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Educated?

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Kim Strassel’s excellent column today effectively makes the case that both Santorum and Romney are playing (to lose) Obama’s class warfare game. One peripheral phrase leapt out at me, and spurred me to write this. Strassel says:

Team Obama may be abandoning [White working-class Americans] altogether, instead looking for 2012 victory in a progressive coalition of educated, socially liberal voters, combined with poorer ethnic voters, in particular Hispanics

Hold on.”Educated” socially liberal voters? This theme of educated people typically tilting leftwards is one that needs dispelling. Are we talking about indoctrinated when we use the term educated?

Churchill’s old saw was that you’d be heartless if you weren’t a [modern day] liberal when young, brainless if you weren’t a conservative when old. That progressive liberalism is favored by artists, college kids and the ill informed, while conservatives tend to be older, tax paying, more world-wise if less up to date on the latest trends, all detract from the notion of the “educated liberal.” But it’s progressive liberalism’s policies and actions that really demonstrate how false this premise is.

Fact is, anyone who is truly educated in the goings-on of the world, anyone who has any knowledge about the way people and organizations work, knows full well that progressive liberalism or statism, cannot work. In fact, at least from this American’s view, the entire concept behind leftism, collectivism, Marxism, et al, is one that doesn’t stand the test of even the most basic logic and has been disproven countless times in history, right on up to present day.

While it’s now fashionable to be one of the 99 percent, people used to understand that communism is a great idea on paper, but when implemented, it leaves something to be desired. Perhaps it was more evident when we had the example of the Soviet Union staring us in the face. Yet a few decades later we have folks protesting capitalism in the streets. American leftism may not be the communism of the U.S.S.R, but it clearly takes us in that direction. If adherents of statism in America can’t internalize the hard-earned lessons of a mere 30 years ago, or even the lessons being learned in Europe right now, then how can they possibly claim to be educated?

And of course the majority of progressive-liberal policies simply haven’t worked. The idea that handouts help the poor, very popular with the Obama administration, despite a half century-long war on poverty that’s yielded no results. Or the concept that public schools just need more money, despite some of the most well funded, and worst performing schools, right in the very bastions of liberalism.

Conservatism in D.C. and our southern states isn’t the cause of the extreme poverty, terribly performing public schools, or budgetary and fiscal woes found in the heart of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Detroit. Not to say there isn’t poverty in Republican states, but if liberal policies worked, then poverty would only exist in red states, meanwhile blue states wouldn’t be facing the financial and educational issues now confronting them either. Would the educated statists have us believe that somehow George Bush is to blame for the lifestyle or quality of public school education for residents in New York or Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods, despite decades-long liberal Democrat control (Anthony Wiener and Charlie Rangel to wit)?

The truly educated rely on facts and logic, and I believe most tenets of conservatism are likewise based on facts and logic. However, often progressive-liberal positions are plainly based on deceit.

The notion that the rich don’t pay their fair share is commonly touted by the liberal left as if the science is settled. Yet the fact is that nearly half of America’s working populace pay no federal income taxes at all; and it’s not the rich half. Yes, lower income Americans may pay other taxes; so too, do the rich, along with punitive federal, capital gains and estate taxes as well. On top of this, the very term rich, and millionaires and billionaires, refers to people making $250k or more a year (less if they are single). All of this is so out rightly deceitful, and yet despite the fact that the richest 1 percent of Americans pays nearly 40 percent of federal income taxes collected (a share that’s grown considerably over recent decades), teenagers squatting in the parks are screaming that rich people pay less taxes than the secretaries they employ.

Another liberal deceit is that higher taxes and increased regulations don’t hurt business or cost anyone money. Regulations actually create jobs, and higher taxes are absorbed in one way or another, the (and I am being generous here) thinking goes. In reality, the big picture is that some regulations are necessary, but the King Kong style regulatory and taxation regime adopted by this administration has one effect, make America less competitive globally, at the expense of it’s citizens and to the benefit of it’s competitors like China.

Even the liberal view as to the cause of our economic crisis is likewise based in deceit. Sure, the symptom of the problem came out in failures in the credit markets, but this stemmed from one thing – liberal policies encouraging lenders to loosen standards so that more people (i.e. those less qualified) could borrow. No mortgage backed security ever caused someone to foreclose (unless that person traded in said MBS), but plenty of forclosures are what caused the credit markets to seize. Yet progressives commonly blame the downturn on a lack of deregulation by Bush or Reagan depending on who you talk to. The president himself has even given claim to exactly that. To add a bizzarre twist to the already insane, progressives believe that Dodd-Frank is the corrective to all this, even as the Fed recommends further easing of lending standards.

Obama’s own deceit, too vast to be covered in a single article, or perhaps book, has been most recently displayed in some comments he made justifying his latest unconstitutional move to install Richard Cordray as head of CFPB:

“We know what would happen if Republicans in Congress were allowed to keep holding Richard’s nomination hostage. More of our loved ones would be tricked into making bad financial decisions. More dishonest lenders could take advantage of some of the most vulnerable families. And the vast majority of financial firms who do the right thing would be undercut by those who don’t.”

All those dishonest lenders just salivating over the hordes of newbie working “families” who apparently can’t read what they are signing aside, are we really to believe any element of this was really worth setting this lawless precedent? Failing a clear judiciary overturn, something I think is unlikely, our republic has been irrevocably damaged and all we get on this point from the left is deceit. Lastly, while the educated should be tolerant, Liberals also tend to be the least tolerant people in existence.

This whole idea of the 99 percent and the 1 percent is just the latest example, and is so divisive that it’s scary. How is the persecution of the 1 percent any different from the roots of racism in early America? How is dividing each and every American based on gender, ethnic and victim group, and then assigning special rights and privleges to certain favored groups a demonstration of equality and tolerance? It is in fact the very opposite of tolerance, it only serves to further divide us, and if left unchecked over the long term, will only result in what class warfare always results in, a lower quality of life for all involved.

Of course progressive intolerance is at it’s worst when discussing any of the issues above. The disdain liberals have for conservatives is palpable, and always with an assumption that the conservative is somehow ill informed. I guess conservatives treat liberals similarly now, but most conservatives seem more willing to at least engage in discourse. This is plainly evidenced by conservative media outlets such as FOXNews or the Wall Street Journal, which routinely take pains to show both sides of the story, something that’s verboten in liberal bastions such as MSNBC, Huffington Post, Politico, and of course The New York Times. I guess when you believe in something that can’t hold up to basic questions of logic, you’re not so interested in discourse.

Educated? Not so much. Ignorant, deceitful and intolerant? Yes, very much so. Let’s not let this false narrative of the intellectual left continue.

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About The Obnoxious American

  • Arch Conservative

    Thank you Obnoxious, for penning the best article I have ever read on BC.

    Now all we have to do is wait for the resident BC moonbats to begin to swarm around your brilliant article like so many useless, purposeless flies on a mound of poo neath’ the hot July sun. No doubt they will have a plethora of justifications for the modern leftist mindset as savior of humanity.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Boy oh boy oh boy.

    1 – LIBERALS are uneducated? If one disagrees with 96% of all the world’s scientists about anthropomorhic global warming, is one more likely a liberal or a conservative? If one believes that evolution is a crock, that the world is only 6,000-odd years old, is one more likely a liberal or a conservative?

    OAR, if you’ll do some statistical research, you’ll find that generally speaking, the educational level of the populations of red states are LOWER than that of the populations of blue states.

    =============================

    2 – You said “Fact is, anyone who is truly educated in the goings-on of the world, anyone who has any knowledge about the way people and organizations work, knows full well that progressive liberalism or statism, cannot work.

    Gee, OAR – can you show me ANY first-world nation that doesn’t have a leftist social safety net? No. Can you show me ANY first-world nation that operates on the small-government ideals that America’s conservatives want so badly? No. But I can show you LOTS of nations that DO have the kind of small-government, mostly-unregulated, business-‘friendly’, union-‘hostile’ environments…and they’re ALL third-world nations.

    So if our oh-so-leftist way of governance can’t work, then why do ALL first-world nations (outside of the oil-rich Middle East) get along just fine with those very same leftist ideals, whereas there are many more nations that DO operate with your conservative ideals…and they’re ALL third-world nations?

    Why is that, OAR?

    ==================================

    3. BTW, one of your major mistakes was equating leftism with collectivism and marxism. That’s like equating conservatism with fascism.

    And you’re assuming that the OWS movement is somehow related to ignorance of the pitfalls of communism. You’re flat wrong. The OWS movement is a rather mild result of what happens when income inequality reaches beyond a certain point. When the standard of living of the general population stagnates for decades while the income of the wealthy skyrockets, you’re going to get social unrest. Read a bit of history and you’ll find this again and again and again.

    ====================================

    4. You said, “Not to say there isn’t poverty in Republican states, but if liberal policies worked, then poverty would only exist in red states, meanwhile blue states wouldn’t be facing the financial and educational issues now confronting them either.

    Oh? Again, if you’d do some statistical research, you’d find that generally speaking, poverty rates, education rates, teenage pregnancy rates, obesity rates, violent crime rates, murder rates, birth mortality rates, health insurance coverage rates, and life expectancy rates are ALL worse in red states than in blue states.

    So if blue-state governance is SO bad, they why is life in red states generally worse despite the fact that red states generally receive more in federal funding than they pay out in taxes????

    (Note – there really is a reason, and it’s got ZERO to do with political leanings…but how about I give you some time to think on what could possibly result in the disparities I listed above….)

    ==============================

    5 – You seem to think that the rich are paying quite enough and the rest aren’t paying enough. Thomas Jefferson and Adam Smith – both strong proponents of a progressive tax system – would have disagreed with you. TJ in particular noted that it is only right that those who benefit the most should rightly pay the most.

    Furthermore, it appears you may need to familiarize yourself with American tax history in the 20th century, because when taxes were higher, were there any headlines about the rich going to soup kitchens? No. Even in the 1950’s when the top marginal tax rate was 90%, did this drive America into a depression? No. Instead, we had budget surpluses, paid off most of the WWII debt (which was significantly HIGHER in today’s dollars than the one we have now), and we BOOMED economically.

    Now, however, conservatives would have us believe that to raise the tax rate from 35% to 39% would drive us down to the depths of economic purgatory.

    And while we’re on the subject of taxes, DO bear in mind that while we have the highest NOMINAL corporate tax rate in the developed world, we have in reality the second-lowest EFFECTIVE corporate tax rate in the developed world…only that economic powerhouse Iceland has a lower effective rate. Germany, which despite Europe’s woes is still doing quite well economically, has one of the top five effective corporate tax rates.

    Yeah, I know, I’m just a silly hardly-edjimicated librul….

    =====================================

    6 – You said, “Sure, the symptom of the problem came out in failures in the credit markets, but this stemmed from one thing – liberal policies encouraging lenders to loosen standards so that more people (i.e. those less qualified) could borrow. No mortgage backed security ever caused someone to foreclose (unless that person traded in said MBS), but plenty of forclosures are what caused the credit markets to seize. Yet progressives commonly blame the downturn on a lack of deregulation by Bush or Reagan depending on who you talk to.

    Actually, OAR, if you’ll listen to progressive pundits, you’ll hear them blame CLINTON for agreeing to go along with conservative economic policies and deregulation. BTW – it was only after Glass-Steagal was repealed that banks could really start gambling with peoples’ money – that’s when ‘derivatives’ really got going.

    And if you’ll look, at the beginning of the housing bubble, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac combined only had a minority of the subprime mortgages. If you want to look who was pushing those subprime mortgages, you need to look at companies like Countrywide and ASC et al who were pushing those subprime mortgages like there was no tomorrow. That was not government regulation at work, OAR – it was the lack thereof.

    ==================================

    7 – You said, “Lastly, while the educated should be tolerant, Liberals also tend to be the least tolerant people in existence.

    Really? Didja know the founder of the white supremacist site stormfront.org endorsed Ron Paul?

    And while we’re speaking of tolerance, who’s more tolerant of LGBT’s? Conservatives? Really?

    And what about people of color? Are you aware that in April of 2011, 46% of Mississippi REPUBLICANS stated that they STILL thought that interracial marriage should be banned?

    And who are more likely to support legalization of marijuana? The libertarians do…but what about the Republicans?

    And let’s not forget the perpetual efforts by Republicans to pass ‘anti-Sharia’ laws and require creationism to be taught in schools.

    Yeah, but it’s really the LIBERALS who are SO intolerant, huh?

    FYI, OAR – I grew up strongly conservative…I’ve lived both sides of the coin. Your accusation that liberals are the ‘most intolerant’ is nothing more than showing your ignorance of the LIBERAL belief that YOUR freedom ends where MINE begins.

    ====================================

    8 – You said, “This is plainly evidenced by conservative media outlets such as FOXNews or the Wall Street Journal, which routinely take pains to show both sides of the story.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!! That’s FUNNY! You’ve GOT to be joking!

    Oh, wait – you’re NOT joking????

    Tell you what – look at this list of Fox News Channel inaccuracies, manipulations, and outright lies. I really don’t suppose you will, for if your stated opinion is any indication, your eyes would likely glaze over as soon as you realized the site lists several thousand such failures of journalistic integrity on the part of News Corp’s flagship channel.

    =================================

    So in conclusion, OAR, this ignorant, deceitful, and intolerant liberal would like to ask you again about the reason for the general disparity between the overall living standards of red states and blue states. You see, I wrote an article about it…and got my logical ass handed to me on a plate by Clavos when he pointed out my logical error. If you take the time to read the comments to the article, you’ll find that I admitted my error and agreed with Clavos that the living standard disparities were NOT the result of red-state or blue-state governance…

    …and then I give the real reason why. It’s surprising, and something I didn’t see coming.

    But seeing as how we liberals are ignorant, deceitful, and intolerant, I guess that means that you don’t really need to read all that, that all I’ve done this entire comment is to lie to you…’cause you can’t be wrong, and I surely can’t be right.

    BTW – did you ever finish reading the book on the Shi’a by Vali Nasr, and did you find the quote I told you about?

  • Arch Conservative

    OAR, while the picture of Krugman scratching his head implies some type of exasperation on his part and is a decent photo to accompany this article, I can’t help but suspect that somewhere there exists a picture of the man in drag. Maybe from his college days, maybe a drunken Halloween party, maybe something more personal and disturbing. I’m almost certain that it exists. Your mission, if you choose to accept it is to find that picture of Paul-ette Krugman in flagranti and use it along with your next article addressing the incomparably soul crushing leftist ideology.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    Try addressing #4 above.

  • Igor

    OAR and Arch are living in the 1950s when the rightists, after striving mightily, managed to convince a few Americans that ALL social democratic ideas were marxist communism at heart.

    They neglected to see that it was corporate collectivism that threatened America with it’s own idea of a New Soviet America.

  • Costello

    You couldn’t link to one source, supporting your statements? That reveals quite a bit.

    If you are going to call a group of people Uneducated, it would behoove you to learn about proper punctuation.

  • Bill

    We’ve come a long way from the fifties. Now we have a public sector that (with benefits) lives, on average, better than 85% of the private sector.
    They all applaud you Glenn. Igor, do you do work for the government or live on a taxpayer funded pension too?

    Public sector is too generous with my money.

  • Arch Conservative

    Bill, whatever gave you the idea that it was your money? Just because you get out of bed in the morning and go to a job for 8-12 hours a day whilst other able bodied men lounge at home all day in their hope and change t-shirts does not in any way give you the right to demand financial rewards for you toil.

    Furthermore Bill, I can only infer from your previous post that you clearly do not recognize the value of our government employees. Sure they get something like 57 paid holidays (just a coincidence that they get a paid holiday for every state?) and they constantly demand pay raises even when the private sector employees that fund their salaries through tax revenue are getting laid off left and right, but think of the immediate and absolute state of chaos and decay our nation would fall into were it not for the government employee. Have you no sense Bill? Do you not realize that you and everyone you know is utterly incapable of functioning without the gentle hand of your friendly local and not so local government steward administering to your every need that would otherwise go unfulfilled if you were foolish enough to attempt to fulfill those needs yourself.

    Was it your intention when you got out of bed this morning Bill to climb to the apex of folly and scream for all the world to hear ” I am Bill.” For that is certainly what you have done.

    No sir! Not today will I stand by as you slander those fine, fine individuals that work for the government. For they are the picture of competence and compassion, without which you would not have been able to make your way to your computer to belittle them, much less do anything else today!

  • troll

    (for the record – oar had nothing to do with this pos – it’s all toa’s fault)

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Looks like Bill and Arch both need a little education as to WHY government employees should be paid well.

    1 – With a very, very few exceptions, NOBODY gets rich working for the government. If you choose to work in the public sector, you choose a career where you’ll probably live decently, but you’ll never be rich. That’s the price of working for the government.

    2 – Do you REALLY want to pay people minimum wage for delivering social security checks? Do you REALLY want to pay people maybe $12/hour to police the streets, to risk their lives to put out fires, to assess the value of your property, to determine whether you’ve passed the driving test, and so forth? Do you really think that teachers – who normally spend two to four hours after every school day at work – should need to have second jobs in order to support their own households? Guess what – if they have to have second jobs, then they’re going to do a WORSE job in teaching YOUR kids…and btw – 24% of ALL teachers in Texas are already moonlighting just to make ends meet.

    HERE’S A CLUE FOR BOTH OF YOU – if you don’t pay government employees a good living wage, then the level of corruption will rise significantly…as either of you would KNOW if you’d spent much time in a third-world nation. Either pay your government employees well (and hold them to high standards)…or be prepared to deal with a lot more corruption as a result.

    YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. Pay crappy wages, you get crap most of the time. Pay a good living wage (and maintain high standards) and you get good professional service most of the time.

  • Clavos

    …you get good professional service most of the time.

    HAH!!

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos –

    You can laugh all you want to…but would you rather be pulled over by a reasonably well-paid American cop or a poorly-paid Mexican cop?

    Would you rather your child be taught by a teacher who at least has the opportunity to stay after school hours to mentor kids and grade tests and homework, or would you rather your child be taught by a teacher who has to leave immediately after school to go work at her other job?

    Paying people well and holding them to high standards does NOT guarantee they’ll be professional…but it makes it a WHOLE lot more likely.

    And you’re not stupid – you KNOW this.

  • Clavos

    but would you rather be pulled over by a reasonably well-paid American cop or a poorly-paid Mexican cop?

    The Mexican. I’ll never get a ticket from him.

    Would you rather your child be taught by a teacher who at least has the opportunity to stay after school hours to mentor kids and grade tests and homework, or would you rather your child be taught by a teacher who has to leave immediately after school to go work at her other job?

    As measurably and provably bad as American education is these days, where high school graduates are often functionally illiterate, what’s the difference?

    Bad is bad…

  • Arch Conservative

    So you think teachers should be paid based on merit Glenn?

    Oh boy, your friends at the teachers unions are not going to be happy with you.

    The fact is that there is generally no competition for the services that the government provides. The lack of competition pretty much removes all incentive to perform better. Our United States Congress is the supreme example of how paying government employees well does not lead to any benefit for the citizenry.

    I usually ignore your moronic rantings Glenn but that one was such a softball that I couldn’t resist. Now I shall go back to ignoring your dumbassery.

  • Bill

    I see Glenn. So it’s kind of a protection racket thing. Very honorable. In token, I can see why the government has taken the numbers racket from the mafia.
    Also Glenn, as Clavos said, never a good idea for a liberal to throw American public education in our face in any positive light.
    (Other than how science should be taught).

    In times of hardship, the public sector needs to give more. We’re drowning and everyone including government employees are pointing their finger at the rich to give more.

    How about this Glenn. In lieu of arguing, if we were to go ahead and tax the rich a bit more, would it be okay to also infringe on the salaries and benefits of the public sector as well? You’re both doing well.

    I think you folks shouldn’t have a problem with that. You’re pension check would be a bit less. Are you willing to budge? I can think of 23 million people ,who if in your shoes, would do so gladly.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    You probably didn’t know this, although Clavos probably did, that I am certainly for merit pay for teachers. See the last name in my pseudonym? It’s ‘Contrarian’…and I keep that because regardless of what you and the rest of the BC conservatives think, it never was a matter of I love the Dems because Republicans are evil. It’s a matter of who’s right (most of the time) and who’s wrong (most of the time). In fact, there’s not a single election since 1984 where I haven’t voted for at least one Republican. I used to vote straight Republican…until I woke up – but I’ve never voted straight Democratic.

    For instance, if all of a sudden it was 1870, I’d certainly be a Republican, since their values were much more liberal than were those of the Democrats at the time. If it were the late 1950’s, I have no idea which party I’d be – or if I’d be in a party at all – because (with the exception of a Democratic president integrating the armed forces) the Dems didn’t truly embrace the civil rights movement until the Kennedys came along…and even then the worst racists in the nation were the Southern Democrats, as I’ve pointed out many, many times here.

    I am a contrarian, Arch. I go with what I can see to be right…

    …and at this time in history, the Republicans – by way of their denial of AGW, their “thou shalt not tax the rich” mindset, and the fact that no small portion of them want to bomb Iran (last night Perry said he’d take us BACK into Iraq!) – are bat-crap crazy.

    When the Republicans start accepting science and stop making decisions obviously based on the degree that they need to compensate with Really Big Guns, I might well join them…but not before.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Bill and Clavos –

    Also Glenn, as Clavos said, never a good idea for a liberal to throw American public education in our face in any positive light.

    That says a lot about your mindset – Thou Shalt Not Show Anything That [the unpopular person du jour] Does Right.

    So if we can’t point out to you what [the unpopular person du jour does that is RIGHT, when they actually do something good, how would you ever know?

    You wouldn’t…because all you’d ever hear in your echo chamber is how bad they were. For instance, all you EVER hear by the right-wing media is how bad the liberals and Democrats and particularly Obama are…and to a somewhat lesser extent, that’s what you hear from the left-wing media bout conservatives.

    Tell you what, Bill and Clavos – why don’t one or both of you try something completely different – CHALLENGE yourselves to point out where liberals and Democrats and Obama are RIGHT, where they’ve done GOOD things for America…and do it without sarcasm or satire, but honestly.

    Can you do that? Sure you could, if you’d but try.

  • Bill

    Glenn, whatever great things our president has done, I don’t care. I’m pissed about one thing. On average, the public sector lives far too much better than the private sector. It’s hugely uneven.
    Until that point is addressed and rectified I’ll be pissed.
    Glenn you’re right about police, and a few other public sector jobs. Corruption would suck. Not all public sector jobs are even in the position to even be corrupt though. Firemen, Teachers… well …. I could give you a list of all the public sector jobs that I respect and wouldn’t argue over any money issue. My beef concerns those who have positions that anybody could fulfill. There are millions. They are all represented by unions that have negotiated too well .
    If you disagree with this, and still think that the rich, by giving more to government, will greatly impact the private sector’s well being, there’s no more to talk about.
    Here’s my analogy: The rich bake pies for all to eat. The public sector gets there and eats, leaving just a few slices. When the private sector arrives, the public sector says, “The rich didn’t make enough pies.”
    Sincerely

  • http://oneamericansrant.blogspot.com/ One Americans Rant

    Glenn & others,

    This was not by me or my sock puppet, so I want to set it straight that I don’t agree with much, if any, of this article. I’ve been busy for the last week or so, but I will write something about the meat of this today.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Gee, OAR, for a moment I thought you had morphed.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Bill –

    Not all public sector jobs are even in the position to even be corrupt though.

    Name even one that isn’t.

    FYI, I’ve spent enough time building my home in a third-world nation to see first-hand that ANYone can be corrupt…and the greater the poverty, the greater the corruption. Even worse, the greater the corruption of the lower classes, the more such corruption becomes entrenched throughout the society.

    We all complain about corruption in America, but anyone who’s lived in a third-world nation should know that our level of corruption here is NOTHING compared to that of third-world nations.

    You get what you pay for, Bill – and if you’re not willing to pay good middle-class wages for government workers, then your government workers WILL show you just how corrupt things can get. That’s not a threat, but simply an observation from someone who’s seen what happens when government workers are paid a lot less than what they get here.

    And Bill – if the public sector lives SO much better than the private sector, WHY are 25% of all teachers in Texas moonlighting on second jobs when – if they were being paid what they should be paid – they’d be doing what teachers have always done: spent hours after school every day grading tests and preparing for the next day’s class.

    Some in the public sector are certainly overpaid – no argument there! But the VAST majority are not overpaid…and we cut their pay at our society’s peril.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    OAR –

    I’m glad to see it. You’re one of the more level-headed people on here (more so than myself, at least), and I was worried that you’d been fooling us all this time.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    Don’t trust an ignorant White Pseudo-Progressive who tells you that busing benefits blacks. Trust a Black mother, who continues to work on behalf of black students, to tell you what a failure mandated busing was and is.

    The threat of being accused of racism can be a powerful disincentive to people who would take a stand for the truth — and the more they hate racism, the more effective a disincentive it is.

    This article, by the way, is obviously not written by a Progressive (pseudo or otherwise.) He does make some good points, but (length notwithstanding) he doesn’t talk much about how failed social experiments have actually HURT blacks, and that’s why I’m providing these links.

    Too many true bigots can make arguments against those failed social programs. That’s how the pseudo-progressives can use their “guilt by association” intimidation tactics against all those who oppose busing, but for other reasons.

    I’ll consider the views of a sincere progressive, but not those of a pseudo-progressive. I won’t even waste my time reading what they write anymore.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    As for some of what passes for “highly educated,” there is a type of fellow who, having made his way to an upper management spot or government appointment through his Ivy League connections, could not exactly be called “uneducated.”

    His college experience, however, is not unlike the crash course in crime those in different social strata receive through spending time in prison.

    After all, this individual has been admitted to an elite institution of learning (and that’s difficult!) He has been graduated from it, too (but that’s not as daunting as it sounds, if he’s savvy about which courses to take.)

    What’s so difficult about getting into an Ivy League school? The high SAT score requirements ARE a bit of a hurdle to some, but not if they have the cash to PAY for those high scores.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Seems like you’re dishing it out in all directions, Irene.

    In any case, I don’t see why such a fuss about education. I’ve met plenty simple folk I could have quite an engaging conversation with, and then again, plenty of those with formal education I’d rather have nothing to do with.

    Does education a person make? that ought to be the question. I suppose it all depends on the kind of person you start out with.

    Sounds just about right to me.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Irene –

    There’s a benefit of busing that goes far beyond what you hear from this or that parent – and that’s broadening the perspective of the students.

    The most racist school I ever attended was an all-white private school – and yes, I was one of the racists at the time. When you have a school – or any social setting, whether it’s a town or a county or a company or whatever – the more homogenous it is ethnically and racially, the more racist the students/citizens will be. In an ethnically mixed school, sure, there will be racial tensions – but that’s because the mixture of races (and the clash of cultures) cannot be avoided and must be addressed.

    And you know what? Even though there will be ethnic/racial/cultural strife as long as there are people who look/act/speak differently from one another, what the mixing of the cultures does is to force people to adapt and – eventually – accept one another.

    THAT, Irene, more than anything else, is the greatest benefit of busing. Yes, there are exceptions to the rule – there are places where some children have not seen any benefit whatsoever from busing. But in the BIG picture, the more our kids meet and interact with kids of other ethnicities/races/religions/whatever on a daily basis, the more that they learn to understand and accept those who are different.

    Sure, your head is probably exploding right now, but I really don’t care – because what’s wrong with our schools has very little to do with busing, and a whole lot to do with conservatives on one side who want to slash school funding to the bone, and liberals on the other side who support the teachers’ union that won’t allow crappy teachers to be fired…

    …and our culture as a whole is at fault since so many of our kids are ‘latchkey’ kids where both parents work and there’s not one at home to supervise and care for the kids.

    THOSE – and not busing – are the real problems with our school system.

  • zingzing

    education is not a bad thing… i hope that’s not a question around here.

  • Igor

    18-Bill requires some data, not just a flamboyant assertion.

    …On average, the public sector lives far too much better than the private sector…

    Are you claiming that all those big mansions in Atherton are inhabited by public emploees? That’s news to me, since I know several people in Atherton and they are all Entrepeneurs and small to medium businessmen.

    I don’t know one teacher who lives in Atherton. Not one social worker.

    What am I missing here, Bill, or are you fibbing?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Igor –

    Bill’s saying ‘on average’. What the problem is, is that Bill is offended at the idea that most public-sector workers earn middle-class wages…but, as you pointed out, NONE get rich.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/the-obnoxious-american/ The Obnoxious American

    Igor,

    Read the below article to read about government retirement plans that require little investment but after a mere 25 years, are worth over a million bucks. Either I went into the wrong industry, or there is something very, very wrong here.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    OA –

    “Poison the well” much?

    What you’re doing is showing that because a few – A FEW – government employees have a good pension plan, well, THAT means that ALL government employees have it so good! You’re taking the instance of ONE city – NYC, which has a high-as-a-cat’s-back cost of living to begin with – and using that to pass judgment on ALL government employees.

    And the proof of your error? First, ONE QUARTER of all teachers in Texas have second jobs just to make ends meet – but YOU are talking about cutting the pay and benefits of government employees even further.

    Second, did you read ALL of the article you referenced? Or did you just read the parts that suited your purpose? Here’s some that was towards the end of the artice:

    Many public-sector employees – especially frontline employees like teachers, cops and firefighters – have difficult, important and often dangerous jobs. They deserve to be well-compensated. And, for the most part, they are. After six years, police and firefighters can earn more than $90,000, excluding overtime.
    Another irony: Salaries for public employees – math and science teachers, for example – could be raised if so much of their compensation wasn’t backloaded in pension costs.

    WELL, OA – You said: “government plans require little investment”…and used this article as proof – BUT THIS ARTICLE SAYS SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, DOESN’T IT?

    BTW – one-bedroom apartments in Manhattan (including Harlem) START at about $3500 per month. I know this because I was just there for New Year’s Day and I checked out the local cost of living. If you don’t want to live in “Section 8″ housing, you’d better have a pretty good income just to live in Harlem, much less anywhere in the southern (and more affluent) half of Manhattan…and from what we saw and learned from our family in Queens, it isn’t much better there.

    Oh, and one more thing – since government employees are SO overcompensated in your opinion, and since we’ve got million-dollar retirement plans (again, in YOUR opinion), why is it that among all the government retirees I know (including myself) that I know of ZERO millionaires?

    Hm?

  • troll

    Glenn Contrarian understates the problem in Texas where under Gov Perry’s leadership the number of moonlighting teachers has risen to over 40% according to this AP report

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    How are you doing, “troll.” Happy to know you’re still alive and kicking into 2012.

    Better times awaiting, I’m certain. I hope you’ll second.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    troll –

    Thanks – I appreciate that.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I don’t put much credence in fly-by-night commenters, especially when they’re not seen but only heard.

    Besides, Glenn, education is not where you want to build your best case if your argument is on behalf of civil servants at large. Being a teacher is a vocation.

    I know, we’ve heard it time and again, to the point we no longer understand the point. But the point, the fact of the matter is, you’re not going to recruit better teachers by offering them better pay. Pay has got nothing to do with it. The love of it has, indeed, it’s all it takes.

    “Troll” has been hibernating too long in the midst of a Minnesota winter, so I suppose he’s got somewhat of an excuse, and I’m doing my damnedest to extend my understanding. But what’s your excuse, Glenn, so tell, since you live in the tropics? Or is it just, as befits the liberal mindset, always to defend the liberal standpoint? — more money will fix everything.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    I’ve met plenty simple folk I could have quite an engaging conversation with, and then again, plenty of those with formal education I’d rather have nothing to do with.

    Very good Roger. That was exactly my point.

    It’s infuriating enough to watch someone who, having been admitted to an elite school on the strength of a competitive exam he paid someone ELSE to take for him, adopts a haughty attitude towards those who makes a contribution to society through honest albeit humble work.

    It’s absolutely GALLING when that elite fraud, after learning hardly anything besides how to navigate around the power network, has the connections to land in a place of influence, where he will make poorly informed decisions (or grossly self-serving ones) about “what’s best for” the “uneducated ones.”

    In #25, I posted a link about Annette Polly Williams, a black mother who had had it up to HERE with “educated” people telling her what was best for her kids. She worked as an elected official, and both Democrats and Republicans could see that she was making sense.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    Teaching is certainly a vocation – no argument there. Most teachers do so because they love to teach.

    Problem is, can a teacher do his or her job well as is traditionally expected of them if they have to have a second job just to make ends meet?

    Your question – whether I believe that money will ‘fix everything’ – seems like more of a retort than a rhetorical question…and it reminds me of a time that a social worker once told me that it made no sense that my wife and I – as Foster parents of medically-fragile children – made substantially more than Foster parents of ‘normal’ kids. Her point – like yours – was “you should be doing this for the love of the kids, not love of the money”. My reply to her was to challenge her to talk to other Foster parents who took care of medically-fragile kids and ask them if they’d do it for the ‘normal kid’ compensation.

    Why did I say that? Because if she wanted us to be able to do our job and to do it well – which not only entailed being Foster parents, to always be there for them, but also to provide the daily comprehensive medical and nursing care they needed – then the state would have to pay us enough to where only one of us would need to work outside the home.

    The point, Roger, is that it’s the same with the teachers. If you want them to do a job and to do it as well as is traditionally expected, then you pay them well enough that they don’t need to get second jobs. I have ZERO problem with merit pay or with firing underperforming teachers…but I have a big problem with the idea that paying teachers less somehow won’t hurt our kids’ education.

    And btw – how about comparing our teachers’ pay to those in nations where the kids perform a lot better? I don’t think you’ll like the results, because you’ll find that in several of those nations, the teachers are paid quite well – on the truly professional level – and because of this, the state is able to pick and choose from the very best of college graduates, and not just eagerly accept anyone with a no-name degree who decides to apply to be a teacher.

    You get what you pay for, Roger – and if you pay crappy wages, you WILL get crappy service. The same goes with teachers as in any other profession.

    P.S. – I’m back in Washington, at least for now.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “You get what you pay for, Roger.”

    Bullshit, Glenn, it only applies to people who are motivated by pay, bought and sold for. Human worth goes beyond pay, way beyond pay, it’s not commensurable with pay.

    I get a measly eight hundred a month. Two hundred more would make me comfortable, indeed, very happy. True, I don’t have a family to support, so I suppose I am an exception. Even so, I would be a dedicated teacher from dawn to dusk for a stupid grand a month,and I’d be happier than a lark.

    Don’t talk to me about dedication and pay. You don’t know jack shit about it, you never have and you never will.

  • zingzing

    that was just mean, roger.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    Sorry Roger, that was #23 that linked to the Annette Polly Williams interview (and also a link on a legal site about on the pros and cons of busing.

    There are so many (non-racist) reasons to oppose busing. One of the most compelling is the “Right Goal, Wrong Place” There is PRECIOUS. LITTLE. TIME. IN. THE. SCHOOL. DAY already to address the academic needs of students, including physical, music, arts, life skills…

    “Forcing people” to get along takes time (an infinite amount of time, I would add, as its a Sysiphean task, but it’s at the very least a non-zero amount.)

    Creating lasting harmony takes an enormous amount of very INTENTIONAL effort. It doesn’t “just happen” when folks from two hostile groups occupy the same building. People who are negotiating peace between Israeli and Palestinian teenagers, and those who did the same for Catholic and Protestant teens in Northern Ireland, know that is a VERY time-consuming process, though well worth it.

    Maybe in areas of the US where there is still racial tension, programs based on models that have been successful in similar situations could be adopted. I don’t know if that would work or not. It might work out better to have kids from all over the city get together at parks throughout the city on Saturday…

    In any case, busing has been a failure academically and after 30 years, there is still bigotry that can’t be “forced out,” so it’s been a social failure, too. That’s why most districts had stopped doing it by the end of the 90’s.

    It’s time to try something new, if we really care about academics AND racial harmony.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Harmony has got to start at the heart, isn’t so, Irene? Otherwise, it’s just a pretense.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Mean my ass, zing. If you and Glenn both insist on playing the liberal marionette, that’s exactly what you deserve.

    Michelangelo did’t paint the Pieta because of his commission; he painted it only because his commission afforded him to do so. And it was no different for Leonardo or any artist of greater or lesser renown, and you do know that for a fact. True teaching is no different. It’s an art.

    So the sooner you get off your high liberal horse and the frickin’ ideology that comes with it, the sooner you’ll rejoin the human race and deserve a seat at the table. Not until.

    But knowing your obstinacy, I’m not holding my breath.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    I get a measly eight hundred a month. Two hundred more would make me comfortable, indeed, very happy. True, I don’t have a family to support, so I suppose I am an exception. Even so, I would be a dedicated teacher from dawn to dusk for a stupid grand a month,and I’d be happier than a lark.

    I’ll ignore the profanity and the snide comments to point out one thing – maybe $1K/month is enough for you, but you are simply YOU. Like you said, you don’t have a family, and therefore you don’t have to spend more for a bigger place to live, more food to eat, and let’s not forget all the other expenses that go along with having kids.

    So, what, then – are you proposing that we only pay teachers more if they have families?

    Maybe you enjoy getting by on only $800/month, but that’s YOU…and just because you think something’s good enough for you doesn’t mean it’s good enough for anyone else. Really, Roger, do you think that 40% of teachers in Texas are taking second jobs simply because they are GREEDY???? Come on now – let’s apply a little common sense here!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    @36

    I’m not so much perturbed by fraud, Irene, or false credentials. It’s pretty much a given in our society. But I’ll certainly not pay any homage to anyone’s claim to expertise, whatever the subject. If they claim to be an expert, let them prove it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I really don’t want to talk, Glenn. Sorry, an not in the mood.

  • Zingzing

    Roger, you really want to tell Glenn, who works with disabled children, that he knows nothing of dedication? All while crying over $200 a month? Maybe I’m missing something here, but damn…

  • Jordan Richardson

    Roger just wants to piss on people and then tell them that he doesn’t want to discuss the details when they dare argue with the stench. Business as usual for the shitty little coward.

  • http://cinemasentries.com El Bicho

    The thought of Roger teaching children is a scary notion

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Zing and Jordan, the two stooges as usual, in search for the third.

    Anything else of note to contribute, Jordan, since you’ve suddenly reappeared?

    And btw, what has Glenn working with disabled children got anything to do with anything; no I didn’t know it. I responded to his speech and only his form of speech, nothing else.

    And Jordan, I really think you should crawl back to your cubbyhole if this here comment is the extent to your future contributions.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    #48

    Care to explain, El Bicho, or should I take the import of your comment as for the general effect?

  • Jordan Richardson

    The weird thing is that you don’t get to tell me when or where to “appear,” pal. Get over yourself.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Was I crying over two hundred buck, zing, or just said I’d be happy if I had it.

    So what was it now? Your lack of reading apprehension skills?

    I don’t think so. You willfully misrepresented what I said out of nothing but pure meanness, just because it suited your whatever purpose.

    Stay true to whatever is your true self, zing. I couldn’t possibly do any more damage to you than you’re doing it yourself.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Didn’t tell you jack shit, pal, where to go and where not to. Only made an observation as to your recent absence.

    Not to say, Jordan, that absence makes the heart grow fonder. We’re not there yet.

    In time, perhaps. Don’t you wish?

  • zingzing

    oh, roger… control yourself.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Did I say something out of hand?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And, btw, you haven’t responded to my outright accusation of willful misrepresentation on your part, as per #52. Are you is or are you ain’t?

    Going by your rather lame attempt at diversion, “control yourself,” I reckon you ain’t.

    True to form, zingo, always true true to form. That’s what I love ’bout you, always so predictable.

  • zingzing

    would “moaning” be a better word? “lusting?”

    maybe i chose to read it one way for effect, which, as i have it from a philosophical authority, is a move worthy of plato.

    ‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^›

    xoxo

    (you quit being a bitch and i will as well. your accusation against glenn, and your rather silly protestation of ignorance about his line of work, was out of line. if you’d like to pretend you’re above the insults of others, stop insulting them back–you couldn’t stop yourself from having a comeback on jordan, el b and i–and your “two stooges” comment was timed horribly.)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Glenn, you started this whole shebang and all your friends have came out of the woodwork, Canada, Africa, even the la-la land, to bail you out — just because I dared challenge a plank in the liberal dogma. That’s the only conclusion I can draw unless you’re all real buddies — chummy chummy, touchy touchy, feely feely, the sex bit and all that. But I don’t think so because of the physical distance, unless of course your correspond by email and exchange dirty pictures. So yes, it’s got to be that darn liberal ideology that binds you all so close. I really wish I could rediscover a bond so strong to unite me forever with my fellowmen, and women too. Got to tell me that secret, zing and Jordan, the two rascals you two.

    Anyway, Glenn, since you started this whole affair and have done your best to endear me to my natural-born enemies (someday perhaps friends), do you care to add a word to two?

    I’ll listen for an hour or two because I feel unusually jovial this very moment. Jordan and zing have put me in the very right mood, they’ve always had the knack.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I ain’t a bitch, zing, I don’t know how to be a bitch, zing. I’m neither a gay, zing, nor a woman. If there’s something you can teach me about being a bitch, teach me. I’m always willing to learn.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    And no, bitch, I can confidently say that now since you’re not all that uncomfortable with it, “moaning” is not was I was doing — unless of course you were trying to recreate one of your bedroom scenes with me on the receiving end.

    No, thank you. I’ve had my share of experiences that’d last me a lifetime. I’m over it now. Truth is where I get off. Truth and nothing but the truth is the only thing that makes mo cum.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    mo cum — that’s a good one! Like a mojo and moblow.

  • zingzing

    you know what i mean, roger. you can pretend you don’t, but you do. since i labeled myself with the same term, it’s hard to take such offense, unless you’re calling me a homosexual woman for some reason… in which case, i will teach you about being a homosexual woman, if that’s what you desire, you sexy beast.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Come on, bitch, talk to me.

    Now’s the time.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I’ve been there, zing. Know about the dimensions of human sexuality. But seriously, I’m trying to repair a relationship if at all possible.

    Do you really think I was attacking Glenn or the idea?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    BTW, never told you. You were always Johnny on the spot, just as I ever was. Talking ’bout the internet, of course. I’ve never told you that, but I always appreciated your ability to think on your feet, if you know what I mean, rather than having to retreat and regroup in order to compose an answer. It’s as sure a sign of an active and searching mind as any, and the only reason I haven’t complimented you on it before is, as you can can, we were (thus far) natural-born adversaries. Cindy was like that too, and I sure as hell miss her.

    What is the sense, I ask, in posting a comment if you have to wait a day or two for a response? I don’t know if you know anything about chess, my favorite game, but that would be like playing a speed, say, a two-minute game, while your opponent plays postal.

  • zingzing

    what do YOU think you were attacking?

    and what do you think it came off as when you said “Don’t talk to me about dedication and pay […] You don’t know jack shit about it, you never have and you never will”?

    that was some personal shit, and it was ignorant, if that’s the word for it. i actually don’t think you were ignorant. i think you said it for another reason.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    … as you can readily surmise …

    of course, of course, but I needn’t really correct my ellipticals, for the clarity of my thought and expression makes any such exercise redundant.

    Ha ha!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, zing, Glenn’s connecting the idea of teaching, or being an artist, with pay, did indeed strike me as rather ignorant. Of course I did not know about Glenn’s personal circumstances, about having foster kids or any of that. But even if I have been aware of those circumstances, his statement still would have struck me as odd and untrue.

    Think of Virginia Woolf. Her only desire was to have a room of her own.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    See, zing, perhaps here lies the difference between you and I. You do know I get along very well with Cindy, not because I’ve met her in person (though we did in fact talk on the phone), but because I appreciate her ideas, her energy, her spunk, whether or not she’s wrong. But this is where the similarity ends. If I think she’s wrong, I’ll be the first to tell her, and you know the risks this entails, Cindy being Cindy, of course. In all honestly, I don’t think I would be Cindy’s friend if I wouldn’t tell her whenever I think she’s wrong or has misjudged a situation or two. That’s what true friendship means to me, speaking the truth, whatever the consequences.

    Well, I’m not accusing anyone of anything now, let’s make this clear, but it surely would be refreshing to see some of you guys being at odds at times, of only for the hell of it, if only for show.

    Please surprise me!

  • zingzing

    “Think of Virginia Woolf. Her only desire was to have a room of her own.”

    no it wasn’t. that’s the title, yes… but her desires went far beyond that. she wanted free access to education for women, something you more or less maybe somewhat* belittled earlier on this thread. she wanted what amounted to revolutionary change, not four walls and a door.

    “it surely would be refreshing to see some of you guys being at odds at times”

    i’m sure we have been, particularly el b and me. jordan and i get along relatively peacefully, it seems. maybe i’m a canadian at heart, i dunno.

    *i realize you weren’t belittling education, or at least i realize you probably shouldn’t, but you did plop in line with the anti-intellectuals on it up there. higher education is belittled by some of the conservatives in this country, and, even if it does lead someone towards the left, i don’t think that should deter anyone, right or left, from seeking an education. it may be that universities are more leftist than the rest of the country, but if that’s what education leads you to, so what? education does not equal intelligence, that’s for sure, but i’d hope you aren’t against it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Anyway, zing, gonna go back to watching my movies on Hulu Plus. If you haven’t tried it yet, you don’t know what you’re missing. You can try a free subscription for a week, what have you got to lose?

    Hope to continue this conversation tomorrow, on an even keel.

  • zingzing

    dude. hulu is not the place to go, plus you have to pay for it. don’t want to give anything away, but there’s this one channel (numeral no space channel dot ch) that lets you watch whatever you want. putlocker is my favorite provider, but there are more. anything. it’s almost perfect.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Did you really think I was against education? Seriously?

    And I don’t think we should bicker about true desires of Virginia, bless her heart, whether met or unmet. But a “room of her own” was definitely only of them; and I can surely identify with this as an author and a writer. To many people, it’s all they ever had. And frankly, that’s all I need, with a view or without.

    But anyway, I don’t want to end this session in disagreement. Talk to you tomorrow.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I don’t mind paying $7.95 a month. Fair pay for fair service, never had a problem with that.

    Good night, my man.

  • zingzing

    “Did you really think I was against education? Seriously?”

    i made it clear i didn’t think so.

    “And I don’t think we should bicker about true desires of Virginia, bless her heart, whether met or unmet.”

    they were met.

    “I don’t mind paying $7.95 a month”

    foooooooool.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    The American in me, surprised?

    Can’t help it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Help me think of drama, zing, modern-day political drama. It’s got to be political not only because that’s what I care about but also, because it affects all of us. Not the Tennessee Williams or Eugene O’Neil kind, but political drama after the fashion of Aeschylus or Shakespeare. Is our age capable of this kind of pathos, the kind of political speech that’s been crafted by Thucydides. Does Pinter come close? Can we do better?

    If you point the way, zing, I’ll be forever grateful, because a play is what I must write, but it has to be a political play. And I promise. I’ll be forever out of your (pubic?) hair.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Anyways, I’m off for tonight. Come back tomorrow, you hear?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    Well, zing, Glenn’s connecting the idea of teaching, or being an artist, with pay, did indeed strike me as rather ignorant. Of course I did not know about Glenn’s personal circumstances, about having foster kids or any of that. But even if I have been aware of those circumstances, his statement still would have struck me as odd and untrue.

    1 – I never mentioned artists at all! WHERE did that come from? Lay off the sauce, willya?

    2 – You really must think teachers are stupid. The hardest positions to fill in school anymore are those of math and science teachers. Why? Because they can take a position as a teacher, or they can take a position in the private sector (or other government sectors) making three and four times as much. Hmmm, let me see here – $2K/month to be a teacher, or $8K/month to be a computer programmer…gee, what to do, what to do?

    Do you REALLY think someone with children would choose a career where they would have to struggle to make ends meet when they could make so much more elsewhere? Do you really?

    What are you smoking, Roger? I don’t know where you got your idea that teachers will teach even if they’re paid peanuts or less, but teachers are NOT BENEDICTINE MONKS. Teachers are NOT BUDDHIST MONKS. Teachers do NOT LIVE BY OATHS OF POVERTY.

    Many, many people would love to be teachers…as would I. The time I loved most in my Naval career was that of teaching the troops, and that’s why there’s a “Troops to Teachers” program for retired farts like me can go teach if we’ve a degree. And it’s a popular program – why? Because if you talk to retired military people, generally speaking the thing we miss most about military service is guiding all the younger people (and YES, we often do so in classroom settings). In other words, WE MISS TEACHING. It’s the very same thing. You’ll probably disagree with a profanity-laced rant…but nearly every retired military guy will tell you the same thing.

    I don’t know where you got your idea that teachers are somehow preprogrammed to teach regardless of how little they get paid…but they’re not. They’re NOT MONKS. Like most of the rest of society, the great majority really want to do a good job…but they want to get paid well for the service they provide!

    And you have YET to provide a reply showing why it is that you think that FORTY PERCENT of the teachers in Texas feel the need to moonlight since YOU think that if they’re really teachers, they’ll teach no matter how little they’re paid!

    Again, Roger, lay off the sauce, and stop spewing hatred and insults at those who didn’t insult you. It only makes you look bad.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Roger –

    I think it’s time for me to stop arguing with you about teachers and economy and so on and so forth. Let’s get to the real issue.

    Right now you’re very bitter and angry and you’re lashing out. It shows in your writing. Don’t tell me it doesn’t – it’s painfully obvious (you’ve let on more than you think over the years on BC) and if I were a betting man I’d lay odds it’s because of the change from the life you once had out west to the life you have now. Yes, it sucks. You’ve known a much better lifestyle and you’re trying your level best to find happiness with much less and in a significantly different class of people, most of whom don’t have anything close to your level of education and knowledge. And you’re understandably angry about the unfairness of it all.

    Again, it’s understandable…and because of that it’s incumbent upon me to not judge you for your anger.

    Anyway, it just occurred to me that maybe it’s a good thing if you let it out here in the digital world, as long as you don’t take your bitterness and anger out on people in the physical world. That, and IIRC you’re degreed, and because of that you can certainly teach. Go teach overseas in a third-world nation, and perhaps you’ll find the same kind of happiness that I found – not so much in the way of a significant other (though that’s always a good possibility), but in the daily lives of the people, interacting with them, helping them, and seeing the gratitude in their eyes.

    Another real possibility is the Peace Corps. A nurse that works with us here told us about her daughter who’s off to Botswana…and her daughter told her how one of her fellow Peace Corps volunteers was 83 years old. So it’s not too late – you can still do it, Roger.

    There’s happiness to be found in this world, Roger – and America is not the happiest place. Do something completely different – go where people will be truly grateful for you…and soon you’ll find that you’re grateful for them, too.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Stop being on the defensive, Glenn, just because I or anyone finds a hole in your argument. Yes, to me teaching is a vocation, and I’m being in earnest. Nobody’s saying teachers should be starving, but there is also something which is called the labor of love (and that’s the connection between true teachers and artists), and your argument “you get what you pay for” fails to take that into consideration; that was the full extent of my point, nothing else.

    And no, I do not need your advice, nor have I asked for it, as regards my personal life. So don’t presume that you know me well enough to be giving it, especially when it comes unsolicited.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    You still don’t grok that while teachers love to teach, they love to provide for their own children even more…and it is a critical error on your part to think that they would put their vocation above the well-being of their own families.

    And when it comes to unsolicited advice, how many times have you passed judgment on me, or given unsolicited advice? MANY times. So you don’t have a whole lot of room to talk. I’ve always been of the opinion that buddies tell a man what wants to hear, but friends tell a man what he needs to hear. THAT, Roger, is why I sincerely say ‘thank you’ to someone who sincerely tries to give helpful advice…

    …because helpful advice is still helpful advice, regardless of how much you may despise the one who gives it. That’s a good tool to keep in your psychological toolbox, Roger, if you’ve the courage to use it.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Whatever, Glenn. I’m quickly approaching the point Irene has already reached, and that is not to pay you any heed. And I’d never consider you my friend, whether here or in real life, so save your sermons for somebody else.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    That’s up to you. You can lead a horse to water….