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Vergara Ruling Overturned by State Appeals Court….

A California appeals court, reversing a trial court’s ruling in the landmark Vergara case, has found that California’s job-protection laws for teachers do not in fact violate the state constitution’s equal protection guarantee.

 

The appeals court ruled April 14 that the plaintiffs in the Vergara case had failed to prove sufficiently that the state’s teacher-employment laws, including tenure and termination provisions, “inevitably cause a certain group of students to receive an education inferior to the education received by other students.”

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Exactly what those of us who read the transcripts all said… We called it a kangeroo court because it decided it decision based on shots called down to it, and not on the evidence put before the court.  There was no way the evidence pointed to that decision.

 

This is good news.   In the national test-case for unions, Unions have been declared legal and can stand stronger now……

A similar case to Vergara was  just filed in Minnesotaand this decision may put a knife in it early up there.

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It is just another name.  In today’s reality it speaks of those 5 people who rule the world through their influence. That influence comes strictly tied to shares of ownership…. Those 5 own directly or indirectly enough of the global economy to hold everyone in thrall.

Which when they pull in the direction of our own interests, is ok. When they don’t, we have to modify their power or lose our power..

After the past recession if truth will ever become fact, you will one day learn how we needed them to jump start our post recessional economy. No one had seed money but them. We are now suffering the residuals of that effective policy. Like chemo-therapy, what once was needed for all of us, is now not.

Essentially we continue to let them benefit from the low tax rates then in effect… We used our low tax rates to compensate for other nations use of lowly paid labor in order to help us match their end-costs and stay competitive….

With the global economic implosion the top echelon lost a large percentage and in order to make them willing to throw their leftover good money into saving it, we the people had to make sure they got something back… While profits were low, our plan worked… Now that profits are high, it is working still but to our detriment.

So it is time to change.

Historically that happens with revolutions. France, Colonial America, Ireland, as well as hundreds of documented revolts in ancient Rome line historical accounts of record, where desperate men facing desperate measures had nothing to lose in completely dismantling their society….

And whether that attempt is effective or not, surprisingly…comes down to simply a contest of strength of wills between the two contesting parties. Ultimately that means it depends on your will. Do you yourself have the will for fight for your rights and if necessary risk everything you own to remain a democratic nation?   History implies we don’t; written accounts show us democracy has not been sustainable over the long term. 

Today if every American wanted some type of revolution, there would no way of putting it down. The only way a corrupt government can continue over the wishes of its governed, is to make them prefer the evils they have over what may potentially come upon them if they should ever decide to rise up…..

So as one example the force used against Occupy crowds was there to make others wary of joining in; not so much to wreak havoc on those few demonstrators who were as demonstrators, extremely almost to a fault, well behaved…..

The signal given was “yes, you can have free speech” as long as it is first approved by us…. Those few who picked their battles to demonstrate against Liberals and Socialists do not have cops dressed in intimidation descend upon their displays or bombard their gathering with helicopter backwash… Instead they have tacit approval and are left alone….

Now, none of us alive today felt affinity to those saying… “Rah, rah, rah, Support the Kochs” even though they had corporate America’s and big donor’s support solidly behind them. None of us cared to join. On the contrary in 2011, I think just about everyone felt some affinity towards the Occupy movement in one form or another so the impetus to join their ranks was very high. Many of today’s current politicians and community spokespeople were there at Occupy voting in pure democracy along with everyone else..

As an anti-authoritarian protest Tienanmen Square in China was relatively harmless in what it “did”, but was extremely damaging to the Communist Chinese government for what it “represented”, freedom of expression. Having happy people in a square is not a problem. A problem is that all other Chinese will next do the same and together coalesce and form a counter-government that almost everyone would prefer over the current existing one…

Therefore the brutality at Tienanmen Square was not necessary to clean a square of very harmless happy people… It was necessary to scare all others from doing the same… “Look what happens to you if you challenge your government”…

Now there was a huge risk in undertaking that controversial Chinese governmental policy. It could have flipped Just as easily as having a well cast die turn on its side; in turn it could have created the opposite effect causing a reaction like:… “Oh, no. They are killing us off, All of us need to join and overthrow every Communist Government leader now”… If every village simultaneously lynched, killed, or ran off their communist party, there would be nothing the Communists could do… They are hugely outnumbered.

But the Chinese leader read his population right. The massive numbers of the working class kowtowed and went back into their dutiful trained mode of keeping their head down to keep from having it cut off. On the other hand, the Russian junta two years later got it wrong… Just like the British got it wrong in America prior to 1776. Just like the French got it wrong in Vietnam in 1956. Just like the Russians and Americans both got it wrong in Afghanistan….

When large numbers of people choose to fight… it becomes very hard to regain control… One can only ultimately regain control as is ISIS today, by force and horror, and that force has to be completely overwhelming and destructively horrific enough to wipe out all bad blood, leaving only good available after one takes control… Very messy.

Our forefathers were much closer to violent history. Their ancestors unlike ours were there simply because whenever they attacked, or were attacked, they won and overcame adversity. Whoever lost got rounded up and killed off and their genes were long gone.

The founding fathers scoured history for a way to stop that trend from continuing in this brand new land. Only those of us most astute in historical archives are aware of their knowledge of interstate religious “wars” that took place here, on these shores, primarily between catholics and protestants, or Puritans and the established church… They were “wars” in quotation marks because they really only amounted to raids since so few people were here at the time.. But… they did their damage in spilled blood, but now todays children and most of the general population know nothing of it and think America was always one big happy family.

That big happy family came about solely because of the system established by the founding fathers. A system that was impartial almost to a fault, and left judgments strictly in the hands of society’s members whoever happened to be in power at that moment time…. Each of those people had to constantly receive the affirmation from those governed or lose their position to someone deemed more preferable by a majority of their constituents…..

And it’s worked so far… Just like Democracy in Rome also worked for about 250 years… Today all Americans are 12 years away from that mark in Roman history when at 250 years, Romans gave up their chartered right to rule themselves and instead settled for accepting whomever grabbed the mantel of tyrant or person holding absolute power.

Indeed. Our parallel is not only enumerative, but reflects parallels in our societies as well. We have a media that is controlled. We have the ability to monitor every citizen; to control them by intimidation over “what might happen” based on our knowledge of their peccadilloes. We are treating fellow human beings as things to be exterminated instead of human being fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters, and grandparents who are for the most part, just like us. We are at the point where as serfs we have only two options: accept what our master gives, or starve. There is no opportunity to change or step up. Suck it or else.

Likewise right now we have education slowly closing its ranks to the poor, and giving top income earners a worthy jump in life over those whose lot was to be born in the 99%…. We have corporations poisoning our food, and killing the Monarch butterfly with our representative Congress accepting its private donations and voting willingly to kill both us and many other species, even outlawing counter-studies or discussion to prevent anything bad from surfacing which could cause masses of people to change their minds.. We have energy now monopolized into the hands of very few, and so to live, must accept their price or perish.

Like the Romans we now have continuous war because both parties in Washington now get rich off off it.

So yes. From a historical point, we may very well see democracy disappear in our lifetimes and for most of us if it did, would bode little change. We’d still work, get drunk, entertain ourselves, and go to bed. Romans continued as a dominant society 400 more years after giving up their rights to tyrants. But for others, doing this will mean extermination. It will mean life’s disruption. It will mean a return to slavery… Simply because there is no longer any possible way to override the will of whatever directive each tyrant decrees…

Like every prior civilization, eventually our governmental society will soon become corrupt; since when one is in favor by the rulers one is set for life, the best way to curry favor quickly is to bestow gifts: gifts paid for by you and me. Currently the only thing keeping Democracy in its place now, is the lucky fact that no one is seriously challenging it. But give us one major disruption and someone to effectively blame it on democracy’s inadequacies.. and that tyrant suddenly looks very appealing. That so far is what we have not had, but odds say we will face soon if we do not decide once and for all right now, who we really want controlling our lives: representatives of ourselves or a monarch….

The prime question we currently face right now is how to cut the string running from the handlers to the puppets… The handlers have no real effective power. Do you even know who the top 5 hedge fund holders are? But having Carper cast a certain vote. Have Coons cast a certain vote. Have Carney vote a certain way and with 60 votes in the Senate and 218 in the House, certain policies do quietly get set…. Policies that hurt 99% of Americans, always still squeak by with only a few votes which is all they need.

The reason we are at this point is because when that argument was made, that people with money should have more clout in government over ordinary people who don’t have money… it won. And it stood up in court… Citizens United opened the door for money to takeover our government and leave 99% of our people in its dust. The original idea behind Democracy was that every eligible man had one vote. The new forthcoming idea is that if you have a hundred million dollars, you should have 100 million more times of voting influence over someone worth one dollar….

In effect, the worth of any person through this decision now became more important than the individuality of that same person…

We come from pioneer stock. It wasn’t always that way. Our ancestors knew that worth was based on luck but survivability was based on effort and that every person had an equal share in making Democracy work, and every person should therefore have an equal representation….

What Citizen’s United did was turn this original idea on its head. The idea that money spent was a form of free speech immediately gave power to those with all the money… They now had all the free speech… It was a bad idea and one that disenfranchised 315 million Americans from their own government.

Now. Even if a politician-elect is a great people’s candidate, one who was very humanly oriented in their original candidacy, after one term they too are forced into this reality of kowtowing to those who can break them. This explains the fall of Chris Coons and John Carney. As soon as the reality hits of being in Washington, it becomes explained very quickly to them by their brethren that to stay in power one must acquiesce to power. There are great forces against which if you don’t comply, can flood your constituency with a lot of trouble against which anyone would prefer not to deal.

If you are in a solid party-controlled seat, they make someone with resources primary you. If you are in a close two-party election seat, someone with resources will challenge you.. the money will be forthcoming to them… Amazing amounts of money you can only dream of seeing… (O’Donnell- Coons)…

If you were in power… why on earth would you even listen to a single person like me? Seriously. I can do nothing more than give you one vote. But Acme Corporation, rich off of Wily Coyote’s sales, can buy challengers against you for pennies on the dollar. If you vote no, when its PAC says yes… you have to question which really is the best for your citizens long-termed interests? For if you vote no as you wish, and lose the next election round, someone much worse will be thrust in your place making all those same decisions. It becomes apparent rather quickly that if you wish to keep your values for which you were elected, you need to do the dance of listening to constituents and obfuscating from them all your votes for the power brokers as best you possibly can. Ironically under Citizen’s United, this becomes indeed the preferable course of action… The last thing we need is someone replacing Carney with Copeland in the next election… Then the little people have lost all clout…

So what needs to happen is that all the ground rules quickly change in campaign finance so the power becomes more balanced between those with money and those with numbers who have little money. And that is easily done. We already did it with McCain-Feingold. That is until it was deemed unconstitutional following the Citizens United decision. The court said any containment of influence by wealthy individuals or PAC’s was a violation of free speech… What happened next was that the new influence of unlimited money, in turn violated our rights to free speech by isolating us from all ongoing dialogue, since their ad-buys block my voice out…. I now lack the free speech once afforded me because of the effects of Citizen’s United… Which means if I can no longer speak out for any of your interests, then you too have lost your right to free speech ultimately because you do not have over $100 million dollars to spend simply to get access to listeners.

Unless Citizens United is quickly overturned, our government becomes a shill for those 5 people by default.  What it has done is create an environment very ripe for all the tools we used originally to create a police society protecting us from “terrorism”, to now be used upon ourselves to shift into a new society, one complacent to the loss of our right to determine our own future…..

That scenario is NOT democracy in action….

Every once in a while a dumb Conservative will fall off the wagon and start blabbering about how bad unions are… Since Conservatives are today’s equivalent  of yesteryear’s Communists, and since the more they talk (as did those communists), the more the real truth emerges about their horrid ideal for America, it is my sincere wish that they keep it up.

However, just to make sure that not all conversation is one way, I wanted to give everyone a pat on the back who is Union, and thank them, by reminding them just of the powerful role they play…  When facts are on the table, the only way one can really be against unions in general, is if one shoots themselves up with heroin and looses all contact with reality … Today, you really got to be “on something” if you are anti-union…. For all realistic facts point in the opposite direction…

First, let us dispel the mentality that unions force people to be in them…. Once past that rhetorical device, one realizes there are no “forced unions” and therefore there can be no “worker’s choice” involving union ownership..  Or put in layman’s terms,  both forming, and disbanding a union operation, ARE the worker’s choice… As everyone knows,  (my goodness, I hope everyone at least knows)  it takes a majority of workers to form a union. Likewise as everyone knows, it takes a majority of workers to opt out of a union, should they find that union membership really doesn’t “do it” for them.

Workers have plenty of choices.  They can choose to make their shop a union. They can choose to undo their shop as  a union.  They can individually choose to work there under existing  union shop arrangements.  They can individually choose not to work there under existing union shop arrangements.

The argument that workers cannot choose is bogus.  It is based solely on the principle that a union has to cater to the whim of every prospective employee.  In today’s corporate world, would we expect Bank of America to have to cater to the whim of every single employee?  I wish.. huh?   So the entire argument behind “right to work” laws are about the  employer’s rights and the hirer’s rights… as in their right to be able to hire someone willing to work on the cheap, instead of what was called for in the contract he signed with the union….

Worker’s rights have never changed… if they don’t like it, they have always had the right to quit.  They are not being forced to do anything.  They have worker’s choice… The union laws don’t make unions compulsory; they merely prevent free-riding, whereby workers could get the benefits of a union contract without paying for it. ..  Would a corporation like Bank of America  keep free riders on their payroll who were getting paid and doing nothing?  I wish, huh?..

Most employers do prefer the consistency of having contracts over that of having strikes which are very expensive and are not penciled into the long term plan. Even employers are supportive of having closed shops, because only that provides the consistency they need and makes planning more accurate.

However, in attempting to close down unions in America, conservatives have stirred the ire of the American people…. “No matter their warts, unions ultimately reflect their members: typical Canadians just trying to earn a decent income, support their families, and (hopefully) retire with some security, in an economy which rewards the rich and powerful more than ever before..”

Unions represent America. After all, none of us really identify with the CEO making $1,000,000 an hour.  If he doubles his salary, it does nothing for us…  if he doubles his salary and we are the ones paying for it in lower wages, that does affect us.  Unions are the only defense America people have.

Wage gains have been small, strikes are historically rare, and even much-maligned public sector contracts have been rolled back substantially. In such a lopsided context, it’s simply impossible to convince most voters that unions are really Public Enemy Number One..

All those of us making less than $1,000,000 annually, innately understand that if the only institutional voice speaking for working class priorities is silenced, then the whole social contract will become even more tattered in the years ahead. Unions, to their credit, effectively emphasized their broader social impacts in their responses to ridiculous conservative fabrications of reality.

Every attempt to destroy unions, whether in the public or private sector, is now viewed a simply the rich, trying to take what does not belong to them, to make themselves even richer at our expense….  America can see.  It sees conservatives as mean spirited harbingers of middle class poverty.  We are on it’s doorstep now.

America can see.  it can see our fathers hard negotiated benefits they thought would one day help their children, get pulled back, and back, and back.  Health benefits, pensions, insurance,  all those things their fathers chose to take in lieu of more salary, are now clutched back into the hands of those who at one point in our father’s past, had to grudgingly fork them over… .

America can see.  Conservatives are mean spirited, hateful, selfish, brutal, and self-serving.  America can see.

Their anti Union views have pissed off moderate conservatives, who do see the benefits of being able to stand up to ones boss when he is wrong.  They blatantly offend labor unions and their families, by equating their representation with that of organized crime when the actual real criminal is the CEO running the economy into the ground. …

I hope Conservatives speak up all the louder.  For every time they open their mouth, America again realizes that Conservatives do not speak for the 99% of us… They may sometimes fool us with a quick turn of phrase.  But we’ve lived with them long enough, to know, that what they propose, and who they are, and what damage they will do to both the middle class and America… was not accurately reflected upon their original application to us for employment.

It’s past time  to fire Conservatives, for lying on their application…

This will get lost in 9/11 memories and Syrian controversy.. It is a shame. For in all that madness created by the Obama drones (forever now imprinted by the John Stewart’s Daily Show), this is one true gem of news…

Allowing non union workers to win benefits achieved by the union members in collective bargaining agreements, violates Indiana’s law which requires, no, mandates that compensation must be made for services rendered.

Because the non union employees were getting compensated without paying union dues to the union that won that benefit for them, that clause of the Indiana State Constitution was being violated.

Indiana is a Republican state. This was a Republican court. They even used a basic tenant of Republican philosophy, eliminate Welfare, to come to this decision.

In their eyes, there is no difference within a “right to work” state, between non union workers sitting back on their asses, drinking beer and watching TV on someone else’s effort…. and Welfare Queens, sitting back on their asses, drinking beer and watching TV on someone else’s effort.

Telling words ended their judgment….. “There is no court more loathe to declare an Indiana statute unconstitutional than this one”

“The court has no choice but find the Right To Work Laws violate the Indiana Constitution…”

ALEC’s Right To Work law has suffered defeat… Time to step up pressure in ALL states.

I hope you see this… I wanted to document a list of the damage the Pam Scott regime had done to New Castle County, such as destroying historical buildings, brushing aside traffic studies, mitigating necessary environmental policies, .. In general, everything they did that deteriorates the quality of life for people in New Castle County for years to come..

Then I realized it really should  come from you… You have the archives in Delaware Way; you know how your archives are organized, and you with a quick email sent “To All” could rapidly receive a plethora of details your contacts had lived through and fought against…

I know it will be a labor of love, and may take some time… But I think the world should know how this erosion of resident’s rights for the accumulation of money for a few, was done.  I figure it would probably take one day to go thought your archives, cutting and pasting links to all the articles on one page…

Often local struggles are rarely documented.  However they touch our lives far more than state or national issues.  It would be nice to have the truth out first for once…  all organized in one volume.

I really feel it should come from you. 🙂

All Courtesy of NAEP Click on each to enlarge.
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The NAEP is the nation’s Educational Report card. It is the definitive standard which will determine whether RTTT or Common Core is working. Against this all things are measured. The long term trend assessment is given every four years. This data is for 2012 and can be compared to 2008. The Main NAEP Assessment (compare the two assessments here) is given every two years. It will be taken this year in 2014. If 2014’s scores are consistent or go down, the curriculum like some have said here, is the problem.

But one can see that those who support Charter Schools (Jea Street, are you listening?) who claim education is terrible, just terrible, these days. have nothing to stand on. Education has increased in segments little by little since it was begun in 1973. (The starting point for Hispanics as a separate classification was 1975). The old curriculums with all their problems did their job. What is interesting is how growth stopped at 2008. The 2012’s reports showed mostly flat scores from the previous session, although they did not go down. The biggest outside change affecting lots of students was the advent of charter schools, and implementation of standardized testing. As in Delaware, Charter schools tend to drop test scores underneath what public schools would have been able to attain. This negative influence (from Charters) and the positive gains in public education may have canceled each other out giving us the flat results we see here.

These results are too soon to apply to Common Core, because Common Core was piloted in 2012-2013 and begins this year in full effect.

But what these charts do convincingly show, is that the institute of public education has functioned very well over the past forty years. It remains to be seen, if the sledgehammer now being applied in the name of corporate reform, or translated into “give me all your money,” will do more damage than the good we’ve gotten used to.

A pretty good pastor told me this story.  His first born son came home, obviously had been crying. So he asked him if there was something he wanted to tell him and was told his son hated school.  With this son it was a shock. A complete reversal because that was all this son talked about up to this point: how wonderful his days were at school.  With a little probing the pastor found that other boys had discovered this pastor’s son, didn’t hit back and were having a field day at his expense.  So, the pastor had a little heart-to-heart talk.  “You know,” the pastor said.  “you have the right by God to defend yourself.  If someone hurts you, you are allowed to hurt them back, so they see what if feels like and stop hurting you.”  The relief spread over his son’s upturned face.  “Really?  it’s ok?”  “Why yes.” the pastor said.  “I used to be one of the best fighters in my school when I was growing up.”

The next day his son came home all smiles.  “Everything go ok?”  His son’s smile said it all..

That normally would be the end of the story.  Life lesson taught.  Well, this story has a twist and keeps going.  A couple of weeks later, the pastor got an urgent letter from his teacher. ” I must see you personally as soon as possible.”  He hurried down and the teacher begins… “I don’t know what is wrong with your son.  He used to be so nice and kind and everybody loved him.  Now no one will sit next to him.  They are adamant.  I’ve had to put him in a chair in the corner just to get class back on track.  They say he’s hitting them, but I really find that very hard to believe.”

The pastor went back home, found his son, and together, they had …. another little heart-to-heart discussion…  🙂

Point is: sometimes though fighting back is not deemed civilized or the mature method to handle problems, it is necessary. ( Just don’t enjoy the rush so much you forget when to stop.)

The erosion of the middle class has gone on long enough. Let me rephrase that: the erosion of all classes except those at the top 1%, has gone on long enough.  What can we do about it?

it is time for class war.  i don’t like it anymore than that little boy who was taught that hitting was wrong, liked hitting back at first, but it is necessary. The longer we wait; the weaker we become.

How do we win?  We win by deflating the value they place on their pile of money.  We throw the economy so investors everywhere are forced to panic.  The easiest way to do that, is to simply not work.  We can a) under perform and drive up productivity costs; b) sabotage our bosses and drive up supply costs; or c) strike and win, and drive up labor costs.

Of the three, the latter is the cleanest.  Staging a mutiny until conditions change, sends the clearest signal that the rules on the playing field must change.  The price of labor is going up.  If you refuse, we shut your plant down.

It has been awhile since we have had strikes.  If they’ve happened at all, they get swept under the mat of the next news story to come up on the wire.  Strikes are kind of ugly.  They hurt a lot of people just like war; many of those hurt are completely innocent. And at one point, those of us who remember the past, recognized that strikes were being thrown way too often; in fact, they at one point were being used as extortion. Give it to us, or we’ll strike.  The middle class did well back then too.

Strikes hurt those striking.  During the strike they stop earning money.  Strikes hurt  employers whose revenue stream screeches to a stop.  They have to pay bills and have no income with which to pay them.  Strikes hurt customers and vendors of that company that is the target of the strike.   It is indicative that in these times, of all the strikes we have had in recent memory, most have all been done by millionaires striking against other millionaires.  By that I mean the sports industry.  Baseball, hockey, basketball, football…  no problem with them striking;  they have money to wait it out indefinitely.

Our middle class may be past that.  But strikes have a deeper purpose; if they are never used, that purpose ceases to exist.  A strike reminds the employer that they need to pay attention to those who are doing the work.  A strike reminds an employer that all are in life and business together,  Life is not a two layer system consisting of the overseer and the slaves; where one has all the privileges; the other all the pain.

Life is a cohabitation.  And sometimes the expense of a divorce is necessary to drive that point home.  For if you are completely confident that no one will ever strike, you can act with impunity.  Cut wages. Cut pensions. Cut rates. Cut benefits. If you always know that people will work for you, you can starve them to enrich yourself.  Really.  If there were no consequences: who wouldn’t?

War is always far more costly than the concessions of peace.  That was how strikes were won.  A business may balk at paying one percent more of its revenue towards its employees.  “That is outrageous” the business owner may puff.  “That will never happen.”

But he can only say that because he is confident that the employees will say, “oh, ok. Sorry we bothered you then.”   For if they went on strike, and his revenue drops down to zero, he has lost 10% of his potential yearly earnings because of the strike.  The 1% was rather cheap comparatively.

Which is why we need strikes to return.  We need the threat of a strike, to be real again.   What would happen if every teacher refused to return until Common Core was eradicated. We would finally have a serious discussion about Common Core and it would be eradicated.  What if dock workers in both Paulsboro and Wilmington went on strike until Dole decided to stay in Wilmington.  In a few short days, Dole would lose more cash than it would ever pay out  any other way…   What if policemen stopped working because their pension was being privatized?  What if all of Detroit simply stopped working until their pensions were guaranteed by the Federal Government.  What if the wait staffs and bartenders of every restaurant in Delaware refused to work, just stopped one day until their minimum wage set in 1990 was allowed to rise above $2.23 an hour?  What if nurses did not show for work, until rich investment companies owning hospitals, agreed not to steal their pensions, but fund them fully?  What if every administrative assistant in the Federal Government went on strike until Congress passed their budget?  What if no one services a broken car, in any garage across the country, until some of that $150 dollars an hour fo labor, went to them.

Can you see the implications?  In every case the cost of a strike is far more rigorous than the cost of the demand.  But it can only happen when there is a viable expectation that a strike is imminent.   An owner can be as invective as hell at the insolence of his worker daring to ask for more money,  but his accountants and lawyers with wiser heads, know full well that the cheapest way out is to give them what they want… Cheaper by one tenth.

So we have come to where strikes must occur, not only for individual workers, but for society as a whole.  Labor is underpaid, and it is time to use the laws of supply and demand to correct it.

And what will happen if we do?  Suddenly America will no longer be the safest place to park one’s money. The stock market will fall by billions.  Money will move out of our financial center over most likely to China, at the moment.  The wealthy certainly can’t have that.  It is far better to stop getting as high of a rate of return as one is used to,  than lose 40% of everything one has accumulated so far….

And that is the power behind committing to a strike.  As soon as the strike goes into effect, every shareholder of the company being struck, loses tremendous value on their investment.  Does that boss really want to face his angry shareholders at the next stockholders meeting?

The Declaration of Independence states that we have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  That adage doesn’t apply  just to the one percent.  Sometimes like that little boy at the beginning of this story, you just gotta hit back.

Remember Sweeney?  That character who was lampooned across the nation for his nonfactual support of Kinder-Morgan’s taking over our port?   Instead of being objective, his editorial board pieces are that of a pinch hitter for an administration again caught on the wrong side of an issue!  Remember the jokes? The aside comments that he has lost his touch?  Remember all the snide references that he must be on crack?

It is to those references (sincerely I doubt he does crack) and the acknowledgement that in popular culture today that phrase is often applied to everyone who tries to reform facts into a fairy tales, that I attached his name to it in the title…

In Sweeney’s defense through the manipulation of language, one can say anything.  Granted.  Romney certainly tried that tact. And the truth came out to hurt him.  “Jeeps in China”, my ass. “Benghazi was all Obama’s fault”, my ass.

So as old as Sweeney is, (he seems to mean well ), the facts he uses are simply not true…  If you put bad in, you get bad out.  Now if I were an aged,old authority figure, and if you were deemed childlikely to accept what I say is true, … I can tell you about a jovial man living at the North Pole, who has nine reindeer that fly and travels the world in one night delivering presents to every boy and girl in the world,… and of course you are going to look up at me with wide big eyes and go “wow, so that is how its done…”.

Alas, poor Sweeney, he doesn’t have the same beguiling audience.  Instead we have facts that show the opposite….

One of the facts WE the People have, is that the tests results coming from districts using this plan that show great results, were all obtained through cheating by high officials changing the answers over to correct ones after the students had taken them.

Two:  teachers under this system are spending too much time explaining to their superiors everything they do in order to be evaluated,  instead of teaching.  More time is spent in evaluation, than on lesson plans.  This hurts teacher. This hurts student.

Three: the curriculum being forced upon these classrooms is far inferior to what teachers themselves are able to dole out.  Education only works when a student’s interest is held.   These corporate templates are as interesting as your corporate financial  meetings.  Teachers do a much better job.

Four: low income students don’t have technology the rest of us take for granted.  Broadband costs money. Computer power costs money. Software costs money. Laptops cost money. Notebooks cost money.  The best way to raise low income students scores is to put them on par with students who have technology.  You can’t just tell someone how to log in and expect them to remember it whenever they next  see a computer.  They have to do so to learn how.

Five.  Testing at the beginning, the middle, and the end, is a great tool.  It evaluates a student’s progress over time.  BUT!  Holding a teachers job accountable to results over which they have absolutely no control, means…  a) all teaching by that teacher is geared to only what will be on that test… and b) since poor scores demand the loss of one’s livelihood,  rampant cheating is bound to occur…. We saw this in Atlanta, Texas, and DC.

Six.  The only proven and effective way to improve teaching, is to increase the number of teachers so there are 11 students per teacher.  Teaching is a personal science, like counseling, psychology, and doctor’s visits.  Without a personal relationship between teacher and student, there is no incentive to learn.  Studies as well as our personal experience, show that if we aren’t psyched to learn, we don’t….

Seven.  The students who do the poorest are the ones who have the largest social dishevel in their lives.  A person from this background can learn from a teacher just as easily as anyone else, if he believes the teacher is pulling for them, and they don’t want to let that teacher or their peers down.  That can and does  happen with a 11-1 ratio…

Eight.  Teachers DO NOT GO  into teaching to get rich.  They go to help children learn.  If you don’t know this, you have no human right to ever write another editorial on education.  That is just plain stupid not to know.  If you want to motivate teachers, the best way is to give them MORE resources with which to teach….  More maps, more books, more software, anything to provide more excitement to their classrooms.

Nine.  We all incorporate what we learn, into the categories we already have inside our heads.  Being an inner city child with no mother (on crack), no father (never knew him), living with grandma (forgets who I am sometimes), dodging getting beaten up by the drug lords every time you walk home from the bus to porch (its safe in the morning; they’re still asleep), disappearing when the molesting uncles happen to drop by, … reading about Sally having to choose between buying a candy bar or putting  all her cents into a piggy bank, doesn’t cut it.  You’d think Goldman-Sachs created the curriculum (they paid for it)…

Enough background…..  At least you know Sweeney is on metaphorical crack  just like he was with Kinder Morgan. (Panama Canal ships sailing up the Delaware, Sheesh)….

The heart of the matter lies in the News Journal’s phrase….Teachers that have earned highly-qualified credentials..

One would think that having a master’s degree or a doctor’s degree in education would qualify…  But no. Mr. Sweeney, it does not.  Mind if  WE, the People interrupt for a second to ask  if you happen to have a masters degree?  A doctor’s degree?  Is it in education?  No?  So, tell us again,  what makes you such an expert can we ask?  We, the People are dying to know.

Now get this.  To be one of these  “teachers that have earned highly-qualified credentials”  you have to first have attended a corporate seminar, one from a pandering company to which the state paid $180 dollars a person; you have to sit through 6 hours of power-point presentations; your  know-it-all instructor was just hired out of college by this corporation, and they proceed to tell you everything ever known about teaching without ever having been in a classroom. After this, you then take a test, having been given the answers ahead of time by clues of where the instructor casually says “this will be on the test”, and then, if you passed, you get a certificate saying you are a teacher with highly-qualified credentials.  Just like that.   You are now a highly qualified credential teacher; so who needs a masters, who needs a doctorate, who needs to read a stinkin’ Gannett publication? You got all the knowledge anyone ever needs to know.  You got a certificate that cost the state $180 dollars!….  You are now, eligible for a bonus… (if we (the DOE)  like you enough we choose to give it to you…

So if there are 8640 public school teachers in Delaware, at a cost of $180 per teacher, over time this company that originated out of nowhere, helps itself to $1.5 million dollars of our annual budget…   Now, not counting for the printing I can buy 8,000 sheets of  8 X 11  pieces of  24 lb. paper for around $71 dollars at Wal*Mart.  It would only take 20 sheafs of printer paper.   So to dole out $71-80 worth of pieces of paper printed with the words “Congratulations, You Are Certified“, our state is investing $1.5 million of your dollars… Why?  Can you say umm … kickback?  Personal favor?  Thanks for all you did back then?

In case one hasn’t been paying attention to the educational field, one would know that in the Christina district primarily due to our economy there are very few vacancies open from year to year.  One would also know, that in the  Christina district we have really good teachers practically in every classroom, who do better than the job that is expected except when they have to pull themselves away to do RTTT paperwork and explain to their evaluators how they are reinventing the wheel of teaching, or are on a pilot program teaching the Common Core agenda and cannot deviate.

So the Christina Board says this is ridiculous.  The Christina Board recognizes that teachers with a lifetime of experience, with masters and doctors degrees, know more about education then some punk out of college who passes the corporate litmus test.  After all, one would think, right?

The DSEA representing ALL THE TEACHERS IN DELAWARE,  and the Christina Education Association are fully backing the Christina Board on this.  As stated, teachers primarily want to teach.  This state program is very, very bad for teaching….  Although Mr. Sweeney might think otherwise, what teachers think, matters.  Especially if they are the ones teaching our kids.

Teachers are our most valuable resource as a society.  They are more important than our President.  They are more important than our Governor.  They are more important than any Mark Murphy or Lillian Lowery.  They are more important than the head of Goldman Sachs.  What?  You scoff?

Tell me, Mr. Sweeney?  When you look in the mirror in the morning… what president do you thank for making you who you are?   “Aww… Richard Nixon… Thank you so much for your leadership which was soooo inspiring, it made want to be like you…. I’m eternally grateful for all you did to inspire me, coach me, teach me, and give the the building blocks to make me as I am”   But sincerely, like all of us, I would damn well bet that somewhere in your growing up, there was one teacher or two, who is responsible for everything you’ve become.

In the book of We, the People … that teacher out ranks any governmental official…. any day…

I’ll close with an analogy to a story told long ago…  A woman was brought before Jesus accused of adultery.  They asked what should be done to her.  Jesus asked who was condemning her… knowing they too would be guilty of adultery if they admitted.  They left.  Jesus asked her, “who has condemned you?”  She looks around, and says ” no one Sir.”   “Then neither will I condemn you.  Arise, Go, and sin no more…”

It would be wise for Mr. Sweeney to remember this, before he goes writing his next editorial condemning the wrong people………..

Although the year is barely out, we do have our first nomination for the spot to be announced in December 2013.  With the Kinder Morgan Deal now on hold semi-permanently, even they are pointing to our hero of the year as the man most responsible for allowing the port to remain state owned….

I can say it was Julius Cephas who was behind almost every move to combat the loss of good jobs at our port.  He is being pointed out as the villain by the capitalists at Kinder Morgan.  In Delaware’s eyes, that elevates his hero’s stature even more…

In truth, he is no villain and knowing him, he will probably shun the acclimations being made by us common folk as being our hero.  In his eyes, he was just doing what needed to be done because no one else was there at that very moment to do it, and as that task swelled, it took a lot out of him….

Capitalists always need a villian.  But it was the “truth” which actually is what killed this deal.  Kinder Morgan WAS going to cut back on jobs, and their change of heart and blaming Julius instead of others, points exactly to the core of their problem with our port… …

People in Texas, do not understand unions.  They simply can’t fathom or understand how there can be an actual law that lets people strike and shut you down, whenever you try to pay them less..  In their eyes, you work for what they want to give you and if it is too little, ..humph.  go elsewhere….

The second culprit (after the “truth”),  was our office of economic development.  We gave Kinder Morgan too many “eager” signals that set us up as being seen as an easy pick.  They truly thought they could waltz in, pick up a top notch East Coast Port for a song, and we would eagerly give it up…  Again, that was because everything was done in secret.  Had a meeting been forthcoming in the very beginning,  Kinder Morgan might have moved on earlier when it became readily apparent, that southern Texas practices do not bode well in the Northeast…

Of course, being a corporation, they will blame the whistle blower.  (Ironic since the whistle blower of Enron works for them)..   Of course.  It is not like they find anything immoral in taking a state asset for a song, in firing those skilled dock workers, and replace them with some Spanish speaking Texans who never even heard of a union….

And Julius did blow that whistle. .  Like Rose on the Titanic, he took the whistle off of Jack (pun intended), and blew softly at first, then harder, and harder.   Gradually the sound registered on others ears….

Without Julius, Bob Marshall would not have pushed through Senate Bill 3.  Without Julius, most of the links showing up in everyone’s blog, would have not been found.  Without Julius, the case for protecting workers would not have even made the rounds of the Norman Oliver show….

There were many helpers. Bob Marshall, Nancy Willing, Norman Oliver, Norinda, Helene Keeley, Al Mascitti, Liz Allen, John Kowalko, and (an other blogger too shy to be mentioned here). When one looks back through all of them one sees from everywhere, there in the center of the universe,  stands a normal human being just like us, known to most … as Julius.

There will come a time when a better deal will arrive.  Could even be this year. There will come a time when a suitor who does care about Delaware, who does care about unions, about human beings, about those businesses on the outside, and who will want to upgrade the port for everyone’s interest, not just their own… And that suitor in this day and age, could even come from abroad.  Germany is very committed to union labor, to the environment, to being a good neighbor…. There are a great many possibilities out there that are immeasurable…. We definitely dodged a Texas bullet with this one….

When that suitor arrives… Julius’s stature will be set in cement….  For he did nothing really Herculean, except argue the truth…  He didn’t lie.  He didn’t connive,  He didn’t threaten….

That was done by our office of economic development.  Instead and unlike them, Julius told the truth.  He told the truth to anyone who would listen.  He told the truth enough, so many “did” listen….

And that is why, he  deserves this nomination as Delaware’s Man of the Year.  I know it is early into 2013, but great things just do not wait!!….

You will hear smears that Julius tubed the deal… I saw the letter and it is already out on WDEL and the Delawareonline’s News Journal… But as an impartial blogger, I can tell you exactly what killed this deal.

It was “the truth”.  The truth of what this deal would cost us Delawareans….. is what turned the tide and caused the outcry that rose up against it….

If Kinder Morgan really wanted this deal, they could have easily said… “we are expanding and putting 5 new berths out into the river.  We are buying the port for the bargain price of $5 billion.   We need those businesses outside the fence because the jobs we get, will soon be too big, we can’t do it ourselves.  We will keep the union just as it is;  Wilmington needs good jobs and we are going to do our part….  We are also going to contribute into an emergency fund to be used for any spill or environmental accident that takes place under our tenure….

Kinder Morgan could have done any of those things, … and didn’t…. The blame doesn’t lie with Julius after all…. Especially when you consider the following…

This Economic Council erred on Fisker Automotive.  Then it erred on Bloom Energy.  Then it tried to Kinder Morgan us out of our port…..   Someone rushed in  with a save to make sure that last one didn’t happen.

That person is now hereby nominated for Delaware’s Person of the Year…….

If you were supposed to be getting married and found your future spouse out on a date with someone else,  there is probably a good chance you won’t be getting married.   One could alway hope.  Perhaps it was a business meeting.  Perhaps it was an old friend?  Perhaps a long talk with a former love?

But in all probability, your fiancée is probably going to call the wedding off.

It is in this framework that we hear that Kinder Morgan,  the only approved suitor for the Port of Wilmington, has just bought out Copano for $5 billion.   Let’s see.  The total cost of their Wilmington Port investment up front fee was $16 million or 0.32 of One percent of what they just spent on buying out Copano.

That gives you an idea of how important Wilmington was  to them.

Today they signed an agreement totaling $30 million investment in improvements down in Southern Texas with Calpine, a power generating company.

At the same time they were meeting with the Diamond State Port Authority here just off 13 south of  State Road….

The Wilmington Port nor Diamond State Port have commented at this time….

Looking at the money there is a good chance we just got brushed off……