ChrisWeigant.com

Netroots Musings

[ Posted Tuesday, June 12th, 2012 – 18:09 PDT ]

So, anything happen while I was away? Well, we'll get to all of that in due time, but today I'm going to indulge in some random reactions from the Netroots Nation conference instead. If this sort of thing does not interest you, then I guess you should check back tomorrow.

These are in no particular order, and are merely snippets of observation without deeper meaning, so please read them with that in mind.

First up, Providence, Rhode Island rocks. Great little city, and they did everything they could to roll out the red carpet for us. The mayor showed up and personally invited us to contact him if anything in our experience was lacking, which was a nice touch. Providence even held a "waterfire" for us, which was pretty special.

Part of the reason Providence was so nice was that we were the only political convention in town. Unlike the last two years, the conservative blogging convention did not hold their confab simultaneously with ours, so we pretty much besieged the city without competition.

I met lots of people (as usual) who I'm used to knowing only through email -- which is really the whole point of going to a convention like this in the first place. Readers will be interested to hear that the most enjoyable of these was meeting up with David Akadjian, whom we all know and love here. It was his first Netroots, and he seemed to be having a great time. But we did miss Matt Osborne, who didn't seem to be there this year.

I wore a Baltimore Orioles cap for most of the time, even though we were deep in Red Sox Nation, but among the disgruntled comments I did manage to find a few other fans of the O's. Even with the Red Sox fans, we all agreed on the basic proposition that anyone is better than the Yankees, so there were no hard feelings.

Speaking of Red Sox, "Occupy Providence" took up residence across the street from our convention center, and their big issue was with the state of Rhode Island bailing out Curt Schilling's failed video games company, 38 Studios, to the tune of $116 million. Nothing like a little crony capitalism for ex-sports stars, eh?

Right before the convention started, we got a chance to see part of the transit of Venus across the sun, when the clouds cleared for the crucial 45 minutes, while up in Maine. Most of the rest of our stay in Maine was cloudy and rainy, so this was a minor miracle.

One high point was getting randomly interviewed by a Reuters reporter, and subsequently quoted in his article. Perhaps I should expand the soundbite he printed into more of the discussion I had with him in a future article some time soon. And the good folks at Reuters finally did get my name spelled right up on their site.

Saw plenty of politicians, including at least a half-dozen senators, and that doesn't even count those just running for office, such as Elizabeth Warren. Rhode Island's own Senator Sheldon Whitehouse seemed to be everywhere at the conference, and is definitely a politician you can sit down and have a beer with. Some politicians come to the conference to schmooze, some to deliver a speech and leave, but Whitehouse took the time to walk around and meet-and-greet pretty much everyone, which was nice to see. Senator Sherrod Brown also put in an appearance or two, and was wished well by everyone (Whitehouse and Brown are both up for re-election, but while Whitehouse is expected to crush his opponent Brown is in a very tight race that conservatives are pouring boatloads of money into). Brown is another true man-of-the-people, and really deserves re-election.

Personal plea: Whoever took an iPhone photo of my wife and I raising a toast with Senator Whitehouse and Providence Mayor Angel Taveras at the outdoor party, please don't forget to email us a copy!

Met plenty of other bloggers, from a whole plethora of sites, including a few from Huffington Post that I've never met in person, which is always fun. When wandering the hallways, you spend most of your time staring at everyone's bellybutton, in an attempt to read their nametag so you can figure out who they are. I suppose all conventions must be like this, but seeing as how this is the only one I've ever attended, it was (as always) a little strange to meet people this way.

Which brings up another point -- I never know what to say to the folks who recognize me! It seemed there were more people this year who recognized my name than the past two years, so perhaps my visibility is rising, who knows? But again, when someone says to me "I read your stuff," I never know what to answer back because everything either sounds egotistical or full of false modesty, so I'm usually pretty tongue-tied when it happens. If you're reading this and you bumped into me and said you read my work, to which I mumbled and made random squeaking noises, then you now know why.

It did impress me that one candidate for the House who was there schmoozing all the friendly press told me she read my columns. So if you live in the 8th district of Pennsylvania (the suburbs around Philadelphia, I believe), I heartily encourage you all to vote for Kathy Boockvar for Congress, as just on general principles I believe this country would be in a much better place if we can get more folks into Congress who, at the very least, read my Friday columns every week. Heh.

See what I mean? When I do try, it just comes out all ego-ey.

The best session I attended was called "COINTELPRO 2.0" on America's rapidly-increasing surveillance state. It was truly chilling. More on this in future columns, I'm sure.

I'll also be writing about tax issues in the near future, as we're gearing up for another deadline (and another cliff-hanger of a fight in Congress) right after the elections.

I guess that's about it. Now you can see why I don't "liveblog" these things. There's just too much happening to "take notes" while it's happening. I'll be back to work tomorrow with a real column, and apologize for the interlude here.

Next year's Netroots Nation will be in San Jose, California, which means that we will not have to pay any airfare to get there. Woo hoo!

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

65 Comments on “Netroots Musings”

  1. [1] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow!!! Sounds like ya had quite the blast, CW!! :D

    And ya got to meet David!!!?? I am jealous...

    So, when is NRN coming to Florida?? Wouldn't THAT be a hoot, eh??

    So, anything happen while I was away?

    Yea, I was my normal obnoxious self.. :D There was so much stuff coming out that really is dinging Obama, it was hard to resist.. As evidenced by the fact that I couldn't.. :D

    The best session I attended was called "COINTELPRO 2.0" on America's rapidly-increasing surveillance state. It was truly chilling. More on this in future columns, I'm sure.

    Now, THIS sounds like something I would have loved to be at... I would have loved to have compared what was discussed with my own personal experiences in the field...

    Did they have any troops from the field??

    Was it all discussions on theory rather than rubber meets the road information??

    Did ANYONE decry (or even COMMENT on) Obama's rapid expansion of Domestic Surveillance programs..

    Did you, just ONCE, think to yourself, 'Too bad Michale isn't here to see this'... :D

    Anyways, do tell. I wanna hear all about it.. :D

    Michale.....

  2. [2] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale -

    Actually, they not only decried the expansion of domestic surveillance, they also decried the fact that Netroots wasn't making such issues a priority. But they also decried the treatment of Muslims in America, so it's hard to tell whether you would have enjoyed it or not. There was much factual information, though. Try this site on for size:

    http://www.bordc.org

    They weren't the only ones presenting, but it's a start.

    -CW

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    Actually, they not only decried the expansion of domestic surveillance, they also decried the fact that Netroots wasn't making such issues a priority.

    Ahhhhhh There IS some semblance of logic in the world!! :D

    But they also decried the treatment of Muslims in America, so it's hard to tell whether you would have enjoyed it or not.

    Did they decry the treatment of Mormons as well?? I guess that will be a different debate.. :D

    http://www.bordc.org

    They weren't the only ones presenting, but it's a start.

    Danke.. I am feasting upon it as we speak.. :D

    Michale.....

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.bordc.org

    They weren't the only ones presenting, but it's a start.

    Well, I have to admit.. I am disappointed...

    If any organization is not going to take an administration to task, REGARDLESS of whether or not it's a GOP or a DEM administration, then that organization has very little credibility..

    Take Glen Greenwald for example... He is an insufferable prick and, 99.9% of the time he is dead wrong on just about everything...

    BUT....

    But I respect his opinion because it doesn't change when an administration changes... He castigates and slams Obama as much as he castigated and slammed Bush...

    Like I say.. He is wrong about just about everything..

    But at least he is consistent..

    THAT is honorable and worthy of respect..

    Michale.....

  5. [5] 
    akadjian wrote:

    So, when is NRN coming to Florida?? Wouldn't THAT be a hoot, eh?

    Alas, Michale, we raised a glass to you in your absence ... maybe someday we'll all get to have that Weigantian beer together. As Chris mentioned, perhaps next year in San Jose.

    Not only was it a lot of fun to meet Chris in person but I also got to meet his charming wife. Compared to this, I gave the session with Krugman a 4/10 :)

    Did you, just ONCE, think to yourself, 'Too bad Michale isn't here to see this'... :D

    Heheh. I wish you'd of been there for the session on Sports featuring Dave Zirin from ESPN's Outside the Lines. They discussed the influence of sports figures on history and the current lack of outspoken progressive sports stars in professional sports.

    The other piece I think you might have found interesting was there was a session on how to bring manufacturing back to America. Lots of good ideas. One thing I had never heard before here was some of the national security concerns involved with the loss of American manufacturing. Such as the fear of "kill switches" in microchips. I had to look this up but here's an article from IEEE (not a right or left org but the Institute for Electrical Engineers (and some other 'E' I forget):

    http://spectrum.ieee.org/semiconductors/design/the-hunt-for-the-kill-switch

    Hard to tell how big a fear this is, but it was interesting nonetheless. Anyways, do you know the way to San Jose? :)

    -David

  6. [6] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    on the topic of traveling around and meeting folks, I'm typing on my cell phone from a seat on the amtrak auto train. My auto and I will be roaming the NY, Philly and possibly boston area for a month and probably taking the same train back to the orlando area mid july, before driving back south to miami. In the spirit of this blog post, I am more than willing to make a slight detour to grab a beer with any CW regular.

    ~joshua

  7. [7] 
    jerrywaxman wrote:

    Hi, Chris!
    It was great finally meeting you and Fiona in Providence. I too had a ball and fell in love with the city.

    Michale, I actually spoke to Markos about bringing NRN to Orlando. Disney has several resort hotels that could hold the entire convention self-contained, and they are a union house. Hopefully, he'll get to work on it.

  8. [8] 
    Osborne Ink wrote:

    I am so sorry I couldn't be there, Chris, but my life has been in upheaval of late. I'll call you this weekend.

  9. [9] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    akadjian -

    From my Hallowe'en horror story of 2007:

    "But that is not the worst of it, not by a long shot," she continued. "You may not be aware of it, but every so often some well-meaning member of your Congress introduces a bill to mandate that American military equipment -- fighter jets, naval vessels, missiles; all the high-tech weaponry in your arsenal, in other words -- be made entirely in America, with parts made entirely in America. These Congressmen are well-meaning, but they are foolish. You can mandate that a fighter jet is 100% 'made in America' but all you will be doing is guaranteeing that you will not build any more fighter jets. Because the basic building blocks of your electronic warfare machines -- transistors, chips, relays and all the rest of it -- simply are not made in America any more. Where are they made? For the most part, across the Pacific."

    Sounds similar. I'll read the article...

    -CW

  10. [10] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    nypoet22 -

    We should have coordinated our schedules! Providence is not far from Boston... we took the train both ways...

    :-)

    -CW

  11. [11] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    jerrywaxman -

    It was good to meet you, too! I met so many people I've only ever emailed at Netroots, and I apologize for not mentioning your name as well, here.

    Last year, at the Markos party at the end, we shared a table for a while with the woman who books the NRN conference. We asked her why not San Francisco, and her response was it was simply too expensive -- she couldn't get hotel room deals for less than $200 a night, which would put it out of reach for many bloggers and other attendees. So we were pleasantly surprised when they announced San Jose. Don't know what the room rates are in Orlando, but it does seem like a good location -- the keys (according to her) are: easy access to airport, big enough hotel and conv. center to hold us, and affordability.

    For the past two years, there were hints -- senators showing up who weren't from the current state (Franken in Vegas, Whitehouse in Minneapolis). This time, though, neither Boxer nor DiFi made an appearance, so I guess it's not the best rule of thumb.

    -CW

  12. [12] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Matt -

    You were missed at NRN, by both me and my wife. Your smiling face has been a constant at these things for us, and NRN surely would have felt diminshed if we hadn't met up with a few other commenters here. But the blowout PCCC party didn't even happen this year, so I guess it was a good year to miss. I let the PCCC know how disappointed I was that they weren't throwing a wingding, so maybe they'll get on it next year (hopefully).

    Looking forward to hearing from you!

    -CW

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    Alas, Michale, we raised a glass to you in your absence ... maybe someday we'll all get to have that Weigantian beer together. As Chris mentioned, perhaps next year in San Jose.

    My lovely wife has forgone teaching in favor of being a cubicle computer geek.. So her vacation schedule is not as liberal as it used to be.

    But we'll see what the future brings.

    Such as the fear of "kill switches" in microchips. I had to look this up but here's an article from IEEE (not a right or left org but the Institute for Electrical Engineers (and some other 'E' I forget):

    That is, indeed, a very real concern..

    It's insane to buy components for our military systems from people that we might USE those systems against in the future..

    It makes even less sense as our military becomes more and more hi-tech..

    Anyways, do you know the way to San Jose? :)

    Now THAT was FUNNY! :D

    Joshua,

    My auto and I will be roaming the NY, Philly and possibly boston area for a month and probably taking the same train back to the orlando area mid july, before driving back south to miami.

    You're taking your CAR!!!?? To New York!!!??? That's brave... :D

    "You came in that?? Your braver than I thought."
    -Princess Leia, STAR WARS Episode IV

    :D

    Jerry,

    Michale, I actually spoke to Markos about bringing NRN to Orlando. Disney has several resort hotels that could hold the entire convention self-contained, and they are a union house. Hopefully, he'll get to work on it.

    Hi Jerry.. Welcome to our (little 'p') party! :D

    Might I suggest a looksie at St Augustine, FL?? Nations oldest city. We have Ponte Vedra with Sawgrass Convention facilities and World Golf Village...

    http://www.floridashistoriccoast.com/

    Might be less expensive. Also, would be a fascinating marketing in contrasts. The nation's newest at the nation's oldest...

    Just a thought. :D

    Michale.....

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    The best line from that article...

    ”The economy is globalized, but defense is not globalized. How do you reconcile the two?”

    That's what's going to keep military leaders up at night...

    Michale.....

  15. [15] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Hey joshua-
    There also was a tremendous panel on education ... much of which has echoed your commentary.

    Here's a bit of ammunition ...

    1. dianeravitch.net
    2. check out "teacherken" on dKos, not only does he know the education debate inside and out, he's also the #1 blogger on dKos
    3. How we compare on international tests ... In low poverty schools, we lead the world. The problem is not our educational system, it's poverty. Many charter schools are able to "fix" this problem by simply admitting only the well off.
    4. Unions- If unions are the problem, why aren't schools in the South better? They're not. In fact, the union schools fill the upper ranks. Like Massachusetts, NY.
    5. Remind people that charter schools are "corporate schools"; there's a huge profit to be made here.

    More later ...
    -David

    p.s. Let me know if you're anywhere near southern Ohio or the Adirondacks in mid August (we're headed up there on vacation the week of Aug 13th - akadjian@yahoo.com)

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    4. Unions- If unions are the problem, why aren't schools in the South better? They're not. In fact, the union schools fill the upper ranks. Like Massachusetts, NY.

    Since I am the largest advocate of "The Unions Are The Problem" position, let me clarify.. I don't believe that Unions are THE problem. They are part and parcel to the overall problem insofar as they (generally speaking) use students as hostages or bargaining chips.

    Think about it. Whenever there is Union action, who suffers the most??

    The students. No where was this more apparent than during the Wisconsin debacle.

    So, while Unions are the sole problem, they are a symptom of the overall problem.

    The "US vs THEM" attitude..

    And, apropos of absolutely nothing.. Under the "Now THAT'S What I Am Talking About!!!" heading...

    Just what America needs: Pizza vending machines
    http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-pizza-vending-machines-20120613,0,4694433.story

    How kewl is THAT!!! :D

    Michale....

  17. [17] 
    akadjian wrote:

    So, while Unions are the sole problem, they are a symptom of the overall problem.

    Whether you realize it or not, you have just done an amazing job of pointing out a huge logical flaw in conservative thinking ...

    1. Conservatives believe that everyone in the marketplace has the right to be "selfish"
    2. Let me repeat, they believe that for a functioning economy, people have to behave in their own best interests
    3. Then they turn around and say, except people trying to improve their own standing. They can't be selfish.

    This is actually absolutely brilliant because it shows you what conservative philosophy is really about.

    We ... those who own ... can be selfish. Those who work for us, should shut the f*ck up and get back to work

    Oh, and for less pay ... and less benefits ... and more hours.

    Now I honestly don't think this is you, Michale. I don't think you're fighting this same fight. You actually believe in our country and are coming at this from a different angle. But this is what many conservatives believe.

    If you don't believe me, how come they argue for selfishness when it benefits corporations, and yet are opposed to actual PEOPLE working together to improve their lot?

    -David

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    2. Let me repeat, they believe that for a functioning economy, people have to behave in their own best interests

    That is not necessarily just a problem of the Right..

    How many times have you heard Leftist groups shake their head and grumble, "People are voting against their best interests.."

    So, apparently, the Left thinks highly of one's own interests..

    We ... those who own ... can be selfish. Those who work for us, should shut the f*ck up and get back to work

    While I would likely phrase it a little more diplomatically, there is some logic to such a position...

    If those who work for others don't like it, then they need to become one of those who people work for...

    ANYONE has that opportunity.. I bounced around from one menial job to another, living paycheck to paycheck. Then I got an idea, ran with it and started a company that made 3.8 mil it's first year. I had a dozen people working FOR me...

    Then the floor dropped out and I was back to working for others, living paycheck to paycheck.. I pulled myself up and now own a small business that generates me an upper middle class income and we always have money in the bank for emergencies or to take a cruise or whatever.....

    If I can do it, ANYONE can do it.. And I did it! TWICE!!!

    The Left seems to believe that people are entitled to other people's success simply by virtue of existing.....

    THAT attitude did NOT make this country great.

    The attitude that one works for their success is what made this country great..

    If someone doesn't like their lot in life and wants a better/higher standing??? Then they need to get off their asses and MAKE it happen!!

    yet are opposed to actual PEOPLE working together to improve their lot?

    Nothing about the Right and their ideology opposes people actually WORKING to improve their lot..

    What many on the Right *AND* in the Middle oppose is rewarding sloth and laziness. Allowing people to improve their lot in life, simply because they exist AND at the expense of those who DID create something out of nothing......

    And THAT is what many programs that the Left pushes are all about...

    Michale.....

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    Don't get me wrong.. I am not suggesting that we let people starve...

    But seriously.. TWO YEARS of free money???

    Where is the incentive to work if the Government will pay you to just sit around, play with the kids and indulge in hobbies???

    Michale......

  20. [20] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Oh, wow, you met David???? That must've been so much fun.

    So what were the strategies coming out of Netroots? Spill. What are ya gonna do about O and his whacky campaign team? All you Netroots writers ought to appoint a Thomas Jefferson to write an open "now hear this" letter to O, with everyone's John Hancock on it. Throw a little fear of God into the man.

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    What are ya gonna do about O and his whacky campaign team?

    Speaking of "whacky"...

    Did you see the report of the White House response to SecCommerce???

    http://blog.heritage.org/2012/06/12/the-bizarre-white-house-reaction-to-john-bryson-news/

    Ya gotta wonder what the Left's reaction would have been if this had been the Bush administration.... :D

    Michale.....

  22. [22] 
    akadjian wrote:

    And THAT is what many programs that the Left pushes are all about.

    Huh? I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about, Michale.

    So what were the strategies coming out of Netroots?

    Heh. I think the conference is a little different than what you might think, Chris. At least I didn't attend any campaign strategy sessions. It's more a chance for folks to meet each other and then to hear some speakers and panelists talking about a range of different progressive subjects.

    The one exception is our liberal media sessions, where we sit down and determine everything that's going to be in the "liberal" media. Muahahahahahah

    -David

  23. [23] 
    akadjian wrote:

    The Left seems to believe that people are entitled to other people's success simply by virtue of existing.....

    THAT attitude did NOT make this country great.

    The attitude that one works for their success is what made this country great.

    I'd have to disagree. None of these things made our country great.

    It's always interested though how you define both sides of the argument. You say what you believe and then you say what the "Left" believes. Only no one, not even the "Left," ever seems to actually believe what you say.

    What made our country great was that enough resources were available to everyone who initially settled here. The government gave land away for free. Socialism!!!! There were plenty of opportunities. And everyone who wanted to work, pretty much could. This grew the middle class and distributed the wealth of the country across the entire population.

    This is what made our country great.

    Now we have a system which funnels all the wealth up to a few people at the very top. Despite the fact that many of them never worked a day in their lives because they inherited their fortunes. These same people then turn around and point the finger at the poor saying "Lazy!" so that the average person doesn't stop and think ... is it really the poor who are effing up our country?

    Was it the poor who required a $700 billion bailout? Is it the poor who are outsourcing jobs to other countries?

    This is what is making our country ... ummm ... not so great.

    -David

  24. [24] 
    Michale wrote:

    Huh? I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about, Michale.

    Google Democrat Liberal Welfare Programs...

    Heh. I think the conference is a little different than what you might think, Chris. At least I didn't attend any campaign strategy sessions. It's more a chance for folks to meet each other and then to hear some speakers and panelists talking about a range of different progressive subjects.

    So, no plans are made on how to influence voters and candidates???

    The one exception is our liberal media sessions, where we sit down and determine everything that's going to be in the "liberal" media. Muahahahahahah

    http://tinyurl.com/3xut927

    :D

    It's always interested though how you define both sides of the argument. You say what you believe and then you say what the "Left" believes. Only no one, not even the "Left," ever seems to actually believe what you say.

    For example?? :D

    Everything I have said the Left believes has substantiation in reality...

    Now, I'll concede that it may be over-generalizing to encompass ALL of the entire Left.. I am sure that there are some Lefties out there who don't believe what the majority of Lefties believe..

    But everything I have attributed to "The Left" is supported by multiple examples...

    Now we have a system which funnels all the wealth up to a few people at the very top. Despite the fact that many of them never worked a day in their lives because they inherited their fortunes. These same people then turn around and point the finger at the poor saying "Lazy!" so that the average person doesn't stop and think ... is it really the poor who are effing up our country?

    And yet, some knuckle dragging grunt who's only skills include killing people and setting up surveillance can start with less than nothing and build a company that makes almost 4 million dollars it's first year... And then get knocked back down and rise UP again to start a successful small business that makes a VERY decent living...

    And yet, we have a smart guy who starts out in a garage and builds a company that becomes the largest and most successful company IN THE WORLD..

    Now, tell me..

    Does that sound like the kind of country that you are describing??

    NO ONE.. Absolutely NO ONE can hold someone back if they are determined to succeed...

    Sure, it's not easy.. Nothing worthwhile is EVER easy...

    But to say that it's impossible for people to pull themselves up and be a success is simply giving people excuses for not trying...

    People can find a thousand difference excuses for their lot in life.. But when all the BS is taken away, it's usually discovered that they are where they are because of their own mistakes and missteps...

    That's been my experience anyways...

    If *I* can make it in this world, ANYONE can...

    Michale.....

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    I know, I know... More "Obama Bashing"...

    But this article is very note-worthy....

    President Obama’s Speech Gets A Thumbs Down From Political Press Corps
    http://politicker.com/2012/06/president-obamas-speech-gets-a-thumbs-down-from-political-press-corps/

    What's note-worthy about it is that even MSNBC is slamming Obama's speech..

    Whooooaaaaaaaa...

    Michale....

  26. [26] 
    dsws wrote:

    when someone says to me "I read your stuff," I never know what to answer back

    How about, "Do you post in the comments section? I don't recognize your name, but do I know you by userID?"

  27. [27] 
    akadjian wrote:

    If *I* can make it in this world, ANYONE can.

    And congratulations to you ... sincerely. I've done similarly.

    In the conservative system of the future, however, people won't have the same opportunity you did.

    Just like young people today don't have the same opportunities that their parents did. Does this mean it's impossible? No. What it means is that it's less possible. And more people won't make it.

    More middle class people will become poor and more poor will become poorer. Like China, or India. Or other 3rd world countries.

    You don't need an enemy overseas to destroy America. The enemy is right here and doing a much better job.

    -David

  28. [28] 
    akadjian wrote:

    What's note-worthy about it is that even MSNBC is slamming Obama's speech.

    Whoa indeed ... are you finally noticing that there is no "liberal media"?

  29. [29] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Big missed opportunity, not to strategize when all those folks are together in one place.

  30. [30] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    1. dianeravitch.net
    2. check out "teacherken" on dKos, not only does he know the education debate inside and out, he's also the #1 blogger on dKos

    i've read ravitch extensively, and teacherken i've read a few articles. both very bright, both frequently right on the money. literally.

    3. How we compare on international tests ... In low poverty schools, we lead the world. The problem is not our educational system, it's poverty.

    that's factually accurate, but it's the wrong frame for the issue. saying that poverty is the problem makes it too easy to construct a straw-man, wherein opponents of "reform" (a.k.a defenders of the "status quo") are just whining and using poverty as an excuse for failing our nation's children.

    the correct frame is that we need to stop playing the blame game and do what's been repeatedly proven effective. the fact that the most effective reforms happen to ameliorate the effects of poverty is immaterial, they're what's proven to work.

    community services help parents develop the skills to be participants in their children's education

    free optional pre-k reduces the SES gap in pre-literacy and behavior problems

    a school's attention to nutrition and healthcare make sure kids' bodies are sufficiently healthy for their minds to be able to learn

    small classes make sure that students who need individual attention can get it.

    highly engaged leaders, promoted upward from within a school or a district (not transferred from the outside), replace a missing sense of trust and raise the performance of all teachers and students working under them.

    Many charter schools are able to "fix" this problem by simply admitting only the well off.

    it's much, much more complicated than that. as opposed to traditional public schools, charters have control over the number of students they must admit, the involvement of parents, the removal of students who don't conform behaviorally or don't perform academically, and a whole list of other ways to artificially create an advantage, yet they STILL tend not to perform any better on average. the actual percentages in the stanford CREDO study were 17% better, 46% the same, and 37% worse than comparable public schools.

    4. Unions- If unions are the problem, why aren't schools in the South better? They're not. In fact, the union schools fill the upper ranks. Like Massachusetts, NY.

    mass overgeneralization on both sides, and a red herring to boot. i know many of the same interests that claim to want to reform education are motivated by the desire to break unions - some for political reasons, some for economic reasons. but just like charter schools, the emphasis on how good or bad a union may be is just a giant distraction. some are good, some are not so good, but mainly they're just a convenient scapegoat. i'll beat the drum again, in order to start fixing we need to stop blaming.

    5. Remind people that charter schools are "corporate schools"; there's a huge profit to be made here.

    yes, many are financed by big corporations with an interest in drilling the proverbial oil wells in public education. however, just like unions, we must distinguish the membership from the leadership. charter teachers generally have even fewer rights than public school teachers, and they work very, very hard to try to get their kids to learn. even though many charters are poorly or dishonestly managed, the people working on the ground are generally no less praiseworthy than public school teachers, especially considering that many of the charter teachers go into the job unprepared and uncredentialed.

    ~joshua

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    In the conservative system of the future, however, people won't have the same opportunity you did.

    Your missing my point..

    Everyone has the same opportunity I did... No political Party in this country can deny anyone this..

    NO ONE, NO THING can deny any American this same opportunity.

    If a person is not succeeding, then they are doing something wrong. Making mistakes..

    Just like young people today don't have the same opportunities that their parents did. Does this mean it's impossible? No. What it means is that it's less possible. And more people won't make it.

    OK, now we're coming to a meeting of the minds..

    I would actually disagree with the first part and say that our children today have TONS more opportunity for success that I had. I have to go to my daughter or my son to learn how to use features of my smart phone.. :D

    But yes. Things are a bit harder for young people today. We agree on that. It's harder to succeed. As you say, it's not impossible, just less possible.

    In other words, it's less fair today then it was 30 years ago..

    But hay... Life ain't fair... If our kids have to work harder to be a success, then that will make our kids better people. And better Americans..

    Making it easy is not the way to build character.

    Making it easy is the way to destroy a country....

    That which does not kill us makes us stronger.

    More middle class people will become poor and more poor will become poorer. Like China, or India. Or other 3rd world countries.

    Perhaps. But the solution is not what Obama and the Democrats are doing. Making this country in Greece's image is NOT the solution..

    You don't need an enemy overseas to destroy America. The enemy is right here and doing a much better job.

    I would agree, but would not characterize Obama and the Democrats as "the enemy".. :D

    "Dangerously irresponsible!??? Oh com'on Arthur!! That sounds almost pleasant!! She's a fucking lunatic!!"
    -General Ira Potter, THE FINAL OPTION

    Seriously, though. It's the policies of the current Administration that has made things worse..

    This is simply undeniable.

    Will a Romney administration be better? Possibly...

    It likely can't do any more damage than has already been done...

    At least Romney has proven beyond ANY doubt that he can be successful and business and economics.. Hopefully he can bring on competent people to help him wear his foreign policy, national security and CnC hats...

    How about Obama for SecDef?? Or SecState?? :D

    Whoa indeed ... are you finally noticing that there is no "liberal media"?

    One instance does not a fair MSM make...

    The MSM is in the bag for Obama. The facts are too widespread and obvious to come to any other conclusion..

    If we continue to see things like the above, then of course, my opinion will change..

    I hope we do. It's good to have a FAIR and impartial MSM...

    It's also good to have a gold-covered crapper. But I doubt I'll be seeing THAT anytime soon either... :D

    Joshua,

    community services help parents develop the skills to be participants in their children's education

    free optional pre-k reduces the SES gap in pre-literacy and behavior problems

    a school's attention to nutrition and healthcare make sure kids' bodies are sufficiently healthy for their minds to be able to learn

    small classes make sure that students who need individual attention can get it.

    highly engaged leaders, promoted upward from within a school or a district (not transferred from the outside), replace a missing sense of trust and raise the performance of all teachers and students working under them.

    Excellent suggestions..

    These seem obvious. There has to be SOME reason why these are not implemented...

    Michale.....

  32. [32] 
    akadjian wrote:


    community services help parents develop the skills to be participants in their children's education

    free optional pre-k reduces the SES gap in pre-literacy and behavior problems

    a school's attention to nutrition and healthcare make sure kids' bodies are sufficiently healthy for their minds to be able to learn

    small classes make sure that students who need individual attention can get it.

    highly engaged leaders, promoted upward from within a school or a district (not transferred from the outside), replace a missing sense of trust and raise the performance of all teachers and students working under them.

    Well said ... you should have been on the panel!

    Will a Romney administration be better? Possibly...

    If you look at what Romney would do ... no.

    You don't want Greece? That's what Romney wants ... austerity.

    Things are a bit harder for young people today. We agree on that. It's harder to succeed. As you say, it's not impossible, just less possible.

    Remember, what made America great was opportunity ... that's why people came here to begin with. I believe you remember the phrase ... land of opportunity.

    Liberals believe in hard work just as much as you do. So why not put people to work doing things like fixing our highways and improving our high tech infrastructure?

    -David

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    dwsw,

    How about, "Do you post in the comments section? I don't recognize your name, but do I know you by userID?"

    Good one.. :D Maybe it would encourage more user participation. As much as I enjoy arguing and debating with ya'all, fresh meat is always welcome :D

    David,

    Well said ... you should have been on the panel!

    I could not possibly agree more... :D

    If you look at what Romney would do ... no.

    No one knows WHAT Romney will do.. Just as no one knew what Obama would do..

    But, at least with Romney, we have his past success to look at. Success even President Clinton has acknowledged..

    You notice that Democrats dropped the BAIN attacks on Romney?? That's because the "attacks" were making Romney look good in the eyes of Independents and NPAs..

    "Ya know the difference between you and me?? I make this look GOOOOD..."
    -Will Smith, MEN IN BLACK

    :D

    You don't want Greece? That's what Romney wants ... austerity.

    Greece doesn't HAVE austerity yet.. THAT is their problem..

    The problem with Greece is not austerity measures because the austerity measures haven't been implemented..

    The problem with Greece is that their people have become fat and lazy off the social welfare programs and, now that they are faced with the consequences of those programs, people are panicking...

    The US has a chance to pull back from the Greek Abyss.. But ONLY if the spending is brought under control..

    Obama and the Democrats have NO intention of doing that..

    THEIR idea is to spend more!!

    Even an economic dunce like me can see that THAT is the worst possible plan...

    Liberals believe in hard work just as much as you do.

    There is absolutely NO evidence to support this claim. At least, not with the liberals in the here and now...

    So why not put people to work doing things like fixing our highways and improving our high tech infrastructure?

    Who'se going to pay for it???

    How about this?? Those who are on welfare and unemployment are to be put to work, repairing the highways and infrastructure??

    See how well THAT would fly with the Left, eh??

    The Left goes apeshit just because states want to drug test welfare recipients..

    You KNOW that the Left would be screaming "SLAVE LABOR" if the governments forced welfare recipients to actually WORK for their money...

    Michale....

  34. [34] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Those who are on welfare and unemployment are to be put to work, repairing the highways and infrastructure?

    I think that's a great idea. I'd be happy to see more programs offered to put the unemployed to work. I don't want people on welfare either.

    They would create jobs, do some good for the country, and increase demand.

    I don't think you'd find as much opposition from the Left as you think.

    But the Right, to use your words, would and have gone "apeshit" :) at these ideas ... because they would be government programs

    The easiest evidence is the most recent blockage of Federal highway legislation by Republicans in Congress.

    There is absolutely NO evidence to support this claim.

    Puh-leez? Capital "NO"? ... That means zero. That means all I have to do is find one example of a hard-working liberal and you're wrong.

    Let's see ... a great example is Oprah Winfrey. Like her or hate her you can't deny that she build an institution from the ground up.

    Your argument is therefore false. That was easy ...

    No one knows WHAT Romney will do.

    So you're supporting a guy who you have absolutely no idea what he would do?

    Wow. That doesn't sound like a good strategy.

    Maybe you should ask a few more questions.

    If you listen to him and understand the conservative platform it's not too hard to understand what he would do.

    -David

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    But the Right, to use your words, would and have gone "apeshit" :) at these ideas ... because they would be government programs

    Yea, probably...

    But the people are already getting the money anyways... So, let's make it so they are doing something for it..

    I don't think the Right would oppose it, if it were framed in that manner...

    Puh-leez? Capital "NO"? ... That means zero. That means all I have to do is find one example of a hard-working liberal and you're wrong.

    Not at all.. Like the MSNBC example above, one instance does not a conclusion make.

    By and large, Liberals tend to NOT reward hard work. This is evidence by wanting to tax those who work the hardest and succeed and to expand the social programs for those who don't want to work at all..

    So you're supporting a guy who you have absolutely no idea what he would do?

    That's what all of us did with Obama..

    But I DO have an idea what Romney will do. Since he has shown a track record of succeeding at business and economics, it's logical to infer that he will continue that same success...

    If you listen to him and understand the conservative platform it's not too hard to understand what he would do.

    But it's all supposition and conjecture...

    Did Obama do what he said he would do? No, he didn't.. So you can bank that Romney will do everything he says he will do..

    The only concrete thing we have to go on is Romney's past...

    And it is undeniable that ROmney's past is pretty damn good...

    Michale.....

  36. [36] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Excellent suggestions..

    These seem obvious. There has to be SOME reason why these are not implemented...

    these things cost money, and they don't directly benefit anyone except students. we could afford them, but we'd have to save money on some of the unnecessary and expensive things that the money intended for the kids gets wasted on (which would upset some VERY powerful interests).

    1. reduce standardized achievement testing to once every 4 years - they aren't particularly useful to measure annual progress anyway. boo-hoo ETS/Pearson.

    2. consolidate districts into one per county. only one superintendent and school board, not twelve different ones catering to just their own little corner. and no administrative position making more than twice the compensation of the highest paid teacher. superintendents are currently politicians, not educators. as such, they're expendable.

    3. have independent auditing of district budgets. all that money goes somewhere. it needs to get tracked down and reclaimed for the students.

    4. accountability for every cent not spent in a classroom or on a child. {irony} let's say if a district can't show "adequate yearly progress" at making sure a larger percentage of the money goes to the kids and the classrooms, and ALL money within ten years, all the administrators get fired and the teachers elect someone new to take over. {/irony}

    5. 5% of the defense budget to defend our nation's schools. (it's a national security issue, right? right?)”

    ~joshua

  37. [37] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    another money-saving move that edu-corporations would hate, stop buying new textbooks and supplies when the old ones are still good, and let districts that don't have enough borrow from those who do. math books from fifty years ago are generally just as good as (or even better than) those being produced now. newer doesn't necessarily mean better, and we have to stop paying for things we don't need. technology and gadgets can make for improvements in teaching technique, but we also have to be more judicious in how we spend on those - let's have each teacher or principal have a budget to buy whatever tools and gadgets they want to use (and then PROVE that the expense is justified), not the whole district paying many millions for something that most classrooms never touch. our country spends a lot on "education" that never makes it to the classroom. we need to spend much more wisely.

    ~joshua

  38. [38] 
    akadjian wrote:


    And it is undeniable that ROmney's past is pretty damn good.

    Isn't it hard on the lips? :)

    -David

  39. [39] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I don't think the Right would oppose it, if it were framed in that manner.

    Correction: I don't think most people would oppose it.

    The Right would oppose it unless they were in power and it was their idea. Kind of like Romneycare :)

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    I think that's a great idea. I'd be happy to see more programs offered to put the unemployed to work. I don't want people on welfare either.

    You misunderstand...

    I don't mean that these programs would be "offered"..

    I mean that these programs would be MANDATORY.. IE, you work or you don't get benefits...

    How do you think the Left would view the idea now? :D

    Michale....

  41. [41] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    I mean that these programs would be MANDATORY.. IE, you work or you don't get benefits...

    How do you think the Left would view the idea now? :D

    i would think the right would have a lot bigger problem with that policy than the left. what you're describing is essentially marxism, the state giving according to needs and taking according to abilities. i suppose it's better than giving away free money to the lazy, but there's got to be a better way to go about it.

  42. [42] 
    akadjian wrote:

    You misunderstand... I mean that these programs would be MANDATORY.. IE, you work or you don't get benefits.

    I completely understood. By offer ... I simply meant that the program would be expanded beyond just those currently receiving unemployment benefits to others looking for work.

    I think if the right people were involved a program could be worked out.

    There would probably be some critiques from the Left that might help improve the program, but I think most would be ok with it.

    On the other hand, those in power on the Right would never be ok with it.

    In fact, you'd probably be labeled a socialist just for talking about it (especially w/ a liberal like me) :)

    -David

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    i would think the right would have a lot bigger problem with that policy than the left. what you're describing is essentially marxism, the state giving according to needs and taking according to abilities

    I wouldn't call it the state giving according to one's needs. It's simply forcing people to EARN their government dole...

    Instead of people getting lazy and fat off the government dole, they actually EARN the benefits they are getting.

    And, if the work is bad or menial enough, people will have a GREAT incentive to get OFF of Welfare..

    Isn't that what we want?? People OFF of Welfare and earning their way??

    i suppose it's better than giving away free money to the lazy, but there's got to be a better way to go about it.

    "If there is a better plan, well.. I'm all ears."
    -Ross Perot, 1992 Presidential Debate

    :D

    As far as I am concerned practically ANYTHING is better than giving people an incentive NOT to work...

    Which is the way it is now...

    Michale....

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    In fact, you'd probably be labeled a socialist just for talking about it (especially w/ a liberal like me) :)

    I've been accused of worse.. And in much worse company.. :D

    I don't know if that came out right, but it wasn't meant to be insulting.. :D

    I don't see why the Right would have a problem with it.. It's simply making people EARN their benefits....

    If there is ANY logical reason why this shouldn't be implemented, I would love to hear it...

    Michale.....

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    There would probably be some critiques from the Left that might help improve the program, but I think most would be ok with it.

    Want to put that to the test??? :D

    Run it up the flagpole at Daily KOS and see who salutes.. :D

    Michale.....

  46. [46] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    david,

    i forgot to mention, in case you're interested, another great author on the school reform movement is joanne barkan. take a look at the following link, as well as the three links below the by-line:

    http://dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=4240

  47. [47] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Looks like I've got quite a few comments to get through, here. One by one...

    Michale [13] -

    See that Hallowe'en horror story I linked to above.

    St. Augustine sounds nice.

    Michale [16] -

    Saw the pizza vending machine on Craig Ferguson, and I have to admit it's a pretty cool idea. He also gets the credit for turning me on [pun intended] to the softball game I mentioned in this week's FTP.

    Michale [18] -

    Man, I need to go read a Horatio Alger novel just to wind down from this comment....

    Heh.

    Chris1962 [20] -

    David is way cool. He's worth sitting down and having a beer with, that's for sure!

    Strategies were a big part of NRN, but I tend to take a lot of it with a grain of salt. I think for myself, and interpret things on my own. I sat in on a few such strategy sessions, mostly to keep up on what was going on, but I have to say they didn't influence my thinking all that much. But maybe I'm not the typical NRN attendee, I dunno.

    I do hear your "fear of God" thing, which was a theme at the last two NRNs, but I think this year it's mostly boiled down to "Romney would be a lot worse, so let's all pull together for now."

    Michale [21] -

    Give it a rest. The White House was obviously making sure that it got its facts straight before going public. In this cable-TV world we live in, that might sound unusual, but it really isn't.

    akadjian [22] -

    Shhhh! You're not supposed to tell!

    Heh.

    He's right, the NRN is like a lot of the Left -- not exactly in lockstep. Lots of sessions to choose from (like 8 or 10 for each timeslot), and lots of different subjects to discuss. We're not part of Obama's campaign team, it's got a much bigger picture than that.

    Michale [24] -

    OK, the Dr. Evil photo was funny, I'll admit.

    Michale [25] -

    We've been telling you for years the "liberal media" is a myth. They're corporate media, and they love conflict over anything else -- doesn't matter what the conflict is, as long as it doesn't interfere with the corporate profits.

    dsws [26] -

    How about, "Do you post in the comments section? I don't recognize your name, but do I know you by userID?"

    Now that is a downright excellent suggestion, and one I will be sure to use in the future. See, I just knew there was a better answer to this conundrum! Thanks!

    Chris1962 [29] -

    Oh, we had plenty of fun doing other things. I know it'll probably be a shock for you, but the Left actually revels in its "herding cats" nature. So not a whole lot of lockstep stuff, although the Van Jones speech was pretty inspiring.

    Heh.

    Michale [33] -

    The problem with Greece is that the rich folks had such a sense of entitlement towards their own government that they stopped paying their fair share in taxes. Look it up. If Greece had been collecting all the taxes it had been due for years, it wouldn't be in the crisis it finds itself in today.

    And the Left would LOVE another CCC or other Depression Era "get them back to work" program. But the Republicans would never let it happen. The Right would indeed oppose it, with every breath in their bodies.

    And you need to review Clinton's "welfare reform" because that's exactly what he signed -- forcing people back to work.

    nypoet22 [36] -

    2. consolidate districts into one per county. only one superintendent and school board, not twelve different ones catering to just their own little corner. and no administrative position making more than twice the compensation of the highest paid teacher. superintendents are currently politicians, not educators. as such, they're expendable.

    Oh, freakin' HEAR HEAR!!!

    I grew up in a county with ONE school district. My mom worked in it. I live in California now, where there are like SIXTEEN school districts inside of one smallish county. It's preposterous. Even small towns have multiple school districts -- one for the rich side of town's elementary schools, one for the poor side of town. Another (each) for the middle schools and yet another layer of chair-warmers for the high schools. It is complete insanity. I could not agree more with your point. Just had to say that. One county should equal ONE school district. PERIOD.

    nypoet22 [37] -

    OK, but with one caveat: History books need updating. The American history books available to K-12 students have improved noticeably in the past two decades, and are likely to keep improving for the next few decades. Math is one thing -- it doesn't change much, as you pointed out. But history is another -- finally historians writing for K-12 are getting a few things right, and it behooves us to get those books to the kids.

    See: the book "Lies My Teacher Taught Me" and any history book produced since.

    nypoet22 [41] -

    You raise a good point. It was illegal in the Soviet Union not to have a job.

    OK, I have finally come to the bottom! Apologies for not commenting earlier.

    -CW

  48. [48] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    We've been telling you for years the "liberal media" is a myth. They're corporate media, and they love conflict over anything else -- doesn't matter what the conflict is, as long as it doesn't interfere with the corporate profits.

    But it's NOT a myth. There is too much empirical evidence that supports the claim that the MSM is in the bag for Obama...

    Matthew's "tingle" is a prime example..

    As I said before... If the MSM was solely about "profits" and "ratings" and "conflict" then they would push the GOP agenda a LOT more often. The Florida shooting is a prime example. If the MSM had actually reported the FACTS, there would have massive protests and riots... The MSM would have been in hog heaven..

    So, ratings and profits doesn't fit all the facts...

    The MSM being in the bag for Obama DOES fit all the facts...

    OK, but with one caveat: History books need updating. The American history books available to K-12 students have improved noticeably in the past two decades, and are likely to keep improving for the next few decades. Math is one thing -- it doesn't change much, as you pointed out. But history is another -- finally historians writing for K-12 are getting a few things right, and it behooves us to get those books to the kids.

    The solution is simple..

    Get rid of books.. Issue each kid a laptop.. Keyed to a central history web site that can be updated as necessary...

    Think of the money it will save.. Think of the medical issues it will resolve..

    It would TOTALLY revamp school life as we knew it. No more lockers...

    It's mind-boggling.. :D

    Michale.....

  49. [49] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I do hear your "fear of God" thing, which was a theme at the last two NRNs, but I think this year it's mostly boiled down to "Romney would be a lot worse, so let's all pull together for now."

    That's a shame. That's the same trap liberals keep falling into. Rewarding the pols who screw them just ensures that your pols continue screwing you, secure in the knowledge that there will never be a price to pay. You should spend this year working up a strategy to introduce next year, centered around that very reality. All it takes is sitting out one election — just one. It will forever strike fear in the hearts of Dem candidates and officials, who will forever thereafter remember "the time the liberal base stayed home."

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's a shame. That's the same trap liberals keep falling into. Rewarding the pols who screw them just ensures that your pols continue screwing you, secure in the knowledge that there will never be a price to pay.

    Doing the same thing over and over again, hoping for a different result..

    The very definition of insanity...

    "We're not making the same mistakes THIS time, I can tell you!!"
    "No, no. You're making all NEW mistakes..."

    -Jurassic Park II

    :D

    Michale.....

  51. [51] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    So, ratings and profits doesn't fit all the facts...

    The MSM being in the bag for Obama DOES fit all the facts...

    umm, no. that conclusion requires the a priori assumption that the MSM is a single unified entity that behaves in a rational and orderly manner. neither is the case. money and ratings are certainly part of the mess, but you're banging your head against the wall trying to apply logic to the MSM. the MSM does not behave logically.

    among the likeliest reasons why obama tends to get favorable media coverage:

    1. he's a handsome man and a great public speaker. that fits the ratings/profits motive, but even if it didn't, people in general tend to be prejudiced in favor of highly attractive people who speak well. unless they are tightly controlled by dictates from management (e.g. fox), the same prejudices apply to media people as everyone else.

    2. O's very skilled at playing the media game. (see CW's article on the administration's roll-out of his gay marriage "evolution")

    as to the martin-zimmerman incident, some accountants for the media world probably would have been happy if there had been more rodney king type riots, but as i said, you're trying to apply rational rules to irrational people in a system governed by chaos.

    "Mr. Spock, the women on your planet are logical. That's the only planet in the galaxy that can make that claim."

    same goes for men. same goes for the media.

    ~joshua

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    you're trying to apply rational rules to irrational people in a system governed by chaos.

    There is simply TOO much positive coverage of Obama and too little negative coverage for it to be random "chaos"...

    Now, I am not saying there is a coordinated effort amongst all of the MSM entities to treat Obama as a god and attack anyone who disagrees. But the JournoList etc etc certainly lends itself to such an explanation..

    No, for their own reasons, the vast majority of the MSM is in the bag for Obama..

    Perhaps it is as you say. He is handsome, he is a great speaker, etc etc..

    I tend to think it's simply because Obama is black. And every reporter likes to think of themselves as racially tolerant.. Kowtowing to Obama simply re-enforces that fallacy to themselves..

    But regardless of WHY the MSM is in the bag for Obama, the facts seem clear that, in general, the MSM is indeed in the bag...

    Michale

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    "Mr. Spock, the women on your planet are logical. That's the only planet in the galaxy that can make that claim."

    same goes for men. same goes for the media.

    I am trying to recall the episode without googling..

    IS THERE IN TRUTH NO BEAUTY???

    Michale.....

  54. [54] 
    akadjian wrote:

    http://dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=4240

    Thanks for the link, Joshua ... Since I'm not in academia anymore (for a long time actually ...), I always appreciate hearing what's going on in the trenches. I also still have a lot of friends and family who are teachers and all of them feel under attack from the "privatize" marketeers.

    And Chris ... wasn't able to read your comments until this morning, but there are so many good points in that response it was worth checking back.

    That's a shame. That's the same trap liberals keep falling into. Rewarding the pols who screw them just ensures that your pols continue screwing you, secure in the knowledge that there will never be a price to pay.

    And Chris1962 ... if you're still out there. This is an interesting comment. But there's better ways to do this than sitting out an election. Besides, the resulting Republican wave would likely introduce election legislation to only allow registered Republicans to vote :) ... kidding, it wouldn't be quite that obvious.

    Nevertheless, Citizen's United is going to change the game. Mark my words. And it might not change it in ways that conservatives intended.

    As for Karl Rove stealing your material ... I thought you worked for an ad firm that ummm ... does this kind of stuff.

    -David

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    And Chris1962 ... if you're still out there. This is an interesting comment. But there's better ways to do this than sitting out an election. Besides, the resulting Republican wave would likely introduce election legislation to only allow registered Republicans to vote :) ... kidding, it wouldn't be quite that obvious.

    You mean, as obvious as telling the DOJ to ignore the law so as to create 2-3 million new voters that are foresworn to Democrats???

    :D

    Michale.....

  56. [56] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Chris1962 [49] -

    You sure this isn't just wishful thinking on your part, hmmm? Dems sit out the 2012 election?

    Heh.

    Actually, I admire the gay rights folks. They did exactly what you suggest -- they're big donors, and they threatened to turn off the ATM. As a direct result, Obama has given the gay rights folks more things than ANY other liberal group during his entire time in office.

    In other words, what you're suggesting works. It's not sour grapes from me (for my own pet issues), it is admiration for any group of Lefties who can hang together with that degree of discipline.

    -CW

  57. [57] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Joshua [51] -

    Excellent Star Trek quote. Very apropos. Just had to say that.

    :-)

    -CW

  58. [58] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [52] -

    Please explain how McCain was spared all examination of his past, while Obama's past was dug through with a fine-toothed comb. Please explain why that accident on the carrier never made the news. Some called McCain an "ace" for the North Vietnamese, because he had destroyed three US planes -- but that never got in the news. I wrote an article about it at the time, but the MSM never once looked over McCain's record. It was "heroic POW" all the time. Talk about a tingle up the leg...

    The MSM is corporate. The thing in Florida didn't affect corporate profits one way or another, so they didn't care how it was presented.

    -CW

  59. [59] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [53] -

    It's gotta be "Amok Time"... right?

    -CW

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    Please explain how McCain was spared all examination of his past, while Obama's past was dug through with a fine-toothed comb.

    Fine tooth comb???

    Com'on.. Obama was the first un-vetted president to be elected..

    You have said so yourself that we know VERY little about Obama's positions on many things.

    That's because we know very little about his past.

    When we see ALL of his paperwork (ya know, the kinda paperwork that the Left dug up on Bush) THEN I will admit that Obama has been investigated with a fine-tooth comb...

    It's gotta be "Amok Time"... right?

    I don't think so. Because that episode dealt with "Vulcan women"..

    I have restrained myself from GOOGLEing it, as I am hoping it will come to me.. :D

    Michale.....

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW

    You sure this isn't just wishful thinking on your part, hmmm? Dems sit out the 2012 election?

    Actually, it's the DEMs that should be wishing for this..

    How in the hell do you expect your Democrat leaders to do your bidding if they know that you will vote them back in to power even if they don't!???

    The Left always makes a big stink about staying home but, with most of them, it's just blather...

    You yourself have commented many times how the Left, in general, has no backbone as far as holding their Democrat representatives accountable..

    Say what you want about the Right, but they are more ideological effective than the Left...

    The people on the Right actually hold control and power over their representatives..

    The Left?? They are like cat owners.. They like to pretend that their in charge, but EVERYONE knows that it's the cat that's running things..

    :D

    Now, if THAT didn't bring a smile to your face, you are obviously not awake yet.. :D

    Michale....

  62. [62] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    good guesses, but all incorrect. nonetheless, the positive response brings tears to my eyes. *hint*

    How in the hell do you expect your Democrat leaders to do your bidding if they know that you will vote them back in to power even if they don't!???

    on social and cultural areas, such as gay marriage, progressive political action has worked and continues to work. this is largely because there is no major economic interest in those issues either way. when push comes to shove on those issues, the economic big guns don't really care.

    however, if you organize a populist movement that threatens to cut into corporate profits, you'll be demonized by the neo-liberal establishment faster than you can say "occupy."

    ~joshua

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    I got it, but I have to be honest and say I GOOGLE'ed it..

    I'll provide a further hint and say that the imputes for Kirk's line was REALLY whacked out. :D

    on social and cultural areas, such as gay marriage, progressive political action has worked and continues to work. this is largely because there is no major economic interest in those issues either way. when push comes to shove on those issues, the economic big guns don't really care.

    however, if you organize a populist movement that threatens to cut into corporate profits, you'll be demonized by the neo-liberal establishment faster than you can say "occupy."

    So, what you are saying is that the Left believes have a loaf is better than no loaf...

    I guess that's logical. But it sure gives the Democrats a LOT of power over the Left. They know that all they have to do is keep feeding their base crumbs and their base will continue to do what they're told...

    Helluva way to run a Political Party...

    The problem is, it can't last forever. The base will soon tire of crumbs and then it will get very VERY ugly...

    Michale....

  64. [64] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    The problem is, it can't last forever. The base will soon tire of crumbs and then it will get very VERY ugly...

    agreed, and that time is rapidly approaching.

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    agreed, and that time is rapidly approaching.

    Agreed..

    Once again, I guess we're done here. :D

    Michale.....

Comments for this article are closed.
[Powered by WordPress]