Sunday, March 24, 2013

Unity Slugs Attack Julie Cavanagh as Candidate After She Misses DA Due to Sick Child

There is no little irony in these Unity Caucus attacks on parents of young children as somehow not being qualified to serve in high union positions.
I have to say I am disgusted by the petty and personal attacks against a young mother on this forum ---There are few as poised and articulate as Julie Cavanagh. It's pretty hard to get pro-teacher pieces published in the Daily News. Julie's done that. It's pretty hard to be brilliant and articulate enough to narrate a film. Julie's done that too. I've met Julie, and I knew right away how smart she was. I'm very sorry some small-minded individuals have decided to target her. --- Arthur Goldstein on ICE blog.

... she's running for the grueling, time consuming position of UFT president. That's pretty much being on call 24-7. Maybe she shouldn't be pursuing this right now. Seriously, I hope everything is ok with her baby, but, how often does that happen? And, would it be a valid excuse to blow off the mayor with?----- Unity Hack comments on ICE blog.
Get rid of it --- Bloomberg to pregnant employees.
Arthur is responding to some of the comments Unity slugs are leaving on the ICE blog so typical of the attacks made on women for eons.

Given such major stories as new Yahoo chief Marissa Mayer with a young child less than 3 months younger than Jack (On the same day "Yahoo!" announced her hiring - Mayer revealed that she was pregnant. Mayer gave birth to a baby boy on September 30, 2012) ----

-----these Unity hacks are beyond boundaries when it comes to defending their perks and positions from the MORE threat. (Note the silence of the New Action lambs -- and one day I'll get into the male dominance thing in New Action.)

Of course the Unity hack then engaged in a personal attack on Arthur:
Arthur, stop being a wordy blowhard.

Arthur responded: Frankly, your inability to engage in civil discussion suggests you are not a teacher remotely like me.

Then a hack asked: Has MORE's candidate, Brian Jones, been attending the DAs?

Brian is not a delegate or chapter leader and is on child care and study leave.

That's 2 Unity attacks on MORE candidates who are parents of young children. By the way, these are the same 2 candidates who narrated the movie that has gone around the world with a defense of teacher unions that Unity has not come close to.

There is no little irony in these Unity Caucus attacks on parents of young children as somehow not being qualified to serve in high union positions. I have a number of reports of teachers returning from child care leave to find a new principal immediately attacking them while the UFT dithers and covers up for the principals --- you know with a young child you can't serve in the brave new world of 24-7 teaching the ed deformers have imposed with the assistance of the UFT. (Yes, ed deform is anti woman and mothers.)

Remember Bloomberg's attacks on women working for him who became pregnant ("get rid of it") and the subsequent law suits? One should be shocked that in today's world we would hear people saying these things, triggered by Julie's not attending the recent Delegate Assembly due to her child running a high fever. (The fever has come down).

Here is Arthur's full statement with a great defense:
I have to say I am disgusted by the petty and personal attacks against a young mother on this forum. It's not all that hard to attend the DA. It's pretty hard to get pro-teacher pieces published in the Daily News. Julie's done that. It's pretty hard to be brilliant and articulate enough to narrate a film. Julie's done that too. I've met Julie, and I knew right away how smart she was. I'm very sorry some small-minded individuals have decided to target her. There are many chapter leaders who can go to the DA and cheer as we partner up with Bill Gates and set up teachers to be vilified in the pages of the NY Post. There are many who can rationalize things like mayoral control or the unconscionable fashion in which we treat ATR teachers. Personally, I'd prefer they stop attending the DA altogether and wake up to precisely what this new junk science evaluation system will mean for working teachers. There are few as poised and articulate as Julie Cavanagh. There are some things that can't be learned, that can't be taught, and innate brilliance is one of them. I'm not seeing much of that here. Shame on all of you anonymous cowards who attack her.  
Shame indeed!

Julie missed her advertized appearance at Karen Lewis' speech at NYCORE last week too and MOREs rose to cover for her and at no point did I hear anyone say, "Maybe we should not have chosen her for our presidential candidate."

But maybe that is one of the many differences between Unity and NYCORE.

Jeff A responded to Unity questions on Julie's qualifications:
1. Will someone make or second a motion to have the Delegate Assembly attendance rate of all chapter leaders and delegates freely available to all the members?

2. Why is it important to register at the Labor Day Parade?

3. Amount of grievances filed is a reflection of what exactly? an inept administration, a lack of cooperation amongst the admin and uft, or genuine problems. Remember, being correct and being what the leadership thinks is winnable are two entirely different things.

4. Trained by the UFT means what exactly? It would be eye-opening to see what members thought of their “representation” at these hearings.

5. What does any of this have to do with being able to run a Union? Is this your litmus test?

If it means that much to you, “anonymous”, could you tell us Randi's record on those issues while she was actually a teacher?
Ah, yes, the same Unity slug supported Randi with her 6 months of teaching and never having been a chapter leader.

Well, there is a lot more to this debate on the ICE blog triggered by a couple of incidents. The challenge to Mulgrew to show the guts even Randi did who debated twice. And the issue of Gloria Brandman's voting against the UFT governance report but it being issued as being unanimous. James published Gloria's request to Carmen Alvarez and Emil Pietromonico to NOT hold the final meeting on elementary Open School Night which the refused to do. But we see attacks on Gloria at the DA and on the blogs and not on the UFT leadership for ignoring the elementary schools. But I'll tackle the UFT support for mayoral control separately (Oh, did New Action which claims to oppose mayoral control get up and say ANYTHING at the DA?)

One of the Unity hacks puts attendance at DAs as somehow indicative of qualifications, which prompted responses from ICE followers:
After going to many nonsensical, windy DAs and witnessing not very much happen, ever, I've taken to reading your sharp reports. It takes much less time than driving to Manhattan, and saves me over 20 bucks on parking each month. I want to thank you, James Eterno, from the bottom of my heart, for attending these things and giving such a clear picture of what happens, so that I don't have to.
And this
Unity Hacks!!!

Why should anyone go to the DA? I read these reports every month and it's basically the same nightmare over and over again:

Mulgrew talks and talks and talks and talks and talks saying how great he and UFT are. He must be in love with the sound of his voice or is repeating his subliminal messages learned during his sleep recorded messages.

After an hour of listening to his nonsense, then we are treated to Leroy Barr announcing the dates for the next time we can hear Mulgrew preach to his faithful how great he is.

After Barr, the Unity Gang all raise their cards so they can tell Mulgrew how great he is prior to asking their embarrassingly ignorant questions. This resembles more of a CULT than a Union Meeting.

Then there is a new motion period. At this time some delegate from some weird left wing organization raises a motion to support Fidel Castro or Raul Castro. Then, the Unity Gang, once again raises their cards to say how our union leadership is not fooled by the radicals within or ranks.

People in the schools would not believe what goes on. After this, the regular motions follow and they are usually things like supporting daylight savings. You have to respect the people who can sit through this farce every month and sustain the ability to not commit suicide.

Going after Julie and anyone else that does not attend the CULT like meetings shows that some of the Unity Flatterers here are in need of skilled professionals that may successfully reverse brain washing. 


And I'll close with this red-baiting comment from the Unity slug:
Bizarre. Simply bizarre that someone from MORE would compare their own union's delegate assembly to a cult. Then again you have some MORE people running for UFT leadership who proudly proclaim that they're communist. Weird lot of you. With a bizarre take on the world.-- Unity Caucus Slug on ICE blog


So after the Unity Caucus slugs turned down a resolution at the UFT delegate assembly calling for a debate between the only 2 presidential candidates - yes Virginia, Mulgrew heads both the New Action and Unity slates -- and don't think Unity hasn't been using its people to make sure New Action election materials are showing up in as many schools as possible to sow confusion in the ranks --- the slugs started showing up on the ICE blog attacking Julie, who was home with a sick child, for not attending the DA. And red-baiting McCarthyism too. But we don't expect anything less from them.


  1. Let me add that when I could not attend an event in which I was scheduled to speak, an event I very much wished to attend, due to a death in the family, a very pregnant Julie covered for me and read my statement to an audience.

  2. That comment alone set back the women's right movement decades. Many CEOs are also moms too!

  3. Witnessing the deception, self-deception, manipulation and narrow self interest at the expense of the overall membership at a UFT Delegate Assembly leads first to anger, then demoralization.

    Not so different, in fact, from what the DOE is trying to "inspire" among teachers...

  4. Brian Jones wants to be in a leadership role in the UFT without having been a chapter leader or a delegate. Julie Cavanagh has not been a chapter leader for very long and rarely speaks at the DA. Does experience count for nothing? Sounds like the E4E platform to me. No matter how intelligent a person is, or poised, experience matters. Anyone who has heard Julie on NY 1 or in other forums knows she is a very bright person as Arthur G. represents. It doesn't mean she has the chops to run an organization of 100,000 members. There is still something to be said for putting your time in, and the value of having experienced and handled many different situations - isn't that the whole basis for LIFO - or are you against that too?

    1. Experience as chapter leader? Randi, Randi, Randi, Randi, Randi, Randi, Randi.
      Where were you then? Randi certainly had the chops to run a 100,000 member union off the cliff.

    2. And by the way, check whether Feldman -- who taught for about a year or 2 was a chapter leader. And Shanker was no longer working in a school when the union was formed so he was never a chapter leader.

    3. Julie's 13 years as a teacher is longer than Mulgrew taught.

    4. Norman, I said,"There is still something to be said for putting your time in, and the value of having experienced and handled many different situations" - I didn't just say you had to be a chapter leader or delegate, did I? Did Shanker and Feldman have, oh, a little something to do with the Civil Rights and Labor Movement in the 1960's and 70's? Multiple strikes? Organizing and running a labor union? Whatever your views on Randi, she certainly had strong and unique credentials for being in a position of labor leadership. Are you really equating Julie with Shanker? No one has ever heard of Brian Jones, indeed most members have never heard of Julie or MORE. What has he done? If they have great qualifications, why doesn't the membership know it?

    5. At least Julie spoke up against E4E, and against co-location charters and VAM. Where was Randi and Mulgrew on these issues?? They were embracing them the same way they embraced mayoral control. I am sure you voted your pocketbook over seniority rights. I am sure you didn't give a s&^t when ATRs were suffering. It was MORE who offered support when UNITY refused. So please don't hold up experience. Many of the chancellors running school districts now have never taught or were part of the TFA for 2 whole years. We need strong leadership and Randi is going around the country getting unions to vote merit pay and VAM. When NYC needed someone like Karen Lewis we got Randi and Mulgrew instead. Enough is enough. Unity is only in power because only 30% of the rank and file voted. Now they have a real choice.

    6. I'm not equating Julie with anyone. Mulgrew was jumped over 20 people who I would have thought more qualified -- long-time Unity activists. People were saying Mulgrew Who? And when Randi jumped over dozens including the great Alan Lubin there was a hell of a lot of back biting in Unity.

      Julie as a relative newcomer to opposition -- just as karen Lewis in Chicago was not a major voice until the last 4 years -- and has captured the support of everyone in the multitude of experienced voices from ICE, TJC, NYCORE, many who did not know her before. And she was heavily pregnant while MORE was forming so she was not present for a lot of that too. But her work and rep were so enormous in such a short time that there was no issue about her running from all the groups -- TJC, ICE, GEM, NYCORE -- and in fact many ICE and TJC people did not even know her personally, only her work and rep. People were anxious for her to run --- did you ask yourself why Kit and james from two different caucuses and former pres cand were so happy she would run? Where did that come from in such a relative short time of involvement? Because she is an extraordinarily talented woman in so many numerous ways. But good that you all equate the importance of the work she has done as not being worthy because she was only at 4 out of 6 DAs this year -- and due to childcare issues came by subway with pretty much a newborn baby, thus showing her commitment. Her voice and leadership drives the movement in so many ways but how would you guys really know about the people all over the nation actually fighting back against Ed Deform? People in the Chicago TU who showed our film all over the place treated her with amazing dignity and respect on our visit there in July 2011 and in fact with 200 teacher union activists from around the nation she was quickly placed in charge of important issues because of her leadership skills. But then you wouldn't know that. And it will take some time but the teachers of NYC will know all about it as time goes on.

      Your guys are bringing up the chapter leader and attendance at DA issues. I expected a lot of crap but either your guys are ignorant about Julie's status in the anti-ed deform movement both locally and nationally or just plain stupid to attack her this way which as it goes around will come back to bite you in numerous ways. I can only sit back and enjoy given that Julie argues with me that you guys are not really the enemy and can be moved in positive ways. I tell her to just wait. And here you go being the gift that keeps on giving. You want to know about Julie's leadership abilities and why people from Karen Lewis to Diane Ravitch have enormous respect for her, you will be finding out. Every attack is red meat. Julie who could have been a principal by now has put her energies into union work. if you were really interested in salvaging the UFT you would relish that people of her generation - along with all the other MORE candidates in that time frame -- actually, unlike E4E, see the union as worth saving. But you don't want people like Julie who question anything you do -- you are like any totalitarian state -- there can be no criticism -- which leaves you bereft of solutions -- other than to cry about what a big bad wolf Bloomberg is.
      You think so narrow and short term, that has always been your problem. You guys will hold onto your gig but teaching as a profession is doomed as you compromise and finagle things away till there's nothing left but your perks and even those will be diminished as time goes on. But if MORE attracts more Julies and Sams and Rosies and Emilies etc you won't be getting away with this crap for too much longer.

    7. Alan Lubin? He was at NYSUT. Not a candidate at all. For an "expert" on internal uft affairs Norm, you get a lot of stuff wrong. But I agree with your high assessment of Julie. She's great, and i urge my fellow Unity Caucus members to not say a bad word about her. And not just because it is politically stupid. The fact is she is a terrific and dedicated UFT stalwart, and MORE is lucky to have such a fine standard bearer. But every UFT member is lucky to have Mulgrew as President.. He is a rare talent and deserves our vote.

    8. Alan Lubin - if you think he's just NYSUT it shows your lack of knowledge. Alan was kicked upstairs to NYSUT to make room for Randi as he was an internal and external (for those inside the UFT Beltway) popular choice for future president. He was a ch ldr, Dist 32 rep then Bklyn borough rep. Naturally we all disagreed on issues but he treated everyone with respect and consideration. If he were president you would not see a guy duck a debate or allow the attacks on Julie. Your dumb comment indicates that your knowledge base needs serious updating. Go ask your elders and then eat some crow.

    9. I said he had moved on to NYSUT not that he was born there. He was never mentioned as UFT Prez at the time Randi left and was probably not eligible. So, crow is not on my lunch menu.

    10. Hold the press... I misread your post. I thought you said Lubin was a candidate when Mulgrew was chosen. You were referring to Randi . My mistake. But let the crow live.

  5. This disrespect for Julie, for motherhood and its responsibilities and for who Julie is as a person angers me. Julie is a parent first. She is a full time teacher (Mulgrew is not). She has attended DAs with her child. In fact he has probably spent more time at meetings than many chapter leaders and delegates who don't go or who check in and then check out early. This happens every month. How can some slug criticize a mother for taking care of an ill child? That's inhumane! It's irresponsible. Why aren't these folks being critical of their leader for not being willing to debate Julie? That's where their time should be spent. I guess their perks are worth more than the reason we have a union. This pettiness on the part of some UNITY hacks needs to stop. Mulgrew should call a halt to this immediately. He's not looking very presidential if he allows this type of bullying to continue.

  6. The speaker who said that she voted against the proposal was bullied into this public lie by those on her slate. There is a candidate for Vice President that reports members in their chapter to the principal. The same candidate screams at fellow UFT members in front of students. Why not have this candidate debate? Then the audience could ask, "What is your position on candidates who try to get their fellow teachers terminated without due process?" Sad, scary and true.

  7. Answer this:
    Has Julie joined any Union Committee?
    Has Julie worked the UFT phone banks.
    Does she push Vote/COPE to each and every member in her school
    How many lobby days has she attended.
    What is her relationship with her local elected officials.
    Has she applied for a PM staff position.
    Has she volunteered to be a U-Rating or Arbitration Advocate.
    Has she attended all other meetings, Chapter Leader weekends and monthly District wide Chapter Leader Meetings.

  8. "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win!" MK Gandhi.

    Looks like MORE has got Unity worried.

    John Elfrank-Dana
    MORE Candidate for Exec. Board
    23 years classroom teacher, 7 Years and running CL in a large school, 6 Years Delegate, former Teamster, Arbitration Advocate, 2 Strikes and a Lockout.
    I think Julie is more than qualified to be President of the UFT.

  9. . Disagree with any and all attacks on Julie's cred. She has proven herself in action and under fire. But Mulgrew is a breed apart. He is always five steps ahead of everyone at the table. The notion that he has "sold out" is patently absurd. He's a street fighter first and last and in the crunch, I want Mulgrew at the helm.

    1. TeachmyclassMrMayor(andyoutoo MrMulgrew)Tuesday, March 26, 2013 at 11:51:00 PM EDT

      Fighter? Really? If only that were true. The only time I truly saw him fight was when they had the Jewish holidays at the beginning of the school year, and Rupert Mur...Joel Klein went to the media, and screamed, "those evil rotten teachers, it is their fault your kids have to come in for one day the first week of school". The next day Mulgrew got up and and replied to the media (getting it right, for once), "what the heck are you talking about, Mr. Klein? Teachers don't make the schedule, you do". Klein was forced to shut up because his bluff was called. For once. Mulgrew/Weingarten/UNITY will never learn, that to fight a bully you have to punch them right back in the face, it is the only thing they respect. How many times, is UFT Leadership going to call the same, "if we play nice they will like us, and do the right thing" play? The media, controlled by the way, by Murdoch & Bloomberg, WILL NEVER LIKE the teachers' union. Mulgrew IS NOT a breed apart, he is a Weingarten clone, who is only interested in keeping the perks of power. Just Weingarten. I have emailed the man you have called a fighter, and not once, has he found the time or the lackey to email me back. Not a "whoever you are, drop dead, I am not interested in what you have to say" nothing...not even a thank you for your email. So please, stick up for Mulgrew all you want, it is your right, but please unless you have real evidence of battles and not cave-ins to whatever you choose to call the man with the Napoleonic complex running the city and his puppets, do not talk about him being a fighter.

  10. I saw a comment that stated that perhaps Mulgrew would debate, if "he deemed her (Julie c.) worthy." Who are these folks to think that Mulgrew is a god and has to deem Julie worthy? She has proven herself as many have pointed out. She is willing to debate the issues that our union members face. Why isn't Mr. Mulgrew? She can speak from the trenches and from knowledge of how we have been affected by a union leadership that has supported mayoral control; Chancellor Walcott who "ia a nice guy"; halfheartedly fought the mayor on closing schools which has allowed for the situation with the ATRs (as Mulgrew always says, "It could be worse."); halfheartedly opposed charter school co-locations (Yes, Leo Casey was at more PEP meetings and rallies than Mulgrew and had to be embarrassed into coming in to one PEP; has been pushing for teachers to be evaluated in part by student test scores and has decided it is easier to go to fact finding and arbitration with the city over a contract because it is harder to stand up and negotiate for our members. Mr. Mulgrew, come out and debate Julie. Defend what you have done for our members. What are you conerned about? YOU know who Julie is and what she stands for. Pull off the dogs and stand up. The personal attacks without substance are not befitting of the professionals we are. Parents, perhaps students and teachers are reading these exchanges and they do not portray our union well. In a democratic society people who want to be elected for a high office, which the UFT presidency represents, need to meet the public and each other face to face and debate the issues at hand. Let the educators meet you (many don't know who Mulgrew is). Let us hear you in an open forum. Let us make an educated decision about who best can lead our union. Julie is ready to do this. Are you?

  11. He's a street fighter? I guess that's why he sat back and allowed Bloomberg to get elected to a third term (and continues to support mayoral control of the schools), agreed to RttT, test-based evaluations and a Danielson checklist that will result in thousands of teachers losing their jobs.

    Oh, and by the way, he agreed to all of these things while WE STILL DON'T HAVE A CONTRACT. What a tough guy!

    Then there's the issue of those joke committees that the leadership ignores at will, political support for candidates that support closing schools, or PM staff positions that are unobtainable without joining Unity and signing a loyalty oath.

    But it's obviously worse than just signing a loyalty oath; obviously you must agree to sign away your integrity and willingness to think for yourself, too

    Truly, truly pitiful...

  12. He was a street fighting man when he agreed to allow us to be rated based on junk science (Student test scores), when he permitted the ATRS to be rotated every week, when he was in Cincinnati instead of at the PEP when 22 schools were being closed earlier this month, and when he hasn't asked us to do a thing to get a contract when our contract expired four years ago. Julie is a real fighter.

  13. I can't believe the attacks on Julie and Brian. I missed the DA due to familial obligations as well. It happens. Michael Mulgrew has got to go. He is a Trojan Horse sent to break the union from the inside. I saw through his lip service when I was a delegate at my first DA.

    I'm working on a video montage of the May 11, 2010 conference where he supported using junk science test scores to evaluate teachers. He sold us out and continues to sell out. I'm still under investigation 420 days and have over 36 unanswered emails from Mulgrew. Where is Michael's experience. Can Unity crew defend this post ?

    MORE candidates wouldn't allow teachers to be attacked like this and would mobilize stronger chapters.

  14. I think it's unfair that you all target Mulgrew simply because we haven't had a raise in over four years. So what if teachers will be judged on junk science? Let's not get all in a tizzy because some teachers will be fired. What about the teachers who will NOT be fired? Have you ever thought of that? What about the 13% of teachers who will get fair hearings about their bad ratings? Does MORE ever give credit for that? Of course not.

    Finally, you don't see Mike Mulgrew staying home from the DA to take care of some baby, and he speaks A LOT more than any MORE member at the DA.

  15. Unity is SCARED. Plain and simple. Mulgrew will never meet with Julie to defend his record. They know what they've done to their members and THEY DON'T CARE. Only thing they're interested in doing is protecting their job$. They don't give the membership one single thought.

  16. I wonder what the uft queens borough rep is thinking...


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