'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

One Rule for Them, Another for Us 

Apparently, universities, even public ones, operate in an alternative universe, along with transnational financial institutions:

The University of California's worst financial crisis in years has not prevented the hiring of high-salaried administrative talent or the awarding of pay raises, promotions and perks to a dozen executives, university records show.The new appointments reflect the university's commitment to providing "management effectiveness and accountability," said UC spokesman Paul Schwartz, adding that the system also needs to provide competitive salaries and benefits to attract and retain those qualified to run a major academic institution.

Last week, for example, the governing Board of Regents appointed two executives at salaries of more than $350,000 a year and authorized paid administrative leaves to two former campus chancellors - one receiving $402,200 a year and the other $315,000.

Over the last two months, the board also granted pay increases of as much as 22.3 percent to a half dozen senior managers and approved higher salary ranges for several additional department manager positions at UCSF and at the university's headquarters in Oakland.

But such appointments, pay raises and perks have infuriated UC's primary union of 11,000 staff members, University Professional and Technical Employees Local 9119, which called Tuesday for a hiring freeze of UC administrators earning more than $200,000 a year.

Raises and bonuses for them, austerity for us. That's the rule that will they will continue to vigorously apply, until we stop it. Much like executives with financial institutions, they are grabbing everything that's not nailed down before the entire rotten edifice collapses. Meanwhile, economists at UCLA and the University of the Pacific forecast over 12% unemployment for California before the recession loosens its grip.

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