Friday, April 05, 2013

Universities On Strike in Ghana

I'm seeing almost nothing in our media about it, even when I search (the NYTimes, so far as I can tell, has not one word), but Otto Pohl is blogging about the on-going strike of the university faculty in Ghana.

Here is the first post.

And more details here, as well as elsewhere at his blog.

What strikes (heh, see what I did there) me upon reading this is how unlikely this behavior is for American faculty.  I mean, we're being fucked non-stop here in America -- at my university, for instance, we've lost six full-time lines in the ten years I've been on staff here, all of them replaced with part-time workers (that is, we've lost six living wage jobs, which the administration has replaced with markedly less competent, less skilled adjunct labor, whom they pay criminally low wages (less than two thousand dollars, $1950, for a semester's work).  Each time we lose a full-time faculty, this is what happens.

Further, we have not had a significant pay raise since 2005.  Meanwhile, COL has skyrocketed, as have our medical costs.

We know why we're not getting pay raises; we know why full-time faculty are not being replaced -- the lack of support from our state legislatures is the direct cause.  (Legislatures used to fund 80% of the costs of universities, and now they support something like only 25%.) We know if we could compel legislators to give tax dollars to us (rather than spending that money on prisons or frivolous nonsense like passing stupid laws which they will have to defend uselessly and expensively in federal court), we would have better and stronger universities.

And not only do we not strike, here in America, it doesn't ever occur to us to strike.

Further, although we have a union (sort of), the AAUP, (1) most of us don't belong to it and (B) it has almost no power.

It's depressing.


dorki said...

A two-word phrase that properly describes the support of schools in the USA.

Criminal Neglect.

J. Otto Pohl said...

There is a lot on the strike in the Ghanaian media.

delagar said...

Nothing over here, though, sadly, Otto. At least nothing I can find.

Probably mostly that's how ignorant people here are about Africa.

The other part is (no doubt) how hostile our media is to the labor movement.

J. Otto Pohl said...

Yes, but the internet should get you the articles from Ghanaian newspapers and transcripts from Ghanaian radio. That is how I get most of my information.