Archive for the ‘Political Media’ Tag

You Wake Up on a Pile of Money You Earned Unethically   Leave a comment

You are, unfortunately, a centrist pundit.

You have your job because you provide a veneer of objectivity on the corporate agenda of the person that signs your checks.  It is a relaxing life, all told: no accountability, a base salary a few multiples of the median that’s supplemented by lucrative speaking fees, regular invitations to pseudo-intellectual wanking conferences in scenic spots like Aspen.  A charmed existence by any measure.

But everything’s not all peaches and cream.  Occasionally there’s a situation that demands comment, and whose facts on the ground are so skewed against the corporate vision of your employer that it takes remarkable feats of hackery to obscure them.

And it takes a toll.  When something like the Chicago Teachers Union strike comes along, there will be ulcers and sleepless nights.  “I have to comment on this but my God what am I going to say.  The only pay issue is the mayor requiring 20% more work for only 2% more pay, so I can’t hammer them for being greedy; the teachers are mainly striking over an evaluation system that would place 40% of the weight on high-stakes testing and the rest on layers of arbitrary judgment for which there will be no training and no oversight.  And the rest is more funding for smaller class size, for air conditioners and asbestos removal.   I can’t really defend a testing regime that is largely unproven, and with what evidence there is pointing to wild arbitrary swings in scores; I can’t defend giving administrators tremendous authority with arbitrary guidelines and no oversight; I can’t be pro-asbestos – yet – so what am I going to do?”

This is when you earn your paycheck.  This is when your skills are most needed. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted September 18, 2012 by Ben in Uncategorized

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