Education in in a "State of Emergency"
Education, Education, Education. This week – schools are public issue number one as teachers – students – and parents are holding demonstrations from New York to California to protest cuts to education budgets. In what they are calling a weeklong “state of emergency” – the California Teachers Association is holding a sit-in at their state capital in response to Governor Jerry Brown’s proposed $7 billion cut to education.
In the last three years – the state has seen its education budget whittled down by $20 billion and more than 30,000 teachers laid off – now the teachers union is saying, “enough is enough.” Also – inspired by activist teachers in Wisconsin – New York City teachers are holding a march this week in opposition to Mayor Bloomberg’s proposed cuts to education that will lay off thousands of educators. Tens of thousands of people are expected to join in the march from City Hall to Wall Street to demand that banksters – and not teachers – pay up for what they did to the economy.
Has our morality decayed so much that we rejoice banksters on Wall Street making hundreds of million in bonuses – yet yell and scream about teachers earning a meager 50K?
Re: The Rule of Law
People may say bin Laden did not deserve a trial because of the atrocity that happened on 9-11. Yet, we did have trials for the Nazis who killed the Jews.
9-11 has changed us a country, we now have warrantless wiretapping, the Department of Homeland Security, TSA Strip searches, three wars, Guantanamo, torture and expanded powers granted to the president. Are we in danger of loosing the values that set us apart? Where does it all end?
Tom, Can you interview Chris Hedges regarding his new book?
The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress by Chris Hedges
Amen DRichards! Chris Hedges should be on Atleast once a month! My father (a Presbyterian Minister) say's that Hedges is a once-in-a-generation Prophet.
Also, do we have Habeas corpus again? If so, why is Bradley Manning still being held without trial?
RE: The Rule of Law
Remember the relentlessly overplayed TV commercial during the last administration bragging that Chevy broke all the rules and now they're rewriting them. Criminals always brag about their "kill".
DRichards for that matter, Thom needs to read Chris Hedges' last book "Death of The Liberal Class" I bet it will give Thom a paradigm shift.
Many liberals are disappointed with Barack Obama. Some talk of “betrayal,” while others are writing abject letters to the White House asking the president to come back to his “true self.” Chris Hedges, however, is a progressive who doesn’t feel betrayed. “Obama was and is a brand,” he argues. “He is a product of the Chicago political machine. He has been skillfully packaged by the corporate state.”
Product description of Chris's new book "The World as It Is".
RE: The War On Teachers
It's so disappointing that the dems are on the same bandwagon of destroying our public education system as the repubs. The only difference is that the repubs are brazenly outspoken about it once they are elected and the dems are doing it under the covers.
Louise, Thanks for the links regarding the Chris Hedges "Death of the Liberal Class interview.
In college I had two or three classes in Anthropology. It was probably three classes - Introduction to Anthropology, Physical Anthropology, and Cultural Anthropology. Anthropology is a fascinating discipline to study. We brought from Europe diseases, the lust for killing God’s children, our morality or immorality, and all that was rotten in Europe. Europeans are an evil and sinful breed.
The official statement!
When we want or wish harm or injury to a human being, we are breaking the Fifth Commandment. We are committing a mortal sin that damns the human soul. Maybe that is why I keep saying, "The Anti-Christ is a damned nation."
There is a saying, "opposites attract." Maybe it is true but these opposites are ending a 25 year marriage.
Is Schwarzenegger better known as The Gropernator?
Give a kid a fish? He will have food for a day.
Teach a kid to fish he will have food for life!
Seems to me they just want to starve us out of oppertunity.
I mean really, by the time i was in ninth grade I could design and build, I could bake a cake! I learned that men are suppose to open the door for women! lol I could wash my own laundry change a tire on a car! Oh yeah, I could read and write too! and even do some "basic" math?
I knew right from wrong? I could fill out a job application and type.
seriously though? Kids today? Hell most of them can't even read a ruler!
That my good people is the saddest.
As a victim of retail management for more then 20 years I have seen the decay first hand year after year as part time christmas help would come in to fill out applications. Half of them can't read and half of them can't write and worst yet? Most of them can't even articulate the simplest, logical answers to now prefab interview questions.
Just where did we go wrong?
Where did the core go and why.
Is it the pay? I'd say so, I'd have a hell of time trying to work in a school on paupers wages knowing that at any moment some parent might try to get me fired because i excercised some firmness with their other wise ill mannered child. I can't even phathom the amount of strees teachers have to deal with.
I gave up volunteer work all because of that. I'd see a kid out of line on the playground ,call him down on it and sure as Bob's your uncle he'd go cryin' to his mommy. "that mean man" and yet in my art classes the kids knew full well when your in my room you respect the teacher and myself or hit the road.
Funny I ran into one of those kids a few days ago. I couldn't tell who he was but he sure remembered what a great teaching experience he had in my art class.
Sad where we have arrived. A society nil and void of ...uh, hmm..what do I remember from my youth?
oh...thats it unity and community!
Stand up and stop the PIGS. The GOP is enabling the capitalists to rob us blind. Get a handle on this, or be responsible for the death of the American middle class! Education is the number one place to steal away the working classes window to the American Dream. All the Corporationists want is slave!
"...banksters – and not teachers – pay up for what they did to the economy." ...right on, Thom Hartmann!! banksters--and not retirees; banksters--and not the laid off; banksters--and not those who lost their homes. I saw one sign carried by a protesting teacher that said "Silent Revolution works". Demonstrating in the streets is one thing but it has to be in every city and town and it has to be so continuous that it drastically disrupts business as usual. It will have to get so bad that Obama is left with a decision to send out the helicopter gunships to restore order.
I'm glad that Maria finally dumped her groping hubby. I never liked the gropenator nor did he ever do California any good. But Jerry Brown is well known to practice what he preaches...not that I know him all that well...he is known to be quite an ascetic...but Ronald Reagan was once known as quite a progressive till his mental condition began to set in or was used as a "economic Manchurian candidate"? ...perhaps injected with some mind-bending exotic neuro-toxin from his wife's rich and famous neurosurgeon father? And Obama was once thought to be on the side of the people until he drank the neoliberal cool-aid. But then he was probably just acting that way to get elected. His foot in the door to power and riches as he sucks on the tit of the sinister right wing sow leaving everyone else to starve and die the lowly peons that they are. He got his..now eveyone else can just go to hell. He climbed the ladder of exploitation with his smooth-talking promises and after showing us his gratitude by constantly destroying our country he wants us to vote for him yet again? Nothing will change until voters make it very clear to these political tricksters that they will not vote for them again. "no other choice" is a scare tactic that needs to be abolished.
"...we can expect the next Republican or Democratic administration to step in and “save” the country from economic emergency by scaling back Social Security while turning its funding over, Pinochet-style, to Wall Street money managers to loot as they did in Chile."
Julian Assange of Wikileaks wins the Sydney Peace Prize.
Photo of him wearing the gold medal here:
When the US, again, violated Pakistani sovereignty, and went in to get OBL (now a martyr), and again murdering many civilians in their wake...maybe it wasn't such a good idea...it just further infuriated some very radical groups that have their hands on nukes:
"The head of Pakistan's army disagrees with President Asif Ali Zardari's rule to never initiate a nuclear first strike against another nation, the Press Trust of India reported on Friday quoted leaked U.S. diplomatic dispatches as saying."
"Despite increasing financial constraints, we believe that the military is proceeding with an expansion of both its growing strategic weapons and missiles," then-U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan Anne Patterson wrote ahead of Kayani's February 2009 trip to Washington.
"The potential for a Pakistani nuclear weapons insider to incrementally steal key atomic ingredients or for rogue actors to target nuclear weapons as they are transferred worried the United States more than the possibility of an extremist pilfering a bomb in a single act, the records indicate."
What are CEOs and Teachers worth? Truck drivers often make more than high school teachers. But teachers are so instrumental in the forming of America generation after generation. They have our children in a structured inviroment from the time they are small. Teaching them, influencing them. We had better have a qualified person there at the wheel. They have a great deal to do with what America is becoming don't kid yourself.
Looking at what it takes to live I think teachers should be making $75,000 a year after their first year on the job. Teachers should have a highly respected place in society, but they are looked down on by many.
CEO's in most cases are dirt. I had a neighbor that bought and lived in a house across the street from me last year. He fixed it up inside and out. Replaced tons of sheet rock, new plumbing, new electrical, new roof. Amazing work that he and his son did.
Well when I first got to know him he told me his biggest regret. He said he once was a CEO of a big corporation. He told me in his own words, "I was worse than the devil", "I was worse than a murderer". WOW.
I know one thing for sure, when you fire someone or constantly put pressure on an employee usually needlessly you take away their security. You hurt them physically and take years off their life. This is murder. Is this what Americans are aspiring to, to get a good high paying job so they can murder others?
This neighbor I had for a short time had changed. He was a good person when I knew him. I wish I could say the same for all CEOs. Teachers, many of them really care about people and America. Many CEOs care about themselves and their bank account. Yes, they are so often over paid and what they do to others they should be put into prison for several years for, that is if there was any justice.
Something that needs to stop in America is the "Hiring and Firing for Profit". This was the title of a book that was written in the early 70s. Most all companies anymore use fear motivation. Fear motivation is very short lived. Positive motivation works far better. I worked at a company that used positive motivation. It worked so well that we broke efficiency records there that had never been broken before. But people have a tendency to stay with a company with the positive motivation. Not as much medical insurance used at companies like this, but more employees stay around and build up their benefits, raises, and retirement. In all reality companies can't afford this and this is why it is like hell to work for most companies. Companies want a fast turnover to not pay all the benefits. Even government organizations are hiring and firing for profit now.
This is why when I go to do grocery shopping I see so many sad people in public places. People that look like they have been verbally abused most of their lives because they have. This is what the corporations have done to america. It's true and I think the big bosses should come to grips with reality and take a good look in the mirror and ask themselves do I really like what I have become? Stan
There are a variety of beliefs held by people who think teachers (and others) are one cause of economic problems rather than the corporations (and their bought politicians) that actually are, and therefore these people are happy to have their money siphoned off by the corporations--of course, none of these are justifiable reasons:
• Dissatisfaction with the quality of education--and rather than working to fix this, they want to cut or yank teacher's incomes altogether
• The idea that teachers are "brainwashing" kids, and so they're a misuse of funds
• Personal grudges against locals, sometimes expanded into larger, self-serving "philosophies" about where money should go--not to local individuals, but to corporations who make all kinds of promises about doing the job better
• Fear that corporations, being bigger, more powerful targets, could somehow retaliate, and since the economically ignorant have to find some easy target, they go after people less able to defend themselves
• The idea that corporations somehow produce jobs out of thin air, or through their own genius, and so education for their employees isn't as important--this is one of the harder ideas to understand (because it's not possible to)
• The weasel's desire to side with the biggest gorilla possible--the corporation.
At the bare minimum, teacher's unions can prevent the government from firing all of them, which some state governments these days would be happy to do if they could. Hence one reason for their attacks on teacher's unions.
AS a school counselor from WISCONSIN who has 27 years in with a MASTERS DEGREE, I have personally known 20% of all students who graduated from my high school- the largest in the state- over that period of time. Considering the city is only 40,000 that is a significant number of people who put their trust in me. How am I repaid? Instead of being valued in my last few years - SCOTT WALKER wants me out. I guess since our last Rep Gov Tommy Thompson put caps on total compensation since 1992 to be no more than 3.8%- I was too expensive. My salary since 1992 went up 1.65% and each contract my insurance went to higher deductible, less coverage, higher preimum or all three. Now- for any teacher to get a raise over cost of living in Wisconsin, state law will have to be changed. As a counselor I stood up for kids all the time to insure the system-teachers, principals, and more would give kids a fair shake. Without union protection- I won't be standing up for anyones kid anymore.
Anthropology is indeed one of the most important kinds of classes that someone can take, at any stage of education. But while I agree with you that it can show us how bad some cultures have been, I think an equal or greater value is in showing us how fascinating and functional other cultures have been, and how much of western culture has been shaped by their contributions, thereby teaching us the proper level of respect for other cultures, and leaving them be, either to stay the same or evolve on their own, rather than trying to reshape them in our own image.
Tensions arising, The Rich are Richer so it time to Spy on everyone. There are many thieves out there everywhere. The Rich, The Oceans of greed will never fill up no matter how much you feed them. They are now putting a lock on the our nation making tensions of unhappiness arise like in themselves. The money bomb effort, the desires for power to control, tensions, accumulating over the need obtaining competing money for rule and the Jones and head butting with the Jones, So locking the wealth up in a box so it can be watch so no one can get at it, There are thieves that can take it away but I must keep watch. (Tensions) All that money of Happiness is lock up in a box just like Scrooge, Scrooge was tense and unhappy and he would watch everyone, tensions would ruled the air waves. 99 pieces for me 1/2 piece for you. You were late! Its a old game! Money talks nobody walks. ~Lao Russell said > The greatest urge in all Nature is Unity ! Disharmony brings tension. "Get together one more time. The Doors
Yes, it's been shown many times, both in practical situations and in behavioral experiments, that positive reinforcement works better than negative reinforcement, overly harsh punishment, etc. I helped run a company for about ten years in which I found that to be the case. Given that the proof has long been there, it still surprises me that this fact isn't universally acknowledged. At the least, cynical corporations should incorporate this, if for no other reason than it's better for the bottom line if done right. If employees treated properly stick around longer, and thus accrue more benefits, larger salaries, etc., then I see no reason why a clever CEO couldn't figure out how to prevent that from impacting their profits, rather than go the supposedly easy route of structuring their company in a way that uses the "hire and fire for profit" technique.
Oh, but those banksters earned it gambling with other people's money. Teachers are all glorified babysitters. [/sarcasm]
The right wingers make no secret that they are aware that stupid people vote republican. (Read that again, right wingers: not all republicans are stupid, but if you're stupid, chances are you vote republican) So dismantling education to give tax breaks to the greediest among us is all part of Ayn Rand's epic troll of humanity.
Anti-education/anti-intellectual and religion usually go hand-in-hand. Religion is their tool and greed is their end game. "Whoever has the most toys wins."
I don't know how to tell you this but i'll try. you still put your faith in government it's broken...
it runs on MONEY for favors if you don't have the MONEY you lose. Fairness whats that?
Listen did your hear that . They have us fighting over peanuts, and they stole the farm.
There is no MONEY left, and whats sad, nobody from congress is jail, state or federal......
No doubt CEOs are overpaid-they should be lucky to get 3-4 times the worker's wage let alone that there was a maquilladora boss making 134,000X the production worker wage.I don't think the education system is great either-a seconday education is what most of us will ever get and it only qualifies one to push a broom or a mop-considering this, we should all grad from high school with at least a trade.I don't think any teachers are over paid.
Union Teachers teach our kids, Right Wing Republicans don't like that !!... you figure it out.....
Please expain how they can give away millions every week with the lotteries that where supposed to be funding publc schools.There has been some misdirection of funds or the percentage needs to be increased in favor of education.Or of course the rich can pay there fair share and bring all the troops HOME.I'm sure they are going to have a hard time fighting for a country that can even afford to educate they children......
Unfortunately, CEOs and other executives are out for short term profits (maximizing their offshore bank accounts in the shortest time). The time has long passed when people with such titles looked to build their companies to grow and last for a long time. In fact, it is not just those heads of companies...it is their stock holders as well...they are all in it to maximize their profits in the shortest time. Perhaps it is because they all know (unlike those who work for them and who may have been convinced to put some wages away in some instrument for a nest egg for retirement) that the whole ponzi scheme of capitalism and the dominance of the US dollar is crumbling. The financial bubbles and collapses are getting worse. They know that they can only keep up the charade of continuously fooling the people for a limited time and they have all been making a mad rush to steal as much as they can before the people finally realize that the crooks have gotten away with all of the money and the gates are slammed shut by mass revolution or by some more restrictive change in our system. Many people now know that there is really no difference between the Democrat and Republican parties...they are both owned and controlled by the rich...those who have been grabbing all they can. If you want to look into our future...look at Latvia. Go to www.michael-hudson.com to see what has happened, what is happening, and what will happen.
Sounds a lot like the CEO I worked for. He owned so many expensive top-of-the-line sports cars that he had to have a big multistory garage built to house them all...one sports car could have bought my house...maybe a couple of houses.
- "He who dies with the most expensive toys wins!!!"
Part of the problem is that many people glamorize and idolize these people..they want to be just like them...and so they tend to support the ponzi scheme ideology.
On the average, CEO's are worth maybe 10% of that they presently "earn," because in fact they do not earn what they get; they basically steal it from the shareholders, defraud the public for it, help their corporations avoid costs of doing business such as cleaning up their wastes and pollution, bribe government officials here and abroad. In other words, many of them are thieves, plain and simple. And what do we pay thieves?
Teachers, on the other hand, should be paid far more than they are currently paid, they should have the advantage of collective bargaining, job security, and frankly, ____ the corporations that want to take over the education of our children, because thieves don't make good educators. We wouldn't need to lay off any teachers if more corporate officers and bribe-seeking government officials were "laid off" and sent to prison, which is where they belong.
@dowdotica #16, good comments! @AJ #17, it is best to write to the lawmakers. @Palindrometary #18, we have too many economic Manchurian candidates and presidents from the GOP. Medicare and social security will be history in 2014. @john sawyer #25, good comments! You have said it more correctly. We can learn from other cultures but the Anti-Christ believes she is right in everything.
For the light blue in my comment I must have pressed the wrong key. My computer skills are basic skills at best!
Unprovoked attacks are common in the American psyche.
It’s all about empire.
From the article, "It's all about empire!"
Consider: The U.S. Empire’s official spokesman to the United Nations, Madeleine Albright announced to the world that the deaths of half-a-million Iraqi children from the sanctions were “worth it.” That was in 1996, and the sanctions lasted another six years.
You can never make me believe that we are not The Anti-Christ that is leading American souls to eternal damnation!!!
All I have to say is that, it is the American MIDDLE class who voted in all those tea bag GOP representatives and all those repug Senators and Governors, who are now collectively trying to destroy EVERYTHING Democratic in America!
Medicare - Social Security - Education - Unions - Voting Rights! Lots more!
Now the Middle Class is reaping the whirlwind! They had no clue this was coming - this is what happens when you have a supposed educated class whose critical thinking process borders on the minimal! What did they expect?
Before this is all over, Americans will be in a much worst position than they were 2 years ago.
Right now, the Middle Class has the worst possible group of elected officials it has representing them in maybe 2 or 3 generations ( I would say Moronic)! And they are in a frenzy to destroy everything that the Middle Class has won and worked for since 1932! And doing it quickly before the Middle Class wake up from their snooze and enter a nightmare!
It simply amazes me how easy it is to ‘Fool” and “Manipulate” the Middle Class in America! That is why the fascist corporations and the new robber Banksters spend literally BILLIONs to manipulate and fool them. And this, when these Middle Class folk ALL had the benefit of a great education.
The Neo-cons want to end Public Education as we know it. If they can accomplish now what they can with an educated populace, imagine what they will accomplish when the populace is even less educated or radicalized with right wing ideology and fundamentalist religion! When the American people eventually wake up and realize what is really going on, it may very well be too late.
@dnardadem, very good comments!
Great new readings!
Bring in the clowns!
Our endless 1984 theme!
Here is a very good example of The Anti-Christ!
But, the banksters and Wall Street can keep robbing the poor and the working classes. Robbing persons is a MORTAL SIN.
My wife has dedicated her entire career to the teaching profession,almost 30 years and counting. She has run Head Start programs, is NYS certified in special ed., with a masters in elementary education. With all this she is currently taking an additional course to expand her credentials. Her so called summer vacation will be spent running a reading program at our local small town library. She never complains, and always comes home crying the last day of school because of her attachment to the kids. I would say she's lucky if her salary breaks down to minimum wage given all the hours she puts in. I can't even get her to participate in this blog, she's busy writing for her course work. I wish she could find time to teach me how to write, anyway she is a progressive.
Back to the question, what is a CEO worth, what is a teacher worth? My career experience with a CEO amounted to 17 years of working for and watching my company's CEO fight 7 DWI's, divorce, dump his new girlfriend and marry her daughter, play golf frequently during work hours, and travel to Europe a lot, among other things. Thank goodness the last 14 years I've been lucky enough to work in a nonprofit setting involving human services.
It's pretty clear to me, good teachers are priceless, CEO's are anywhere from enormously overpaid to being outright worthless parasites only good at inflicting economic terror on working class citizens.
A great teacher- priceless, but should receive at least as much as an American Express ad creative department head.
CEO's are worth their actual Intelligence Quotient X a fair percentage of stockholder dividends, such percentage as to be agreed upon and determined from time to time by a Board of at least 9-10 Directors who must also be subscribed stockholders, less the sum of benefits which have been reduced for all employees of the corporation, year to year.
Teachers are part of the foundation of our civilization. The quality of our teachers and our education system determines the quality of our culture and civilization. Teachers should be among the most highly esteemed professions and well compensated for their contribution to our civilization.
CEO's are another matter altogether.To be fair, I'm sure that there must be CEO's that are quality human beings and fulfill a useful purpose. There must be......Judging however by the current crop, as a group they are the sorriest bunch of slimeballs, thieves, and sociopaths imaginable. By virtue of their greedy self-serving plundering of every aspect of life on Earth in which they have influence, they have caused the term "CEO" to become almost a curse word. Of course the proliferation of the ubiquitos sociopath/CEO is the symptom of a tsunami of greed sweeping through the boardrooms of the corporations of the world. The Sociopath/CEO, being the highly paid thug, directing the plunder of everything within reach, to fill the pockets of the board of directors/shareholders.
In my opinion, the ongoing plunder of the educational system is simply a continuation of the mindless plundering of everything to satisfy the endless greed of unimaginably rich people driven mad by the unholy power of huge concentrations of WEALTH. In a way it's analogous to the formation,and behaviour of black holes. Once the concentration of mass reaches a certain limit, the overpowering force of gravity takes on a life of it's own. In the same way perhaps huge concentrations of wealth take on a life and power of their own which those within the reach of it's influence are powerless to resist.
To those of us outside the "force field", the folly is unmistakeable, and illogical. Those under the influence of the irresistible pull are unable to see their folly.
Education in this country is turning into a corporate-controlled industry.
For example, in the St Petersburg Times:
"A conservative billionaire who opposes government meddling in business has bought a rare commodity: the right to interfere in faculty hiring at a publicly funded university.
"A foundation bankrolled by Libertarian businessman Charles G. Koch has pledged $1.5 million for positions in Florida State University's economics department. In return, his representatives get to screen and sign off on any hires for a new program promoting 'political economy and free enterprise.'"
Re: The Rule of Law
Regulations are Laws. Deregulation means the doing away with law. In essence, we are living in a lawless society for the corporations.
Why not deregulate society? Is it because we have a dual justice system? Why do the common folk believe the lie that the elite are morally superior to the lower classes? It seems to me that people are people, regardless of class. If anything, power corrupts...