It is peculiar to examine how a local government like Scranton determine success. The reason I say this is because if a private company ever went public and said that they are doing better because they are losing less money, their stock would plummet. Of course, local governments like Scranton’s do not have a stock symbol. They do have a rating for their bond which happens to be below junk status. Thus, it comes with surprise when Scranton Mayor Mr. Courtight talks about the “progress” the pensions have made since the last time the State Auditor General audited the pensions. “Progress” according to the Mayor is a slow bleed that has the city dying until the whole things goes up in an explosion. I wonder what the criterion is for an improvement in the city’s fiscal crisis. Has the city found new means of generating revenue besides selling off public assets? Does that count for improvements in Pennsylvania? Come again?
Progress In Scranton
What progress has been made concerning the pensions funds? Are the people of Scranton really to believe that the compensation packages that were made to cause this pension crisis fair in the first place? Are the people of Scranton supposed to believe that the city does not operate solely for the politically connected? 50% of police retirees are on disability. 58% of firemen retirees are on disability. Countless officers and firemen make 100k and get lifetime pensions. The city is in tatters and the only thing the mayor is concerned about is the 2% of the population that make up uniform personnel! What about jobs! What about productivity? This sort of lack of vision and incompetence could only take place in government. In the real world, results happen to matter. You cannot go to a board of investors and claim that you lost their money but you are working on getting it back. The people of Scranton obtain little comfort when their failing city shows zero prospects of improving. Property values are at an all time low. Businesses continue to be boarded up. In what world does this look like a picture of improvement?
What the city of Scranton needs is good ideas. It needs people who actually have talent and are not in power because they kissed the right behind or made the right favors. In a world where 24-year-old can preside over billion dollar companies, the notion that the people running the government of Scranton cannot come up with any viable solutions is pathetic. Do they have any sense of the world we live in? We live in 2016 but the Scranton government has little conception of the many opportunities that exist in this country through technology and innovation. Opportunities that could create jobs, encourage growth and cut down on taxes or waste. The city is being run like it exists in some time warp where it is perpetually 2002. There are countless ideas that can be employed to make this city progressive, but of course that is hard to implement when the people in charge are completely oblivious to current economic trends. The only reason the government of Scranton gets away with this is because the people of Scranton are so used to this lackluster performance. They are so used to incompetence and lack of vision coming from the halls of their local government that when the Scranton government fails just a little less it is viewed as a vast improvement. Seriously, the Scranton people deserve better! No one should live this way!