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Congressman Bob Filner doesn’t want the City of San Diego to turn into another “roach-infested hellhole,” like Walter Reed Army Medical Center, the 5500-room Washington, D.C., military hospital exposed for its deteriorating conditions and tangled bureaucracy. Filner thinks that’s exactly what will happen if Mayor Jerry Sanders is successful in implementing his policy of “managed competition,” referring to the 2006 ballot measure that allows outside corporations the opportunity to bid on city programs.

“The most fallacious argument by privatization proponents is that public-private competitions generate ‘savings’ -- hypothetically 10 to 30 percent reductions in future budgets,” reads Filner’s press release. “In truth, audits by the independent Government Accountability Office show that these competitions cost more than they save. On average, they cost American taxpayers $225 million, or about $4,800 per job put out to bid.”

Filner entitled his press release “The Failed ‘Managed Competition’ Experiment.” In it, the congressman used federal studies from places such as Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Miramar Marine Corps Air Station, and the proposal signed into law by President Obama that placed a moratorium on competition between city departments and private corporations.

“The federal experience should serve as a wake-up call for cities like San Diego that may be exploring costly and risky ‘managed competition’ processes,” concludes Filner’s press release. “There are much better ways to achieve efficiencies for the greater good.”

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PistolPete Oct. 20, 2009 @ 10:13 p.m.

LMAO! Unions are so bad for business it ain't funny. Take the UFCW for example. Do grocery baggers REALLY need a union? Those poor overworked souls making up to $25 an hour on holidays...Unions have killed themselves by greed and mismanagement. I agree that certain professions need unions but it's gotten ridiculous.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 20, 2009 @ 10:50 p.m.

Grocery baggers make close to minimum wage today. They made double minimum wage 25 years ago, when I was a checker at Safeway.

I was on another topic where I was talking about UPS loaders-which I did 25 years ago in 1984 during Christmas-the pay was $9.54 an hour .....IN 1984!

Today that exact same job PAYS JUST $8.50 an hour.

Think about that real hard. The exact same job paid 15% MORE a quarter of a century ago.

I have no problem with union in the free market-where the wages are driven by the market-but you cannot have unions in the public sector-where the free market does not apply, and the elected officals (which are given money to get elected by the public unions) do NOT negotiate the public union contracts at arms length.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 20, 2009 @ 10:54 p.m.

“The federal experience should serve as a wake-up call for cities like San Diego that may be exploring costly and risky ‘managed competition’ processes,” concludes Filner’s press release. “There are much better ways to achieve efficiencies for the greater good.”

This is the very reason this City (and county, state and country) are bankrupt today.

By allowing gov employees to make, on average, twice what the private sector employee makes.

Median federal employee makes $120K per year with benefits-the median private sector employee makes 59K per year with benefits.

Tell Bob Filner to put that in his pipe and smoke it.

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David Dodd Oct. 20, 2009 @ 11:04 p.m.

Grocery baggers in Mexico work for tips. I usually give about thirty to fifty cents every visit, and I reckon most others give the same. I figure that a bagger, under such circumstances, could make anywhere between twenty and forty dollars per day here if they wanted to work that hard. I'm not suggesting that the U.S. embrace the same system, but if the average shopper in the U.S. left a dollar tip, there would be no need for a union.

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PistolPete Oct. 20, 2009 @ 11:24 p.m.

Bingo refried. Part of the reason food costs are skyrocketing at an alarming rate is because of unnecessary unions.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 21, 2009 @ 7:54 a.m.

Part of the reason food costs are skyrocketing at an alarming rate is because of unnecessary unions.

By PistolPete

Food prices have been going down for months now.

They are not "skyrocketing". Who told you that lie Pete?

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JF Oct. 21, 2009 @ 8:59 a.m.

elected officals do NOT negotiate the public union contracts at arms length.

Really? Then why does the city pay lawyers from LA $500K to perform it's negotiations? Aren't there lawyers here that could do that? Up until the final vote, negotiations here are about as far separated from politicians as possible.

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PistolPete Oct. 21, 2009 @ 9:46 a.m.

SP,food prices are back down to 2006 levels. My point about the unions was:How the hell did they get so high to beging with? Rising fuel costs are only a fraction of the problem seeing as we had overinflated fuel costs for roughly four months and that was almost sixteen months ago.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 21, 2009 @ 12:19 p.m.

Really? Then why does the city pay lawyers from LA $500K to perform it's negotiations? Aren't there lawyers here that could do that? Up until the final vote, negotiations here are about as far separated from politicians as possible.

By JF

JF, the City Clowncil approves ALL city contracts-not "$500K" lawyers. Another one of your bogus comments.

BTW-Please provide proof that the City pays half a million to "LA Lawyers" to negotiate unions contracts.

The funny thing is whenever someone blows your scam out of the water-like when elected officials take kick backs/bribes/campaign money from public unions in a quid pro quo for raising pay and benefits- you have some wild, totally unrelated nonsensical comment-why is that?

You have a GED level job (FF), that encopmpasses holding a hose while water come out the end, but get paid $200K per year, so you're not fooling anyone with your comments.

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SDaniels Oct. 21, 2009 @ 6:36 p.m.

"that encopmpasses holding a hose while water come out the end..."

Sure it has to be held for this? :)

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 21, 2009 @ 7:59 p.m.

Come on SD, FF is a job 90% of the population could do.

The only educational requirement is a GED. They have 1,000 applicants for every single job opening-so why the hell are we paying them (with benefits) $200K per year???????? They are getting compensated in the top 5% in the nation.

Why not put these jobs out to bid????

I bet we could fill these jobs with BETTER people than the ones being hired by gov right now, for 1/3 the cost.

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JF Oct. 28, 2009 @ 9:24 a.m.

BTW-Please provide proof that the City pays half a million to "LA Lawyers" to negotiate unions contracts.

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2008/dec/04/negotiating-labor-negotiators/?neighborhood-news

"Among the concessions made, the lawyers will receive no more than $400,000 dollars for their mediation services, down from an original proposal of $500,000. In addition, the lawyers also agreed to waive all billable fees associated with travel time from their Los Angeles headquarters."

My mistake, the fees were reduced from $500K to $400K.

Gee, SurfPuppy, one of the commentators on that article was a guy named Johnny Vegas. Know him? Oh wait... that's you. You read and commented on the article, and yet you still have to deny it ever happened.

Sooner or later, you'll figure out that I actually do know what I'm talking about and can back up anything I post.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 28, 2009 @ 11:51 a.m.

Incoming City Attorney, Jan Goldsmith, praised Kay’s 40 years worth of experience during comments to the city council, despite Kay’s failed negotiation attempt during the 2005 labor talks.

Once again, JF makes another bogus comment.

They may have hired these clowns to "negotiate", but the council is the last, and final, word on all city contracts. So the "negotiations" are meaningless because the council are the ones who make the deal, as happened in 2005. See above.

In addition, the council gives the lawyers limits on terms and conditions, so these lawyers are not really negotiators at all, but more or less just middle men/buffers.

I have to wonder why they bring in an outside law firm though. The City Attorney should be doing all of this in house.

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JF Oct. 29, 2009 @ 6:35 a.m.

Wrong again, Johnny. We have a strong mayor now. The mayor gives the terms, the lawyers negotiate it and, as I clearly wrote earlier, the city the city council has the final vote.

Why is it that whenever you try to call me out on something I prove you wrong?

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 29, 2009 @ 12:07 p.m.

Wrong again JF, the Mayor may give some parameters, but the lawyers do not negotiate-because they lack the ultimate power to do the deal, and instead take their direction straight from the Mayor and Clowncil.

So your baloney claim that "$500,000" lawyers negotiate contracts is pure nonsense.

Why do I have to keep spanking you in public?

Oh, because you still think you're entitled to rip off the taxpayers with your scams, my bad.

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JF Oct. 29, 2009 @ 6:44 p.m.

And so the mayor hires the firm why? Just to spend $400K?

Oh wait... let me quote the first line from the above listed article.

"On December 1st, San Diego City Councilmembers voted 6 to 1 in favor of hiring two lawyers from the law firm of Burke, Williams and Sorenson as LEAD NEGOTIATORS for fiscal year 2010 city employee labor negotiation talks." Caps mine.

You're obviously wrong, Johnny and you're being a troll. Stop it.

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SurfPuppy619 Oct. 29, 2009 @ 6:51 p.m.

Because KFC Sanders is an idiot, or to cover his butt-I am nto them, so i can't tell you why.

Again, you can call these clown lawyers whatever you want, but they are NOT the ones doing the deals, or even laying the foundation for the deals. That authority rests with ONLY the elected officials.

Now stop trying to act like you're the one who has all the answers-we already know you don't. In fact since you still think you're entitled to 3%@50 (with all your now discreditied reasons) this pretty much proves you are not living in reality.

I hope you retire soon JF and you get at least a few pension payments, because when SD files BK your pension Cadillac pension is going bye bye. Can you say "Hello Yugo Pension Plan"?

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