Sunday, March 27, 2011

7 Minutes to Understanding What's Really Going On.

Here's a 7-minute segment from the Rachel Maddow Show which beautifully sums up what's really happening with regard to public employees.

"Everybody knows" that public employees earn more than those in the private sector.

"Everybody knows that public-sector workers are doing better economically than their private-sector counterparts" How many times have you heard that recently? Problem is, it's simply not true! If you repeat a lie enough times, it starts to be believed (remember "death panels?")

It is true that the average public employee earns more than the average private-sector worker. But when Bill Gates walks into a restaurant, every patron--on average--becomes a millionaire! We need to compare apples with apples. In Wisconsin, for example, 60% of public-sector workers have earned at least a bachelor's degree, versus 20% of private-sector workers. (Public-sector workers include teachers, lawyers, nurses and other medical professionals, engineers, etc. All occupations requiring advanced educational levels.) A more appropriate comparison would be to look at how workers with equivalent educations are compensated in each sector. Here are the numbers from the Economic Policy Institute. Note that these numbers include both wages and non-wage benefits such as health care and pension.

You can find the source for this chart, as well as further explanation by clicking here.


Welcome to my new blog, in which teachers--as well as other public employees--are NOT seen as the cause of the decline of western civilization!

I am a retired public school teacher. I spent the first 28 years of my 33-year career teaching HS physics. My last 5 years were spent as the district's computer coordinator.

Along the way, I spent several years as the president of my local teachers' union and also negotiator. I started my teaching career just as teachers in NY were forming their first union (NY State United Teachers - NYSUT).

Public employees in general--and teachers in particular--are currently under attack. It is the purpose of this blog to give teachers some hard ammunition with which to fight back against the "everybody knows" arguments wielded by those who don't bother to actually get the facts, but simply rely on biased news outlets, accepting their "talking points" as proven facts delivered from the hand of God.

If you're familiar with Ezra Klein's wonderful Wonkbook blog at the Washington Post. this blog will operate in a similar manner. It will be a combination of my commentary and links to germane items from sources around the internet.

This blog has just been created, but it won't be long before we get rolling with the message that "Teachers Are Not the Problem!"