Don't Mess With Success...
Critique By Punkerslut
[Published in a column titled "Class Struggle," by Jay Mathews, Washington Post, June 29, 2009.]
Sometime last year, while negotiating a teacher contract for the KIPP Ujima Village charter middle school in Baltimore, founder Jason Botel pointed out that his students, mostly from low- income families, had earned the city's highest public school test scores three years in a row. If the union insisted on increasing overtime pay, he said, the school could not afford the extra instruction time that was a key to its success, and student achievement would suffer.
Botel says a union official replied: "That's not our problem."
Such stories heat the blood of union critics. It is, they contend, a sign of how unions dumb down public education by focusing on salaries, not learning. [...]
The article continues here:
[Response by Punkerslut.]
By all means, Jay Matthews, feel free to pick up an economics book.
You are complaining about the teachers of this country fighting for themselves and their students. Ultimately, the higher wages means that the children are going to grow up in a social environment that better rewards labor. It is the most important lesson of all, and you want the teachers to be submissive, obedient little creatures of the state. Here's an idea: get rid of all the wasteful military bases on third world countries. Wait, what's that? You own stock in companies that are exploiting and oppressing those third world nations? You own stock from Bechtel, Halliburton, and others who live off of corporate subsidies? Well, it looks like you don't mind pulling in 40 million dollars for an annual salary, most of it paid by taxpayers. (Houston Chronicle, Robert M. Delvin, of the American General Corporation.)
So, the wealthy class receives millions of dollars from taxpayers, but now you complain about teachers asking for $0.45 more per hour? Sounds like you want to complain about unions, but you're taking more out of the public commonwealth than they are. Their wages pay for them to live; taxes that pay for military dictatorships in third worlds makes you millions.
Adam Smith was right on the mark when talking about the evils of the Capitalist class: "They say nothing concerning the bad effects of high profits."
After you've read some elementary literature in economics, by all means, I'm interested in a debate on this very much.
[The dignified Jay Mathews has not responded to either e-mails or posts I have made in comment to his article.]