(Guest post by Greg Forster)
I’m catching up on this a little late, but ALELR has connected a couple of dots and drawn a picture of things at the UFT that can only make you say “Epic Facepalm.”
OK, you do remember the whole Cue Card Check scandal? At the time, Randi Weingarten was so embarrassed that she was forced to go out and claim she knew nothing about all this – cue cards? what cue cards? – and would “make some changes in the union.”
I missed this at the time, but last summer Elizabeth Green (who also broke the Cue Card Check story) reported that Marvin Reiskin, the UFT political director, had taken early retirement in the aftermath of the scandal. He was lined up for retirement at the end of the year anyway, but forcing him out early – even a month early – beats doing nothing. It sends an internal signal, however muted.
Obviously UFT had to be looking for a replacement who would restore credibility. Their number one priority after such a humiliation must have been to bring in someone who would restore adult supervision – and, more importantly, be seen to do so – show the watching world that the grownups were back in charge at UFT.
So get this: the person tapped to play that role was Paul Egan.
I think the question now becomes: why does UFT have an organizational culture in which people like this consistently rise to the top, no matter how strong the external incentives against it?