Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 83,407
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 83,407
Retired teacher who sees much harm to public education from the "reforms" being pushed by corporations. Privatizing education is the wrong way to go. Children can not be treated as products, thought of in terms of profit and loss.
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Before I post I usually do a search to determine the atmosphere on a particular topic. Since I am just starting to post here again after a year, I try not to post stuff to cause anger.
But wow! After so many sentiments effectively saying f*** Greenwald because he criticized the president....I started not to post the segment. I have changed my mind because the statement was made by a Florida blogger and MSNBC contributor. I will take my chances. It should get notice for the snide insult and the ugly tone toward Bradley Manning. Whatever a person's views of what he did, he does not deserve this kind of scorn.
Here's what I twittered about the article.
Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald
Here's the quote from the Guardian article.
Ever since I first reported the conditions of Manning's detention in December 2010, many of them not only cheered that abuse but grotesquely ridiculed concerns about it. Joy-Ann Reid, a former Obama press aide and now a contributor on the progressive network MSNBC, spouted sadistic mockery in response to the report: "Bradley Manning has no pillow?????" With that, she echoed one of the most extreme rightwing websites, RedState, which identically mocked the report: "Give Bradley Manning his pillow and blankie back."
That statement disturbed me, though I respected her as a blogger and often quoted her. I will remember it whenever I watch her on TV. I will try not to do so, but it will stick with me.
I don't have to agree with all Glenn Greenwald says, but I have read his work for years. I respect that he digs for his research, and that he is brave enough to post unpopular topics. That's how it should be at such a forum as this...we can discuss ideas without condemning someone.
I wrote sort of a good by post last December. A lot of people were having the same feelings. I thought of it today as I was doing more reading here, it stuck in my mind. I post about education mainly, and it often angers people when I say it is both parties involved in privatizing public education. It is the truth. There are many other bloggers here who have researched as well, and there is no doubt that the next four years for education are critical.
I and many others love the fact that education should be equal and free, and that instead of taking funds and resources away from public schools.....we should be giving to them.
Coming to DU in 2002 as more moderate and centrist....now finding that I am too liberal to fit in.
I really felt out of place here then a lot. I came from a Republican background (my parents were the first Democrats in the family). I began to realize how very little I knew of the world beyond my teaching career and raising my family. There wasn't much time for exploration of ideas outside of my re-certification classes, and my eyes were opened here every day.
There has been no acknowledgement from any leader in either party that teachers have become fearful about their jobs as the billionaire reformers move in. Not a single word. Arne Duncan has said he will continue on the same path of reforms. That's a scary thought.
So I posted a quote from Greenwald's article because I was stunned to read it. If you want to read the rest of today's article from the Guardian, you might be impressed. You may not agree with all of it, but that's how being informed works.
Posted by madfloridian | Sat Dec 1, 2012, 12:11 AM (108 replies)
Jindal (R-La.), who is frequently touted as a potential contender in the 2016 Republican presidential race, pushed the legislation through the state’s legislature in April. Two statewide teachers’ associations and a group of school boards filed legal challenges shortly thereafter.
Posted by madfloridian | Fri Nov 30, 2012, 07:23 PM (0 replies)
BATON ROUGE, La. — Gov. Bobby Jindal’s voucher program that uses tax dollars to send students to private schools was ruled unconstitutional Friday by a state judge who said it’s improperly funded through the public school financing formula.
Posted by madfloridian | Fri Nov 30, 2012, 05:50 PM (3 replies)
Glad to see them speaking out on this. Good for the CTU.
The Orlando Sentinel last year wrote about this same problem going on in Florida.
Orlando Sentinel: Florida charter schools are causing resegregation by race and ethnicity.
Segregation is making a comeback in Florida's public schools with the new wave of charter schools springing up across the state.
Posted by madfloridian | Fri Nov 30, 2012, 01:50 PM (2 replies)
In 2004 Mother Jones had an article about Grover Norquist titled The Soul of the New Machine. The article referred back to one by Michael Scherer in the 1990s.
I find myself wondering why and how someone like Michelle Rhee has gained so much power to influence education. Why does media pander to her and never criticize? I have often wondered the same about Grover Norquist. How in the world did he get so many politicians to bow to his no tax pledge. Who was behind their power plays?
I guess the answer in both cases would be money and behind the scenes power brokers. And the lack of a strong opposition hasn't helped. Too much bipartisanship?
From Mother Jones 2004:
Grover Norquist: The Soul of the New Machine
"It's the most powerful, nihilistic movement in Washington today," says Ralph Nader, who recently attended one of Norquist's meetings to give his views on corporate welfare. "It is such a cold-blooded atmosphere it would sustain icicles."
Norquist's agenda reeks of rigid libertarianism, even the name of his group.
"Norquist calls it the "Leave-Us-Alone Coalition," a grouping of gun owners, the Christian right, homeschoolers, libertarians, and business leaders that he has almost single-handedly managed to unite. The common vision: an America in which the rich will be taxed at the same rates as the poor, where capital is freed from government constraints, where government services are turned over to the free market, where the minimum wage is repealed, unions are made irrelevant, and law-abiding citizens can pack handguns in every state and town. "My ideal citizen is the self-employed, homeschooling, IRA-owning guy with a concealed-carry permit," says Norquist. "Because that person doesn't need the goddamn government for anything."
The closing paragraph of the article is like a snapshot of today's America. It's amazing how he succeeded in reaching so many of his goals.
"By the age of 12, he already knew that government was bad, that the Soviet Union must be eliminated, that public monopolies were worse than the private sector, that social freedom was more important than social fairness. He isn't about to change his mind now. "We are deadly serious," he declares. "We do intend to have a smaller and less intrusive government, and every time the government gets smaller there are fewer Democratic precinct workers in the world." It is, he says, a virtuous cycle. "We can create our own majorities. We've been doing that for the last 20 years. And I'm cheerful because my team is winning."
It's a full two pages to read, but it is well worth it to see what can happen in just over a decade or so of Democrats using the philosophy of the centrist think tanks like the DLC and the Third Way.
Bipartisanship with extremists has not worked, and it is a truly dangerous game to play.
Posted by madfloridian | Thu Nov 29, 2012, 05:05 PM (3 replies)
Thomas Friedman today seemed to say that Education Secretary Arne Duncan would be a great Secretary of State because he survived negotiations with the Chicago Teachers Union.
He claims he is not really serious, but it is so ludicrous to even mention it. It is rather insulting to teachers also.
He implies that Arne Duncan can be considered a leading authority on the world's education. In my mind Arne Duncan is a tool of the Billionaire Boys' Club who are taking over our schools.
I have to assume he is serious, otherwise he would have labeled it satire.
My Secretary of State
Let’s start with the obvious. A big part of the job is negotiating. Well, anyone who has negotiated with the Chicago Teachers Union, as Duncan did when he was superintendent of the Chicago Public Schools before going to Washington, would find negotiating with the Russians and Chinese a day at the beach. A big part of being secretary of education (and secretary of state) is getting allies and adversaries to agree on things they normally wouldn’t — and making them think that it was all their idea. Trust me, if you can cut such deals with Randi Weingarten, who is president of the American Federation of Teachers, you can do them with Vladimir Putin and Bibi Netanyahu.
There is an interesting post in the Comments section
"As we are seeing in Egypt, suddenly creating a mass democracy without improving mass education is highly unstable."
Whatever Friedman was trying to say, he did not say it very well.
Crossposted at Twitter
Posted by madfloridian | Tue Nov 27, 2012, 11:57 PM (8 replies)
Frank Cerabino of the Palm Beach Post managed to fit a lot of the outrageous things that happen here in one post, things that make Florida unique among states. He could not possibly have gotten all of them included, and a few paragraphs do not do his column justice.
Snowbirds, you’ve missed a lot since we saw you last
So while you were gone, we’ve added a 12th public university in Florida while also cutting $300 million to the university system. I know it doesn’t make sense.
He also mentions the school prayer law that is "so unconstitutional that the Florida School Boards Association is recommending that all the public schools in the state just ignore the law."
Florida...things are different here.
Posted by madfloridian | Tue Nov 27, 2012, 02:28 AM (2 replies)
Note from You Tube:
This is an edited version of the exchange - you can hear it all here: http://media.newstalk.ie/extra/1602/popup
This truly moved me to tears. The video has been posted before, but we should expect our party to listen to this and speak this powerfully. No more wishy washy.
Posted by madfloridian | Mon Nov 26, 2012, 12:23 AM (8 replies)
Florida wants to raise property taxes to pay for more charter schools, yet public schools lack funds
Our public schools are greatly in need of resources now. Yet here is a state panel recommending that our taxes go up to fund more charter schools.
If our property taxes go up, the public schools should benefit. I don't want my taxpayer money used for education services that will be turned over to private companies that lack any local control.
A state-appointed education task force is recommending increasing property taxes in an attempt to make funding more equitable between charter and traditional schools.
Even though many call themselves "public charter schools", they are not able to be regulated by local school boards.
The article is correct. It is "siphoning public money to go to private entities".
This is really an unfair push by education "reformers". Many charter schools in Florida are closing for failing grades or financial failure. One charter school in Orange County, FL that was closed put the principal first and the students last.
"While Young was getting a handsome salary, the school, made up of concrete portables, lacked computers, a library or a cafeteria for some 180 mostly at-risk and underprivileged students.
There are other examples, but one is very recent in Lee County, Florida.
We’re having these situations, it’s almost a regular thing for charter schools,” said board member Jeanne Dozier, referring to Richard Milburn Academy. “We’re talking about kids here, this is not a business. This is not an easy task for us, it’s not something we want to do.”
Imagine running a public school with such carelessness.
The company that manages the school refuses to respond to the county's queries.
There were two other charter schools closed for questionable financial dealings.
I read the word "error" in the article, but that is not an error. It is not just an error when the school reports that 465 students were in a course, yet they can only document 13 students. That's just dishonest and fraudulent.
North Nicholas High and Coronado High schools reported inaccurate numbers of students participating in on-the-job training programs, the state audit shows.
Claiming 465 students while only proving 13 students? That is no mistake.
That was taxpayer money they owed. And now the state panel is trying to raise our taxes to pay for more shenanigans like this.
It appears only public school teachers have to be accountable. The reformers can get away with anything.
Crossposted at Twitter
Posted by madfloridian | Sat Nov 24, 2012, 06:49 PM (32 replies)
That is called infiltrating.
From the 2009 annual report of the Broad Foundation, one of the major groups pushing education "reform" and charter schools. They admit they as much as enlisted Randi Weingarten, president of the AFT, from their beginning and have allied with her quite often.
This is how the groups that fund the education reforms have infiltrated the unions without anyone noticing.
" Teacher unions have always been a formidable voice in public
Not just Randi Weingarten. Andy Stern of the SEIU is a member of the Broad Foundation.
Slick Broad Foundation Roped in Andy Stern -Scoop From Ravitch
Eli Broad and his billionaire buddies Bill Gates and the Waltons can be very good with coloring education deform policies with "liberal" or "civil rights" language.
Diana Ravitch's blog from July listed some of the outrageous antics of the Broad Institute grads who make their ways to the schools as superintendents and other leaders. She also lists some of them.
Does the Public Have a Right to Know about Broad Academy?
A Broad-trained superintendent in North Carolina left Michelle Rhee’s team and was hired by a Tea Party majority of the local school board in Wake County, North Carolina that wanted to eliminate the district’s successful desegregation policy, even if it meant resegregation of the schools. That board was ousted last fall. The superintendent has stayed on, and the choice plan now in effect seems likely to undo years of work to avoid resegregation. The schools of Wake County were lauded (before the Tea Party takeover) as a model of desegregation by Gerald Grant in his excellent book, Hope and Despair in the American City: Why There Are No Bad Schools in Raleigh.
When I once posted that Randi Weingarten was on the faculty of Broad superintendent's academy I caught some flak.
However these superintendents who are trained and sent out with so much money and power behind them will most certainly have their loyalties defined in advance.
Posted by madfloridian | Wed Nov 21, 2012, 12:17 AM (21 replies)