Thursday, April 7, 2016

EXTRA: Soviet-style, or mere practicality, w/ regard to no elections

I’m still trying to figure out what to think of the reports that the Chicago Teachers Union cancelled its elections for union officers, saying that incumbent members would merely have their terms extended by another three years each.

For it seems that all the incumbent union officers wanted to seek re-election come May, and nobody tried to run a campaign to challenge anybody, according to the Catalyst Chicago magazine that on Thursday reported about the elections’ cancellation.

NOT KAREN LEWIS, the CTU president whom I suspect is the only union official the general public would recognize. Not any of them.

So much for what I’m sure was the Chicago Public Schools’ dream of having the rank-and-file dump their leadership and replace them with people more malleable to the will of the school’s administration – which ultimately means the will of Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

I’m sorry that the idea of cancelling an election and merely declaring the incumbents the victors bothers me. It has overtones of the Soviet Union of old – or any other totalitarian state where the elections meant to express the “free will of the people” always wind up returning the establishment.

Although I also realize that the process of staging an election is costly.

THERE ARE TIMES I wonder how much it is worth our own election process when so many of the offices up for grabs are being sought solely by the incumbents who face no challengers.

I bet Rahm wishes he could cancel elections
So are Lewis & Co. merely being practical? Or have they staged a coup d’etat of sorts to keep control of their union – which still has to try to reach agreement with the Chicago Public Schools over a new contract for its teachers.

Or else face the wrath of the public if they go on strike and leave all those parents of schoolchildren in a tizzy trying to figure out where their kids will go during the day while they’re at work!


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