Entries Tagged 'Politics Blogs' ↓
October 18th, 2013 — Book Thoughts, Politics Blogs, Teacher Reads
Opinion columnists try to persuade readers to their point of view. The honest way is to be true to facts and ideas on the other side while explaining a different opinion. The dishonest way is to distort facts and ideas on the other side to make your opinion look like the better one.
Here is an example of the second from John Hood, regarding the latest chapter in North Carolina’s Leandro lawsuit:
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February 16th, 2013 — Book Thoughts, Politics Blogs
I recently saw a yard sign that said, “Fire Obama.” It made me wonder:
If the homeowner is that angry with a president who has done nothing to destroy American life, he/she must have been livid with the Bush administration’s intelligence failures leading up to 9/11, thousands of dead and wounded American soldiers in Iraq, and the economic collapse of 2008.
The yard sign must have been REALLY ugly back in 2008.
February 13th, 2013 — Book Thoughts, I Love Irony, Politics Blogs
According to former Vice President Dick Cheney:
The performance now of Barack Obama as he staffs up the national security team for the second term is dismal.
I love the irony of Dick Cheney denouncing what might happen in the future. Does he think we don’t know what happened in the past?
At the 1:45 mark of The Daily Show on February 12, we get Jon Stewart’s explanation for why we should not listen to Dick Cheney.
February 4th, 2013 — Book Thoughts, I Love Irony, Politics Blogs, Teacher Reads
I love these stories about bad teachers (story available but not video). This one is especially juicy because it involves the waste of more than $1 million over thirteen years. Teachers have the right to what lawyers call “due process.” In states with teacher bargaining rights, all the technicalities of this process are spelled out in the Master Contract, which is agreed to by the school board and the teacher union.
So, let’s be clear about who is responsible for this person receiving more than $1 million in salary. It is the school administration and the school boards that agreed to the Master Contract language.
Have we learned anything from this gross misuse of resources? Apparently not. The last statement in the video is, “No major plans to change the policy have been announced.”
If you don’t need to know more than (1) we have this situation that needs to be changed, but (2) nothing is being done to change it, you can stop reading here. But if you want to know how we got to this point, here is the short story:
Collective bargaining involves lawyers in crafting language and strategies aimed at getting what they want for their side — either the school board or the teacher union. For many years school boards sought to hold down teacher salaries, so they gave teachers what they wanted in the “language” part of the Master Contract, which includes procedures for supervising and evaluating teachers. Board members agreed to many unwise language provisions so they could say to taxpayers, “I kept salaries low; teachers didn’t strike; re-elect me.”
So — to all who revere the democratic process, how is that working? Do you like that we are paying this person more than $1 million to not teach? Do you like that we have no plans to change the policy? If not, why do you like the democratic governance of public education that created this situation?
Or is there somebody out there who wants to replace democratic governance with educational governance — governance that models the six virtues of the educated person? If not, we will continue to have uneducated school board members elected by uneducated citizens. Of course some of our most “uneducated” board members and citizens have multiple college degrees. I love irony.
September 29th, 2012 — Book Thoughts, I Love Irony, Politics Blogs
Those who want me to vote for Mitt Romney purchased a billboard in our area that refers to the presidency of Barack Obama this way: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” Republicans must think I can’t remember 2008, when it was apparent that we were already fooled twice — in 2000 and 2004.
Their billboard says we were fooled in 2008, but not even the staunchest Republican knows that for sure, since we are still trying to dig our way out of near economic collapse. We all know for sure, however, that the 8-year administration of George W. Bush brought us to the brink of economic collapse. That is beyond dispute. A Republican President was handed a surplus in 2000; and in January, 2009, he handed President Obama an economy in free fall. The billboard sponsors must think I have forgotten that history.
Thanks to their attempt at being clever, I ask who should be ashamed if we are fooled a third time? I love irony.
August 10th, 2012 — Book Thoughts, Politics Blogs
Why do I blog about politics here? It’s because those who work in public schools know that education is directed and controlled by elected officials. As explained in TSVOTEP, however, that does not mean teachers and principals should wait for policy makers to steer public education in a positive direction. Whenever my graduate students say their superiors should read TSVOTEP, I remind them that, if we wait for central office administrators or politicians to define the educated person in six-virtue terms, we will wait forever.
Richard Elmore argues a similar point from a different angle.
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August 9th, 2012 — Book Thoughts, I Love Irony, Politics Blogs
MSNBC is now the liberal distorter of conservative views, just as Fox has always been the conservative distorter of liberal views. When Jon Stewart claimed this equivalency in November, 2010, I disagreed.
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August 6th, 2012 — I Love Irony, Politics Blogs
On Hannity’s show former Vice President Cheney said this about current President Obama:
“I think he’s been a terrible president.” I love irony.
July 13th, 2012 — Book Thoughts, Cut the Crap, Politics Blogs
I have written about political rhetoric before. In one blog I described the difference between liberal and conservative media this way:
The liberal media use the actual words of conservatives (sometimes out of context, sometimes not) to ridicule their ideas and philosophy. The right-wing media distorts the words (and beliefs) of liberals, and then ridicules them. . . In the language of debate competitions, they “prop up a straw man and knock it down.”
Here is the Romney campaign reaction to President Obama explaining the biggest mistake of his first term: Continue reading →
May 31st, 2012 — Book Thoughts, Politics Blogs
This morning I learned two things.
CBS Sunday Morning (May 27) reported that our interstate highways are badly in need of repair. FDR and Ike created an infrastructure that provides enormous economic benefits. Unfortunately for both businesses and customers, it has been poorly maintained since the early 1990s, the last time the federal gas tax was increased.
Second, an Asheville Citizen-Times (AC-T, May 27, p. A1) article described the city council’s process for selling the land across from the U.S. Cellular Center and St. Lawrence Basilica — an historic landmark and city treasure. A hotel developer wants to purchase the land and so does the Diocese of Charlotte. The first wants to build a 3-story hotel and public plaza. The second wants to better preserve the view of the Basilica with a plaza and smaller building. The article described the complexity of the decision — explaining a timeline and a 2008 agreement with the hotel developer.
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