Tag Archives: unions

Does size matter when it comes to public school classes?

[Cross posted from Institute for Critical Education Studies blog]

Does size matter when it comes to public school classes?

This question was debated on CBC Radio’s The Current this morning. Burnaby, BC grade 4/5 teacher Jennifer Heighton, Russ Whitehurst of the Brookings Institution, and I weighed in on the question.

Important context is the ongoing BC teachers strike, where class size and composition are key elements of contract negotiations. The ruling BC Liberals stripped class size and composition rules from the BC teachers contract in 2002, a move that has twice been judged as illegal by BC courts.

I’ve written a brief summary of class size research, with key references, which you can find here.

You can read a very recent review of the research on class size here.

Last month, Global TV BC broadcast a “town hall” discussion on a wide variety of education issues related to education in BC and the ongoing dispute between teachers and government, including class size. You can watch that segment here.

Here’s a good background piece from The Tyee: Everything You Need to Know about BC Teacher Bargaining

Listen to The Current segment (21 minutes) on class size here.

Organizing adjunct faculty: In whose interests?

In  2012, the Service Employees International Union announced a locally focused organizing strategy, aimed at adjunct faculty working in large metropolitan areas. The idea is that by unionizing as many institutions as possible in a metro area, market pressures will build for colleges and universities to improve adjuncts’ pay, benefits, and working conditions, creating new local benchmarks.

SEIU Local 500  has had success in Washington DC area organizing adjunct unions  at American University, George Washington University,  Georgetown University and Montgomery College in Maryland. And organizing efforts are progressing at other area institutions, such as the University of DC.

SEIU’s Adjunct Action effort has since spread to Boston (Tufts University, Northeastern University, Lesley, Bentley University), Los Angeles, (Whittier College, University of La Verne) and Seattle, (Pacific Lutheran University) and other US cities, including Philadelphia.

But now, a little over a year since the SEIU metro strategy was announced, the American Federation of Teachers have announced their own citywide adjunct organizing strategy in Philadelphia, where they’ll be in direct competition with SEIU’s efforts.

According to Inside Higher Ed, the AFT’s United Academics of Philadelphia has targeted adjuncts (and graduate employees) at a number of the City of Brotherly Love’s higher education institutions, including: Temple University, Moore College of Art and Design, University of Pennsylvania, Bryn Mawr College, Swarthmore College, Community College of Philadelphia, Villanova University, and St. Joseph’s University. United Academics’ aim is to “become a city-wide bargaining unit under a common contract onto which individual campuses could sign.”

Is there enough adjunct love to go around in Philly?

Is the competition between SEIU and AFT to represent Philadelphia adjuncts a good thing for their potential members?

What is happening in Philadelphia seems to be a burgeoning turf war between SEIU and AFT and the prize is dues money (and clout). The Philadelphia situation is nothing new, merely a variation on a long running theme of unions battling for (each others) members, something that has intensified as organized trade union membership in the US has continued its slide. Recent examples include: SEIU v National Union of Healthcare Workers (Kaiser Permanente in California); Transportation Workers Union v Teamsters (American Airlines mechanics); Teamsters v International Association of Machinist (US Airways); and SEIU (SPM) v Federacion de Maestros de Puerto Rico (FMPR), to name a few.

Certainly these situations are bad PR for unions (especially since nearly 90% of the workforce in the US is unorganized). It’s also true that union raiding and organizing battles contradict the notion of solidarity amongst all unions and workers. The fact is that union bosses pretty much operate on the mantra of “solidarity for never” (as Rich Gibson says). Examples: Lawsuits filed by the nurses union against SEIU or the TWU’s legal actions against the Teamsters. Ironically (or not) what fuels these intra-labor union wars, at least in part, are the concessions these same unions have bargained away (e.g., job cuts, two-tier wage scales, benefit givebacks, the right to strike, etc.) all in order to ensure the flow of dues money.

Unions ≠ Worker Solidarity

Solidarity is the power of labor, no doubt. But worker solidarity shouldn’t be conflated with trade unions and their bosses. From the examples above we can see the divisions union bosses often create among workers and between union members and other members of the working class, with whom they share collective interests. In short, workers need to cast a wary eye toward their own unions because the unity of interests often described between the rank-and-file workers and their unions is most often a chimera.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather be a union member than not and I support organizing of all academics because unions have the potential to improve workplace rights, working conditions, wages, benefits, etc. But organizing, followed by bargaining a contract is merely the first steps of building solidarity and there are serious limitations to the kind of “business unionism” contracts we see for teachers and academics in particular.

For example, teacher unions in the US have tied their interests to corporate education reform (note that not all teachers have, but the union leadership has). The solidarity offered by National Education Association and AFT is not with the source of real educator power—that is unity with poor and working class parents and students who have everything to gain from school. Some early teacher unionists, such as Margaret Haley (who worked in both the NEA and AFT in the early 1900s), led campaigns that drew on the powerful unity of interests among students, teachers, and parents around issues such as class size, freedom to control the local curriculum, and a more just tax system.

Unfortunately both NEA and AFT have abandoned the vision that would link the activities of school workers with students and parents. The most obvious example of this estrangement of interests is the 1968 Ocean Hill-Brownsville teacher strike, which pitted the New York City teachers union, led by the late, long-time AFT President Albert Shanker, against the African American community. The conflict centered on community control of public schools. The union won and community control was lost, establishing a labor-management model that mirrors private industry, one in which educational policy was determined in bilateral negotiations between a highly centralized school administration and highly centralized union. 

Neither of these unions, anywhere, has attained attractive and enforceable rules about class size. Neither union has fought hard against the shift of the tax burden onto poor and working people. Neither the NEA nor AFT has defended academic freedom from the onslaught of standardized test regulations, indeed they commonly support a mandated curriculum (e.g., NCLB, Common Core State Standards).

The good news is that workers and their unions are not synonymous and there are movements within (and outside) of unions led by workers to pursue real, collective solidarity that extends beyond narrow unions interests.

In a nutshell, criticizing the actions of labor unions is far from throwing the interests of rank-and-file workers (or the working class) under the bus, indeed it is one of the first things we have to do to protect ourselves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WAKE UP, NLRB! CHICAGO GRAD STUDENT EMPLOYEES RALLY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WAKE UP, NLRB! CHICAGO GRAD STUDENT EMPLOYEES RALLY
TO WAKE THE NLRB FROM ITS COMA,
HELP IT RECOGNIZE THAT GRAD LABOR COUNTS!

Chicago, IL, December 13, 2011 — Today at noon, Chicago-area graduate students and their supporters will demonstrate outside the Chicago branch office of the National Labor Relations Board (209 S. LaSalle St.) and present a petition calling on the NLRB to wake from its coma of inaction and recognize private university graduate student teaching and research assistants as employees with a legal right to unionize and collectively bargain.

The rally, organized by Graduate Students United, the graduate employee union at the University of Chicago, and the national Grad Labor Counts! campaign, will feature a dramatic skit in which the NLRB is presented as a comatose hospital patient to reflect its record of inaction and danger of imminent demise. The Grad Labor Counts! campaign has been endorsed by the 1.4 million-strong American Federation of Teachers and the 70,000-member American Association of University Professors.

“We’re calling for for urgent medical attention to the ailing patient from President Obama and Congress, who have the power to restore the NLRB by appointing a new member in 2012,” explained Dasha Polzik, a member of Graduate Students United and an organizer of the Grad Labor Counts! campaign.

“We’re also calling on the NLRB to wake from its coma and issue a ruling on a case that has sat before it since April 2010 concerning the employee status of graduate students at private universities,” added Greg Goodman, another GSU member. Graduate student teaching and research assistants were first recognized as employees by a unanimous NLRB ruling in 2000, and then stripped of their employee status by a later Bush-era ruling in 2004.

Representatives from Grad Labor Counts! will deliver a petition with over 2,700 signatures from across the country calling on the NLRB to rule on the case and recognize graduate student teaching and research assistants at private universities as employees. Details on the Grad Labor Counts! campaign and petition are available at http://gradlaborcounts.org.

Contacts:

Maddy Elfenbein (madeleine.elfenbein@gmail.com)
646-206-5154
Samuel Brody (sam.brody@gmail.com)
917-748-4146

Graduate Students United (AFT-AAUP) at the University of Chicago
http://uchicagogsu.org
# # #

France on strike

France on Strike

Weeks of strikes, protests and demonstrations have brought much of France to a standstill as workers, students and others voice their strong opposition to a government proposal to raise the age for a minimum pension from 60 to 62. A quarter of the nation’s gas stations were out of fuel, hundreds of flights were canceled, long lines formed at gas stations and train services in many regions were cut in half. Protesters blockaded Marseille’s airport, Lady Gaga canceled concerts in Paris and rioting youths attacked police in Lyon. The unpopular bill is edging closer to becoming law as the French Senate is preparing to vote on it today. Collected here are recent images of the unrest around France. Update: Pension reform bill just now passed by French senate. (40 photos total)


A man holds a placard which reads “Listen to the public’s rage” during a demonstration in front of the French Senate in Paris October 20, 2010. French trade unions kept up their resistance on Wednesday to an unpopular pension reform due for a final vote in the Senate this week. (REUTERS/Charles Platiau)

View more photos here.

Workplace No 17 (2010): Working In, and Against, the Neo-Liberal State: Global Perspectives on K-12 Teacher Unions

Workplace: A Journal for Academic Labor No 17 (2010):
Working In, and Against, the Neo-Liberal State: Global Perspectives on K-12 Teacher Unions

Table of Contents
http://m1.cust.educ.ubc.ca/journal/index.php/workplace/issue/view/8

Articles
——–
Working In, and Against, the Neo-Liberal State: Global Perspectives on K-12 Teacher Unions: Special Issue Introduction
Howard Stevenson

Terminating the Teaching Profession: Neoliberal Reform, Resistance and the Assault on Teachers in Chile
Jill Pinkney Pastrana

Social Justice Teacher Unionism in a Canadian Context: Linking Local and Global efforts
Cindy Rottmann

Australian Education Unionism in the Age of Neoliberalism: Education as a Public Good, Not a Private Benefit
Jeff Garsed, John Williamson

“What’s Best for Kids” vs. Teacher Unions: How Teach For America Blames Teacher Unions for the Problems of Urban Schools
Heidi Katherine Pitzer

Gramsci, Embryonic Organic Intellectuals, and Scottish Teacher Learning Representatives: Alternatives to Neoliberal Approaches to Professional Development in the K-12 Sector
Alex Alexandrou

Pedagogy of Liminality? The Case of Turkish Teachers’ Union Egitim-Sen
Duygun Gokturk

Book Reviews
——–
Review of Industrial Relations in Education: Transforming the School Workforce
Merryn Hutchings

A Portrait of Authenticity: A Review of Carl Mirra’s (2010) The AdmirableRadical: Staughton Lynd and Cold War Dissent, 1945-1970. Kent, OH: Kent University Press
Adam Renner

Review of Union Learning Representatives: Challenges and Opportunities
Becky Wright

Review of How the University Works: Higher Education and the Low-Wage Nation
Marisa Huerta

Review of Academic Repression: Reflections from the Academic-Industrial Complex
Leah Schweitzer

The Sociopathology of Everyday Business: A Review of The University Against Itself: The NYU Strike and the Future of the Academic Workplace
Jim Rovira

Review of The Rich World and the Impoverishment of Education: Diminishing Democracy, Equity and Workers’ Rights
Paul Orlowski

Technology and (Human) Rights: A Review of Human Rights in the Global Information Society
Stephen Petrina

Review of The Developing World and State Education: Neoliberal Depredation and Egalitarian Alternatives
Steven L. Strauss

Miscellany
——–
Connecting Teacher Unions and Teacher Union Research
AERA Teachers’ Work/Teacher Unions SIG

Rouge Forum Update: An Injury to One is an Injury to All: Detroit and Much More!

http://www.richgibson.com/blog/

Dear Friends,

Check the link above but note that Detroit may be the next centerpiece for education struggles soon. The Detroit Federation of Teachers bosses signed a tentative agreement (TA) with the Broad Foundation’s Detroit Financial Manager, Bob Bobb who now runs the system, that offers DPS $500 a month from each teacher’s check, or $10,000 a year, to be paid back as a no-interest loan when the teacher quits the system.

With about 7000 school workers in DPS (not all classroom teachers), paying the dun for 2 1/2 years of the 3 year contract, that’s a $105 million no-interest loan to a school system that claimed it needed about $40 million in concessions from the school workers. More, DPS claims its on the brink of bankruptcy, which would likely dissolve the debt to educators.

The TA also includes huge give-backs in insurances (eliminating Blue Cross), merit pay, teachers evaluating teachers, and worse.

The contract language is murky on what looks like a union bracero program, selling the labor of members to DPS with a specious promise of repayment on the “loan,” (blackmail for a job). The TA is here: http://mi.aft.org/dft231/ although in the past members have complained about not being told of the full measure of TA’s.

In a meeting of about 2500 of the DFT members at Cobo Hall on Sunday, most rank and filers agreed that 90% plus rose to oppose the TA that was bargained behind their backs, involving the top national leadership of the AFT, like President Randi Weingarten.

No group of organized educators has been on strike in the last decade more than DFT rank and filers who led a huge wildcat strike, against their union, against the law, and against the employer—and they made gains.

But today the DFT is relatively isolated. The union leadership stayed silent in the face of massive corruption and incompetence that infected nearly every aspect of Detroit school life. Citizens turned against the system as a whole.

When Broad’s Bobb arrived, citizens applauded as he rooted out the more obvious small time crooks in the system, but he left aside the contractors who looted the public by stealing millions in no-bid contract during the five year period of the Takeover Board, when the governor wiped out the elected board and replaced them with, mostly, suburban auto execs from the failing Big Three. The Takeover Board left DPS at least $40 million in debt.

Now, there are at least 10 newly built schools that sit empty and stripped of everything of value, schools that were built in the Takeover period–in a system that loses 12,000 students a year.

Bobb “won” a new $500 million bond issue to build more new schools by a 2/3 majority this fall, indicating his newly won clout, and his ability to syphon off more money from a system that claims it will build new schools, but demands blackmail payments from teachers. Bobb has already pulled out millions on no-bid offers to cronies in Broad related companies.

The DFT’s sellout Tentative Agreement will appear in urban bargaining tables everywhere next year, if DPS gets away with this. An injury to one really will go before an injury to all.

Every expression of solidarity in opposition to this TA will matter. More, suburban MEA members need to unite with the DFT rank and file, join with parents and kids to create enough educational civil strife that drives the DFT bosses back to the bargaining table, forces them to report out a TA that makes gains, not concessions.

No union is ideologically or structurally prepared to take on the battles ahead–why we formed the Rouge Forum a decade ago. When they say “Cutback,” We say “Fight Back!”

There is MUCH MORE on the blog linked here.

Good luck to us, every one.

r

Rouge Forum Update: Great Depression Halloween Special: Boo!

Below are some some links from the most recent RF Update, read the full update here.

The core issue of our time: The real promise of perpetual war and rising inequality met by the potential of a mass class conscious movement for equality and justice.

Smile of the Week:
Student asks his principal, “Where is my teacher?”.
“Citywide layoffs”, replies the principal.
“My text books?” asks the student.
“State austerity plan”, says the principal.
“Student loan?” continues the student.
“Federal budget cuts”, says the principal.
Finally, exasperated, student asks, “But how am I going to get an education?”.
To which the equally exasperated principal replies, “This is your education”.

The Education Agenda is a War Agenda and the War Agenda is an Education Agenda Featurette:

Duncan Flunked Chicago School Closing Project: “This report reveals that eight in 10 Chicago Public Schools (CPS) students displaced by school closings transferred to schools ranking in the bottom half of system schools on standardized tests. However, because most displaced students transferred from one low-performing school to another, the move did not, on average, significantly affect student achievement.”

Hey Kids, Photograph that Recruiter

DFT Praises Extension Of Broad’s Bobb Contract

Detroit: An Individual and Collective Wrong–Award Winning Counselor Mr Z has to Go

NEA Loses NCLB Suit; How Many Hundreds of Thousands of Your Dues $s did NEA Waste?
“Depending on whom you ask, the No Left Child Behind Act might be described in many ways: bold, ground-breaking, noble, naïve, oppressive, all of the above and more,” Judge Sutton wrote. ” But one thing it is not is ambiguous, at least when it comes to the central tradeoff presented to the states: accepting flexibility to spend significant federal funds in return for (largely) unforgiving responsibility to make progress in using them.” NEA will do anything, like courts and ballots, to avoid educator/student alliances to control work places and communities, as those actions would make NEA as irrelevant as it already is.

NEA Bosses Escalated Their Once-Secret Effort to Boost Their Salaries and Merge With the Worst Union in the USA, the AFT and AFL-CIO, When NEA Prez Dennis Van Roekel Directed Key Committees to Revisit the Issue. This is what one researcher rightfully concluded about what would happen some time ago:

And this is what happened last time NEA tried the merger scheme

DPS Lost Millions on Corrupt Land Deals

$30+ Million Detroit Public School Fraud and Growing Every Day

Smashing Protest at Southwestern College, San Diego

Public Universities Gut Student Life, Charge More: “The stimulus isn’t a bridge; it’s a short pier…This fall, flagships still had to cut costs and raise tuition, most by 6.5 percent or more. And virtually all of the nation’s top public universities are likely to push through large increases in coming years.”..“The students are at a point of rebellion, because they’re paying more and getting less,” Flagships are attracting more wealthy and better-prepared students. At U.C.L.A., class size has increased by 20 percent over three years ..Today, UM is largely protected from Michigan’s plummeting economy. Only 7 percent of its budget is provided by the state.

“Community and resistance—or imperial barbarism”

Below is note from Rich Gibson (San Diego State University) on the anniversary of the US war in Afghanistan.

Dear Friends,

Today is the 8th Anniversary of the US assault on Afghanistan, a full invasion, war, in response to a crime.

In my section A section of the New York Times (CA) , there is no mention of that.

Since then, $12.9 trillion was given to the banks. The wars will cost around $3 trillion if they project into next year, as they will.

The government became a full blown corporate state, an executive committee and armed weapon of the rich. Schools merged with the effort, becoming full-blown missions for capitalism. Those educators who collaborated became, knowingly or not, its missionaries.

The American public, having agreed to shop during Bush’s wars, can no longer shop. The US economy, 2/3 rooted in consumerism, cannot consume, nor produce, and the banks will not loan to the unemployed. Spectacles continue, more and faster. Baseball! Football! Porn!!

The demagogue, Obama and his friend, Arne Duncan, now throw the Bush agenda for education into hyperspeed: Regimented curricula promoting witless nationalism, anti working class high stakes exams, militarization, layoffs and cutbacks, some privatization, and, with perfect logic, merit pay.

The union leadership of every major union cooperated at every turn, played a significant role in electing Obama, in harmony with their Quisling roles of the past. They are the nearest and most vulnerable of workers’ enemies. Harsh measures for them.

Professional organizations accepted the division of academic labor they represent; remained largely impotent. Historians talked to historians, wrote a few petitions, rarely crossed the hall to deal with the sociologists. Some took up petitions, begging.

The rich grew much richer as barbarism rose. The poor became much poorer. Segmented by race, class, gender, split against each other by reactionary unions, now we see impoverished people battling for scraps.

The education agenda is a war agenda. The core issue of our time is the reality of the promise of endless war and booming inequality met by the potential of mass, activist, class conscious resistance, connecting reason to real power.

The youth at the occupation of UCSC point the way. Having a good school within this capitalist society is like having a reading room in a prison. Not acceptable.

The choice is clear enough. Community and resistance—or Imperial Barbarism.

Up the rebels!

Good luck to us, every one.

r

Rouge Forum Update: War, Decay, and Sane Resistance!

Dear Friends,

We will circulate a full report from the Rouge Forum Conference at Eastern Michigan University over the weekend.
This is a very brief preliminary report from the EMU student newspaper.

On the Education Front:
The California Teachers Association and NEA bosses wasted more than $12.2 million on their outrageous tax the poor scam that failed completely and, worse, managed to convince even more poor and working people that organized education workers are actually enemies. Nice work, CTA.

Meanwhile, UTLA managed to cower their way out of what was to be last Friday’s mass walkout, fearful of a judge’s order against it.

Everyone should be clear on this. The only illegal job action is one that fails. If thousand of teachers walked out, the judge would do nearly nothing, indeed nothing except try to fine CTA. So? CTA is not a bank and CTA members can picket judges’ homes.

The Green Dot Takeover. Since UTLA and NEA have done so little to build a base among poor and working class parents and kids, and since AFT loves Green Dot, this plan to seize the school system is conceivable. And it is another move from the LA Times to attack the rising militancy of the education workers who have a walkout scheduled this week. There are thoughtful and active alternatives to all this…..

Obama placed Bob Bobb, paid jointly by the Broad Foundation and the Detroit Public Schools, in charge of DPS. Then The One declared Detroit “Ground Zero,” in the education wars. Bobb announced a plan to federalize DPS. Would that be a first?

On the Perpetual War Front (the education agenda is a war agenda):
Obamagogue To Cover up Torture Photos

Escobar: Pipelineistan Part 2

On the Fake Radicals Front:
Once the Weathermen were liberals (and police agents) with bombs. Terrorists who opposed the hard work that it takes to build a mass class conscious movement to transcend the system of capital. Now, they are just liberals without bombs. But, unlike Billy Ayers and the rest of the Weathermen, at least Mark Rudd admits he and his ganglet destroyed the Students for a Democratic Society on the eve of the biggest outpouring of mass action from 1950 on.

On the Organized Decay is an Element of Fascism Front:

Detroit Photo Essay: Who is next?

Neighbors Prevent Firefighters from Saving Detroit Drug Den

Foreclosures hit high in April

The troubling reality that fascism in the past has sometimes been a popular mass movement: The Third Reich at War

On the “This is not, not, for sure, not a depression, it’s ah, well, ahem,” Front:
Tickled by the NY Times reassurance that this is not, surely not, absolutely not, could not be, a GREAT depression, it’s just a depression. And good time are right around the corner.

On the Unions Became What They Claimed to Set Out to Oppose Front:

UAW Won’t Strike Chrysler Until 2015
You don’t need to pay a union to surrender. You can throw up your hands and do that alone. Concessions do not save jobs. They just make bosses want more. The UAW is a prime example. When they say cut back, we should say, Fight Back!

The Torment and Demise of the United Auto Workers Union
Unions are unfit to meet the crisis at hand. While it may be important to have one toe in a union in order to meet people and build a base for real change, it is equally important to have ten toes out of the union—in an organization that can connect reason, passion, and power. Like the Rouge Forum. Please spread the word. There is no single “Line” of the RF. We have many voices and many varying talents.

Here are the last two stanzas to the great workers’ song Solidarity Forever:

They have taken untold millions
that they never toiled to earn,
But without our brain and muscle
not a single wheel can turn.
We can break their haughty power;
gain our freedom when we learn
That the Union makes us strong.

In our hands is placed a power
greater than their hoarded gold;
Greater than the might of armies,
magnified a thousand-fold.
We can bring to birth a new world
from the ashes of the old
For the Union makes us strong.

Well, the union didn’t make us strong, but the rest is on the mark and the struggle continues.

Thanks to Joe Bishop and the Eastern Michigan volunteers, Adam and Gina, WayneO, Nancye, Patricia, Faith and Craig, Greg (whose speech will be up by the weekend), Pat B, Bill-Scott–the youths-and Marty, Paul, Cory, Connie, Travis, Roger, Doug S and Doug Y, Gil G (that book is terrific) Billy X, Donna, Sherry, Zena, Em, Candace, Rebecca, Sonia, Maria, Chris (what a long drive), Susan O and H, O and Ido and the baby, Steve and Perry for getting things going and you too Kevin and Marc, Michael who is a smart guy and good friend, the heroic Sergei and the secretaries, Jeremiah, The Uprising and Tainted Machine, Staughton Lynd who is a beacon of good sense, Marty G who should have been there, Big M, Bob and Tommie, and all who made the conference a delight.

Good luck to us, every one.

r

Rouge Forum Update: Schools, Economic Crises, Wars and More!

Dear Friends,

Educators attending the Rouge Forum Conference (May 15-17, Ypsilanti, Michigan) can now gain Continuing Education Units for attending conference sessions. Please spread the word.

Thanks to Joe Bishop and the Michigan work group for this big step forward. Links to the current issue of the Rouge Forum News.

This week in the schools:

Sacramento holds segregated assemblies to promote racist high-stakes exams: Laguna Creek Principal Doug Craig said dividing the students by race allowed staff to talk about test scores without making any one ethnic group feel singled out in a negative manner.”Is it racist? I don’t believe it is,” Craig said.

Poway AFT Local Leads Southern California in Making Concessions: Concessions don’t save jobs. Like giving blood to sharks, concessions only make bosses want more.  It should be no surprise that the Poway district is represented by the worst union in the USA, the American Federation of Teachers, but it is of little matter now. The Poway union now sets the table for the rest of SoCal and especially San Diego. Nobody should follow their lead.

Controversial Stanford Study on Big Tests, Girls, and Minorities
, by Emily Alpert.

This week on the economy:

Joseph Stiglitz – One of the reasons why our economy is weak is that we have growing inequality in our society. That means that people who would spend the money don’t have it. We sustained their consumption by lending but that lending was unsustainable and so unless we do something about the underlying inequalities both within our countries and across the world, it may be difficult to restore the global economy to the kind of prosperity that we would hope.

Reich: We are not at the beginning of the end.

GM and Chrysler Bankruptcy May End Pensions.

Jackknife: The collapse of the Teamsters Union.

Social Inequality and Mental Health.

This week on wars and resistance:

California Towns Defeat Military Recruiters.

Forget Star Wars, It’s Back to the Little Wars.

Democrats and Rockefeller backed CIA Torture.

With sadness, we note the death of Lindy Blake, courageous mutineer and Vietnam war resister.

“The sky is, of course, falling. We are lambs among wolves. The core issue of our time is the relationship of rising color-coded social and economic inequality challenged by the potential of mass class-conscious resistance.”

Thanks to Amber, Adam, Gina, Wayne, Dave, Kevin, Beau, Vanessa, Cheri, Donna, Kelly, Sarah, Marisol, Ernesto, Candace, Sally, Sandy, Ann, Ruthie, Della, Jose, Greg and Katie, Joe B, Paula, Alfie, Steve R and Rick C, Bill,  and Glenn.

See you in Ypsi!

All the best and
good luck to us, every one.

r