The past several decades, Americans have seen the disaster unionism has wrought on Detroit's Big Three. The auto-makers, saddled with powerful unions, fell victim to a combination of labor inefficiency and premium worker pay that proved unsustainable.
And while much of the rest of the private sector long ago realized the sots, government apparently has not. So, for the first time in history, public employees comprise the largest segment of unions today.
Save for New Jersey or New York, the pending public pension crisis is nowhere more evident than in California. Currently the state is on the hook for $100-300 billion in unfunded pension and health care liabilities with no end in sight - on top of a projected $25 billion budget deficit.
In a sympathetic story, reporter Russ Buettner relayed the plight of local property owners fighting abuse of eminent domain -- the taking of private property for public use -- by local governments. Such "takings" were made infamous by Kelo vs. New London, the controversial 2005 Supreme Court decision which found that the city of New London, Conn., was within its rights to condemn private property and hand it to a development corporation under the control of the city government, a decision that enraged left and right alike.