Congratulations, Ohio — You Have Just Bankrupted Your State

by Richard Young | November 15, 2011 8:00 am

Ohio_Flag_185[1]With Ohio’s vote last Tuesday, you have all just decided resoundingly to bankrupt your state and, in the process, kicked a really good governor in the face. You have allowed the public sector unions to run roughshod over you. Who in their right minds would want to start a small business or any other form of business in Ohio? Have you looked into who funded the charge against Senate Bill 5?

I am truly sorry to sound so sour. I grew up in Cleveland, watching Otto Graham, Lou Groza and Dante Lavelli play football for the Browns on freezing cold Lake Erie Sundays. Today, our family investment office in Naples, Fla., is dedicated to Paul Brown and the great Browns teams of the 1950s. Since we opened the Naples office nearly a decade ago, the sons of both Groza and Graham have visited. Before he passed away, Lavelli and I had a couple of wonderful phone discussions about the glory days of the Browns — I bet today’s Browns wish they had the old Jim Brown back. I was in attendance at the old Cleveland Stadium to watch Brown set records. So, yes indeed, there is no one alive with a more hopeful wish for the future of Ohio than yours truly.

For nearly five decades, my business has been advising conservative small-business owners and retired and soon-to-be-retired investors planning for a comfortable and secure retirement. I know what I am talking about when it comes to fiscal responsibility and investing for the future. I am certainly not a politician and, in fact, neither a Republican nor a Democrat. My sole interest in politics is how our government governs in the interest of my family and my clients. With that said, you can only imagine the sickness I feel as I read with despair the defeat of Ohio’s public employee labor rules bill[2].

When it comes to fiscal irresponsibility, no group does it worse then the public sector employee union crowd. Do you know that 90% of Long Island Rail Road workers retire with a disability? Wow! It must be a dangerous job working for the LIRR. The scam is, retire with a disability and add $36,000 to your annual retirement pension. Come on! This a joke, right? Unfortunately, this is no joke. A Wall Street Journal article lays out the whole ghastly mess[3].

You’ve read about the neat job California state troopers have for themselves. Unlike the LIRR crowd, the troopers indeed have a dangerous job, but not so as to allow a stunning 82% of senior troopers to be conveniently placed on disability just pre-retirement.

Under President Barack Obama’s watch, America’s credit rating has been downgraded for the first time in our country’s history. The federal government can cover its deficits by simply cranking up the printing presses, not withstanding Mr. Bernanke’s jive to the contrary, but you Buckeyes and your fellow profligates in California have no printing presses, and when the rating agencies wake up and downgrade your credit rating to junk, “poof” will go any future muni sales.

All of this leaves the cupboard bare and default with bankruptcy at hand. All those pensions your unions promised to its workers will be reneged on because there simply will be no cash. The jig, as they say, will be up. It is written in stone — and you folks vote to slit your and your pension-receiving neighbors’ throats? You might as well be planting mines in the backyard where your kids play.

Am I overstating the problem here? Check with the Greeks and the Italians for the first two acts of a long running financial horror play. You Buckeyes are lockstep in line for catastrophe, and you have let the hobnobbing Barack Obama and the public sector union leaders light the fuse to the time bomb. Honestly, I do not know why a good guy like John Kasich would want to stick around any longer. He was willing to risk his own career to straighten out Ohio’s fiscal mess, and you all have given John a resounding thumbs down.

America must pass a National Right To Work law. Buckeyes can gain some redemption by leading the way for such a law. Check out what Rand Paul, the flag bearer in the Senate, is up to[4], and seek redemption by helping to avoid bankruptcy and default for Ohio. It is darn late in the game, and I for one am terrified for you all.

This article originally appeared on[5].

  1. [Image]:
  2. the defeat of Ohio’s public employee labor rules bill:
  3. lays out the whole ghastly mess:
  4. Check out what Rand Paul, the flag bearer in the Senate, is up to:

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