To my angered Legislators:

Feb 2012
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“Many lawmakers – mostly Republicans – were fuming mad Tuesday over an online campaign that had teachers and other public employees and retirees ringing their phones and filling their email in boxes with complaints over a vote they took last week.” – this was the opening paragraph of today’s local fish wrapper.

Fuming mad? It’s your CONSTITUENTS who should be fuming mad. And even if your constituents – the ones who VOTED you into office – tied up your precious phone lines and emails with complaints and comments – and YOU had to “spend hours” reassuring them YOU are not out to cut retiree benefits – isn’t that part of your job description? Silly me…I thought it was. And unless I’ve been misinformed over the past 60 years, this is still America, and we – it’s citizens – can still voice our complaints on the soapbox of our choice. Fuming mad…indeed!

Here’s a few thoughts and comments concerning those august Legislators who were quoted in today’s article:

  1. Rep. Richard Bennett – You stated: “This is a partisan group putting out misinformation…” What partisan group? What misinformation? Care to elaborate on both? Inquiring minds (mine in particular) want to know. You also stated the Legislature is not “going to do anything with PERS this year…” THIS year? What the other three remaining in your tenure of office?
  2. Rep. David Baria – Thank you. But you do understand why State Employees and Retirees – past and future – look at the Sunshine Act with a jaundiced eye, as the old-timers say? Was it not revealed that Mr. Barbour’s PERS overhaul committee stated their lawyers had found a way around the PERS Retirement System? And as today’s fish wrapper stated: “if the agency (PERS) wanted to cut benefits, the agency would simply go hire a lawyer that agreed with them.” If this is not correct, PLEASE address this falsehood.
  3. Rep. Timmy Ladner – I’m sorry you received 60 to 80 emails…nasty form emails at that. You should let your constituency know, from now on, slews of form emails simply won’t be tolerated.
  4. Rep. Jeffrey Guice – “he (you) doesn’t believe lawmakers – at lease those from South Mississippi – are going to take any stance to take away any earned benefits…” Let me thank you for that – but – what about the other gaggle of Legislators from the other counties? Will you lead the charge against them should they “turn” against State Employees, voting to cut benefits? I’ll be your drummer boy if you do.
  5. Rep. Scott DeLano – “Who is this? Who do you respond to?….” Well, dear sir, why not join Honor Your Promise on Facebook. And if you do, you can respond and “deal with this type of new media…” I look forward to your future comments on that group’s site.
  6. Rep. Bobby Moak – I guess the old adage is true: “What goes ’round, comes ’round.” It’s the Republicans who are currently “weeping and wailing and gnashing” their teeth; it will be you Democrats when your back in power. Some things just never change. Your stated “Baria’s amendment, thought not a direct vote on PERS benefits, would have provided some protection to major changes in the direction for the agency.” Major changes? In the direction of the agency?

And therein Bill Shakespeare lies the rub. WHAT major changes? And you, and the other boys and girls in the Legislature, wonder why State Employees and Retirees are just a wee bit queasy when it comes to our retirement pay and 13th check? So – said all that to say this – if you folks have issues with Honor Your Promise and the “false and misleading information” spewed out by this group, put it in writing. Have a town hall meeting. Say it on the telly or the wireless. But by all means SAY IT. And if you do, perhaps your won’t be bothered by those nasty emails and bothersome phone calls. You have a bully pulpit! We – State Employees and Retirees – have no voice! None… other than the likes of Honor Your Promise.

Thanking you in advance for you consideration in this matter, Anthony Kalberg (A tax payer who votes.)

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