WASHINGTON – Let’s face a chilling reality that’s stared taxpaying American citizens and parents in the face since at least the 1970s. Slowly, stealthily, America’s increasingly powerful teachers unions have become yet another tool in the American left’s Marxist toolbox. These public employee unions take a substantial portion of dues extracted from teachers each year in most American states. They redistribute this hard-earned money to compliant Democrat politicians as well as radical left organizations supporting similar aims.
In return, these unions gain the unswerving loyalty — and votes — of far-left Democrats. And with this unswerving loyalty comes automatic support for outrageous wage and pension plan increases, always publicized as being “for the students.”
All left-wing Democrat, all the time
Both major teachers’ unions use a substantial amount of union dues totals each year to support Democrat politicians and related organizations that favor the left side of the political aisle. Radical left Democrats are paid back with bulging election and re-election coffers each election year. And better yet, the also radical left teachers unions have helped democrats dumb education down by substituting a once robust American educational system with an ideological and politically correct fake curriculum that promotes bizarre leftist notions of history and gender for the strong subject matter that once made American students among the most independent and knowledgeable students on the planet.
It’s a vicious circle, all paid for by America’s taxpayers, including America’s parents who generally haven’t watched what’s been going on for the last few decades. Which amounts to the Marxist indoctrination of at least two generations of America’s young people. And it’s these radically uninformed young people that now roam the streets of America’s major cities each and every night attempting to foment a Civil War or Revolution to bring down the American system that’s offered so much freedom and hope for so many people for so long. If we don’t move to reverse this trend very soon, we’ll find ourselves on the Road to Venezuela in very short order.
The Road to Perdition… and back
One major way to defeat this hard left, anti-American agenda is to defang and defund America’s universally anti-American teachers unions. They are, after all, public employee unions. The kind of unions that even the sainted Franklin Delano Roosevelt realized shouldn’t exist. Because once they do, the essentially buy like-minded politicians and majorities that abuse both the parents and children of American taxpayers by using these fund to make unreasonable salary and retirement demands at the expense of actual educational quality.
Worse, to end run the taxpayers — the teachers’ real employer — by putting their political and monetary demands in the hands of compliant Democrat pols who need union funds to put them over the top in election after election, primarily in America’s obviously dysfunctional, nearly all of which have been run, for decades by — surprise — Democrats.
Left wing Democrats and left wing teachers unions: joined at the hip. “For the children.”
This creates a symbiotic relationship between the unions and the politicians whose elections and re-elections they help to underwrite. They’re supporting liberal-left politicians and / or liberal left causes that they and / or the liberal-left politicians also support. They basically support a liberal-left ecosystem of which the politicians are just a part. And that money doesn’t really do a thing for teachers, schools, or for America’s badly broken and ideologically malicious public school systems.
What we see in the streets of America’s city today should be proof enough that the kids moving through this corrupt, pro-Marx, pro-Maoist system have learned to Hate America First. And now many of them are forming the shock-troops waging a Kristallnacht-style “revolution” against the small businesses and hard working middle class families that support the original and highly successful American model. But this kind of
indoctrination education has all been “for the children.” Right?
Let’s try to follow the money
Insofar as what percentage of teachers’ union dues actually go toward supporting politicians and political aims, that’s a slippery slope. The number is clearly substantial. But clever verbiage and clever accounting generally make it difficult to pry the actual numbers out.
To provide a pair of examples, here’s a piece of info interpreting the Pennsylvania State Education Association’s (PSEA) budget that goes toward a variety of political activities.
“Using the PSEA’s own calculation, approximately 34 percent of each full-time teacher’s dues goes to political, ideological, and similar activities NOT associated with the union’s direct representation of workers. How do we know this? By what the union charged in 2017-18 to “fair share fee” payers—those educators who decided not to join the union, but who still had to pay a portion of dues to their school district’s union.”
Here are some numbers from the Texas Business Coalition.
“…the Texas Business Coalition found figures for the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).
“Analyzing spending between 2000 and 2018, the report shows that 85.01 percent of funds went to Democratic causes and candidates ($13,103,57.26), compared to the funding for Republican causes and candidates ($2,310,482.54, or 14.99 percent). In the 2017-2018 Texas election cycle, funding was as follows: $2,127,391.40 (87.19 percent) to Democratic candidates and causes; $312,491.48 to Republican candidates and causes.”
But, given that we have 50 states plus DC, estimates are general at best. Which means that some state teachers unions may be way more outrageously tilted toward supporting sympathetic local and national politicians, while others may be limited in the way they can do this. (And don’t forget: a few states still don’t permit teachers’ unions to charge and collect dues at all.)
Which party gets nearly all the teachers unions’ donations, directly or indirectly?
A general survey, via “OpenSecrets,” which attempts to review where political and politically related donations of all kinds end up, offers a number of impressive fact and figure charts supporting their observations, which include the following.
“Teachers unions have steadily amped up their political involvement: From 2004 to 2016, their donations grew from $4.3 million to more than $32 million — an all-time high. Even more than most labor unions, they have little use for Republicans, giving Democrats at least 94 percent of the funds they contributed to candidates and parties since as far back as 1990, where our data begins.”
There are dozens and dozens of sources that include everything from fairly specific info to generalized aggregate facts and figures.
Political indoctrination that works against families and kids is big business
In point of fact, there’s little doubt that the percentage of teachers’ union dues going to politicians and political causes — the vast majority of them left liberal — is quite high on a national basis. Estimates range widely between a low of 5% to a high of 30–35%. But the problem lies in what’s being defined. Do these percentages only include direct political and PAC contributions? That would skew the percentage lower. Or do they include political candidates, PACs, and the usual left-liberal causes, think tanks, etc. This would skew the number toward the higher percentages. “Education” is merely a cover for this political malfeasance.
Searching for real surveys. In vain
There may be one or two serious drill-down surveys out there that pinpoint the kind of numbers I’m looking for. But short term at least, I can’t seem to snuff them out. Major media corporations still possess the manpower and personnel to conduct this kind of deep research. But they’re no longer wish to do so because it might not match “the Narrative.”
Unions are really good at what I call “Washingtonspeak.”
That term refers to using fancy language and manipulating numbers to tell the (fake) positive story you want to tell. The objective truth underlying the real story matters little.
On the other hand, teachers’ unions are not the only ones using bafflegab and accounting tricks to conceal things they don’t want you to know. All unions, politicians, lobbyists and rich CEOs do the same. That’s why objective truth is hard to find on either side of the aisle.
Follow the money and follow the politics
Teachers’ unions remain notorious for their near-universal and vigorous support of liberal-left causes and politicians. It matters little what their rank and file members might think. And clearly, a substantial percentage of annual teachers’ union dues collected go to politics and leftist political causes. It does little to support their union brothers and sisters.
Instead, teachers’ unions create massive ongoing slush funds that, particularly in highly urbanized states guarantee a permanent left-Democrat majority. This isn’t good for the citizens of those states. And it doesn’t help their kids. They struggle with dysfunctional school systems the unions essentially control.
I wish I had the time and the funding to dig more deeply into this crucial issue. But it would take an organization with the funding of Judicial Watch to excavate better numbers and money trails. But no one seems interested.
— Headline image: Cartoon by Branco. Reproduced with permission and by arrangement with Legal Insurrection.