The WSJ's letter section has gotten so much better in the last five months, I am eagerly anticipating reading the letters section. Here is one letter in the November 25, 2008 edition that deserves to be read by every American:
"Let's All Work for the Government"
In regard to your editorial "The Public Payroll Always Rises" (Nov. 18): I am appalled that during these extremely poor economic times our government is the only substantial hiring body in the whole economy. I used to work for the government in Michigan when I was in my 20s and remember being bored to death, because I only had about two hours of real work to do per day. Having many friends that are business owners, I see a huge contrast. Business owners work 24/7, pay high taxes [we pay all of our own payroll taxes, an automatic 6.2% increase in taxes], receive no government pensions or benefits... [there is no state unemployment insurance fund for any solo business owners]
I wonder if our upcoming government administration has ever owned a business and/or has any clue about the differences between workers in the public sector vs. the private sector. It is not beneficial for the economy for government to keep excessive employees on board...I would suggest lowering then freezing property taxes nationwide as a way to offer more stability in the housing market [this is a great idea, but the real problem we have now is that current owners cannot afford their monthly payments, especially the ones who have ARMs].
How many public servants are needed, especially now that the economy has contracted so much and will continue to do so? Every day we read that tens of thousands of workers are being let go, but never in the government sector. The government needs to act like a business while using our taxpayer money. Consider how many government employees are really needed, especially since every sector in every economy in the world is laying off during these austere times.
Tampa Bay, Fla.
To Ms. Marie and the WSJ: thank you for such a well-written letter.