Friday, July 10, 2009
Sometime during the never-ending presidential campaign, I saw Barack Obama say to the NEA, "I'm not gonna do it to ya, I'm gonna do it with ya," or words to that effect. Now, I read that his appointee has declared that NY State has to change its tenure law or we will not receive funds for education.
This comes on the heels of Arne Duncan's ultimatum our state must lift the cap on charters or face losing money--and I've no doubt New York already pays plenty more than we get back.
So when Obama said he was going to involve teachers in his decision-making process, what he meant was that he was going to steamroll the Gates-Broad-Walmart-Bloomberg agenda and exclude them utterly. That's the sort of thing politicians refer to as "clarification."
I voted for Obama and expected better. Given the alternative, I can't say I regret it. And Obama has promised reforms I support--better Supreme Court appointments, better health care, and easier union organization. Any of those things will still make him a better choice than McCain.
But still--we won this election. Barack Obama not only got more votes than his opponent, but went on to occupy the office. You'd think he'd have a little regard for those of us he made promises to. You'd think someone peddling hope would lead us away from our cynical ways.
Thus far, you'd be entirely mistaken.