Monday, January 05, 2009
Mayor Bloomberg, appearing jointly with UFT President Randi Weingarten, has announced that he will negotiate lower fines for parking tickets for any New Yorker who asks. How will he pay for this measure, given the prospect of a bleak city budget? The Mayor stated it would not affect the budget in at all.
"Every time we reduce a fine by, say, twenty bucks, we'll deduct the same twenty bucks from the paycheck of a city teacher. That way, it's a win-win," contended Mayor Bloomberg.
This was almost certain to draw the ire of some city teachers. But Ms. Weingarten, in a continuing spirit of reform, had only encouraging words for the program:
"First of all, all VIP teachers are members of the invitation-only Unity Caucus. I've given Mayor Bloomberg a list of our members, and they will be excluded from the pool. Therefore, only less important teachers would see the deductions on their paychecks, and in all likelihood, they won't even notice. If they do, we'll simply refund the money and deduct it from someone else."
Pressed for further explanation, Ms. Weingarten said, "Look, three-fourths of working teachers don't vote in union elections, and probably don't read this paper. I didn't hear a whimper from them when I partnered up with Green Dot Schools, which rejects both tenure and seniority, and no one objected when I told DC teachers everything was on the table except vouchers. And anyway, DC already has vouchers, so what's the dif, really?"
Several teachers, when asked to comment on Ms. Weingarten's statements, asked, "Who's Randi Weingarten?"