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Letter: How about pension thief mascot?

Published: Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

To the Editor:

I have a couple of bones to pick with you regarding your Nov. 4 editorial, “Scaredy-cat new symbol for lawmakers”:

First of all, I would like to have a name attached to these “Our View” pieces. Who wrote it? Do the “Our View” editorials reflect the opinions of every person working for the Daily Chronicle? If I were to send you this letter titled “My View” with no signature it would not be considered for publication. Fair enough, so please tell us readers who expresses “Your View.”

What I’m really writing to you about is my reaction to your view regarding the state pension “crisis.” Our lawmakers have done an incredible job of spinning the public’s perception of the situation. How about instead of calling this horrible financial calamity a “pension crisis” we call it the “pension theft” it really is? 

Had our lawmakers kept their end of the bargain year after year for the past three decades and funded the pension system annually as they were required to do according to their written legislation, the state pension system would not be in the toilet. Our elected officials have chosen to divert funds from the pension system to heaven knows where.

Honestly, as a retired teacher I resent living in the shadow of “pension reform.” Year after year for over three decades I made my contribution to my pension system. I didn’t have a choice. My paychecks had a mandated deduction which was determined by our lawmakers. 

The state of Illinois has failed miserably at keeping its end of the bargain. Yet now, retirees are portrayed as the cause of the problem.

How about instead of “Squeezy the Pension Python” we embrace “Shifty the Pension Thief” as our pension reform mascot?

Tim O’Shaughnessy

Sycamore

Note to readers: “Our View” is the expressed opinion of the Daily Chronicle. The Daily Chronicle editorial board members’ names appear daily at the bottom of the Opinions page. They are Eric Olson, Jillian Duchnowski, Dana Herra, Inger Koch and Karen Pletsch. 

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