Re "Detroit's financial crisis: Bankruptcy and public pensions" (Forum, Dec. 8): Unions like SEIU exist for pay and benefits, and they minimize accountability. Asking them to agree to benefit cuts is like negotiating with a 2-year-old on whether to ration out the Halloween candy he can eat. Unions cannot comprehend that taxpayer monies are a precious resource, and that work can be done efficiently without maximizing labor costs to taxpayers. Detroit, Vallejo and Stockton are just the tip of the iceberg. Illinois is not far behind, and neither is Chicago. Besides, in union negotiations, neither side is looking out for taxpayers' interests. Management is also unionized, so managers know they can grant the rank-and-file unions the kitchen sink, and then negotiate an even better sweetheart deal for themselves. Only in an Alice-in-Wonderland world does this makes sense. Impose benefit cuts on public sector workers now. Do not negotiate with them.
-- Satish Rajan, Roseville