I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Friday, October 29, 2010

Another Day, Another Lie...

Chris Christie preens in front of the cameras. So here we go again... (h/t deciminyan over at Blue Jersey for the video)
"$25,000 to $30,000 per pupil per year, depending on the city, and how you calculate the number..."
Yeah, "how you calculate the number" might have a little something to do with it, don't you think?

Bruce Baker puts it succinctly:

"... but in any respect, it is a king's ransom for the type of failure Peter just talked about."


If this is "failure," we need to bottle it and sell it.
"And that is awful from a fiscal perspective. And we need to do better with that money, and we can do better with that money through some of the reforms we've talked about. Merit pay..."
Merit pay, which doesn't work.
In the first scientifically rigorous test of merit pay, Vanderbilt scholars offered between $5,000 and $15,000 to Nashville math teachers whose students scored higher than expected on a statewide exam.
But the incentive was a bust, they found. Except for some temporary gains during the three years studied, students did not progress any faster in classrooms where teachers were offered bonuses.

"... more charter schools..."
Yeah, charter schools don't work so well either:
New Jersey Charter Schools in particular are pretty average and those that are better than average serve very few of the lowest income children, no special needs children and few or no limited English proficient children.
Christie continues:
"I don't know which one of you out there in the private sector are getting 5% raises, but I don't think it's many of you."
Teachers sure aren't getting 5% raises:

A report by the New Jersey School Boards Association shows that for all new teacher contracts settled since January, the average salary increase is 2.03 percent, the lowest in more than 30 years.
For contracts settled since April, the average increase on the typically three-year contracts is even lower, at 1.6 percent. Eighty percent of the 198 contracts that expired in June still have not been settled, but school officials said it is typical for negotiations to continue into the new school year.
The nonsense continues:
"Also, the overwhelming majority of teachers pay nothing, zero, for their benefits. Zero! I don't know how much you pay for your health benefits; I'm sure it's more than zero."
This is what comes from electing a governor who knows nothing about economics and has never run a business. Is there any real difference to your employer if he offers you a $100,000 salary or an $85,000 salary and $15,000 worth of health insurance?

Compensation is a TOTAL package. Of course the teachers "pay" for their benefits, by giving up salary. That's one of the reasons why teachers work 5/6 of the time the comparable private sector does yet make only 2/3 of the money.
"Full family medical, dental, and vision coverage, from the day they're hired until the day they die."
The state health plan calls for one eye exam a year and $100 toward glasses - is that "full" vision? The dental most teachers are offered is so expensive they self-insure. All plans offered to teachers have co-pays, deductibles, and out-of-network expense. It's decent insurance, but hardly "gold-plated," and certainly not "full."
"This year, in my state budget, $850 million dollars for retiree health benefits. $850 million dollars."
You know, Chris, you'd think you'd want to do something about that. You'd think maybe the insane rise on health care costs over the past few years would worry you. You'd think you'd be worried about the effect of these raises on property taxes.

So, how many health insurance CEO's have you called out on this? At least as many as the number of teachers you've excoriated, right?


He then goes on a little rant about his daughter, Bridget, coming home from school, pretending to be upset that her teacher isn't getting a raise.

Except his kids go to private school. Classy bringing your own kids into this...

1 comment:

thinker said...

What is this clown going to do when he has "succeeded" and teachers (and other public workers) are once again being paid a barely livable wage as was the case around 30ish years ago in NJ? What is he going to do when he accomplishes this and property taxes are still outrageous, there is still no tax relief in sight, and the state is still a budgetary nightmare? I can hardly wait to see the public's reaction when all this is done, and the only thing that's changed is that you've got someone without a college degree teaching your children because they can't find a college graduate who'll go into teaching anymore. Please pass the popcorn, it's going to be a good show! The saddest part of all is that so, so many will probably still find a way to believe that it's all for the best and the governor is some kind of economic super-genius.