David Gray No I am not kidding! I would not want the average schmoe off the street to come in and teach my kids without going through some sort of teacher basic training at minimum. We have a program like that in Georgia, where anyone with a college degree can become a teacher without a teaching degree by going through a teachers basic training course with mentoring. It takes a minimum of one year to complete.
David Gray Its about honesty. This is why I am not a Republican. They do things I cannot stand. The same goes for the Democratic party. I think the best course of action when voting is to take the whole package that a candidate has to offer into account and vote for the one you believe will be best for the country as a whole. It is near impossible to find someone that would enact policies exactly as you would.
David Gray The $76k number is very misleading as it appears to be total compensation not take home pay. I cannot find an article that states whether or not the $76k number is total compensation or not, but when I do a quick Salary.com search I find an average salary of $52,000 - $55,000: http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/Teacher-Elementary-School-Salary-Details.aspx http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/Public-School-Teacher-Salary-Details-Chicago-IL.aspx http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/high-school-teacher-Salary-Details.aspx Then when you look at benefits you see the $76k number come to light. This seems to confirm that the $76k number is total compensation. Now also add in the fact that Chicago, IL has a much higher standard of living than say Columbia, SC and you find that the $53k that a teacher in Chicago, IL makes is the equivalent of $43k in Columbia, SC. I don't know about you, but $43k isn't a large salary.
David Gray I can't find any article where it says this is total compensation. But when I do a quick search on Salary.com I find an average salary of $52,000 - $55,000: http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/Teacher-Elementary-School-Salary-Details.aspx http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/Public-School-Teacher-Salary-Details-Chicago-IL.aspx http://swz.salary.com/SalaryWizard/high-school-teacher-Salary-Details.aspx Then when you look at benefits you see the $76,000 number come to light. This seems to confirm that the $76k number is total compensation. Now compare the $53k number in Chicago to the equivalent of $43k in Columbia, SC. All of a sudden, the average Chicago teacher doesn't appear to be making much money at all.
David Gray $76,450 in Chicago, IL is the equivalent of $61,197 in Columbia, SC. If this is the total compensation number, which I believe it is, then 30% of it are benefits. That means net average salary in Chicago, IL is $53,515 and $42,838 in Columbia, SC. Those numbers seem quite accurate and not over the top if you ask me.
David Gray Honestly, I am surprised this ad took this long to come out, but then again maybe that is the strategy. The weakest part of Romney's tax plan is that he refuses to name the deductions they want to eliminate to pay for the reduction in tax rates. It is a serious problem that I believe Obama could ride all the way until November, because I doubt the Romney campaign will put out any specifics because it would open them up to even more criticism. This is why I prefer the simplicity of the flat tax, the FairTax, or 9-9-9. Those plans are straightforward and there isn't anything to hide.
David Gray Independents are unlikely to go to the polls in November and say to themselves, "you know what, I don't like how Obama handled that Chicago teachers strike situation so I'm gonna vote for Romney." Ain't happening. The only people where this 'matters' are people that have already made up their minds on who they are voting for in November. This situation will not change enough votes to matter, and thus it won't matter come November.
David Gray One thing to realize is that the 30% salary increase isn't some number produced out of thin air. Changing the required in school work hours from 5.75 to 7.5 is a 30% increase. Also keep in mind teachers work outside of school hours on grading, lesson planning, etc... If your company came to you and said your work week now must be 10.4 hours in the office instead of the normal 8, wouldn't you want a similar increase in salary?
David Gray I most definitely lean right. Thus why I voted for Bush twice and will vote for Romney this election. I am just not a partisan like you. I try to look at both sides of the aisle and come to a reasonable conclusion on what I believe should happen based on the facts as presented and the current situation. Partisans on the other hand look at one side of the aisle and only come to conclusions that back their own partisan point of view.
David Gray Yes you do Jesse. They just don't admit it. Anyone that proposes 'personhood' amendments and backs them knowing the consequences would do just that. Birth control pills and other forms of birth control have a secondary mechanism of action which prevents the implantation of zygotes into the uterus. For many, that is in essence an 'abortion' and thus they would ban anything that acts in that manner. In vitro fertilisation would also necessarily be banned under proposed 'personhood' amendments. So yes, while they do not come out and say so in public (because they know it would be the end of their political career), they do back policy proposals which would logically end that way. Some of these politicians are oblivious of the consequences, but many are not.
David Gray "No more police coming down and shutting down children's lemonade stands." You are right on there! The police will be too busy stopping LGBT's from getting married, women from getting birth control and abortions, and throwing the local neighborhood teenager in jail for smoking a joint.
David Gray I don't really see him as leftist either. I see Ben very similar to myself, except I would say he is a centrist that leans left, while I am a centrist that leans right. The one thing that keeps me away from being a partisan is that they are unwilling to look at both sides of the aisle with an equal viewpoint. It drives me nuts when a hardcore conservative cannot look rationally at the viewpoints and policy ideas from a hardcore liberal. Sure they have conflicting point of views, but they both have the same goals in mind, which is to make America a better place. That goal should bring the two sides together. Generally that goal has brought the two sides together to make great compromises (see the Reagan and Clinton years). Today though we have a situation where both sides refuse to cooperate with each other no matter what. That is the greatest threat our country faces today, the refusal to cooperate.
David Gray My guess is that polling will be significant from here on out, but not exactly in the way people are claiming. The polls next week (2 weeks after the last convention) will serve as a starting point. From then on out, weekly polling will trend one way or another. The trend will be the key. Does Obama start to trend up or down? What about Romney? I put more faith in the trend line than the actual raw numbers because the trend has more of an impact come election day. These last two months are crunch time. Elections can and have swung wildly during this time-frame in the past. It would not surprise me to see this happen again.
David Gray Great idea! Let's do that for everything! Constitutional amendments are not required for anything and everything not specifically mentioned in the Constitution. The Supreme Court has upheld that notion for decades so don't fool yourself into thinking otherwise.
David Gray Every page I load on PM takes a longtime to load, locks up the browser (Firefox), and sometimes gets an Unresponsive Script error. Once the page loads all the way everything is fine, but it takes a while to load (30-60 seconds). Not sure what is causing this. I have been noticing this for about a week and a half or so (maybe longer). At first I thought the problem was due to a specific PC, but the problem also occurred on another PC with a 30Mbps connection so it has to be something coming from PM. Another note, this problem does not occur when viewing on the iPad, which makes me believe it might be Flash related.