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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Not the Way to Stop Bad Press: AFT to Protest John Stossel's "Stupid in America"

Education Intelligence Agency's Mike Antonucci reports American Federation of Teachers officials are so incensed with John Stossel's recent documentary on the sad state of education in America that the union is organizing a nationwide protest.

But to make sure onlookers and protesters alike understand the reasons behind the protest, AFT is having to distribute copies of the documentary - "Stupid in America" - to refresh memories. As Antonucci observes, this is not exactly a great PR strategy:

"By the time March 8 rolls around, most of the public will have to be reminded what the Stossel report was about. Indeed, UFT representatives are handing out VHS and DVD copies of the program to members.

"I'm hard-pressed to see how a business that requires eyes on advertising to make money will suffer from having its show passed around, talked about, and protested about, with mountains of free news coverage."

The lesson here may well be that the AFT and its co-monopolist in public education, the National Education Association, are in the early stages of learning just how 19th century monoplies truly are in the Internet age. When oceans of information are available instantly to everyone via the Internet, monoplies cannot survive for long.

Go here for Antonucci's full report in the latest edition of his weekly newsletter. You can also go here for the Stossel report.