Definition of OLIGARCHY
1 : [Union]government by the few
2 : a
government [Union] in which a small group exercises control especially for corrupt and selfish purposes; also : a group exercising such control
3 : an organization under oligarchic control
Average teacher makes $44G while their top union bosses pull in nearly $500G
July 14, 2012
Teachers across the country face pay freezes and possible layoffs, but the heads of the two biggest teachers unions saw their pay jump 20 percent last year, to nearly half a million dollars apiece.
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten’s pay jumped to $407,323 between 2010 and 2011, while her counterpart at the National Education Association, Dennis Van Roekel, got a raise to $362,644. Factor in stipends and other paid expenses and Weingarten took in $493,859 and Van Roekel $460,060 for 2011.
“Are teachers or anyone in the private sector experiencing those increases in times of financial hardship?”
- Gary Beckner, Association of American Educators
The big salaries drew jeers from many educators and their advocates in the U.S., where the average nationwide salary for teachers is a scant $44,000 a year. By contrast, nearly 600 staffers at the NEA and AFT are raking in six-figure salaries, according to Association of American Educators Executive Director Gary Beckner.
“In terms of salaries, union executives rake in nearly 10 times the average household income and far more than any teacher,” Beckner told FoxNews.com. “Are teachers or anyone in the private sector experiencing those increases in times of financial hardship?”
The union bigwigs are well-insulated from the paycheck-to-paycheck lives of most schoolteachers, said Tracie Happel, a elementary school teacher in Lacrosse, Wisc., who has spoken out in the past against the practices of the unions.
“It’s always about the union. It’s never about the teachers or students,” Happel said. “When you’re a teacher, you know you will not always be able to have the money for renovations on a house or go away on vacation, but it’s a tough pill to swallow when you can’t do those things when the people who are supposed to represent us get paid more and more every year.”
Happel added that while she is safe for now, many of her colleagues in worse situations.
“They are finding it hard to pay their bills. They are having trouble with basic monthly bills.”
Officials for the NEA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“Last year, I and the other two AFT officers, as well as all management took a voluntary pay freeze,” Weingarten, president of AFT said in a statement.
“We did so because no one knows better than we do the economic distress our members are experiencing. Unlike in the corporate sector, all of my salary, benefits and expenses are fully disclosed,” Weingarten said.
But John Ellsworth, a teacher in the Michigan’s Grand Ledge Public Schools, told the Mackinac Center, a Michigan-based think tank, that teachers deserve the best advocates union dues can buy.
“Public education is vital for the preservation and growth of our nation and its economy,” Ellsworth said in an email. “Leaders of the national teachers’ union try to rally people behind this truth. I wish we had people serving in government who recognized the importance of public education, but instead children and teachers need their own advocates since politicians abandon public education so readily.”
Tony Amorose, a history teacher with the Dearborn School District in Michigan, said no one begrudges union officials fair salaries. But he said the steep increases are out of step with what the rank and file see. After 21 years of teaching, he earns $74,000 a year. He said he gets by just fine, but worries about the pay younger and less experienced teachers get.
“It would be nice if the unions held the line a bit in a show of solidarity,” said Amorose, who is campaigning for state office. “I don’t mind paying dues, but I don’t see them going down with my compensation. They keep going up. I find it a bit frustrating that they would give themselves such significant salary and compensation increases.”
Michael Van Beek, Mackinac’s director of education policy said the problem isn’t necessarily high pay for union leaders, it’s the way they get it.
“These compensation levels are not based on market demand,” Van Beek said. “This pay largely relies upon monopolistic collective bargaining privileges these unions enjoy, which forces school employees to financially support them. This is why transparency of these unions is so important.”
The significant raises of the two union leaders salaries came at a time when the saw memberships dwindling.
Are some Unions run like the mafia?
From the President of the Union, to their assistants, to their regional Unions, to local Union persuaders/enforcers, etc. down to the Union member/worker (Associate).
Cosa Nostra (Mafia Chart)
Read by clicking on blue lettered link below
While Union Members Rank and File Eat Hot Dogs and Generic Mac and Cheese: Union Leadership Yearly Salary AND Jet Set Includes Labor Bosses
NOW ADD THIS:
Jet set includes labor bosses
By Cornelius Chapman
June 13, 2012
The private jet is an easy target for those obsessed with income inequality. Can there be any more obnoxious symbol of wealth and privilege than a corporate fat cat climbing aboard a sleek chartered plane, avoiding the long lines and security that the rest of us suffer through?
The justifications for such excess usually strike ordinary working stiffs as pious pretexts: The security risks are too great for the CEO to fly commercial, the executive’s time is too valuable to stick to airline schedules, or you get more work done if you don’t have to sit next to a screaming baby.
If you don’t buy these claims, you are free to sell the stock of a company that makes them, or to boycott its goods and services. But what if you’re forced to pay for a high-flying executive’s luxury travel because of a legal monopoly?
That’s the position that union members — and sometimes other taxpayers — find themselves in when top labor leaders share their business counterparts’ distaste for rubbing elbows with the grubby masses.
Take the Machinists Union, which has a private Lear Jet that cost $13 million new, and $1.8 million a year to operate when pilots, hangars, jet fuel and maintenance are added up.
It only carries 10 passengers, so there’s no room for the rank and file.
The machinists endorsed then-Sen. Barack Obama in 2008, after which his administration adopted a policy of “non-enforcement” against unions which failed to comply with new and tougher rules regarding disclosure of travel expenditures.
At least the machinists have to compete in the free market, so that taxpayers aren’t footing the bill for trips to Las Vegas and other sites that occupy a cherished place in American labor history. In the case of AFSCME, the nation’s largest public sector union, taxes and compulsory union dues are the source of funds that paid for 18 chartered flights for its president over the past two years.
In most cases, public sector workers have no choice about whether to join a union, and taxpayers have nowhere else to go for the public services they need. The 80 percent of Americans who always fly coach have to wonder why union leaders aren’t happy with first or even business class.