Rahm's 'Raft of Lies' grows as city shakes its head at the 'Murder Mayor'... Parents 4 Teachers details the latest additions to the case against 'underutilization crisis' and the closings

While the 800 members of the Chicago Teachers Union's House of Delegates were increasing their commitment to implementing the union's decision to demand -- by any means necessary -- a moratorium on school closings in Chicago (and heading off some self-serving internal attempts to sabotage the union's leadership by the new election opposition being supported by the Emanuel administration -- the group "Parents 4 Teachers" was pulling together the information from the past week adding to the case against the closings.

Two years after Rahm Emanuel's 2011 election as Chicago's mayor, most observers now realize that Emanuel had no intention of governing Chicago for the people of Chicago -- despite the silly proclamations of communities at his election night revels, above -- but instead simply viewed the four years he would have to spend as Chicago's mayor as the last stepping stone to his Presidential bid.The confrontation's lines are clearly being drawn. On the one side was the dwindling credibility of the administration of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who seems to have arrived for his four-year stint in Chicago with scripts for each year, but no plan for actually trying to govern the city itself as it really exists. In Year One, the Emanuel script called for a confrontation with Chicago's teachers over what his propagandists portrayed as the problem of a short school day. So Emanuel's campaign, both in the legislature and in the city, was to push for the "Longer School Day." That became law and practice, but at the expense of a serious discussion of what should happen in the city's public schools, and finally, of the Chicago Teachers Strike of 2012, which Emanuel provoked over more than a year of insults to the city's teachers and attacks on the city's real public schools.

The second year's script seems to require that Emanuel show his manhood this time around by closing dozens, if not hundreds, of real public schools, again behind a smokescreen of propaganda. Trouble for Emanuel is that by the end of the first year of his scripts, anyone who was paying attention knew that Emanuel's team had no interest in the actual problems of Chicago and an enormous interest in grooming a video kind of "record" for Rahm Emanuel's 2016 run for the presidency of the United States. Ironically, Chicago had elected the first mayor in history who didn't care about governing the city, since from his arrival in the Fifth Floor at City Hall his work was dedicated to constructing the case, largely fictional, that he should be supported for the presidency.

Whether Chicago's Mayor was a Republican crook like Big Bill Thompson or a series of Machine Democrats all the way through Harold Washington and Richard M. Daley (with Richard J. Daley as the central figure of the century, politically and in terms of governance), everyone who sat in the Fifth Floor office knew the first rule:

"Good government is good politics." (Richard J. Daley).

Then came Emanuel, who apparently believed that he could govern a virtual Chicago, and devoted millions of public dollars and an even greater amount of private money to creating an image that diverged ever further from the reality of the city. By early 2013, as the city's grotesque drug gang murders continued to shock the nation, Emanuel continued marching from corporate propaganda event to corporate fundraiser, barely stopping to learn the boundaries of any of the city's 50 wards, let alone the needs of the people in them.

Buy early 2013, however, Emanuel's version of reality was crashing against the reality of the city that had elected him a bare two years earlier, and except for a handful of corporate media hacks and his ever expanding propaganda machines, just about everyone else knew that the only question when Emanuel made a pronouncement about the city's public schools was not whether he was lying, but how big the lie had become. And in 2013, the lies about the so-called "underutilization crisis" and the public schools' "budget crisis" had grown so large that across the city various groups of parents, teachers and students had almost created a parlor game of chasing down the lies as they flowed out of the Mayor's Press Office (Fifth Floor, City Hall) and the Chicago Public Schools Office of Communications (Sixth Floor, 125 S. Clark St.).

On March 13, one of those groups did a summary, which appears below.

Parents 4 Teachers

Parents 4 Teachers (P4T) has come together to stand up for teachers and work for real education reform. Standing up for teachers means standing up for our kids!

Join Our Facebook Group!

This is what happens when CPS closes a school…

This is what happened to Crispus Attucks Elementary School, 3813 S. Dearborn St., after CPS closed the school in 2008. Once a thriving learning environment, it’s now a blight on the community, a deteriorated building littered with trash and gang graffiti. Is this what we want for our city?

If you don't want to see 80 more of these eyesores across Chicago, please take some action:

Call CPS at 773-553-1500. SayNO SCHOOL CLOSINGS.

Call Mayor Rahm Emanuel, 312-744-3300, with the same message.

Attend the P4T school closings strategy session, 7 p.m., March 20, Luther Memorial Church, 2500 W. Wilson.

Attend the city-wide NO SCHOOL CLOSINGS Rally, March 27, 4 p.m., at Daley Plaza, 50 W. Washington.

Forward this email to three friends and ask them to join us in this fight. School closing moratorium pushed in Springfield

The chairman of the State Senate Education Committee and members of the Illinois Legislative Black and Latino Caucuses, supported by seven Chicago aldermen, are pushing a bill in Springfield to halt all school closings until CPS develops a 10-year master facilities plan, as required by state law.

The bill, SB1571/HB3283, is being sponsored by Sen. William Delgado and Rep. Elgie Sims and supported by:

Senators: Emil Jones III, Chair of the Senate Legislative Black Caucus, and Jacqueline Collins.

Representatives: Ken Dunkin, Chair of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus; Cynthia Soto, Chair of the Chicago Educational Facilities Task Force and Chair of the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus; Linda Chapa Lavia, Chair of the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee; and Toni Berrios. Aldermen: Leslie Hairston, John Arena, NickSposato, Robert Fioretti, Pat Dowell, Toni Foulkes and Rick Munoz.

Call your state representative and senator, plus your aldermen, and ask them to join as a co-sponsor of the moratorium. Find your elected officials here. If they already support the bill, call them to sayTHANK YOU!

40 kids in a class? Not a problem according to CPS

In defending the indefensible, CPS spokesperson Becky Carroll explained in the Chicago Tribune that the quality of the teacher matters more than class size: “You could have a teacher that is high-quality that could take 40 kids in a class and help them succeed."

Sadly, there are many CPS classrooms with 40 kids--and amazing teachers helping students do amazing things. But is that really what our school system should be striving for?

Is that what the mayor’s children get at the Lab School? Or, the children of CPS Chief Administrative Officer Tim Cawley, who lives in Winnetka? Would they sit by while their schools crammed 40 students in to their kids’ classrooms?

You know the answer. That’s why it’s so important to take a stand. When you help us fight these school closings, you’re sending a message to the mayor and his corporate backers. All of Chicago’s children deserve the same kind of education as their children get.

Other upcoming events

Civil disobedience trainings—learn how to fight back. Thursday, March 14, 6:30 p.m., St. Agatha’s Church, 3151 W. Douglas Blvd.

Saturday, March 16, 10:00 a.m., Pleasant Gift Missionary Baptist Church, 4526 S. Greenwood Ave.

From Seattle to Chicago: The Case Against High-stakes Testing. Forum with CTU President Karen Lewis and Jesse Hagopian, teacher at Garfield High School in Seattle and leader of MAP test boycott. March 19, 7 p.m., Mt. Carmel Missionary Baptist Church, 2976 S. Wabash.

P4T School Closing Strategy Session, March 20, 7 p.m., Luther Memorial Church, 2500 W. Wilson.

City-wide NO SCHOOL CLOSINGS rally, March 27, 4 p.m., Daley Plaza.

We have a lot of work ahead of us to ensure quality schools for all Chicago children and fairness and respect for educators. Won't you join us? Email to get involved and then forward this email to a friend!


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