.

  7. “Watchdog?” Who appointed this presumptuous idiot to anything? My mother’s term for characters like Jake (Jack?) Griffin was “busybody.” Tell Jake or Jack that I only retired from teaching because retirement was a sure path to millionairedom. That’s why college grads all across Illinois have been falling all over themselves to get into teaching. I knew that back in 1969 when I began my career. That’s why I never bothered with the Lottery.

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