"It's all about upholding the law,"
And more on DeVos
As I said earlier, this appointment is a sop to the religious right (one of the extreme ends of it). Whether her name was pushed by Jim DeMint or someone else, it is another manifestation of movement conservatives frightening level of power in DC now. None of us has any reason to believe that Trump cares a whit about education as he's displayed no interest in it (or in the children and adolescents in the system). The motivation here is consolidation of his power through appeasing the modern hierarchy of power/influence in the party/movement.
I increasingly find very little evidence of anything but intense prejudice and a preconceived perspective in your offerings on these matters. Certainly they contain very little reporting of facts or evidence of curiosity about new events, and even less intelligent analysis or accurately labeled spectulation about them. Most of it is cut and pasted opinion of others, combined with your own overheated imaginings, all involving the same very shopworn theories about "movement conservastism" etc. and none of it ever balanced with consideration of simiular things in other contexts. I find no intellectual content in them if that is your conceit. Do you actually think that stuff constiututes a meaningful contribution to any intelligent discussion?
With so much incentive to make money and so little regulation or oversight, fraud and graft are inevitable. Just this past summer, the founder of the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School admitted that he had stolen $8 million from the company for his own use. Cyber charters are amazingly lucrative and unpoliced. The largest of them, K12 Inc., was founded by ex-financier Michael Milken and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Its academic results are poor, but it is very profitable. Each student gets a computer and an online teacher. The company collects full state tuition, even though it has none of the expenses of a real school, like custodians, transportation, a library, a social worker, groundskeepers, heat, or other utilities.
A for-profit cyber charter in Ohio—the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT)—is known for very poor performance. It has the lowest graduation rate of any high school in the nation (20 percent), and it recently fought in court and lost, trying to prevent the state from auditing its attendance rates, which were grossly inflated. The state is now trying to recoup at least $60 million from the school for students who never logged on to their home computers. The owner of ECOT is one of the state’s biggest donors to elected officials who control state government, and until now, has never been held accountable for either attendance or the quality of education it provides.
In his final chapters, Abrams offers Finland as a nation that has chosen a different path and avoided school choice. It performs well on international tests, even though its students seldom encounter standardized tests. Its national goal is to make every school a good school. Teaching is a highly respected profession, requiring five years of education and preparation. While many American schools have abandoned recess to make more time for testing, Finnish schools offer recess after every class. While American students begin learning their letters and numbers in kindergarten or even in pre-kindergarten, Finnish students do not begin formal instruction in reading and mathematics until they reach the age of seven. Until then, the focus in school is on play. The schools emphasize creativity, joy in learning, the arts, and physical education. Child poverty is low, and children get free medical care. Teachers are trusted to write their own tests. Critics say that American society is too diverse to copy a nation that is homogeneous, but it is hard to see why racial and social diversity cancels out the value of anything done in Finnish schools to make children healthier, happier, and more engaged in learning.
David Frum @davidfrum 5h5 hours ago
Trump won according to the rules, but if I were his team, I'd go ixnay on "the people have spoken" bit. Reality is just the reverse
Results of the election won't change.
more and more I want to see Sarah Palin and her snowmobile arrive in D.C.
But a closer look reveals that some of the biggest fake news providers were run by experienced political operators well within the orbit of Donald Trump’s political advisers and consultants.
Laura Ingraham, a close Trump ally currently under consideration to be Trump’s White House press secretary, owns an online publisher called Ingraham Media Group that runs a number of sites, including LifeZette, a news site that frequently posts articles of dubious veracity. One video produced by LifeZette this summer, ominously titled “Clinton Body Count,” promoted a conspiracy theory that the Clinton family had some role in the plane crash death of John F. Kennedy, Jr., as well as the deaths of various friends and Democrats.
...Another LifeZette video, picking up false claims from other sites, claimed that voting machines “might be compromised” because a voting machine company called Smartmatic, allegedly providing voting machines “in sixteen states,” was purchased by the liberal billionaire George Soros. Soros never purchased the company, and Smartmatic did not provide voting machines used in the general election.
Don’t underestimate the degree to which a black man, poised and unflappably calm, speaking truth about the hopes of a nation to a white politician is exactly the kind of nightmare from which some of Trump’s voters thought they were finally awakening.
anybody who walks through the doors of a theater should be prepared to have preconceptions challenged, beliefs questioned, certitudes shaken, ideas adjusted, worldviews broadened, and perspectives shifted. People who consider that a threat to their safety should probably stay away from theater and the rest of popular culture altogether. For the rest of us, that’s not only safe, it’s essential.
You can do two things if you’re on a stage: Show or tell. There are those who feel Hamilton should have stuck with the first; instead, the cast and production team chose, for one night, to do both. While this is going to be a very long and ugly fight, I'd award them a narrow victory-by-decision in Culture Wars, Round One. They saw an extraordinary circumstance looming before them, they stood up, they represented themselves and others with firmness and dignity, and they sparked plenty of meaningful, non-distracting dialogue by doing so. Chances to speak truth directly to power, even when power turns its back and starts walking up the aisle, may be rarer than we would wish in the next four years. When the opportunity comes along, there’s much to be said for not throwing away your shot.
The cognitive dissonance in the GOP right now has got to be shattering a few minds.
Elected Mr. Super-Elite to help Joe the Plumber.
Truthfully, I'm not interested in Mr. Trump or what happens to the US overall over the next 3 - 6 years.