Sunday, January 17, 2010

Two letters from RH Jones

January 16, 2010
Subject: Leone is more qualified but we should give Martin a chance & a brilliant exp [the rest of subject line was cut off in the copy that reached me. KBB]
To all:
Dr. Leone was better qualified but we must now live with Dr. Martin as a OH STRS board member. With his strong religious background, one would be correct to think that he will do what is best for us current retirees.
Also, I would like to praise the STRS employee, whoever he or she is, that the Defined Benefit explanation below is the BEST that I have ever read. Please read it. Personally, I think it is BRILLIANT! It gives all of us the ammunition that we need in fighting this war to keep and improve our STRS pension. To this unknown individual, I give you my thanks, congratulations and admiration for such a professional and researched response to the ignorant critics of public pension's Defined Benefit plan.
This is my personal opinion,
Robert Hudson Jones, retired teacher STRS member
January 17, 2010
Subject: Compliments and concerns for our OH STRS
Dear Laura Eklar and you staff:
In reference to the OH STRS email January Board News section of: “OTHER STRS OHIO News” I would like to congratulate you, and your staff for your defense of Defined Benefit Plans.
After the worse multiple coordinated Ohio newspaper attack, against all the Ohio’s public pension plans in all history (that included our OH STRS), I would like to, in addition to congratulations, also give my thanks and praise for a good job, done well. Better yet, it was a magnificent job! That section was well thought out and thoroughly researched.
As a retired professional teacher, I cannot help but to mention that in the “2009 MEMBER SURVEY RESULTS PRESENTED” the results of that same email showed “ -About one out of 20 retirees is struggling to make ends meet.” The words ‘make ends meet’ means to cope, manage, pay bills, break even, get by, and eke out a living. Personally I think there is a lot more than just one out of 20 retired educators that cannot make ends meet. My guess is a least five out of 20, if not more.
In all due respect to the Saferstein firm which our STRS hired to do the research by telephone, I have never been a believer in the accuracy of telephone surveys; because, most retirees that I know hang up the phone immediately when they hear the word survey. Another reason is that you never know if the call is legitimate or not. Anyone can say they are a survey company and ask personal questions. If fact, nowadays, we were told by various law enforcement authorities never to give out information over the phone; therefore, a sensible retired person would not take part.
Also, doubts are raised as to whether, or not, only those called are certain retired educators who have been predetermined to say the answer that is favorable to desired goal of the contractor of the survey – that could be either positive or negative for the retired teacher needs. One could then conclude for the above reasons telephone research is simply not reliable or accurate.
These are my personal individual thoughts.
RHJones, retired teacher OH STRS stakeholder
Larry KehresMount Union Collge
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