Monday, May 3, 2010

The Awakening

Wow Jim and I fought for education spending reform for 4 years in Illinois we then realized we were fighting a losing battle. It is great to see people in Illinois waking up. I hope that the battle can still be won.

The following piece appeared in the Northwest Herald newspaper.

It warms my heart to see the comments to the following letter to the editor.

Spelling and grammar errors as well as typos are left as an exercise for my readers.

Supports tax increase

To the Editor:

I’m really disappointed by your editorial in Sunday’s paper that said “no” to the call for a tax increase in Illinois as a way of helping to fill a $13 billion budget hole.

Certainly we need to look at places to cut unnecessary spending.

But to think we can solve the problems built up over years of irresponsible actions purely with cuts is naive.

I was one of the 15,000-plus people in Springfield last week to rally for a tax increase.

The rally was organized by the Responsible Budget Coalition, or RBC.

People who have jobs have a moral responsibility to pay a little more to protect education and to stop cuts from taking more jobs.

Your front-page story in that same Sunday paper is titled: “Municipalities vs. Gov. Quinn; Local officials speak out against proposed cuts.”

We need to encourage legislators to do the right thing – vote for revenue reform such as HB 174. We can’t continue the policies of the past.

We are responsible for each other in our society. We have to do the right thing even if it costs us individually.

Tony Casalino
McHenry County Federation of Teachers


unionroller wrote on May 1, 2010 4:07 a.m.
"When you were in Springfield, did you or any of your group make a donation to the state? We are all free to raise our own taxes any time we want. So did you lead by example? 15,000 people writing checks for $10,000 would be one heck of a story, and might save a few patronage jobs."

wendyro wrote on May 1, 2010 5:58 a.m.
"Tony, any legislator that votes yes for HB 174 will get voted right out of office. As far as accepting responsiblity for another persons actions. No!! I will not enable irresponsible behavior not to mention I carry more then my fair share of responsiblity as a employer, mother and supportive family member. Take your own advice, step up and take a cut in pay Tony. Last point, I did protect my daughters education and removed her from the sub standard public school system."

taxpayer wrote on May 1, 2010 6:20 a.m.
"Why is it that upon reading the title, I already knew it would be written by someone suckling off the public teat?"

cadman wrote on May 1, 2010 6:34 a.m.
"Taxpayer,your last 6 words describe perfectly how the teachers and union feel about taxpayers.When they went to Springfield it was for their benefit, not the students."

fedup2 wrote on May 1, 2010 7:04 a.m.
"I say CUT, CUT, CUT and then when your done CUT some more. Why should these "teachers" be special???? And at $13,000-$20,000 I would think parent would be better served to have their children prviately taught. At least that way the kids would come out somewhat educated, instead of "indoctrinated"."

fedup2 wrote on May 1, 2010 7:05 a.m.
"So when the state is spending this kind of money per student, I say privatize the whole system at this point. At least we would get some benefit from the private sector."

Redstripe wrote on May 1, 2010 7:18 a.m.
"Tony you fail to forget that people are hurting with and without jobs. You expect people to pay more however those days are over. We can't afford it. Illinois is in serious trouble. Spending has finally caught up to reality. The teachers union are a big part of this mess and we get it now. Enjoy your next mandatory raise!!"

HAVE MUD WILL TRAVEL wrote on May 1, 2010 7:56 a.m.
"The letter is just another example of why PUblic Servants need their voting rights suspended while in 'service to the Masters'. If I could get a dollar raise by paying a nickel more in taxes, I'd be pro-tax TOO. "

ManColter wrote on May 1, 2010 8:07 a.m.
"Y'all need to go back to school. And pay attention this time. "

ok-now wrote on May 1, 2010 8:21 a.m.
"Kids in college and one almost there, no raise last year and cut hours. No to any tax increase period."

daisymay wrote on May 1, 2010 8:22 a.m.
"I too would support a small tax increase if it would get IL out of debt and eliminate the problem we have with our state government, but as long as our elected officials are more interested in the vote than the welfare of the state it's a worthless gesture. As long as our politicians continue to give in to special interest groups, such as the teachers union, we will end up in the same place we started. Just take a look at what is happening with the "freedom of information act" which IL recently passed. It's heading toward ground zero because of special interest groups like the teachers U."

HAVE MUD WILL TRAVEL wrote on May 1, 2010 8:22 a.m.
"ManColter sayz,Y'all need to go back to school....'....You must be a real 'on fire Christian' knowing that the Law is a schoolmaster that leads to Christ and the unfaithful gov servants use law to bully the Masters. Is that the school you were referring to? Yes or no would be sufficient. "

dupe dupe wrote on May 1, 2010 8:23 a.m.
"So years of "irresponsible spending" should be excused and we should all just pay more to maintain the status quo. I don't think so."

City Raised wrote on May 1, 2010 8:30 a.m.
"Raise the state sales tax, this way everyone pays their fair share! Including the 15,000 people who went to Springfield to support irresponsible spending. "

HAVE MUD WILL TRAVEL wrote on May 1, 2010 8:42 a.m.
"City, the servants' wants are unlimited, tempered by Nothing."

Grandmacub wrote on May 1, 2010 9:43 a.m.
"Surprise! The teachers' union wants the taxpayers to give them even more. Aren't your benefits and pension enough? i'm retired and have no pension. Please don't ask for more. Our tax bill just arrived. I resent having to contribute to teachers' pensions. I didn't vote for that!"

imhotep wrote on May 1, 2010 10:31 a.m.
"The shrinking and financially oppressed private sector cannot support the growing and privileged public sector any longer. NO to tax increases!"

infielder wrote on May 1, 2010 10:52 a.m.
"Re 7:05am fedup said: "So when the state is spending this kind of money per student, I say privatize the whole system at this point."//// Great idea. Government agencies do have private companies, contractors bid for various products, services needed. Why not the educational system. Does anyone think that private companies, in competition with each other, could not run the educational system cheaper and more effectively? Would one or more Private Teaching companies authorized to teach K-12 in McHenry County have the great quantity of "Administrators" making $100K and UP? No way."

PayingTaxes wrote on May 1, 2010 11:16 a.m.
"Give Teacher's SSI benefits, and terminate the teacher's retirement plan. Give them a 401k like plan. No more UNION's negotiating "soft" costs. We need a "pay-as-you" go plan for both Union's and school boards to manage. "pay-as-you-go"."

PayingTaxes wrote on May 1, 2010 11:18 a.m.
"When Huntley was striking last year. I said this statement.... As sure as the sun will come up tommorrow, so to will Tax revenue decline because of economy. I respect teachers, but layoffs is there own doing. Reality Bites."

PayingTaxes wrote on May 1, 2010 11:19 a.m.
"It's The Spending Silly. "

Howler wrote on May 1, 2010 12:51 p.m.
"The teachers act like they are getting nothing. I just got my tax bills for both home and business. Funny taxes went UP! What made them go up? Teacher pension assesments! While I believe that education is everyones responsibility when do you stop bleeding us? I have no kids, graduated college 30 years ago. When do I get to stop being soaked? Not only that the product these teachers are turning out is pathetic.We need to stop the bleeding. Make teachers and school districts responsible for the quality of their product! "

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 1:49 p.m.
"Tony, post your address. I just received my RE Taqx Bill and it went up 5% at a time when Washington claims there is NO inflation. I will send you my bill for your payment, since you feel so strongly about taxes. I will let you lead by example. Interestingly, most of the increase (in dollars) is going to the various schools and their many pots of money (operating, salaries, pensions, etc.). As UNIONROLLER (first post states), no one is stopping you from paying additional taxes, but from YOUR checkbook, not ours!!!"

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 1:52 p.m.
"Tony, who paid the salaries/expenses of those 15,000 in Springfield? I hope NO tax dollars were used but I know better."

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 2:08 p.m.
"Tony, get a real job where you have to compete using skills and not be protected by tenure."

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 2:10 p.m.
"Quit feeling sorry for the teachers (some of you). They accepted the position knowing the salaries/benefits. Now they want us to feel sorry for THEIR CHOICE!!!"

GerryWalsh wrote on May 1, 2010 2:18 p.m.
"1. Abolish tenure. It protects incompetent teachers. 2. How is it so many teachers can take the day off for a protest, and the taxpayers don't have a counter-demonstration?"

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 2:20 p.m.
"Vouchers, let the taxpayer decide whom to support."

ek09 wrote on May 1, 2010 2:22 p.m.
"The democrates are spending like crazy. We need to replace everyone with Republicans. At least they don't spend money like water. Republicans understand that it's the people's money and are always very careful with it. If we had only Republicans in power, national, state and local economies would be looking great right now."

Howler wrote on May 1, 2010 2:54 p.m.
"Ek09...apparently you missed the entire li'l bush administration...he spent like it was burning a hole in his pocket. Unfortunately it was our pocket!"

Othello wrote on May 1, 2010 3:01 p.m.
"The Democrats are racing downhill over the speed limit, the Republicans are going downhill at the speed limit. Both parties are taking America downhill, just at different speeds. No one in either party has yet to identify the brake pedal, much less use same."

GerryWalsh wrote on May 1, 2010 3:24 p.m.
"After posting my comment here, I wrote letters to my State Rep and State voicing opposition to HB174. They can't read minds."

1wallcloud wrote on May 1, 2010 6:21 p.m.
"righties= they don't have any problem spending it, but don't want it to cost them anything. Sounds childish to me. They want bits and pieces of socialism, but deny that they are socialists. What a joke they are."

readingonline wrote on May 1, 2010 6:47 p.m.
"Personally I don't think I've seem many examples of all the money we've poured into the schools over the years benefit anyone but administrators, teachers, and building fantastic palaces they call school buildings. Must be when the beneficiaries of good pay, benefits, and a nice retirement package are happy, the kids learn better. Only problem is we keep pouring in the money year after year. I know "it's for the kids"."

NONOTNOW wrote on May 1, 2010 7:28 p.m.
"Oh here we go ,same old song and dance. Tugging of heart strings=Let me part your wallet once again!"

Tricia2 wrote on May 1, 2010 8:10 p.m.
"Tony- when I read your letter, I wanted to get sick! I can not believe anyone actually had the nerve to wright such trash. You are the perfect example of what is wrong with a lot of folks today. It's the "entitilment" mentality. The ones that think the rest of us owe them for life. Tony, it's time to get a grip and take a cut just like the rest of the country. I pay not only to your salary but I also pay to put my daughter in private school. To ask me to do more is more then unfair."

Tricia2 wrote on May 1, 2010 8:10 p.m.

Tricia2 wrote on May 1, 2010 8:12 p.m.
"Oh and.... I WANT MY VOUCHER!!"

kenbob wrote on May 1, 2010 9:12 p.m.
"Spoken like a true union representative. The problem with simply raising taxes without cutting wasteful spending is that it gives politicians the approval to spend more and to be more wasteful. Unions and government - like two peas in a pod."

IceAge wrote on May 1, 2010 9:13 p.m.
"Tricia2, you have inadvertently described the major problem in America today and what is driving the modern Tea Party movement. The revolution was fought, in part, because America was being taxed without being represented in its governance. Today we face the issue of groups being represented without being taxed according to representation (taxation without representation). When it became evident that certain groups could, through the use of their vote, grant themselves a portion of the treasury then democracy was doomed. The Teachers Unions are just such a group. "

IceAge wrote on May 1, 2010 9:15 p.m.
"If they really cared about American children, as they claim, then in this time of economic hardship for so many American families they would be offering wage and benefit cuts. Instead they are demanding even more from an already stressed public. Time to shut down the public school system and fire all of the bloodsucking leeches."

IceAge wrote on May 1, 2010 9:16 p.m.
"Burn down the system and start again. It is the only way the Unions will understand reality. One more point here – in the new public school system outlaw unions. They are doing much more harm than good. Their time has come and passed."

kenbob wrote on May 1, 2010 9:20 p.m.
"maybe the state should take the revenue from the lottery and put it into schools. Oh ya, they promised they'd do that but then changed their minds. nope - cut, cut, cut and then cut to the bone. Then and only then is any discussion about tax increases on the table. Too much waste in state spending to allow union mobsters to pull at the heart strings and say its "for the kids.." no it isn't. it is about money and power."

illuminati wrote on May 1, 2010 10:01 p.m.
"wall street transactions aren't taxed at all. None. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Donut hole. Nothing. You get taxed when you buy your children a pair of shoes, but NONE of the more than 1 QUADRILLION flowing through the slime pit full of thieves and banksters known as wall street gets taxed. We are all struggling just to keep homes and our families fed and they are receiving record bonuses. A 1% Tobin Tax would pump 10 TRILLION worth of taxes into the system for every QUADRILLION the banksters manipulate to their benefit and our detriment. Tax wall street AND end the fed. Prosperity will follow."

Bukowski wrote on May 1, 2010 10:31 p.m.
"Imhotep says: ""The shrinking and financially oppressed private sector cannot support the growing and privileged public sector any longer." S&P says over 80% of corporations showed very favorable profits during the 1st quarter of 2010. What "shrinking and oppressed private sector are you referring to? Bernie Taupin wasn't referring to education, kingtut. He was referring to "the man" which was Nixon then and is the stranglehold of the corporations on our country now."

KevinB wrote on May 2, 2010 6:35 a.m.
"I welcome these letters from Democrats calling for tax increases...Especially Union Democrats....get em on the record ..their leaders too"

KevinB wrote on May 2, 2010 6:55 a.m.
"paperorplastic...this letter advocates taking more money out of our pockets to pay for democrat party union loyalist jobs...maybe that is why there isn't a mad dash to run over and comment on the editorial...though I certainly understand democrats don't want to talk about raising taxes and the current democrat unemployment rate"

Harrison Bergeron wrote on May 2, 2010 7:49 a.m.
"Spoken as a true union goon, getting largesse from the government."

1wallcloud wrote on May 2, 2010 8:02 a.m.
"we have to pay taxes to support our police, military, roads, fire departments, etc. etc. Why do some vote to spend on trillion dollar wars but don't feel responsible to pay for it? This baffles me. Its all about you isn't it. Get Get Get and let others pay. You probably shop lift too. Sickening. I feel like I shouldn't have to pay for schools since I have no children attending, but I'm wise enough to know that if children don't attend school, they end up republican."

imhotep wrote on May 2, 2010 8:09 a.m.
"reply to Bukowski 5/1@10:31pm, here's from an article from Mail Online: "Nearly a million jobs in private industry and commerce have been lost in just 15 months, the latest unemployment figures showed yesterday. But the full impact of the recession has been shrugged off in the public sector, which has seen a boom of over 300,000 in recruitment of bureaucrats." Read more: That's what I was referring to..."

Pete12 wrote on May 2, 2010 12:09 p.m.
"I love it, the "Responsible Budget Coalition" whose members include "THE CHICAGO DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS OF AMERICA"...ate least these guys ADMIT THEY ARE SOCIALISTS!!! "

Redstripe wrote on May 2, 2010 7:23 p.m.
"Wow, I really didn't know about HB 174. Now my neighbors and I are writing our legislators and telling them to oppose this.. Thanks for firing up a storm Tony.."

Bukowski wrote on May 2, 2010 8:07 p.m.
"Thanks more making my point, Bubba-Ho-Tep. Unemployment at record highs while financial sector and corporate profits soar. See any inconsistencies? I do. These same corporations and their high income employees who still have the jobs are paying record low tax rates. I don't know the source of the stat on public employee recruitment, but I do know that in Illinois 20,000 public sector employees will file for unemployment on May 30 as a result of public sector reductions."

Wake up America wrote on May 2, 2010 8:13 p.m.
"Tony Casalino President McHenry County Federation of Teachers YOU (union teachers) ARE THE PROBLEM!! You and your federation MUST be stopped...and we taxpayers WILL stop you!"

Pete12 wrote on May 2, 2010 8:57 p.m.
"I call 20,000 public sector job cuts a good start....let's cut 20,000 more on June 30, and freeze ALL public sector pension contributions IMMEDIATELY."

imhotep wrote on May 2, 2010 10:12 p.m.
"Hi Waldo (Boysenberry)! So nice to hear from you again! Did I "make your point"? Hmmmn? Private sector jobs tanking, public sector jobs growing? And that is "good" for our Economy, how? I have only an Econ. 101 level of understanding. It sounds BAD to me? Explain where I am wrong?"

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