I spoke to a friend of mine who is a dedicated teacher at Reynolds High School, located in Troutdale, OR. As a member of the Reynolds Education Association, this teacher is currently on strike, along with the rest of the district over a budget conflict with the school board. For the Reynolds School Board, the situation is about two principle issues: money and power. The Reynolds School District is involved in an apparent political maneuver to break the union. The solution is far more nuanced than cutting teacher pay and making teachers work longer hours.
Robert Caro is the author of The Years of Lyndon Johnson biography. Broken up into five parts, Caro just released his fourth installment in the series, The Passage of Power in early May. I’ve read the first three volumes and they are truly excellent history. Caro’s study of power is insightful, eloquent, and unsparing in both its research and conclusions. John Stewart interviewed Caro on May 10th, 2012.
(On an peripherial note, Caro reminds me of the late actor John Spencer, a star of “The West Wing”)