The op/ed side of the Times remains so fucked up: for "state employees" they mean "tax collectors aiming to steal our collection of pearl-handled walking sticks".
Besides, who is going to pay for landing pads for the helicopters of the rich, if not the Middle Class?
3 still can't deny that some state employees were gaming the system at the expense of you and I (tax payers). At the very least, the "managers' should be fired.
@3, yes, a handful of people were cheating. Cheating is bad. But in the larger picture of budget deficits, it doesn't matter. It's classic tea party economics -- you're short a million bucks, so you go looking for pennies on the ground. "Tighten your belts". Pfft. It has no impact on the problem.

And all the people who aren't cheating get screwed because of it.
The thing is, upper-income hacks like the Blethens et al wouldn't continue to use this "divide and conquer" tactic if it wasn't so effective.

Unless and until individuals who make up the lower and middle-classes come to the conclusion that sticking together and collectively working for a common good is better than going it alone in the hopes of someday winning the upper-income jackpot, the upper-class will continue to pit them against each other, to their perpetual detriment.
There is always a market in telling the rich that the problem is everyone else. Well, actually, there's a market in telling _anyone_ that the problem is someone else, but the rich pay best.
I dunno...

I am a former employee of D.S.H.S., and I can tell you that this is but the tip of the iceberg, when it comes to outright thievery & abuse by state employees. Someone needs to do some investigating into that side of the story. The exploitation I witnessed would make your head spin.
Oh, God! Another post from this insufferable windbag!
Keep your grubby little hands off my estate!
Double dipping should be stopped because it's cheating, but explain to me how it costs the state a huge amount of money.

Instead of paying one person a pension and a salary, the state will end up paying two people, one a pension, and the other a salary. Seems like it should be nearly a zero-sum game, or am I missing something?
cats @10,

The cost argument against double-dipping is that incentivizes workers to retire and collect both, when they might otherwise keep working full time. So it can end up costing the pension fund.

But like I said, it really has little to do with the current budget crisis.
Double-dipping is something so easy to get all hot and bothered about, but what's the alternative? If an employee has the right to retire on a pension, you can't stop them. So then you need to hire someone to replace them. If that person is the most qualified for the job, then why deprive the state of their services? Why pay the same for someone less qualified?

Here's a thought experiment. Would you feel better if instead of hiring Washington state employees on a pension, we only hired Oregon state employees on a pension? Then they could hire all of ours. No more double-dipping, and problem solved.
The Times’ Republican attitude does show up once in a while. Isn’t this the same company that smashed its union employees, at great expense, only to hasten the newspaper’s own demise? They suck.
Nothing ending a few unneeded wars and the removal of all corporate tax exemptions couldn't fix.
@12 is correct. Let alone all the filthy Canucks who retire here and double-dip.
@3: I second what @4 said. There's always going to be someone who cheats the system, but that doesn't mean that honest, well-intentioned workers should suffer. By your logic, there should be no unemployment benefits for ANYONE because of the minority who abuse the system. This is just a consequence of capitalism, folks.

"... the Seattle Times relentless effort to whip up a frenzy of hate on government employees against a backdrop of "unemployed people scrambling to keep a roof over their heads," comes off as overwrought, insincere, and counterproductive. And their choice of words only reinforces the sense that what the editors really want is for state employees to join their non-unionized brethren in a vicious race toward the bottom:"

Is the Seattle Times suggesting the state follow in the footsteps of WalMart and other megacorporations who make billions of dollars off the backs of middle and lower-class taxpayers, as well as their employees (especially here in Washington, where we have a spectacularly regressive tax system)?

This crisis IS NOT THE FAULT OF WORKING PEOPLE as the media would have you believe. People in good jobs, many of which are union, should be the rule, not the exception. And if there were mandates for ALL companies to pay their fair share to their workers and their communities, we wouldn't have this problem. As always, Goldy is so right on.

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