Matt Damon
Defends Teachers

Matt Damon gave teachers everywhere a huge boost when he schooled a reporter on just how important educators are.

Just when we thought Matt Damon couldn't get any hotter, he goes ahead and proves us wrong.

Matt Damon schools a teacher

The liberal Oscar-winner was at the Save Our Schools rally in Washington D.C. last weekend with his mother, a longtime teacher. A reporter from a Libertarian website approached Damon to ask him whether or not teachers get lazy when they get tenure.

That's when all the fun started.

The reporter smugly reasoned that Damon works hard because he worries about his job, so shouldn't teachers have to do the same thing?

"So you think job insecurity is what makes me work hard? 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, this intrinsically paternalistic view of problems that are much more complex than that," the newly bald Matt Damon said to the reporter.

"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 [expletive] salary and really long hours and do that job unless you really love to do it?"

Exactly, Matt. Plus, he's a hugely successful -- and rich -- actor. Paying the bills isn't what motivates him to act at this point.

The tension filled the air until the cameraman spoke.

"Aren't 10 percent of teachers bad, though? Ten percent of teachers are bad," he declared. Damon's adorable mother asked where he got his numbers.

"I don't know. Ten percent of people in any profession maybe should think of something else," he said.

"Maybe you're a [expletive] cameraman," Damon replied.

Watch Matt Damon's verbal smackdown (NSFW -- language)

We love you, Matt.

Do you agree with Matt Damon or the reporter?

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Comments on "Matt Damon rips reporter a new one"

Todd August 09, 2011 | 8:39 PM

Those who can do, will do. Those that can't do, teach!

Deidra August 09, 2011 | 2:32 PM

@Graham - We owe it to our Teachers to provide them not only a high paying salary, but to provide them our support. These men and women work hard teaching our children and get paid squat!!! Check your facts you idiot!

San Francisco August 07, 2011 | 10:46 PM

To Graham: as the niece of two hardworking teachers of over 35 years I find your comment insulting as well as ignorant. You clearly have no comprehension of the long hours, stress, dedication and committment that is required of a teacher, especially in light of staff cutbacks, supersized classrooms that often combine age groups, sociology- economic challenges that often force teachers to be social workers, on top of low salaries that make it impossible for teachers working in the Bay Area to afford housing close to their schools. "Long vacations" as you call them are often spent trying to make extra money or preparing for the next school year. And "tenure" is not a norm as you may think. Severe state budget cuts combined with a poor economy means working twice the hours for salaries that are often LOWER than the salary of an entry level secretary. Why don't you check your facts before mouthing your opinion?

Andrew August 06, 2011 | 11:23 PM

You have no right to call anyone an idiot. Teachers are being held more accountable by the failure of elite economists with a firm grasp of economic fundamentals. The economic disaster was caused by unfettered incentives of greed. Wall street's failure in the early part of the 20th century is what led people to believe there was a better alternative to elite gambling, which is what wall street is an continues to be. Teachers need to improve. Capitalism needs to improve. America is in decline. Fundamentals of economics are meaningless. They have driven us into the ground. Fundamentals of capitalism involve destroying lives by lying. Unions get out of hand too. Tenure is far more difficult to accomplish because their is less money available to secure competent passionate teachers. Teachers should not be underpaid. Wall street bankers and people who rely on the laws of economics rather than the laws of ethics are the problem, and they should be underpaid until the debt is paid off. They caused it. Not teachers. Percentage-wise, people at firms such as JP Morgan commit acts that should be serious crimes that affect corporate workers as well as state and government employees. Who are YOU trying to defend? Where do YOU work? Capitalism doesn't involve anything such as "too big to fail". The markets should have annihilated the banking industries, and you know it. They conned the American people, government, we were robbed of our money left to rot, thanks to "economic fundamentals." People who say teaching is a stress free job reveal themselves to be ignorant. You can't back your position up by facts or experience. I can.

pbmynx August 03, 2011 | 11:26 AM

@Graham "relatively stress free job" are you kidding??? That is by far the most ignorant comment. And I mean ignorant in it's true definition. Your lack of knowledge of what teachers do on a daily basis is hilarious. Due to the current economic state of our country many teachers have classrooms with more students than desks. Also, most districts don't have enough paper to get through an entire school. Therefore, if you truly think that managing a classroom of 35 children and educating them to be well rounded individuals intellectually, emotionally, socially, and physically is a "relatively stress free job" by all means Graham I dare you to try being teacher for a week. On a side not, if you really think that teachers have "generous vacations" your crazy. Most teachers have second jobs to pay off their student loans because they accept their "ty salary" to teach your children. Those teachers also take their work home with them every night, either grading papers, reading essays, or creating fun and engaging ways of learning. So, while corporate America sits at their plush desk jobs, emailing clients, wasting paper a teacher would kill for, and eating their catered lunch remember who taught you your abc's in the the first place with limited resources and on a "ty salary."

Fred August 03, 2011 | 10:35 AM

Keeping minorities down on the liberal plantation, where we know what's best. Wouldn't want their teachers actually held accountable in any way. Perhaps we should have their "teachers" change their scores like they did in Atlanta. Matt didn't rip anyone a new one. He revealed himself to be just another knee-jerk supporter of the status quo.

Lea August 03, 2011 | 10:20 AM

a relatively stress free job with generous vacations. Really? Many teachers work summer jobs. Also, Google No Child Left stress my butt. If it's so easy, why don't you do it, Graham?

Graham August 03, 2011 | 10:12 AM

This was the most idiotic thing I've heard in a while. The fundamental rule of economics is that people need incentives to do work, period. Yeah, he might love his job as an actor, but I seriously doubt he'd work nearly as hard if millions of dollars weren't waiting for him every time he makes a movie. The lack of incentives is why communism and socialism failed. ELementary, middle, and high school teachers have absolutely no reason to be tenured (and unfirable). Extremely few are ever actually dismissed thanks to the union contracts, which make it nearly impossible to fire anyone, even if they're molesting kids or doing other outrageously terrible things. Don't believe me? There are many examples of teachers practically getting away with murder thanks to unions. ANd underpaid? Last I heard, the median teacher income is $53,000 a year. That's more than the average HOUSEHOLD income. PLus, it's a relatively stress free job with generous vacations.

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