Maybe you’ve seen this before. If you haven’t, you need to. If you have, it bears repeating. If there is any doubt about the intentions, the motives and the goals of the teachers union — the NEA and its Virginia affiliate the VEA — please listen to now former NEA General Counsel Bob Chanin the union’s 2009 convention, where he explains his “most important point” — it’s not about the merit of their positions, it’s not about students, it’s not even about “a vision for a great public school for every child.”
What’s it about, then? Power and money, baby! He says so proudly. Power, money and politics. One might even say bullying. Education? “That’s simply too high a price to pay” (ironic since they extract a huge price from taxpayers for failing schools, but that’s another subject). For all the posturing, disingenuine care for improvement, faux concern for education, demagoguing the need for more tax dollars, and vilifying of those who dare to offer solutions which don’t fit their status quo template, they sing a more revealing tune tune behind closed doors.
It’s important to know with whom you deal in the public policy arena and to understand their true intentions, which they often obscure by reasonable sounding public rhetoric. Discerning their aims isn’t usually difficult — the first howl against education choice and reform or for more taxes and spending for a failing system (a VEA broken record) gives it away. But it’s nice to hear them arrogantly admit exactly what they’re in it for — money and power — especially when they think no one is listening. That makes it a tad bit sweeter, though they seem not to suffer any shame from it. More and more, however, people are waking up to the real motivation (as they themselves state it) behind the teachers union and its bosses.
“It is not because the merits of our positions. It is not because we care about children. … NEA is effective we because we have power !”