Most teachers not only take government money, they rely solely on government money for their livelihoods. And there are a good portion of teachers who look out for “short-term” gains on a quarter by quarter basis rather than looking out for the long-term interests of their schools and their students. Really. Think back to your time at school and tell me that everyone was committed to the long-term health of the school and of your education. That was certainly not even true at the Catholic and private schools I attended.
So, here we are in a world where the government is setting pay for firms that receive government bailout money on the conditions laid out above. Despite the ridiculousness of this kind of a world, if we are going to do it, why do we not apply this standard uniformly? Why not dock teachers when their students do not learn (don’t tell me it is beyond the control of teachers, much of the financial crisis was beyond the control of the executives for the same reasons)? Why not dock the pay of politicians that do not act in the broad social interest? What is different?
So, I say bravo to those of you who want to nail the Wall Streeters to the wall … so long as you also nail yourselves too when you do the same things with “our money.” And public school teachers have been taking our money for far longer and in far larger amounts than any of the clowns involved in the financial crisis.