[New Action] want[s] democracy except where it interferes with their keeping seats on the Exec. Board. Unfortunately democracy is not something we grant when it serves us, and deny when it doesn't. I would be happy to work toward democracy with New Action. The very best thing New Action could do would be to ally with MORE and work toward democracy across the board.... NYC Educator, New Action Takes a Position on Semi-Democracy
When Mike Schirtzer sent around a piece from New Action (I didn't even know they had a functioning blog) last night on how they support democracy, I laughed out loud -- louder than at anything I saw on Letterman's last show, which I was watching at the time.
More from Arthur Goldstein-
New Action is now embracing democracy, and rejecting the winner take all mode that shuts out the activists who speak their minds rather than that of Big Brother, Randi Weingarten, or whoever the hell it is that makes the calamitous decisions that have led us to the lowest point in teacher morale I've ever seen. They've taken the same position this blog has taken for years--that high schools ought to select the high school VPs, that NYSUT and AFT reps ought to represent everyone, not just those who sign oaths to vote as told, and that chapter leaders ought to select the District Reps who will support them.Some facts on how New Action, working with Unity, subverts democracy in the UFT by keeping MORE, which got more votes than New Action in the last election, off the Exec Bd while New Action gets 10 seats via also have those 10 candidates run on the Unity slate. All they have to do in exchange is run Mulgrew (and Weingarten before him) as their presidential candidate.
For instance, MORE received almost 40% of the High School Ex Bd votes in the 2013 election -- 1335 and New Action around 700. Unity got around 1590. Do the math.
MORE got NO high school seats on the Exec Bd while New Action and Unity split the 7 HS seats between them.
If New Action were not a dishonest organization, putting up a phony piece on how they are for democracy, since they supposedly believe in proportional representation for AFT/NYSUT delegates, they should offer to turn over 40% of the high school ex bd seats to MORE.
Or better yet, let New Action renounce its deal with Unity and rejoin the world of the opposition.
I would be happy to work toward democracy with New Action. The very best thing New Action could do would be to ally with MORE and work toward democracy across the board. Our union has been unsuccessful in mobilizing membership, fighting apathy and cynicism, and that's why the overwhelming majority of members don't find it worth their while to even vote in union elections.Despite the hectoring from New Action pal Francesco Portelos who has built his house of cards on an alliance with New Action, MORE has made it clear. It will work with New Action in partnership when they stop working in partnership with Michael Mulgrew and Unity Caucus.
It's time for leadership to stop building brick walls around opposition voices. I will help with that, if they choose. And if New Action wants to genuinely work toward that, I'll help with that too.