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6 State Battlegrounds in the Right-Wing War Against Teachers, Firefighters, Caregivers and the Entire Middle Class

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You're not likely to have known Robert Clark, Ruth West, Chet Newall, Webb Kamp, or Darrell Odom, but I wouldn't be who I am without them. And you might have a similar honor roll of those who spurred, inspired, lured, intrigued, goaded, and otherwise motivated you to do more than you might otherwise have done -- a list of your special public school teachers. The junior-high, senior-high, and college teachers on my list largely sparked my lifelong interests in language, history, politics, and how (and for whom) government really works.

However, I was naive about their motivation. Little did I know at the time that their ilk are tax-sucking leeches, glorified babysitters, overpaid slugs who leave work at 3 p.m. and take the whole summer off. "Greedy," as New Jersey Governor Chris Christie barked at teachers in his state.

Thus America is suddenly at war against its own teachers -- along with its firefighters, police officers, public health researchers and caregivers, sanitation workers, census takers, park rangers, air traffic controllers, and the whole horde of 'do-nothings' on the public payroll. Fire 'em, bust their unions, take away their democratic rights, slash their pay, increase their workloads, eliminate their pensions, and (most especially) scorn them.

Those are not just the vitriolic sentiments of a few red-faced, tea-party lunatics -- but of a squawking flock of right-wing governors, state legislators, mayors, and members of Congress. These are our leaders speaking!


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