Keeping retirement weird. Paris. Thank you Gino DiVito.


Starting Monday and for the next two weeks my postings will be intermittent.

In about a week, Anne and I will be celebrating 40 years of marriage.

We will be celebrating in Paris and the wine region of Bordeaux.

We are fortunate that our retirement gives us time to travel, although most of our travels are to be with family.

But traveling in Spring and Fall rather than in the summer high season makes it more affordable and we still have to work off of a tight budget. And Anne has here retirement income.

For single retirees, it is much harder.

None of this would have been possible had Michael Madigan, John Cullerton, Pat Quinn and the Democrats in the Illinois legislature gotten away with the theft of public employee pensions.

Through all the years that we fought for our contractual and constitutional right to receive our full retirement pension, I tried not to even give a thought to what what our own lives would be like if we lost. It would have cost us a lot.

More than a trip to Paris for our 40th wedding anniversary.

I tried to stay focused on the bigger issue and the impact pension theft would have on the tens of thousands of current retirees and current public workers.

I wasn’t being altruistic. I think it would have been too stressful if I thought too much about the personal impact of losing.

It was only when the Illinois Supreme Court announced that pension theft was illegal that we sat down to calculate the meaning of the ruling on us.

Sometime next week, Anne and I will be having a glass of wine in a little town in France’s Bordeaux wine country.

It won’t be a bottle of $100 Mouton Rothschild.

But it will be good.

And we will raise a glass to Gino DiVio, the lawyer hired by the Illinois Retired Teachers Association who argued our case before the Supreme Court.

And we will toast all the retirees and organizations that battled for pension rights.

Because I know we’re not done.

7 Replies to “Keeping retirement weird. Paris. Thank you Gino DiVito.”

  1. Have a wonderful time. You deserve it. Many thanks for all you – and the other retired activists – have done and continue to do.

  2. Have a wonderful trip, Fred. We are still trying to get to Napa. BTW, I don’t think any judge, supreme, or lower were ever going to rule against pensions and 3% compounded COLA’s because the powers that be and wealthy elite with cadillac pensions wouldn’t have it. Healthcare benefits is another thing and we may lose there because in a few years with those 6000 dollar compounded increases it becomes only fractional for the big shots. Us peons though can be sacrificed.

  3. Enjoy your well-deserved vacation, Fred & Anne. C’est la vie!
    (But don’t wear your Dodgers cap…I hear the Parisians just LOVE the Cubs!!)

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