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State workers making $95K a year going on strike
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College is not the real world.

I always thought it was an unfair premise.

Now I’m not too sure.

First, we have Cal Berkeley students moaning and groaning about the cost of an education yet they have no problem squandering expensive education time by engaging in skirmishes with authorities in a bid to create an Occupy Cal settlement.

Then we have the Penn State college students rioting because football coach Joe Paterno who makes $1.03 million a year lost his job because he essentially turned his head after doing the minimum legal requirement after being told one of his coaches was raping a 10-year-old boy in the Penn State showers.

And now we have California State University professors striking over the “unfairness” of them not getting pre-negotiated raises in the middle of the worst state budget crisis ever.

They are striking at two campuses on Thursday - Cal State Dominguez Hills and Cal State East Bay.

They contend they are doing it to make the world aware of the deplorable conditions they are expected to labor in. It seems they have had their workload increased and their pay frozen while their employer is losing substantial revenue. They are also miffed the CSU system may actually try to cut their salaries in the coming years. Welcome to the real world.

So how much do the poor, overworked CSUS professor make? The CSU website pouts the average professor salary for an academic year at $95,652, the average associate professors salary at $76,183, the average assistant professor at $67,028, the average instructor salary at $53,004, and the average lecturer salary at $58,006. The overall average yearly pay for all full-time faculty members is $78,916. And for those who have to labor for an entire year, their average salary is $107,502.

Keep in mind this does not include the Lexus-level of retirement and health benefits that the CSU faculty receives.

All of this is happening against a backdrop of massive budget cuts due to the state’s financial situation. For the current fiscal year, the CSU and University of California systems each lost $650 million in funding, about 20 percent, and could lose another $100 million each if the state takes in less revenue than anticipated. To offset those cuts, CSU raised tuition by more than 20 percent this academic year.

The faculty conducted a pre-strike picket at San Francisco State Tuesday banging drums and waving signs reading, “CSU faculty are and teach the 99 percent.”

Then they should take the hits the rest of the 99 percent has taken during this economic downturn. That includes a bigger workload, pay freezes, pay cuts and even job elimination.

As for the Occupy movement at Cal Berkeley, if you can blow off getting an education to make a redundant statement then refrain from complaining about your tuition. Better yet, don’t whine about paying more especially if your true motivation was to go to college so you could get a higher paying job.

And for the Penn State student supporters of Paterno, thanks for embracing situational ethics by getting outraged because winning and the money machine that is college football is not trumping principles.

Had a presidential contender been told by a subordinate of seeing one of their underlings raping a 10-year-old boy in the workplace and essentially only did the legal minimum, it’s a good bet the Penn State college students would probably have formed a lynch mob.

On second thought, maybe college is the real world.