Oakland Teachers Strike In 5th Day Over Higher Wages, Climate Justice, Homeless Housing, Reparations

 By Mish Shedlock of MishTalk

In another giant leap forward for progressive madness, Oakland Teachers Are on Strike for Social Justice.

The strike is now in the fifth day, and it it isn't about pay. The district offered teachers a record 22 percent raise and a $5,000 bonus, both of which are unwarranted for performance reasons.

 List of Demands

  • Repurpose vacant school buildings for homeless housing

  • Landscape school yards with drought-resistant trees

  • Reparations for black students to remedy alleged historic injustices

  • Dedicate the first week of school each year to create a “positive school culture”

Bargaining for the Common Good

The National Education Association has those goals on its website Bargaining for the Common Good

With Bargaining for the Common Good, union members partner with the community around a long-term vision for the structural changes they want to see in their communities. Together, they use collective bargaining and advocacy as a critical moment in a broader campaign to win that change.

When we expand the continuum of bargaining, we build power, and go on the offense in order to fight for social and racial justice, for our kids, for our schools, for our communities, and for the future. 

It's All on the Table

"It's all on the table," says the NEA. Indeed, and Oakland is taking that cue.

Kill Collective Bargaining by Public Unions

I have commented on this many times before, but hopefully it sinks in now. Public unions are holding students hostage over goals that have nothing to do with their mission. Even FDR recognized this would happen.

Public Unions Have No Business Existing: Even FDR Admitted That

Please consider a few key snips from FDR's Letter on the Resolution of Federation of Federal Employees Against Strikes in Federal Service, August 16, 1937, emphasis mine.

All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management. The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations. The employer is the whole people, who speak by means of laws enacted by their representatives in Congress. Accordingly, administrative officials and employees alike are governed and guided, and in many instances restricted, by laws which establish policies, procedures, or rules in personnel matters.

Particularly, I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the functions of any organization of Government employees. Upon employees in the Federal service rests the obligation to serve the whole people, whose interests and welfare require orderliness and continuity in the conduct of Government activities. This obligation is paramount. Since their own services have to do with the functioning of the Government, a strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government until their demands are satisfied. Such action, looking toward the paralysis of Government by those who have sworn to support it, is unthinkable and intolerable. It is, therefore, with a feeling of gratification that I have noted in the constitution of the National Federation of Federal Employees the provision that "under no circumstances shall this Federation engage in or support strikes against the United States Government."

"For the Kids"

Teacher's unions demand money "for the kids". The school boards are padded with teachers demanding more money "for the kids". None of this is for the kids, and now it's not even about wages but things totally unrelated to teaching.

Collective bargaining cannot possibly exist in such circumstances. Unions can and have shut down schools.

The unions do not give a damn about the kids. Notice I said "unions" do not give a damn. Many, if not most, teachers do care for the kids, but the union does not. 

The unions can, and do, protect teachers guilty of abusing kids. It is nearly impossible to get rid of a bad tenured teacher or a bad cop.

Abolish Public Unions Entirely

Union leaders have a mandated goal of protecting bad cops, bad teachers, and corrupt politicians. Unions blackmail politicians and threaten the public they are supposed to serve.

Union leaders will do anything to stay in power, the kids and the public be damned. The only way to deal with the situation is to "effectively" abolish public unions entirely.

We need to take away 100% of their power as opposed to ending their right of association.

Recommended Steps

  1. National right-to-work laws

  2. Abolishment of all prevailing wage laws

  3. Ending public unions ability to strike

  4. Ending collective bargaining by public unions

Consider Illinois' prevailing wage laws: Prevailing wages are union wages. Municipalities and businesses have to pay prevailing wages. If they do not hire union workers, they get picketed.

Why bother hiring non-union workers if you have to pay union wages in the first place? As a direct result, municipalities and businesses must overpay for services in Illinois. 

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