PHILADELPHIA, April 20 — Workers across the country are being forced to supposedly “share” the sacrifices by giving up raises, benefits, pensions, and even their unions! There are some differences among the ruling class as to how the attack should be carried out (out-right smashing of unions as in Wisconsin vs. using the sellouts to “only” roll-back wages and benefits) but in the end, all of the ruling-class plans will be devastating to workers.
Here in Philly, the main brunt of the attack is on teachers. Teachers are being blamed for lousy test scores and the general deterioration of education. The offensive against teachers is more than “just another group of workers being singled out for punishment.” They are a key part of the bosses’ anti-communist arsenal. The schools both teach and reinforce all of the anti-worker lies that the ruling class wants the next generation of workers to learn: (1) anti-communism, the bosses’ trump card in destroying worker fight-backs, (2) racism, the key to worker disunity, (3) individualism, the basic philosophy of capitalism, and (4) patriotism, loyalty to the ruling-class government.
While the bosses need the schools to miss-educate the working class, they can no longer afford the expense that requires. As a result, it is vital that teacher salaries, benefits, and pensions be drastically reduced. Here are some of the ways this is being done in Pennsylvania (and Philadelphia in particular):