HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » RandySF » Journal
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU
Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 201 Next »

RandySF

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit Area, MI
Home country: USA
Current location: San Francisco, CA
Member since: Wed Oct 29, 2008, 02:53 PM
Number of posts: 6,434

About Me

Husband, father and liberal Democrat. I am a native Michigander living in San Francisco who is a citizen of the world.

Journal Archives

San Francisco Supervisor has affair with staffer, then tells her to find another job.

San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos, a former mayoral candidate, has acknowledged that he had an affair with his top office aide — a relationship that appears to have skirted the boundaries of city rules.

Avalos said his $95,082-a-year aide, Raquel Redondiez, went on unpaid leave in May but has not officially quit.

“We are not together, but we have shared our feelings for one another, and I felt it was most appropriate for her to find employment outside this office,” said Avalos, 50.

“I let a lot of people down, and I’m really sorry,” Avalos said.


http://blog.sfgate.com/matierandross/2014/07/16/s-f-supervisor-avalos-admits-affair-with-top-staffer/#12538101=0

Arizona charter school history book says whites envied “freedom” of slaves

The nonprofit Americans United for Separation of Church and State is calling out one of the oldest public charter schools in Arizona for using two books from crank and Glenn Beck favorite Cleon Skousen that promote racism and a Christian nationalist interpretation of American history, reports the Arizona Republic.

The school, Heritage Academy, is apparently using two of Skousen’s most popular books, “The 5,000 Year Leap” and “The Making of America,” in an attempt to educate its student body of the ways in which America was actually founded by hardcore Jerry Falwell-style Christian conservatives.

This is not the same thing as trying to indoctrinate children, however, claims Earl Taylor, the school’s founder and principal. ”Our purpose is not to convert students to different religious views,” Taylor promised. “It is to show them that religion influenced what the Founders did.”

Worse still, some parts of the Skousen books being given to Heritage Academy’s students — and presented as textbooks, rather than historical documents — also depict American slavery in a racist and risibly sympathetic light.

According to legal scholar Garret Epps, “parts of major textbook … present a systematically racist view of the Civil War” with a “long description of slavery in the book” arguing that slavery was “beneficial to African-Americans and that Southern racism was caused by the ‘intrusion’ of Northern abolitionists and advocates of equality for the freed slaves.”


http://www.salon.com/2014/07/14/arizona_charter_school_history_book_says_whites_envied_freedom_of_slaves/

Texan who met Obama calls Rick Perry an "old queen"

"That's when he laughed and said, 'Bump me,'" Webb says.

"That's my favorite part because it was cool to get a joke in. In all the photos , I look like a dead fish, but it was cool. I do stand-up, so it was nice to have some interaction based on, hopefully, something funny."

"If Rick Perry would've walked in, I would have lost my job. I would've taken that old queen to town," Webb adds.

http://www.austinchronicle.com/daily/gay-place/2014-07-11/fist-bumps-for-equal-rights/

Retired Teacher: Abolish Middle School

They do a terrible job of educating kids, especially the ones who need it most.

America should do away with middle schools, which are educational wastelands. We need to cut the middle out of middle schools, either by combining them with the guidance and nurturing that children find in elementary school, or with the focus on adult success that we expect from our high schools.

For much as half of middle schools across the country, national statistics show substantial performance gaps, especially in math and reading achievement, between middle school and high school. It’s time to admit that middle school models do not work—instead, they are places where academics stall and languish.

From my experience as an educator for 28 years with the New York City Department of Education, middle schools are rife with academic dysfunction that causes irreparable harm to children in later years, when performance really counts. One challenge is the ill-prepared teacher. Chancellors and school systems have not focused enough on the fact that one can be a great teacher of elementary school, a star high school teacher, but still not be prepared to teach middle school. Too often in middle school the teachers have never received real professional development training to help students succeed in high school. And, more importantly, there is little to no time for teachers to focus on establishing strong relationships with their students, which has a tremendous impact on how students perform in the classroom, particularly for boys. A teacher’s ability to relate to his or her students is not icing on the cake of serious academics—I believe it is the whole cake.

Academic challenges coupled with a student’s emotional development are a recipe for failure. In middle school, hormones rage: kids show up in the principal’s office and burst into tears without knowing why. Peer pressure, more than any other time in students’ lives—pressure directly from classmates and friends or indirectly through pop culture and social media—can be overwhelming. For many students, their only goal is to feel included and accepted by their peers.


http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/07/12/why-middle-school-should-be-abolished.html

DEA investigating prescription drug abuse in NFL locker rooms.

The NFL, still reeling from allegations that it covered up the long-term dangers of concussions, is now facing a possible blitz from federal drug agents looking into the abuse of painkillers and other drugs.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has quietly launched an investigation into the abuse of prescription medication in NFL locker rooms, three sources familiar with the probe told the Daily News.

Agents from the DEA’s New York division are reaching out to former players to learn how NFL doctors and trainers get access to potent narcotics such as Percodan and Vicodin or anti-inflammatories such as Toradol, a nonaddictive prescription drug widely used around the league to treat pain.

“They want to find out who provided and distributed the drugs to football players,” one source said.


http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/i-team/feds-probe-prescription-drug-abuse-nfl-locker-rooms-sources-article-1.1864651#ixzz37PJdBo9c

Latest World Cup Head Injury Shows FIFA Really, Really Doesn’t Care About Concussions

In a tournament that didn’t need another symbol of FIFA’s lax attitude toward concussions, we have the best evidence yet that the governing body needs to change its policies right now. In the 17th minute of the World Cup final, Germany’s Christoph Kramer was struck inadvertently on the left side of his head and fell to the ground in clear distress.

He stayed in the game for roughly 15 more minutes after that brutal knock to the skull, and was clearly suffering the effects of the blow. When he was finally, mercifully substituted out of the game, Kramer appeared glassy-eyed. It’s a wonder that he managed to stay on the field that long, and it’s a wonder that Germany's team doctors allowed him to do so.

In Argentina’s semifinal match against the Netherlands, defender Javier Mascherano cracked his head and went right back in the game. The same thing happened earlier in the tournament with Uruguay’s Álvaro Pereira. In the New York Times, Juliet Macur noted, “Whether FIFA plans to change how it deals with game-time concussions is unclear, but what is obvious is that it didn’t do anything quickly enough to protect players like Mascherano.” She added, “Right now, though, FIFA is showing its cowardice by saying the onus is on the team doctor to determine if a player is healthy enough to return to the match. It’s as if FIFA hasn’t been following the issue of head injuries in sports at all.”

Business Insider’s Cork Gaines points out that coaches are reluctant to use any of their three substitutions on account of a head injury. He proposes a reasonable-sounding solution: “FIFA is going to have to allow special temporary substitutions when a head injury is suspected, something already being tested in Rugby. Allow teams to enter a substitute while the injured player is tested along with a time limit on the return of the player (e.g. if the player is not cleared to return in 12 minutes, he cannot return).”



http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_spot/2014/07/13/christoph_kramer_latest_world_cup_head_injury_shows_fifa_really_really_doesn.html

Quayle speechwriter called interracial marriage of Obama's parents 'unnatural'.

Until I came across this article by Cliff Kincaid of Accuracy in Media, which I regard as factual — with all that that implies — the questions about Obama’s background that should have come naturally never quite rose to the surface of my mind. Barack Obama is the new man, of course. His mixed race is a symbol of that. Just like Tiger Woods — as we have read, endlessly. What’s to wonder about?

But maybe it’s not so simple. Obama and I are roughly the same age. I grew up in liberal circles in New York City — a place to which people who wished to rebel against their upbringings had gravitated for generations. And yet, all of my mixed race, black/white classmates throughout my youth, some of whom I am still in contact with, were the product of very culturally specific unions. They were always the offspring of a white mother, (in my circles, she was usually Jewish, but elsewhere not necessarily) and usually a highly educated black father. And how had these two come together at a time when it was neither natural nor easy for such relationships to flourish? Always through politics. No, not the young Republicans. Usually the Communist Youth League. Or maybe a different arm of the CPUSA. But, for a white woman to marry a black man in 1958, or 60, there was almost inevitably a connection to explicit Communist politics. (During the Clinton Administration we were all introduced to then U. of Pennsylvania Professor Lani Guinier — also a half black/half Jewish, red diaper baby.)

I don’t know how Barak Obama’s parents met. But the Kincaid article referenced above makes a very convincing case that Obama’s family, later, (mid 1970s) in Hawaii, had close relations with a known black Communist intellectual. And, according to what Obama wrote in his first autobiography, the man in question — Frank Marshall Davis — appears to have been Barack’s own mentor, and even a father figure. Of course, since the Soviet Union itself no longer exists, it’s an open question what it means practically to have been politically mentored by an official Communist. Ideologically, the implications are clearer.


http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/159088/obamas-political-origins/lisa-schiffren

They called this gentleman the "Prince of Pork"? I'd call him a damn good congressman.

WEST FRANKFORT, Ill. (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. Ken Gray, who represented southern Illinois in Congress and earned the nickname the "Prince of Pork" for bringing $7 billion in projects to his district, died Saturday at age 89.

Parker-Reedy Funeral Home in West Frankfort said Sunday that Gray died at a hospital in Herrin after a long illness. Gray was first elected to Congress in 1954 and served ten terms until high blood pressure forced him to retire in 1974. He returned to Congress in 1984 to serve two terms but retired again, citing a muscular disorder caused by a tick bite during a congressional visit to Brazil.

Gray, a Democrat, was a colorful figure during his time in Washington. He was known for bringing federal projects to his depressed district, including a federal prison, an interstate highway, post offices and hospitals.

"They call Rend Lake pork," Gray said in a 2008 interview with The Southern Illinoisan in Carbondale (http://bit.ly/1tEGWsz ). "Yet the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, six years ago when there was tremendous flooding, said that because of Rend Lake holding the water back, more than $100 million worth of property downstream was saved. If that is pork, pass me the plate, because I'll take another heaping serving."


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/13/ken-gray-dead_n_5582469.html

Moms With Guns founder calls for Obama's assassination.

Sharing a photo on her Facebook page of President Obama’s recent visit to Texas, the founder of the Moms With Guns website commented on the photo, stating: “Where is an assasin (sic) when you need one?”

The post has since been taken down and the Moms With Guns Facebook account has been closed by founder Kathy Perkins, but not before Liberaland was able to save a screen capture, seen below.

One commenter, Todd Thozeski of Seven Hills, Ohio, commented on her Facebook share, “Duh,’ while Liberaland noted another wrote, “I know…I’m amazed it hasn’t happened yet.”

Perkin’s Moms With Guns website and her twitter account, @MomsWithGuns , are still up, but contain no reference to her wishing for the assassination of the President of the United States.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/07/12/moms-with-guns-founder-shares-obama-pic-on-facebook-adds-where-is-assassin-when-you-need-one/

Democrats are now losing the immigration debate because the Washington Post said so.

Until now, the politics of immigration have been seen as a no-lose proposition for President Obama and the Democrats. If they could get a comprehensive overhaul passed, they would win. And if Republicans blocked it, the GOP would further alienate crucial Hispanic and moderate voters.

But with the current crisis on the Southwest border, where authorities have apprehended tens of thousands of unaccompanied Central American children since October, that calculus may be shifting.

Republicans and even some Democrats have accused Obama of being insufficiently engaged in a calamity that many say he should have seen coming.

And the president’s own party is deeply divided over what must be done now — particularly on the sensitive question of deporting children who have traveled thousands of miles and turned themselves in to U.S. authorities to escape from the desperate
situations they faced in countries such as Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/border-crisis-scrambling-the-politics-of-immigration-policy/2014/07/12/78b6ab16-0920-11e4-8a6a-19355c7e870a_story.html?hpid=z1
Go to Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 201 Next »