|Buffalo News Editorial Board Celebrates Making Sense for Once. No, Really!|
You never know where you're going to find someone making sense.
The Buffalo News Editorial Outhouse actually agrees with Carl Paladino today that he's correct to hammer his fellow board members for failing to mine Kriner Cash's contract with Performance Objectives, you know like the ones they all think teacher contracts should be laced with. It's eerily similar to the point I made here the other day when I said there was never a better time or a better guy to pay according to his success in the various critical improvements he MUST accomplish.
Carl goes on at length to say that's because they're idiots who have no idea how to negotiate a contract and of course, as is always the case with our friend Carl, his lucid moment quickly draws to a close and he is once again enveloped in the dark, invective laced maelstrom we've all come to know -- the one his enablers and asskissers like to refer to as "Carl Being Carl." I really have to congratulate him this time though as he's managed to knock quite a few pins down in a relatively short rant -- short for Carl anyway.
I am encouraged and amused to see he's blasted MaryEllen Elia as "a rookie Commissioner" which is very true but because she's gallumping around like Agatha Trunchbull with that playground sour puss making threats, everyone else is too terrified to question or challenge anything she says. She is a rookie same as King was when he stumbled and bumbled his way to an out of state transfer as he failed miserably in the job he was handed while lacking practically every single qualification. I don't see Elia doing much better either.
Where King tried to condescend and pretend he was taking some educational and intellectual high road as critics hammered him for his asinine test and punish regimen, Elia seems more inclined to play the role of the bully, the goon you'd better not cross or else. It's mentioned in several places she was known in Florida for creating a hostile work atmosphere fueled with fear and intimidation. While King made pronouncements and tried to bluff his way past the irate parents and teachers avoiding eye contact and unscripted appearances, Elia is going to try staring people down with the Manson lamps and using tough talk about tool kits and "the law."
I guess you've got to look into your own "tool kit" when you take a job like this and figure which pose is going to be your most convincing. John King knew he couldn't scare a first grader away from the cookie plate on his best day so he played the aloof card seasoned with a dash of irritated petulance. Elia, it appears is going to fall back on her Niagara Falls roots even if they're only by marriage, with some kind of a Maggadino styled tough gal pose.
There is nothing in her personal vibe to indicate an open willing partner and/or listener. She projects the leaden glare of the heavy, the enforcer who was hired to put the kibosh on this opt out crap and take some people down if that's what it's going to take. I would assume her "toolkit" for Superintendents is also an opening salvo across their collective bow to let them know she will tolerate no nonsense from them and she is here to put a stop to Administrators supporting the Opt Out movement.
Back to Planet Paladino I am also encouraged to see him throwing high and inside at Kriner Cash, who, from what he's told us, is in a similar situation as Carl, as they both sit atop a sizeable cache of what he likes to call F-U money. The time out of town has really topped off Carl's battery and he came in with one of his greatest hits of all time in my book when he said Cash needed to install his people in top deputy positions "or be fitted for his career ending casket." Carl characterizes Cash not doing as ordered and hiring Kevin Eberle as number two in command as "messing with me."
Imagine spending a day in that head. You're out of town for the vote and the guy is hired anyway. You come back to town and say he'd better hire this guy for his right hand man and if he doesn't HE'S messing with YOU. Carl doesn't use the ABC of Antecedent/Behavior/Consequence we learned as special educators. In Carl's mind the Antecedent of him saying you better hire my guy is not part of the equation. No, in Carlthink, the Behavior would be Cash saying No, I don't want to put your guy in as my Number 2. From there he goes to the Consequence of calling Reddington's to send him over a catalogue of their finest mahogany containers.
While the three of them do their dance of egos, an untested rookie Commissioner on a mission, an unknown out of towner who refuses to buy a house or green bananas because he knows he's only going to be here for a minute and a loaded loose cannon who says and does whatever the hell he wants, I know a lot of B-Lo teachers have been setting up classrooms and buying school supplies this week. And in a few days they'll go to work without tweets or headlines or news cameras and they'll deal with whatever gets thrown at them professionally, passionately and without fanfare. The work that needs doing will be done by Buffalo teachers, not loudmouths or heavies. That's how it always gets done. I have never been more proud to be part of that effort. Here's to another great year.