The exception are the EX (executive classification) types who do have high compensation (start at $100K) and have at-risk pay; however, they are the top managers (a step below the deputy ministers) and are not unionized. They are certainly not representative of rank-and-file, or middle-managers. Their duties (considering that they manage a governmental department) are probably more akin to a CEO.
The public sector is not the only one to gouge the tax payers, as many private companies will do the same when given the opportunity. While the e-Health portfolio was very mismanaged to say the least, the consultants were happy to cash the checks and provide no return.
Anyway, to get back more on topic, the way I see it is that when starting out on the career, people will look at the government job with pension, and then look at a private sector job with higher pay and pick the private sector job. For example, in some trades (HVAC, refrigeration) the federal government can not attract anyone because the private sector job pay is much higher. It was an issue for the computer type positions as well, which is why their government salaries are fairly high to compete with the private sector. Now, ten or twenty years down the road, when the workers start thinking about retirement and look at the federal DB pension against what they saved via RRSP, they may start to grouse and complain about the gold-plated pensions, but they made their decision.