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Dave Swindle


August 4, 2011 - 6:28 am

Ever since I went and saw Good Will Hunting with my Dad when it first came out — I think I was in junior high at the time — it’s been a favorite.

The film is so entertaining and so much fun to watch that I’m willing to overlook its Marxist themes and shout-outs to such totalitarian radicals as Noam Chomsky and Howard Zinn.

Why? Because scenes like the two below are so wonderful.  [Warning - some R-rated language]

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How is it possible for anyone not to like this scene? Who wouldn’t want to be in this position?

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Today at FrontPage I have an article hammering Matt Damon for blindly supporting the teacher union policies that have made it so hard to fire bad teachers who screw up kids’ lives:

Fields: In acting there isn’t job security, right? There is an incentive to work hard and be a better actor because you want to have a job. So why isn’t it like that for teachers?

Damon:  You think job insecurity is what makes me work hard?

Fields: Well you have an incentive to work harder.

Damon: [Shakes head] I want to be an actor, that’s not an incentive. That’s the thing. See you take this MBA-style thinking, right? It’s the problem with ed policy right now. It’s this intrinsically paternalistic view of problems that are much more complex than that. It’s like saying a teacher is going to get lazy when they have tenure. A teacher wants to teach. I mean why else would you take a shitty salary and really long hours and do that job unless you really love to do it?

Cameraman:  Ten percent of teachers are bad… Ten percent of people in any profession maybe should think of something else.

Damon: Well, OK, maybe you’re a shitty cameraman, I don’t know.

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The Left has been able to dupe too many like Damon for far too long by casting conservatives as “anti-teacher.” It’s time to turn this rhetoric around. The real people who are “anti-teacher” are leftists who support the protection of incompetent teachers and refuse to allow schools to reward exceptional teachers.

David Swindle is the associate editor of PJ Media. He writes and edits articles and blog posts on politics, news, culture, religion, and entertainment. He edits the PJ Lifestyle section and the PJ columnists. Contact him at DaveSwindlePJM @ and follow him on Twitter @DaveSwindle. He has worked full-time as a writer, editor, blogger, and New Media troublemaker since 2009, at PJ Media since 2011. He graduated with a degree in English (creative writing emphasis) and political science from Ball State University in 2006. Previously he's also worked as a freelance writer for The Indianapolis Star and the film critic for He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and their Siberian Husky puppy Maura.
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