Paul Ryan on the Governor-Teacher Showdown in Wisconsin:
"[Governor Scott Walker] and I are very close friends. We e-mail each other quite a bit... He's basically saying that state workers which have extremely generous benefits packages relative to their private sector counterparts, they contribute next to nothing to their pensions, very, very little in their health care packages.
He's asking that they contribute about 12 percent for their health care premiums, which is about half of the private sector average, and about 5.6 percent to their pensions. It's not asking a lot. It's still about half of what private sector pensions do and health care packages do.
So he's basically saying "I want you public workers half of what your private sector counterparts do" and he's getting riots. It's like Cairo has moved to Madison these days." (SOURCE)
You can't give what you don't have. Any teacher that doesn't grasp that shouldn't be a teacher.
Then again, the more contact I have with teachers...the less confident I am about them guiding my children's educational journey. Recently I had one tell my son that Reagan was more known for "win one for the Gipper" than "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall." And I am in a Blue Ribbon, Colin Powell Best Place to Live school district.
I understand that this pension was part of some deal. That one time or another when the state couldn't give a raise or a requested perk...the pension package was sweetened as a consolation. I get it. But if I promise my kid $20 a week in allowance and I get laid off--the offer is immediately null and void. The money source has dried up by no one's fault. No one WANTS to get services/perks cut...but everyone will have to. (I also know that protests probably aren't as bad as they appear because the DNC has admitted to busing in protesters).
When I was living in the UK, the Spice girls were HUGE. I remember telling everyone how this could never happen in America. That 4, barely good looking girls that couldn't sing at all could never be that famous. Then I stepped off the plane and "If you wanna be my lover, you better get with my friends..." was booming everywhere! Agh! My country let me down.
And when the disgustingly entitled 20-somethings in first France then Greece were rioting because the retirement got raised 2 years and they were told they could only take 16 weeks paid vacations instead of 23...I said NEVER could that happen here. Americans understand that when there's no money, things must be cut. Americans know that you can't get blood from a stone.
And then I saw the protests in Wisconsin. Again, I feel let down.
(I'm now sitting here thinking of a few teachers that I've had and that my boys have had and there are some SUPERB teachers out there and if we could clone them...this world would be a better place. The ones that I am thinking of wouldn't be calling in sick and leaving the kids with no instruction...)