Why Can’t Democratic Leaders Break It Down Like Jon?

March 4, 2011 | Blog

Jon Stewart makes a compelling defense of teachers on the March 3rd Daily Show. He juxtaposes numerous comments made on Fox News during the 2010 debate in favor of extending the Bush tax cuts for couples earning more than $250,000 against the “avarice” of teachers earning around $50,000 a year plus benefits here in Wisconsin.

As one Fox anchor put it: “250,000 dollars is not rich for a family of four sending kids to college! It’s actually close to poverty!” Indeed. Further, Tracy Byrnes, a “Fox business contributor,” railed against reducing pay or rescinding bonuses for Wall Street CEOs whose firms were being bailed out by the U.S. government because of contractual obligations. But, recently, she favored reducing teacher pay and benefits regardless of whether they were promised under existing employment contracts. What’s fair is fair — or not.

Very interesting. The Republican argument is that we shouldn’t — and didn’t — let the Bush tax cuts expire on income over $250,000 (an amount only a fraction of Americans earn), but, in Wisconsin anyway, we should reduce the take-home pay for teachers by more than 8%.

Where’s the shared sacrifice? Or is that concept outdated in America?


  1. Reply

    Matthew K. Tabor

    March 5, 2011


    Speaking of shared sacrifice - what do you think of the local unions who have refused to give up guaranteed raises, even when forgoing them would save jobs in their schools?

  2. Reply

    Liam Goldrick

    March 5, 2011

    You know, Matthew, quite frankly, until someone stands up and succeeds in getting millionaires and billionaires to sacrifice during these bleak economic times (that some of their ilk helped to create), I'm not going to begrudge unions or working people their attempts to hold onto or fight over the scraps that are afforded them. In a perfect world, there would be shared sacrifice, but policymakers like those in Washington and like Governor Walker here in Wisconsin, are starting with the wrong folks and asking nothing of the people that actually have something to give. Something is seriously wrong with this nation right now and it is NOT the fault of public employee unions.

  3. Reply


    March 12, 2011

    Milwaukee teachers get a pay package that is over $100,000 per year, on average. I can only dream of getting those "scraps," and why should I agree that public servants should get paid that much because "HEY THERE ARE A FEW RICH GUYS OVER THERE!!!!"

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