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OKNancy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:24 PM
Original message
Clark - "Schools are not a business"
Edited on Thu Oct-02-03 10:15 AM by Skinner
in the Josh Marshall interview I was especially happy to see this section. This very topic was discussed on DU recently. Several teachers commented and I learned a lot from those comments about how one can't compare schools to businesses. I think Wes Clark read the same book the DUers wer talking about.

Here are his comments:


" I think most Americans understand and appreciate it. For some reason, this administration can't. This administration has crafted an ideology that basically is designed to roll back the institutions that have helped this country. They promote the ideology through sloganeering, through labeling, name-calling, talk radio. But when you really get down and scratch it, there's not much there.

For example, take the idea of competition in schools. OK now, what is competition in schools? What does it really mean? Well, competition in business means you have somebody who's in a business that has a profit motive in it. It's measured every quarter. If the business doesn't keep up, the business is going to lose revenue, therefore it has an incentive to restructure, reorganize, re-plan, re-compete and stay in business.

Schools aren't businesses. Schools are institutions of public service. Their job--their product--is not measured in terms of revenues gained. It's measured in terms of young lives whose potential can be realized. And you don't measure that either in terms of popularity of the school, or in terms of the standardized test scores in the school. You measure it child-by-child, in the interaction of the child with the teacher, the parent with the teacher, and the child in a larger environment later on in life.

So when people say that competition is-this is sort of sloganeering, "Hey, you know, schools need this competition." No. I've challenged people: Tell me why it is that competition would improve a school. Most of them can't explain it. It's just like, "Well, competition improves everything so therefore it must improve schools."

EDITED BY ADMIN: COPYRIGHT
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flamingyouth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:28 PM
Response to Original message
1. It's great that he said that
It infuriates me when I hear the argument that "if we force public schools to compete with private schools, the public ones will become better."

Of course, I think the destruction of the public schools has been a long-term repuke goal. Nothing like a stupid electorate to help keep them in power.

I think this is my favorite quote of his from what you copied above: "Schools are institutions of public service. Their job--their product--is not measured in terms of revenues gained."
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Bucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:09 PM
Response to Reply #1
26. Clarity of insight
Precisely. It's this clarity of insight and understanding of fundamentals that makes him so damn different than other pols. He's a politician, alright. But he's a great politician. If we can get this man into the White House, I'm positive he'll end up on a dollar bill some day.
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XanaDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:28 PM
Response to Original message
2. Schools are not businesses, nor are libraries or universities...
This run-everything-like-a-business business has gone too far.
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MoonRiver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:29 PM
Response to Original message
3. Great minds think alike.
Maybe cause they read the same books! :grouphug: :kick:
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ulysses Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:29 PM
Response to Original message
4. and it's things like this
that make me very, very happy, annoyed as I get with Clark over other things. Got a link by any chance?

Thanks, Nancy.
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bicentennial_baby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Here you go!
A great interview, imho.

http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com /

Just scroll down to the 2nd story, that's the interview.
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ulysses Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:37 PM
Response to Reply #5
10. thanks
We'll see how things shake out. There are still a lot of unanswered, and very valid, questions about Clark, but this looms large for me.
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OKNancy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:49 PM
Response to Reply #10
17. I love an open mind
My impression of Clark, and I said it in another thread, is that he is an idealist. He really believes in "ask not what your country can do for you...", and all those sometimes-labled-as-cornball American values that people of his and my generation grew up with.

I do understand your reservations. I hope people will just give him a listen.
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ulysses Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:55 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Idealist? Idealists can't win in America! What are you, a Green?
;-)

I have to give it to the guy - that interview material is the best description and defense of public education that I've seen from a politician, I think, in my lifetime. If he means it, it puts very real and very meaty distance between him and the DLC claptrap.

(As an aside, I don't think I've ever asked where you are in OK. I grew up in Claremore...)
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OKNancy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:59 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Just down the road
Edited on Wed Oct-01-03 05:01 PM by OKNancy
I'm in Tulsa, since 1977.
I was born in Norman, but I've lived in Sayre, Enid, Sulphur, Del City, Moore...my dad was a Social Worker so we moved a lot, then he was an airplane mechanic and went to night school and became lawyer.

I love Claremore.

On edit: I have a lot of green sympathies, but I am practical and pragmatic and of course I live in Oklahoma!
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ulysses Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:07 PM
Response to Reply #20
24. half of my family lives
in Tulsa. We'll be home for Christmas - if y'all ever get an OK gathering together, let me know!

and hey - I live in Georgia! One can maintain one's ideals behind enemy lines. :)
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Zuni Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #17
38. That is what I like about Wes Clark
I think he is a genuine patriot, unlike chickenhawk Bush and the VP who swears loyalty to Halliburton.
But Clark has a way of making a point that totally agrees with my thought process.
This is a case in point. I do not think public services should be privatized--they are public services for a reason (like everyone needs them).
He seems to think like me--analyzing every issue in his mind and seeing things in more than one way.
I like that--I do not like ideologues who are beholden to one particular idea--even if many of their ideas are good--because I see it is a handicap.
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kwolf68 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:33 PM
Response to Original message
6. Clark is getting it done

While people are talking about whether or not Clark is a fraud or not, he comes out with poignant comments about solidly progressive issues.

He has a solid understanding and the fact he has changed his mind going from Rep to Dem is probably a testament to his intellect.

I believe as Clark defines his stands, gets into the issues more and more he will become an even bigger force. I like the way Dean is playing in the front-runner and I think Dean has been good of late, but Clark is good too.

I think we have us several good candidates that could do a fine job and General Clark is one of them.

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Starpass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
7. Gen. Clark,, you just put the teachers, administrators and members
of local school boards into your back pocket. They are patently sick of this ignorant view coming from this administration. What would Bush know about education----his was bought and paid for and was not a reflection of his low achieving, coke snorting brain, and it shows. Yale and Harvard should be ashamed.
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StephNW4Clark Donating Member (547 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. On behalf of Harvard
trust me, we are ashamed (but that was the Business School, and they're known for being both smart and crafty).

And as for Yale, I think about half the professors and students walked out in protest when Bush spoke there at commencement.
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DemCam Donating Member (911 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:37 PM
Response to Original message
9. About time someone said this.
Edited on Wed Oct-01-03 04:37 PM by DemCam
After having to endure all the bushit about running government like a business...privatization of government services...etc. ad nauseum...this is the first time someone has created a soundbyte to counter these arguments.

I don't know if he just talks that way or if he's memorized talking points. It didn't sound like it to me.

Trying Not to Fall in Love....yet.
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StephNW4Clark Donating Member (547 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:42 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. FYI
One of Clark's so-called problems is that he doesn't talk in soundbites. If you read interviews where they print both the question and answer in full, he always presents the argument, comes up with the counter-argument, points out why the counter-argument is false, and then returns to the original argument. I think you can see this in this interview (which I hope you check out).

I'm not going to try and convert you and say he's the most electable, or he's in the military so that means more in terms of public perception. But I hope you get the chance to read more of his interviews. It's there (and not the 4 paragraph cut-and-paste journalism we've seen of late) that you begin to see why Clark resonates with his supporters.
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Bertrand Donating Member (764 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:44 PM
Response to Reply #9
16. Great Point
this is the first time someone has created a soundbyte to counter these arguments.

I dont know if it's the first, but it's a good one that could be repeated over and over into the collective memory of the country.
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Bucky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #9
28. don't fall in love
I'm feeling seduced by his vision as well. He's saying things exactly how I've needed to hear them said. He's right and he makes it so clear why THEY are wrong.

Morpheus: he is the One

Trinity (to Morpheus): You can't be sure he is the One

Keanu: Whoa, dude
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DemCam Donating Member (911 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 07:33 PM
Response to Reply #28
40. Seduced...........his vision........
See...it works on you, doesn't it.

LOL
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HFishbine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:40 PM
Response to Original message
11. Damn that Clark
He's just going to yank me all around throughout this campaign, isn't he?

This is good. Very good. Would like to send it to about five teacher relatives. Got a link?
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StephNW4Clark Donating Member (547 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:43 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. www.talkingpointsmemo.com
You have to scroll down through the new post before you get to the interview. Apparently, there's going to be a PDF version posted soon.
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bicentennial_baby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:44 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. Here you go!
http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com /

Scroll down a bit, the interview's the 2nd story on the page.
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KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:41 PM
Response to Original message
12. Clark Needs To Talk About His Record More
From what I gather, he and his wife were very actively involved in getting Day Care and Educational Facilities set up on bases for the men and women under his command.
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Upfront Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 04:59 PM
Response to Original message
19. Excellent Statement
by General Clark. Must give credit where credit is due.
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izzie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
21. Somethings should be a service and not for profit.
School, mail, water, roads, and I am thinking lights maybe.Also graveyards. Some of these are being bought by a corp out of texas I read.
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Richardo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:11 PM
Response to Reply #21
27. ...and prisons. Major problems there.
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LeftistGorilla Donating Member (583 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
22. Someone should tell...
Coca-Cola and Pepsi...
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robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:04 PM
Response to Original message
23. It was one of my facorite parts of the interview - sent it
to all teachers I know. Beautifully put! Thanks for posting it!
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Richardo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
25. Allelujia!! Government is NOT a business!! I've been saying that for years
Edited on Wed Oct-01-03 05:13 PM by Richardo
GOPs who say governments should be run like businesses do not know what they are talking about. All you have to do is ask: "Why?".

You usually get that Golden Retriever tilt of the head, and no sensible answer ("uh-competiton?"). What they often mean is that governments should stick to a budget. Guess what RoveCo thinks of THAT?

Thank you, General. :thumbsup:
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DemExpat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:15 PM
Response to Original message
29. Oh, this is what we WANT to hear!!!!
Finally, a voice that says things that we want to hear, and America NEEDS to hear....

:kick:
DemEx
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catforclark2004 Donating Member (208 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:29 PM
Response to Reply #29
31. It's alway hearing it from the candidate than from the mediawhores!
Clark is tha man! We need a General in tha hhhhhoooooouuuuuusssssseee, the White House that is!

Was just listening to Right wing radio talk and the creep was calling Clark a looney...They hate his guts!

He was talking about science and going faster than the speed of light.....kinda like what Hawkins said...and since right wing nuts can't keep up with something like that, they just made something up, ...and now they are starting to call him "Spark"....

Those devils.

Thank goodness Clark said that the FCC needs to roll back to 1987....Sayd that Rush is full of Shit...and that ABC needs to fire his ass. Well said, General Clark....Hope ABC obeys your command.

Those who experience WAR work for PEACE

Support our Troups, ELECT ONE!
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WhoCountsTheVotes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:24 PM
Response to Original message
30. Read closely, Clark just taught voters how to break down GOP propaganda
"For example, take the idea of competition in schools. OK now, what is competition in schools? What does it really mean? "

"Well, competition in business means you have somebody who's in a business that has a profit motive in it. ... Schools aren't businesses. Schools are institutions of public service."

"So when people say that competition is-this is sort of sloganeering, "Hey, you know, schools need this competition." No. I've challenged people: Tell me why it is that competition would improve a school. Most of them can't explain it. "

Of course we at DU don't need this lesson :), but if Clark can do this off the cuff on television and not come across too wordy it would be amazing.

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bicentennial_baby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:48 PM
Response to Original message
32. Kick
:kick:
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Nay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 05:57 PM
Response to Original message
33. Just reading something logical like this makes me weep with joy.
Go, Clark! I feel like I have been in a mental wasteland and along comes such a beautiful, succinct statement like this one. Yes, we need to challenge all those RW puke "ideals" and destroy them utterly. To watch most other Dems tiptoe around RW ideals and treat them as if they had any merit makes me want to howl, tear at my hair, and throw ashes on myself.

Clark, show these morons how to think! Drag them to the brink!
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DemExpat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 06:07 PM
Response to Reply #33
34. This gets me pretty emotional too, Nay.....
So excited on the one hand, but fearful for Clark's safety on the other.... :-(

DemEx
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OKNancy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 06:08 PM
Response to Reply #33
35. and just think, it was done
as an oral interview, in a car from the airport to the Capital.
You can tell he's thought about this.
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OKNancy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 06:35 PM
Response to Original message
36. Never kicked my own thread
but, then again I don't start threads very often.
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Zuni Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 06:38 PM
Response to Original message
37. I agree fully
this whole 'school choice' is a trojan horse that the GOP has to privatize schools.
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Bread and Circus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-01-03 07:03 PM
Response to Original message
39. Right on Wes!
I love how he can turn things around and put it
in such simple terms. He gives an excellent long explanation
and then wham, delivers a nice soundbyte as well.

I can't wait to see his policy package.
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