The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Friday, November 05, 2004

CLOSE AIR SUPPORT: Reuters reports that an F-16 Air National Guard fighter jet strafed an elementary school in southern New Jersey when the pilot mistook the school for a target range yesterday. No one was hurt in the attack. While it is too early to know whether the effective use of air power will have a positive effect on the nation’s public schools, the National Education Association, the nation’s largest teachers union is taking no chances. Today, the NEA announced it would spend two billion dollars for a new antiaircraft defense system manufactured by a European arms consortium. Preliminary reports say that the system will be fully operational by the mid-term congressional elections in 2010.

There is, of course, the question of who will operate this system, as most teachers’ contracts do not cover the operation of air defense artillery during the school year, but it is unlikely that union work rules will permit teachers to defend the schools from air attack and that schools will rely on the custodial staff to use the system when they are not mopping and waxing the floors and clearing the used tampons out of the toilets in the girls’ room. Whether or not the custodians’ unions will permit their members to engage in military operations without a substantial pay raise remains a mystery at this point in time, but it seems that whatever the outcome local school taxes will have to go up in order to protect the public schools from further aerial bombardment.


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