Below are some links and commentary from the latest Rouge Forum Update.
Read the full update here.
October 16/17, is the 150th Anniversary of John Brown’s Raid on Harper’s Ferry. Brown knew that the very definition of racism was sharpening (the notion of a separate species) and that slavery sought new territory as well. He knew slavery and exploitation are violent, and profitable, slavery being the cornerstone of industrial capital. And he knew the Masters do not adopt the ethics of the slaves. From his last speech, “Had I interfered in the manner which I admit, and which I admit has been fairly proved (for I admire the truthfulness and candor of the greater portion of the witnesses who have testified in this case), had I so interfered in behalf of the rich, the powerful, the intelligent, the so-called great, or in behalf of any of their friends, either father, mother, brother, sister, wife, or children, or any of that class, and suffered and sacrificed what I have in this interference, it would have been all right; and every man in this court would have deemed it an act worthy of reward rather than punishment.”
Action and Reaction in the Schools
UPTE Calls for General Strike: The following resolution calling for direct actions up to / including ageneral strike of public education workers was passed overwhelmingly earlier today by the statewide convention of University Professional and Technical Workers (UPTE / CWA). UPTE is the union that called a one-day strike on September 24, one of the key events in the September 24 day of action at UC Berkeley. OEA’s Rep Council passed a similar motion on October 6. [UPTE represents 12,000 research, technical and health workers at the University of California.
“Therefore be it resolved that we work in concert with other public sector unions, students and community members to organize a unified response that could include a general strike, a walkout from classes and other direct actions.”
Blackwater Ousted at Southwestern College After 2 Year Fightback: “CHULA VISTA, CA (Oct. 16) – Southwestern College District Governing Board approved the cancellation of their agreement with Blackwater-Xe in their October 14, 2009 board meeting. The agreement had students from Southwestern College enrolled in law enforcement training programs using shooting ranges in the Blackwater-Xe Otay Mesa mercenary training facility.”
AFT Lines Up For Merit Pay at Obama’s Trough: “Education reformers were pleasantly stunned when the American Federation of Teachers announced today that two of the winners of their new Innovation Fund grants planned to use the money to create teacher-evaluation systems that give weight to students’ standardized test scores.”
What of NEA With 3.5 Million Members? NEA Prezzie Dennis Van Roekel addressed the recent AFL-CIO convention in Pittsburgh where the narcissist Richard Trumka was anointed President of the corrupt Federation. NEA’s bosses have been trying to work a secret merger pact with the AFL-CIO for twenty years. It would add a lot to their salaries, and add another layer of enemies to NEA members. Then Van Roekel traveled on Air Force Two with Arne Duncan, Joe Biden, to Syracuse, to tout education “reform.”
What to do with this “unionism?”
Army Wants to Recruit in Middle School: “Wichita’s program uses a military structure to teach civics lessons…“The Army’s got a lot deeper pockets than education,” he said.”
Rothstein on NCLB Reauthorization: “The Obama administration’s ESEA re-authorization proposal should reject the continued punishment of schools based on flawed standardized tests, and instead focus on the careful and cautious design of new forms of qualitative evaluation.”