Greed Is Good... Unless You're Teaching My Kids Math!

My homeboy Roy Edroso has an outstanding job of rounding up the rightblogger reaction to the teachers' protests in Wisconsin. You'll never believe it but... they really hate the teachers! It's totally shocking, I know.

What I've found most amusing about the rightblogger critique is that they're trying to frame the teachers as "greedy." These are the same folks, after all, who have told us since Reagan that greed was good! But apparently greed is only good for people doing useful things like trading housing derivatives and not good for people who do useless things like teaching our kids math. Here's John Hinderaker with a typically insane argument:

It is infuriating to see our President weighing in on behalf of overpaid, underworked and greedy members of public employee unions. They are among the more privileged members of our society, but, as full partners in the Democrats' scheme to suck up ever more money even if it bankrupts the country, they have Obama's complete support.

Riiiiight, the people who take home an average of just under $50,000 a year in pay are the "privileged" members of our society.

But say, let's go back to early 2009 when it was revealed that AIG -- you know, that little company that received $170 billion in taxpayer bailout money -- planned to pay people in its financial products division a whopping $218 million in bonuses. Let's see what Mr. Hinderaker had to say about that:

As I explained on Bill Bennett's radio show this morning, I don't think there is anything wrong with the AIG bonuses, and the people who got them should keep them.

And in fact, the rightblogger reaction to bailed-out AIG traders who receiving multimillion-dollar bonuses was indeed somewhat different from their reactions to the "greedy" teachers! Can you believe it? Let's go down the list. Here's the Ole Perfesser:

Better hope [the horribly oppressed AIG traders ] don’t “go John Galt.”

Protein Wisdom:

If [tax on the AIG bonuses] passes, its death knell. If Congress suddenly discovers that it can take away money that they decide that someone doesn't deserve, if we let them get away with that, there'll be no stopping them.

Red State:

The people getting the bonuses are the people who stayed on or came aboard to clean up the mess in exchange for a healthy bonus for success. Succeed they did, reducing net liability from $2.6 trillion in August (when the bonus program was initiated) to about $1.7 trillion in February - saving the taxpayers almost a trillion dollars of potential liability. For this, they earned a bonus of a little over .02% of the amount saved, as their contracts specified.

For this great service, we should be thanking them, not allowing ignorant Congressmen to release their home addresses and family members’ names so their barbaric minions can harass them.

Do you see the difference?

Living high off the taxpayer teet is all well and good if you're one of our Productive Corporate Overlords. But if you think you deserve to have good health insurance just because you do something silly like teach children to read? Pfffft, get real hippie!


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