02/06/2011 12:56 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

United Teachers Los Angeles To Elect New President

The eight candidates vying to be president of the powerful Los Angeles teachers union share a general belief that public education is endangered by malevolent forces outside and corrupt incompetency inside.

From their perspective, corporations seek to bleed dollars from schools and collude with powerful nonprofits, such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; a top-heavy, punitive school district bureaucracy stifles innovation while squandering or squirreling away millions; charter schools abuse teachers, drain public resources and take only the best students; and traditional schools need a lot more money.