Wednesday, May 6, 2020

This Is No Time To Bail Out Already Failing Union Pension Funds

Amid the endless, wearying news cycles about the coronavirus, one fact of life has been strikingly consistent with ordinary times: Every imaginable group with a long-standing financial or ideological interest wants to use the pandemic as an excuse to highlight or advance that interest.
Special interests have been pushing arguments supporting or opposing mergers, praising or vilifying pharmacy benefit managers, supporting price supports for ethanol or oil, and advocating for complicated, obscure positions on patent law. Liberal groups, laughably, have been arguing for pausing the confirmation of President Trump's judicial nominees "until the shock of the pandemic has been diminished." Everybody is trying to use the coronavirus as an excuse for whatever special-interest provision they always wanted previously.
The coronavirus is the new excuse for bailing out the Post Office, as Democrats were trying to do long before the virus struck. It has also become the latest excuse for the bailout of Illinois — the Deadbeat State, which has been seeking out a bailout for the better part of a decade.
It isn’t always about money, either. Even as the coronavirus fells socialized healthcare systems throughout Europe at rates far worse than the United States, it has inexplicably become the latest argument for "Medicare for all." It is the new excuse for universal basic income.
And for some people, the coronavirus is just an opportunity to score cheap political points. For example, we do not believe for even one second that Nancy Pelosi actually opposes the repatriation of Americans in China — her stated reason for attacking Trump’s early handling of the crisis. We are certain that, in any other circumstance, she would vigorously denounce such a position as illegal and racist. Anthropologists will likely look back and conclude that the virus had a strange effect on people’s behavior.
Another bad idea now getting a second wind thanks to the plague is a bailout of private, union-controlled pension funds. Democrats have been pushing this idea for decades. Now, they are pushing it again, hoping to exploit the fact that the nation is in crisis.
But if ever there were a bad time to bail out pensions, this is it.
Read this Washington Examiner editorial HERE.

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