Is Matt Damon Right That Teachers Make a "Shitty" Salary?

At last Saturday's "Save Our Schools" rally, a fairly livid actor Matt Damon told Reason.tv that teachers make a "shitty" salary. Is the Oscar winner right about that?

The short answer is no. The longer answer? Also no.

According to Department of Education statistics for 2007-2008 (the most recent year listed), the average public school teacher brought in a bit over $53,000 in "total school-year and summer earned income." That figure, which is about $13,000 more than what the average private-school teacher gets in straight salary, does not include health and retirement benefits, places where teachers almost always get better deals and bigger employer contributions than the typical private-sector worker. For more on teacher compensation, go here.

An average salary of $53,000 may not be much for a movie star such as Damon, but it's a pretty good wage when compared to U.S. averages. Indeed, the Census Bureau reports that median household income in 2008 was $52,000. Teaching in most public schools requires a bachelor's degree and here teachers fare less well on first glance, though still not awful. The median income for a man with a B.A. was $82,000; for a woman, it was $54,000. About three-quarters of teachers are women, so the average salaries when gender comes into play hew closely to one another.

More to the point, Bureau of Labor Statistics and other surveys that take into account the reported number of hours worked in a year consistently show that on a per-hour basis, teacher income (again, not including fringe benefits, which are typically far more robust than those offered other workers, including college-educated professionals) is extremely strong. To wit:

 

So teachers are not compensated poorly. And, as the link above suggests and contrary to another assertion made by Damon, it turns out that teachers don't work long hours. At least not compared to other professionals.

None of this is to argue that teaching is easy or unimportant. But K-12 educators are not paid poorly. They may have good reason to be mad at their collective bargaining units, however. Since 1991, teacher salaries have generally kept pace with inflation while inflation-adjusted per-pupil funding has gone up by more than 25 percent. So even as more dollars are heading to schools, teachers aren't grabbing much of it, at least not at the same rate as the per-pupil funding increases. Their unions and negotiators may be grabbing more. There are more teachers per student than ever before, so it appears that part of the money is going into more staffing rather than paying existing employees more.

The bottom line: Teachers are not paid poorly relative to the average worker or to other professionals.

Now can we get back to a far more important question: How in the hell is sending even more money to a broken system going to help the students for whom schools exist in the first place?

The short answer is that it won't. The slightly longer answer? Read more here.

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  • ||

    all the lefty sites were fapping over this video earlier today, I was wondering why it took so long for you guys to make a comment

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Don't make me pull the Pharyngulites' quotes out. You might get nauseated!

  • fyngyrz||

    The premise of the article is a total logic fail. It says that because 52k is the median salary, it isn't shitty. But that has no bearing on the matter. What matters is where you live and what your unavoidable cost of living is. As it turns out, except for extremely rural areas of the country where land values and taxes are both relatively low, 52k *is* a shitty salary.

  • ||

    As it turns out, except for extremely rural areas of the country where land values and taxes are both relatively low, 52k *is* a shitty salary.

    Citation needed

  • ||

    If they compared the median teacher salary in, say, New York City with the median US salary, you would be on point.

    I am sure if you checked the median salary of New York City teachers, it would be higher than the median given.

  • ||

    What matters is where you live and what your unavoidable cost of living is. As it turns out, except for extremely rural areas of the country where land values and taxes are both relatively low, 52k *is* a shitty salary.

    So what you are really saying is that the problem is overtaxation and overinflated value in real estate?

    Well, let's see. The government is the group that imposes taxes, and those taxes have increased dramatically due to unsustainable legacy costs stemming from PubSec union contracts.

    Oh, and the government has ensured an inflationary bubble in real estate through market manipulation.

    Basically, you just made an argument for the free market and lowered taxation. Thanks for stopping by!

  • The Doctor||

    First off, the median salary of anyone with a BA is $82,000. News flash, teachers have BA's, so they are actually woefully underpaid.

    Second, the reason for inflation has nothing to do with taxes, you obviously know nothing about economics. Inflation historically has always been at it's worst in a free market system.

    Third, I will inform you of something that is of vital importance to you. You sir, are a nitwit.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    First off, the median salary of anyone with a BA is $82,000. News flash, teachers have BA's, so they are actually woefully underpaid.

    Well, with that kind of impeccable logic, let's lower teacher's salaries to $20K a year and they can REALLY show us what DEDICATED WORKHORSES they are!

    Second, the reason for inflation has nothing to do with taxes, you obviously know nothing about economics. Inflation historically has always been at it's worst in a free market system.

    Robert Mugabe likes this.

    Third, I will inform you of something that is of vital importance to you. You sir, are a nitwit.

    You don't seem to be holding too many crayons yourself, chimpy.

  • ||

    "News flash, teachers have BA's, so they are actually woefully underpaid."

    So, because they chose to be a teacher, it's everyone else' problem that they later decide they need more money?

    I guess, you know, changing careers never occurred to them.

  • ||

    Amazing how many people think teacher+degree=deserves lots of cash. So if a Kindergarten teacher has a Phd they should make six figures?!

    These advanced degrees are in subjects like particle physics and aerodynamic engineering, right? Oh, they are in Advanced ABC's and Naming the primary colors?

    Why in the hell do you need an advanced degree, and the corresponding high salary, to teach primary education?! Because lots of people really want to get over-paid for being a glorified baby sitter? Because you just can't teach a child their ABC's without an advanced college degree?

  • ||

    News flash: The National Center for Education Statistics reports that the median salaries for those with Bachelors Degrees is 45-55 thousand dollars per year. Whereas teachers fall within this range, they are paid a median salary.

  • ||

    Quick correction: That statistic is actually for all individuals with a bachelors degree or higher. IE the exact demographic that teachers fall in.

  • Joe||

    No, they are NOT underpaid. Having been involved with one for a long time, I can't tell you how many times she complained that I, an Architect, who worked normal hours, worked too much for her taste, and wasn't paid well enough, despite my having 10 more years in my profession than she had in hers'.

    For all the bennies - things like a housing supplement for living in the (rich suburban county) she was visibly confused and ocasionally irate that I ***wasn't*** a teacher, thus denying her the amount of free time that teachers get.

    To boot, she and all of her coven used to endlessly complain about not making enough, the agonies of working a 6-7 hour day, losing a day here of there of summer vacation due to admiinistrative issues or a weather day.

    In short they were the laziest, neediest, greediest people I had ever met in my life, and they were obscenely OVERPAID, contributed virtually NOTHING to their benefits out of their pay, and were still deeply disinterested in the fate of "our youts".

    What's worse, is what I would hear that was well kept from the outside world: that there seemed to be a child molestation case almost monthly committed by a teacher or employee of the county school system.

  • ||

    Jesus. There are a lot of poor people in the thread.

    Teacher's make a lot of money? Pfft. Go back to the fryline guys and continue your jealousy over teachers' enormous salaries.

  • ||

    She wouldn't be your ex would she Joe?

    You sound a bit bitter.

    I've worked as a teacher - if you are serious about this job there are tonnes of hours spent in preparation, planning and correction - let alone the hours spent merely reading and musing in order to get inspiration in order to come with a kick botty lesson!

    There are chimps in every profession - but more so when you pay peanuts.

  • RH||

    The median salary of anyone with a B.A. is 82K? Where do you get that?

    I live in one of the most expensive areas of the country and I'm an accountant without a CPA. I don't make anything remotely close to that. I don't even make the average teachers salary around here. Go look at the parking lot at a school sometime. I noticed way nicer cars than mine when my kids were in H.S.

    I also note that if you look up the salary chart for teachers here (it's all public on the web), the teachers get nice raises for each few years they are teaching. Not the usual 3-5% like the rest of us.

    Check the facts out before you write.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    As it turns out, except for extremely rural areas of the country where land values and taxes are both relatively low, 52k *is* a shitty salary.

    LOL at this goonfiction.

  • ||

    52K in the Midwest is a fine salary. Especially for a double-incomer family.

    I make a bit over 52k and support an entire family (single income). We aren't exactly rich but we aren't starving in the streets either.

  • Jeffrey||

    I supported myself and a girlfriend in DC with that salary.

  • ||

    Damn. Again, what's with all the poor people on this site? $52k for a teacher with tenure is chump change.

    Get a second job or become a teacher. Dealing with people's bratty-ass kids for 50-60 hours a week is totally worth $52k. Am I right?

  • ||

    Damn. Again, what's with all the poor people on this site? $52k for a teacher with tenure is chump change.

    Get a second job or become a teacher. Dealing with people's bratty-ass kids for 50-60 hours a week is totally worth $52k. Am I right?

  • yonemoto||

    Shit, I live in San Diego and I make less than 40! Pity me and my science PhD! I make the impossible happen, and I get paid less than a teacher?

  • ||

    Took Nick some time to figure out how to spin the numbers.

    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless.

    If you have to lie or fudge numbers, you probably lost the argument.

    Teachers have bachelor degrees. over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.

    Now, compare their salary with other fields that require the same education.

    I like Reason, but this is a dishonest hack piece.

  • pmains||

    You should Inside American Education by Thomas Sowell. People who come out of education programs are college graduates in name only and the fact that they award each other master's degrees is nauseating.

  • ||

    And this changes nothing even if I agree.

    The fact remains that people with a Masters make much more money.

    And that's the book where he argues sex ed causes teen pregnancy. Yeah, put that book down bro.

  • pmains||

    Do you have reason to disagree with what he said? One of the reasons I like Thomas Sowell is that he provides a strong evidentiary case for his assertions. If your response is, "hahaha," that's not an argument at all.

    Bro.

  • ||

    "One of the reasons I like Thomas Sowell is that he provides a strong evidentiary case for his assertions. "

    Then you didn't read the book.

    He argues sex ed cause rising pregnancy and abstinence only ed lowers it.

    You want the numbers that prove it 100% wrong? Sowell is a hack.

  • pmains||

    So, you disagree with his conclusion. Do you have evidence or do you want to keep repeating and unsubstantiated assertion?

  • ||

    Go look at the real pregnancy numbers in school districts that are "abstinence only". Then look at school districts with real sex ed.

    I'll wait. Then come back and we talk about Sowell and his intellectual honesty.

  • ||

    I've got a better idea, dammaze. Why don't you provide links to support your assertion.

    We'll all wait here while you go get them.

  • pmains||

    Thanks, sloopy.

    And to be honest, I really don't care if Sowell is right or wrong on that individual point regarding teen pregnancy. It doesn't invalidate the widely known truth that education majors just aren't very bright.

  • ||

    You just admitted you don't care at all if Sowell lies as long as it reinforces your worldview.

    Thanks for the honesty.

  • pmains||

    I didn't say I don't care if he lied. I said I didn't care if he was wrong about an individual point. I'm sure he has made many mistakes, just as we all have. But I'm not going to keep flogging one mistake (or perceived mistake) as evidence that he is wrong about everything.

  • D-Rock||

    Ok, you're clearly fine with him being wrong on this ONE thing so that he can be right on others, then you go on to paint a broad brush stroke about how "dumb education majors are." On the first point you ARE fine with him lying or are at least fine with complicity in his lie. And on the second point, citation NEEDED!

  • Lazystupidunderworkedoverpaid||

    I refer you to the name of this publication and its definition: Reason: the capacity for rational thought or inference or discrimination.
    Concerning your post:
    1. Support your claim with peer-reviewed citations: "It doesn't invalidate the widely known truth that education majors just aren't very bright."
    2. "And to be honest, I really don't care if Sowell is right or wrong on that individual point regarding teen pregnancy." Invalid. Personal feelings have no place here.
    3. "Do you have evidence or do you want to keep repeating and unsubstantiated assertion?"
    I refer you to:http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1054139X07004260 and http://www.sciencedirect.com/s.....34a362ff96

  • pmains||

    Your answer to the question is that I should do static rather than dynamic analysis? Good grief.

    As Sowell documents, non-abstinence sex education correlates with increasing levels of teen pregnancy. Now, if you disagree with his methodology or have reason to believe that his numbers are wrong, please share.

    Otherwise, you have failed to provide an argument.

  • ||

  • ||

    I can't wait to watch you deny the actual numbers than admit Sowell's assertion was 100% wrong.

  • ||

    If there are a million studies out there, why were both links to stories about the same study? Oh, and that study was performed by the Guttmacher Institute, a group dedicated to advancement of contraception and headed by a CEO who came over from the lobbyist group for Plan B.

    If anything, it shows disparities along socioeconomic and racial lines re: teen pregnancy rates, and makes an unsupported assertion about what is taught in this areas. It as just easier for them to publish their confirmation bias that it was for them to say "black and Hispanic teens keep having babies like crazy while Asians and whites do not regardless of where they go to school or what they are taught.

    Care to link any more of that million studies that are out there? Perhaps a couple of unbiased ones?

  • ||

    1. The first link is the CDC you moron.

    "and makes an unsupported assertion about what is taught in this areas. "

    The CDC has direct data on whick states/school districts are abs only or sex ed.

    "Care to link any more of that million studies that are out there? Perhaps a couple of unbiased ones?"

    You obviously ignored and didn't read the ones I linked.

    I'm sorry, you're simply too stupid to take my time. You go with what you think it truthy you f**king moron, LOL.

  • ||

    The first link is not to the CDC. In fact, the CDC has their own website, so if there's a study out there by them, I'm sure it's on their own site, not on medicalnewstoday.com. The second link is a story on "The Hill," a website widely known for their deep delving into medical and societal issues. Oh, and that story uses the same info...the study by the highly motivated Guttmacher Institute.*

    Sorry, you disingenuous fuck. You are just lying through your teeth about these myriad studies on the issue that you can't even link to two different studies.

    Die in a fire, you fucking twat.

  • ||

    *by "highly motivated," I mean they are motivated to confirm the bias of their CEO and board that have been lobbyists for Plan B and other contraception companies.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    You just shot yourself, dammaze.

    Take your pro-government-school-only bullshit somewhere else.

  • pmains||

    Also, people with master's degrees do not automatically make more money. If I were to acquire a master's degree is Nuristani Literature, I don't think my boss would give me a raise. On the other hand, if I learned a new skill that is of value to the company, I can use that as a bargaining chip for a higher salary. Government is one of the few places where credentials are rewarded rather than ability.

  • ||

    "Government is one of the few places where credentials are rewarded rather than ability."

    BS. It may not be rational or right, but the private sectors rewards credentials like a Masters regardless of ability.

    Have you ever even worked with people? Are your educated superiors better than you at your job? All of them? No one just worthless and riding on an MBA?

  • pmains||

    Yes. I've worked at start-ups and large corporations.

    And you're evading the point.

  • ||

    And private companies always reward ability and never just degrees, right?

    Really?

  • pmains||

    Did I say always or never? Do you care or are you hoping to distort my argument enough that you "win?"

  • Michael Ejercito||

    BS. It may not be rational or right, but the private sectors rewards credentials like a Masters regardless of ability.


    Which private sectors?

  • ||

    Every company I ever worked for gave immediate raises for MBA's.

    I don't agree with it, but it is common.

  • Matt||

    That goes on in government too, only in the public sector there are institutional barriers to advancement for non-masters degree holders. The private sector may pay more on average to advanced degree holders, but it is more receptive to hiring those without advanced degrees than the public sector.

    If you don't believe me, look at the government's GS scales. That stuff is written in stone and there is often a hard requirement that someone HAS to have an advanced degree to advance. Even if a particular manager WANTS to hire someone with a bachelors only, the policy forbids them from doing so. That doesn't happen in the private sector nearly as much.

    Even in my industry, IT, private companies and contractors will constantly hire folks who don't even have a college degrees. They're looking for skills only. But in the government or in higher ed, you often have to have a bachelors degree. It gives you more credibility and you can justify your budget and salary more easily.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Incidentally, I have a masters degree from a top tier university and I have never gotten anything close to an "automatic raise" for it... and I make about a 3rd as much per year as my brother who has a bachelors degree from a midwestern state school.

    We do radically different things, have radically different career paths, and different employers... but his employer wouldn't spontaneously give more money to someone just because they had an extra degree. Ultimately it's about talent, success/track record, and most importantly demand for your skills within the limitations of your employer's profit margin.

    This idea that a masters degree instantly gets you more money is insane... unless you're a public school teacher, wher... that's exactly what happens, eveb if you are a moron and a shitty teacher.

    My mom has a masters and is a great teacher, btw... and yet many of my HS teachers growing up were godawful, and also had masters degrees. It's a pretty terrible thing to base salary on.

    All that said, I do think Michelle Fields got the notion of incentives wrong, particularly when talking to a high level actor like Damon. Money is assuredly not the driver for a guy like that. Instead, it is about creative fulfillment. Asking him if he works harder for a bigger paycheck is a particularly silly question to ask someone in the arts.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Preview.... remember to preview. Ugh.

  • ||

    Sure, credentialing is not a good way to either measure or predict performance, but neither is cronyism, favoritism, nepotism, and everything else that goes on in the private sector that leads to advancement? How to put an end to that?

  • ||

    "cronyism, favoritism, nepotism"

    I am trying to think of a field where that takes place all the time...it's right on the tip of my tongue...

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    True to an extent, but the 'hongry' Damon who did Good Will Hunting could probably relate.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Every company... hmm.

    Did they reward you for your sparkling personality?

  • ||

    Absolute BS - two guys who work for me just completed their MBA's and I am waiting to see if it affects their results before a raise is considered.

  • Nash||

    In the public sector, having a post graduate degree for a teacher in California guarantees a higher salary.

    In the private sector this is not always true.

  • cynical||

    "The fact remains that people with a Masters make much more money."

    So teachers make a lot of money? If so, Matt Damon is wrong, end of discussion, bye.

    Or are you saying that teachers don't make a lot of money for someone with a masters? If so, is it possibly because it's an open secret that ed degrees are worthless?

  • Amakudari||

    The fact remains that people with a Masters make much more money.

    Too stupid. They make more money because they're smarter or better workers, not because they have the degree. It's a filtering mechanism. There's absolutely no reason to believe, for example, that a person who spends two years in business school learns anything more than someone who spends that time working, but employers take it as the opportunity to choose among pre-selected people.

    It's the same reason that you don't really get a better education at an Ivy than a good state university, but graduates from the Ivies tend to make more.

    Master's of Education programs just happen to be entirely utilitarian, hardly selective exercises that enable teachers to get raises. To compare them to something like an MBA or an M.Eng is ridiculous.

  • Xenocles||

    "The fact remains that people with a Masters make much more money."

    Because all masters degrees are the same, right? Studying education has to be just as hard as studying electrical engineering or physics.

  • Xenocles||

    I should have read all the way down.

  • ||

    yes. it's a truism that ed majors etc. are amongst the lowest of the college grad minions

  • ||

    Numbers? Stats?

  • pmains||

    In the book I referenced. Try. Harder.

  • ||

    The one where Sowell argues sex ed causes pregnancy and abstinence ed doesn't?

    Did you read the book?

  • ||

    it's an opinion about a subjective thing. how can i provide #'s.

    but IMO (note), education is a major that does not require the same type of work that for example a bachelors in engineering etc. does

  • ||

    I'm an engineer, and yes, I had a harder major.

    my job also pays more and is 100 times easier and less BS.

  • pmains||

    Your job is easier. So what? Are you pushing Marxist labor theory of value, or are you just throwing out non sequiturs?

  • ||

    I'll just paste this here again:

    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless.

    If you have to lie or fudge numbers, you probably lost the argument.

    Teachers have bachelor degrees. over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.

    Now, compare their salary with other fields that require the same education.

    I like Reason, but this is a dishonest hack piece.

  • ||

    Please name the school system that gives a teacher TWENTY years (!) to complete a Masters degree. More likely, 3-5 yrs.

  • ||

    Sooooo, you're an engineer that has a job 100 times easier than a teacher and hangs out exclusively with MBA's and even has a guy riding his MBA and no skill over him.

    Boy, either you equate being an engineer to running the coin-op train ride in the front of a K Mart, or you are full of shit and can't keep your story straight.

  • ||

    An engineer doesn't work around MBAs?

    Seriously? You ever leave mom's basement?

  • ||

    I'm guessing sanitation engineer.

  • ||

    I'm telling you, he runs the coin-operated choo choo ride out in front of the K Mart. He figures, "Trains. Engineers run trains. I'll tell them I'm an engineer."

    This guy couldnt engineer a logical argument, that's for sure. Maybe that's why his job is "100 times easier" than a teacher's. His job is easy because it doesn't exist.

  • ||

    Where you work?

    Genuinely curious. I'm an electrical engineer. have you ever worked in the real world?

  • ||

    I work in the closest thing to a free market that exists in this country. I am an auctioneer.

  • Johnny||

    You operate a train?

  • ||

    There is a shortage of engineers not teachers..........

  • ||

    Not to interrupt the "debate" that the two of you seem to be having but I wanted to interject for a moment. In some areas of education, such as technology education, physics, gifted and talented, etc, there are a shortage of certified teachers. Additionally, at a nationally ranked engineering university (in which I attended and was witness to the circumstance) they employed education professors to work with soon-to-be-engineers because they found they were lacking problem solving skills imperitive to their success as future engineers.

  • MWG||

    Nor does a master degree in education require the same 'hurdles' to get into as say, an MBA.

  • ||

    LOL, what?

    They have been handing out MBA's like candy for 20 years. Every idiot I know has an MBA.

    I mean, they give them entirely online for godsake.

  • ||

    Sooooo, you're an engineer that has a job 100 times easier than a teacher and hangs out exclusively with MBA's and even has a guy riding his MBA and no skill over him.

    Boy, either you equate being an engineer to running the coin-op train ride in the front of a K Mart, or you are full of shit and can't keep your story straight.

  • MWG||

    "LOL, what?

    They have been handing out MBA's like candy for 20 years. Every idiot I know has an MBA.

    I mean, they give them entirely online for godsake."

    Yes, it's true. Any idiot can go online and get an MBA with little to no effort. Of course, if you want to get picked up by a legit employer, you're going to have to do a hell of a lot more than sit at a computer.

    A master's in education OTOH...

  • ||

    "Any idiot can go online and get an MBA with little to no effort. Of course, if you want to get picked up by a legit employer, you're going to have to do a hell of a lot more than sit at a computer"

    The online MBA's are as accredited as an MBA from a state business school.

    Again, you are wrong.

  • MWG||

    "The online MBA's are as accredited as an MBA from a state business school.

    Again, you are wrong."

    Yes, because all employers really care about is accreditation, right?

  • ||

    "The online MBA's are as accredited as an MBA from a state business school.

    Again, you are wrong."

    Which ones?

  • pmains||

    Johns Hopkins University's online programs include Computational Genomics. Not exactly fluff.

  • pmains||

    Sorry. I meant to say Bioinformatics.

  • ||

    Bioinformatics is the closest thing to fluff you can get in the sphere of biology.

  • ||

    But you won't get your bioengineering degree entirely online.

    An MBA you will.

  • pmains||

    Maybe not Bioengineering, but that's not the case for Bioinformatics, Computer Science, Environmental Planning and Management,
    Environmental Engineering and Science, or Systems Engineering at JHU.

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    While they don't yet offer a bioengineering degree, you can get degrees in Aerospace Engineering, Computational Science and Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering online from Georgia Tech. Last I checked, Georgia Tech is considered pretty legit in engineering circles.

  • MWG||

    Yea... I was thinking more along the lines of U. of Phoenix, but your point is well taken.

  • Amakudari||

    They have been handing out MBA's like candy for 20 years. Every idiot I know has an MBA.

    Christ that's disingenuous.

    Have you looked at the admission rates for top programs, which matter tremendously in terms of making the MBA investment?

    University of Phoenix MBA != Stanford GSB MBA

    I'm always a little bit amazed to find people who pay attention only to the last three letters.

  • ||

    Hm, just as they do with M. Eds.

  • ||

    Dunphy: Just like a history or English PhD requires different skills and aptitudes than a Chemistry PhD. Both require LOTS of work, but to say one is harder than the other is purely subjective. I couldn't imagine completing a chemistry PhD, but I can't imagine a chemistry student (the ones I know at least) being able to complete one in anthro or sociology or even economics, or any that requires a long and sustained effort in WRITING.

  • ||

    Not true from my experience. The humanities are generally wingable, but the sciences are almost never that way.

  • ||

    i agree and my undergrad was in philosophy.

  • yonemoto||

    you have no clue. I had to write a 12 page paper with three other authors (although I did the heavy lifting) that went through 70 revisions and contains multitudes of substantiated citations. Ultimately the thesis was a 100-page document (mine was on the short side) with a 30-page expository section detailing in full the history of biophysics, starting from the central dogma of biology, and concluding with a 20-page research proposal predicting where the field was going.

  • yonemoto||

    ...I can write circles around most humanities PhDs, though. I seriously kicked ass on the writing section of the MCATs, which I winged (needed an insurance policy in case the PhD job market was shit) - turns out doing a chemistry PhD really exercises those writing muscles.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    I don't know how much editing these guys' spelling required, but I did notice that guys like Feynman, Hawking, Einstein, et al. were/are fine writers.

  • ||

    Yeah, of course the scientists you've heard of are fine writers.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    This. Of course.

    Pay for teachers is defined by seniority and degree, and not on merit of performance. If you want to get paid more as a teacher, you don't need to be a better teacher, you just need to get another degree.

  • ||

    The problem is: what is merit in teaching? If it's the scores of two tests taken over a period of 4 or 6 days (of a 180 day school year) then it's bogus. Unfortunately, those who want to deny tenure and dole out merit pay support those very metrics. Not only is it not a good way to measure a teacher's or a kid's achievement, it's a recipe for educational failure because the year will be devoted to prepping for those very narrow tests.

  • Amakudari||

    Yes, the fairest way to determine merit is not test scores but simply whether parents want that teacher to teach their kids and are willing to pay for it.

    Similar to almost every other service on this planet.

  • ||

    Fascist!

  • Sean W. Malone||

    You are right that test scores alone are bad metrics for teacher success. But a basket of measurements would be useful.

    Scores, student/parent evaluations, administrative evaluations, independent evaluations, etc., all combined would undoubtedly be helpful.

    Also, more autonomy to teach using individualized methods would show better what works and what doesn't, unlike the top-down & highly controlled methods of teaching that teachers are stuck with today. There are plenty of ways to get good I formation about teacher success or failure that are objective.

    I taught swimming lessons as a kid, and then private music lessons for years (as well as group classes in college), and I had to be evaluated, and as a music teacher, had to be successful in generating improvements in my students or parents would simply fire me. It's not as difficult as you make it seem.

  • Sudden||

    Perhaps the reason they decide to pursue a masters is because they're incentivized to with automatic pay increases regardless if it actually produces any concrete gains in productivity. (and that luxurious three months off in the summer provides ample free time to engage such pursuits as well).

    In the real world, we recognize that there are opportunity costs to our time and money, and few guarantees that a masters in anything will actually result in a significant pay raise (or even employability).

  • Sean W. Malone||

    This. Of course.

    Pay for teachers is defined by seniority and degree, and not on merit of performance. If you want to get paid more as a teacher, you don't need to be a better teacher, you just need to get another degree.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    This. Of course.

    Pay for teachers is defined by seniority and degree, and not on merit of performance. If you want to get paid more as a teacher, you don't need to be a better teacher, you just need to get another degree.

  • ||

    How the fuck did you double post, but the times are backward?

    The squirrels are going crazy with all the Kos and Huffing and PuffingPost trolls out.

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    I'm sure all the hard science post-docs making similar wages and working 80 hour weeks to try and land a TT position who will be let go in 2 or 3 years are crying a river for the poor underpaid teachers. A degree doesn't entitle you to a six figure salary.

  • ||

    AGAIN, doesn't change the fact that people with Masters make more than those without, so you need to compare apples to apples.

    You get it? Pretty simple.

  • ||

    depends ON the masters.

    a BS in engineering makes more on average than a MA in literature or art history iirc.

  • yonemoto||

    a BS in biology makes more on average than a PhD in biology. True story. Got my job off craigslist and got a pay raise off my postdoc.

  • ||

    Most people with masters' degrees don't work from 8 to 3, get their summers off, have union protection that makes them almost impossible to fire, have perfunctory performance evaluations (if at all), and spend large portions of their day warehousing kids instead of teaching them. Those of us who went to public shool know how it works.

    By the way, I went to a fairly average college that had a large portion of Ed majors. Let me tell you, those people are morons. Bottom of the college barrel. I would sooner have my arm amputated than send one of my kids to public school. Most teachers are overpaid.

  • ||

    If you truly want to compare apples to apples, why are you arguing that teachers should get paid the same as other MBAs, without any thought to what those other MBAs do. Compare hours and skills and you will find that teachers deserve to be on the bottom of the MBA pay distribution.

  • ||

    Stop with your bone-headed contentions. If you are an electrical engineer, WTF do you know about what it takes to get a M.Ed.?

    I happen to know exactly what it takes. My daughter just finished up her M.Ed. degree. (yes, I know, imagine the shame)

    3/4 of her classwork for her B.Ed. was total bullshit, and it only got wierder when she started on her Masters. I used to proof her papers for her.

    What an incredible fucking load of make-work drivel!

  • ||

    If you are working 80 hour weeks with a hard science post doc, you need to go back to pumping gas. You failed.

  • MWG||

    You really are a lazy sonofabitch. Have you ever considered that there just might be people out there that want to work more than 9 months out of the year and not retire at age 55 with a govt. pension?

    You apparently hang out with a lot fo teachers.

  • ||

    LOL, ah, one of those morons who works harder than everyone. I love guys like you.

    Let me repeat so I'm not misunderstood.

    If you have a doctorate in hard science and worried about getting let go in 3 years working 80 hours and making a salary like a teacher, YOU ARE A COMPLETE FAILURE.

    Understand?

    I'm starting to picture you as a guy living off government checks.

  • MWG||

    "LOL, ah, one of those morons who works harder than everyone. I love guys like you."

    Actually, no I'm not.

    "If you have a doctorate in hard science and worried about getting let go in 3 years working 80 hours and making a salary like a teacher, YOU ARE A COMPLETE FAILURE."

    Way to move that goal post.

    "I'm starting to picture you as a guy living off government checks."

    Believe whatever you want. You're not looking any smarter.

  • ||

    I didn't move the goalposts. That was the original post I responded too. You might wanna read the thread before you chime in. Go back and look.

  • Ancapistan||

    living off government checks...

    exactly like teachers do.

  • Brian||

    Wait, are you suggesting that someone's work ethic is not directly tied to their salary and job security? Careful, you are starting to sound like an overpaid actor.

    On another point - you can't really compare salaries that include "summer earned income" and then also bring out the old "only work 9 months a year" canard. You either have to acknowledge that many teachers work all year or only judge them by their 9 month salary. You can't have it both ways.

  • ||

    Are you illiterate? One more time...

    If you have a doctorate in hard science and worried about getting let go in 3 years working 80 hours and making a salary like a teacher, YOU ARE A COMPLETE FAILURE.

    Read it. it is 100% true.

  • ||

    If you think this is a legitmate argument, you must have a Phd in education. Seriously, grow up.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Apparently, dammaze got a degree in Applied Arrogance.

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    Not at all. That's how the job market works. Pretty much every new PhD who wants to get a tenure track position at a major research university goes into a post-doc first to get more research experience. No one goes from grad school straight to a tenure track job at a top school unless they are once in a generation talents. You've got 2 or 3 years to build your CV and show the hiring committee that you are the best applicant out of the hundreds who apply for each tenure track position. You'd better be busting your ass.

  • ||

    If you have a PhD in hard sciences, you can go directly into the private sector and write your own ticket.

    Engineers, applied math, anything hard.

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    Yes, industry is a good back-up plan if you aren't able to land a tenure track job at a research university.

  • yonemoto||

    This is so far from the truth the ignorance is incredible. The gov't has subsidized PhD creation in an international dick-measuring clusterfuck and as a result it's virtually impossible to get a job in industry with a PhD. And companies know that PhDs are most likely shit (because the real talent is totally diluted by the degreed crap with a sense of entitlement) so every postdoc's wages are depressed.

  • yonemoto||

    you're a fucking idiot, dammaze. Those bacteria cultures don't give a shit that you want to be home, when they're ready, they're ready. And you need results yesterday! Or else the grant won't get in. And that other lab is about to scoop us, mostly because they are in China and falsifying their data.

    If you aren't working 80 hour weeks with a hard science post doc, you failed.

  • ||

    And they get their masters degrees solely for the purpose of getting a raise. That's their only reason for doing it.

    Now tell me what the average salary for a person with a liberal arts degree and a masters degree in fine arts or some other bullshit is in the private sector. I'd be willing to bet that teachers are ahead of the average, seeing as the world is full of bartenders with a BA and MA in Art History or some other useless piece of parchment.

  • ||

    AGAIN, doesn't change the fact that people with Masters make more than those without, so you need to compare apples to apples. Do you deny the numbers? Really?

    You get it? Pretty simple.

  • ||

    it;s not "apples to apples" because different masters degrees make VERY different average salaries.

    yes, a masters in lit and chemistry are both Masters degrees.

    but one type of graduate will tend to make far more than the other

    in brief, differences matter

    a MS in physics is also the kind of degree that requires FAR more ... how do i put this delicately... THOUGHT/BRAINPOWER etc. than a MA in education.

    anecdotally, (and i will concede its anecdotal), the MA holders in education i know (two school principals) will tell you it's a placeholder degree you get so you can try to move up from teacher to admin.

  • ||

    So it is dishonest to compare the income of teachers with masters to other workers with masters but ok for Nick to compare them to uneducated gas station attendants.

    Got it.

  • ||

    where did i make that assertion?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    You didn't, dunphy... he brought up the "go back to pumping gas" bullshit.

  • ||

    So it is dishonest to compare the income of teachers with masters to other workers with masters but ok for Nick to compare them to uneducated gas station attendants.

    Actually, you are right, that isn't fair to gas station attendants, you imbecilic turd. When I pay someone to pump my gas, do you have any idea of their success rate? 100%!! To date, I have yet to have them fail for which they are paid. Comparing them to public school teachers, who's failure rate is an absolute indication of their parasitical nature is to compare the productive to thieves.

    People such as yourself make me look forward to the coming American Cultural Revolution.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Reading over this thread... it's rather impressive how much you suck at this, dammaze.

    You keep saying we need to compare apples to apples and then you proceed to compare apples (masters degree in ed) with tricycles (masters in... chemistry, for instance).

    I have a masters of arts in music, and while I believe the literal education I received while getting that degree has been helpful to me, I am still in competition with a million other very talented people - some of whom have no degree at all - and again, I make far less than my brother, who has a bachelors in mechanical engineering.

    If you want to compare apples to apples, then quit generalizing so much and do it.

  • ||

    I'm not denying the numbers. They speak for themselves, but in the case of teachers, the reason people with MA's make more than the teachers with BA's is simple: the increase in pay is written into their collective bargaining agreement.

    Sad, they are automatically given more money simply because they got an advanced degree. In any private sector company I can think of, they would have to prove the value of that education to reap some financial reward. For PubSec employees, it's more like a prize than compensation for growing in skill and productivity.

  • ||

    Have you guys ever worked in the private sector?

    Companies have policies of pay increases for MBAs, ect.

    Again, I think it is stupid, but it is common.

  • ||

    boeing is a good example of automatic pay increases for Masters

  • ||

    Boeing is also a good example of a rent-seeking company that operates hand in glove with the government at the federal level.

    Try a truly private enterprise.

  • ||

    Boeing is one of the largest private companies in the world.

    You know, you really don't care about reality, do you?

  • pmains||

    You really don't care to address sloopy's point, do you?

  • ||

    i;'m giving an EXAMPLE.

    lighten up, francis

  • nah||

    I have never worked at a company with auto pay increases....

  • Robert||

    Or, in New York they get their masters in education just to keep their job. To teach in public schools in NY, with some picayune exceptions, you have to either have or be working on a master's degree in ed.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    Took Nick some time to figure out how to spin the numbers.

    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless.


    "Non educated"

    Let's tell accountants and computer programmers that an asshole said on a blog that they're "not educated."

    Teachers have bachelor degrees. over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.


    But not accountants, engineers or computer programmers, right?

    Who is being dishonest?

  • ||

    No, 60% of engineers, programmers, and accountants don't end up with Masters degrees.

    Show me the numbers.

  • pmains||

    So what if they have master's degrees? You're the one telling us that MBAs are handed out like candy. Are you saying that MBAs are overpaid or not? Should we reward credentials or performance?

  • ||

    I made on statement you keep avoiding.

    If you are comparing teachers salaries, a field where most end up with a masters, you have to compare them to other fields with equal education.

    Nick didn't do that. This piece is all spin.

    That's it. All I was saying. but all I get is TEACHERS!!! UNIONS!!!! AHHHHH!!!

    not rational.

  • BakedPenguin||

    If you're going to talk about "equal education", then maybe you'd like to address the point that's been made several times about Education degrees being easier to obtain than, say, Chemistry degrees.

  • ||

    One more time...

    What is more honest?

    Comparing teachers to uneducated workers, or workers with the same level of degree?

    If you don't understand this, you simply don't want to.

  • MAXXX||

    Comparing teachers to uneducated workers, or workers with the same level of degree?

    The fatal flaw in your argument is that teachers equate what they do to an unskilled position by claiming that all teachers are equally valuable, that it is impossible to measure the quality of their individual effort and that the only thing preventing their random termination is tenure.

    It's preposterous for a group of people to simultaneously claim that they are highly skilled professionals and at the same time completely valueless to their employer.

  • ||

    Dude, Nick's post compared them to say they MAKE MORE than the "uneducated" slobs you think aren't comparable. So your point is conceded -- teachers have more credentials than the janitors, so they make more money. But you want to establish that their salaries are still "shitty" because others with advanced degrees make even more. And it's been pointed out ad nauseum here that other advanced degrees are quite different, lead to different careers, and therefore pay more money.

    At this point it seems you have no point other than to spew invective.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    On top of the arrogance, he's all about the unions.

    Must be a Democrat.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    No, 60% of engineers, programmers, and accountants don't end up with Masters degrees.


    *slaps forehead*

    THIS is what you said, ASSHOLE:

    "Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless."

    Read what you write first.

  • Matt Damon||

    MATT DAMON!!! MATT DAMON!!!

  • ||

    Except that's now how economics works.

    There is one, true, great, invariant law for the whole of economics -- the Law of Prices.

    The Law of Prices holds that the winning bids of demand in the face of supply set the price.

    Because the barriers to entry to teaching are low, requiring little skill, and many enter the field, in the absence of unionism and licensure, the sheer number of teachers would bid down their wages.

    Yet, by putting up artificial barriers such as bogus masters in education and licensure, the number of those bidding for jobs to teach falls.

    Yet, because of unionism and collective bargaining, unionized public educators get paid above market wages. They are paid well beyond their mediocre skills and the demand for such.

  • ||

    Now, compare their salary with other fields that require the same education.

    How much do Masters in Art History make?

    How much do masters in Computer Science make?

    Wait did I just find evidence that some majors make more then other majors?

    Oh shit?!?! It is almost as if the market is determining the value of one type of education over another.

    "Spin the numbers" indeed.

    Apple and oranges are apples and oranges.

  • ||

    One more time...

    What is more honest?

    Comparing teachers to uneducated workers, or workers with the same level of degree?

    If you don't understand this, you simply don't want to.

  • ||

    Honesty might demand that you be honest about the comparison.

    It is, at worst comparing mixed education workers to teachers, or did they somehow manage to exclude the salaries of those of comparable or better education than teachers?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    Comparing teachers to uneducated workers, or workers with the same level of degree?


    Accountants, engineers and computer programmers are NOT uneducated workers, you stupid twit!

  • ||

    To anyone who is bashing teachers on any level: I'd like to see how long you'd last in a classroom. That the attrition rate is 3-5 yrs. is no accident despite summers off, despite 8-3 (or whatever you think it is), despite what a cake walk you think it is....Try it before you mouth off about it.

  • Huh? ||

    Reply fail?

  • ||

    Wow what an idiot. Not you, OM.

  • Apogee||

    That the attrition rate is 3-5 yrs. is no accident despite summers off, despite 8-3 (or whatever you think it is)

    Maybe that's because the entire system is set up for self-preservation instead of finding the best teaching method.

  • Matt Damon||

    MATT DAMMAZE!!! MATT DAMMAZE!!!

  • MAXXX||

    Now, compare their salary with other fields that require the same education.

    How much do Masters in Art History make?

    How much do masters in Computer Science make?

    Who gives a shit?

    The question is what value do they individually provide.

    When the answer is very little, it doesn't matter how many degrees or certificates they have.

  • ||

    Dumbest argument I've ever heard from the left, and shows your they're absolutely against any sort of results-based form of reality. Your value is not related to your education. Your value is related to your production.

  • ||

    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless.

    This, ladies and gentlemen, is the crux of the problem. We have a large percentage of people, perhaps a majority, that believe a degree makes one “educated” and by extension, the lack of a degree makes one “non-educated”.

    Teachers have bachelor degrees.


    So what. I know far too many people, including teachers, with bachelor’s degrees that are dumber then a bag of hammers. When I was in college “education” courses were referred to as “cake courses” as all you had to do was show up. The same was true for psychology and sociology courses with a few professors being the exception. I had a poli-sci professor start the first day of a course with the statistics of the grades handed out the previous semester by the different departments. Education lead the pack with something like 90% getting a 3.5 or better and none below 3.0. The poli-sci professor then asked the class if we thought the students taking “education” courses were all A students. There was a lot of snickering because everybody knew the “education” majors were not the brightest bulbs on the tree. Toilet paper degree was what we referred to when talking about “education” majors.

    over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.


    In New York State all teachers have 2 years to get a master’s to continue teaching. It is essentially a rite of passage as almost no one fails to achieve that goal. We have teachers all the time flaunting their “masters” as proof of competency when in reality the proof should be the results. I view that flaunting as a distraction to the fact that the results are dismal. In fact, my son almost didn’t graduate high school due to his math grades. I had to un-teach the whole language nonsense the school was pushing when my kids were in elementary school so they could learn to read. A lawyer friend of mine who started out as a teacher (got out because he couldn’t take the stupidity) described it as a bunch of people that jump from one fad to the next. Never questioning if the current fad worked or made any sense at all.

    My son, who almost didn’t graduate from high school because of math is now in his 4th year as a math major in a well respected program. By the end of this year he will not only have a bachelors degree, he will also have completed all the requirements for his masters. He essentially educated himself after high school to make up for the pathetic job the school did. And before you go down this path, the high school my son went to was rated pretty much average for the state.

    And another thing. A PHD in physics will not get you a job teaching physics in a NYS public school but a degree in psychology and education (and passing a pathetically easy ‘competency test’) will. Anybody that believes a degree guarantees you will be educated and lack of one dooms you to be “non-educated” is a fool.

  • ||

    Thank you for communicating exactly what I was attempting to, albeit quickly, assert above. Schooling (attending classes K-12) does not equate to an education, or being successful in any market.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    +100

  • ||

    Today I learned that an electrical engineering degree is the SAME education as a teaching degree.
    I was an education major in college. It was a fucking joke.
    I would guess that a chemistry major might have been more complex?

  • Dudebro||

    lol sure he wouldn't mind paying for it because acting doesn't involve physically demanding things beyond jumping around and moving facial muscles.

  • MATT DAMON||

    MATT DAMON!

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Shitty salaries?

    Apparently, Damon doesn't know shit from breakfast. No surprise there.

  • ||

    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless.

    If you have to lie or fudge numbers, you probably lost the argument.

    Teachers have bachelor degrees. over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.

    Now, compare their salary with other fields that require the same education.

    I like Reason, but this is a dishonest hack piece.

  • ||

    Blah, blah, masters degree, blah, blah.

    Requiring a masters degree, in order to teach children things that everyone was supposed to learn by age 18, is stupid. A person with a four year degree in computer programming, or engineering, has to learn higher level math than a high school math teacher does. Yet, that same programmer, or engineer, isn't qualified to teach high school kids algebra.

    I know, they have to learn how to "teach" children but is it really that complicated?

  • ||

    "Blah, blah, masters degree, blah, blah."

    You're an idiot.

    Now, again, regardless of what you think, people with Masters degrees make a lot more money than those without. So comparing their salaries to people without degrees is dishonest.

    You understand now?

  • despindle||

    Persons with Masters degrees make a lot more than those without -- if they get a job that requires a Masters degree, which teaching does not. If you have a Masters degree and you get a job as a Wal-Mart greeter, you are still going to make $8 an hour.

  • ||

    "which teaching does not. "

    Teachers are indeed required to get Masters degrees in a time frame. State by state laws very, but you are wrong.

  • despindle||

    It could be a requirement in some districts, but that doesn't make it inherently necessary or valuable. Studies have shown that there is no statistical difference in the performance of teachers with masters or without masters. Since it adds no value it should not be compensated for.

    The only reason teachers get masters is because the pay chart gives them a guaranteed raise if they get one and it doesn't matter if that degree is from Phoenix Online or Harvard or if it has anything to do with what they are teaching, so most go the paper mill route and obtain useless degrees.

  • ||

    Again, none of this changes the fact that you need to compare teachers salaries to the salaries of those with equal education.

    Why can't you people just admit this? I mean, facts really aren't important here, are they?

  • ||

    Again, none of this changes the fact that you need to compare teachers salaries to the salaries of those with equal education.


    I know plenty of people without degrees that are far more educated than most of the teachers I know.

  • Jack||

    Why don't people ever link to the studies? I can make up anything and say "studies have shown" before it. I expect more from people claiming to love "reason."

    As for your second point: I'm a teacher. I got a Masters degree because I care about what I teach. I did not take any pay raise because of the poor financial position of my school. The problem with making sweeping statements like "the only reason" is that it takes just one person to disprove it. So now we know there are at least two reasons. I am willing to bet there are more out there.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    Teachers are indeed required to get Masters degrees in a time frame.


    Bullshit.

    "States Requiring Continuing Education
    Most states do not require their public school teachers to receive a master's degree at any time, but most do require that they continue their education. Often, this can lead to the teacher fulfilling the requirements for a master's degree. For this reasons, in states such as Minnesota, a majority of teacher's hold a master's degree, although it not required.

    States Requiring a Master's Degree to Teach Certain Subjects
    While K-12 teachers are usually not required to receive a master's degree, specialized teachers often are. For instance, most states require that special education teachers hold a master's degree before they can teach disabled students. Similarly, school counselors are often required to hold a master's degree in psychology or social work before seeing students."

    They are NOT required to get a Master's degree, unless they're specialized or only in three states (NY, Massachusets, Ohio.)

  • ||

    All states have a continuing education requirement, which basically means work towards another bachelor or a masters.

    NCLB even requires it. Also, if you want to keep getting raises, you will need a masters, as your pay is based on it. This is why so many teachers end up with it.

    Now, I don't agree with the system, but it is what it is.

  • ||

    At least you finally got around to acknowledging that their pay is based on the level of education they attain, while the level their students attain has no bearing whatsoever on it.

  • ||

    Show me where I stated otherwise?

    I'll wait.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    All states have a continuing education requirement, which basically means work towards another bachelor or a masters.


    You just contradicted yourself:

    "Teachers are indeed required to get Master[']s degrees in a time frame."

    By the way, I have an MBA in Finance. And I get paid because of my productivity, not because I just happen to have a master's degree.

  • ||

    Non sequitor. The fact that state education systems require a Masters does not mean that a Masters is necessary to perform the job. Cognitive dissonance much?

  • ||

    HURRRRRRRR MASTERS DEGREES HURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. MATT. DAMON.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    HURRRRRRRR MASTERS DEGREES HURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. MATT. DAMON.

    That's the most eloquent argument you've made all night.

  • ||

    Now, again, regardless of what you think, people with Masters degrees make a lot more money than those without.

    I hear this argument a lot, but I've yet to see it supported with facts. Tell me, in a field where credentialism isn't sacrosanct, how much more does a MS make than a BS? Does the average software engineer make more because he has a masters? Does an accountant? Or a salesman?

    These are fields where education is important, because it is specialized. Someone getting an advanced degree so they can teach 7 year olds how to multiply and identify states is the biggest crock of shit I've ever heard. Does any sensible person really believe it takes 6-7 years of college to do that with a level of proficiency? Well, anyone who believes that should probably check out my website where I sell prime beachfront real estate in Oklahoma, because you will believe anything you are told.

    Oh, that, and out children are becoming stupider by the year, so whatever we are paying them is too much, since they are failing miserably at the basic component of their job: educating children.

  • ||

    In Mass. under the quinn bill iirc civil service agencies paid 10% for bachelors and 15% for masters degrees.

    needless to say the cops who got degrees AFTER they signed on tended to get cheezy degrees from diploma mills

  • despindle||

    Exactly, the same happens in teaching. You get the pay raise whether you have a degree from Harvard or BuyYourDegreeOnline.com. A Masters is not necessary to do the job and adds no value so there should be no additional compensation for it.

  • ||

    imo, cops with BA/BS's are on average better cops. FBILEJ supports that

    however... those studies were done pre quinn bill

    it;s entirely possible that ofc's who seek advanced degrees post-employ from a diploma mill won't have the same preferable qualities seen from those who sought employ when they already had the BA

    iow, correlation/causation are an issue.

  • ||

    ^^^ THIS ^^^

    Someone getting an advanced degree so they can teach 7 year olds how to multiply and identify states is the biggest crock of shit I've ever heard.
  • ||

    You are REALLY denying people with masters don't make more than less educated? REALLY?

    You want numbers?

    "Oh, that, and out children are becoming stupider by the year, so whatever we are paying them is too much, since they are failing miserably at the basic component of their job: educating children."

    I got a great education in a rather poor public school system. If you didn't or your kids didn't, you need to look in the mirror. And THAT is why teaching sucks. They get all the blame when you're a moron or you don't make your kids learn.

    Parents are getting more worthless every year. Hence, their kids get less educated.

  • Mr Whipple||

    In NJ, teachers and other state workers were getting advanced degrees from non-accredited colleges and getting the raise, anyway.

  • ||

    Address the specific fields I identified. I'm saying getting advanced degrees does not guarantee more income within some fields, and I believe education should be one of those fields, as I no not see the need for a postgraduate degree when one is teaching state capitals and multiplication.

    Well, maybe there is a benefit, but there should be no additional compensation just handed out for it lime candy. That should be reserved for those teachers whose students actuals learn.

  • Trespassers W||

    They get all the blame when you're a moron or you don't make your kids learn.

    That argument cuts both ways. They can't be both critical to the educational process AND not at fault if the educational process fails.

  • Alex||

    dammaze|8.2.11 @ 9:21PM|#

    I got a great education in a rather poor public school system.
    ==========================

    Soooo, you're arguing we should slash funding, and make schools "rather poor," as you received a great education in a "rather poor" school? Cool!

  • ||

    Like anything, it depends on the profession. A persons salary should be based on their value, not their level of education.

    Teaching a child isn't rocket science, which is why an aerospace engineer with a bachelors degree gets paid more than a teacher with a masters degree.

  • ||

    +100000000

  • Mr Whipple||

    Fucking-A right. All value is subjective based on the principle of diminishing marginal utility. Liberal union douchebags are stuck on stupid LTV.

  • ||

    Teaching a child isn't rocket science, which is why an aerospace engineer with a bachelors degree gets paid more than a teacher with a masters degree.


    In the town I live in there is a university that is primarily an engineering school. By the end of the first year half the students that entered as engineering students are done. Gone. Off to something easier. The value of a degree depends a great deal on the intelligence and effort required to get it. I have no doubt that getting a masters in education is far easier than making it through the first 2 years of engineering school.

    Another story of my frustration with the public education system. My son’s first high school science lab was certainly educational for me. The fad of the day for the teachers was everybody needs to “write in complete sentences” because in the “real world” they will have to. So my son comes home with his first lab and it has a big fat zero. Doesn’t seem to matter that he got all the right answers, he didn’t answer in complete sentences like he would have to in “the real world”. It also didn’t matter that the space on the paper for the first question was only big enough for 1 or 2 words. So I tell my son I will call the teacher.

    I get on the phone and tell the teacher I don’t understand how he could get all the right answers and get a zero. The teacher proceeds to repeat the “write in complete sentences” like they would have to do “in the real world” mantra. I proceed to point out that the first question on the lab only has enough space for one or two words and there is clearly not enough room for a sentence. The teacher agrees and says that a couple of words would be fine for that question but drones on about complete sentences “in the real world”. I ask the teacher if he knows what I do for a living. He of course says he doesn’t know. So I tell him I design high precision industrial measurement instrumentation. I tell him that we are required to document all design work in a notebook. I ask him if he thinks “in the real world” if my supervisor is more concerned with getting the right answers or writing in complete sentences. He is a bit taken back at this point but realizes of course that the right answers are more important. I inform this teacher that my notes are not always in complete sentences and, for example, bullet points can convey the information in a more condensed and efficient manner. That the purpose of the notebook is to document what I had done so another engineer could look at it without having to read the equivalent of “War and Peace”. I inform the teacher that communicating what I had done in an efficient and easy to understand way was not always best served by writing everything in “complete sentences”. The next thing out of the teachers mouth was “have your son bring the lab back in and I will regrade it.

    Through one of my jobs I was exposed to at least a couple of dozen school administrators. What most people don’t seem to realize is that the administrators are just teachers with more toilet paper degrees. By far the sharpest superintendent I met had gotten his bachelors in physical education. Fancy that. This superintendent had an unwritten rule (unwritten because it would have been illegal) to hire teachers that had spent at least 5 years in the private sector, aka “the real world”. The difference between his school and the ones in the surrounding area was quite stark. This brings me back to the poor science teacher that gave my son a zero. The vast majority of teachers have spent their entire life in a classroom only changing positions relative to the teachers desk. A fundamental problem with the public schools is the teachers are suppose to prepare the kids for “the real world” when they themselves have never ventured beyond the confines of a classroom into “the real world”.

    Experience is the greatest teacher of all. You cannot get experience in a classroom yet it is the most valuable education you will get. Nobody hires a kid fresh out of engineering school for critical parts of a project because they lack the most important part of an education, experience. If I wanted to build a bridge I would take the engineer with a BS and 20 years of experience over a PHD who had never designed and built a bridge.

    Recently I had to deal with a product by a startup company designed by a professor - PHD (from a premier engineering school everybody would recognize) who had never brought a product to market. In a word the product was atrocious. The mistakes that were made were ones an engineer with a BS and experience would never have made. The professor, in spite of his credentials, lacked a critical part of the education needed to be a good engineer, experience.

    We now have a society of credentialed idiots that want to tell us how to make energy but have no experience in the energy producing sector. Credentialed idiots that want to tell people how to run a business when they themselves have no experience running a business. The list goes on.

  • ||

    ^^^^This^^^^
    my father worked at a local technical school. the principal there was caught getting his next degree on school time. this from a man who could not pronounce technical...
    heard at graduation:
    Welcome Ladies and Gentlemen to graduation at Bucks County Ten-ni-cal School

  • dammaze's parrot||

    Masters
    Masters

    [squawk[

  • ||

    To do it well? Yes. It is that complicated. Plenty of scholars with lengthy CVs can't teach for shit.

  • ||

    I agree with dammaze. Reason is going to make a "big thing" out of this because they came off badly in the interview. The cameraman and his "10%" reasoning was just silly. This is one of the first times I've seen Reason on major sites and it's too bad. (I am a subscriber)

  • Restoras||

    Ever work in the private sector? I don't think it's unusual at all to cut the bottom performers every year.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Teachers have bachelor degrees. over 60% of teachers end up with masters by 20 years.


    And a masters in engineering is equivalent to a masters in literature, right ?

  • ||

    Once more, I'll go slow....

    If you are going to claim teachers are overpaid, then you need to compare them to groups with equal education, not people with no education. It is dishonest.

    This is pretty simple, so I'm just going to assume you don't want to understand it.

  • ||

    You're oh so wrong and don't get at all how markets and economics works.

  • ||

    Maybe he's right. So from now on, I will compare teachers to people with similar levels of education.

    And since a MA in Literature is a similar education level to the six week course they give the new hires in my local parks department, I can still conclude that they are wildly overpaid.

  • ||

    address this:

    Once more, I'll go slow....

    If you are going to claim teachers are overpaid, then you need to compare them to groups with equal education, not people with no education. It is dishonest.

    This is pretty simple, so I'm just going to assume you don't want to understand it

    How is it wrong?

  • Matt||

    Education != Income
    Education != Intelligence
    Education != Production
    Education != Benefit to society

    Education = sucking professors' dicks

  • Matt||

    American higher education is a system of dominance and submission, with tenured professors exploiting the cheap (and sometimes free) labor of grad students and TAs. The cycle continues ad infinitum.

    At least in the military (with all of its horrific attributes) if you suck at leading troops you get discharged (honorably or dishonorably).

  • Matt||

    Even at the highest levels, "education" in America often consists of arbitrary regurgitation of facts, or just doing whatever it takes to impress the high ranking profs or department heads who are the gatekeepers to the next step, no matter how arbitrary or petty. It is not always a measure of intelligence or in any way a vocational prep.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Man I am really getting tired of this dumbass repeating himself. A degree doesn't prove that a person is actually "educated" and it sure as hell doesn't guarantee that a person has a particular set of skills.

    No one I have read yet on this thread compares teacher salaries with the "uneducated", only perhaps with those who have fewer degrees. That isn't an equal or interchangeable idea though.

    Likewise, the economics fail here is staggering.

  • cynical||

    But Sean, you have to compare similar degrees. You HAVE to. Because I said so. I can't explain why that is necessary or important, but you must.

  • ||

    Except that's now how economics works.

    There is one, true, great, invariant law for the whole of economics -- the Law of Prices.

    The Law of Prices holds that the winning bids of demand in the face of supply set the price.

    Because the barriers to entry to teaching are low, requiring little skill, and many enter the field, in the absence of unionism and licensure, the sheer number of teachers would bid down their wages.

    Yet, by putting up artificial barriers such as bogus masters in education and licensure, the number of those bidding for jobs to teach falls.

    Yet, because of unionism and collective bargaining, unionized public educators get paid above market wages. They are paid well beyond their mediocre skills and the demand for such.

  • Matt Dammaze||

    MATT DAMMAZE!!! MATT DAMMAZE!!!

  • ||

    i will never complain that cops make a shitty salary. at least not where i work (some areas they do).

    we are paid very well.

    great benefits too

  • ||

    and no ,... "benefits" do not include beating people to death...

  • Sudden||

    perps, perks... potato, potauto.

  • ||

    ^whee!

  • Sudden||

    Just messing w ya dunphy. If I was ever getting stopped on suspicion of something, I sure hope its by someone like you or that oceanside PD guy.

  • ||

    i feel you, man!

  • PJR79||

    "Maybe you're a shitty cameraman." Not so good at being put on the spot, this super sleuth.

  • ||

    "Not so good at being put on the spot, this super sleuth."

    Put on the spot? The cameraman pulled some stupid number out of his a**. What kind of answer do you expect?

  • sunny black||

    Yeah, you tell 'em dammaze. Because if a camerman is shitty at what he does he can always be put in a rubber room, right?

  • ||

    The interviewers assertion and the cameraman's question was completely absurd.

  • Matt Dammaze||

    MATT DAMMAZE!!! MATT DAMMAZE!!!

  • ||

    Damon won that exchange easily. Tell your cameraman witty repartee isn't his strong point.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Yeah, by Damon's logic people are really passionate about working in call centers. Talk about a winning argument!

  • Mr Whipple||

    IIRC, in NJ, the average salary for public school teachers is about $62,000, and the top bracket is about $95,000. It's the starting salary that's a little low, at about $32,000, but WTF do want for a starting salary? Plus full benefits for life, for only 9 months a year work.

  • ignorance is bliss||

    Funny that people like you think they know everything, but really dont have a clue about the education system works.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Go fuck yourself, asshole

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    How is he wrong?

  • Mr Whipple||

    What I do know, douchebag, is that 35 years ago, residents of NJ were told that we needed an income tax to help fund the failing school districts. Today, we still have the income tax, and casinos whose revenues were supposed to eliminate the income tax, and we have 31 failing school districts, but assholes like you say we need to pump $1 billion into the school system. In NJ, we spend over $7 billion, just in state aid for K-12, and that doesn't include all of the money that the local districts provide from property taxes or funding for preschool or special ed.

    Funny that people like you think you have the right to steal from citizens and then provide a half-assed product.

    And if you want to know what the real salaries are of every teacher in NJ, they are all listed here:

    http://php.courierpostonline.c.....e/edstaff/

    Have fun, asshole

  • ||

    So you're some worthless moron who makes less than a teacher and it angers you.

  • ||

    Dammaze, that is possibly your most coherent and sound argument today. And it was still just an Ad Hom attack.

    Fail

  • Mr Whipple||

    You don't know how much money I make. That makes you the moron for making a baseless assumption.

    What I am is a taxpayer that has to pay to send his kids to a private school so they can get a decent education. That's what angers me, fuckwad.

  • Matt Dammaze||

    MATT DAMMAZE!!! MATT DAMMAZE!!!

  • Dumbass||

    you're just some teacher who makes less than millionaires and it angers you, huh?

  • ||

    Alright, we got another chick on staff.

  • Sudden||

    Eh, she didn't exactly knock it out of the park on this. I'd much prefer Gillespie's incisive wit in these gatherings.

  • MWG||

    Agreed. There was plenty of stupid in that video, but Gillespie would have done a better job than the 'intern'.

  • despindle||

    Ya but shes a million times hotter than Nick.

  • Joeyjojojrshabadoo||

    Don't talk like that about the Jacket

  • ||

    but what if she was wearing "The Jacket"?

  • ||

    Nicks wit was a learned skill.

    Hell it was only last November we had to suffer through his Halloween in 3d stuff.

    Also there is plenty of older stuff that Nick blew terribly.

    Give the girl a chance she is learning.

  • ||

    I refuse to believe that until she threatens a guest panelist with a pen-stabbing.

  • kbolino||

    The "average salary for a teacher" hides a disturbing fact about teaching: yeah, teachers "on average" might get paid $55k, but a first-year teacher will make more like $30k, and a thirty-year veteran will make more like $80k.

    I'm not supporting Matt Damon's position, but I think it is dishonest to say that because teachers' average salaries are $55k, all teachers are paid well.

    The reality is: tenured teachers are paid well, but new teachers are paid crap, which skews the average.

    I know that veterancy is important in any profession, but in teaching there is a very strong correlation between veterancy and pay, and a very weak correlation (if any at all) between quality and pay.

    This discourages well qualified potentials from entering the teaching profession: sure, it has safety in the long run, but there is no incentive to start teaching, especially if you're qualified enough to do something else.

    Not that Matt Damon et al. are smart enough or brave enough to tackle the real cause (teachers' unions).

  • ||

    Teachers's unions are why pay is so low?

  • ||

    i think his point is that unions are why pay is related to time on, not competency

  • ||

    You don't think the union raises wages?

  • Jingles||

    Oh, they do. But they do so based on time on the job, not competence. Those two factors don't necessarily correlate.

  • ||

    it wasn't my comment, but in brief, i think unions tend to advocate for "lowest common denominator"'ism.

    they do raise average salaries, but they also fight merit pay, and generally fight any pay recognition for superlative performance.

    god knows it's true with police unions.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    If they can't convince (read: manipulate) the taxpayers into approving higher salaries, what fucking good is the union, then? Because from seeing how many young teachers get whacked in favor of the old farts and administrators when budget cuts come around, it's sure not job security.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: kbolino,

    The reality is: tenured teachers are paid well, but new teachers are paid crap,


    Don't work as a teacher. A teacher gets paid EXACTLY what he or she wants to receive, otherwise he or she would be doing something else.

    YOUR value-judgment on someone else's pay is irrelevant, unless you presume to read minds.

  • ||

    "A teacher gets paid EXACTLY what he or she wants to receive, otherwise he or she would be doing something else."

    That's literally one of the dumbest things I've ever seen posted on the internet.

  • ||

    You have no idea what that means? And you call someone else stupid?

    If someone working as a teacher is dissatisfied with the salary they receive teaching, and want to make a higher salary, then they would be in a different line of work that paid more.

    Here endeth the lesson.

  • Chupacabra||

    Then you're one of the dumbest trolls on the interwebz.

  • sunny black||

    Literally??

    Yours is literally one of the most off-the-charts hyperbolic comments I've ever seen posted in the galaxy.

  • ||

    lol. i saw what you did there!

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    That's literally one of the dumbest things I've ever seen posted on the internet.


    Before you start acting like an ass, could you at least try to refute the argument, numbskull?

  • ||

    My hometown is full of working poor people digging coal and working in potteries for 10$ an hour.

    They must love it or they'd just go become doctors and make more money.

    Libertarians are a lot like communists. Their BS just doesn't apply in the real world.

  • ||

    And what have they done to increase their market value? Have they invested in themselves or do you just expect buckets of cash to be handed to them for just being that fucking awesome?

  • MWG||

    "My hometown is full of working poor people digging coal and working in potteries for 10$ an hour.

    They must love it or they'd just go become doctors and make more money."

    Except that when someone decides to become a teacher they usually have at least 4 years to find out how much it pays.

  • ||

    Sure, I know very few people that go into teaching for money.

    That is my point, people don't go to work just for money. They do what they like/can/want to do.

  • ||

    Seems like most of them go into it for the summers off.

  • ||

    They may not love it, but they accept it. Nothing is stopping them from investing in themselves, and increasing their skill set. Nothing, that is, except for a lack of will.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    They may not love it, but they accept it. Nothing is stopping them from investing in themselves, and increasing their skill set. Nothing, that is, except for a lack of will.


    It also takes money in many cases.

  • ||

    It also takes money in many cases.

    There is no lack of money for anyone who wants it. The gummint will shovel it at you until you say stop.

    Either you want a better job and (presumably) a better life, or you don't.

  • ||

    "The gummint will shovel it at you until you say stop."

    Not true. You guys ever leave the basement?

  • ||

    Not true.

    Well then, I'm persuaded.

    http://federalstudentaid.ed.go.....index.html

    Gosh, that took about 3 seconds to find. I'm off to get an iced tea to cool off from all that hard work.

    http://studentaid.ed.gov/PORTA...../index.jsp

    Oh my! Another 4 seconds. I may have to collapse on the davenport to recover.

  • ||

  • ||

    It also takes money in many cases.

    Yup. If someone is so dissatisfied with their current profession, they may have to (gasp!) save up the necessary money needed to pay for school.

    The cost of a community college is reasonable, and student loans are easy to come by.

  • ||

    Their isn't one of them that doesn't work 50 times harder than you, I assure you.

    To say a person is happy with a salary or would find a better job is something a completely clueless "on paper" economist would say.

  • ||

    Jesus Christ. Now you're gonna use the "dey werk harder then yew" argument? By your twisted fucked up logic, ditch diggers should make more than bankers because they "work harder."

    You're so fucking clueless as to the laws of supply and demand, and utility that it's laughable. Effort != increased compensation.

    I also hope those people work harder than me. I'm damn good at what I do, therefore I don't have to work hard at it. People beg meto work for them because I make them a lot of money in return. Skill trumps labor in what I do, and in most of the private sector that can also be said.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Coal miners have masters degrees? Since when?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    My hometown is full of working poor people digging coal and working in potteries for 10$ an hour.


    And? How is that supposed to be a refutation?

    If they get $10.00 an hour is because that is how productive they are, no more.

    They must love it or they'd just go become doctors and make more money.


    They would just need to work in Walmart and make more money. Gosh, are you an idiot - and an asshole: You just said the folks you know are too stupid to become doctors.

    Libertarians are a lot like communists. Their BS just doesn't apply in the real world.


    The delusion lies on someone else, numbskull.

  • ||

    "They would just need to work in Walmart and make more money. "

    Walmart pays far less than 10 in my area. Get out more.

    "You just said the folks you know are too stupid to become doctors."

    They are. Most people are.

    "The delusion lies on someone else, numbskull."

    This thread is like a testimony to your complete cluelessness. Are you the king libertarian?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: dammaze,

    Walmart pays far less than 10 in my area. Get out more.


    You mean a coal digger or pottery maker cannot make more than $10.00 at Walmart?

    Maybe you are having a difficulty detecting irony, dammaze. A person making $10.00 for coal digging is getting a good deal. It is your own prejudices that make you see otherwise.


    They are. Most people are.


    Explains why you're not a doctor... Hmmm.

    This thread is like a testimony to your complete cluelessness. Are you the king libertarian?


    No, I know economics and you don't. That is why I am having fun with you.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    No, dammaze, they don't have to "love it", but you can be virtually certain that their $10 an hour for rough jobs like digging coal is preferrable to them than their other available options.

    More options, and thus more opportunity to I prove one's standard of living by replacing poorer quality conditions with better ones (I.e. getting a higher paying & safer job), requires a person to learn new skills. Fortunately, this is almost always possible.... even if we're not talking a huge jump, a mine worker can always become a mine foreman with work, dedication and training and by demonstrating productivity.

    The point is never that a person's job necessarily reflects their first choice out of infinite options, but rather it reflects their first choice out of *available* options.

    Who's ignoring reality again?

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    My hometown is full of working poor people digging coal and working in potteries for 10$ an hour.

    Were you born a poor black man, too?

  • ||

    He could sure use a primer in the difference between shit and shinola.

  • Matt Dammaze||

    MATT DAMMAZE!!! MATT DAMMAZE!!!

  • Matt Damon||

    STOP SPOOFING MATT DAMON!!!

  • ||

    That's literally one of the dumbest things I've ever seen posted on the internet.

    The truth is often unintelligible to the insane.

  • cynical||

    Not really fair, since the government takes each middle class family's education money, and then forces the ones that can't pay for education twice into government schools. Tends to skew the market a bit.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Show me any profession where someone with no experience is paid well.

  • ||

    Police, firemen, city sanitation workers, TSA feeler-uppers, corrections officers, teachers and prostitutes.

    And only one of those groups isn't unionized and working in the public sector. Sadly (or not, depending on your perspective), that group is also the hardest working.

  • ||

    Police, firemen, city sanitation workers, TSA feeler-uppers, corrections officers, teachers and prostitutes.

    And only one of those groups isn't unionized and working in the public sector. Sadly (or not, depending on your perspective), that group is also the hardest working.

  • Terr||

    New-grad engineers can make a good amount of money in the oil and gas industry. A buddy of mine graduated with an offer of $85k/yr. I'm an engineer in aviation and started out at a pretty damn good salary too. Granted, both of us had more hands-on experience than a typical new-grad engineer.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Yeah but I would venture a guess that those positions are few and far between. Teachers are a dime a dozen.

  • Byron||

    POTUS?

  • Sudden||

    Being engaged to a teacher, one of the things that strikes me is how, often times, the correlation between veterancy and competence in negative.

    Moreover, dumb fucking union rules provide a massive disservice to students if class size is important (I'd argue its overstated in importance and it's returns diminishing). When budget cuts rear their ugly heads, a district will have to fire 10 bright eyed, passionate young teachers that kids respond to and relate with, instead of shit canning 3 old hags that no kid respects or learns a damn thing from and make a shit ton more.

  • ||

    I know that veterancy is important in any profession...

    That perception is a big part of the problem with PubSec workers. Veterancy is among the least important factors in any profession that lacks unions. Competency trumps all, followed up by teamwork, leadership and then veterancy.

    I have not once worked for an employer that wasn't more concerned with how well I did my job than he was with how long I had done it. The proof was in how large a ROI he got out of me, not hom many candles he could put in my anniversary cake. With PubSec employees, the opposite seems true nearly without exception. And that's why you see four grown men standing on the side of the road holding weed eaters while one guy cuts an acre in 8 hours, yet will see two guys working for a private lanscaper cut the same amount of grass, clip the hedges and bag it all in 45 minutes.

  • ||

    I know that veterancy is important in any profession...

    That perception is a big part of the problem with PubSec workers. Veterancy is among the least important factors in any profession that lacks unions. Competency trumps all, followed up by teamwork, leadership and then veterancy.

    I have not once worked for an employer that wasn't more concerned with how well I did my job than he was with how long I had done it. The proof was in how large a ROI he got out of me, not hom many candles he could put in my anniversary cake. With PubSec employees, the opposite seems true nearly without exception. And that's why you see four grown men standing on the side of the road holding weed eaters while one guy cuts an acre in 8 hours, yet will see two guys working for a private lanscaper cut the same amount of grass, clip the hedges and bag it all in 45 minutes.

  • ||

    " Veterancy is among the least important factors in any profession that lacks unions."

    Complete bullsh**.

  • Old Mexican||

    Oh, nice argument there, idiot.

    Please, don't feed this troll.

  • ||

    I'm not sure this one is an actual troll. Just very, very limited in vision and life experience. My bet is college freshmen, the cost of which mommy and daddy are paying for.

  • Rock Action ||

    I have no idea, but this is on Yahoo's home page, and you might be getting people who just want to pick a fight and yell because the interview is becoming a news story. His name, if you say it, also sounds suspiciously like "dumb ass."

    Cheerio.

  • ||

    dammaze is just calling people on some lazy arguing. Of course it doesn't help that he's lazy in the way he does it.

    Question is, why put stacks of effort referencing a largely pointless post on a message board?

    Especially when earlier dunphy argued something as a truism and then when challenged asks how can s/he provide #s on an opinion on something subjective. Might be just me but isn't that a fair way from clearly self-evident.

    Let's just agree that whatever the case entertainers are totally overpaid and the opinions receive far too much airtime.

    One last thing though. I think the key difference dammaze and Old Mexican have is their belief in the relative worth of teachers. If you had to place teaching on a spectrum of 'usefulness to society' you'd have the profession in completely different positions. That's the underlying argument you should be having.

  • ||

    there is opinion and there is fact. imo, a masters in education is not nearly as rigorous as one in physics

    i admit i am biased in that i tutored physics in college

  • cynical||

    I think OM is right, just a smarmy little troll with a permanent smirk on his face. I bet he looks like a fatter version of Ezra Klein.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    You can say "bullshit" without the *s, dammaze.

    We're not pussies here.

  • cynical||

    Hey! Speak for yourself. I'm a total pussy.

  • ||

    teachers "on average" might get paid $55k, but a first-year teacher will make more like $30k, and a thirty-year veteran will make more like $80k.

    Depends on the state. I grew up in western NY. Many of my friends went on to become teachers in rural WNY school districts. Most of them were earning over $50K by age 30. I'm sure that number has gone up significantly, because of guaranteed yearly salary increases.

  • ||

    Entry-level jobs get paid less? Stop the presses!

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    30,000 for nine months of work and government benefits, for a bachelor's, is not "crap".

  • Mr Whipple||

    Oh, and FUCK Matt Damon. I hope Sarah Silverman gave him herpes.

  • e||

    Fuck you, I got an ass for you to wipe, Mr. Whipple.

    Damon owned your crap camera crew.

  • Mr Whipple||

    I don't own a camera crew. I own a retail grocery store. And if you squeeze my Charmin, I will shove it so far up your ass you'll think you are being ass fucked by a Kodiak Grizzly bear.

  • e||

    Mr. Whipple, You don't own a camera crew now and you never will, you pathetic festering turd.

  • cynical||

    What an awful thing to say! I like Sarah Silverman.

  • LibertarianJRT||

    7th paragraph, last sentence: "Ther" should be "There".

    Great article. Damon is terrible. I am so glad they called him out on Team America.

  • ||

    The article is trash and spins the numbers in a comically stupid way.

  • sunny black||

    Oh okay...you must have the REAL numbers, right? Let' see 'em...

    Yeahh, okay...I'll wait over here.

  • Mr Whipple||

    I have real numbers for NJ.

    http://php.courierpostonline.c.....e/edstaff/

    Have fun

  • ||

    Once more, I'll go slow....

    If you are going to claim teachers are overpaid, then you need to compare them to groups with equal education, not people with no education. It is dishonest.

    This is pretty simple, so I'm just going to assume you don't want to understand it

  • Mr Whipple||

    Salary is supposed to based on the principle of diminishing marginal utility, not education.

    I'm just going to assume you have no knowledge of economics.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Either that or you are a Marxist prick that believes in the Labor Theory of Value, and doesn't realize that all value is subjective.

  • Trespassers W||

    Labor Theory of Value is written all over this discussion.

    I can't see the point of comparing teachers to groups with equal education, even if master's degrees were somehow interchangeable. If we concluded that teachers made more, or less, compared to people with similar education, what of it?

  • Mr Whipple||

    LTV is what all unions thrive on. Even Kevin Carson's Studies In Mutualist Political Economy is based on LTV with a subjectivist spin. But, Carson, came back to Austria after being taken apart by Murphy and Block.

  • cynical||

    You know, that's unfair to Marxists, as they at least thought that the quality of the labor itself was the source of value. This is more the Accreditation Theory of Value, aka "I have a piece of paper from the Church of Liberology stating that I am Class 3 Liberal; as someone who has attained the third degree of enlightenment, my work must be worthy".

  • Maxxx||

    +1111111

  • ||

    This is sounding more and more like Scientology all the time.

  • ||

    How's this for simple: if any teacher feels underpaid, he/she is free to quit and go find a better paying job. If they're staying put, they're not underpaid. Offer, acceptance. Anything else is entirely beside the point.

    But hey, let's face it -- most teachers are sitting still for their "shitty" salaries because it is more money than they can possibly make in the private sector.

  • ||

    If someone agreed with you that the numbers might not exactly support the claim, would you STFU? All the rest of your argumentation was COMPLETELY off the reservation, but you have a minor point about the stats.

    Nevertheless, 90% of a M.Ed. is stupid make-work, which would do nothing to make a teacher more effective at their task. As I said upthread, I know this for a fact, as I used to proof my daughter's papers for her. (Just finished her M.Ed.)

    What asinine nonense! Not my daughter's work, but the assignments themselves.

    This is similar to another field which takes the same approach: Nursing. Another area in which I know of what I speak. My wife has been an RN for almost 30 years.

    An RN with an AS gets the same instruction in actual patient care as one with a BS. The last two years of a BS are just tacked-on bullshit. And a MS in nursing is even worse.

    The BS/MS programs are just intended to fast-track you into administration. That, and to add a veneer of "professionalism" to a field which isn't by strict definition a profession.

    More clout, and more money is the goal, not better patient care.

  • ||

    http://www.dpi.state.nc.us/doc.....edules.pdf

    Even after 34 years of experience and continuing education, a teacher in NC would not pass the "average" teacher salary (29 with a Masters). In NC, it is illegal to have a union (Right to work state). Somehow given this information Teachers in NC are still pariahs because of budget difficulties. Perhaps the problem isn't unions after all. Perhaps it is awful management at the State level.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Sounds like a good reason to free education from state management.

  • Old Mexican||

    Now can we get back to a far more important question: How in the hell is sending even more money to a broken system going to help the students for whom schools exist in the first place?


    Well, it will certainly help Matt Damon feel less guilty about being filthy-rich.

  • Duke||

    Retirement at 55 with Medical and Pension. The douche is right, teachers don't teach for the salary. They teach for summers off and the great retirement.

  • ||

    I'm a big fan of Nick's, but the idea that teaching is a clock in/clock out job is silly. It's a salary job, and anyone that makes a salary must know that you do preparation outside of your required hours.

    Take an English teacher: you can't just walk in and think you will magically be ready to teach. You must read the material along with the students. You must prepare presentations, activities, and worksheets. You must take parental phone calls. You must let students ask questions and make up work in passing periods, prep periods, lunch, and after school. You often have to period sub for absent teachers during your one 50-minute period to prepare. You must chaperone a certain number of hours of after school activities.

    We haven't even gotten to grading. How long does it take to grade 150 six-page essays? How about 150 journals? How about 150 projects? How about 150 handouts? How about 150 quizzes? How about 150 tests?

    How much money out of the teacher's pocket does it cost to buy their kids pens, pencils, handouts, worksheets, tests, and quizzes when the schools don't provide over a certain amount. How about paper to let kids print using your computer because they don't have one at home?

    Yes, I believe in vouchers and teachers should have some incentive. Too many get lazy. But to judge teachers based on required hours is not looking at the "unseen costs" of the job.

  • ||

    Fits the narrative. Take your reality and go away.

  • sunny black||

    This seems really personal to you. Are you unemployed or just living in mom's basement still?

  • ||

    Your mother has been paying my bills. I work it of on her trashed body.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Your mother didn't teach you to spell "off", did she?

    Oh, and she owes me fifty bucks. Lousy at blowjobs, too.

  • ||

    Do you honestly think that teaching is the only profession that doesn't work 9-5?

    Try I.T., why don't you? You'll learn to love the overnight projects that can't be performed during business hours and the unscheduled nights and weekend work to respond to emergencies.

    Getting paid for 40 hours and working 50-60 some weeks is the norm. It's worse for code monkeys.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Try being the sole multimedia producer for a 24 hour news website. I work about 60-70 hrs a week on average. I work a hell of a lot more than my mom, although she is an excellent teacher. No summers off.

  • ||

    or the 2AM calls when the server goes down. Or the weekend (or holiday) software/server upgrades. Or the calls you receive on vacation when something critical goes down.

  • Sudden||

    Again, I'll flash my street cred on being engaged to a teacher.

    She does work a lot outside of the classroom and spend extra time in there, she also works with special needs kids of varying grade levels and assorted and sundry conditions within the same classroom environment. So she has to cater each lesson pretty individualistically.

    However, I also know a number of other teachers. When you get a classroom, you get the grade level and material. You develop your lesson plan. For the most part, you hit autopilot from there, with only minor tweaks year in year out, and maybe a rethinking of the broader framework every 3-5 years.

  • MATT DAMON||

    Tough shit. You chose this career so live deal it.

  • MATT DAMON||

    Tough shit. You chose this career so live deal it.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    That video is an intern piece, right?

    First rule of guerrilla journalism: Don't let your cameraman go "rogue" with Matt Damon.

  • ||

    According to Cory Doctorow, Damon "persuasively lambastes" the Reason reporter. Must've been all the paternalism.

  • nebby||

    The average teacher salary in Texas is 41K. Starting salaries hover just below 30K. There are a few wealthy areas where teachers do a bit better, but no one becomes a teacher for the money.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    My mother is a 20 year elementary school teacher in a small, rural town in Alabama. She has a master's in education, and her salary is about $52,000.

    I'll tell you, she is not an idealist. 52 grand goes a long way in podunk Alabama. With summers off and benefits, it was the easiest job to get with the highest pay.

    She's in it for the money.

  • ||

    and also, just for the record... a masters in almost anything is more real than a masters in education

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    My mother went into education partly because she didn't have an adequate high school education to succeed in harder subjects.

    So she was doomed to become public school teacher because she was taught by shitty public school teachers.

  • Sudden||

    That includes masters in fine arts, masters in culinary arts, and masters in library sciences...

    that says something.

  • Jim||

    I think it largely depends on where you are. Teachers in Plano, TX make considerably below the average salary for that city (it's a pretty affluent place).

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    And with affluence comes more opportunities for people to choose higher paying jobs.

  • ||

    41K is a damn fucking good salary in TX. Yeah it's not going to buy you a glamorous lifestyle, but you will definitely not be hurting for money.

  • Bhollis||

    What bugged me about the exchange was Damon's denial that job insecurity made him better at his job. After all, the whole mythology of Good Will Hunting was that he and Affleck weren't getting acting jobs and so wrote this screenplay for themselves to demonstrate their abilities.

  • Sudden||

    And clearly Matt was the only one that actually demonstrated any such abilities.

  • ||

    What about Mork? He was pretty solid in that.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    I don't think that's a legitimate criticism. Job insecurity makes a lot of artists more entrepreneurial (I have a ton of first hand knowledge here), but the motivation is the creative work, not the paycheck.

    One area where Michelle got it wrong in that exchange was to imply that monetary incentives are the most important. For most artists - and I am broadly including actors, writers, directors, musicians, etc. here - the money comes second to the eelfish desire to create something personally meaningful.

    Damon busted her on that fair & square.

  • ||

    successful actors (and artists) aren't exactly worried about their next paycheck - giving them more time to be creative.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    That's true, but any actor/artist who *hopes* to be successful in the long run has to care more about the work itself than the paycheck.

    A good project is worth doing for little or no money, because the motivation is always going to be the feeling of creation that you get when you do something well.

    A giant paycheck doesn't make most artists work harder, and in some/many cases, it can actively make an artist work less hard because big paychecks usually come with a lot of stipulation as to what your art will be. The buyer obtains more control over the project and that's not what most artists are interested in giving up (but will do for the money because they are whores like everyone else and need to pay rent).

    If I was in Matt Damon's position, financially & professionally, I would definitely take a free - but incredibly rewarding - project before I'd take a well-paid, but schlocky, piece of shit.

  • ||

    All Universities are money making machines. Especially those that have high profile programs.

    There is a stark difference between education and schooling. These people, including Damon, don't realize or recognize this.

    Also, Many of the people, with whom I attended university, that couldn't decide on a major; eventually chose to pursue education. My in-law's are passionate about teaching, many of their contemporaries are not.

  • ||

    All Universities are money making machines. Especially those that have high profile programs.

    There is a stark difference between education and schooling. These people, including Damon, don't realize or recognize this.

    Also, Many of the people, with whom I attended university, that couldn't decide on a major; eventually chose to pursue education. My in-law's are passionate about teaching, many of their contemporaries are not.

  • AlmightyJB||

    The real question is value. I don't have any problem with a teacher making a good salary with good benefits as long as the kids are getting a good education for that money. The problem is that in too many cases they are not. I would not lay all of that on the teachers. Parents, administrators, and the kids themselves all share in the blame for this. As do lawyers and politicians whom have made it impossible to maintain order in a classroom. Trying to deal with the few bad apples takes up more of a teachers daily time then is spent educating the rest of the kids that are there to learn. They receive no support from the administrators or the parents in those regards. In fact if they make Johnny stand in the corner, Johnny's dad may show up the next day and threaten to kick their ass or worse. All that being said, if we're spending twice as much money for zero more results than why should we spend it. And if a teacher consistantly fails to improve the knowledge of any of their students why should they be allowed to keep their job.

  • ||

    a thoughtful and reasonable post, what a breath of fresh air

  • e||

    $53,000 ?? Those pampered bastards. I'll bet they have a pension, too.

  • Franklin Harris||

    As I type, you're being attacked by Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC, whose poor teachers never taught him the definition of "straw man."

    After that, he launched into a rant about how the "anti-teacher" forces don't care about the performance of police officers. *sigh*

    Get him a free subscription retroactive to the criminal justice issue.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Was he actually directing his comments toward Nick, or Reason in general?

  • Franklin Harris||

    Reason in general.

  • ||

    Yeah, I usually cut O'Donnell a lot of slack. He is retarded, after all.

  • ||

    Truth.

  • ||

    This article deserves mockery. It is dishonest trash

  • dammaze's parrot||

    squawk

    Teacher's get Masters
    Teacher's get Masters
    Teacher's get Masters

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Lawrence is a pussy.

    AND overpaid.

    But he's trapped on a shitty shill network, so good enough for him.

  • ||

    by the way, who is this reason.tv reporter? She's fucking cute as hell. I'd like to see her instead of Nick Gillespie's hangdog face on my tv

  • Tman||

    I will agree with the fact that there are some excellent public school teachers out there who are incredibly dedicated to their profession, and all things being equal deserve more compensation for their efforts. You will have a hard time convincing me that having three months a year off plus vacation, plus full health and retirement benefits with barely any contributions is somehow a thankless public service however.

    What Damon and the rest of the bleeding hearts from the original video are afraid to confront is the fact that Unions and the state/federal dept of Education waste billions a year on political campaigns and bureaucratic nonsense. It's one thing to yell "teachers are great!!! Let's pay them more money!!!" And it's apparently quite another to say "well, ok- how much?" and "which one deserves a raise?" especially since the answer is apparently "as much as they need" and "all of them".

    Then you add in the fact that places like New York spend $100 million a year on things like the "Absent Teacher Reserve" and you have a recipe for fiscal disaster.

    Wake me when Damon says the Unions should fork over more of their money to teachers who actually TEACH and not the ivory tower "directors of education management".

  • Jim||

    As I was saying earlier, it's an incredibly local market. The teachers where I'm at (Plano, TX) have pretty crappy health plans (I have a much better one being a computer monkey at a bank), get 2 months off a year instead of the oft-cited 3 (I know, I know, big dif), and make considerably below the average salary for the city.

  • ||

    I'm down with the genius in the video who wants to spend $1 billion per student. Why the hell not! Imagine the quality cafeteria grub with that kind of dough!

  • Jim||

    If you legitimately believe that teachers are "paid well" and "work less hours them most" you are clearly not a teacher and know no teachers. I won't waste my breath telling you how fucking wrong you are, I just hope that you stupid fucks are met with a generation that can comprehend how truly incompetent you assholes are. Keep touting your right-wing bullshit. Your reporting, and reporting, is terrible. Maybe you should restart your schooling and learn how to ask a logical question or write a credible piece. Nice journalism you waste of sperm.

  • Jim||

    Uh-oh, I have a doppleganger. Don't listen to it!

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    You've convinced me. All those facts are really hard to dispute. So glad you didn't resort to ad homs and straw men.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    You know. I once said "piss" out-loud in school once, and I got a lecture from my principal on how vulgarity is evidence of stupidity.

    I always knew teachers were fucking hypocrites.

  • ||

    u mad bro?

  • ||

    Let me guess: product of the public school system?

  • ||

    Go easy on Jim. Being stuck in a low-paying teaching job for all these years has made him bitter. The drinking just makes it worse.

  • ||

    Hey, you'd drink too if you had to deal with kids all year had three months off every year and worked 35 hours a week.

  • SIV||

    3 months? You're forgetting every fucking Holiday, Spring Break, Mid-Winter break, Christmas break and about a month of sick leave. The school year is 180 days,teachers are required to show up, or use leave, for less than 200.

  • ||

    You're truly just a total moron. Just because you're not in the building, you think work comes to an end for teachers? Most of the ones I knew had to work weekends, I know my father did. Plus he got paid so little for his job he worked every summer at a second job just to make ends meet, so you can take all of your snarky bullshit about all the breaks that teachers get and shove it where your head is. Fucking jerks, get on my nerves. You're one of the guys that David Allen Coe was singing about in The Rodeo Song.

  • ||

    "Most of the ones I knew had to work weekends, I know my father did."

    I think we know who's the real moron.

  • Maxxx||

    I just hope that you stupid fucks are met with a generation that can comprehend how truly incompetent you assholes are.

    The good thing about having greedy assholes like you botch education completely is that the kids know your full of shit and do a crappy job.

    We don't have to tell them.

    They tell us.

  • cynical||

    Pretty much. Public education taught me that libertarianism was society's only hope.

  • megth||

    As someone that works in the education field, I can attest to being paid well and working fewer hours than most. I live in a rural area with few jobs outside farming, factory and cheap service work so working for the public education system is one of the best jobs you can land. And I don't know any place that pays better benefits than the state.

    I've worked service and factory before. I get way more time off and am less tired than I was at the end of the day than at the other jobs. Teachers that think the are underpain need to work in the private sector before they complain.

  • sevo||

    dammaze|8.2.11 @ 8:21PM|#
    "Took Nick some time to figure out how to spin the numbers.
    Comparing the salary of non-educated folks to a teacher is meaningless."

    Took dumbass a longer time to cherry pick and find some rational for the overpayment.
    Or, dumbass, did you just pick it off the union site?

  • sevo||

    Jim|8.2.11 @ 8:54PM|#
    "If you legitimately believe that teachers are "paid well" and "work less hours them most" you are clearly not a teacher and know no teachers."

    And if you don't, you are clearly a dumbass.

  • sevo||

    AlmightyJB|8.2.11 @ 8:43PM|#
    "The real question is value. I don't have any problem with a teacher making a good salary with good benefits as long as the kids are getting a good education for that money."

    Agreed. Let's find the market clearing price.
    Cut pay and bene's 10%. Still lining up for the jobs? Cut another 10%. Continue until the line ends, add 5%.
    Simple.

  • ||

    Spend a week with a teacher before commenting on their job.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I can't speak for anyone else here, but I spent approximately 416 weeks with teachers when I was growing up.

  • Bar Taker||

    Heh, by his standard nearly everyone is qualified to comment anyways. Of course even someone who has never met a teacher can comment on how they do their jobs (especially because they are paid with our money).

  • ||

    I would rather someone teach a class for a week. That would be more enlightening. It might be easy for them or it might be the worst five days of their life.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Who let the sockpuppets out?

  • ||

    Don't you just love it when one of the posts here is linked to Huff n' Puff or one of the C-level lefty sites, and the carpet-bagging progressives show up, full of self-righteous outrage and invective?

    Their incoherence and impotent rage is yummy.

  • Hugh Akston||

    It would just be a shame to see this thread go epic because of shrill, clueless, concern trolls.

  • ||

    Too late.

    RELEASE THE PARROTS!

    "SQUAWK! Teachers aren't paid enough! SQUAWK! They have Masters degrees! Poop! WHISTLE!"

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Ahh... nothing like relaxing to a nice poop-whistle concert.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I haven't heard much talk about the private school teachers that make $13,000 less than those in public schools.

    Aren't they the true idealists, the ones working for less pay and less job security?

  • SIV||

    No, only government teachers count. Private school teachers just babysit pre-educated future-Ivy League admissions.

  • ||

    moron

  • ||

    So lets see he played Glen Campbell's character in True Grit. Shouldn't Campbell have Tenure in that role?

  • ||

    I have a Masters in Teaching that's been about as useful in landing me a job as a Cracker Jack decoder ring.

  • ||

    I'll give you $10 for that decoder ring if you pay the shipping.

    You can keep your MA, though. It is of no use to me.

  • cynical||

    Sucks. But a master's degree in teaching is mainly to prove that you're willing to pay the state (or private-sector state-worshippers) tens of thousands of dollars so they can declare that you're fit to work for the state. IOW, a sucker. The trick is to get the Master's once you're already working for them, at taxpayer expense (where this is allowed).

  • sevo||

    Mike Smith|8.2.11 @ 9:09PM|#
    "Spend a week with a teacher before commenting on their job."

    I'm gonna bet:
    1) Mike Smith is a PS teacher
    2) Mike Smith is dumb enough to think that sentence means something other than "Mike Smith is an ignoramus."

  • ||

    I am not a teacher. My wife is and she works over 60 hours a week and gets paid 52,000 a year. Works in the summer and her vacations.

  • sevo||

    Mike Smith|8.2.11 @ 9:33PM|#
    I am not a teacher. My wife is and she works over 60 hours a week and gets paid 52,000 a year."
    So you're an apologist who got your talking points from the teacher's union. And who conveniently ignores the benes.

    "Works in the summer and her vacations."
    At what?

  • ||

    Gardening, maybe? Seriously, the "teachers work all the time" sttuff is BS. Save your breath, no one believes it.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Works in the summers? how so?

  • ||

    Also job security is a joke. My wife who has her masters and awesome reviews has lost her job 3 times because of budget cuts. She has lost her job right before her professional status year.

  • sevo||

    Mike Smith|8.2.11 @ 9:35PM|#
    "Also job security is a joke. My wife who has her masters and awesome reviews has lost her job 3 times because of budget cuts."

    And this has nothing to do with the unions' seniority rules, right?

  • ||

    Unions do not set the seniority rules, The states education boards do'

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Yes, and lobby groups do not write legislation; legislators do.

    Is this what passes for rational analysis in your infantile world? Teacher's unions have a lock on legislators and the state boards.

  • sevo||

    Mike Smith|8.2.11 @ 9:55PM|#
    "Unions do not set the seniority rules, The states education boards do'"

    You're kidding, I hope. Or you are truly dumb enough that you should step away from that keyboard. And I hope your wife *isn't* that ignorant.
    Listen, genius, where do you think those rules came from?
    I'll break the rules and supply the test answers to the 3rd-grad class:
    They came from the demands of the TEACHERS' UNIONS!
    You should either learn something of which you post or decide making a fool of yourself isn't worth it.

  • ||

    In other words she was let go so that a less competent, less educated colleague with more seniority could keep his/her job.

  • Union Steward||

    It's only fair.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    This has happened to my mother as well. Passed over for fulltime appointments because tenured (and believe me, much worse - took their classes) teachers had first pick/priority.

    Meritocracy, the US public schools are not.

  • ||

    When the argument boils down to "Teachers aren't paid 'shittily" relative to the rest of American workers, you're already admitting defeat simply because most American workers aren't doing as well as they once were. And besides that teachers are professionals primarily with master's degrees. I'd like to see you do a comparison between teachers and MBA's.

    However, you're a blogger, Nick. You probably made $50 for this post because you're being taken advantage of by a magazine that doesn't actually bother paying you enough to do appropriate research to support what is you're actually saying.

  • ||

    holy crap! you're the editor in chief! well, i stand corrected. you have health insurance.

  • sevo||

    KM OHare|8.2.11 @ 9:23PM|#
    "When the argument boils down to "Teachers aren't paid 'shittily" relative to the rest of American workers, you're already admitting defeat simply because most American workers aren't doing as well as they once were."
    Prove it.

    "And besides that teachers are professionals primarily with master's degrees. I'd like to see you do a comparison between teachers and MBA's."
    I'd like to see a comparison between teachers and those with masters in basket-weaving.

  • Trespassers W||

    I'd like to see you do a comparison between teachers and MBA's.

    JESUS, even if teachers make less than MBA's, so what? Should we pay them more? Why?

    I know why I would pay a teacher more--to get a different, better teacher.

    And yet I don't think these teachers are begging to be replaced.

  • ||

    Good lord. This is common knowledge, but if I need to document this, I will.

    "Overall, the median household income rose from $33,338 in 1967 to an all-time high of $44,922 in 1999, and has since decreased slightly to $43,318."

    These are figures in 2003 dollars. So over a a period of ten years the median household income has gone down.

    This takes no account of the fact that household income of the top 5% has far outpaced the rest of the country. This is just the median.

    These numbers are from Wikipedia.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.....ted_States

    And, while you'll probably accuse me of doctoring the entry, I swear on my master's in basket weaving that I haven't.

  • Trespassers W||

    And nevertheless it doesn't demonstrate that workers "aren't doing as well".

    http://cafehayek.com/2011/07/s.....class.html

  • Trespassers W||

    I'd also be curious to see what teachers' salaries have done over that period.

  • ||

    Uh... it does irrefutably show that they aren't doing as well. It shows that over ten years the median household is making less money in terms of 2003 dollars. I'm not sure how it could be any more clear to you.

    And in terms of teachers over that period, I'm nearly as curious as you are, but the fact that you have no idea to begin with suggests that you really don't know what you're arguing about at all. I will bet you $14 trillion dollars that it didn't increase as much from 1999 to today as much as the top 1% household's earnings did though!

    And I don't know what in the hell Cafe Hayek is, but the only thing I take seriously from something that begins with "Cafe" is a cup of coffee.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    A. Cafe Hayek is the blog of a bunch of professors of economics. You know, as in FA Hayek?
    B. You didn't know.
    C. Two words for you: purchasing power.

    Crack an econ book, wouldja?

  • ||

    Haha. Sorry, Sean Double U Malone. Cafe Hayek-- a blog-- wasn't in the curriculum when I took Econ in college. I'm sorry, do you have a dispute in the facts I've stated or not? I see what a tangled web I've weaved by getting involved in this now, but beyond that, why are you bothering to comment? You should be huddle up with your econ book! Wouldja?

  • Sean W. Malone||

    Cafe Hayek might not have been on your curriculum, but perhaps some of Russ Roberts or Don Boudreaux's books were. Who knows.

    Either way, you dismissed the blog stupidly while proudly professing your ignorance. I'd suggest you not take so much pride in a lack of knowledge of the people or ideas you are dealing with here.

    As for your household income figures, you have a few issues... first is purchasing power, second is the recession which skews the data, third is the assumption that household incomes are a great measure of overall pay or poverty. Economist Steve Horwitz can comment on this issue better than I can.

    http://www.learnliberty.org/co.....ing-poorer

    Moreover, calling teachers "professionals" is an insult to other professionals for the most part. And before you whine about that statement, I have taught, I have graded term papers, and I have a masters from NYU's Steinhardt School of Education (though not an ed masters, thank god). Also, my mom is a teacher, and a damn good one.

    That said, the vast majority of my teachers going through public school were idiots. As were nearly all the ed majors I went to college & grad school with. However, that is besides the point. A degree doesn't guarantee anyone a particular salary, or demonstrate competence. Pay is determined in the private sector primarily via an observation of the marginal utility of the employee to the employer.

    As has been pointed out up & down this thread, your assumption rests on a Labor Theory of Value concept that merely a person's actions entitle him to some kind of compensation, regardless of the value his actions bring to others. Thus you have some serious flaws in your understanding of "value" and "worth", on which you have based assertions about how valuable teachers are.

    Likewise, you are assuredly failing to factor in benefits and months of vacation for teachers that no one else gets. At least you'd have to if you want to claim they are "underpaid", especially when you fail to express "to whom" they are undervalued. They aren't undervalued according to the market if you look at private teacher salaries.

  • cynical||

    So, what, teachers aren't sharing in the sacrifice? How does that disprove anything?

    Also, do you get your talking points from dammaze? Teachers getting bullshit degrees because teachers have negotiated with the government to get an explicit raise on that condition might explain why teachers are able to get away with being overpaid, but it doesn't refute it.

  • GrizzlyAdam||

    If you're Matt Damon, then of course teachers are paid shitty. Alex Rodriguez is paid shitty if you're Matt Damon.

  • ||

    wrong. check celebrity net worth. i think damon is worth 40 mil. alex makes that in 1.5 seasons

  • ||

    So write a big check, Mr. Movie Star. They never do, you know.

  • ||

    Damon gives and does more for charity than you can imagine.

  • Bar Taker||

    Not everybody has your lack of imagination.

  • hmm||

    A masters in education is a fucking joke of a masters. It might as well be a masters is fucking basket weaving. It amazes me when people with an M.Ed think their masters program was difficult. Saying these people have masters degrees is hilarious, while we're at it the +30 is a fucking joke as well. 3/4 of my in-laws have an M.Ed and +30, color me anecdotally not impressed.

    After tutoring econ for both MBA and M.Ed I realized MBA students make M.Ed students look like fucking geniuses and that's really saying something. Hell even the Poli Sci students made the M.Ed students look like rhesus monkeys in clothing.

  • ||

    So, you're a tutor for MBA's and M.Ed's, both of which you consider to be fools, and somehow people are supposed to take you seriously? No wonder you're pissed off. I'm sure they don't give you benefits.

  • Trespassers W||

    So, you're a tutor for MBA's and M.Ed's, both of which you consider to be fools, and somehow people are supposed to take you seriously?

    On the contrary, it sounds like he has experience with MBA's and M.Ed's.

  • hmm||

    Ah the joys of reading comprehension. You may be one of the aforementioned students I was speaking of. You usually don't get benefits when you're a tutor working your way through school. At least not when I did it.

    Just so you know, I'm pretty sure no one here takes me too seriously. I tend to let my inner troll run free here. Even I don't take myself seriously, after all this is the internet.

  • ||

    Ha. And the joys of understanding one of the layers beneath reading comprehension, irony. Of course you didn't get benefits, you knob, I was joking.

    I will spell it out as a tutor might.

    1. I understood you were a tutor.

    2. You tutored people (M.Eds and MBA's) whom you considered to be idiots.

    3. You weren't studying either of those things.

    4. What follows is that you were an angry person who didn't make much money or get benefits and felt superior to A. the people you were supposedly helping and B. the people who were teaching them.

    These people are idiots, you figure. I know more about this subject than they do, you thought. Case closed.

    Apart from the fact that it sounds like you were a cynical and judgmental tutor who probably had no real business being in the field to begin with other than the fact that it paid your way through school, you're complaining about people who are trying to learn the field you yourself were supposedly participating in.

    Yes, you did it to "work your through school." Well, then you're a teacher, my friend. It sounds like you were a shitty teacher, and definitely a teacher with one student at a time, and one who probably made considerably more money per hour (though perhaps comparable with benefits) than a teacher with 25 students in his/her class, but a teacher nonetheless.

    And you didn't like it, clearly, because you considered your students idiots. Therefore other teachers must be the same as you.

    Good attitude, bud! I didn't like doing carpentry when I had a part time job in high school, but that doesn't mean I think all carpenters suck.

    And Trespassers, using phrases like "On the contrary" doesn't make you sound more intelligent. I don't care to take the time now to explain why your comment completely misses the point because I think I'll just get another comment back that says something like: "By that logic, what you are saying is that teachers should be paid for what they do, quid pro quo."

    I feel dirty now. God, what a waste of my fucking time. This is undoubtedly just making you hate teachers even more. Oh well, I was upset by this article and the cynical video a friend sent my way. We're all entitled to our indiscretions now and then. And really, you don't matter anyway.

    Bye, friends!

  • cynical||

    Now I will spell it out properly:

    1) hmm was a tutor.

    2) hmm noticed a correlation between field of study and success with the courses he taught, which he took as a marker for general intelligence

    3) the statistics were unfavorable to MBAs.

    4) and even more unfavorable to M.Eds.

  • ||

    Hmm taught one course: Economics. Well, I will assume economics. He wrote "econ." That could've meant "Home Economics" as well, or perhaps some course I'm unfamiliar with simply called "Econ," for I was just a lowly Philosophy and Politics major with a minor in Economics, which is short for nothing.

    But let me spell it out for you very clearly, because I doubt you read any thing I wrote, and judging by your previous posts, this is just what you do, rather than read things, or think about things, or, oh, I don't know, interact with human beings who exist in the real world.

    1. Economics has next to nothing to do with teaching unless you are one of the probably 1% of high school teachers that ends up teaching, and it has a lot more to do with becoming a Master's of Business.

    2. Your screenname is Cynical.

    3. Screw.

    These first two facts imply that you really have absolutely nothing new to say here. The third is not a fact but a command, implying that rather than apply the energy involved in your keystrokes to this messageboard, you ought to apply it to something more useful. You can define it however you want, and argue it with other people over the days to come.

  • cynical||

    "1. Economics has next to nothing to do with teaching unless you are one of the probably 1% of high school teachers that ends up teaching"

    Economics has a lot to do with math and logic, i.e., as an indicator of general intelligence. It's true in my personal experience that, outside of honors classes in better schools, intelligence has little to do with teaching, so you're at least half right.

    Would I have something new to say if my handle was "gullible"?

  • ||

    1. Economics has next to nothing to do with teaching unless you are one of the probably 1% of high school teachers that ends up teaching [it]...

    And as I demonstrated upthread, neither does a Masters in Education. No, more like the "new professionalism" that spawned Sanitation Engineers. You know, the guys that make all that noise early in the morning in your alley.

    I used to teach at university level as affiliate faculty (science/technical field). The administrators all sneered at us because we weren't "educators", even though they couldn't even comprehend what we were teaching.

    Fuck off now, it's time to go home.

  • hmm||

    I used to teach at university level as affiliate faculty (science/technical field).

    Ahh, there's the problem.

  • ||

    In fact teachers do make a shitty salary. The fact of the matter is that teaching in this country is not a truly respected profession. Just take a look at other countries who are far ahead of us for comparison. You can make all the calculations on time but it does not show the entire picture of work brought home, nights at school for conferences, etc... I speak from experience having worked as a school teacher for a decade and then as a school principal for 3 more years. Damon is correct. I never met a teacher who just became one for so called job security. They became a teacher because that's what they love. The fact that the right wing chooses to disrespect teachers in general are because most of them hate public education. Period. Their children would not be caught dead in a public school. But this is so short-sighted that this ultimately will keep us failing.

  • proud libitard||

    your right, dude. Totally...no other profession EVER spends extra time at home doing their work. Teachers are the only job that does this....

    (sarcasm implied)

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Oh you're right but the difference is that those other jobs are paid more and not attacked by the Republicans. Of course unless you're nurse or a fire fighter or a policeman/woman which Republicans also despise.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Republicans hate policemen? This is news to me. Wasn't Bernie Kerik nominated as the first head of Homeland Security? Wasn't Rudy Giuliani notoriously "pro-cop"?

  • ||

    Who the republicans attack is their business.

    And if you are looking to attack them directly, you better go find a Team Red website, because this sure as hell ain't one.

  • Tony||

    That's a laugh, sloopy.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    That's a laugh, sloopy.

    Not as much as your last clinical visit, Tony.

  • proud libitard||

    btw, I'm about to have a little girl...and she will NEVER touch a public school.

    They're where true education goes to die!

  • SIV||

    Sending your kid to PS staffed with Government teachers is child abuse.

  • ||

    Congratulations on the girl.

    I don't necessarily agree with your assessment of public schools: there are some great schools and some great teachers out there. But yeah, they've got plenty of counterparts.

  • proud libitard||

    Thank you for the kind words...

    My opposition might not be what you initially thing.

    I'm opposed to education that is politically influenced. In other words, it's based on the whim of the masses. I don't care for Liberal or Conservative based education cause they both have their issues. I just want my daughter to have a solid basis of learning. Nothing more.

    As an aside, I live in Wake County, NC which is considered a very good PS system and my little girl will still not touch its floors.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Perhaps you should consider Jordan Lake Sudbury School

    http://www.jordanlakesudbury.org/Welcome.html

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Kids should not be exposed to politics until they are old enough to realize how dangerous it is.

    And, only after that, they should be taught ALL political POVs.

  • ||

    you make NO sense.

  • GrizzlyAdam||

    You're absolutely right. Nobody in any other profession loves their job. And nobody except teachers work late into the night.

    But one question, if you loved your job so much, and should be considered so noble for performing it, then why are teachers a bunch of fucking whiny-ass babies?

    STFU and go back to saving the world.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    The fact that the right wing chooses to disrespect teachers in general are because most of them hate public education. Period. Their children would not be caught dead in a public school. But this is so short-sighted that this ultimately will keep us failing.

    What type of school do the Obama children attend? It is not just the "right wing" -- it's everybody with half-a-brain and the money to get their kids out of your unionized hellholes.

  • Maxxx||

    In fact teachers do make a shitty salary.

    Then get another job that pays you what you think you're worth.

    The fact of the matter is that teaching in this country is not a truly respected profession.

    It's hard to respect a bunch of pussies that hide behind "collective bargaining" and fear honest evaluation above all else.

  • cynical||

    "The fact of the matter is that teaching in this country is not a truly respected profession."

    Maybe there's a reason for that, like the inability of the teaching field to quality control its membership?

    If every other physician was Dr. Nick Riviera, medicine wouldn't be a respected field either.

  • ||

    Or, they became a teacher because the barrier to entry was so low. If teaching is so fucking incredible, why isn't Damon one of them?

    Snark aside, I'm not sure that the right or left wing hates or loves public education. Last time I looked, right-wingers (i.e. Republicans) were busy pushing creationism, abstinence, and other silliness into the curriculum, while the lefties have been pushing state-worship, union worship (I certainly remember learning a lot more about Eugene Debs in history that I ever wanted to know) and other nonsense into it forever.

  • proud libitard||

    seriously, we're forgetting the most important question...would you hit that reporter? I'm gonna say a resounding yes!! Holy crap, she's hot!

    More videos of her please and let them be of the wild persuasion.

  • ||

    And she speaks so well.

  • proud libitard||

    does it matter?!?

  • kinnath||

    I lost all faith in public school teachers when my kids teachers couldn't complete a sentence without a major grammar error during parent/teacher conferences.

    If I was having kids today, I would definitely home school.

  • proud libitard||

    I'm old and having my first kid... (got lucky with a really awesome hot young girl). Anyway, my child will be home schooled....maybe later on she'll go to private school but not until I brainwash her first

  • ||

    Damon torpedoes his own argument in the first minute of this clip. If teachers teach because they love to teach, then their salary and benefits should be irrelevant.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    And here is where idealism butts up against the cold, hard reality.

    "We're going to cut your benefits and place increased demands before we renegotiate your contract."

    "Bullshit, I refuse to do this shitty job for less than I get now!"

  • sevo||

    Andrew Perez|8.2.11 @ 9:32PM|#
    "In fact teachers do make a shitty salary."

    Bullshit.
    Cut pay and benes until no one takes the job, add 5%. Then we'll find out what teachers should make.

  • Andrew Perez||

    Have you ever taught a day in your life? What is this hatred you have towards teachers? Teachers should be respected and they're not as a whole. It is not bullshit. What IS bullshit is the fact that you are commenting on something you have no idea about or experience with.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Yes, only the informed class may venture opinions on teachers' pay. It's not like Sevo doesn't pay taxes!

  • Trespassers W||

    What IS bullshit is the fact that you are commenting on something you have no idea about or experience with.

    Which is why few people are really in a position to complain about how much CEOs get paid, right?

  • sevo||

    Andrew Perez|8.2.11 @ 9:46PM|#
    "Have you ever taught a day in your life?"
    As a matter of fact, I've taught two semesters of ESL. In a PRIVATE school.
    What is this ignorance you have about reality?

    "Teachers should be respected"
    Is self-righteousness a requirement to become a teacher, or is it part of the curriculum? Regardless, it's tiresome and should be embarrassing to those spouting it.

    "What IS bullshit is the fact that you are commenting on something you have no idea about or experience with."
    What IS bullshit is your claim to intelligence.

  • Maxxx||

    Is self-righteousness a requirement to become a teacher, or is it part of the curriculum?

    Its the only requirement to becoming a teacher.

  • ||

    Have you ever taught a day in your life? What is this hatred you have towards teachers?

    Why yes, I have. Furthermore, my mother has a Masters in special Ed, and my daughter just completed her M.Ed. And they both hated the incongruent bullshit they had to wade through

    Teachers should be respected and they're not as a whole.

    Look inward, grasshopper.

  • Ancapistan||

    But you are somehow qualified?

  • Esteban||

    A friend of my mom's just retired from teaching ceramics in NYC junior high schools. Her pension is gonna be $100k, for the rest of life + benefits. Tough life.

  • Esteban||

    Oh and she's gonna be on something called F-status, so she can substitute teach and make $300 a day. It's modern-day slavery!!!!!

  • Trespassers W||

    Let's stipulate that teachers get shitty salaries.

    Why pay them more?

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Because then they'll really try, and do better! It's all so obvious now!

  • Bar Taker||

    If they don't like their pay they can quit and go work somewhere else, it is as simple as that.

  • Paul Simon||

    When I look back at all the crap I learned in high school. It's a wonder I can think at all. And though my lack of education hasn't hurt me none I can read the writing on the wall.

  • James||

    Poorly doctored statistics, ludicrous assumptions, and typos everywhere (e.g. "Ther are more teachers per student than ever before..". The author's motivations for writing this article are pretty clear; they were on the receiving end of a lot of F's as a child.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Gee, I always knew a doctorate from SUNY Buffalo was worth shit.

    FUCK YOU, SUNY BUFFALO!

  • Trespassers W||

    How in the hell is sending even more money to a broken system going to help the students for whom schools exist in the first place?

    *crickets chirping*

  • sevo||

    Andrew Gonzalez|8.2.11 @ 9:51PM|#
    "Oh you're right but the difference is that those other jobs are paid more and not attacked by the Republicans."

    Ooooh.
    So your bullshit is "I hate Republicans since they might cut my welfare"?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Nailed it, sevo.

  • ||

    Not Gillispie's best work. He really has gone from Reason to Reason TV.

  • ||

    First of all they may work shorter hours at school but they do indeed work very much even off and often are reimbursed for their effort researching class projects. They have to grade tests and homework. Compile grades meet with parents and deal with their students on the basis of discipline. My mom was a teacher so I know the hardships of teaching and compared to my dad who a a computer engineer and he never brought work home as much and wasn't paid for overtime nor had to deal with difficult children. Teaching and handling with 30 children all day, it's definitely worth more than just $54,000 and the schools near me only pay $36,000 for a science teacher in secondary school. To say it's the average is a gross underestimate to the inequality each state has.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Every teacher apologist acts as if it is the only profession on the planet to bring work home.

    "it's definitely worth more"

    Obviously not.

  • Joe M||

    And they get summers off.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    My mom lives in Alabama (I've mentioned this before in an early post, so sorry for repeating it here.) and farthest she has to travel for her job is Birmingham, or possibly Montgomery.

    Tell me, how often do engineers or business executives have to spend days or weeks at a time away from home, sometimes half-way around the world?

  • ||

    Hmm, this engineer does six to eight weeks a year in China. Plus some domestic travel. Plus bringing work home and dealing with suppliers and co-workers in China a couple of nights a week. I do make a better salary than most teachers.

  • cynical||

    "I do make a better salary than most teachers."

    That must be because you have a doctorate, right?

  • cynical||

    "I do make a better salary than most teachers."

    That must be because you have a doctorate, right?

  • Trespassers W||

    I'm going to beat this point to death.

    Let's stipulate that teachers' jobs are super fucking hard, and they make shitty salaries.

    There are lots of jobs that are super fucking hard with shitty salaries.

    Why should we pay them more? Are they going to teach better? If not, could we fire them and hire better teachers? Are we actually planning to attract better teachers and get rid of the current crop? Is this what teachers are asking for?

    Or are we just going to pay more money to crank out another generation of serfs?

  • Mr Whipple||

    Obviously, someone who doesn't know the difference between Labor Theory of Value and Subjective Theory of Value.

  • Trespassers W||

    Well duh, they're not going to learn about that in school.

  • Mr Whipple||

    They don't even teach personal fiance in most high schools.

  • Hugh Akston||

    They certainly don't teach basic composition. That's why most colleges have instituted freshman comp as a required course.

  • Minister of Language||

    Personal Financial literacy is a crime against the state. All citizens must be perpetually in debt so that they can rely on government handouts. Your thoughtcrime has been duly reported to the authorities.

  • Joe M||

    Why is Matt Damon being so mean to the lovely Michelle Fields?

  • Maxxx||

    He's an angry repressed homo.

  • ||

    MATT DAMON!

  • ||

    An engineer doesn't work around MBAs?


    I work for a major regional engineering consulting firm. The only MBAs are a handful at corporate.

    Anyone that has a post graduate degree here has one in structural, environmental or transportation engineering.

    No education major I ever met comes close to having the giant brains these guy and girls have.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Then maybe you haven't met the right people. But the fact of the matter is that people that I work with who have Master's or Bachelor's degrees are some of the most intelligent people I've ever met. You may be gauging "intelligence" because they aren't engineers. Just place those engineers in a classroom with 30 7 year olds and see what happens.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Are you serious? I recognize that ditchdigging is hard work and I would not want to do it, but that does not make most ditchdiggers I know "intelligent". Words have meaning, something you as an (ostensible) educator should appreciate.

  • Ragin Cajun||

    Just place those engineers in a classroom with 30 7 year olds and see what happens.

    The kids might learn some cool shit?

  • Trespassers W||

    Missed it by THAT much.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    Intelligence does not equal social competence or dominance.

  • Trespassers W||

    Just place those engineers in a classroom with 30 7 year olds and see what happens.

    They might learn something?

  • ||

    Give me a break.

    A MEd is nowhere near as demanding as a MS in Structural Engineering or even in Traffic or Transportation.

    The average teacher I know would have dropped out long before completing an undergraduate engineering program if she could have gotten admitted in the first place.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    And you would know this how? Have you completed both of those programs? Difficulty is relative to the person. An engineer may do poorly in education and vice versa.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    He said "intelligence", not "difficulty". Like I said, digging ditches is hard work. That does not make every ditch-digger Einstein.

    Teaching is just plain not as intellectually strenuous as most other professions. Deal with your martyr complex somewhere else.

  • cynical||

    Ability to deal with kids is probably a talent, not a skill. If it is learned, it's something you learn in an elementary school classroom, not a college classroom.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Unfortunately it's non-intellectual comments like this that make having a sane discussion impossible. In case you didn't read it before, I was a teacher and a school principal. I worked and work for a living. Now at at college and have never once taken welfare, unemployment or anything else. What I don't understand is this hatred towards the profession that many Republicans have. Perhaps because a lot of teachers are paid with government funds and they hate government.

  • Esteban||

    Reason.com is libertarian. Libertarian does not mean Republican.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Well it seems that "Republicans" are the ones in D.C. and all over the country rallying against teachers.

  • Maxxx||

    No, it's everyone across the country that realizes that public education has become a make work program for idiots.

    Some, but not all, of those people are republicans.

  • sevo||

    Maxxx|8.2.11 @ 11:22PM|#
    "No, it's everyone across the country that realizes that public education has become a make work program for idiots."

    But is so easy for brain-deads to call the opposition Team (color) rather than address any argument.

  • ||

    If by "teachers," you mean "profligate, unsustainable spending with little to show for results beyond rent-seeking reward payola for teacher's unions," then I agree with you completely.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    You should check your stereotypes before you post. The cardinality of "Republicans" is pretty low on this board.

  • ||

    I will repeat this, and I hope it sinks in: if you want to argue with Republicans and call them out for all their evil shit, I suggest you go find a Team Red site and have a ball.

    Confusing this for a Team Red haven abd crying your left wing talking points just exposes your ignorance on who we are.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Well the reality is that the more I find out about "who you are" the more it looks like Republicans by another name. Ignorance.

  • ||

    "Go back to school Joel. Learn something."

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Free hint: just because someone happens to speak the same way on a particular issues does not mean they are lockstep on all other issues. See: prohibitionists and liquor-store owners, for example.

    -1 for Logic. You are failing this thread and are doomed to repeat it.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Andrew must be watching MSNBC. I swear I heard O'Donnell say shit like this.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Andrew must be watching MSNBC. I swear I heard O'Donnell say shit like this.

    I guess it was too much to expect good Andrew to come up with something that didn't originate in his partisan hugbox.

  • cynical||

    Don't be an asshole, lots of people on welfare work for a living too. I mean, they have to go out to the mailbox to collect the check, take the check to the bank. It might not be challenging or demanding or close to what they deserve, but the same could be said of lots of work, especially pubsec work.

  • ||

    Andrew, I don't hate teachers. I have friends and family that are teachers. They are fine people, with a fairly tough job. I can say the same thing about my friends and family in other fields as well, however.

    My beef is with the SYSTEM, which includes the union thugs and apologists you see on videos such as this. I have actually apologized to several teachers for tarring them with a broad brush, but then I have to remind them that they are complicit in the scam by not speaking out against it.

    Similar arguments are made here, A LOT, about "rogue" cops, and their enablers. We are most definitely not Team Red.

    Try approaching us with a bit of respect, and you might be surprised by the results. That's what I do when I talk to teachers. In your defense, the horrid trolls upthread sort of poisoned the well for you.

    By the way, maybe you can answer a question for me. When I was in HS in the 70's, we had one principal with one secretary, and one general office staffer. The Super had one secretary, and no assistants.

    At my son's HS, there must be 40 non-classroom staff, counting the USD office for a HS with an enrollment of 500. Why?

    I can only come up with two answers:
    1. A lot of people are getting by with a minimal work-load, or
    2. The system has become so overloaded with bullshit, that it takes that many people to wade through it.

    Either way, I'm not impressed. Do you have an alternative I am not seeing?

  • ||

    I'm sort of setting you up, I guess. PS hires have increased 300% since the 50's, while student population has only increased 60%. And classroom size (the center of the great debate) has decreased 42%.

    Show us that you're educated, and crunch those numbers. If classroom size has only decreased 42%, and hires have gone up 300%, where the fuck are all those people working? It's not the classroom. I'm reasonably certain they don't have hordes of janitors and lunch ladies held in reserve somewhere.

    "Administration", baby. Deputy Assistant Directors of Curriculum Development don't come cheap.

  • ||

    I love teachers. In fact, I've had many, many fantasies about them.

  • stzj1||

    I had this argument once with people I worked with and because I do not think that teachers are underpaid it means I hate kids!!! 53K, summers off, complete job security, $500 deductible Health Insurance for free. Sign me up!

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    This $53k per year is completely false and a manipulation of numbers. I personally didn't know any teachers that made this amount of money. Absolutely ridiculous.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    So personal anecdote is better than the data presented above? Critique that in a meaningful way.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Garbage. If you do not know any person who made that salary, you are either a) in the poorest district in America or b) lying. Senior teachers in the tiniest villages earn 50,000.

    Here is a chart - note that a full 1/4 of the counties do not even fall that number 53K.

  • Trespassers W||

    ALL those numbers are manipulated!

    We're down the rabbit hole now, folks.

  • Maxxx||

    He said that he didn't know any teachers making 53k/yr.

    Not that he didn't know any teachers making a lot more than 53k /yr.

  • omg||

    I know a teacher that makes more than 53k who graduated with me in '08. Hell, she makes more than I do, and I'm a CS major. And I work 12 months a year.

  • Esteban||

    The aforementioned friend of my mother made $100k this past school year and is retiring and will continue to make that as her pension. She was a ceramics teacher.

    Maybe this is a spoof. Must be,

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Are you kidding? The average teacher salary in the school district where I live is 65K, and this is not a high cost of living city, either. Most people here make half that.

  • ||

    The average teacher salary in Vermont was $50,863 in 2009. Knowing how averages work I'd say I could walk through a school and have a pretty good shot at finding one or two who make $53k.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    Me fail teaching? Unpossible!

    I can't fathom how people think that Matt Damon "won" the "argument" that took place during that "conversation". The initial question was bad, Damon's answer was just side-stepping. The camera-man's interjection was pretty dumb but Damon's come-back can pretty much be summed up as: "Matt Damon!" and thus wins the price of being even dumber.

    I actually liked the video. Even though not every response was as hilariously skullfucked as the "let's just spend a billion bucks on every child" (Scarcity doesn't exist! That's just propaganda!) most of them pretty much spoke for themselves. Those depicted have an enemy and it is teh corpurationz and el capitalismo. Less of those and all illnesses of society will be cured!

    Still, I would prefer it if Nick or some of the more experienced folks of Reason handled delicate situations like that.

    PS: Our very state-centric public school system is IMHO just a small tad better than the US'. Luckily our teacher's union (yes - there's pretty much only one) is not as strong as those in the US. To my knowledge our average private schools are better than the average public school (I am not talking better grades here - I am talking education) while paying the teachers less.

  • omg||

    I worked with a German (he was sort of a lefty) who said he admired the US education system and thought it superior to the German system. All I could say was JESUS NO DON'T DO IT! ANYTHING BUT OUR SYSTEM!

  • RandomGermanDude||

    Well the German system is quite selective. In most states students are distributed to three distinct school types after elementary school (4 years, 6-10 usually) according to their performance (but parents also have a say depending on the state). If you want to go to university you have to get a degree from the "highest" type in most cases. For lefties that's typically the most despised part of our system. Probably the part your colleague was complaining about.

    Having said that: Most lefties here favor the Scandinavian system because in their eyes it's more egalitarian and supposedly gets better results because students stay in the same school from 1st -> 10th grade. But of course that's a way too simple view to grasp differences in performance of national education systems. And having meet enough people enrolled in Scandinavian universities I am glad that our university system also practices a bit more of selection (as unfair as it is - I am not defending our status quo here per se) than theirs do.

  • sevo||

    James|8.2.11 @ 9:53PM|#
    "Poorly doctored statistics, ludicrous assumptions, and typos everywhere (e.g. "Ther are more teachers per student than ever before..". The author's motivations for writing this article are pretty clear; they were on the receiving end of a lot of F's as a child."

    Poor James! Proven to be a propagandist, now tries ad hom.
    Poor, poor (PS teacher) James.
    BTW, I hope you get fired.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    When in doubt and losing an argument, just insult the other side right? "I hope you get fired" are you serious? You are the perfect example on why we shouldn't be cutting education in any aspect.

  • Trespassers W||

    "I hope you get fired" are you serious?

    He's kidding. We know that teachers don't get fired.

  • sevo||

    Andrew Gonzalez|8.2.11 @ 10:12PM|#
    "When in doubt and losing an argument, just insult the other side right?"

    Yeah, if you're a PS teacher I hope you get fired also.
    Can you read? Pointing out that the 'other side' has failed to the extent of using ad homs is not "insulting" the 'other side'; it's stating facts.
    How dumb are you?

  • Maxxx||

    I'd say he's a lot brighter than the average PS teacher.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Shit, we're spending more on education than ever, Andrew.

    Or are you wringing your hands over "gosh, they might get only a three-percent budget increase, instead of four percent"-style budget-cutting hysteria?

  • JLM||

    This video made a yahoo news blog.

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lo.....42801.html

  • Sean W. Malone||

    I hope this is because Chris Moody works there now.

  • Colin||

    Pretty surprised to see the video posted on Yahoo!'s front page. Of course, they added some snarky title to it.

  • A Serious Man||

    The only reason we're having this discussion is because the Reason.tv girl and cameraman walked right into this. Hopefully she learns how to master Socratic irony when talking to left-wing ideaologues.

    What Damon said in no way justifies collective extortion by public sector unions who are allowed to donate to the politicians they are supposed to negotiate with.

    Not to mention the fact that the temper tantrum thrown by the Wisconsin teachers pretty much invalidates the claim that they do it for the children since they were clearly using the children as leverage so that they could continue to get paid well in benefits and pension.

  • THANKFUL!!!||

    What I will say is that they don't make what they are worth. Most teachers hold Masters Degrees with the addition of having to have teachers credentials. They also spend additional time after school hours grading papers, meeting with parents, and attending and participating in many school events and meetings that they are not compensated for. In addition to this, they spend their own money for supplies for their students, and help students from families with little or no income pay for field trips, supplies, lunch, and many other things. So I would have to say that it is shitty for them, but they don't care because they do it because they DO LOVE THEIR JOB AND THEY LOVE THEIR CHILDREN. All they ask is for a little extra support. And don't forget that when there is a child who has parents who aren't participating in their childs life or education, it is the teachers that are there to nurture and care for them. THEY DESERVE MUCH MORE THAN ANYONE GIVES THEM CREDIT FOR!!!! And one Last Thing.....THANK YOU TO ALL THE WONDERFUL TEACHERS WHO TRULY GIVE THEIR ALL TO TRYING TO MAKE A BETTER FUTURE FOR OUR CHILDREN!!!

  • RandomGermanDude||

    CAPSLOCK MIGHT BE CRUISE-CONTROL FOR COOL but not for valid arguments.

  • ||

    WHY U NO LIKE MY CAPS?

  • THANKFUL!!!||

    Wow! That's a good one. So, let me get this straight, what counts in valid arguments are letter cases instead of the actual statements? THANKS!!! I'll remember that.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    You just stated your feelings and opinions on the matter. I can't see any facts or arguments.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I use caps now and then, when I'm too lazy to type a .

    But you gotta use 'em sparingly.

  • cynical||

    "Wow! That's a good one. So, let me get this straight, what counts in valid arguments are letter cases instead of the actual statements?"

    No, Mr. I Don't Understand Basic Logic, what he said was that using capital letters doesn't make your argument any more valid, i.e. the opposite of what you just said. Maybe they should revoke your Master's Degree. Sorry, "Master's Degree".

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    Needs MORE random ALL CAPS!!!!

  • Mr Whipple||

    Brackets. It [NEEDS] more [MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX] brackets.

  • ||

    Also some FOR THE CHILDRENZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ caps...and bolding.

  • ||

    Don't you guys get it? Teachers are the ONLY ONES WHO CARE! You big MEANIES! :::runs sobbing from the room:::

  • sevo||

    THANKFUL!!!|8.2.11 @ 10:19PM|#
    "What I will say is that they don't make what they are worth."

    Thank you. Any proof? Or just bullshit from the teacher's union?
    I'm guessing the later.

  • Montani Semper Liberi||

    Well, they do make $13,000 more than private school teachers on average, so they don't make what they are worth. They are making more.

  • sevo||

    And we're getting less.

  • Maxxx||

    because they DO LOVE THEIR JOB AND THEY LOVE THEIR CHILDREN.

    Hey socialist cult member.

    They are not your children

    Fucking douchebag.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Children - like money - ultimately belong to The State.

    Obama said so, so it must be true.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    So, send the tits and ass in on a guerrilla Reason TV vid and the site gets noticed in the national media.

    Who woulda thunk?

  • A Serious Man||

    She's hot, but also an incompetent. I mean she just embarassed the magazine on a national scale by allowing Damon to give such a charasmatic non-sequitur as a response.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Well, fuck it, here I was, on the verge of converting my friends to libertarianism...and this fucking shit set me back!

  • ||

    I wouldn't go as far as incompetent, but she wasn't ready for prime-time. Damon, as a celeb, albeit not the sharpest knife in the drawer, is used to being fucked with by reporters. He has a publicist who force-feeds him boilerplate responses to all kinds of questions. You think he wasn't prepared for these kinds of questions at a teacher's rally?

    Her approach was ham-handed.

  • ||

    I mean, "given that you are a fuckhead" is not a standard opening line when employing the socratic approach.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    No, but it should be.

  • Robert||

    Teaching in the USA has a reputation as poorly paid among the professions because for many years it was. It's going to take some years for people who aren't observing closely to wake up to the new reality. There's a big lag there.

    Not helping is the fact that private school teaching and adjunct professorship are still very competitive and poorly paid sectors of the teaching profession. Those examples are held up to keep pumping up the pay of the sector that has become very well paying (via previous rounds of such pumping), to make it even better paying. It's like the Monty Python sketch about Dennis Moore, who kept robbing from the formert rich and giving to the former poor after, thru his previous efforts, the poor became rich and the rich poor.

    Same thing with the lag in perception regarding class sizes. Public school classes got to be big in the 1960s, convincing people of a need to reduce class sizes, so classes shrank...and shrank, becoming really small while people still think classes are too big.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    I think you're right. I don't know if "poorly" is really the right term, but it was understood that there were tradeoffs - lower pay in exchange for lots of time off and security.

  • Warty||

    Well, this was one of the more notable clusterfucks here recently. For what it's worth, I had, I think, six teachers that were worth two shits during my 13 years in shitty public schools. The best was my kindergarten teacher telling us that if we buried our dead pets in our yards, the vultures would come and dig their corpses up. I remember standing guard over a dead kitten's grave for a while after that.

    Here, have something that almost all of you will hate.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    I think my 15 YO son would like it, Warty.

  • Warty||

    It takes...let's call it...practice...to enjoy this stuff.

  • Warty||

    By the way, I find myself successfully resisting being infected with Ron Paul's horrible, horrible optimism this time around. You?

  • Hugh Akston||

    Any teacher who convinces their kids to perform the ak'voh for dead pets is worth $75,000/year.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Reminds me of one of my grade school teachers telling the class that they shouldn't use toothpaste. Brilliant.

  • Amakudari||

    Always loved that song.

    Reminds me a good bit of Anthems-era Emperor.

  • Conorclockwise||

    One of the worst number spins ever!!!

    Teachers make 67% of their counterparts with Master's degrees, thats 26,000 less. Work longer hours (43 hours in the classroom, 13 hours outside per week)

    Isn't there a editor, fact checker at Reason?

  • A Serious Man||

    Okay, but I had a discussion with my AP US history teacher that was retiring the year I graduated. He's due to make over 90K a year guranteed in pension. Same goes for a retired English teacher that would occassionaly sub, she would always talk about traveling the world on her pension.

    Sounds like a good deal to me.

  • Trespassers W||

    counterparts with Master's degrees

    Again, given that a master's in education is possibly the least-demanding postgraduate degree in existence, who do you imagine their counterparts are?

    Work longer hours

    ...and shorter years.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Those summers off are actually very grueling, what with the gardening, house cleaning, and vacationing teachers have to do.

    And don't get me started on the hellish 3 weeks off for Christmas!

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Oh woes, teaching is so shitty that teachers are abandoning their jobs in droves for better paying jobs with better working conditions all across the country. In fact, high school teacher's aides are teaching most classes today, because there are no teachers any more.

  • ||

    If teaching wasn't a monopoly position and was actually subject to market forces, as are the other 98% of jobs in this country, enough of them quitting for more lucrative or satisfying jobs would raise the base salary some.

    But, since we know they live and die at the political class' whim, all they can do is piss and moan about the pay and spew tiresome moral fables about how they're the only hard working people in America.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: conorclockwise,

    Teachers make 67% of their counterparts with Master's degrees


    A "counterpart" is a person that does the same thing in a different area, bud. You're equivocating.

    If what you're talking about is that a teacher holding a Master's degree makes 67% of what a person in a different profession with a Master's degree, then maybe you're right, but that would only mean one thing:

    A FUCKING TEACHER IS ONLY 67% AS PRODUCTIVE AS ANOTHER PERSON WORKING A DIFFERENT PROFESSION.

    And that has NOTHING to do with the teacher's abilities or intelligence, but with the marginal utility of a teacher vis-a-vis a financer or an industrial designer or a managerial accountant.

    Another lesson in economjims:

    NOBODY IS "ENTITLED" TO A CERTAIN SALARY JUST BECAUSE HE OR SHE RECEIVED A MASTER'S DEGREE.

  • A Statist||

    Buh, buh, how can we win the future without highly paid government teachers!?

  • Trespassers W||

    Well put as always, OM. But do you have to swear so dang much?

  • Sean W. Malone||

    I fuckin hope he does.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Have it yer way, dude.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    I humbly propose this as threadwinner.

  • ||

    I can tell you one thing. I sure as hell don't want any fucking mashed potatoes.

  • Maxxx||

    A FUCKING TEACHER IS ONLY 67% AS PRODUCTIVE AS ANOTHER PERSON WORKING A DIFFERENT PROFESSION.

    Gotta disagree with you here OM

    Teachers are way, way less than 67% as productive as other people.

  • David Lee Roth||

    I'm HOT FER TEEE-CHURRR!!!

  • RandomGermanDude||

    Repeat after me:
    "A degree does not determine the value of the work you do."

    The comparison your are drawing is pretty much useless. No number-spinning needed. Shit, I would be astounded if American master's degrees in education would be any better than those here. They are the least respected - and for a reason (for example that most people get their degree in education while for example in the engineering sciences you have more than 2/3 failing and dropping-out).

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    These are facts. The government is an absolute necessity in many areas.

  • RandomGermanDude||

    You mistake "opinion" with "fact". Seems there is much left to be done in the US education system.

  • ||

    No, the government is an absolute necessity to force people to give you what you want.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "The government is an absolute necessity in all areas."

    FIFY'd. No charge.

  • cynical||

    A role in education outside of providing funding for disadvantaged children is not one of those areas.

  • Trespassers W||

    It's like an insane twist on Bastiat: we say we do not want the state involved in education, and they say that we do not want any education at all. Or a state either!

  • RandomGermanDude||

    You forgot about Somalia.

  • mr simple||

    Wow, it's like they handed out some sort of talking points before the event; everyone's just spouting typical progressive bullshit. I'm guessing a logic class isn't required for a teaching degree. But why pick on Matt Damon? It's not nice to make fun of retards.
    If anyone is serious about improving education, the only solution is to remove government from schools. Even if charters perform the same as public schools, they do it for less money. Competition is the only thing that both improves products and drives down prices.

  • Andrew Gonzalez||

    Yeah, go ahead and take government out of everything. Let's see how many chemicals end up in your food or a drug company puts out a drug that may or may not harm you. Oh, and be sure to drive to work on a crappy road. Oh, and if you have a fire or a break-in, let's hope that you are ready to pay primo dollars for assistance.

  • Trespassers W||

    DRINK!

  • A Serious Man||

    You're not a big fan of critical thinking, are you? Typical statist cop-out response.

  • Warty||

    You forgot SOMALIA, brah.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Yeah, go ahead and take government out of everything.

    -1 in English for colloquial "yeah". The proper word is "yes". -1 in Logic and Rhetoric for arguing against a strawman.

    Let's see how many chemicals end up in your food

    All things are made of chemicals. -1 for Science. Also, -1 in grammar for "let's". "Let's" is not a proper contraction, especially not in this context.

    or a drug company puts out a drug that may or may not harm you.

    "may or may not" is redundant. -1 for English and Logic.

    Additional notes:

    1. Double "oh, and" shows lack of imagination in writing.
    2. We already pay "primo dollars" for assistance, so -1 more for Rhetoric.

    Grade: F. See me after class.

  • ||

    EVERYONE'S ROOF WOULD LEAK IF NOT FOR GUMMINT ROOF INSPECTORS. KITTENS COULD BE SECRET ASSASSINS. LOWRIDER PANTS WOULD ROB BANKS AND GROPE YOUR DAUGHTERS. CARS WOULD EXPLODE FREQUENTLY AND UNEXPECTEDLY. POLITICIANS WOULD BE CORRUPT AND DISHONEST.

    OK, I made that last one up.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    ROOOOOOADZ!!!

  • Trespassers W||

    More to the point, Bureau of Labor Statistics and other surveys that take into account the reported number of hours worked in a year consistently show that on a per-hour basis, teacher income (again, not including fringe benefits, which are typically far more robust than those offered other workers, including college-educated professionals) is extremely strong.

    *crickets intensify their chirping*

    Let's keep focusing on that $53k number, huh?

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Um, yeah, but...the BLS is awfully paternalistic, don't you think?

  • sevo||

    Robert|8.2.11 @ 10:24PM|#
    "Teaching in the USA has a reputation as poorly paid among the professions because for many years it was."

    Define "poorly paid".

  • Robert||

    Paid poorly enough for people to say they're poorly paid.

  • sevo||

    Conorclockwise|8.2.11 @ 10:26PM|#
    "One of the worst number spins ever!!!"

    And as a cherry picker, I hope you get fired.

  • Von K||

    Teachers aren't paid anywhere near what they are worth.

    This isn't so much an argument as a frame of reference. The average teenaged babysitter can expect to be paid $5/$6 per hour for a single child. So assuming this is a regular full time job, then a 15 year old could make $10,000 a year doing little more then making sure a child doesn't electrocute themselves.

    Teachers are expected make sure a room of 18+ children stay safe and educate the leaders of tomorrow yet they get paid worse then a postal worker (check payscale.com). All teachers have a minimum of a college degree and many have a masters degree and their pay is on par with that of a garbage truck driver.

    Insanity.

  • A Serious Man||

    But without garbage trucks our streets would be filled with festering waste and a cholera epidemic would wipe out our educated class. So clearly we must pay sanitation engineers as much as teachers!

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I'll save some time.

    Labor theory of value.

  • Trespassers W||

    That's not going to save any time, because none of these people know what you're talking about.

  • sevo||

    Von K|8.2.11 @ 10:43PM|#
    "Teachers aren't paid anywhere near what they are worth"

    That's GREAT! I'll bet you got a million of 'em!
    BTW, you're full of shit.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Von K,

    Teachers aren't paid anywhere near what they are worth.


    What they are worth to whom?

    The average teenaged babysitter can expect to be paid $5/$6 per hour for a single child.


    And when she isn't, she then does not babysit - right?

    So if she DOES babysit, will you also allege that she isn't paid anywhere near what she is worth?

    Teachers are expected make sure a room of 18+ children stay safe and educate the leaders of tomorrow yet they get paid worse then a postal worker (check payscale.com).


    Makes one have a frightening image of the progression of increasingly awful leaders one can expect, if they leave school barely able to understand the instructions in a bottle of aspirin.

    All teachers have a minimum of a college degree and many have a masters degree and their pay is on par with that of a garbage truck driver.


    That's because there are sufficient college-graduated pinheads to fill the post of teacher compared to garbage truck drivers. Supply and demand.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Teachers are expected make sure a room of 18+ children stay safe and educate the leaders of tomorrow yet they get paid worse then a postal worker (check payscale.com). All teachers have a minimum of a college degree and many have a masters degree and their pay is on par with that of a garbage truck driver.

    I guess that's why it's so hard to fill teaching jobs. Except it isn't. How strange.

  • Trespassers W||

    Teachers aren't paid anywhere near what they are worth.

    Remind me why gold is more expensive than water.

  • Sean W. Malone||

    +1

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    [insert obligatory Arrakis reference]

  • Nash||

    Does the 15 year old have to pay for facility costs? Do the teachers? What about insurance? Or assistants? Supplies? Infrastructure? Advertising for their services? Recruiting students? Oh they don't? Oh OK. Did So your comparison is fucking stupid then.

    To your other comparison: Postal workers are obviously paid too much.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    We're never going to win, are we?

  • Trespassers W||

    Nope.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I'm going to side with the teacher-fetishists and attack the camera guy. Dude fucking single-handely set back the cause of education reform.

    Fuck you, camera guy!

  • Matt||

    It wasn't that bad of a point.

    It was a rough estimate, to be sure, but yeah 10% of everybody in every industry is probably underperforming.

    He would have been better off flipping it around and asking "why do the PEAK performing teachers get paid exactly the same as the guys who take 40 personal days? Why don't the best teachers get rewarded?" His mistake was going negative instead of approaching it from a more positive perspective.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Yeah, I don't think the camera guy did that badly, either.

    I actually wish the camera guy interjected during news broadcasts more. I want to live in such a world.

  • ||

    Wow, some of these idiots remind me of the treasury tards when proposing tarp, and other methods to pump money into a failing system. But hell, i don't blame them, that's the easiest way to achieve affects, not necessary the ones they wanted though.

    It seems that people just want to yell and get all worked up and say that the gov took away our education funds so we need to throw money at the problem because that's how we solve problems in america.

    what the fuck.

  • Rob||

    That cameraman really should be fired. Throwing out a statistic for which you have zero support flies in the face of his publication's most basic principles (and its name).

    Maybe the guy can get a job working for Senator John Kyl, aka Mr. When I said 90 percent it was not meant to be a factual assertion.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Drink!

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Ooh...that is a very subtle entry into the rules of the drinking game. So the shot must be savored, perhaps sipped.

  • ¢||

    We're never going to win, are we?

    Nope. You can't save yourself from a killer bee attack by punching them.

  • Punchmaster!||

    Nobody tells Punchmaster he can't save himself!

    *PUNCH*

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Holy crap, another Seanbaby fan!

  • Matt||

    I've said this before in other comment threads.

    Public teachers are almost forced to be politicized because there are little or no incentives or bonuses given to better performers.

    If there were actually bonuses based on performance, there'd be a lot less complaining.

    You don't see, for instance, minor league baseball players complaining about their salaries. Why? Because they aren't good enough, and everyone knows it. They don't have a leg to stand on.

    So if we maybe applied some of the same incentives that baseball players have to the education industry, maybe there'd be less griping overall because people would get what they deserve based on what they produced.

    Instead, the system is so rigid and shortsighted that all other things (like experience) being equal the teachers who bust their butts get paid the same as the teachers who don't give a damn. Until that changes, there will continue to be emotionally charged scenes like the ones captured on this video, and a whole lot of agitating.

    And who's the big winner of all this arguing? Authoritarians and cronies. The drug warriors, the warmongers, and the politically connected corporate welfare recipients are loving this. They love seeing liberals and libertarians duke it out for a few scraps from the table, while they kill, plunder, incarcerate en masse.

  • Trespassers W||

    Good points, Matt.

  • Matt||

    Thanks, TW.

    I'm not surprised at the reaction to the Reason.tv reporter at this event. You had to kind of expect it, it's like going into a nest of angry hornets. So I'm not going to sit here and be "outraged" at what the people there said at this event. Teachers are mad, I get it. But I think most are misdirecting their hostility away from the establishment that lays down these oppressive restrictions on their pay and at the very people who are trying to free them from their rigid salary structures.

    I don't appreciate how people who call themselves "liberal" bash libertarians over this stuff and try to equate us with conservatives. Like that cheap shot Bill Maher took at Nick G on his show. Nick said "I'm an independent" and Bill was like "No you're not," implying that Nick was basically licking GOP boots. That line of his boiled my blood and I wanted to punch Maher right in the mouth when he said that. Must be nice to be the arbiter of everybody's political ideology, Bill. But then you turn around and vote for a warmongering, drug-incarcerating, bailout dealer like Obama. Excuse me, what's "progressive" about that, asshole?

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Teachers are mad, I get it. But I think most are misdirecting their hostility away from the establishment that lays down these oppressive restrictions on their pay and at the very people who are trying to free them from their rigid salary structures.

    So they are either stupid or deliberately evil? Great choices.

    Teachers like the system the way it is. There - I said it. They don't care about the students or even the injustice of crappy teachers getting paid just as much as the "good" ones do. Why? Because teachers like the job security; they like the benefits; they like the fact that the job is relatively easy. They (most of them) don't give enough of a shit about students or the injustice of the situation to change the system. On top of that, the young and naive ones have been taught at the feet of their Evil Masters in the Art of the Martyr.

    Want proof of this? Look at the fact that the unions talk about what a "difference a teacher makes". Then, raise the idea of merit pay and watch the 180.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    My final proof is RC's Law: Consequences that are foreseeable are not unintended

  • Bingo||

    Hahahaha, I would love to see Maher's reaction to this comment. Agreed on all points Matt.

  • ||

    I think you're thinking of George W. Bush, he's the one who did the warmongering, started the bailout, and probably did a lot of drug-incarcerating. So I want to punch you in the mouth when you say things like punch Bill Maher in the mouth, because Nick Gillespie is a little GOP toadie who's too ashamed to admit he is a Republican.

  • ||

    You might want to wipe off your face. You still have some of Bill Maher's load all over it.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Ha ha ha ha. Libertarians = Republicans! How insightful and delightfully original!!1!!!

  • ||

    I'm saddened that you went there, but YOU went there. Before I start: most of the regular commenters on this site spent 8 years bashing Georgie-Porgie for NCLB, Medicare D, two wars, etc. That notwithstanding...

    Obama not only continued both of the Bush wars, he's added one his own. Obama greatly expanded the bailouts/handouts. Obama has been exactly like Bush when it came to the WOD, especially the application of federal law to state-legal MJ dispensaries.

    So, what was your point again? And nice example of liberal peace-nikking. If you want a swing, I will provide you with an address.

  • Matt||

    "I think you're thinking of George W. Bush, he's the one who did the warmongering, started the bailout, and probably did a lot of drug-incarcerating. So I want to punch you in the mouth when you say things like punch Bill Maher in the mouth, because Nick Gillespie is a little GOP toadie who's too ashamed to admit he is a Republican."

    And in 3 years Obama hasn't lifted a FINGER to reverse those policies, except for some overtures on Iraq and medicinal marijuana. Go back to your Donkey Church.

  • Robert||

    Unfortunately I think there's little scope for such a system to work. Paying teachers according to how their students do would be like paying doctors, nurses, dentists, etc. according to how their patients do. If instead of making it a mere pay incentive, there were the opp'ty for promotion to a major league or relegation to the minors, which classes or schools are going to become the minor leagues?

    If you want to see competition and reward based on students' results, welcome to varsity sports coaching. At many institutions in at least some sports, team performance is how the coaches are evaluated for retention or firing. But is that your model?

  • Matt||

    How is the current model working, Robert? Paying the teachers who bust their butts exactly the same as teachers who couldn't care less?

    There has to be some kind of metric. It may not be solely student performance. I'm sure there are other factors such as peer evals, etc. I'm not an expert in what it takes to teach effectively, but there have to be metrics that are available to evaluate performance. Heck even bonuses for showing up and not using 50 personal days in the year (as one of my precalc teachers with tons of extra vacation time once did) are better than nothing!

    And no I'm not suggesting that there be "minor league" schools -- but that teacher's bonuses be tied at some level to performance. Why not have positive incentives like bonuses, why are you suggesting that it will be negative incentives? And what is so bad about the varsity sports model? That is very results driven. Why are trivial things like sports driven so much by results but the most important things like imparting knowledge lacking incentives for performance? Shouldn't it be the other way around, if anything?

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Like I said. Robert would go on and on about "what a difference a teacher makes", and then says things like "paying teachers according to how their students do would be like paying doctors, nurses, dentists, etc. according to how their patients do."

    Teachers must not be making much of a difference, Robert, so why do we need them again? And, as a matter of fact, we generally DO pay health care professionals on how their patients do, within the context of that particular patient. If you want each kid to do some kind of entrance exam so you can place him on the bell curve properly, please do so, but the current system (as Matt said) is total garbage and needs to be scrapped.

  • sevo||

    Andrew Gonzalez|8.2.11 @ 10:05PM|#
    ..."Just place those engineers in a classroom with 30 7 year olds and see what happens."

    What absolute horsehit!
    Place those teachers in the engineering department and ask that the bridge doesn't fall down.
    I can see you slept through "logic", but you seem to have majored in "stupid".

  • ||

    An' hars me werkin' like a dawg wit lower wages all da sommer lon' 'cuz da gym teecherz haz lonscaipin compnees'. fuk a teecher, cooldn teech me sheet and took my bizness ins da sommer! All der kidz hads dem heir jordan tenny shooz boot I shoppd at GABEZ FOR SHITTY ASICSSS>+!Awl a teecher did waz treet me lyke trash@!

  • ||

    Fuck, I lol'd on myself.

  • sevo||

    Andrew Gonzalez|8.2.11 @ 10:55PM|#
    "Yeah, go ahead and take government out of everything. Let's see how many chemicals end up in your food or a drug company puts out a drug that may or may not harm you...."

    So you're not just a whiny apologist for the teachers' unions, you're a full blown ignoramus?
    Got it.

  • Matt||

    I think we may actually have a left-authoritarian on our hands, ladies and gentlemen. A rare breed these days, as most so-called liberals will at least pretend to be in favor of civil liberties. At least it's refreshing to see someone who's consistent -- more public schools, more jails, and more killing. Sounds about right.

  • Tilting at Windmills||

    Wow, some liberal troll comes along and suddenly an evening thread is over 400 comments long!

  • ||

    Trying to beat trolls at their own game is down right quixotic.

  • Trespassers W||

    We're libertarians. We're masters of the quixotic.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Hmmm...I sense deep truth in this statement.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Eh, it's a slow night.

  • juris imprudent||

    I don't know about "teachers" in general, but public university presidents don't have much to complain about...

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/.....-salaries/

  • Amakudari||

    If you are going to claim teachers are overpaid, then you need to compare them to groups with equal education, not people with no education.

    So no one who's merely graduated high school has an education, then, right? You're basically saying teachers do have a master's degree but don't serve a socially useful function, yet they're still somehow underpaid.

    Perhaps the sad thing is that the power is so heavily tilted in favor of the current education regime that there's never really been an attempt to intellectually defend its structure even though the flaws are so well-known.

  • Matt||

    "So no one who's merely graduated high school has an education, then, right? You're basically saying teachers do have a master's degree but don't serve a socially useful function, yet they're still somehow underpaid."

    Yeah, it was real entertaining to see how that guy basically assumed that people with high school diplomas are "uneducated." You know there was a time when you didn't have to go to college to get a great job, and frankly it was a more reasonable time. I heard some smack talk about Bill Gates in that video. Well, guess who doesn't have a college degree, and is included in Nick's "unfair" comparison of teachers to the "uneducated?"

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Favorite Matt Damon movies:

    1. The Departed
    2. Good Will Hunting
    3. Dogma
    4. The Bourne Trilogy
    5. Ocean's 11

  • ||

    Dogma sucked, replace it with True Grit

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Haven't seen it yet, but I imagine I'd feel the same way when I see it.

  • Robert||

    "Dogma" was great. He was in it?

  • ||

    The other fallen angel, with Affleck.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    1. Good Will Hunting
    2. The Departed
    3. Saving Private Ryan
    4. Dogma
    5. True Grit

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    1. Team America
    2. Team America
    3. Team America
    4. Team America
    5. Team America

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Damon can't even count... the Bourne trilogy would make that *eight* movies, not five.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I can't decide which one I like the most. I like the stunts of the the second and third, but the storyline and camera work of the first were better.

  • Amakudari||

    joe'z law at work

    4 other films + 3 films in a trilogy = 7 films

  • ||

    What about Team America: World Police?

  • ||

    As someone who went through the credential program at a school with a supposedly "good" program, I can assure you that the average intelligence and/or educational level of those going through the program are well below those of the average students I encountered as an undergrad.
    And the MAs offered were just as much of a joke.
    My classmates struggled with 1-2 page papers, and simple assignments were met with loud complaints.
    My high school was significantly more rigorous.

    Standard disclaimer that anecdotes are not data, but I left the first credential program I was in because the teacher ignored the curriculum and decided to make the class an introduction to communism. I am not joking at all. I thought, "This class is a joke, I need to go to a better program." So I went to the program considered one of the best in my city. It was just as much of a joke. I chose this program because there were several alums from there who told me how great it was.

  • Carla Lewis||

    The point of his rant wasn't that teachers made a shitty salary, the point he was trying to make is that teachers teach because they love to teach, not because they have tenure.

    Whether his view is correct or not, I do not have the information affirm or contradict. However, for the author of this article to focus solely on his blurb about mentioning teachers' salary is an obvious attempt at misdirecting the reader.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Nick isn't that smart. He went to SUNY.

  • ||

    The title of this post is asking if Matt Damon is right about one point that he made. Where is the misdirection?

  • Bob||

    Anyone who says that teachers don't work long hours has never been friends, relatives, or spouses with a teacher and really has no idea. Most jobs you do your jobs and go home. Teachers may have less "logged" hours, but they spend time before and after school, at night, on weekends planning, preparing, grading.

    Some teachers suck. Most work really hard and get paid very little and recognized very little for the lives they impact and change.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    Read the thread before you spout more talking points that have been refuted.

    Facts:

    1. Teachers are typically paid for work for 36 weeks a year. Most other fields, especially professional ones, work 48-50 work weeks a year.
    2. Other professions take work home too. Teachers are not unique in this regard.
    3. Teachers (and yes, I know plenty) do have the luxury of working very hard once every couple of years and going on autopilot the rest of the time. You can see this in older teachers, who are so rehearsed that they sound like carnies.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Dude, it sounds like these trolls have gone on autopilot.

  • ||

    You've got to be kidding me. Give up this crusade, Reason. I was a public school teacher in NYC for eight years before leaving for international schools, where I could actually be compensated well for the work I do. There is NO WAY, no matter how you skew the numbers, that teacher's do not make a "shitty" salary. A teacher in NYC cannot afford an apartment on that salary, without a roommate, much less raise a family. Almost all of the teachers I know outside of New York, work summer jobs- waiting tables, bartending, coaching, etc.- to make ends meet. And these are people with BAs, and Master's degrees. This is an absolutely pointless debate. Stick to arguing for drug law reform.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Eventually, Obama will call for raising taxes on middle-class workers... which includes teachers.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Using NYC as your exemplar isn't going to get you very far. Most people with Master's degrees can't afford to live there.

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    Of course, telling a New Yorker that a public elementary school teacher in rural Alabama can afford a nice, two-story house would probably cause the New Yorker's face to melt.

  • Hugh Akston||

    A teacher's salary will buy you a decent house in the Denver suburbs too.

  • myopic, liberal New Yorker||

    What's a "Denver"?

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Nicely done.

  • Matt||

    "Of course, telling a New Yorker that a public elementary school teacher in rural Alabama can afford a nice, two-story house would probably cause the New Yorker's face to melt."

    Whoa, you're telling me there's civilization outside of New York City? Incredible!

  • Matt||

    "A teacher in NYC cannot afford an apartment on that salary, without a roommate, much less raise a family."

    Then maybe it's time to leave NYC and its high rents. Hell, who CAN afford all that in NYC besides Wall Street fat cat bailout recipients? And of course your Upper East Side Democrats?

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    There is NO WAY, no matter how you skew the numbers, that teacher's do not make a "shitty" salary. A teacher in NYC cannot afford an apartment on that salary, without a roommate, much less raise a family.

    You do realize that there is a whole lot more of the United States outside of NYC, yes? Or was it just too much for your fainting couch sensibilities that you couldn't even bother to look for work where those LOVING BIGOT REDNECKS UGH lived? The cost of living does tend to be a bit lower there, you know.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    I found him places in his beloved NYC that you could definitely afford on an entry-level teacher's salary, and he sniffed at those too. He thought he had an awesome, even-more-martyry point than those who had come before him, and it blew up in his face. "I can't afford NEW YORK on NINE MONTHS of work! Mein gott!"

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    What can you do, Rev? SWPL douchebags will be SWPL douchebags.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Also, considering that this cretin immediately high-tailed it overseas rather than look for work in another part of the US, I seriously doubt this person valued the education of their students over living the *NYC LIFESTYLE!*

    "You want me to give up my weekly performance art/poetry slams? What kind of monster are you?"

  • ||

    You've got to be kidding me. Give up this crusade, Reason. I was a public school teacher in NYC for eight years before leaving for international schools, where I could actually be compensated well for the work I do. There is NO WAY, no matter how you skew the numbers, that teacher's do not make a "shitty" salary. A teacher in NYC cannot afford an apartment on that salary, without a roommate, much less raise a family. Almost all of the teachers I know outside of New York, work summer jobs- waiting tables, bartending, coaching, etc.- to make ends meet. And these are people with BAs, and Master's degrees. This is an absolutely pointless debate. Stick to arguing for drug law reform.

  • Dylboz||

    Is it possible that there just isn't an equal demand, and hence, monetary value for an education BA or MA compared to say, engineering? Nah... couldn't be. You're TOTALLY entitled to a nice apartment in Manhattan on the taxpayer's dime!

  • ||

    If you choose to get paid with stolen money, you should accept the consequences and stop whining like a little bitch.

  • cynical||

    MASTER'S DEGREES!!!!!

    Incidentally, same initials as MATT DAMON!

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    You mean that they had to work an ENTIRE work year? Oh, the humanity! What has civilization come to?
    And, hey, most people cannot afford NYC without a roommate. But just for fun, I looked it up – the entry-level salary for a teacher (bachelor’s and no experience) in NYC is somewhere between 46K – 50K. And guess what? I found a whole list of apartments in the Bronx you could definitely afford…by yourself and on that salary!
    I know, it is not in Manhattan (what affordable place is?) and the Bronx is not great, but these are the sacrifices (like working 48-50 weeks a year) that normal people have to make, so get off the cross already.

  • ||

    With all due respect, regardless of the cross or the high horse I am crossing the Triborough bridge on, I would be terrified to see some of those affordable Bronx apartments, unless I'm feeling in a kind of bed-buggy, gang-banging mood.

  • Rev. Blue Moon||

    jesus, as if you didn't already sound like a too-whiny little fuck, complaining about the disaster and overwhelming social injustice that your little friends had to work an ENTIRE fucking working year just like the rest of us, now you sniff your nose at places where hardworking blacks and Hispanics have been making New York, well, New FUCKING York for the past 100 years. You can take your pathetic sniveling and fuck the hell off.