The Democratic Socialists Tell Lies and Half Truths About Lobbyists

The July 30, 2019 debate with Democratic candidates for president covered little ground. Much of the discussion centered around healthcare in which the two leading contenders – Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) – were calling out the terrible role that pharmaceutical and insurance companies play in the ecosystem of healthcare. Each took a turn to slam the amount of money the industries spend on lobbyists.


Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren

Sanders said that the pharma and insurance industries spent $4.5 billion on lobbyists last year. He was wrong. They spent a total of $441 million according to OpenSecrets.org, off by a factor of ten times.

Put that aside.

Sanders asked all of the Democrats running for office to pledge that they would not take any money from these two industry groups, as it put them in direct conflict in being able to negotiate healthcare honestly and effectively after these groups paid their way into office.

However, what was not discussed is the much more toxic money that public sector UNIONS pay into elections. These are groups that are sitting directly across the table from elected officials in negotiating their salaries and benefits. The union lobbying dollars are blessed bribes. Graft. It is a direct conflict of interest worthy of banana republics.

But the Sanders/Warren camp won’t discuss the poison, because they contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to Democrats. The socialist psychos would rather paint the entire lobbying fight of mega multi-national corporations squashing the poor little guy.

Here are some union lobbying figures for 2018:

Carpenters and Joiners Union $41.5 million
Service Employers International Union $41.5 million
Laborers Union $31.5 million
American Federation of Teachers $31.1 million
American Federation of State/County/Muni Employees $14.1 million

That’s $160 million just from these five unions, of which 99% went to Democrats.

By way of comparison, here are top multi-national corporations payouts for lobbyists:

Bloomberg $95.9 million (100% for Democrats)
Las Vegas Sands $62.4 million (100% for Republicans)
Microsoft $14.1 million (87% Democrats)
Amazon $13.6 million (69% Democrats)
Koch Industries $12.1 million (99% Republican)

Sanders called out the Koch brothers, and in the past he has slammed Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas Sands owner. Those two are the epitome of the bad billionaires for the socialists, presumably because they are top givers to the Republicans.

Somehow, they neglect to mention the lobbying money of “Fahr LLC” which gave a whopping $73.1 million in 2018 – all to Democrats. Fahr is the middle name of Tom Steyer, a billionaire Democrat who is spending tens of millions of dollars lobbying people in congress to fight climate change and to impeach Donald Trump.

The leading liberals talk about the evils of lobbying money – but very, very selectively. They pretend to be more ethical in talking about the corruption of lobbying dollars, but only for those contributing to Republicans.

There is nothing more pernicious that allowing government unions to contribute money into elections, and it happens at the federal, state, county and local levels every day.

In New York, “government unions collectively spent more on lobbying last year [2017] than the state’s biggest trial lawyers, landlord, tobacco and hospital interests combined. And topping the list, as usual, was New York’s powerful conglomerate of public education unions.” Would it surprise you that New York is a deep blue (Democratic) state?

While I admire the socialist twin’s calls to stay away from pharma lobbyist money, I consider their voices vacuous unless there are louder calls to stop the most sinister lobbying in the country: from public sector unions.


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New York Times Reprints Union Manifesto

The Los Angeles Teacher’s Union went on strike, abandoning roughly 600,000 students. The 30,000 public school teachers want many things, the primary one of which is more money. You’d be hard pressed to learn about how much money they make today, their pension and healthcare benefits and vacation perks from the New York Times.

The NY Times front page January 18, 2019 article focused on the plight of the students. The article conveyed how poor students have no place to go while rich students did while school was out. It described a California tax system that favored rich neighborhoods over poor ones. It described how California public schools often had over 40 students per grade while most urban public schools had between 16 and 28 (curious math when 600,000 students serviced by 30,000 teachers implies an average of 20 students per teacher). The article reviewed how charter schools hurt the public schools.

In other words, the paper published a sad story about the students without shedding light on what teachers in California earn. One would imagine that an actual NEWSpaper which is (theoretically) meant to educate readers would supply some basic information about the REASON FOR THE STRIKE. Instead, the liberal rag opted to make it sound like the teachers are striking for the benefit of the students.

Here is some data from the California Department of Education:

  • For elementary schools, the mid-range average salary for a teacher in a middle-sized school is $75,417. For a large school, the average teacher makes $80,256
  • For high schools, the mid-range average salary for a teacher in a middle-sized school is $80,177. For a large school, the average teacher makes $86,127
  • Overall, the average salary of public school teachers in 201617 in the State of California was $79,128
  • California public school teachers don’t pay social security tax – they aren’t a part of the country-wide system of support for seniors. Instead, they have their own pension system. The pension allows people to begin withdrawing money without penalty at age 60 or 62 – five years before the rest of the country gets any social security benefits. Further, the system doesn’t pay out anemic monies to seniors – the annual payout often exceeds the annual salary the teachers earned for the rest of their lives. (In case you’re wondering how such a system can work with such generous payments and little teacher pay-in – it can’t. It’s supported by taxes).
  • Health benefits for California teachers are among the best in the country.
  • While most Americans work at least 245 days per year, school teachers in California work only 180 days, 26% less.
  • Did we mention job security? While most Americans are worried about losing their jobs or their employer failing, teachers in California have almost a guaranteed job for life.

The average teacher in California makes 52% more than the average person (average CA salary is $51,910), has a more generous pension and works significantly fewer hours than the rest of the people in the state.

But the NY Times opted to not educate its readers. Instead, it opted to be the public mouthpiece of union labor, pretending the strike is about the welfare of children rather than the pockets of union members. Another edition of #AlternativeFacts


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