Saturday, March 5, 2011

Biting the Hand that Serves Him

Rick Snyder has apparently thought better about criticizing Michigan state employees as over-paid sloths who don't deserve their salaries.

Snyder has sent a letter to state employees more or less apologizing for the study he recently released which used distorted figures to claim that state employees are paid more than people in the private sector. Snyder, of course, cooked the books to come to that conclusion. He failed to take into account levels of education in making the comparison so that medical doctors were compared with burger-flippers.

Now that his phony comparison has been found out, Snyder promptly blamed the news media for making state employees look bad. According to the Lansing State Journal, Snyder wrote:

"I presented data on total compensation (salary, wages, pension benefits and health insurance benefits) because my point was not to make an apples-to-apples jobs comparison but instead take a look at how total public compensation compares to the total compensation of the working public that supports government… Unfortunately, the compensation story took on a life of its own in the media, diverting attention away from the real issues. You should hear my position directly, as opposed to the media reports and representations."

He didn't say what the "real issues" are, but presumably it has something to do with the $180 million in concessions he wants from state workers.

Snyder went on to try to make nice with public employees after slapping them in the face, telling them he thought they worked hard and:

"It is inspiring that so many of our colleagues take pride in their work, meet ambitious deadlines and understand that no matter what level of job they have, they try to make a difference in the lives of our citizens each day."

Translation: Snyder figured out that he needs state employees. Governors come and go, but state employees remain. They are the ones who deal with the public and do the work. If they perform poorly, it reflects on Snyder ultimately so it's not a good idea to bite the hand that serves you.

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