Charles Woodson weighs in on Wisconsin protests

Ordinarily we at PFT avoid stories like the news of the day in Wisconsin, where union members are engaged in massive protests against the governor’s plan to end collective bargaining for state workers. But while we steer clear of the particulars of the issue, we’ll note the involvement of some Packers players in the matter.

Most notably, as Mike Freeman of CBS points out, Packers cornerback Charles Woodson has placed himself squarely in the corner of the protesters.

“It is an honor for me to play for the Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers and be a part of the Green Bay and Wisconsin communities,” Woodson said. “I am also honored as a member of the NFL Players Association to stand together with working families of Wisconsin and organized labor in their fight against this attempt to hurt them by targeting unions.”

Members of the NFL Players Association don’t have a whole lot in common with the members of public employees’ unions, but at a time when the owners are preparing to lock the players out, it’s not surprising that the players’ union wants to position itself as showing solidarity with other unions in their communities and around the country. It was the NFL Players Association that released the statement from Woodson, and we’ll surely hear a lot more pro-union sentiment coming from NFL players if the expected lockout drags on.

In another story that comes from the intersection of the NFL and the Wisconsin protests, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn called off his trip to Wisconsin, where he was supposed to pay off his NFC Championship Game bet with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

“In light of the very serious issues that the state of Wisconsin is trying to work through right now,” Quinn’s office said in a statement, “the governor felt the timing was not necessarily ideal and that it would be more appropriate to find a better date.”

176 responses to “Charles Woodson weighs in on Wisconsin protests

  1. If Charles Woodson goes on strike, we miss a football game. When teachers go on strike it impacts families all over Wisconsin, causing children to miss school, parents to have additional costs for childcare, parents missing work to stay home with their kids. Sorry Charlie, I’m not with you this time.

  2. How wonderful – a pro football player with such deep understanding of the economics of the real world has weighed in on an issue of the day.

  3. Teachers not showing up for their jobs in order to protest a bill they don’t like proposed by their elected officials. What a bunch of losers. It should be a crime.

  4. Wow. A union member supporting unions. How about Wisconsin teachers get back to work and accept the fact that the gravy train is over (for now anyway). Welcome to the club called recession where the rest of us have been for 4 years now.

  5. The players union is different then the government workers union. Where as players are getting their retirement pay from the owners and WI unions are getting theirs from the taxpayers

  6. Charles is torn on the issue. On the one hand he wants to side with the little guy in the dispute. On the other hand some of those rubes walking the line are his team owners and employers.

  7. To correct, the collective bargaining rights are not being taken away. They are being limited to bargaining over wages. Big difference.

    A multi-millionaire sports player working in the private sector is much different than earning wages provided by taxpayers. If he is in such solidarity, why not pay his “fair share” and donate some of his salary to the cause? Put your money where your mouth is progressives!!

  8. Ok, multi-millionaire nfl player and $30k/year school teacher showing solidarity. One year of his salary could pay for lifetime of a teacher’s earnings.

    This is a silly publicity stunt by the NFLPA. If Woodson really gave a rat’s ass about those teachers maybe he would donate some of this personal fortune to that teacher’s union.

  9. “A multi-millionaire sports player working in the private sector is much different than earning wages provided by taxpayers. If he is in such solidarity, why not pay his “fair share” and donate some of his salary to the cause? Put your money where your mouth is progressives!!”

    Just because he works in the private sector doesn’t mean he doesn’t pay taxes. In fact since he makes so much money, he actually pays the most taxes and is “donating his fair share of his salary to the cause” just like everyone else in the state.

  10. The unions a contracts are bankrupting our country. Wisconsin is just a microcosm of a more widespread problem. Why should we even consider the opinion of this guy as having any weight or validity whatsoever? What credentials does he possess relative to government budgets, spending and entitlement packages that should give his opinion one ounce of relevancy? The governor of Wisconsin is taking a needed step to get their fiscal house in order. Charles Woodson is in no way qualified to open his mouth in this matter. It’s like a 3rd grader telling a pilot how to fly a plane.

    Shut up, Charles… you are ignorant in this matter. If you want to offer opinions on matters relating to football then we’ll give credence to what you say. Otherwise just shut up.

  11. When unions disappear, so does the Middle Class, and say hello to the return of a society of only feudal lords and serfs. That’s where we were before unions, and that’s where we’ll be again.

  12. Only 5 states do not have collective bargaining for educators and have deemed it illegal. Those states and their ranking on ACT/SAT scores are as follows:
    -South Carolina -50th
    -North Carolina -49th
    -Georgia -48th
    -Texas -47th
    -Virginia -44th
    If you are wondering, Wisconsin, with its collective barganing for teachers, is ranked 2nd in the country, how is this a bad thing?

  13. I respect Woodson, after all he did donate 2 million to a Michigan hospital and he does give alot to Charity, but likes others said, he sholda kept quiet on this one. His union is EXTREMELY different. WI teachers and other works jsut dont get it, they want to protest to get their way which wont work, were broke, take a cut and get back to work. Youre obviously showing the taxpayers what you care about….NOT YOUR JOB, just your benefits…

  14. Any one who works for the government is beholding to me and others like me. We work for the private sector. Money is stolen from us by the government to pay the salaries and benefits of employees hired by the government. We are working families. We are the producers. We contribute to our own retirement and own health care insurance. We’ll be damned if we’re going to pay more taxes, take less pay and lose our jobs in order to keep the moochers in their over paid, under performing government jobs. The government has no money and doesn’t produce a thing. It exists by stealing the money that working families with or without children have EARNED. With out the private sector workers (producers) the government and its employees have no money and no jobs. It’s time elected officials start representing the people who actually pay the bills (the taxpayers) and stop the corruption and the private back room deals that are made with the special interests. ESPECIALLY UNIONS AND THEIR GOONS. Remember, there are far more of US then union workers. The Tea Party is just the beginning. We’re tired of the TYRANNY. Wait til the 2012 elections get here. Like Peter O’Toole when his Arab band of soldiers catches up with the Turks who massacred the Arab men, women and children in the movie Lawrence of Arabia. Just before he mounts his attack he yells out “NO PRISONERS!”, NO PRISONERS!”.

  15. So if the players and the nflpa leadership start showing support for unions across the country how can they then, without getting egg on their face, decertify their union in the face of a lockout in order to file a lawsuit against the nfl?

    Makes no sense imo that the nflpa takes part in any union talk or rally until this cba mess is straightened out.

    Am I missing something, but this seems pretty obvious?

  16. “lboogie25 says:
    Feb 21, 2011 12:19 PM
    To correct, the collective bargaining rights are not being taken away. They are being limited to bargaining over wages. Big difference. ”

    To correct, “bargaining for wages” means “up to the consumer price index” per the actual bill. If teachers want a wage increase greater than the rate of inflation, it must go to a public referendum. There is not a “big difference” between what was said and what is reality. Don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining.

  17. Its amazing that those attacking unions are those that do have the rights that unions have. If you had a chance to organize against losing things that are taken from you because of continuous BAD decisions of those elected to look out for all of us, and only stand up for those who give the most to their campaigns would do so in a heart beat and are simply envious of the position that we have put ourselves in!

  18. Heres a FACT that anyone can verify easily. Of course if you are a right wing stooge who gets your info from Faux News thats probably too much work for you.

    US Labor Dept stats show the middle class was at its height as the same time union membership was at its height (the mid 1950’s). Its a non debatable fact. You remember that time right? Its now referred to as “the good ol days”.

    As union membership numbers have declined so has the middle class. Today we have the mega rich, the super rich, the rich, the very well to do, a very small middle class, a large working poor, and the poor.

    Income equality (the difference between what the richest and the poorest make) is at its highest point since the days of the robber barons. 2% of the population owns 75% of the wealth.

    And yet you have idiots that want to take shots at unions. How stupid can some people be. Its best they stick to commenting on Andy Reid’s weight as economics is obviously out of their league.

  19. First, the teachers haven’t gone on strike. They are using sick days and personal days to protest. Since a lot of people on here seem to have the attitude that teachers are nothing more than glorified babysitters, I’ll take the equivalent of the babsitter pay because that would equal out to about 225k for 180 days of pay.

    The teachers know they are going to have to give some things back, but giving up the right to collective bargaining has nothing to do with the state defecit, (especially when Walker has given even more tax cuts to businesses to create those “mythical” jobs that are just rolling out by the thousands.) its just an attack on unions.

    And for the Tea Party mouth piece who says the government works for him and provides nothing…remember teachers also pay taxes so the government works for them as well. Also, the government that provides and does nothing provides, roads, fire and police, trash collection (and yes teachers) and other social services.

    I’m sure the Tea Party would love to see the bill pass and drive qualified teachers out of the state so they can teach Creationism and whatever else the Limbaugh/Beck/Palin’s of the world tell them to think.

    Good luck with that.

  20. This clown of a Governor is just out trying to bust the union,as soon as he got into office he made good on the tax cuts for some big business and some of the wealthiest Wisconsin has to offer.As I suspected government will look to solve deficit problems on the backs of working class America as the rich continue to ride the gravy train.Go ahead speaker of the house of the U S go after social security and I can assure you that crying little mommas boy will be a 1 term speaker of the house….old people go out and vote,so when people are barley getting by don’t go after their money

  21. 3octaveFart says: Feb 21, 2011 12:31 PM

    When unions disappear, so does the Middle Class, and say hello to the return of a society of only feudal lords and serfs. That’s where we were before unions, and that’s where we’ll be again

    ———————-

    Maybe so. Then you will see the same scenes being played out in Cairo and Tripoli happening in New York and DC. It happened here before and its most likely going to happen again.

  22. Woodson is right. Why is it OK for firefighters to have collective barginning rights but not teachers? Why is OK for cops but not prison guards? (Oh yeah, some supported Walker, some didn’t.)

    While we’re at it why should a worker in the private sector have more rights than a worker in the public sector? If a private contractor ran the schools or the prisons – would those teachers or guards have more rights? Wouldn’t their benefits come from the same tax payers?

    Walker gave out business tax breaks totaling about $130M as soon as he walked in the door. Why were those OK but health care insurance for teachers not OK? Actually the state is not broke before the tax breaks they had a slight surplus.

  23. Yeah Charles Stay out of this! We need the teachers to take a pay cut so they can help pay for the tax cut for corporations that create all the jobs! Look how well it worked under Bush! Just sit down and play football

  24. “Any one who works for the government is beholding to me and others like me. We work for the private sector. Money is stolen from us by the government to pay the salaries and benefits of employees hired by the government. We are working families. We are the producers. We contribute to our own retirement and own health care insurance. We’ll be damned if we’re going to pay more taxes, take less pay and lose our jobs in order to keep the moochers in their over paid, under performing government jobs. The government has no money and doesn’t produce a thing. It exists by stealing the money that working families with or without children have EARNED. ”

    Then the government takes that money and uses it to pay teachers, firefighters, cops, construction workers etc to keep your streets clean, your child educated, your water safe from bacteria and other posions. If you have no taxes, you get no services. Have fun lugging your garbage to the non-existent landfill and pumping your own morning shower water out of the ground.

  25. boonedigg says:
    Feb 21, 2011 12:38 PM
    Only 5 states do not have collective bargaining for educators and have deemed it illegal. Those states and their ranking on ACT/SAT scores are as follows:
    -South Carolina -50th
    -North Carolina -49th
    -Georgia -48th
    -Texas -47th
    -Virginia -44th
    If you are wondering, Wisconsin, with its collective barganing for teachers, is ranked 2nd in the country, how is this a bad thing?
    ———————————————————
    It may be politically incorrect but the truth of the matter is that those 5 states all have high numbers of minorities and illegals, Wisconsin does not.

    All of the smaller population mostly white northern states have higher scores than other states, just a fact of life.

  26. To the idiot earlier in the chain that said they aren’t taking away the union’s CBA rights just limiting it to wages:

    And what do you think the effect of that is?

    Bargaining on health benfits? Nope

    Bargaining on pension plans? Nope

    Bargaining on work rules? Nope

    That is taking away their right to bargain. Win a 5% raise the gov’t just takes it w/out negotiation from the pension plan. Win a 7% raise, the gov’t just takes it away by adding to the employee’s health contribution.

    your statement is like saying I still have free speech even though I can ONLY express my views by writing a letter to the editor in my town’s weekly newspaper and nowhere else.

  27. I have found that there are two people who hate unions: employers and people who have never been part of union.

    Oh and BTW, for those of you who would rather bash unions than actually take a look at the issues, Walker is trying to bust them by making them the fall guy for the REAL problems, two major obligations that the state has to pay AND a tax cut that he pushed through and another that he is about to sign that will cause a major budget shortfall (Sources: AP and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel).

    Also, stop listening to people who whine about how much more than public employees make over the private sector. In respect to ALL employees, yes, they do make more than the average BUT in respect to those of similar background AND education, they’re making less. Let’s not forget that the average private sector pay is based on computer programs AND burger flippers while the same thing can’t be said of public sector workers, who are more likely to require a degree to even get the job and take less in wages to do their job. You can complain about how their pay and pension but if you compare what they could make with private companies, it doesn’t compare.

    Oh and if you think that the government is stealing your money, please, by all means, found a city that doesn’t have a police and fire department and try to live without them. See if you can fund your own and pay people as little as they get AND no pension or healthcare benefits like a private company would do. See what quality of people you’d get to do the job. How about some of you who are too cowardly to enter the military. Think that you can live without the government “stealing” your money to protect your sorry ass from enemies, foreign or domestic? PUHLEEEZE.

  28. @ smacklayer who says:

    Ok, multi-millionaire nfl player and $30k/year school teacher showing solidarity. One year of his salary could pay for lifetime of a teacher’s earnings.
    This is a silly publicity stunt by the NFLPA. If Woodson really gave a rat’s ass about those teachers maybe he would donate some of this personal fortune to that teacher’s union.
    —————————————
    How do you know he hasn’t? I mean, Woodson recently gave 2 million dollars to a Michigan hospital.

    And what’s up with all the anger? Most people complain that professional athletes are selfish and they don’t care about the rest of us. Then when someone like Woodson takes sides with “the people,” you still complain.

    What is it? You just have to bitch about something?

  29. @ncsteeler

    I’m not passing judgment on whether it’s right or wrong (I don’t live in Wisconsin), but the business tax breaks are part of a coordinated effort to bring more businesses (and in theory more jobs and, later, tax revenue) to Wisconsin. The easiest way to get a business to relocate from a state like Illinois is to offer them a better deal, which is what Wisconsin has just done. Whether this leads to any/slight/moderate/expansive business growth remains to be seen.

    With these tax cuts came the need for revenue cuts. Again, I won’t pass judgment on whether it’s right or wrong to pick this particular group, but they’re the governor’s choice.

    As for collective bargaining, not having it will save the state money over time, this is reasonably indisputable. Whether that leads to a deterioration of education quality remains to be seen, just as whether those future savings are reallocated wisely or not (they are politicians after all) over time.

    I don’t know what these State Senators earn in a year, but it’s likely that they can’t stay in their hotel forever unless they’re receiving handouts from others, so despite the rallying, it’s likely to pass.

    Just as collective bargaining is likely to be restored as soon as Democrats control Wisconsin politics again.

  30. I’ll buy the “unions are ruining the country” talking points …AFTER we end corporate welfare for businesses {TAX BREAKS, public finacing of sports stadiums, outsourcing} & the people who ran the banks that needed taxpayer bailouts & bailouts for Wall Street, when those people are prosecuted & put in jail, … then we can talk about how “evil” unions are.

  31. ncsteeler says:
    Feb 21, 2011 1:17 PM
    Woodson is right. Why is it OK for firefighters to have collective barginning rights but not teachers? Why is OK for cops but not prison guards? (Oh yeah, some supported Walker, some didn’t.)

    While we’re at it why should a worker in the private sector have more rights than a worker in the public sector? If a private contractor ran the schools or the prisons – would those teachers or guards have more rights? Wouldn’t their benefits come from the same tax payers?

    Walker gave out business tax breaks totaling about $130M as soon as he walked in the door. Why were those OK but health care insurance for teachers not OK? Actually the state is not broke before the tax breaks they had a slight surplus.

    ____________________________________________________________________

    130m is 3.6% for the deficit. Not a big deal at all. These corporations actually generate jobs!

    While we’re at it why should a worker in the private sector have more rights than a worker in the public sector? If a private contractor ran the schools or the prisons – would those teachers or guards have more rights? Wouldn’t their benefits come from the same tax payers?

    Hmmm… What kind of rights? You mean the right to get paid and NOT go to work? No one wants to privatize these entities, but stop their crippling death grip that their union has on the states budget.

    My favorite:

    Why were those OK but health care insurance for teachers not OK?

    You are the first person that I’ve talked to that has said teachers will not have health care. Dumbest thing you wrote.

    Get to work teachers and democratic senators. It is appauling for you to compare yourselves to those in Egypt. “In Egypt protestors fight for democracy. In Madison, they fight against it.”

  32. Some of you think Woodson should have kept quiet because he’s just a football player and this fight is about taxpayer money? He didn’t forfeit his citizenship when joined the NFL, and he probably pays more taxes than anyone posting here. If he wants to express solidarity with the teachers’ union, that’s his right. Good for him!

  33. nfl4ever says:

    *********************

    Hate to tell you this but if you take away the “illegal” aliens and minorities from those places, you’d find that they were just as bad. Oh and you might look up how much of a problem they actually have before you spout off. You’ll find that there are places that actually rank high that have a higher SAT score than a few of the ones that you blame on the illegals and minorities.

  34. I think it’s funny that people at this site say that a NFL player can’t express his opinion. I read everyday us fan express our opinion. They have as much right as we do.

    You don’t have agree with everything but really can’t we all just get along. What a worrthless country we have become.

  35. Why doesn’t everyone wake up! It’s the middle class that pay just about all the taxes………Private sector and public sector. The middle class in general should stand together and let the Gov. know that they have had enough! If you want to cut something, then cut the benefits of those who sit around and do nothing and contribute nothing. Cut the welfare, and food stamps, and housing assistance, etc. Put a cap on all of that. Set a limit to how long and how much you can recieve. That is what the Gov. should be cutting.

  36. MDS–if a state governor can strip collective bargaining rights from a union, it threatens all unions’ collective bargaining rights. Those rights are guaranteed through statute, not via the Constitution or case law. Political success in Wisconsin (and the five other states that have looked at doing something similar) will impact other states. Woodson and the public employees’ unions in Wisconsin actually do have similar interests here.

    I do understand, though, that some people EARN THEIR WAY in life WITHOUT ANY HELP whatsoever, unlike the police and firemen who protect their property, the transportation departments that build and maintain their roads, and the public school teachers and administrators who educated them, etc. etc. etc. Maybe you don’t like how that water and electricity comes right into your house and everything?

  37. People need to recognize that unions keeps private sector in check with decent benefits, retirement accounts and work safety. With out the unions company that you work for will decrease all those with your paycheck!

    WAKE UP PEOPLE!! See the BIG picture… The dudes in the higher chair wants to eliminate Unions then eliminate minimum wage… now you’ll find yourself working more hours without overtime!

    THATS WHY WE NEED UNIONS!

  38. People need to recognize that unions keeps private sector in check with decent benefits, retirement accounts and work safety. With out the unions company that you work for will decrease all those with your paycheck!

    WAKE UP PEOPLE!! See the BIG picture… The dudes in the higher chair wants to eliminate Unions then eliminate minimum wage… now you’ll find yourself working more hours without overtime pay!

    THATS WHY WE NEED UNIONS!

  39. Also, it’s not “politically incorrect” to say that “minorities and illegals” are morons who can’t be educated. It’s actually racist? Do you only root for the white players in the league…or it is more the spectacle of African-Americans beating on each other that you like?

  40. To all of the mouth-breathers that can’t get your facts in a row: The teachers unions and state employees of Wisconsin agreed days ago to all of the cuts in the bill. Not a single person it out protesting trying to avoid taking their share of the the burden, and saying otherwise shows your complete ignorance of the situation.

    The protesters are there to protect the collective bargaining rights of those unions. Not only is the governor trying to strip them of their right to collectively bargain for anything but wages, he’s also limiting wage bargaining to keeping up with the cost of living index, he’s forcing the unions to vote on their existence every year, and he’s not allowing teachers or state employees to have their dues removed automatically for them from their paychecks.

    In other words, he’s union busting. And worse, he isn’t doing it to the two groups of unions that supported him in the election, just the other unions. It’s nothing but a political stunt that’s intended to hurt those who would oppose him; it’s a threat to not just working class families, but the very foundation of how democracy works. And Charles Woodson is on the right side of history here, and deserves praise, not the sideways glancing insults of people who apparently lack all comprehension of economics and history,

  41. Hmmm. I wonder, do you think the vast mojority of the people on this website are of a certain class?

    Keep up the good fight, Chuck.

    Forget these never-weres talking about football and politics. They know not what they speak of, just what they’re told.

  42. boonedigg ,

    Don’t you know that you’re going to bring too much logic to this conversation. We all want to be like South Carolina education wise.

    The more dumb people that you have, the less competition that you have for the fat cats who’ll continue to line their pockets while telling the little guy to “tighten” the belt. How about start by slashing government officials pay rates across the board down to $30,000 a year and taking away their benefits. Sounds like a reasonable place to start saving tax money.
    Let’s see who’d be ready to “tighten” the belt then.

  43. its time the public sector feels the pain that the private sector has since 08. If these states don’t fix their golden parachute pensions and double dipping employees they will go bankrupt. Teachers are just the first of many public sector employees that need to learn that it’s not all about you. Idiots gave the union too many benifits and now everyones paying for it. So either settle for less benifits now or the state will do what big auto did declare bankrupt and take away everything you had anyways.

  44. I wonder if the teachers agree with the NFLPA? A few teachers I know are the first to complain about professional athletes contracts. My guess is that after Charles added his two cents, they’re all on board.

  45. @ Clintonportishhead – So you found one correlation between higher economic times and equated it to Unions and the middle class. Kind of a irresponsible generality. I will educate the left wing minority on why and how unions were supposed to work. Basically, unions were put in place to fight and defend the rights of workers against businesses that were previously exploiting them. All in all, I agree with this as a check and balance measure. NOW, Unions are a hotbed of corruption as the largest unions hoard money and only support those legislators that are willing to put contracts in place for their benefit. Unions FORCE a large amount of businesses to incorporate pensions and benefits without any contributions from the employee which DOES NOT reflect the majority of the country. Unions FORCE some businesses to have employees pay dues to which they turn around pay their highest officials and funnel towards their favorite candidates. Basically, NO ONE hates unions, but no one was watching them as they became too powerful and engaged in needless contributions towards elections. Legislation should be enacted to limit the amount of involvement a union can do and give options to employees to opt out of joining them as they can use their money elsewhere to generate their own pension/retirement fund. Woodson is making the same, ignorant generality that the NFLPA is the same as the teacher’s union in WIS. Blame NAFTA and growing government as jobs are leaving and government isn’t in the “production” business. Kudos to the governor for doing the right thing as taxing more is for the stupid. Keep the NFL out of it as the majority of the NFL need to play as they are vastly too intellectually challenged to comprehend economics. Charles, just pay attention to jamming the receiver at the line of scrimmage and let the conservatives run this country….errrr….fix it…again!

  46. I won’t bother trying to add to the sharply contrasting views being expressed by users of this site. Instead, I’d like to offer a brief, personal example of the services that unions offer to their members.
    After serving in the Pacific Theatre during WWII, my Grandfather returned home to Chicago and joined a pipe-insulation union. He spent the next thirty years of his life as a union man, working on buildings around the Chicagoland area. It eventually came to the attention of this union that almost all of it’s members had begun developing serious medical conditions. It was around this time that studies linking asbestos exposure to serious health problems were first made truly public. Most of the union’s members developed Mesothelioma, while my Grandfather would eventually develop both Asbestosis and Parkinson’s disease. With the help of his union, my Grandfather received financial compensation, and had access to superior medical treatment for the rest of his life. For those that might still attempt to defend the rights of his employers, it’s important that you know that they, like many other employers in that profession, were well aware of the effects of Asbestos exposure, but withheld said information for years, until it was eventually brought out during trial.
    While I believe that everyone is entitled to their own political beliefs, I hope that you’ll take this story into consideration before assuming that all union men are Jimmy Hoffa.

  47. I can remember the days when blue collar folks used to be able to own a cabin by a lake, save for their kids college, and mom could stay home. They bought new cars every 3 years and shopped at department stores. They dined out once a week.

    And today?

    Department stores are almost gone because no one can afford them and the rich prefer Neiman Marcus. The rise of Wal Mart serves the new financial reality of those folks. Mom now works. College for the kids? Forget it. And a new car? Not going to happen ever.

    And yet you have folks on here who actually applaud the declining living standard in America! And the funny thing is almost all those folks are victims too. Brainwashed yes-but victims nonetheless.

  48. How about the fact that 3 of the 5 worst ACT scoring states do not have bargaining rights for teachers

    Only people who oppose seem to be those jealous

  49. @ nfl4ever

    Could you please address WHY minorities score lower? Could it be that FAR less money is funneled into schools that have higher percentages of minorities? Texas is a horrible state educationally and is about as right wing as you could get. Business flock here and the educational system is still horrible due to the tax code. Your post sounds like it’s blaming the victims of a completely biased and unequal system and not the creators of said system.

    Sidenote: I’d wager that a higher percentage of my black southern family has an undergrad degree than yours.

    @stull60060

    Dumbest post of the year. If you wipe out all public sector jobs, do you have any idea of how much unemployment would sky rocket? Teachers, garbage men, construction workers, etc are our neighbors and friends and provide vital services. These people are not crooks, they all work hard.

  50. @edgy – I understand your plight to all who hate unions, but I must warn you that you tread too far in support of our current union situation. To say that unions are great and without reproach is irresponsible as it is to say that ALL unions are bad regardless. You can’t deny that unions have become corrupt on a large scale as they are involved in vastly too many areas that DON’T help workers but rather further their own political agenda. Also, firemen and police are NOT all unionized but rather state employees SUPPORTED by all taxpayers. We all realize our tax dollars are meant to be spent for ALL to benefit from and not for a few. Why would I agree to pay for programs I can’t take advantage of. Unfortunately, unions have weasled their way into laws that only apply to those who joined their unions but at the expense of the taxpayer. Our teachers aren’t any better because we have unions, rather they are protected from termination to a greater degree. We have seen a decline in education in areas with HUGE union involvement as taxes are raised and the American dream is squandered. Set unions back to the days when they collected dues from willing employees to be represented against corruption. Whenever a unions become wealthy and their leadership becomes power hungry, they will always fail. Look out for the worker and only the worker and stay out of politics since they weren’t enacted to collect tax payer dollars to begin with.

  51. I live in South Carolina and can tell you EXACTLY what the story is here.

    The Democrats ran the state forever and never lost an election. Then the Democratic Party (in the 60’s) became the party of equality and civil rights for blacks. And that was it in SC for them. The GOP appealed to the racists in the state (and there a TON of them) and they won elections by promoting things like the confederate flag on the state capitol (among other “code” issues)

    Of course the poor whites are being played for suckers as the REAL power behind the GOP here is big business. SC purposely keeps it’s kids uneducated so they don’t complain about the crappy $8 an hour jobs they are destined to hold for the rest of their lives. But of course thats $1 an hour more than the black folks make and thats good enough for the trailer dwelling neanderthals that make up the voting electorate here.

    Any other South Carolina questions? Feel free to ask!

  52. As a teacher and a Green Bay Packer Fan let me say , “Thank You” Charles Woodson. One of the first posters had it right, when teachers lose children lose and when children lose, our future is less. I invite any of you negative morons to go to a school and see what teachers are doing for your children. I invite you to educate tomorrow’s future. What price do you put on our future? Taking away or limiting a group’s right to negotiate their working wages and conditions is anti-consitututional and goes against all this country was founded on. I notice Mr. Walker, Governor sir that you too are paid by tax payers, are you limiting your pay and benefits like you are asking the teachers, firefighters and police? Let’s see how well people’s homes are defended or saved when you have less firefighters or policemen on the job. Today’s problems, ie, the recession was brought on by GREED of the WEALTHY which Mr. Walker is one. Destroy unions and as poster said good bye America’s middle class. I hate idiots like this Governor who has never even been in a classroom!!

  53. xxwhodatxx says: Feb 21, 2011 1:48 PM

    “Unions will be the downfall of America”

    Unions are what created the Middle Class in this country. If that’s a “downfall” then I’ll take it.

    I’m quite happy being a part of the Middle Class and owning my own home, having enough food on the table every night, and being able to send my kids to college.

    If you want to live shucking fries at McDonald’s for minimum wage, that’s your business.

  54. stull60060,
    WOW! Public employees, like teachers, don’t produce anything? State employees are “stealing money” from the private sector? Evidently, you don’t think that an education, fire or police protection, or a secure prison system is very important. You tell me who is going to pay for this if the taxpayers don’t. I’m sure you tea baggers think everything should be privatized. Great, now find a person willing to put up with inmates and the hazards that go along with it for… how much money? What about teachers? Who is going to be willing to spend tens of thousands of dollars so they can make teacher’s salary–without the benefits they currently have? These people will come to your place of employment, with a college degree, and want YOUR job.
    Be thankful that there are people who are willing to put up with prisoners and the current generation of children -many of them don’t have a person in their lives worthy of being called a parent.
    I’ve been a factory worker, foundry worker, carpenter, and salesman. Each one of those jobs had their own challenges, pros, and cons. Now, I am a teacher. I decided I wanted to make a difference in people’s lives. This job, like the others I had, has its own challenges, pros, and cons. I took a significant pay decrease to do this, with the idea of more job stability and benefits. I have never been in a more financially stressful situation than I am right now. I can say that the private sector jobs that I worked in were MUCH better paying, even though the benefits weren’t as good, my net income was way more then. I’m telling you this from experience.
    By the way, Gov. Walker isn’t qualified to substitute teach at the school I work at, he doesn’t have an economics degree ( or any degree for that matter), so you tell me how he is qualified to make economic decisions that impact me!

    Go Packers!

  55. firesparano says: Feb 21, 2011 2:32 PM

    “Basically, unions were put in place to fight and defend the rights of workers against businesses that were previously exploiting them.”

    Oh but, nothing like that would ever happen today, right?

    Take off the rose-colored glasses, and quit believing ever bit of spoon fed crapola you see on Faux News.

  56. @dcipher80 – Texas taxes are NOT the problem for your argument against education. Texas doesn’t pay state tax and uses property taxes to pay teachers which have a very good base salary in comparison to most states. The money is pumped into schools per the zoning laws enacted and Dallas ISD, which has a huge amount of funding from county taxpayers, is one of the lowest performing districts in the entire state of Texas next to inner city Houston districts. They are also the two largest inhabitants of minorities. These are FACTS and not reasons. I don’t blame minorities for these issues but rather state the coincidences for this. Also, businesses only contribute to counties they reside in. Dallas county has lost businesses due to high taxes and the metroplex has expanded north of Plano. Dallas ISD is also the worst county in Texas for debt as they will have to close some schools and fire thousands of teachers for their inept spending they have contributed to. Dallas county also voted majority Democrat in the last election. Dallas county has the second highest crime rate in the state even with San Antonio vastly outnumbering them in population. Texas education is actually vastly better than any state west of them but people see Dallas kids and think they are all the same. I live here, my wife’s a school teacher and I work in Dallas county. Stop making assumptions and do your homework.

  57. firesparano says: Feb 21, 2011 2:32 PM

    @ Clintonportishhead – So you found one correlation between higher economic times and equated it to Unions and the middle class. Kind of a irresponsible generality.

    ——

    No. Kind of the whole point of the exercise. However I can find many more. Women forced into the workforce to make ends meet at home? Yup. Savings rates at all time lows? Yup. Total debt as against take home pay? Yup. Management making 100 times more than workers (as opposed to 10x more in the 50’s)? Yup.

    Don’t tangle with me wingnut. You are out of your league.

  58. There are two kinds of unions – private sector, like I belong to, and public sector, like Charlie’s heroes belong to.
    People in the private sector like me PRODUCE wealth in that we build steel mills, paper mills, and the like that then go on to MAKE money.

    Money is good. I like money

    Public sector unions on the other hand CONSUME wealth – the taxpayers’ money.

    Governor Walker also offered no furloughs or layoffs in this hateful piece of legislation. How many union construction workers out there like me ever got such a deal?

    We have our disagreement, and that’s fine, but to compare the freely elected Governor of Wisconsin to adolf hitler, who was responsible for the holocaust and responsible for World War II which resulted in the deaths of over 50,000,000 people is outrageous, incredibly irresponsible and is a slap in the face to those who suffered through it. Anyone who does that should be ashamed of themselves, but they probably aren’t.

    If you teachers ever go back to work maybe you should teach the kids about WWII, because they don’t seem to have a clue.

    Charles – I am a packer fan, but – I’ll see you at the Christmas party and I will be wearing mistletoe on the back of my suit coat.

    get it?

    (The above courtesy of Richard The First Daley)

  59. Unions are rotting out the country.
    It’s great to see the vast majority starting to wake up and take this country back.

    NFL fans will see this in the new collective bargaining agreement as well. The owners are taking all the risks financially and will make sure they get they get the higher percentage of the revenue , NOT the employees!

  60. firesparano says: Feb 21, 2011 2:49 PM

    @edgy – I understand your plight to all who hate unions,

    **********************

    First of all, learn to read because I said no such thing.

    In the second place, you and others don’t seem to realize that any so-called corruption or abuse that the unions supposedly have came because of the companies that forced them into existence. Someone mentioned unions goons, which were a response to company goons, whose purpose was to beat up on the general population to keep them from joining the unions and to eliminate the organizers by ANY MEANS NECESSARY. Most of the people who hate unions really have NO CLUE about the history of labor in this country and don’t realize that it was only 100 years ago that most people here would have NEVER gotten past the 5th grade until they started putting in child labor laws and getting kids into schools and out of the sweatshops that would have embarrassed the Chinese.

    If management would have ever dealt fairly with their employees, there would have never been a need to have unions and they’re reaping what they sowed. You can piss and moan about how bad the unions have become but it’s management that’s been the worst and they continue to be that way. For companies that DON’T have unions, those employees probably haven’t seen pay raises in years or if they did, it certainly didn’t come close to what their managers were getting while they were claiming poverty for the company.

    You also might want to go back and re-read the fact that I talked about public sector and I didn’t say they were unionized (Stop assuming). I merely pointed out to the IDIOT that talked about the government stealing money and the public sector employees. Sure, a city could out-source a lot of their work and the private sector could take anyone off the street and put them to work but would that necessarily be any better?

  61. Do some of you even know what’s actually going on in Wisconsin? The Gov. exaggerated concerns and ginned up an economic emergency that did not exist so that he could do the statewide economic version of declaring martial law. Essentially, this act would allow him to take away the public employees ability to bargain collectively, and to clear the way for the Gov. to slash their benefits.

    To quote an article on talkingpointsmemo, “The reality is radically different. Unlike true austerity measures — service rollbacks, furloughs, and other temporary measures that cause pain but save money — rolling back worker’s bargaining rights by itself saves almost nothing on its own. But Walker’s doing it anyhow, to knock down a barrier and allow him to cut state employee benefits immediately.” In other words, rolling back bargaining rights in and of itself does almost nothing to save the state money. The only way the state saves any money out of this is if they follow this act up by cutting benefits like health care.

    Even worse is that none of this was necessary. One final quote, “this broadside comes less than a month after the state’s fiscal bureau — the Wisconsin equivalent of the Congressional Budget Office — concluded that Wisconsin isn’t even in need of austerity measures, and could conclude the fiscal year with a surplus. In fact, they say that the current budget shortfall is a direct result of tax cut policies Walker enacted in his first days in office.”

    In other words, unlike many areas, Wisconsin would have been fine and their budget would have help up without dramatic cuts to public services like firefighters or police officers (some areas have had to make huge cuts in these areas to make ends meet). Instead, the Gov. came in and immediately got a tax cut passed to improve his own popularity (who doesn’t like lower taxes?). This tax cut created the budget shortfall in question. the Gov. then used this shortfall to enact austerity measures in order to strip the public employees union of its bargaining power so that he could take away their benefits. This wasn’t a necessary act. It’s a con job. I’m not a member of a union, but I’d be damned if I put up with that kind of treatment. If you don’t want the teachers to strike, don’t mistreat them like this. Look, no one likes having to pay taxes, but it’s those taxes that pay for the services we all want. If you want to have police to keep our neighborhoods safe, firefighters to put out fires, quality roads to drive on, and any number of public services we all take for granted then you need to understand that the funds for these things don’t just magically appear. All of these services are paid for by our taxes. The governor’s actions remind me of a family where they decide the mother shouldn’t have to work, and then to make up for that loss of income decides that the kids don’t need to wear shoes or a jacket on their way to school in the winter. Before you do something that reduces your income, you really need to know how it will affect your family, or in this case your state. You don’t make a selfish decision and then make others pay for it, only to blame them when they don’t just shut up and take it.

  62. I don’t understand all the hate towards Charles for stating his opinion. Everyone telling him to shut the hell up because this doesn’t concern him and telling him to stick to football is just ignorant. Maybe he’s not an expert on the topic, but neither is anyone on here who’s bashing him. Fact of the matter is that he is a Wisconsin resident and he has school age children so this does actually concern him. He has the right to say what he wants and you have the right to disagree with him, that’s the beauty of the First amendment. How about a little civility on here.

  63. PFTiswhatitis says:

    Unions are the American problem. They need to be history.
    ————————————————-
    Yes, there are some problems with unions. But many people have problem children, too. Would you tell them their kids need to be history? Or would you suggest they work on helping their kids do better?

    Like government, unions serve a purpose. Just because unions don’t perform their purpose as well as they should doesn’t mean we should get rid of them. You may resent government, but it’s better than anarchy. And you may not like unions, but you wouldn’t be thrilled to return to life before labor laws when you and your 10-year-old could work 20-hour days for pennies and get tossed to the curb if a faulty machine cut off your arm or you got too old or sick to perform.

  64. dcipher80 says:
    Feb 21, 2011 2:48 PM
    @ nfl4ever

    Could you please address WHY minorities score lower? Could it be that FAR less money is funneled into schools that have higher percentages of minorities? Texas is a horrible state educationally and is about as right wing as you could get. Business flock here and the educational system is still horrible due to the tax code. Your post sounds like it’s blaming the victims of a completely biased and unequal system and not the creators of said system.

    Sidenote: I’d wager that a higher percentage of my black southern family has an undergrad degree than yours.
    ——————————————————-
    Could it be that the average (certainly not all) Minority families/households just don’t put the same value on education as other groups do?

    Most all schools are underfunded, in white areas they do a lot of fundraising, from what I understand they have a hard time doing that in minority area schools in the city I live in.

    I’m not knocking anyone here.

    As for you and your family and your degrees? I would not take that wagre if I were you BUT I’m glad that you and your family members earned those degrees.

  65. @montymontana15 says

    Shouldn’t you be grading papers at 3pm on a Monday afternoon?

    The entitlement that Union workers feel they deserve is sickening. You got your weekend, you got your (more than) fair wages. Oh and you’ve got your taxpayer paid Pensions – something that more than 90% of other Americans don’t have. Suck it up and deal with it, because that’s what every other NON-UNION worker has been doing for years.

  66. btkoten says: Feb 21, 2011 1:28 PM

    “Any one who works for the government is beholding to me and others like me. We work for the private sector. Money is stolen from us by the government to pay the salaries and benefits of employees hired by the government. We are working families. We are the producers. We contribute to our own retirement and own health care insurance. We’ll be damned if we’re going to pay more taxes, take less pay and lose our jobs in order to keep the moochers in their over paid, under performing government jobs. The government has no money and doesn’t produce a thing. It exists by stealing the money that working families with or without children have EARNED. ”

    Then the government takes that money and uses it to pay teachers, firefighters, cops, construction workers etc to keep your streets clean, your child educated, your water safe from bacteria and other posions. If you have no taxes, you get no services. Have fun lugging your garbage to the non-existent landfill and pumping your own morning shower water out of the ground.
    ______________________________
    Exactly. Besides, it’s not just private citizens that benefit from these public goods and services. The private sector relies on them as well. Just how productive would the almighty private sector be without the infrastructure provided and maintained by the public sector? No roads to transport your goods on? No clean water for your facilities? No police officers to prevent the desperate masses from rising up and taking everything you’ve worked for? That’s just a few of countless examples that could be mentioned. Some of these people need to realize that the same things they want to see in their ideal world are the very things that have made places like Somalia the chaotic wastelands they are now.

  67. This is going to be one of those issues that no matter what your opinion is, about half the people will disagree. I personally don’t agree with him since he is a multi millionaire and has no responsibility or concept on what it takes to balance a state budget…but I respect his right to support fellow unions.

  68. aldavisisthenfl says: Feb 21, 2011 3:34 PM

    Unions are rotting out the country.
    It’s great to see the vast majority starting to wake up and take this country back.

    NFL fans will see this in the new collective bargaining agreement as well. The owners are taking all the risks financially and will make sure they get they get the higher percentage of the revenue , NOT the employees!
    _________________________
    Your post is pretty darned ironic. Think about things clearly for a moment. The golden days that conservatives love to talk about were the same days where union membership and union influence were at their highest. Now, when union membership and influence have dropped rather significantly, the same conservatives are blaming unions for what’s going on. Really? How about we start putting the blame where it belongs? For instance, how about we start blaming the short-sighted business execs who stopped focusing on the long-term viability of their companies and the goods and services they provided, and instead chose to focus on quarterly reports intended to boost their current stock valuation? Why the change? Simple, because corporations replaced their execs who had skills specialized in their industry with execs with skills specialized in the financial sector, and then tied their bonuses to the stock prices of the company. In doing so, they changed the incentives of their execs from ensuring the long-term viability of the company to the short-term stock prices. I’m a pro-business guy with a degree in economics, but even I know that when a company is in trouble you blame the decision makers, not the ones who carry out those policies.

  69. @1historian who says:

    There are two kinds of unions – private sector, like I belong to, and public sector, like Charlie’s heroes belong to.

    People in the private sector like me PRODUCE wealth in that we build steel mills, paper mills, and the like that then go on to MAKE money.
    ———————————
    So what are you saying? That teachers aren’t as valuable as construction workers?

    Someone had to educate the folks who bankroll these projects—steel mills, paper mills, etc—so that they could pay you. My guess is that those who pay you are able to do so because they were educated enough to attend college.

    Once in college they read books, took classes, met all the right people and cemented connections that would serve them in the business world.

    Most of us like money. Whats more, most of us need money. All of us. Even teachers.

  70. packersrule says:
    “You don’t have agree with everything but really can’t we all just get along. What a worrthless country we have become.”

    If you dont like this country, the oppourtunities it has provided you and you find it worthless,
    why dont you take your worthless behind someplace more suitable to your standards?

    In the military, I always was reminded when I came home that I was honored to sever and protect my country even with fools like you crying “worthless country”. You sir are a disgrace but none the less many of my brothers have died just so you can express your wonderful opinion that exudes your gratitide.

  71. Despite the non-stop media attention on this issue, I just can’t take the protesters seriously here.

    They should read “Boy Who Cried Wolf.” For years now, every single thing a Republican has proposed has been met with outrage and shock and protests and bricks through windows.. This seems no different. They have only themselves to blame.

    Oh, and if they had a PLAN for balancing the state budget that may help. Besides just saying “don’t touch OUR stack, Jack.”

  72. You know, the Gov. of Wisconsin needs to stop and think about something very clearly. Employees aren’t as stuck where they are (geographically speaking) as they once were. I went to a school that was known for producing teachers, and many of my friends were in fact education majors. One fact kept popping up in my discussions with them. The prospects for teachers varied from area to area. Places like North Carolina and Virginia that were facing growing populations and budding economies were in desperate need of quality teachers. As such, they were offering the equivalent of signing bonuses and even moving expenses to teachers willing to relocate there. If I were from Wisconsin, I’d be less worried about teachers using their sick and personal days to protest their poor treatment at the hands of the Gov. and state government, and more worried that other areas of the country might use this issue to lure away the best and brightest teachers in Wisconsin.

  73. “We’re broke. We don’t have the money,” says Walker. Yet he and the Republican legislature are giving $117 million in tax breaks to businesses. That’s like a landlord with cash income problems telling some of his clientele that he’s broke but he’s going to lower their rent. Yeah, sure – if he’s getting a little “honey” from them on the side, maybe. Don’t worry Wisconsin, we’ll soon have lots more minimum wage jobs with few if any benefits, and everything will be great! And if it isn’t, we can blame the unions – oops, they’ll be gone. Well, we can blame the liberals – oops, they’re out of power. Well, we can always blame “the media.” Pay no attention to the millionaires behind the curtain!

  74. Unions are imperfect but not as imperfect as an economy without them. The problem for unions is that they don’t have their own network like FoxNews to demonize their opponents.

  75. @ ham1 who says:

    If you dont like this country, the oppourtunities it has provided you and you find it worthless,
    why dont you take your worthless behind someplace more suitable to your standards?
    —————————————–

    Did you read his entire statement? He refers to the lack of civil discourse in this country as “worthless,” not the country as a whole.

    I applaud your patriotism, but please understand that, for some of us, ‘love of country’ isn’t defined by a rose colored view of your country. This is the greatest country on earth, for sure. But there are very many flaws these days. Chief among those flaws is the divisive nature of our discourse. Most times what could be an intelligent, helpful conversation quickly turns into stupid name-calling. I believe this is to what the original poster was referring.

  76. Reading these comments, my longstanding interest in football wavers. What happened to fans who stood by their players? For a community that stood by its teachers?

    With some exceptions, most fans support billionaire owners over the players that, for the most part, do not make the millions everyone claims they do. Each measure of player life shows that players get more divorces than the American average, have more psychological problems than the average American, the majority of them go into bankruptcy, develop all sorts of medical problems, etc.

    While Governor Walker has not thought to halt the diminishing corporate taxes, which have been reduced every year in WI (I believe they’ve actually evaporated entirely for quite some time now), everyone is sure that the teachers (who have already agreed to take paycuts, pension cuts and pay more for insurance) shouldn’t be able to have any collective bargaining. They have agreed to take less money, but that’s not enough, as the recent economic situation is being used as a mask to do something the right has been doing for a while — diminishing union rights.

    And, in contrast to some of the idiotic comments made by some uneducated players, Charles Woodson actually says something worthwhile and admirable. And people here say just generally ignorant things like “why doesn’t he put his money towards the cause” or “he should just shut up”. What does that even mean? How do you put your money towards the cause of retaining collective bargaining rights?

    It’s amazing that after 8 years of entirely republican rule, which has led to disaster, people are still such supporters of their masters, butt-boys for the ruling class. It shows in the way fans act now (people rooting for injuries — absolutely disgusting), in the politics of our time and beyond.

    Want to see a place where union rights have been abolished? Check out places like South America. Want to live there?

  77. I now remember why I don’t like teachers, and I am one. (Granted, for a private school, where we do much more, for much less $$). I don’t know what these teachers are smoking, but annual avg. salary of 46k/yr and an average state compensation package of 89k/yr (i.e., salary and benefits), I think these public teachers and their union are out to lunch. (Ok, that may actually be true: On the steps of the State Capital right now.) It is actually not the salary which the Governor is going after with regard to collective bargaining, but all the expensive stealth benefits. Secondly, please distinguish between a public union and a private union. In this day and age, there is no place for a public union, and collective bargaining by publicly-funded (TAXPAYER-funded) employees should be inadmissable. That’s sort of like a spoiled 10yr. old assuming he has the natural “right” to negotiate the allowance he gets from his parents (in a time when one or both of them is layed off and is struggling to make ends meet.)

    It would be one thing if the state drastically reduced the salary and benefits of the teachers, but they already are higher than they should be, even after the cuts. I mean, when the average annual compensation in the Milwaukee Public School system is over 100k/yr per teacher, as it is now (see maciverinstitute report), then it is time for a change.

    And teachers, please stop with your deceitful “It’s all about the kids” line. Seriously. The kids nor their taxpaying parents who fund your overpriced arses have nothing to do with it. There is a reason why according to the most recent international OECD rankings, the USA ranks #33 in reading, #27 in math, and #22 in science….and it starts with the public school system. Time to move to a gradual privatization of the education system in America, and force schools and their teachers to actually have to compete for students and their parent’s money.

  78. dwhitehurst, those are good arguments, well-argued, and quite reasonable.

    No wonder some dogmatic mouth-breather gave it a thumbs down, probably without even reading all of it.

  79. I love it when these hyper patriotic, love it or leave it types pipe up with the ol’, “You know candy-ass, I fought for the rights that made this country great, the ones I really wish you didn’t have and don’t really need.”

    At any rate, there’s more going on in WI than squashing the collective bargaining rights of people who tend not to vote Republican in very large numbers. Among other things tucked into the act Walker is trying to ram through is a provision that let’s him start selling off state assets — without taking bids — in anyway that suits him. Well, technically, it will be one of those eeeeevil gov’t bureaucrats who make the call on making no-bid deals on things like power plants.

    In fact, I suspect the CB fight was designed to keep the spotlight off of even more odious provisions.

  80. bigelk
    Do you live in Wisconsin you sanctimonious ass?
    Here is something liberal wienies hate, facts
    In Wisconsin, private sector workers make 74% of their state-level public sector counterparts. This is the 48 th worst pay differential in the nation and
    clearly shows that the public sector employee unions aren’t hurting for better pay or benefits.
    STFU if you think I should have to pay these, lying to get out of work, asses. I have seen one woman brag that if it wasn’t for the benefits she got her children wouldn’t have got braces trips to Disney World and their video games system. This is because she didn’t have to pay much for health care or retirement benefits
    Thanks for thinking I should have to pay for this douche
    Same for you Woodson what about the working people that have to pay these whining scum.
    Hell pay for mine Charles you can afford it let’s redistribute your wealth don’t take any huge tax breaks I bet you get

  81. boonedigg says:
    Feb 21, 2011 12:38 PM
    Only 5 states do not have collective bargaining for educators and have deemed it illegal. Those states and their ranking on ACT/SAT scores are as follows:
    -South Carolina -50th
    -North Carolina -49th
    -Georgia -48th
    -Texas -47th
    -Virginia -44th
    If you are wondering, Wisconsin, with its collective barganing for teachers, is ranked 2nd in the country, how is this a bad thing?
    ————————————————–
    I thought Mississippi was 50th. I don’t live there anymore, but South Carolina’s unofficial state motto (and any true Sandlapper can swear to this) is

    “Thank God for Mississippi”

    Because we’re always 49th in everything.

  82. @ClintonPortisheadd –

    You said:

    No. Kind of the whole point of the exercise. However I can find many more. Women forced into the workforce to make ends meet at home? Yup. Savings rates at all time lows? Yup. Total debt as against take home pay? Yup. Management making 100 times more than workers (as opposed to 10x more in the 50′s)? Yup.

    Don’t tangle with me wingnut. You are out of your league.

    ———

    So, per your “wingnut” explanation, you arrive to believe that having dual incomes to support a family is bad in comparison to yesteryears, low saving’s rates (unfounded), and higher pay for management.

    To educate you, all issues you mention were a result of growing government. Public sector jobs and administrations set the price point and not the consumer. Dual incomes exist due to inflation to which government allowed to spiral out of control with their “Great Society” ignorance. Whereas your check in the 40’s and 50’s was taxed much less, growing government is now in need of more taxed dollars to pay for worthless programs. Since there are less options for consumers, costs rise as supply and demand isn’t the model used anymore.

    Savings issues are also a result of less “take home” pay. The 401k plans allow consumers to personally invest that vastly trumps savings accounts and social security. Both of those are illusions and unsustainable as, you guessed it, government set the price point instead of the consumer. Whereas social security and savings bonds are regulated and offer little return when eligible, 401k plans can offer vast wealth in a third the time when the consumer invests pre-taxed dollars since it is an investment into the publicly traded companies.

    Management making a 100 times more… Is your complaint that management should make less or should your complaint be that we all should make more collectively…sounds like socialism to me, but I will give you the benefit of the doubt. Upper management makes more as companies have consolidated efforts to one person vice doing so over several. Technology is a HUGE reason for this. Where 1 person can do the work of 10 now as per the 50’s. Case in point, technology and the oil industry are the biggest recipients of such technological advances to which are the two largest industries in our country if not the world.

    Bottom line, I am all for companies growing and becoming successful regardless of pay as long as it is not at the expense of the employee…hence the enactment of CREDIBLE, RESPONSIBLY run unions to which we see less of everyday.

    Also, look at the source of the problem and not the surface and you will see the ultimate infringement on our liberties to be growing government. Don’t think for a second that government protects people and creates a better standard of living. They throw money and empty promises at issues instead of responsible ethics to which the rest of us have no problem living by. Social decline starts with the individual and then is permeated and exploited by government to which idiots buy into so they don’t have to work for it.

    So, this “wingnut” is vastly more intelligent than you probably could admit to. So what about being in your league is so appealing? Moving on…

  83. @edgy –
    edgy says:
    Feb 21, 2011 1:36 PM
    I have found that there are two people who hate unions: employers and people who have never been part of union.

    I said:

    @edgy – I understand your plight to all who hate unions,

    You said:

    First of all, learn to read because I said no such thing.

    Hmmm, I guess going back and reading what you wrote isn’t a common practice. I really felt no need to continue reading your diatribe as it started with a fallacy. Learn to be credible and then you may actually attain credibility…hence the word! I am now dumber from attempting to read your posts. Thanks

  84. Hey, firesparano. I ONLY quoted the first part but I was talking about was further down, To say that unions are great and without reproach is irresponsible as it is to say that ALL unions are bad regardless. YOU said that and I never even said anything of the sort or even implied it in my conversation and to say so only shows that YOU are not only dumber for reading my post but also for WRITING YOUR OWN FRIGGING POST.

    I suppose that for someone who is so obviously ignorant and anti-union, I should have went further down and quoted every sentence so you understood but what the hell, I’ve now learned what you’re all about.

  85. BTW, for those who believe that unions have been killing states, let’s look at what some research has found about how this has “hurt” when you compare states and their collective bargaining rights. Seems like they’re not the Satan that conservatives claim that they are:

    We found that on average, the budget gaps of states with and without collective bargaining for public employees are similar in 2011:

    * The 9 states with no collective bargaining rights for any public employees face an average budget shortfall of 16.5 percent in the current fiscal year, while the 15 states (including the District of Columbia) with collective bargaining for all public employees face an average budget shortfall of 16.2 percent.
    * For the 42 states (including the District of Columbia) with some (or all) collective bargaining rights for some (or all) public workers, the 2011 budget gap averages 16.6 percent.

    * The 31 states (including the District of Columbia) with collective rights for state workers face an average budget gap of 17.6 percent while those without rights for state workers face an average budget shortfall of 15.1 percent. These numbers are all very close.

    The point is, the right of public workers to unionize is not driving the fiscal crisis of states. [Policy Matters Ohio,12/30/10]

  86. So the Government has stolen our childrens future by fighting a war over WMD’s (they werent’ there), our war budget could fund schools for years, but then society would be smart enough to know that our own government has been stealing from us all along! Remind me why we ‘borrow’ our money from the ‘federal reserve’? The value of our dollar has declined 95% since we started ‘borrowing’ from the ‘FED’. Wake up america, welcome to the New World Order!!!

  87. @edgy –

    Ok, I must admit you are comedy. You apparently didn’t take reading comprehension in school since you repeated my statement and didn’t understand it AT ALL:

    To say that unions are great and without reproach is irresponsible as it is to say that ALL unions are bad regardless.

    I will dumb it down a little. Saying all unions are good is wrong and saying all unions are bad is also wrong….ok, now you get it…good! Let’s continue…

    You base your assumptions that unions that exist in favor in some locales must be the reason for success in business. Wonderful Politifact numbers you pulled to make a drowned out embellished point. Sorry I am smart for that and please go back to school to assist with economics AND your issue with reading comprehension.

    Funny, how you contradict yourself post after post and then have the audacity to call me ignorant. Hey pot this is kettle! NOW I am vastly dumber for reading your post so please don’t post again as I couldn’t handle the drooling that you must be affected by.

  88. The NFLPA is a private-union, not a public one. The WI teachers assoc. is a public-union, not a private one.

    Again, the crucial distinction in many of the posts here that is being skued or ignored is precisely this difference between public-sector unions and private-sector unions. Why? Either posters here really don’t understand the difference and its significance, or they do understand the difference, but do not want other readers to know this (probably because they’re members of a public-union.) For those who wish to understand all this, just google the article title “The trouble with Public Sector Unions” on nationalaffairs.com blog

    Public-sector unions now have a great total membership in the US than private-sector unions. Hence, they also have enormous influence in terms of state government spending, as well as state/national politics. (Can you guess which major political party is in bed with the public-unions? Hmmm?)

    As it pertains to WI, this is NOT a matter of Republican vs. Democrat. This is NOT a matter of the Limbaugh/Beck/Fox News followers vs. all the mainstream news tv/newspaper media followers. Rather, this IS a matter of the public-sector job force/union (funded by the taxpayer) vs. the private-sector job force (whose taxes fund the public-sector job force). Whether you are Republican, Democrat, or Independent is completely secondary to what really are the two sides in this fight, a fight which has not merely state implications now, but will have national implications in the future. This IS a matter of the public-sector unions vs. the taxpaying citizen (including those taxpaying citizens who are members of a private-sector union). I fully support private-sector unions. I fully reject public-sector unions. So did FDR himself!!!

    Obama can come to WI and spout a half-truth that is is all an “assault on unions.” It is NOT an assault on private-sector unions, but rather public ones. And the only true “assault” going on here is by the public-sector unions over against the taxpaying citizen, including those taypaying citizens who are members of a private-sector union. By such unrestricted collective bargaining between a public-union and the public government, which the public union and Obama/Democrats want to preserve at all costs (since this is their largest voting block), the taxpayer PAYING FOR IT ALL, the one who is really the employer ultimately, is excluded from the process of having any say in what is paid a public employee in terms of wages and benefits.

    This is a fleecing of the American taxpayer. But of course, if you are a public-union member, no doubt you will reply to my post by simply labeling me a Tea Bagger, a Republican, or a Beck/Limbaugh/Fox News disciple, all of the things I am not.

  89. Let me guess every Tea bagger and other union bashers would porbably say the brave union members of NYFD,NYPD,Port Authority,and others are a bunch of overpaid cry babies who want to much from the taxpayers. I wonder how many corporate goons thanked those brave souls on 9-11. Remember nonunion middle class people out there every benefit you have is because of the unions. Holidays,overtime,minimum wage,vacations,insurance,pensions,safety regulations,child labor,and many other benefits are provided thanks to unions. Just take some time and educate yourself on how well employees in America were treated before unions.

  90. nfl4ever: so your saying you can’t teach minorities and illegals is that right! that’s why the scores are down! there down cause you bigot rednecks like being stupid!!!

  91. firesparano says: Feb 22, 2011 4:59 PM

    To say that unions are great and without reproach is irresponsible as it is to say that ALL unions are bad regardless.

    *******************

    Again, you repeat YOUR stupid statement and try to pin it on me. I said no such thing, you boob and if YOU think I did then it’s YOU that needs reading comprehension lessons. I mentioned union twice in the whole statement that you talked about and the rest was about public employees and NOT unions. NOT once did I say that they were great or without reproach or are you using your hatred of unions as a way of implying that anyone who says anything that’s contrary to your anti-union opinion is saying that they’re great or beyond approach? Please, READ what I said in THAT STATEMENT and tell me where I said that unions were great and beyond reproach. Not only did I not use those sentiments but I didn’t even use the words. Hell, you even went so far as to try to say that I was talking as if police and firemen were all in unions and I never even used the word union and them in the same sentence. My points were about PUBLIC employees, even those that aren’t part of unions. They’re being scape-goated by the Republicans, who blame them for all their state’s ills when they don’t even come close to being the biggest problem in their state’s budget mess.

    Of course, I understand why you hate FACTS because facts get in the way of your diatribe. Like the fact that Policy Matters Ohio is NOT Politifact. Hell, I know that right wingers hate Politifact because they point out LIES and mistakes but because they spend no time looking there, they don’t realize that they call out both sides. It just happens that a person like Bachmann makes so many mistakes that she’s there more often than others on the left but make no mistake, they’ve taken Obama and the left on, as well. If you go there right now, there are 4 Pants On Fire, 1 for an email, 2 from Republicans and other from a Democrat. They rated a couple of Conservatives as having TRUE statements while the best that any Liberal got was MOSTLY TRUE. You’ll see a mix of both sides on that page and they’ve called them all out, including giving Obama a FALSE on his statement. Yeah, they really play favorites there.

    I have only posted a couple of messages and I haven’t contradicted myself — only boobs like you. Too many people like you want to claim that the unions are bloated with money from dues and that it goes up the chain but having been part of a union, I can tell you that I never paid anything near what people claim that the unions charge for dues and the only action that we ever had was over benefits and nothing else. The union made concessions on pay and working conditions and rather than be satisfied with 90% of a win, management went for the whole enchilada and ended up paying for increased wages, better working conditions AND better benefits because they got greedy.

    I’m not saying that all unions are great because some have severe problems but most of them are doing what they were intended but because they want better working conditions, management has made them Satan and keep threatening to shut down their businesses rather than make it safer for them to do their job (an empty threat when you consider that a West Virginia mining company has to get their coal from West Virginia). The unions that cover those workers haven’t been fighting to get them more money and benefits as much as they’ve been trying to get safer working conditions that would severely curtail the kind of accidents that have UNNECESSARILY taken so many lives over the years. Management figures that it’s cheaper to fight the unions and great political palms rather than spend the money to save lives. Yeah, that’s worth defending, isn’t it….

    I’m sure that one day that guys like you will get their wish and the unions will be gone and on that day, this country will turn into China and you’ll no longer have any rights and not only won’t you get a pay raise (unless you’re in upper management), you won’t have benefits and you might as well start smoking again because the working conditions will become as bad as they were in the 1800s and early 1900s. What makes me laugh is that at one point in the early 2000s, the one group that wanted to gain access to union membership was lower management because their bosses started treating them like they were doing to their non-management employees and they didn’t like it when the shoe was on the other foot. Of course, once their bosses got wind of it and fired them, that hurt the movement.

    One thing, independent studies have found that like businesses that are non-union and situated near union shops have benefits, wages and working conditions that are close to union shops so that they can keep their employees while businesses without unions in the area are rather draconian with pay raises and benefits and treat their employees as if they’re chattel because there is no alternative to what they bring to the town.

    Management, especially in the auto industry, has blamed unions for their stupidity. Seriously, when everyone is buying small cars and management refuses to build them, what the hell does that have to do with the unions? The Big 4 could have stopped the Japanese invasion decades ago but they decided to cede the small car market to them and then they were unable to admit that they were wrong and rather than gear up toward fighting back, they took on the unions and blamed them for their stupidity. The Governor of Wisconsin is blaming the unions for HIS problems and yet, he signed in tax cuts that will more than offset any savings that he might have gained by busting the unions AND the real culprits of this big deficit remain to be dealt with.

  92. xxwhodatxx says: Feb 21, 2011 1:48 PM

    “Unions will be the downfall of America”

    you are absolutely correct-i have friends that joined the union from a non-union job-came right back asking for there jobs back-the union takes care of u-b.f.s.-they have 401k-if your not working nothing is being put in the 401k-my non-union shop gives the employees a choice if they want to start one and i will match them up to 6%
    some have nice chunk of money for retirement-my guys may only get 30 hours in the slow time-union friends sit at home with notta-union rep does not care if there is work he gets payed by the head count he brings in-i once was in the union-never again-i own a house,cars,etc. and by no means did the union do that for me-

  93. gopack12009 says:
    Feb 23, 2011 1:03 AM

    Let me guess every Tea bagger and other union bashers would porbably say the brave union members of NYFD,NYPD,Port Authority,and others are a bunch of overpaid cry babies who want to much from the taxpayers. I wonder how many corporate goons thanked those brave souls on 9-11. Remember nonunion middle class people out there every benefit you have is because of the unions. Holidays,overtime,minimum wage,vacations,insurance,pensions,safety regulations,child labor,and many other benefits are provided thanks to unions. Just take some time and educate yourself on how well employees in America were treated before unions.
    ——————————————————-

    Let me guess, wait, I don’t have to guess, you’ve proven positive by your comments here that a public union worker like yourself takes for granted the most basic fact that you wouldn’t have your job (along with the your salary/benefits which are the envy of the private-sector, tax-paying worker with more education and less salary/benefits) if it were not for the taxes paid by the private sector worker.

    Again, your haughty comments are proof positive that most public employees (i.e., tax-payer funded) and Democrats in general are totally blinded by a false sense of self-entitlement and take for granted the fact that they only have all that they have they because of the private sector. There are alot of tax-paying citizens in the private sector who are currently laid off who would love to do your job for much less the salary/benefits than you are making now and seeking to only increase through your unfair “collective bargaining” process in the coming years.

    Get a clue.

  94. I’m sorry that facts hurt your head. It’s funny but you anti-union types can only post crap that CAN’T be substantiated and then scream that proof comes from some liberal site, even though it isn’t and won’t provide proof of your own. Go back to Beck and help him rewrite history.

  95. xxwhodatxx says: Feb 21, 2011 1:48 PM

    “Unions will be the downfall of America”
    —————————————————–

    To be fair and accurate, perhaps a clarification of your comment might help:

    “Many PUBLIC unions are currently contributing to the downfall of America.”

    (As some of us keep trying to point out, there is an important difference between a public union relative to public government and a private union relative to private business. I do not beshirk a private-sector union whatsoever, precisely because their members pay taxes, rather than consume them. A public-sector union on the otherhand, like the teacher’s union in Wisconsin, well, that’s another story.)

  96. @edgy – Hehe, I am not too concerned about you converting to my point of view and I hope you don’t think that I should convert to yours.

    And for the love of God, you still think I hate unions…pure comedy! Believe what you want, I could careless as there are more that think and believe like I do then yourself and that’s for a reason! Now that is a fact!

  97. I think people might actually believe you if you weren’t lying out of your teeth. You hate unions and you know and you’ve shown that over and over.

  98. Even FDR, the icon of liberals, said government employees should not be unionized. Because they are paid by the taxpayers. Their funding should be set by our lawmakers and only by our lawmakers. This isn’t me talking, this is FDR himself.

  99. @edgy –

    Alright, you made me do it. Try to punch holes in this as it relates to public sector unions and NOT credible private sector unions. Again, NOT private sector unions. I know you can’t read and remember hence I repeated myself:

    Why public sector unions should be illegal:

    1) Duplicity: Unions bribe liberal politicians with political donations to increase wages and get favorable government rules, regulations and mandates for unions. (Obama received $400 million from unions during his presidential campaign…)

    Unions also organize members to actively campaign for liberal politicians on a quid pro whoooa!! basis. This severely skews the employee/employer relationship.

    It would be like a private sector union bribing a company president with $10 million to agree to union salary demands. If this happened in the real world, the executive would go to jail…. In the public sector, the bribed politician gets reelected… How is that fair or ethical?

    2) Monopolistic nature of government: For many services, governments hold a monopoly by law. This allows unlimited wage increases with no threat of lower-priced competing services. There are no limits to the excess. The more politicians give unions, the more they get in campaign funds. How is that fair to the ultimate employer; the tax payers. They get less service for more money.

    3) Total lack of cost constraints: Since governments aren’t limited by profit and loss considerations, they can pay outrageous wages and benefits. Any shortfalls can be made up with increased taxes or issuing as much debt as they want. If a corporation tries this, they go bankrupt. If a politician does this they get reelected with the help of public sector unions.

    4) Dangerous Extortion: Public sector unions have the ability to completely close down entire segments of the economy and essential public services through strikes, slowdowns and sickouts. Just look at the thousands of schools that were shutdown in Wisconsin, the traffic nightmare and the mountains of trash in NY during the worst blizzard in decades when sanitation workers staged a slowdown last month. Such power to stop commerce and essential services is a national security risk, with no private sector alternative.

    5) Conflict of Interest- Since the direct employer also holds legislative power, unions can extort union-friendly legislation. This is unfair to the ultimate employer/consumer (i.e. taxpayers), whose best interest is secondary to the unions given the quid pro quo relationship that exists between unions and the politicians.

    For the above reasons, public-sector union members now make, on average, 100% more than the private sector. As a result, state and federal governments are completely bankrupt and unions want even MORE money and benefits.

    Even FDR, the patron saint of private sector unions, and one of the most liberal presidents in US history, knew the dangers mentioned above and was staunchly against public sector unions.

    Public sector unions must be closed down as soon as possible or the cycle or runaway government spending, decreased quality of public services and devastating deficits will never end.

    America is now broke partially because of the absurd pubic sector wages and benefits caused by public sector unions. If someone wants to join a union, get a real job in the private sector.

  100. Again, you boob, you continue to try to scream that I’ve actually said something that I didn’t and no matter how many times you try, the FoxNews strategy is not going to work: saying that it’s so won’t make it true.

    BUT, to play YOUR game:

    1. and this is different from businessmen, in what way? Oh, you say that they don’t bribe politicians but unions do? Or are going to say that I’m putting words in your mouth like you’re doing to me? BTW, how does this differ from private unions, which anti-union guys like you have claimed that they’ve done?

    Again, how does this differ from businessmen, who have done the same thing by encouraging their employees to vote for conservative candidates (and please, don’t insult even the stupidest person here by saying that they don’t).

    2. Baloney. This is one of the stupidest statements I’ve ever seen. In case you haven’t been paying attention and you haven’t, local governments haven’t been raising wages for a long time. Most of the fights that have been over benefits and pensions because the employees and their unions have made wage concessions to keep those from being drained AND the government hasn’t been keeping its promise to fund pensions, especially under Republicans.

    3. Baloney. Outrageous salaries. You must really spend your time watching hour after hour of Beck and other Fox Heads to come up with this crap. The average employee makes less than they would if they were working for a private company doing the SAME JOB with the same LEVEL OF EDUCATION. They make less in salary but more in benefits but overall, they make less in the combined incomes that both generate. Most government jobs REQUIRE — get that – REQUIRE a DEGREE, which — GASP — means that they get paid more, just as they would in the private sector, genius (and I use that term, loosely and ironically). Those salaries may seem outrageous when you compare it to an uneducated burger flipper in Louisiana but not when you compare a government paid computer programmer to one in the private sector who is making 30% more.

    4. Oh, my God, it’s the End Of Daze. You’d think that the government would have no way to deal with this. Ok, maybe if YOU were running it, you’re mind couldn’t figure it out but then again, that’s you.

    5. Conflicts of interest? Seriously, when businessmen do it, it’s OK but when unions do, it’s ARMAGEDDON. Oh, God, stop the insanity. Jesus…

    Again, total baloney. In the first place, you’re comparing their salaries to the salaries of guys that are flipping burgers and don’t say that you’re aren’t because even the guys who are trying to bring down the unions have admitted where the numbers are coming from and what they include. The guys that are being included COULD NOT get these high paying “union” jobs or even “non-union” jobs because of the educational requirements and THAT’S why they’re paid more.

    Again, what amazes me are people like you who try to pawn off Fox “facts” (guffaw) with reality. Other than the Republicans in the state, everyone else in Wisconsin knows that the real budget problems have NOTHING to do with the unions or the public sector employees and let’s not forget that states that are more draconian or even without any real public unions have budget problems that are as bad as the states that do? How do you square your hatred of unions with that fact?

    Again, unions aren’t the problem but let’s go with YOUR stupid assumptions and lower the cost of government by lifting the educational requirements. I wonder how great you’d feel about the person that’s giving you service if you knew that 3 weeks ago they were flipping burgers and a year before that, they had just graduated from the 6th grade ala Jethro Bodine?

    I still laugh at guys like you who try to blame the ills of the government on the workers, EVEN THE ONES NOT IN UNIONS. As I pointed out and you ignored, with or without collective bargaining rights, states have nearly the same budget shortfalls and all of them are because of reason OTHER than their employees. Some of the biggest expenses have become bloated by the greed of private industry, such as health insurance companies that have doubled their premiums and charges for states and have cost more to insure public workers AND take care of the needs of the public when it comes to programs like Medicaid. Also, Wisconsin’s second biggest expenditure was Welfare. Are you saying that it was all the fault of unions that it was that high? Let’s not forget that conservative initiatives to cut taxes for their wealthy brethren, that were supposed to create jobs but ended up overseas, have sucked a lot of revenue away and have hurt states that needed the money to pay for the roads and the bridges and all the other infrastructure that is NEEDED. Of course, the same people that whine about taxes are also pissing and moaning about the bad condition of the roads that they drive on that can’t be repaired because there’s not enough revenue to help take care of them. Would you fault the public sector unions for these problems just like other union haters or would you actually admit that the problems of the states have a lot more to do with other things than the unions. I ask all you geniuses if you actually think that if we eliminated unions and paid them what YOU think that they’re worth that you’ll attract better people than they have now? I certainly would tell you to KMA if you tried to get me to work for as little as some of them get in comparison to what they could get in the private sector.

  101. Yawn, you made no valid rebuttals or else I would have to disprove you once again. Have fun with your thoughts as I tire of you as you talk around the facts with one off lingo. Thanks liberal for being the reason of the declining dollar.

    Any future replies will not be read as I don’t play ping-pong.

  102. I take it Economics courses were too difficult for the anti-unions supporters.. If you really think that ripping away collective bargaining rights are a cure for the ever growing deficits, I’m not sure you should be commenting in the first place.

  103. In response to smacklayer: Do you know anything about Charles Woodson? This NFL player donated millions to a children’s hospital.

  104. edgy says:
    Feb 24, 2011 12:05 PM

    3. Baloney. Outrageous salaries. You must really spend your time watching hour after hour of Beck and other Fox Heads to come up with this crap. The average employee makes less than they would if they were working for a private company doing the SAME JOB with the same LEVEL OF EDUCATION. They make less in salary but more in benefits but overall, they make less in the combined incomes that both generate. Most government jobs REQUIRE — get that – REQUIRE a DEGREE, which — GASP — means that they get paid more, just as they would in the private sector, genius (and I use that term, loosely and ironically). Those salaries may seem outrageous when you compare it to an uneducated burger flipper in Louisiana but not when you compare a government paid computer programmer to one in the private sector who is making 30% more.
    ————————————————–

    Edgy, if you liberals keep replying to rational arguments backed up by facts by simply calling your opponent a Beck/Fox News follower, people just might start to catch on that you really are nothing but full of (bs)ound and fury, signifying nothing.

    Your comments here is simply contrary to the facts. But let me test this. I’ll state a fact: The average annual total compensation for a Milwaukee public school teacher is $100,005. That’s not a typo – $100,005 per year – $56,500 in salary and an amazing $43,505 in benefits, paid for by nurses, mechanics, secretaries and other hardworking private-sector people who don’t get their summers off.

    Now, guess which source I got that from and I guarantee that you will be wrong. But then again, why bother with a drone tied into the mainstream media? Perhaps I should get laid….were it not for lack of energy from having a private-sector job with alot of unpaid overtime, in addition to being married so long with a bunch of kids. And I don’t have the luxury of being in a public union to get me free Viagra as one of my many stealth benefits at taxpayer expense. 😉

  105. “If he is in such solidarity, why not pay his “fair share” and donate some of his salary to the cause?”

    Ibooger25:

    If you were a packers fan you would know that Charlie has donated millions to the U of M in their cancer research department. Get off your high horse when ripping a guy that does a ton of charity work and gives (3) millions away. Yeah he is afforded more than you because of his athletic talent but he’s also done more with that then you ever will. Charlie is a true Packer and a great guy, don’t question his integrity without knowing the facts.

  106. Actually, fire, they deleted a couple of my posts that even had average salaries of the Wisconsin private/public that totally disproved your statement that they made 100% more than the private sector, as well as some other facts.

    I will try it again so here we go:

    Average private/public in Wisconsin by education:

    High school:

    Private ($47,469)
    Public ($46,213)

    Bachelors:

    Public ($82,134)
    Private ($61,668)

    Masters:

    Private ($100,296)
    Public ($74,056)

    Doctorate:

    Private ($128,306)
    Public ($91,623)

    Even the private “burger flippers” made more than the public ones. This is the combined income (salary and benefits) of public vs private and as you can see (but you won’t), the private sector makes more and the gap gets even bigger as their level of education goes up because public employees are leaving a lot of money on the table to put up with the crap that you guys keep dishing out.

  107. dwhitehurst says:

    **********************

    $56,000 in salary and the rest in benefits that they will most likely not see because teachers pensions in all states are all THE MOST UNDERFUNDED pensions of any public employee and health care costs have gone through the roof (A big part of their “benefits”. They literally teach kids on a promise that isn’t kept. They give up a lot of money in the present for the promise of some in the future and none of them will ever see that promise fulfilled. In Oklahoma, the public employees are fighting to keep their pensions from being insolvent. Only one group even meets the minimum requirement of 80% funding that has been set while teachers are at 50% and that’s the case all over the country.

    Oh and again, for those who continue to blame PUBLIC UNIONS for the budget problems, you might consider this: ONLY 36 PERCENT of ALL government employees are members of unions (Bureau Of Labor Statistics). How is it that all of these states with a MINORITY of their employees in unions have budget problems that are totally because of unions when some of them don’t even have union employees?

    Also, what is more troubling than the pensions are the health care costs, which are NOT the fault of the unions or even the new healthcare law. Health care costs have doubled every 5-10 years and it’s been hurting EVERYONE and it is consuming more public money and even if you shifted more of it on to the employee, it will continue to sky rocket. These costs have been going up for ALL PUBLIC SECTOR EMPLOYEES – union or otherwise. Public workers have given up a lot of wages to keep their benefits and the problem is that rather than fight for the right to get those benefits, a lot of people would rather than deny them theirs.

  108. To the person above who made this ridiculous statement:
    The height of the Labor Unions is directly related to the economic boom of the 1950s back when we called society “the good old days”

    Incredible.

    After WWII The United States entered a full production economic boom in the manufacturing sector. You are correct on that. You are also correct in correlating this to the height of labor unions. Unions took advantage of New Deal policies to form powerful political affiliated unions in the majority of American Industry. The result of which, drove wages to unsustainable levels forcing companies to incur fixed costs into all finished goods. (They raised prices) After three decades of unions demanding higher wages and guaranteed benefits that exist in vacuums void of any external market fluctuations, these industries became less and less competitive to their foreign imported counterparts. This resulted in facility closures, loss of jobs, foreign acquisitions and a total erosion of the producing sector of our entire economy.

    Need an example? The American auto industry. Strong union. Wage demands. Benefit demands. higher fixed costs. higher prices on cars. less cash for research and development or quality assurance.
    American cars became less reliable, less efficient, but more expensive. Foreign competitors caught up and took over the industry, for one simple reason: They did not have to worry about entitlement costs!

    Before you form your condescending opinions about things, why don’t you at least pick up a book and make sure it has a hint of reality to back it up.

  109. dwhitehurst says:
    Feb 24, 2011 10:24 PM
    ————————————————–
    That’s not a typo – $100,005 per year – $56,500 in salary and an amazing $43,505 in benefits, paid for by nurses, mechanics, secretaries and other hardworking private-sector people who don’t get their summers off.

    ————————————————–

    How exactly does that $43,505 break down? I’m not saying I don’t believe you but I’m curious.

  110. bakcle says:

    **********************

    That’s a nice business fairy tale but the fact is that many businesses that had little or no union involvement went overseas without being driven there by the unions or do you think that there was a very big union driving sneaker making costs up so that the companies were “forced” into charging $200 or more for them.

    When they first started moving electronic appliance manufacturing to Mexico, prices didn’t go down and in fact, they went up for a couple of years until they figured out that the best way to make money was to separate the warranties from the equipment so prices went “down” but you got a warranty that was basically good for 90 days or if you were lucky, 6 months to a year but you could purchase an “extended” warranty that gave you back the kind of service and guarantee that you had before they moved to Mexico. It got to the point of ridiculous when one company actually sold a microwave whose warranty cost more than the microwave itself. Costs came down eventually but that was a consequence of advances in manufacturing and not union busting.

    Also, let’s not forget that businesses pushed through a provision that allowed them cheaper taxes and the ability to defer them indefinitely if they didn’t bring the profits back into the country. This provision made it incredibly profitable to go overseas and was the biggest driver of the flight. It’s a provision that liberals have tried to get repealed but that conservatives hang on to at the expense of the jobs of their constituents.

    BTW, I think that some of those who continue to blame unions for the ills of this country, might want to answer why companies from Europe, which have strong unions with high wages and government health care, do very good business in the US, especially in the auto industry. How do they square that with their hatred of the unions?

  111. edgy
    ………………………………………………………………………..

    You are joking right? I’m not sure what rock you live under, but you may want to poke your head out and get with the times.

    Did you see the revolutions in Greece? How about the massive protests, strikes and shortages in France? Socialist policies in both of these countries have left governments insolvent. They aren’t able to pay their entitlements! The result? France raised their retirement age to collect pensions by two years causing nationwide protests that bordered on revolution in the summer of 2010. The same thing happened to Greece who had to have the proverbial reset button pressed on their entire economy by the European Union. In England they have a national sales tax of 20%! The Parliament announced last summer a 4 year plan to cut government spending and social programs. 1 out of every 4 people in England is on some form of government assistance as of July 2010. Oh and by the way, they privatized 50% of their nationalized health care in a move that confirms that skyrocketing costs were no longer sustainable. The entire region is going through a cultural movement away from multi-nationalism, and an economic policy away from the socialist policies that predate to the 1960s.

    We are moving in a direction that Europe is directly moving away from in defeat.

    The worlds largest automaker is now Volkswagen. Their main production facility is in Mexico. On a side note: When is the last piece of technology that was trend setting made in Europe? Anyone, Anyone? These socialist policies that you deem respectable follow the conclusive model that all economist already know. The lack of venture capitalism from individuals inherently forms a society lacking innovation.

    Go get in your Delorian, set the date to February 2011 and come back to reality.

  112. wanefontes:
    ———————————–

    That wasn’t my post about 43,500 but from a private sector American I contribute about 18k to my own retirement account(s) annually and about 2800 to my health care. Keep in mind I’m in my late 20s and single with no kids. The fact I contribute 20k to my retirement and healthcare, I would not be surprised at all if you factor a free pension and healthcare that covers someones entire family being 43k.

  113. edgy:

    ……. the same thing can’t be said of public sector workers, who are more likely to require a degree to even get the job and take less in wages to do their job. You can complain about how their pay and pension but if you compare what they could make with private companies, it doesn’t compare.
    _____________________________________

    Bullsh*t, my mother is a teacher and I have no problem saying this. Almost every guy/girl I know (I know several) essentially became a teacher b/c if you screw around in college it is the “best deal.” You can get. You saying that every girl I know that became a teacher could make “much more with a private company” is laughable. Most of them could get hired in the first place.

    Oh, I’ve got a English/History/Psych degree and I basically have no idea what I want to do in life. What? I can “get certified” (more govt $$$ in that process.) Then, I will make from 38 up to 80k a year….with full medical and pension….I’M IN!

    Give me a break dude. I love my mother (taught 28 years), but show me a private company that will pay her 65k+ to work 185 days a year, and all the sweet benefits…….You are freaking delusional.

  114. bakcle says:

    *********************

    Thanks for playing our game and here are some lovely parting gifts.

    You do realize that you’re talking apples and oranges, here. Unions — both public and private — are being scapegoated by everyone, even when they have nothing to do with what’s going on. For example, private unions have nothing to do with the government crises in ANY country and yet, they’re being held up as the great Satan, even when they have nothing to do with anything.

    As for the crises with pensions, again, not every one of those public employees are part of any union and not everyone in the street are part of the unions. In fact (and this makes me laugh my ass off), the % of members of unions in the countries that you mentioned are LOWER than the US (Italy, 30%, UK, 29%, Germany, 27%, France, 9%. Source: European Union). The crisis that these people have are problems related to more than just the unions or the public employees but who best to scapegoat.

    Why do people go to Mexico? If you listen to the business men HERE, they talk about how they’re fleeing this country because of the educational system and the taxes but what they won’t tell you is that they’re able to pollute to their heart’s content and really, what does education have to do with assembling an automobile or a pair of sneakers? You can scapegoat the unions all you want but again, and I emphasize this, they’re a MINORITY IN THIS COUNTRY and AROUND THE WORLD. 36% of the workers belong to unions and less than 25% of the European workers belong to unions and even less than that in the countries that you’re moaning about. Seriously, please show how a group that is 9% of France’s working population is causing the crisis. I’d love to see how that works…

  115. carolinethedog says:

    *********************

    Apparently, the education that you got kept you from reading comprehension classes. You should probably go back and try to get a refund on your degree.

    In the first place, you do realize that most state employees are NOT teachers, do you? You think that a government programmer makes more with the government than he does for the outside world? I posted a telecommute programming position for a private corp that pays $81,000 AT THE LOW END and $104,000 at the high end and that is the lowest paying job that I posted. I also posted a job that has an open salary BUT I know that they will go UP TO $312k for it and if they find the right person, they’ll go even higher and again, it’s for a private corporation.

    As I said before, my chemistry professor used to work for Phillips and he took a HUGE pay cut to become a teacher and they threw money at him to stay when he told them he was leaving.

    If you compare compensation of private vs public TEACHERS, you’ll find that the trend has reversed from years ago. Private teachers make more money AND they also have the added benefit of tuition free education for their children, which could cost them a hell of a lot more than what it would to put them through public schools. Now, for parochial schools, which tends to have more nuns and pay less to the lay person, there is a gap in pay but for those private schools without religious affiliation, the pay is quite nice and you’d be hard pressed to find out how much they do make because they guard their information from prying eyes.

  116. edgy
    ……………………………………………………………………………
    Scapegoats? They have nothing to do with what’s going on here? realllllly?

    First of all collective bargaining is unconstitutional. The way unions work in non-right to work states forces membership. You can opt not to be a member of the union, but still must contribute the money from each paycheck. Please explain to me how this is legal?

    The backlash against unions has more to do with their hypocricy than anything else. I went to a college that was started as a State Normal School in the 1800s. It was a teacher’s college that has evolved into a public institution. I totally agree with the poster above about the real reasons people become teachers today. I have no fewer than 25 examples of friends who brag to me about how good they have it, and how many days they get off. free health care, free retirement and free graduate degrees.

    Back to the hypocrisy: When the economic downfall started 2 years ago the private sector was hit hard and has been suffering ever since. Americans are struggling to keep their homes and pay their bills. The public sector was spared the first two years because we spent 4 trillion dollars on stimulus money into state and local governments. That cash injection is now gone, but the macroeconomic recovery has been minimal at best. The private sector has cut back, we make less money, we are doing more work, we are spending less and paying more for our premiums and benefits.

    What we are witnessing is the proverbial “other shoe falling off” with stimulus money gone and state and local governments doing nothing over the past two years to readjust their benefits and wage structure to accommodate for our situation.

    Ironic because the labor unions who speak of corporate greed, themselves refuse to concede anything.

    I make 38% less money than I did in 2007. My healthcare deductible went from 1600 to 2400, because I never meet that, I pay 100% of my healthcare costs. My premiums rose 20% over a three year period and I’m responsible for 94% of my retirement income which is fixed to a stock market not a vacuum like public sector employees.

    Why does my company pay less for these things? Because due to economics and market situations they had to cut back in order to SURVIVE.

    What do you think would happen to my company if through collective bargaining I FORCED them to pay me my 2007 salary? my 2007 benefits?

    My company would lay people off, raise prices, reduce our competitiveness, we would in turn lose money, and face the potential of going out of business due to competition.

    When we see labor unions REFUSE protest rather than go to work because they don’t want to pay 5% and 12% respectively as myself and every other American have adjusted accordingly, the Union shows that the GREED RESTS WITH THEM.

    Our state budgets are insolvent. Cuts must be made. In a similar scenario the union is telling the private sector Americans who are suffering “screw you, I’m not conceding anything. I want private Americans to have their taxes jacked up so I can keep my golden benefits” All this despite myself and every other American making less money and paying higher health premiums for the past THREE YEARS.

    You will NEVER win. The unions have cried wolf too loud this time. Even the President has abandoned support. He knows it will cost him the election if he sides with what you accurately point out are a small percentage of the population.

  117. bakcle says:

    ******************

    Go read about the legality of the laws from something other than Beck U. Seriously, you don’t even have a clue when you say that bull. Hint: COMMERCE CLAUSE. Buddy, if you think that you know what you’re talking about, you’re sadly mistaken. Jesus, it gets me when people think that know what they’re talking about when they quote some idiot right winger about the law and then don’t even have a clue about what they’re talking about. Ciao.

  118. I’m gonna use the same argument for Wisconsin that all you socialist left wingers (Obama, Olbermann, Maddow, Maher, Matthews) told me about Obama care, the Stimulus, and all of the other crap jammed down my throat by government.

    I think it went something like this. [Ahem]

    YOU LOST THE ELECTION. Too bad. The people have spoken in Wisconsin and have elected the people in charge. For the Democrats of that state to run and hide from the issue is not courageous. It’s cowardice. If you don’t like it, then win the election. There’s a reason you don’t have the numbers for the vote to be in your favor. YOU LOST! That’s the way it goes. The overall arrogance of the democrats, who didn’t give a crap about what the people wanted before last November, offends me. But, at the time, the people spoke in their favor. They were in charge. All I can do is the best I can with what’s dealt to me. I protested at the ballot box last November as did millions of others like it or not.

    Show up and do your job, Wisconsin democrats. You can’t fight for what you believe in if you take your ball and go home. I’m not professing to know the issues particular to Wisconsin. All I am saying is that the people in office are the people in charge–the people who were ELECTED. The Republicans won. Their policies are going to be enacted just like the dems policies have been enacted in Washington. That’s just the way it goes. Tough. See if it works. If it doesn’t, then vote the bums out naxt time around and stop whining!

    As for the gentlemen who posted earlier about the 5 non union state ACT/SAT scores, I saw the article you took that from. I can pull numbers from a box score to make it look good even though my team lost too. The stats you quoted were surface stats and did not go deeper into the issue. For instance, ACT tests are different from state to state. This is just one example, but it’s typical that a union hack like you would just throw out numbers without explaining what they actually mean and how they came about. It’s kinda pathetic.

  119. @ edgy

    As a preface to this comment, I must state that I respect what teachers do and that not ALL teachers are bad teachers or simply union hacks.

    I saw what you wrote to carolinethedog. Why don’t teachers want merit pay then? Your chemistry professor’s old job obviously wanted to retain him because he was good at what he did for them. That’s called capitalism (ie merit pay!). They wanted to pay them what they thought he was worth to them. He obviously went into to teaching as a personal decision. Or maybe the benefits package was better. Who knows?

    I’ll tell you why teachers don’t want merit pay. Because if they suck as teachers, they’ll get fired just like they would in the private sector and lose the golden benefits packages they have. That’s why.

  120. edgy
    ———————————————-
    Please cite a single example where I quote anything from Glen Beck?

    I’m a finance major who studied economics for 6 years, worked in that sector for 5 and continue to work in the area of personal finance consulting as a secondary job.

    What I did is systematically take every one of your arguments and shred them to the core with facts. In turn, you like every other left of center, throw temper tandrems like a child and claim we are brainwashed from a fox news channel that I don’t even watch.

    I’m a registered independent. I’m not shallow enough to possibly group my beliefs into the singular agenda of either “party”

    If you think a system that forces membership, pools money and spent 30 billion dollars to get democrats elected in the last election cycle, has anything other than their own special interests in mind, you my friend are the ignorant one.

  121. You sound exactly like Beck when you put forward some arguments about the Constitutionality of a law when you obviously don’t even have a clue ala Beck. Please, show me in the Constitution where it’s legal for states to require that you take out automobile insurance. Go ahead, I’ll wait. What amendment was that — the GEICO amendment? If you believe that collective bargaining is unconstitutional then you’re certainly educated enough about the facts because it’s been through the system for decades and the Supreme Court has moved past that argument. You would think that if it was unconstitutional that unions would have been outlawed by now, wouldn’t you? Nah, too simple of an explanation. I suppose I should go to Beck U to learn what the Constitution really says….

    You might want to spend more time actually researching the bull crap that you’re spewing instead of just coming up with figures off the top of your head. There’s NO WAY IN HELL that the teacher’s union would have spent $30 BILLION for the Democrats. With that kind of money, they could have paid for the — wait for it — $30 BILLION bill that Congress passed last year, which is what you’re probably confusing with their contributions, which was in the millions. Seriously, do you just make this crap up like Beck? Union contributions didn’t even come close to passing $1 billion, let alone $30 billion. Hell, the two biggest contributions during 2010 from unions totaled a little over $100 million. Do you think that there were a lot of little contributors that made up the other $29.9 billion? Geez.

  122. edgy says:
    Feb 26, 2011 4:20 PM

    Go read about the legality of the laws from something other than Beck U. Seriously, you don’t even have a clue when you say that bull. Hint: COMMERCE CLAUSE. Buddy, if you think that you know what you’re talking about, you’re sadly mistaken. Jesus, it gets me when people think that know what they’re talking about when they quote some idiot right winger about the law and then don’t even have a clue about what they’re talking about. Ciao.
    ————————————————–

    Hence, with a final reply of nothing but “ad hominem” attack on the messenger from Edgy, he concedes defeat. Ciao indeed!

  123. Some of you people need to get a f***ing clue. This isn’t going to just effect Wisconsin. This entire issue isn’t about money at all. On many occasions union officials and even a couple REPUBLICAN SENATORS requested to drop the collective bargaining. Unions have already agreed to take the pay cut so I have no idea why some of you dumbasses comment on this page. GET A CLUE! This is only the beginning and if some of you arrogant ignorant people think we are going to sit back and let this happen you’re sadly mistaken. UNITED WE STAND AHOLES!

  124. Maybe the majority of you that comment on such issues should figure out what is actually going on. There are 3 Fitzgeralds in Wisconsins state system. One is the head of the senate assembly, the other is the speaker of the house, and the third is the head of WI state troopers, which is one of the only state organizations that is not affected by the anti-collective bargaining agreement. All of this is politics, the troopers are protected via personal connection, to say this is really a question of budget balancing is ludicrious. Why are troopers not treated the same as municipal police or firemen? Clearly a conflict of interest. Unions are good, if it wasn’t for unions we would have no work related laws. Why do you think companies hire illegal immigrants???? Because they can get paid less and are not protected by these unions. So a bunch of people from the east and west coast acting all intellectual about this issue is silly, like all politics it had nothing to do with personal values, but only with personal connections. Pull your head out, don’t be a tool. Wisconsin is ground zero for union rights, if WI falls, then so does Ohio and many other states. People should understand national politics as well as state politics, before running your mouth on a football website???? Who is the tool now????

  125. Truth is, unions help private sector jobs.
    People join union work to give up high salaries (see $30k/yr) in return for good working conditions and benefits. A private sector employee now has to be lured by a private sector employer by higher salary.

    When the union jobs disappear, the private sector employer has no incentive to attract people at higher/competitive wages and of course the benefits already suck in comparison. It’s a race to the bottom and labor is being targeted.
    The middle class is under perpetual attack.

    I’ll never apply for a union job but the fact that there is a union means high private sector jobs for me (in IT) while I go for higher risk/higher reward work.

    Without unions, we would not have a 5 day work week, many holidays, labor laws like 8hrs of work before overtime pay, health benefits.

    Unless you’re Jerry Richardson, Jerry Jones or Charles Koch, labor unions are a great thing.

  126. edgy:
    “Apparently, the education that you got kept you from reading comprehension classes. You should probably go back and try to get a refund on your degree.

    In the first place, you do realize that most state employees are NOT teachers, do you? ”
    _____________________________________
    Yes, I DO realize most gov’t jobs ARE NOT teachers. I also realize that we are talking about a TEACHER STRIKE (oh yeah, “organized vacation” not strike….right.) So, if we are talking about a teacher strike, I am obviously not talking about cops, firemen, or the DMV. Duh….was that your point? Way to skirt the issue there, brah. You threw in the weak cut-down to boot.

    It’s great how you use the example of the noble chemist who leaves big money b/c he wanted to teach….ha. Funny thing is my father is a doctor…..now he teaches (private college, so not perfect comparison.) YOU KNOW WHY HE DID THIS? The pay/work ratio is unbelievable and the benefits are excellent. Sure it’s less $$$ overall, but it is still a great deal when you consider the actual time at work. BUT, THESE ARE EXCEPTIONS TO THE RULE.

    LET’S GET BACK TO THE POINT…..
    Can you tell me the private sector jobs that will pay what teachers get, for the skill-set that a majority of them have?

    ANSWER THIS….How about a 5th grade teacher that has 20 years experience and say an “education” bachelors (or a psych/biology/english/history B.A.)? What private company will pay that person over 65-70k to work 180 days (literally half the year) with full benefits?

    …..your answer? I’m waiting, and spare me the weak cut-downs. Just name one of these companies you speak of, and I’ll tell my teacher friends to apply there. Seriously, answer a simple question….I’m waiting.

  127. First you’re comparing a PRIVATE college teaching job to a public education job. It’s clear that you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about. Teachers put in 60-80 hours a week excluding parent-teacher conferences.

    What do you think teachers do during the summer? Go on their private yachts and talk about how much money they just made while laughing at private workers? NO! They either find another job or teach summer school. If they aren’t doing that, they’re going to school to get their masters. Who pays for that? TEACHERS DO!

    Not to mention taking work home to grade tests, papers, projects, etc. Dealing with parent’s questions and complaints on a daily basis, and most of all PEOPLE LIKE YOU LOOK DOWN ON THEM!!! Teachers are single handedly the most important aspect of our society. Without them, you’re god of a father would be a gay hooker just tryin to get by. Grow up tool…

  128. I myself would be happy to pay 100k for teachers to raise our youth. I find it hilarious that people are selfish to realize that they have become who they are because of the education they received. Real democracy is happening in Madison. I have been there and for anyone that reads my post please join us down there to protest this plan. Remember this…

    To the people, united, we will never be divided!

  129. mossholder says: Feb 28, 2011 11:13 AM

    First you’re comparing a PRIVATE college teaching job to a public education job. It’s clear that you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about. Teachers put in 60-80 hours a week excluding parent-teacher conferences.

    What do you think teachers do during the summer? Go on their private yachts and talk about how much money they just made while laughing at private workers? NO! They either find another job or teach summer school. If they aren’t doing that, they’re going to school to get their masters. Who pays for that? TEACHERS DO!

    Not to mention taking work home to grade tests, papers, projects, etc. Dealing with parent’s questions and complaints on a daily basis, and most of all PEOPLE LIKE YOU LOOK DOWN ON THEM!!! Teachers are single handedly the most important aspect of our society. Without them, you’re god of a father would be a gay hooker just tryin to get by. Grow up tool…
    __________________________________
    I did consider not mentioning that my father is now a professor at a private university. I knew someone would just jump all over that and skirt the question…yet again. My mother is a public school teacher by the way, and actually it’s not a yacht… but a 18″ ski boat, an always newer convertible and a 400k house, my step-dad doesn’t make that much btw.

    Also, my uncle is a principle (just retired) who made OVER $115k a year at a school of less than 400 students. $115,000?! On what (for principle) 225 days a year?

    You are the tool. I DO NOT look down on teachers AT ALL, I resent that. My whole family is teachers. I’m JUST TELLING IT LIKE IT IS…..IT’S NOT A BAD GIG AT ALL! Of course, teachers will whine and we hear the horror stories…..but it’s not a bad gig.

    BUT HEAR THIS…DON’T RESPOND TO THIS POST….just soak it in….RESPOND TO MY NEXT POST!

  130. Here you go mossholder (stick to the point)
    EDGY SAID,
    “You can complain about how their pay and pension but if you compare what they could make with private companies, it doesn’t compare.”
    *******************************************
    AGAIN, I ASK………..
    Where can a 40-50 year old woman with an education degree (or English/History/Psych/etc.) and semi-bad computer skills get a job that pays about $70,000 to work 180 days and benefits like health insurance for the family????

    Where? Simple question. Can you just answer it please?

    BTW- what do you two do for a living?

  131. carolinethedog says:

    Can you tell me the private sector jobs that will pay what teachers get, for the skill-set that a majority of them have?

    ***********************

    Gee, genius, maybe TEACHER. For crying out loud, for someone who tries to talk so smart, you’re certainly making some pretty stupid points. The whole point was talking APPLES TO APPLES but you want to act as if there are no private companies that have the same kind of jobs and there are.

    BTW, GENIUS, besides the fact that I’m a computer programmer, I do the programmer recruiting for a company that I work for, which is why I post job listings and know what programmers make. I know that they’re not making as much in the government as private industry pays, even if you figure in the benefits.

  132. Maybe mossholder is cool with paying teachers 100k a year to teach 2nd grade WITH MY TAX DOLLARS……….but I’M NOT OK WITH THAT.

    AGAIN, I ASK………..
    Where can a 40-50 year old woman with an education degree (or English/History/Psych/etc.) and semi-bad computer skills get a job that pays about $70,000 to work 180 days and benefits like health insurance for the family????

    You guys said “companies” (plural) and all I have got back is this weak-ass response from edgy saying “TEACHER.”

  133. @ carolinethedog

    Don’t waste your time. They won’t answer your question. They CAN’T answer your question. If they do, they will prove your point. It’s no wonder they support the Wisconsin democrats since they’re running from the question too. It’s the common denominator.

    Understand this, folks. It’s not that we don’t think teaching is a noble profession or that we don’t think teachers should be paid fairly. What’s fair? It’s just that there comes a point where it is too much. It has reached that point in certain sectors and cuts must be made. It sucks if you’re the one that’s getting cut. I get it.

    I’ve read a lot about how there are trade offs between public and private sector jobs regarding pay, benefits etc. Here’s one that was left out. I heard someone say that if it weren’t for teachers, then no one would teach the kids. To that, I first say home schooling. I also respond by saying that having bad teachers teaching our kids isn’t a solution either. Good luck in being able to fire a bad, unionized teacher. If you suck at what you do in the private sector, you have no job because you’ll be fired. Also, pay in the private sector is based on what the company can pay based on that company’s profits. Edgy’s aforementioned chemistry professor was offered more money at his private sector job because the company could afford it. If they couldn’t, then they wouldn’t have offered it.

    Teachers are paid through tax dollars not profits. The only way they get more is if there is more tax revenue (ie higher taxes, ie I have to pay more so that a teacher can get paid more) or if the taxes are reallocated meaning something else gets cut, which the teacher’s union doesn’t care about. There isn’t an endless amount of money. When the public sector thinks there is is when the private sector gets pissed.

  134. I’m still laughing at the ignorance here. SALARY, SALARY, SALARY. Is that all you sheep can talk about? Get this straight: public employees have seen their salaries stagnate in the past decade and they’ve not only gotten less overall than their private counterparts, they’ve accepted less in raises, as well. If you look at it overall, you’ll see that not only have they taken less money, they’ve conceded to taking below cost of living and that’s with the promise from their employers that they will continue to pay for benefits like pensions and health care.

    In that time, the one benefit that they’ve had that has grown out of control has been health care costs, which have more than doubled while at the same time, their pensions have become less funded than they were supposed to be. The anti-union governors want concessions on health care and pensions, which they’ve gotten and now, not only do they want to take away their rights to bargain on those positions, they also want to take away their rights to bargain on pay and the worst part is that while these guys have sacrificed their present in pay, they’re being told to cram it when it comes to paying back their service with the future of their pensions.

    Now, when it comes to teachers, there’s no doubt where the agenda is here and that’s getting a voucher system in and here’s the quicker: the proponents want the government to pay for it and what’s even funnier is that if they get it, it will move the taxation up to the federal level and the private schools that crop up will be forced into hiring many of the teachers that they’re vilifying now and you’ll end up paying more for them because the best will COMMAND more. I’ve always heard “them that can, do and them that can’t, teach” and yet, I’ve seen too many good people go into the profession and after a few years, leave because the pay isn’t worth it and certainly having to put up with their critics, who don’t have the guts to quit their job and become teachers to get that cushy 9-5 job that they fantasize that they have. I’m not a teacher but I’ve lived next to one of the better high schools in Oklahoma and the teachers’ parking lot doesn’t empty out at 3:30 with those kids and they’re just as likely to be there an hour or so before the kids show up for their first class. If any of you geniuses think that it’s all about the loaves and fishes then by all means, get certified and go teach and see if that money is worth it. The teaching profession drives more people out of it than any other that I can think of and it’s the combination of pay, public criticism and parents who won’t help with educating their kids and think that teachers are some glorified baby sitter, who should not only teaching them reading, riting and rithmatic but also the fourth r, religion.

  135. BTW, genius, are you saying that no private company hires teachers? You also personify the ignorance here by talking about how these people work only 180 days. What a load of horse crap. In the first place, if YOU worked a standard 5 day work week and didn’t take vacations, that’s 260 days of work per year while a teacher that supposed lives on the loaves and fishes would work 195 (Take away holidays0. They also are on salary and put in hours that are more in line with management than regular workers and they don’t have the added benefit of overtime like regular workers or comp time like management. In the summer, they may have to teach summer school and that adds more to their “180 day” work year and the ones that don’t, are usually taking professional courses, AT THEIR EXPENSE. Let’s not forget that guys like you piss and moan so much about the costs that their budgets are slashed and many actually have to go into their own pockets to buy supplies and are never compensated for those expenses. Plus, they have the added “joy” of listening to ignorant people like you rant about how little they work and how overpaid they are and how they’re killing state budgets with their “high” salaries. If you think that it’s such an easy job then by all means, take your degree and go teach and see if the money is worth the hassle. I invite you to see why teachers lose more new people every year than any other professions and then come back here and tell everyone how easy they have it made and how appreciated they are and how their working conditions are such that they want to stick around and take the abuse and pay, instead of “working for a living” like some of their critics.

  136. BTW, in a February 19th article in the New Republic, Joseph McCartin, an associate professor of history and director of the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University, had this to say about the characterization that collective bargaining has led to these deficits (It should be noted that 5 states OUTLAW collective bargaining and all 5 are running — wait for it — DEFICITS, with two of the states, Texas and North Carolina, running at or above the national average):

    In the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, conservative, anti-labor politicians like Governor Walker are trying out a new and potentially more potent anti-union argument: We can no longer afford collective bargaining. The wages, health benefits, and pensions of government workers, these opponents say, are driving states into deep and dangerous deficits.

    Yet this contention is every bit as bogus as the alarmist arguments put forth by the anti-union crusaders of the 1970s. Contrary to Walker’s assertion, there is no direct correlation between public-sector collective bargaining and yawning state budget deficits. According to data gathered by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, while Wisconsin projects a state budget deficit of 12.8 percent for FY 2012, North Carolina, which does not allow government workers to bargain, faces a significantly higher deficit: 20 percent. Ohio, whose Republican governor John Kasich has also made clear his desire to roll back collective bargaining, has a deficit that is only about half the size of non-union North Carolina’s. Clearly, then, state budget deficits we are now witnessing are not the product of collective bargaining, but rather reflect the differential impact of the current recession on individual states, as well as the integrity of state fiscal practices (such as whether they raise enough in taxes to pay for the essential services they provide).

  137. Also, the whole time I’ve been writing this (while eating just back from gym) my neighbors car has been in her driveway. It has been there ALL DAY.

    What does she do? She’s a teacher.

    She got certification to work with sight/hearing impaired kids. She told me she got this b/c it is much easier as far as hours actually worked and less “take home” and slightly better pay. She probably actually goes in to work 3-4 days a week. With her seniority I’m sure she makes 55-65k.

    Meanwhile, my girlfriend will be home around 7pm tonight. She gets to work 9-6 M-F almost no holidays….NO benefits, and she has a graduate degree.

    Also, my ex-girlfriend is a “speech pathologist” with only K-3rd (I think.) She did it b/c her sister is doing it. Her sister makes $75,000 working regular teachers hours with ZERO take-home work (maybe writes the occasional 2-3 page report.) My ex is doing this b/c the pay is CRAZY HIGH for the amount of work done.

    Sure you could argue that they have a unique skill set. But, really? In the private sector you are judged by your output. With the teacher bureaucracy it’s all about “certifications and specializations.”

    The simple fact is their just isn’t enough $$$ to support the pay and bene’s.

    Sorry, I know it sucks. Maybe my mom will have to sell her boat.

  138. Yeah, I really believe every word that you said BUT if we are to believe your ONE incident then you sure have a lot of time on your hands. Oh, BTW, since she’s NOT a teacher at a “regular” school, how stupid of you to try and compare her job to that of others. What’s next, you’re going to compare a teacher to your burger flipping brother or your cousin who works as a waiter. Get real. I know that you’re just so full of crap but what the hell, what can you expect from a guy who would rather regale us with these so-called real life stories while ignoring facts. Again, genius, if you’re that sure that it’s so easy then quit your job and become a teacher. In the immortal words of Samuel L, “I dare you, I double dare you.”

  139. @ edgy

    We’re supposed to believe you, the computer programmer, was it? But, I can’t believe carolinethedog whose family and friends are in the teaching business?

    Typical union democrat. When you have no argument, you resort to name calling.

    I find it funny that one of your arguments about teachers doing more than 180 days work is that they go to school over the summer to get advanced degrees.

    News Flash. That’s not working. That’s going to school. If someone in the private sector wants to go to school, they have to squeeze it into their schedule (maybe night classes). They don’t have the luxury of going during the day. In any case, you do that on your own time! It’s not work.

    I also don’t get 10 days at Christmastime or a week in February or a week in April. I also don’t get most Monday holidays or Jewish holidays as is the case in public schools. I also don’t get half days 5 times a year. Stop making it sound like teachers kill themselves to do their job. They work hard and have to put up with a lot of crap. We all do.

  140. bcgreg says: Mar 1, 2011 6:48 PM

    @ edgy

    ***************

    Listen, bub, unlike carolinethedog and his imaginary 180 day teachers, I worked for more than a decade at an educational software company and with the exception of the two weeks we were off for Christmas break and the 4 days of Thanksgiving, I or someone else worked with teachers and their problems and that would often include 2 or 3 hours after the school day was over and weekends because they would be there by themselves and not having to deal with the problems they had AND the kids. You and he can imagine all day long that these people put in 9-5 hours and work 3-4 days a week and make hundreds of thousands per year and that they have the fishes and loaves. I can tell you that I met 3 to 5 different teachers from any one schools for the same class because they would lose a lot of young people who got tired of dealing with people like you and parents who had nothing better to do than complain about the system and yet, they wouldn’t take the time to help their kids like the ones whose kids were doing better than their brats (There, I SAID IT). What’s funny is not every teacher belongs to a union and there are more than one union for those that do and yet, you guys want to blame the union for all the ills, even the educational system. BTW, I’ll reiterate this for those of you who have a hard time keeping up: 36% of the government employees belong to a union and there are several states where they’re less than that and yet, those states have problems with their budgets. Now, how do you geniuses figure that these unions are the problems in states where they’re nearly non-existent OR don’t even have collective bargaining rights but have deficits that are as bad or worse than the ones that do.

    BTW, genius, up until Rush Limbaugh gave all of us moderates/liberals the ultimatum to toe his line or get out of the party, I was a Republican and I, along with a lot of people, took him up on his offer and became an independent (FYI, the fastest growing group that register as independents are moderate/liberal Republicans because people like you sicken them).

  141. Edgy says:

    Now, how do you geniuses figure that these unions are the problems in states where they’re nearly non-existent OR don’t even have collective bargaining rights but have deficits that are as bad or worse than the ones that do.
    —————————————————

    For sure, economically some states are in better shape than others (although none are in great shape). But in those states that are struggling, specifically for this thread concerning WISCONSIN (if only you would cease to divert attention away from that), the public unions are certainly one of the problems which will bankrupt the state if they are not restricted.

    You are seriously out to lunch if you think that the figures of 89k annual avg compensation package for a public teacher in WI (and over a 100k/yr package for an Milwaukee Public school teacher alone) are not part of what is financially crippling the state of WI. That was the main focus of this thread, but you keep diverting away from this, and are seriously in denial of the obvious: The private-sector taxPAYER in WI cannot afford the public-sector taxEATER in WI any longer. The gravy train has got to stop.

    If a public-sector employee doesn’t like the limits that are being set upon their compensation package now and for the immediate future during a time of recession, THEN DON’T TAKE THE FREAKIN JOB! There are plenty of laid-off 80k/yr computer programmers struggling to feed the family who would love at this point to take a 45k/yr job teaching computer science at a local public high school. But thanks to the public unions this will never be a possibility.

  142. You are seriously deluded, if you believe that what they make in compensation outweighs the OTHER problems that add far more to the budgets than teacher’s pay and compensation. Why don’t you stop flapping your lips and look up what are the MAIN SOURCES for Wisconsin’s current crisis. If you’d take your head of the Fox News channel’s butt and looked, you’d find that everyone BUT Fox will tell you that the pay for public employees in Wisconsin is the least of the worries for the state (Especially when you consider that IF the governor gets what he wants, the tax breaks that he’s signed and will sign will more than offset the savings that he will get).

    I’d point to the fact that the 5 states that outlaw collective bargaining all have deficits and except for Texas, they’re not exactly paying their teachers the kind of money that you envision as the fishes and the loaves. It might interest you to know that MOST benefits for public employees are governed by LAW and not collective bargaining (Especially true when you consider that there are 5 states that BAN collective bargaining). Now, I know that it’s not Fox but the AP had this to say:

    AP: Wisconsin Faces Shortfall “Due Largely To Anticipated Medicaid Expenses And A Court-Ordered Repayment To A Fund That Was Raided Four Years Ago,” And Walker’s Tax Policies “Actually Make The State’s Ongoing Budget Problem Worse.”

    Again, not Fox but:

    Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Outlines Major Causes Of Wisconsin’s Budget Shortfall, Which “Include Two Big Obligations” Unrelated To Unions That Total Almost $260M.

    [T]he Legislature’s budget office reported Monday that the budget shortfall for this fiscal year ending June 30 will total at least $78 million and could rise to as much as $336.5 million, depending on when the state pays up on two massive bills.

    “Wisconsin, probably more than any other state in the country, is actively and aggressively moving to get people back to work,” Walker said at the bill signing.

    The state already faces a more than $3 billion shortfall in the 2011-’13 budget, so approving the tax incentive bills likely means Walker will have to find more spending cuts later.

    The report Monday by the Legislative Fiscal Bureau found that over the next three fiscal years, the state will collect $203 million less in taxes than previously estimated. More than half of that drop in expected tax collections is because of tax-cut bills that Walker has signed or is poised to sign.

    The report found that the state is projecting that spending on health care for the poor and related administrative costs, prisons and the state public defender’s office will go nearly $200 million over budget this year.

    In addition, the state has two big obligations looming: a $58.7 million payment to the State of Minnesota after the end of a tax-reciprocity agreement between Wisconsin and its neighbor; as well as an additional $200 million that the state is under court order to return to a medical malpractice fund after an illegal fund transfer in 2007 by lawmakers and Gov. Jim Doyle. The state has to pay all of that money, but not necessarily in this fiscal year. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2/1/11]

    Gee, it seems that if you actually look at sources that aren’t Fox News, you find that truth…..

  143. BTW, with all the talk, let’s put into perspective how healthcare costs are driving up costs EVERYWHERE (Please note that while Fox and Friends might want to blame the new healthcare law, most of it hasn’t even been implemented and has nothing to do with increases). Check out how this is hurting private businesses let along public employees.

  144. Edgy,

    Oh, ok, well I’ll see your Fox News and raise you an MSNBC, CNN, and whatever other liberal media you plub into.

    Aside from the ad hominem which you incessantly use (a sign you cannot hold a debate), you continue to obfuscate…you keep jabbering away, avoiding the main issue of the thread, not to mention mine and other people’s valid comments on how compensation for certain public union workers, including teachers, is getting out of hand. Is it the only cause for a budget crisis? No, nobody said that. But is it one of the problems that will only get worse if we don’t address it? Well, you say no. I say yes, and while you may need your Keith Olbermanns to inform you, I don’t need Fox News or any other mogul to tell me the obvious. The public-sector needs to be reigned in. Period.

  145. @edgy

    Damn, I leave for a few days and others take up where I left off. You are getting trounced on this thread from a bunch of people.

    You STILL have never addressed that increasing benefits, stipends, and contractual increases in yearly pay are funded by taxpayers for public sector teachers to which we cannot sustain. Try spending more than you make and then go back and balance your checkbook. Good luck with that!

    Stop playing the victim card here as no one has eluded that teachers are the problem and no one accuses teachers of exploiting anything. Just another liberal type attack to divert away from the fiscal issue.

    I know you probably STILL think I hate all unions. In fact, I hate the public sector unions as they get richer, fund elections against the will of the public employees and then setup guarantees for public sector employees that are not sustainable. This is the process that public sector unions believe to be “caring” for the employee, when they (public sector union bosses) just get richer and sustain their way of life.

    Where’s the checks and balances with public sector unions? Where’s the competition and choice for public sector employees?

    Oh yeah, you liberal ignorant folk like to blame that the rich aren’t paying their fair share. Grasping at straws. Stupidy at its finest.

    Education time:

    When a private sector employee gets a raise in any job they are at, it depends on merit and the company’s ability to pay due to growth and success.

    When a public sector employee gets a raise in any job they are at, it depends (hopefully) on merit and the allotted pool of money for their department OR THEY RAISE TAXES or EXPERIENCE A BUDGET SHORTFALL.

    Public sector employees DO NOT bring revenue to any form of commerce. We DO need a small public sector work force to sustain the state’s operations, BUT the PRIVATE SECTOR MUST GROW in order to allow PUBLIC SECTOR employees to receive raises OR THEY MUST RAISE TAXES.

    Get it! Public sector union members are being exploited by power hungry public sector unions.

    Why is it that public sector unions can GUARANTEE their funding but the states CANNOT GUARANTEE their balanced budgets? Why is it that public sector unions WILL NOT negotiate any pay deductions in benefits or wage, but they have no problem with taxing more from the private sector?

    Folks, this isn’t an “assault on unions” at all, but rather an ASSAULT ON THE PRIVATE SECTOR!

  146. I believe the private sector should institute more private schools AND allow those who enroll their kids into these schools to pay less taxes towards the public sector. Once again, choice is always best and will offer the greatest result.

    Shrink the public sector and still allow the same services to those but rather in the private sector. This is called competition and the consumer always wins with competition. This is REALLY caring for the individual and kids would ultimately win with a better education.

    Complacency would diminish and a real comparison of schools from private to public would be very transparent.

    Once again, when the people are put first this country thrives and is much stronger. Nanny states are for liberals who can’t handle making decisions.

  147. Okay people. On average (excluding those without a high school education), public employees are paid 25-30% LESS than private sector employees. If you don’t believe me, read this state-sanctioned 3rd party report;

    http://epi.3cdn.net/9e237c56096a8e4904_rkm6b9hn1.pdf

    Starting in January, WI had a budget surplus of $121 million dollars. Also available proof through the state’s dept. of treasury office. Go look it up.

    Walker spent all of the surplus money, PLUS the amount of our current deficit, on tax breaks for big businesses (namely those who funded his campaign – also fact.)

    Now, I believe there is no problem giving tax breaks to growing companies, investing in business is completely logical for fiscal growth and security. However, like anything else, it needs to be done in moderation.

    Public employees and unions have conceded cuts to salary and insurance. Why is this not negotiable? Why do Walker and the Republican state senate insist on this heinous subversion? Why is there no room for civil discourse? The lack of democracy is apalling. That’s what disappoints me the most. I thought our state was better than this nonsense. But clearly, people will always be idiots.

    I am a teacher. My mom is a teacher. My dad is a school custodian. Over the past 10 years my mom has taken pay cuts in order to keep her insurance package (which she pays into). Currently, the 5 states whose teachers do not have collective bargaining representation are the 5 worst academically performing states in the nation. Also available in documentation. Wisconsin is currently ranked 2nd in ACT/SAT and national testing/literacy. Why? Because we have quality teachers. Because teachers are professionals with more education than most of you who don’t understand principles of economics and democracy. So go ahead and take our rights away. You’ll see a massive exodus of good teachers from this state, and soon Wisconsin will turn into a poorly educated state of dunces. What will happen to all of those big, high-tech industries then? There will be no educated workers to work for them, so they too will leave, and Wisconsin will be as ass-backwards as ever.

    Also, for those of you who think teachers are overcompensated, you are wrong. We work, on average 11-12 hours per day…60+ hrs per week. There are no 3 months off in the summer. We pursue continuing education (mandated, and out of our own pockets) as well as teach summer school, plan and develop curriculum, and attend workshops and conferences so that we may better ourselves for YOUR children…for the future of our state, nation, and world.

    Try managing a classroom of 40 children. I wager most of you naysayers wouldn’t last more than an hour, let alone 7 classes a day for 5 days a week.
    So, if you find it SO incredibly difficult to supervise your child for one day, then good. Go ahead an pay increases in your property taxes, because schools will still need money to function from somewhere.
    Thank your idiot governor. I hope this is what you wanted, halfish of Wisconsin.

    To those in support of democracy, worker’s rights, and education, we thank you. Especially Mr. Woodson. What a hell of a guy.

    PS – union members fought and died (were killed by state millita back in the 1800s) for your rights to a 40 hour work week and the concept of the ‘weekend’. Right here in Wisconsin. This is where it all began.

  148. shoonka says:
    Mar 12, 2011 4:00 AM

    “Okay people. On average (excluding those without a high school education), public employees are paid 25-30% LESS than private sector employees. If you don’t believe me, read this state-sanctioned 3rd party report.”
    —-
    Third party, my foot. Secondly, as they lump all public-sector workers into those percentage figures (including your county summer worker at the local public pool for example), the figures will be misleading. But even if it were unbiased, as a report from 2009 showed, when the highest paid public employee in the city of Madison–even more than the mayor–is a public transit bus driver making over 155,000, then even if this supposed figure told the whole story, then 30% is not enough!

    Secondly, as one who used to be a public high school teacher in the state of Wisconsin (before opting for the private-sector for what I assure you were non-monetary reasons (!) ), I find the following statement of yours immensely laughable:

    “Also, for those of you who think teachers are overcompensated, you are wrong. We work, on average 11-12 hours per day…60+ hrs per week. There are no 3 months off in the summer. We pursue continuing education (mandated, and out of our own pockets) as well as teach summer school, plan and develop curriculum, and attend workshops and conferences so that we may better ourselves for YOUR children…for the future of our state, nation, and world.”

    Are you kidding me? The only ones I knew who might do even half of all of that were the newer teachers with still a vestige of idealism left (who probably were conservative history teachers voting Republican, before quickly disenchanted with the public system.) I assure you no veteran public teacher I knew was ever doing all of that. Too funny!!

  149. @dwhitehurst – you hit the nail on the head. Apparently, shoonka took a report of embellished figures to sound her ignorance. The funny thing is that my wife is a public school teacher and SHE even realizes that the current structure is unsustainable. Also, she has never worked 60 hours per week and is refunded all expenses by the school or during tax season. The irony is that Shoonka is an uneducated fool who educates others….glad my kid doesn’t attend that class. Also, ALL teachers have summer breaks, winter breaks, spring break and sick time and some federal holidays. Currently my wife is home right now sleeping while I am at work in the PRIVATE sector, and I don’t fault her for it as she is appreciative but still realistic.

    Shoonka must be new to doing research and coming onto sites to fire her rhetoric as the rest of us are veterans and know the tactics of the ignorant. The second I found that a majority of teachers under 5 years were making over $70k a year, I laughed at Shoonka’s comment.

    The left’s campaign slogan:

    Promise, promise, promise…get elected…blame conservatives when promises don’t come to fruition.

    It’s funny how the left NEVER uses history to make a point but will fabricate anything today to assign blame to anyone but themselves.

    Class is dismissed.

  150. @firesparano,

    I might disagree with someone on the use of the label “left” or “right” as much as I do with someone simply labeling me a Fox News drone, which I most assuredly am not. (But even if someone like you were to disagree with me, I realize you’re civil and rational enough to not resort to such ad hominem which simply assasinates all thought on an issue.) Granted, a more legitimate reason to use labels is simply since they simply save time (and words!) for a poster and a reader time. The only problem I have with the terms “left” and “right” is that there is more than one kind of “left” and more than one kind of “right”. It’s just that the dominant voice on either side gets the representation. Hence, all the many mainstream media sources for the left, and the one Fox News source for the right. (Ironic how the mainstream media is so up in arms about the one and only one media source that does not embrace their viewpoint?) Yet like I said, there is more than one kind of left and right. For example, a green dude like Ralph Nader hardly fits the cookie cutter left anymore than a paleo-conservative isolationist like Pat Buchanon fits the cookie cutter right. I actually respect Ralph Nader for sticking to his principles even if I don’t espouse them. He will never sell out. As for myself, I get annoyed by being labeled a Fox News drone, precisely because Fox News is mostly the voice of “NeoConservatism” whereas I personally am more “Paleo-conservative” (i.e., moderately-isolationist in terms of foreign policy + economic libertarian—-Rand Paul would be the one of the few representatives who represents such a position today.) So most of the time I throw up if I have the misfortune of listening to Sean Hannity/Bill OReilly on Fox News as much as I do when listening to a Keith Olberman on MSNBC or a Katie Couric on CBS. I mean, does anybody other than me actually “read” print anymore (aside from blogs on the internet), in order to not only think for themselves, but first and foremost to train one’s mind in how to think in a critical, dialectical way, rather than lumping any topic into a pre-packaged label? (e.g., Saying “Union” rather than more accurately saying “Public union” or “Private Union”. Or just saying “Democrat” or “Republican”, when there are many kinds of each.) So for example I totally agree with Ralph Nader’s comments yesterday criticizing Obama’s “selective” military intervention justified under the guise of his espoused universalistic idealism (which is hypocritical since to be consistent with such idealism we should be intervening in any and every country in the Middle East whose military is attacking its people at any given time, which we don’t, and constitutionally-speaking have no warrant to do so.) I even agree with Putin’s take (despite his foolish use of extreme rhetoric which his arguably valid viewpoint).

    My point is–what we see here on blog posts where someone simply spews information and resorts to ad hominem when another poster doesn’t agree or simply asks for a principled basis for how they interpret that information, is symptomatic of a nation which increasingly is unable to think critically, largely due to the public education system from gradeschool all the way through university. The problem is not education per se–I mean, the Public education system has done a fine job of pumping students with base factual knowledge, of teaching students WHAT to think. That’s precisely the problem!!!! The teachers are taught what to say, and the students are taught what to think by the teachers. I know this since, as I said, I was formerly a public high school teacher in WI who himself became quickly disenchanted with all the uncritical “programming” which teaching in the public system amounts to (much akin to the problems with our computer/tv age). Granted, the passive-aggressive bullying from union devotees was disgusting too. I used to teach debate too–I was amazed at the inability that students not only had for such a discipline, but their lack of desire to even learn it. All the while neither the teachers nor the students ever learn HOW to think, that is, in a critical, dialectical manner as in the classical sense. Hence, the discussions on blog posts like this never amount to the fair, logical, civil form of a classical debate, but simply amount to regurgitated information and slogans used to support what one has been taught to believe and thus uncritically chooses to believe.

    Anyways, I rant.

  151. @ dwhitehurst

    I have to say it was rather interesting to read your point of view from a broader spectrum then just on one point of contention. I must say that I pay attention to history and actions more than words to come to conclusions. I choose to follow some but also choose to speak from what I see rather than what I hear and read. I make reference to the left and right as a term of understanding and not so much as a specific belief as blog readers are subjected to one dimensional points of view as they don’t feel or see the inflection and emotion in points being made and trying to rid emotion from ideals would be absurd to believe…but I digress. Anyways, I am a veteran of the USMC and have lived under a dictatorship along with our Republic and have found that preserving freedom is vastly harder than living within the confines of it. I DO NOT take it for granted and can’t stand the ignorant that do as it is pure ignorance that escapes no left or right belief system, but a liberal point of view has taken shape in this country that has completely forgotten the mold of what esprit de corps is unless it is completely convenient (see 9-11). We have fare weather Americans in our midst that don’t understand how we got this far and I don’t want to befriend those that are stripping away the fabric of our nation for the sake of befriending someone. Do not think for a second that I hate liberals or their ideals as I have many relatives that hold these beliefs close, but keep in mind that I defended this country from enemies foreign and domestic for nine years and I will be damned to see that effort go to waste. Believe what you want and be willing to debate your issues, but realize that history favors the conservatives as that is our legacy and “fundamentally transforming” a society is ludicrous and irresponsible as it needs no such thing. We are flawed but free to be flawed. People are collectively good as they root our the riff raff when needed and that is the checks and balances that no government can preside over, but rather should embrace and nourish.

    We all would be remiss if we allowed our current state to continue as we are doomed at this rate. We have no leadership in leadership positions and the entitlements issue that used to be ridiculous is what is killing this country from within. No one wants to have to fail anymore. I hate to say it, but most of the rich have FAILED multiple times and figured it out since they didn’t give up. Our country is founded on those that DID FAIL and got back up. Not some feel good story that associates failure with the end game. I have failed many times and stood back up and fixed the issue and taught others my experiences HENCE, I made the ultimate difference with experience led education.

    My whole point with my viewpoint here is that America was founded by failures, poor, lawbreakers and immigrants that collectively believed and understood freedom. We have not that same practice today as we aren’t put to the test nor will we accept such a task as we no longer have to.

    The last I checked, no body was inspired by those who never had it hard and didn’t get back up and overcome adversity. All of our holidays we celebrate were from aspiring men and women who refused to play house and sacrificed for their country.

    How is the liberal agenda set forth from all understanding going to inspire you to change and remember this time in history as a great turn for America…NO ONE! BUT, this may be a memorable time for REAL AMERICANS as we thwarted off the cyclical nonsense that permeated throughout our country and almost overcame us, but not! God Bless this country as it is the war torn country that survives constant attack to be the standard to which all others should aspire to emulate.

    Anyways, I rant too.

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