Once upon a time, a district came to its teachers and said, "Things are kinda bleak. Can you help?" and the teachers said, "yes." And then the district said, "We'll make it up to you, we promise..." and then the teachers waited.
And one negotiation cycle went by and the teachers accepted it when they were told, 'We aren't in a good position to make it up, yet... but maybe we will be some day soon." And the teachers waited.
And the next negotiation session came, and the district said, "It's close, but it's not there, yet... give us a little more time." And the teachers waited.
And then people from the district went on TV and to the newspaper and said "Lookee!! We are better off now!" and members of the legislature said "we've made things better, so schools can be better and teachers can get what they've given up in the past" and the teachers said, "Um...remember that thing we talked about?" and the district said, "No.. .what? You're crazy! We never said that. We can't do anything anyway, there's no money."
And the teachers said "But what about this thing you just said to the paper and TV?" and the district said 'What? What thing. Never said it. Isn't right. Isn't true. Wow. Look at those crazy teachers." And members of the legislature said, "We voted for more money and gave the districts more money."
And then the district wrote to the newspaper about how everything was fair and good and teachers were getting a great deal. And the people said "Yeah. You teachers are crazy, asking for stuff you were promised like that means anything, plus stop being so greedy."
And the teachers looked at each other and said, " Well. Apparently we are being toyed with by some, and ridiculed by others. But we are going to be content and take it with a smile. Fairness means earning less money in 2014 than we earned in 1998. We are reasonable, pampered people with a need to experience reality for the first time in our sheltered lives because Jake and Curt and Raymond have made us see the error of our ways and accept that despite advanced degrees and decades of experience, entry level, stagnant wages are all we deserve and to ask for anything more is worthy of public shaming."
Reposted from a comment originally made here.