A few days ago I was talking to a guy who is high up in the Illinois Federation of Teachers.
He told me that he didn’t understand the level of what he called vituperativeness in the IEA.
“But I guess it’s a family thing,” he said with a shrug.
I laughed to myself thinking, “Oh, so you know our Uncle Charlie.”
That would be the IEA’s Director of Communications Charles McBarron.
In service to whoever is President, whether it was Ken Swanson or now Cinda Klickna, he runs the IEA website and Facebook page with a bureaucratic and frequently incompetent iron fist.
A past leader in the IEA once laughingly compared IEA’s ability to control internal debate to that of Stalin.
Well Cinda is no Stalin. And IEA communications is no Pravda.
It’s more like an unintentional Onion.
A few years back I was the target of the anti-union Michigan-based Education Action Group. They had filed a FOIA request for all my work and union emails. At about the same time the In the News feature on the IEA website linked to an EAG affiliated faux news site and an article attacking the Michigan Education Association.
McBarron defended it as being informational.
Right. And Fox News is fair and balanced.
Yesterday In the News linked to a widely circulated op-ed piece by an alleged retired Illinois teacher now living in Florida who claimed his pension was earning him more money that he made when he taught.
Sounds like someone you know?
“Cut my pension,” wrote the guy.
On the IEA web site?
Of all the pension articles to link to, what on earth made Uncle Charlie pick that one?
I am reminded it was only a few weeks ago that Uncle Charlie, acting on the orders of President Klickna, refused to link to IEA member Glen Brown’s petition calling for a constitutional solution to revenue and pension issues.
Not exactly Stalin.
I just can’t decide if it’s Groucho, Harpo, Chico or Zeppo.