Is a New Rouge Army at Work in US Schools?

March 7, 2010
By John

I was watching the local news Thursday night – something I seldom do because it is usually not informative – and learned that there were around 100 protests around the nation against public education budget cuts.  They got a good amount of coverage by the local and national press, and were almost uniformly presented as understandable reactions to state and local budget cuts that have hit public schools and universities in the last two years.   The protestors were portrayed as being affected students and teachers, but we didn’t learn much about who actually organized these events. 

According to  news reports, teachers in many districts encouraged their secondary and university students to ‘go on strike’ on March 4 and join in these events.   The San Francisco Chronicle reported that “many elected officials, including Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, responded with statements of support for the protesters.  A spokesman for Schwarzenegger said he wanted a constitutional amendment guaranteeing that higher education received more funding than the state’s prison system.” 

Who Really Shut Down I-880?

In some places, notably the Bay Area, the protests got a bit out of control.  For example, in Berkeley, California, protesters crowded across a major freeway that runs along the bay (I-880), and shut down traffic.  The ensuing back-up caused traffic snarls all around the already congested bay as the police struggled to get the protesters off of jammed freeways.  And another group of protesters (proudly) managed close down the University of California at Santa Cruz for the day.  A cursory scan of the news shows there were similar protests around the country – although most were not as disruptive.

Did a Bunch of Kids Really Do This? 

As I watched these reports – something didn’t sound right to me.   How could a bunch of high school and college kids get organized to run a coordinated series of protests around the nation?   Why would state employees (teachers and professors) encourage students to leave school, and why weren’t they  reprimanded?  Who was behind this? 

I checked a bunch of media sources – CNN.com, the Los Angeles Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the SF Chronicle and other ‘legitimate’ news media – and found little or no mention of who organized these events.    Instead, the protests were presented as a student led, semi-spontaneous series of complaints directed at state and university officials who are busy cutting costs and raising tuition in the face of budget crises spreading across the country. 

But Google is a great rapid research tool.  I started clinking on links in the stories, and found there were quite a few organizing sites around the nation.  It turns out they have a lot in common in messaging, in interlocking sponsors, and in their revolutionary rhetoric and artwork.   Even the site designers had revolutionary names like ‘Radical Designs’.  It was strikingly consistent. 

A Radical Network of Public Employee Unions, Educators, Students and Socialists Goes Public 

As best I can discern from a couple of hours of poking around, it looks like these events (and there are more planned) and their sponsors are all connected to a couple of  ‘brands’. 

  • One is called ‘The National Day for Education Action’.  You can learn about the group behind it at the website http://www.defendeducation.org/.  The name sounds innocent enough – but a quick look at their site and their sponsors paints a more disturbing picture.  The site is has a Che Guevera feel to it – and reminds me of the propaganda communist groups used to hand out when I attended UC Berkeley in the 1970’s.  It lists a potpourri of radical groups as sponsors – from Mecha to SDS to the Texas State Employees Union and the Socialist Party USA.   Not an attractive crowd – but maybe they were just hopping on a more virtuous bandwagon?   I wish that were true – but they share a number of radical sponsors with the next brand I found.
  • The ‘founders’ of this day of protest called it March Forth (other sites around the nation used the term March Fourth instead – but they all appear to have the same roots).  According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the idea for a March Forth protest was hatched in (surprise!) Berkeley, California last Fall, and they set up a wordpress site to promote the idea and acknowledge sponsors at  http://defendcapubliceducation.wordpress.com/.   Look at who they list as supporters:
Trade Unions Socialist/Communist/Radical Advocacy Groups   (click on each name for web link) Other (left-leaning) Organizations
Statewide Coalition of University Employees Solidarity Alliance at UCB General Assembly at UC Berkeley
Statewide UPTE Association of Raza Educators Student Senate for California Community Colleges
California Federation of Teachers Movement for a Democratic Society (MDS) Coalition for Equal Quality Education
United Teachers – Los Angeles Coordinating Committee of United Students Against Sweatshops CUNY Campaign to Defend Education
AFSCME Local 444 International Socialist Organization California Partnership/Stop the Cuts Coalition
AFT 1021 Third World Assembly at UCB The Mount Diablo High School Site Action Council
California Labor Federation SWAT at UCB California Prison Moratorium Project
California Faculty Association Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration, and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary (BAMN) The 2009 National Assembly of US Labor Against the War
Carpenters Local 713 Rouge Forum  
SEIU 1000 Bay Area United Against War  
Oakland Education Association    
San Francisco Labor Council    
California State University Employees Union    
California Teachers Association    
Oakland AFT 771    
California State University Employees Union    
Academic Professionals of California    
SEIU 1021    
United Educators of San Francisco    
Peralta Federation of Teacher    

So what is going on here?  Are all these public employee unions in cahoots with radical socialist groups at work in the United States?  Is the media ignoring these obvious and public connections to radical groups when they report on supposedly student-led protests?  Are leading elected officials turning a blind eye to how avowedly radical groups are engaged in the operation of our schools and the manipulation of students? 

Yes, they are. 

Wishing This Was Just Paranoia 

Is the Faculty Leading a New Berkeley Revolution?

I don’t give much credence to proponents of black helicopter invasions, conspiracy theorists, or anti-government types.  I am a fierce advocate of finding comity amongst Americans, and for our Constitutional government.   But I do think there are serious differences of opinion in America, and that there are radical, statist agendas being openly pushed by the far left from our college campuses.  It was true when I was at Cal 30 years ago, and it is true today.  And they are organized, motivated, and looking for opportunities to advance their goals while a sympathetic government struggles with domestic and international instability. 

You don’t have to stretch too far to see that the leading advocates of these leftist agendas (err, scholarly research ‘discovering’ the virtues of the State) are safely ensconced in publicly funded sinecures – tenured professors, public school educators, union leaders, and bureaucrats across the education establishment.  And these people and their enabling organizations (public employee unions, primarily) are openly allied with admittedly socialist/communist groups.  All you have to do is look at their websites and those of the causes they support to see it.  They’re not hiding these direct connections – our media and politicians are just turning a blind eye to their existence. 

And so it was with the recent March Forth/March 4th/National Day for Education Action protests.  There were doubtless plenty of otherwise well intentioned young people at these events, but they were being played for what Lenin called Useful Idiots.  They are the tools of the most radicalized people in America – and they’re all part and parcel of the so-called Progressive Movement.   And it looks like they run many of our schools, are in bed with leading trade unions and are connected to elected officials of both parties. 

And yes, these radicals still call themselves Socialists and Communists – if you just take a look. 

 

Andy Stern and the Radicals: Who is Telling Who, What?

Post-Script:  a couple of the unions listed as supporting the events in California were SEIU chapters.   And isn’t that union’s President, Andy Stern, awfully close to the White House these days?   I’m not saying j ‘accuse yet – but I’m getting closer.. 

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6 Responses to “ Is a New Rouge Army at Work in US Schools? ”

  1. Bill Reeves on March 7, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    Well of course. Read Alinsky. Spelled Rogue, tho.

  2. Grocery Clerk on March 7, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Bill,

    I love ya, and I really love your blog. This, however, might be another one of those “often wrong” times.

    I believe John did mean rouge (read red) as in Kmer.
    And I know you know about them.

    G.C.

  3. Grocery Clerk on March 7, 2010 at 10:42 pm

    Pretty scary stuff. I clicked on as many as I could stand, ’till I could stand no more.

    What CAN we do to get the media to tell the country the truth?

    Sidenote to John – Outstanding work, again, but Google? Really??
    I suppose there is no alternative yet to the in-bed-with-the-ChiComs Google, but what are we going to do about that?

    If R Murdoch were smart, he would launch a conservative alternative to the tainted big G, but what do we want him for?
    I question his conservativsm, he’s not a true friend, and he isn’t even consistently the enemy of my enemy.

    Is there an alternative? Can Mobile Teks Help?

    We gotta start voting w/ our pocketbooks, but what to do when the game is rigged and it’s the only game in town?

    G.C.

    P.S. to Bill:
    Click on ‘Rouge Forum’
    Then tomorrow we’ll compare notes on whether we had nightmares or never slept at all.

  4. Grocery Clerk on March 8, 2010 at 11:09 am

    Also, John, let us refer to that awesome document, The Declaration.

    Even if these Zeroheads are (wrongly) convinced that education is a ‘right,’ we should be reminded that governments are instituted anong men to “SECURE” rights, not PROVIDE them.

    Perhaps you will be kind enough to post The Constitution, as well.
    There we will find that govt is to PROMOTE the general welfare, NOT provide it.

    Keep up the stellar work,
    G.C.

  5. JoJoTo4 on March 8, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    One of the sad things about education is that these students are very smart. But they can be swayed into thinking that their doing this in a just cause, when all their doing is following a cult. This has happened before and will happen again, history will repeat. They are hell bent on changing the world. Then when they hit the real world they find out that this is not the way we change things. Change happens slow and steady, if it’s wrong like our system is right now it takes awhile to get back to normal or it just doesn’t. It collapses and we start again with growing pains and all the hardship that goes along with it! The whole point is education is the key, but be educated not persuaded. Way to stir up the controversy JM it’s great. The English language has so many meanings for one word. (Rouge….. to put blush on the cheeks.) Rouge….Their job is to rouge up the war. To turn horror into cheering press releases! Way to go Holmes! You’re a great detective!

  6. Grocery Clerk on March 9, 2010 at 1:47 am

    Yes, JoJo, they are following a cult. Why did Marx want to get rid of God?

    Reason #1:
    When people stop believing in God they don’t believe in
    nothing; they will believe in ANYTHING.

    Reason #2:
    Please read The Declaration. And The Constitution.
    This country – the greatest in human history – was
    founded on the fundamental belief that our rights come
    from God, and are UNALIENABLE.

    Statists can’t tollerate God. There is no room for God in a govt that seeks to be THE provider of YOUR rights. YOU can’t be BORN w/ self-evident unalienable rights, the govt will TELL you what your rights are.

    It is easy to outsell God. He created us with only basic (limited) rights. Our rights are fundamental, logical, and there are logical trade-offs (consequences): Liberty (free will) requires personal responsibility and includes the right to fall on your ass. Or O.D. Or starve.

    It’s pretty easy to outsell that to children and whiners.

    Have you ever noticed what the Socialists promise? Nearly unlimited rights – provided by The Government.
    All the lemmings have to do is help the statists acquire absolute power, THEN the gravy train will start to flow.

    Does it ever work out that way? Has it ever? Ever?
    I know the history of Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea and the Eastern Bloc make for some pretty heavy reading,
    Have you read Animal Farm?

    How did free health care work out for Boxer the Horse?

    Remember, in a society where free food from government is a ‘right’, Soylent Green is people.

    Can we get the lemmings to ruminate on that?
    G.C.

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