what use is a democratic party that hates unions?
The Chicago Teachers Union is threatening a strike for the first time in 25 years, against the so-called education reform agenda of Democratic Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, whose plan is remarkably similar to what New Jersey's Governor Christie has been brutally advocating in New Jersey.
According to a Sept. 7 Reuters report, Emanuel wants to close schools, expand non-union charter schools, and let corporations and philanthropies run some schools. All this, of course, requires breaking the union, which Christie has been working to do in New Jersey since he became governor.
Unless there's a settlement, 30,000 teachers and staff represented by the CTU will walk out at 12:01 AM on Sept. 10.
If you think Emanuel is a fluke in the Democratic Party on this matter, consider this: According to labornotes.org, a film was screened at the Democratic National Convention, entitled "Won't Back Down," which portrays a mother and a teacher battling an evil teachers union to convert their struggling public school into a charter school through something called a "parent trigger" law. It shows "bad teachers" locking students in closets, making personal phone calls during class, forbidding bathroom breaks and refusing to help students after school, because of fictitious union rules. The union, of course, is cast as the evil protector of these teachers.
The film, which drew a standing ovation when it was also shown at the Republican Convention in Tampa, was made by something called Democrats for Education Reform. DFER, reports labornotes, is a political action committee made up of
hedge fund managers seeking investment opportunities in education, and therefore, they support the entire privatization agenda.
One of the members of DFER's advisory board is Newark Mayor Cory Booker, the same Booker who played an instrumental role in killing a Glass-Steagall amendment to the Democratic Party platform at the platform committee's meeting in Detroit on Aug. 10.
Booker is also a close buddy of Chris Christie. Another Democrat on this bandwagon is Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who actively supported a lawsuit seeking to tie L.A. teacher evaluations to student test scores, another way of making children stupid.