Tuesday, September 04, 2012

RH Jones: High-income critics among us "whiners" need to donate to the STRS

From RH Jones, August 23, 2012
To all retired teachers:
The few of us who have volunteered time and treasure working hard to maintain in our reasonable pension, our modest HC/Rx, and the 3% simple COLA which are often times looked down upon by fellow STRS retired members who have a greater yearly income. My point is this: These “well-to-do” opponents of us need to donate the COLA and HC/Rx part of their pension back to the STRS. For them not to do such could insure that they may be thought of as one who only feigns to be better. My reason for thinking this is at the August STRS meeting, I could not help but overhear a couple of educator ORTA officials stating that those speaking up for the COLA and HC/Rx in a meeting they had attended in Perry Township were “whiners”. They were laughing in a belittling manner. If we “whiners” are so laughable they; and I state once again, since they are so well off financially, they certainly should proudly donate their COLA and HC/Rx pension income back into the STRS as seed investment funding. This would help the STRS meet its 30-year funding goal and would help make us eligible for the fairly calculated 13th check again. To continue, those who feel our STRS is in such a poor financial condition as to need to cut our COLA and HC/Rx, certainly donating to it is the right thing for them to do. If no donations are made, they need to cease criticizing those of us who feel we are being hurt by the cuts that have already taken place, and are threatening to be cut even further.
The dictionary defines “monitor” as somebody ensuring proper conduct: somebody that checks for incorrect behavior or to correct unfair conduct. It is easy to pass off monitors, like me, as whiners, crybabies, and alarmists. Instead they should take the time to educate themselves on the devastating effects the cuts are having on us. And, if this awful proposition passes the legislature and is signed by the Governor Kasich - if you have also wrongly supported this hurtful legislation, and if you have a conscience, your miscalculation will basically come to haunt you until the end of your life - for you pretended the emperor was wearing clothes.
By the way, even a CORE member told K. Fluke and me that Gov. Kasich was doing a good job! How totally, unthinkingly, ignorantly, and wrongly thought out, to form such an ignorant conclusion. Kasich has cut public school funding in every possible way that he can. Education jobs and other public sector jobs have been enormously “pink slipped” since he took office. Informed people know that the federal stimulus dollars pouring into Ohio created the improvement in private sector jobs and tried to prevent public sector job losses. The trickle down economy does not work in Washington, and it does not work in Ohio. It only works for the rich among us.
In essence, we are living our retirement years in unprecedented financial insecurity brought on by those whom are so anxious to take from us our financial compensations, instead of providing a sufficient pension that should be inflation proof and provide a decent HC/Rx for ourselves and our dependents. Considering we went through during our teaching years, we do not need those of our own, as the young say: “dissing” those of us who are critics of the STRS “take away”.
The personal opinion of a STRS pensioner, Webster's Dictionary writes: "pensioner: one in receipt of a pension; hence dependent".
Larry KehresMount Union Collge
Division III
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