As usual, my two or three cents before you jump into the article (20130116_ASU_Contracts):
The president of Arizona State University along with the administration are proposing ending one-year contracts for roughly 1/3 of benefits eligible employees. Make no mistake, this means less job security combined with the already below-market wages for those employees. Allow me to draw a parallel to corporate America:
Corporate America: Executives including presidents, CEOs, board members, etc. all look out for one another. They take actions to maximize their compensation (big stock packages) and job security (expensive golden parachutes) while also taking actions to minimize pay of the labor force (anti-competitive agreements) and reduce their job security (little to no contracts). Executive job security and high compensation come at the expense of the broader labor force.
ASU’s recent push: same thing. Replace executives with “higher level university administration” and labor force with everyone else.
I hope everyone is beginning to see the trend in our current state of capitalism. The few (1%) extract wealth from the many (99%) be it in a public-good taxpayer funded university (ASU), or a private industry company like HP (see recent post on Meg Whitman’s $30M+ in compensation while losing money for HP). In both cases the 1% are able to maintain their high compensation and job security while suppressing the pay of the 99%.
The ASU president thinks it is a great idea to go performance-based and eliminate contracts. Fine, why doesn’t he lead by tearing up his own contract and going performance based? There is one problem: who evaluates the 1%? In corporate america it is other 1%ers. Will we see the same environment that we do in corporate america where “performance” is defined by those who are being evaluated?