What they are Doing at Ross will soon come to Lakota: A promise I’ll make if you’ll vote correctly

In case you haven’t heard dear reader, the future of Lakota is actually happening in the Ross Township school system where they just passed a levy a short while ago and now the teacher’s union there is begging for a raise based on the extra revenue. And as reported by the soft taco education writer for the Journal-News, Michael D. Clark, the Ross teachers just rejected the latest offer by the school board even after a federal mediator came in to help resolve the matter. We also have seen nationally that the Chicago teacher’s union have been striking yet again to demand pay increases leaving thousands of parents scrambling to find somewhere to put their kids during their busy workdays. In my world, I would say to fire every single one of them and replace them with brand new employees who are not part of the union. But these are all government schools. We hire a school board through the election process to represent us at the table, but honestly, and they all know it, there is only one eventual resolution, they will have to agree to the pay increases one way or another because all other options to manage the situation is illegal. The government has ensured its employees of that much, and they use it against taxpayers all the time, and to hell with the children. The Ross teachers don’t give a damn about the kids otherwise they’d take the money the school board was willing to give them, and they’d shut the hell up and like it.

And that is precisely why the Lakota teacher’s union is eager to elect Ray Murray and Julie Shaffer to the school board so that when it comes time to have this same negotiation next year with the union, that Ray and Julie will lay down and give them all that they want without a lot of fuss. Because after all, the deck is stacked against management and they don’t want a lot of bloody news in the newspaper hurting their union brand. Ross Township in relation to other schools in Butler County is out across the river in no man’s land. Not really along any big commercial paths. It’s kind of the wild west version of a community in the very Republican county. So its easy to ignore and overlook in the paper. But it has all the same problems that a big school like Lakota has just to the east by ten miles or so. And what is happening there is a mirror reflection of what is coming to Lakota where a lot of people will be very upset when the same conditions are presented to them as voters.

Michael Clark and reporters like him are part of the problem. They are just going through the motions in life, and don’t want to disrupt their contacts on these school boards. So his reporting is soft shelled when it comes to the education beat because his newspaper employer relies on the old system to work, they need the sports pages, the advertising connected to that system and the ankle deep reporting that never gets to the heart of the kind of topics that are really floating around in the depths of all education. When he writes a story, it doesn’t put pressure on the union representatives like Robin Plowman at Ross to get her members in line to the school board demands. It only puts pressure on the school board because all the powers of nature are aligned by the rules and regulations to destroy their position, made worse by the reporters who are clearly aligned politically with the teacher’s union. For school boards its like being trapped in a house surrounded by armed forces and they’ve cut off your power and water and food supply. Eventually you’ll have to come out into a hail of gun fire. And as a school board member, you are expected to like it.

What we need desperately, especially at Lakota are school board members like Lynda O’Connor and James Hahn to hold the line during next year’s contract negotiations and when the teacher’s threaten to strike, which they will, to be willing to tell them to take a hike. But that is only one part of the puzzle. To fight their out of school antics, there need to be people like me willing to fight them with their games. I’m not saying it has to be me, it would be nice if it was a bunch of people like me, but someone has to engage them radical antic to radical position because that’s the way they fight and it’s the only path to beat them. The community has to back its school board and take the fight to the lap of the teacher’s unions knowing that you can’t trust the newspapers or the television reporters to stand behind the community representatives. I am certainly willing to do that and I have under considerable fire which I enjoy. That has been the point of this continued fight over the last decade. What’s different now is that there is a chance to get a real school board in place instead of a lot of those soft-shell tacos that Michael Clark likes so much so he can write those easy stories and not ruffle any feathers with his editors. He has enough ruffled feathers living in that beard of his especially this time of year as birds too lazy to fly south for warmer weather just reside in his beard.

What voters have to come to terms with, and we all have to accept is that teacher’s unions do not put children ahead of their paychecks. They use them as extortion pieces, but they don’t love them at all, and will abandon them in the classroom to put leverage on their contract negotiations without a second thought. There are lots of teachers that I have talked to who will say to me that union membership is a requirement and that they have no choice but to hide within membership and do what the leadership tells them. The union understands that too, they don’t give their membership a choice in the matter, they expect their members to follow their lead and use their numbers as leverage in negotiations. If the teachers go along with it but silently send messages out that they really just want to teach the kids, they are still acting against the children by allowing the union to have all that power. They are contributing to evil every time and its their fault that these negotiations go so poorly. If they are honest with themselves, they just want the pay increase. They aren’t doing the work for the pleasure of teaching children—even if the district can’t afford them. They just want the money and the union gets it through collective bargaining which is stacked against the school boards in every circumstance.

At Lakota things are a bit different. I am personally willing to fight the union if the school board will stick up to them. But first we must have a school board that will do so. The next time there is a strike at Lakota I will take that fight to them building a coalition of our own and to hell with that federal moderator and Michael Clark’s reporting. Put real school board members on the board and I will promise that I will defend that board with whatever it takes to beat that union. But first you will have to vote for James Hahn and Lynda O’Connor on Tuesday November 5, 2019. Do that much and we’ll take care of the rest. Unlike reporters such as Michael Clark I will get the dirt on every member of the teacher’s union, who they are sleeping with, who they didn’t tip well at a local restaurant, even what kind of underwear they are wearing and we will paint the world with their antics. And they won’t like it one bit. That’s what will happen the next time teachers at Lakota try what they are doing now at Ross and ultimately Chicago. It’s a game I’m sick of seeing and I’m not a soft taco kind of guy. I like a lot of hot sauce and there is plenty of it there to consume. Now get out there and VOTE!

Rich Hoffman