Making teachers mad

From the new issue of NEWS & LETTERS, May-June 2011:

Making teachers mad

Los Angeles–In the school district where I work, they have cut two hours per day from the non-teaching staff. It affects insurance for employees with a family. A security worker told me, “I lose $700 per month.” Teachers are losing six furlough days per year, and step increases are frozen. That is in an economy where food prices are shooting up, and driving to work is a luxury.

The union is proposing these cuts to save the jobs of 28 teachers. The laborer is making all the concessions, yet the capitalist tells us that we are the cause of the economy’s ills. Others think that workers should be thankful to have a job. The system wants people to think that to exist under capitalism is a privilege. After all, see what happened to socialism, they argue. But we are the ones who by our work are making sure the system survives.

There is no money for healthcare, education, and the poor. In the view of capitalists, they are non-productive humans who don’t contribute to the system. The draconian federal cuts in social services are indicative of that.

This cycle will continue unless we redefine our social relationship to each other. That will not happen unless we get rid of the capitalistic mode of living. We are the workers and we are the builders. We need to rebuild a new way of life. We need to shut the system down.


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