Wednesday, March 30, 2016

History Lesson: ICE Caucus easily got more than 40 people to run in 2004 UFT elections 2 months after forming

If I decided to form the Caucus of Norm could I find 40 people to run with me? I bet I could.

Over the past week a number of people have commented that they could get 40 in their own school to run. Even though I've been retired for 14 years I believe that if I formed my own caucus I could manage to get at least 40 people to run with me. And without much sturm and drang.

I believe getting people to put their names on a UFT election slate often boils down to trust. Back in 2003/4 when ICE formed as a new caucus - October 30 2003 - we had basically 2 months to recruit a slate and had no trouble doing so and forming pretty much a fairly full executive board slate. And we had competition from both New Action and TJC - we only ran the 6 high school candidates - which we won - together and separate slates otherwise.

So in the 2004 UFT election TJC, ICE and New Action all had at least 40 and never once questioned that that number was somehow unfair.

And look at the times - Bloomberg had just begun his assault and the 2005 contract had not been signed. So I would say the level of disaffection with the UFT was not nearly as large as it is today. So if in these times of massive sellout by the union leadership, not being able to get even 40 candidates tells a story of a serious failure on some level. But we will address that at a future point.

I never had any doubts that ICE would be able to fill the 40 candidate limit (memory is soft and I'm too lazy to look it up but I think we got around 80 in 2 months).

Ever since Unity reduced a higher number to 40 decades ago some opposition viewed this reduction as a Unity faux democracy plot to make it easy for other caucuses to form and split the opposition. While 40 can seem like an arbitrary number it at least forces people to organize. I never had a problem with many caucuses running in the past because no one could win anyway. If each caucus developed its own constituency at some point there would be a coming together as happened with TAC/New Directions = New Action in 1995 and ICE/TJC = MORE in 2012 and the longer term prospect that MORE/New Action might come together.

I went back to my old school in early 2004, which I had left in 1997, to see if anyone wanted to run. Eight people signed up in a half hour and I stopped asking because I didn't want to overload the slate with one school.

People still had enough trust in me to join the ICE slate and some still did so in the 2007 election, 10 years after I was out of the school.

MORE and New Action are running 300 candidates, of which about 180 come from MORE. I know New Action could have signed up 100 more and so could have MORE but we decided to save some trees. If you do the math that is 10 times the number of any other non-Unity caucus (which has 800 people running).

If a group of people can't recruit even 40 people to sign up to run after 8 months of trying what exactly does that say after you wade through all the noise?



65 comments:

  1. I could have gone to a Kindergarten class in any NYC school and found a little guy or girl to have the ability to find 40 candidates.

    Heck, the Kindergartner would know that once you agree to the rule, themz da rules.

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  2. Too bad from a sociological pov. I am a UNITY stalwart. I don't believe M/NA victory in hs exec board seats is a disaster. Exec board will be dull if we win it all. But I was curious to see how many members would vote Solidarity. Obviously M/NA are dedicated idealists, deserving of respect, with whom I disagree on many issues. But Solidarity is deserving of no such respect. Had that bogus slate drawn significant support, it would have said much about the make-up of anti-unity --and anti-M/NA -- vote. Now, with no third slate, it's all a muddle. But, more legitimate, obviously.

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    1. People can still vote Solidarity. Your caucus has decided to put that designation next to each candidate and also has given them the same 2 page add in the NY Teacher as Unity and MORE/NA.
      There are 2 kinds of anti-Unity voters. Those who know what they are voting for and those who just want to pick an opposition caucus even if they don't know much about either one.
      So we can look at the MORE/NA vote totals in the end and extrapolate a certain per centage might have gone to Solidarity if they were on the front page. Either way it wouldn't make much difference other than the high schools. Some angry people, of which there are many, will go and vote for Portelos even though it is a bit more trouble to do so.
      I don't think that is a bad thing per se as it is still an anti-Unity vote - other than if a lot of high school people do it. But then again this makes it easier for them to vote for Portelos and for the MORE high school people. And I bet some will.
      As for MORE/NA on the Ex Bd - that is the best thing that could happen to Unity as it gives you faux cover of democracy. Otherwise Unity would have 100% of the EB for the first time since the 93 election and before that 1989. Putin is drooling.

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  3. They had more than 40 candidates, but only 33 signatures. Someone from NA made a stink about it, very democratically and in NA's best interest, of course. They'll be plenty of people voting for Solidarity. Petty post, really beneath you Norm.

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    1. You seem to think Norm should just let the Solidarity asinine attacks on MORE go unanswered? From what I heard through the scuttlebutt Unity ran a meeting of the election committee and never once even told New Action or MORE that Portelos didn't have the 40 for the slate. It was only as the meeting was ending that they even noticed it. What does that say to you? Go back to that meeting Portelos had with Randy before forming his caucus a week later and put things together. Unity was ready to put him on and still made sure to give him a full and equal ad in the NY Teacher. And see how the Solidarity trolls only attack MORE and Jia and leave Mulgrew and Unity alone. They are doing the Unity dirty work for them. Don't forget that meeting with Randi before he formed his caucus. My guess is that Unity was going to put him on and then got cold feet over what MORE and New Action might do about it. Could they have gone to court and protested the outcome? Norm - what were they going to do?

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    2. Where in my comment do you see any attacks on MORE or Jia?

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  4. I'm encouraged to see a Unity voice who doesn't think diverse voice are a disaster. I wish there were more Unity members who thought that way. I know several Unity members for whom I have great respect. I know others who stereotype us and indulge in really nonsensical conversation with us. I've got respect for anyone who shows me respect, more or less, even though I may disagree with Unity as a group. I think we can certainly do more if we work together whenever possible.

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  5. We had over 100 candidates that wanted to run with Solidarity. The issue was signatures and the fact that the members of Solidarity do other things besides run for seats in the union. Solidarity is very active helping member fight back against the corruption in the DOE so that the members can protect their careers. More was off having happy hour signature parties while Solidarity was actually helping members. Also, MORE has the financial backing of special interests organizations outside of the DOE.
    I would also like to see if the rule that was used against UFT Solidarity was even in existence at the time that ICE was running in 2004. The rule is not in the UFT constitution and should not even exist. The fact that MORE NA are using an undemocratic rule that is against the principles that the UFT was founded on speaks volumes about where they stand as an organization. Funny how a group that claims to be about social justice is quick to let undemocratic rules stand, but then again if you pull the curtain back on More and see who is actually pulling the strings you would understand. You can't be for democratic principles and then go against those principles when it suits you and be seen as a real organization of the working class.
    Please use your name when you post so you can be called to stand by your statements. There are no Unity people posting here just More NA people acting like they are Unity to push a lie to the teachers
    Vote Solidarity in May for real change. Real democratic change.
    Portelos for UFT President

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    1. Hey Hinesly. Did you ever think that people in MORE actually work in schools teaching and active at their own workplace?
      And they don't run around making public pronouncements every time they support people in their schools and out. You guys seem to want to protest principals but not in your schools. You all must work for wonderful principals because we don't hear a lot about them. And how come you accepted the 40 candidate limit in the first place? That rule has been in effect for decades. No one who intended to run every considered that they could not get 40 candidates at the minimum. ICE got 80 after 2 months. Portelos has been out there organizing this campaign for a year and a half. You're just making bullshit excuses for either being incompetent as a caucus or worse, expecting that Unity would just let you in no matter how many rules you broke. MORE and New Action should have challenged your signatures. If Portelos really had 1200 why didn't he just have 100 of them sign the other petitions of all those people clamoring to run with you? Getting petitions done the right way is rule number 1 if you want to be taken seriously as a caucus. Wasn't Portelos involved in the MORE 2013 campaign and knew what we had to do - and should have paid attention or else he didn't think he had to. Could the answer be that Portelos worked very hard to make sure he was on the ballot and didn't give much of a shit about the rest of you?

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    2. Why didn't MORE and New Action challenge the 1200 signatures and knock him off the ballot completely?

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    3. Johnathan, come on. I am surprised with you. You are smarter than this. You had a representative on election committee, he agreed to the 40 candidates minimum for a slate vote. You guys screwed up and didn't qualify for that. To buy your leader's reasoning for that it was a conspiracy between Kit and Shulman is not only disingenuous, but someone's complete fantastical excuses to show that the Leader is not butt naked. Why not look inward and see why and where Solidarity failed.

      So we were having happy hour signature parties. You guys have happy hours, why not collect signatures at those? Oh, because no one shows.

      One hundred other candidate are also spending all their time on members needs? Please, I'm calling bullocks. You were able to to get over the 900 signatures for officers, surely those signing for the officers could have signed for the other 67 candidates you allegedly purport to have had.

      Everything is done at Solidarity by one person, for the glory of one person.

      You followed someone who sold you a bill of goods claiming victory since June of last year. It's time to move on.

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    4. I did protest my principal and I am fighting the corruption in all schools any way that I can. Please use your name when you post, so I can know who I am addressing.

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    5. Are you this taken aback when Solidarity followers including your leader post anonymously here and on other blogs?

      No one says you don't fight the good fight but what Solidarity has yet to figure is when to use a sledge hammer and when to use a chisel.

      But please stop complaining about you guys lack of having a slate ballot Look inward and see why it didn't happen. You got caught with your knickers down.

      Just as curious, why the deep secret as to who is running for exec boards? Doesn't the rank and file have a right to know?

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    6. I bet you can't name those 100 people. Of course you could have gotten the signatures. If Porty got 1200 for himself they could have also signed the petitions for these mythical 100 people. The real story is you are selling fear and people do not want their names associated with your leader on a ballot.

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    7. More and na sent out the same run with us request so please stop the bs mr raccoon.

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    8. Sam run? Press run? I saw both ads, if I was a neutral observer this is what I do. I google Porty and Solidarity and learn the truth and see what lies underneath. I then google the rest of the so called officers and see what they have accomplished which to use a Yiddish phrase is bupkus.

      I then wonder, hmmm, does Solidarity have anyone or anyone of note running for executive boards. I see neither. That is unless I am a non-UFT member which so many of your 75 members are.

      What compelling reason, using actual accomplishments and/or having affected some sort of change or true organizational skills has Solidarity been part of?

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  6. Reading this post seems like a ridiculous way to spend my time. Of course Solidarity had way more than 40 candidates running on the slate. But at the end of the process, only 33 were accepted. I usually try to look up to veteran teachers who have been there before me, but this election has taught me a lot...especially about how PETTY some individuals are. How silly is it to write more than 25 words on this topic when there is so much going wrong in education? Who is attracted to reading this foolishness? What is sad is I know that many people spending time writing this stuff actually misrepresent the people who are working to make a difference. So I still stand by Solidarity regardless of how Easy-Peasy it was for you to get 40 people. How glorious for you. Point taken.

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    1. Well no one forced you to spend a ridiculous amount of time reading this rag. Maybe you shouldn't waste your time stopping by anymore because there is a lot more history coming. I notice you didn't complain about needing 100 signatures which is not in the constitution either. Why not complain and say you should need only 10 signatures if that is the reason your candidates didn't get on? Or maybe only 3 people to run a slate. And how about needing 900 for the officers. No complaints since you claim you got them. But if you didn't you guys would be wailing about how unfair needing 900 was. Note that you claim Unity wanted to let you on. What exactly does that say about the fact that Unity wanted you on the ballot? I guess because they are so democratic.

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    2. Ms Vickers...

      You are not even a UFT member.

      When I was 12 years old I meant to sell 100 cans of Macaroons and other Passover goodies for my synagogue. If I had I would have won a red white and blue ABA basketball. I meant to sell one hundred cans, but I was too busy watching TV and playing with my friends after school. Instead I sold 33 and had won only a Duncan yo-yo with a Chai on it. Thinking back, I should have kvetched enough to the rabbi and told him that I MEANT to sell 100 cans and that way I would have gotten a basketball.

      Speaking of Jews, remember this Facebook post you as Solidarity media coordinator or director or lackey, you approved? http://www.southbronxschool.com/2015/08/can-jewish-educators-have-faith-in-uft.html Linked to one of the most vile, disgusting, anti-Semitic rants I had ever read in my life... https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/why-american-federation-teachers-promoting-israeli-apartheid

      Now yes, one can give you the benefit of the doubt that you didn't properly read the article, but, the dog whistle you used to describe Randi's trip to Israel, "...Randi knows which side her bresd is buttered," http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-lJQgAFAL3uY/VcTv3WikqSI/AAAAAAAADDY/7mq8cxG6o1Y/s1600/UFT_Solidarity.jpg clearly does not deserve the benefit of the doubt. American Jews have been dealing with this for years. Are our our allegiances to the US or to Israel? In fact through history Jews have had to deal with this question in one way or another, like during Nazi Germany. Are the Jews a Jew or a German first. That question and the anti-Semitism it spawned led to 6 million Jews killed. Nothing like a dog whistle to stir the pot and to show true colors.

      But where is the public apology from you and Solidarity for this post? Yes, there was an apology but it was private, not public. I think it is time for you and Solidarity to apologize publicly.

      The silence from you speaks volumes.

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    3. Are you running Christina? If not why not? Are you one of the people who couldn't get 100 signatures? Why didn't some of those 1200 who signed Portelos' petition sign yours? And didn't I see a whole piece much longer than 25 words on this subject on your site?

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    4. Best to leave Hitler references unsaid. They always serve to exaggerate a current wrong or minimize an iconic one.

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    5. I never find any of Norm's writing a waste of time to read. Some of his topics interest me more than others but I always find something to think about. In this particular post I learned that Unity lowered the numbered to 40. And I suspect that that was done to split the opposition. History often gives us context. Insulting Norm for what he chooses to write about and insulting those of us who are interested in what he has to say seems like a more accurate example of a waste of time. Norm writes a lot. He has covered every issue that is important in education today and he has provided context for his readers when he writes of labor and caucus histories. I do not understand Solidarity's anger toward MORE. You guys sound like sore losers to me. You knew the rules. You didn't follow them so you didn't get your slate on the ballot. How is this anyone's fault but your own? MORE gets to engage with whomever they choose to engage with. Your anger and insults are a turn off....and trust me when I say I am not easily turned off by anger and insults. Why should MORE engage with or debate people who are behaving no better than a rabid racoon? MORE doesn't seem to want to play with you so maybe it's best to just take your ball and go home. Roseanne McCosh

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    6. Roseanne, Ever go to a MORE meeting? Try it a few times, watch the action (or inaction) that follows, then we can maybe talk about "wasted time."

      We are not taking our ball and going home. We are dribbling and asking the ones sitting on the bleachers yelling to "come to the court and play."

      Example for you Roseanne: Let's say Principal Claudia Tahiraj-Sadrija starts to engage in attacks on your coworkers, or even you. Call or email MORE, go to their website, or go to their meeting and ask for help. If you get a response it might be something like "Students are MORE than a score!!!" To which you might respond "What are you talking about? This isn't about testing. I'm targeted and the Bronx UFT sucks." Then MORE would respond "MORE teaching, less testing!!!"

      In other words, good luck. Contact UFT Solidarity and you will get a different response. In fact let me tell you a little secret...When MORE members, or their colleagues, are in trouble, guess who they still contact. If you guessed Solidarity, then you are correct. Sometimes a rabid raccoon is more effective in fending off attacks than a litter of cute little hamsters.

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    7. Yes Roseanne. The response you would get is to have 5 people show up outside your school for a Portelos photo op and then disappear. Have him point to even one successful outcome. MORE members have actually helped get rid of some principals by working behind the scenes by the use of their members' blogs. MORE members, many of whom are chapter leaders elected by hundreds of people in their schools have gotten ATRs jobs and off the ATR list in their schools. MORE continues to meet with teachers from schools under attack by their principal secretly in order to protect them and help them build up their ability to stand up in their schools. We are not interested in using them for our own purposes which is why we don't publicize these meetings. In fact MORE held one such meeting this past week with a group of 6 teachers who are ready to act and organize and help them develop a strategy so they can fight their own battles.
      People run away from rabid raccoons which is what whatever actions Solidarity has engaged in have been so poorly attended.
      You won't see 4 MORE members standing outside that school for a photo op.
      MORE doesn't ask for credit or use the schools as a way to claim personal glory or to promote MORE but to genuinely try to help and support.
      Note how some so-called anonymous MORE members to go to Solidarity for so-called help but Portelos can't point to any help they have received or even name them. I can name at least one former Solidarity member who came to MORE for help and received so much help he has abandoned Solidarity and is now with MORE. Show one former MORE member willing to run with Solidarity. You mean they fear the cute little hamsters? The reason so few people are willing to run with te rabid racoon is they don't want to catch rabies.

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    8. Who is the former Solidarity member? Only know of some who are in both caucuses.

      We can name? Want us to name?

      Ask Gloria. Ask Arthur. Ask Patrick and Francesca Gomes.

      Maybe you didn't read our post about PS 89 x rally where the Principal, a few days before the rally, made 30+ changes to fall into compliance.

      http://www.uftsolidarity.org/bronx-uft-chapter-leaders-review-of-uft-solidaritys-rally-at-ps-89-x-voice-to-the-voiceless/

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    9. Rosanne, go to a Solidarity meeting and see the vast emptiness there. See the lack of people showing up. See and hear the same, record, file a FOIL, we'll have a rally of 4 people showing, blah, blah, blah.

      MORE does more (pardon the pun). MORE looks at the entire person and seeks to help the person, to do what's best by and for that person. Each persons situation is different. I've seen MORE members help and actually accomplish something. Solidarity has not accomplished squat.

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    10. Yes Roseanne go to a Solidarity meeting if you can find one. They are as rare as the dodo bird. And when held so poorly attended they can hold them in a closet.

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    11. The Portelos attacks on MORE are revealing. Their meetings suck. They don't do anything but talk and have happy hours. Their presidential candidate is not a rabid dog and to boot a chapter leader in a small school and left an abusive principal for a better school. They don't respond to requests from him to work with him. The only thing he hasn't charged them with yet is being a tool of Unity out to undermine his caucus, the "real" opposition.

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    12. On second thought think about my last point. Unity Caucus four years ago saw portelos coming and knowing he was a threat set up and funded MORE as a way to stop Portelos from gaining power. Makes perfect sense to me.

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    13. Did MORE have a meeting with Randi Weingarten in 2012 to plot this out?

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    14. MORE advertises its meetings and events and meets every single month. Meetings are not for everyone but is the only caucus in the union that is so open and welcoming. Francisco can't seem to stay away from MORE. He managed to survive when he came to our conference a few months ago and was treated with respect and the chapter leader training this past summer attended by 50 people - Did we run out to every school with a bad principal and hold a rally? No we have continued to offer support and help them on a continuing basis so that one day if they believe that holding a rally outside their school or someplace else is valuable. Our job is to stay in the background.
      If he wants to hold rallies go ahead but the attacks on MORE for not supporting his rallies are unwarranted for not doing something they don't believe has any value when implemented by an agent outside the school and not fully supported by people in the school. Right now we are working with a group of people at a school where the outcome has the potential to turn into a massive event. Given that one of the objects is to force the UFT into supporting this you will not see MORE's name associated with this event until after it takes place and even then in a very low-key way so as not to supersede the people in the school. Promoting MORE is not the major object. I wouldn't even mention this if not for these outrageous attacks for us supposedly not doing this work.

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    15. Mr. Portelos: This is where you lose all credibility with me. If my principal, Claudia, goes on the attack, I have no doubt I would receive support from Norm and MORE. There is no way in hell Norm or Mike or Jia would talk to me about students and test scores if I reached out to them about an abusive administrator. We've been lucky at PS 8. Claudia took the helm this year and prior to her being in charge we had another principal (Rosa --now retired) who was also a decent human being. But we have had our share of troublesome APs which we as a staff, led by a chapter leader who joined MORE, have dealt with. The troublesome APs are no longer with us for various reasons. We could not have successfully dealt with the AP situation if we didn’t have some kind of an infrastructure in place at PS 8 to do so. And this seems to be the point you miss with MORE. Having a handful of strangers from Solidarity rally outside of our school while we remained silent and cowering inside would have sent the message that we the staff of PS 8 were too afraid to fight our own battles. And that would have been a nail in our coffin. Instead we tried to unite our staff. We held a union meeting, invited our Dist Rep and openly complained about 2 specific APs who were not treating teachers fairly. The topic of the meeting was no secret. In fact, Claudia was my AP at the time and I let her know that I could not in all good conscience remain silent when I witnessed unfair treatment of my colleagues by other APs. Everything was out in the open. This is also part of proper infrastructure. Individuals do not need to hide when they are under attack or if, like me, they witness abuse and want to speak out. We encourage teachers to come together and present a united front. One brave teacher, who was unfairly targeted, fought the lion’s share of the battle and she did so because she knew she had some key people (colleagues) in her school to back her up. Part of the infrastructure was being honest with this brave teacher, offering to fight right alongside her and helping her with a war strategy. We key people specifically told her not to engage in battle with her AP unless she was committed to going to the mattresses. We assured her if she went down we were going down with her….and we meant it. She committed to the fight. We helped her revise and edit written communication to admin. We also went forward with the offensive strategy of breaking the APs will to fight. We key people were relentless and committed to spinning the AP’s head every chance we got. The AP is gone and the brave teacher is still with us. There were other factors involved. I will never know how much of an effect our actions had on the AP leaving but this brave young teacher was made stronger after a year of hell and her ratings from her AP certainly improved once we engaged in battle. She, as part of the next generation of union members, learned there is strength in sticking together and that, as I see it, is one of MORE’s messages. Build the confidence and activism of the membership necessary for us being a powerful and united front. MORE has the right to stand on a social justice platform and talk about students’ needs whether you agree with it or not. It doesn’t mean they aren’t committed to uniting teachers to fight against abusive administrators. And re your point about raccoons and hamsters: Teachers are not under attack from MORE. However, if teachers are in need of an animal defense I’d go with a highly trained dog who is disciplined enough to refrain from biting every leg that wanders in front of its mouth. MORE fits that description. Solidarity does not. Roseanne McCosh

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    16. Francesco: I call bs. I would never have asked you for help, mainly because you can't ever think things through before barreling into a situation sometimes making it worse. Maybe you figure me telling you a story at some social gathering was begging for your help? It wasn't.

      Am I scared of the fraudulent emails you might compose and add my name to? Meh. Course, anything you do in retaliation will just go a long way to showing how much "Solidarity" tries to help teachers. Which is more important? Your ethics as a UFT member or your personal vendettas?

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  7. If Solidarity supporters are obsessed with Francesco Portelos...then what does that make you or the people who constantly spend late nights writing about exactly which foot he started to walk on...the left foot? Or the right foot?

    Some of you have a personal problem with the man that you are letting cloud your judgement and your actions. I personally don't think about More or Néw Action except when another piece of your Internet smut is brought to my attention. And in such instances, I am only motivated to work harder on behalf of teachers.

    So really, I actually thank you for writing about F.P. because it shows the power of UFT Solidarity. Clearly our group is at the tip of your tongue -- despite your silence when we respectfully approach you to do anything productive.

    What's wrong? Is there not enough work or advocacy to go around? Are there not enough teachers to be helped? Not enough problems to be solved? What is the problem, then, of another organization forming to solve the education CRISIS we have in NYC and across the country?

    Solidarity never intended to edge anybody out. We extended a hand to New Action and More on multiple occassions for the greater good. We did not have to agree to everything but we could agree

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    1. Christina - Have you noticed how many comments from your leader? Who has the obsession?

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    2. You miss the point. What no one could agree on is the poison pill. You.

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  8. Yes. I believe a debate is one of the most democratic things candidates for office can engage in.This comment is not attack on Jia, MORE or New Action. I'm tired of Norm, Arthur, and especially Peter commenting on her, for her and about her. I and many want to hear from her. Debate. What's the big deal?

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    1. How did that debate work out when you rented Jia's school? 4 people showed up? Another Solidarity troll who only cares about a debate with Jia Lee and not Mulgrew who is not your real target. Look at the comments coming from Solidarity supporters and its leader - the target is Jia and MORE. Unity supports the Solidarity effort. Just look at that 2 page ad Unity gave you in the NY Teacher despite you not making caucus status.

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    2. What's the big deal? No one wants to be in the same room with this guy. Did you notice the marks on his head from the 10 foot poles?

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    3. What kind of comment is that? Who cares if you don't like him? Don't watch the debate.

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  9. We are a recognized caucus. You're confusing "slate" and "caucus." The 40 candidate rule is under BALLOTING in the election notice. The two page ad is under CAMPAIGNING. One has nothing to do with the other.

    Next, we "attack MORE and not Unity?" This is a race and we are looking to be the first to the finish line. We came in to beat Mulgrew and Unity, and once you entered we are going to beat you too. Stop crying. You sound like a child who is upset for getting wet after entering a water balloon fight.

    Our ballot candidate numbers are not indicative of out support. Our supporters are representative of the majority of members...want to work and then live their lives at home, not attend exec board meetings twice a month and conventions. I can't tell you how many times supporters responded with "I can't. I'm a single mom." or "I can't, I have two kids at home." MORE went around saying just sign up "don't worry, we are not going to win" so that does make it easier to collect candidates.

    In any case, like I said, we are going to beat you and we are going to beat you bad. It's too bad because we could have worked together. That decision not to was entirely yours.

    Chapter leader John Elfrank-Dana, is offering hosting a debate at Murray Bergtraum. Let's go. Come answer questions. Look at the unanswered questions Jia has here at www.uftsolidarity.org/debate

    Our town hall at Jia's school was for a backdrop for this video. https://vimeo.com/159626222

    PS: You keep stating Jia is great chapter leader, which we are not denying, but you didn't mention she has 20 members in her small school.

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    1. You worked under an abusive principal for 3 months before they rubber roomed you and fought your battles from the rubber room while Jia faced off with that principal for years and used her skills to protect as many people as she could. You were never a chapter leader facing daily observations and were able to take pot shots from the rubber room. Weren't you were pals with your principal and ignored her abuse of others because you needed her to help you get a recommendation for supervisor? How long were you her buddy? 5 years? In all your time in the school you actually fought your principal for a few months. The rest of the time the rabid raccoon was a good little butt boy. Your story has so much bullshit in it you could cover a football stadium with the manure.

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    2. Oh and speaking of testing... check out how many parents have used our www.optthemout.com site.

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    3. How come every parent in the opt out movement openly or behind the scenes support Jia Lee and MORE?

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    4. Norm. Porty is just using your site to promote his links. He knows you will publish all comments, unlike his censorship and control of his sites. You should delete his comments. Don't let him use you.

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    5. Francesco, I totally agree! Whether or not you can show you have enough support to qualify for slate status is irrelevant.

      Let me tell you something: I'm an Olympic athlete. I mean, no one's ever actually seen me do a great job at anything, and no, I didn't go to the qualification meet, thank you very much! I was too busy working on my floor routine (unlike those other lazy jerks who seem to have all the time in the world to go sign up for competitions and enter on time). I'm a REAL athlete.

      Regardless, I will beat every other Olympic gymnast from every other country. They say I can't be seated for the Olympics because I didn't qualify nationally, but come on... it's SO obvious that they're only keeping me out of this competition because they're terrified of me winning. But that won't stop me! Make no mistake, I am adored by throngs of thousands! Just because none of those people are willing to sign or show up for anything doesn't mean they don't exist.

      You'll see! I'll make you all see! I will crush every other (qualified) athlete in this competition. I was competing first and then a bunch of people had the nerve to come along and qualify, so now I will beat them, too!

      - Your Fellow Rabid Raccoon

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    6. @Rabid Racoon

      ROTFLMFAOBYMPLLATWDDWSIHV!!!!

      Delete
  10. Again, no one is answering the simple question: "What does MORE do?"

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  11. Good point. Portelos NEVER would be where he is know without those three months.

    Portelos, this is an incredible bit of fiction http://i25.photobucket.com/albums/c96/paz2112/ How do you conjure up such fantastical stories?

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    1. I guess all the posts above this one about MORE members, you know, doing stuff, don't count because if Portelos wasn't there it didn't happen.

      Delete
  12. Last thing and then I have to start the weekend.

    I did go to your conference. I sat in a "Union Democracy" meeting, only to see MORE do little to remedy it. Of course now they made it worse. I sat in a "Probationary Teacher Discontinuance meeting" only to see nothing come of it. In fact the next day I emailed every New Action /MORE member in the room to come support the Probationary teachers at the next PEP the following Wednesday. Crickets.

    NOrm, I'm sorry, but this group has also failed. Its not entirely your fault. Unity is your Moby Dick and you spent 40+ years unsuccessfully ousting them. I get it it. You're angry. Like ICE founders told me "You are MORE's whipping boy because they have failed again."

    Save the date: May 7th at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis HS from 10AM to 1PM. UFT Solidarity, and other groups will be hosting a Corruption and Harassment in NYC Education Conference. Panel, workshops etc. Join us. Don't get burnt...get ignited.

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    1. I'm going to give you an honest response here though I don't think it will have any impact on you.

      You miss the major work people in MORE are doing.
      In their own schools and chapters which is the focus of their work and giving people they work with support. you don't seem to think that the internal organizing work in a school is real work -or that happy hours/local meetings are a way to get local people who won't come to central meetings out for future organizing - and the fact that as a result we have been building a real distribution network as a result is part of the work.
      In addition to full-time teaching.
      And many with families who get their priority.
      I have pushed people not to run all over the place and stay local and build in the school and neighboring communities where they live and teach. That is our long-term solution to attacking the Unity machine - you do it your way and we will do it ours.
      So your attacks on MORE for not doing what you think MORE should be doing is propaganda. I've done everything you have done in the past so I know how that movie ends but you will learn one day - hopefully sooner rather than later that calling rallies without doing a lot of internal local organizing and hoping that by using social media you will have an impact is a dead end.
      Been there done that at PEP since 2004. You are very late to that game and I see even you have abandoned the PEP strategy. I would only use that when I know we can come out with hundreds like Eva does.
      I have learned enough as to what doesn't work. Your going to the PEP event had precisely what impact? You have been chasing all kinds of wild geese. Throw it up against a wall and see if it sticks. I get it - you are desperately trying to find something that works.
      I don't believe in the Einstein definition of insanity - doing the same thing over again.

      I am MORE's whipping boy? I have never been more satisfied with MORE than I currently am and you know I was a major critic in the early years and shared some of my reasons with you. In fact some people in MORE began to see what wasn't working and what was working and MORE is a very different group that it was even a year ago.

      I have finally learned that trying to put all these groups and people together like ICE and TJC people and getting it all to work takes some time and maturity. It took us years of working and fighting together to develop the trust in each other needed. Just look at so many ICE people who you thought you could woo away from MORE who were not enthralled and have come around enthusiastically. You claim ICE people support you but where are they? The entire core of ICE is running with MORE not you.
      There is a sense of balance in MORE that was not there before.

      And some shaking out of people who are not comfortable working things through - and yes it does take some talking to each other and at times doing less to get things moving. I learned you can't change people with bombast and bullying - and attacking - I have been guilty of that myself and am learning to control my impulsive behavior and am proud of myself in not taking out the flamethrower until it is absolutely necessary.

      MORE has morphed into a more effective group than any caucus I have been in and has some very new people who are taking on a bog role - I am a minor player and really like it that way. The election campaign this year I had to do so much less than before - like focus on petitions and organizing the candidates -- ooops! sorry to bring up a sore point.

      Things might have worked out better if you had just done your thing with Solidarity and left MORE people alone and stopped badgering us to work with you.
      My advice is to leave MORE alone and go and do your thing. Other than a very few people who had some connections to you the bulk of MORE is not interested in you or what you are doing and want to focus on what they are doing. After the elections you can start your Poretlos2019 and maybe 2022 campaigns.

      Delete
    2. More Porty nonsense Norm. You are wasting your time with an honest response. What has he done to remedy democracy other than try to make a sham of it by first agreeing to a 40 candidate threshold to run a slate and then crying that it was undemocratic when a rule all caucuses had agreed to was enforced. I noticed them whining about having all these people who wanted to run but didn't get the signature. Are those signatures in the constitution? Why not complain that you should only need 20 to run and threaten to go to court to challenge that?
      His May 7 event is sure to remedy things. Let him point to one thing he has remedied.

      Delete
    3. I see it all now. Portelos can be the Harold Stassen of UFT.

      Delete
  13. Hmm, Solidarity with other groups, or is it is other groups are doing this and you bogarted your way into it? Think it's the latter.

    Using your logic MORE can say they and the CTU joined forces yesterday in the strike.

    BTW, why aren't you in Chicago supporting CTU? Surely, you could've found a camera to focus on you.

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    1. You and Fran should just shake hands and agree to disagree. I used to like your blog Pete and I stopped reading it because it has degenerated into one vitriolic diatribe against Portelos and Solidarity.

      Delete
    2. Fran is pretty good on vitriolic diatribe and not much else. I never used to read Pete's blog but now read it religiously, since he's the only blogger who tells the truth about Fran. I'm pretty surprised that most don't bother mentioning him at all. But Norm did a pretty good job right here too.

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    3. Anon 4:45 - apparently you can't stay away. do yourself and norm and peter a favor and stop reading their blogs. after all the things porty has said attacking more your comment they should shake hands makes you so clueless. want to buy a bridge?

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    4. Fran doesn't attack anyone. You're just another mindless MORE drone. "Don't mention Jia name unless you whisper it on your knees. Or it'll be considered an attack against the Social Goddess of Justice. Make "Want to buy a bridge?" the MORE/NA slogan. It sounds much better than its current one - no wait I don't know their slogan.

      Delete
  14. Wow. Name calling and we don't attack anyone. Very persuasive.

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    1. I didn't say We or Me, I said Fran. Reading is fundamental, and a Goddess is not name calling - it's a reference to how you Nebbish sycophants regard Jia.

      Delete
  15. Anonymous 3:07. Which member of The Family are you? Tex? Squeaky? Susan? Patricia? Linda? Leslie? Clem?

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  16. I'm the angel, Ringo. Thanks for asking Charles.

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