Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Message To Alexander Nazaryan: Teachers Held In Much Higher Esteem Than Journalists

An insult tweet from Newsweek journalist Alexander Nazaryan was sent Arthur Goldstein's way after Arthur jumped into the fray between Nazaryan and Louis C.K. over Common Core:

Nazaryan's been getting beaten up for a few days now after he insulted Louis C.K. for criticizing the Common Core while not being an "expert" on education.

Louis C.K. has dispensed with Nazaryan's criticism prettily handily, as is to be expected from a guy who's worked stand-up and knows how to handle drunks, idiots and hecklers in an audience.

Arthur's not worked the stand-up mike that I know of, but he's handled his share of Internet trolls over the years, so he doesn't need me to defend him against Alexander Nazaryan, but something about Nazaryan's statement really stuck in my craw, so I jumped in anyway:

And here's the Pew poll results backing up that Americans overwhelmingly still respect teachers and think they add a lot to society as compared to journalists, who rank low on the respect and value-added list:

Americans continue to hold the military in high regard, with more than three-quarters of U.S. adults (78%) saying that members of the armed services contribute “a lot” to society’s well-being. That’s a modest decline from 84% four years ago, the last time the Pew Research Center asked the public to rate various professions. But the military still tops the list of 10 occupational groups, followed closely by teachers, medical doctors, scientists and engineers. A solid majority of the public says each of those occupations contributes a lot to society.


 Compared with the ratings four years ago, journalists have dropped the most in public esteem. The share of the public saying that journalists contribute a lot to society is down 10 percentage points, from 38% in 2009 to 28% in 2013. The drop is particularly pronounced among women (down 17 points). About as many U.S. adults now say journalists contribute “not very much” or “nothing at all” to society (27%) as say they contribute a lot (28%).

Pew is polling the American public at large, not the elite media and political circles journalists like Nazaryan run in, so he might be surprised to find out that the public at large doesn't share the elite's disdain and contempt for teachers.

He might also be surprised to find out that only 28% of the American public believe he and his journalism colleagues add anything of value to society.

When you live and work in an insular circle the way many of these elitist journalists do, it's difficult to understand that the people you chat with while sipping cucumber martinis do not share the same values as the public at large.

You can apply Nazaryan's tunnel vision over the respect the American public feels for teachers to his esteem for the Common Core as well - it's informed as much by the insular world he lives and works in as it is by anything else.


  1. He's the same jerk who couldn't handle teaching in Brooklyn Latin. I wrote a post about him.

    1. Those who can't teach write for bankrupt media publications that long ago ceased to live in print...

  2. After Nazaryan tweeted that his wife agreed with Diane Ravitch, I thought he was coming to some level of understanding. Now, he is tweeting reviews of Reign of Errors written by Michael Petrilli and calling Diane out because she had been pro-NCLB. It would be find if Nazarayan did some of his own research and came to a pro-CCSS conclusion, but he is another lazy excuse for a journalist. No wonder they are losing the respect of this country.

    1. Many of these pro-CCSS elites are smug, arrogant know-it all's, but its good in a way that they are.

      They're helping to fuel the backlash against reform and CCSS.

      The self-satisfied words of Alexander Nazaryan writing in Newsweek is not going to convince anybody that CCSS is swell.

      And that's true even if anybody were reading Newsweek - which nobody is.

      The more a guy like Nazaryan and other elitist press types condescend to CCSS critics, the more the anti-CCSS movement will grow.