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Some of you may remember this rant I wrote that made the rec list.

Well, today my father sent me another e-mail with the subject line, "This Will Piss You Off, but Somebody Needs to Get Obama a Teleprompter."

Glad he sent it because I have not been pissed off in a while. I didn't watch the video at first, opting for a cut-to-the-chase approach.  Later, I watched the video and found that it was a collection of gaffes and rhetorical stumbles.   So I am glad that I replied...and made it personal.

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I am looking for some way to balance the budget and bring down unemployment while appeasing the free market deity our leaders must appease, lest their houses be destroyed and the country turned into a pillar of dung.  I have an idea that might be useful, and if not, could at least become a leftward goal to apply to the Overton window.

During the debt ceiling hostage crisis, we heard a lot about triggers.  Namely, if one condition is not met, then ____ will happen.

And....

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Congressman Issa and his staff wade into Facebook to get a little love for the  House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Republicans.  They are sure you are going to be as excited as they are about "Rooting out potential waste, fraud and abuse of tax-payer dollars."

But it seems the people who "like" them don't really like them...

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Sat May 21, 2011 at 08:48 PM PDT

The Rapture Post Mortem

by NearlySomebody

This is going to sound silly to many of you, but as the dust clears to reveal that nothing extraordinary has happened, I have a simple request of Kossaks who consider themselves religious and/or spiritual.

Please make the jump to see what it is...

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I sometimes go THERE, so you don't have to.  There is, of course, the StudentsFirst(dot)org/Michelle Rhee zombie club.  You might say, “Nearlysomebody, it is unfair of you to call them zombies.  They might have just missed the rapture by a hair.”  But once you see what passes for truth there, you will agree with me:  zombies.

See, what they post there are stories, ostensibly of teachers, all of whom reject things like tenure and unions, because they really love the students. In their minds, unions and tenure just protect bad teachers while, for reasons left unclear, punish GOOD teachers, and therefore, all the tender baby lambs that we teachers refer to as students.  So they posted a new article today, and several facebook "friends"  felt the need to post it and declare how great it is to see a brave teacher bucking the status quo.  So here is the article and my commentary.

Poll

But what about the children?

3%1 votes
12%4 votes
9%3 votes
75%24 votes

| 32 votes | Vote | Results

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I am in a near-constant debate with a facebook friend who is deeply invested in the Michelle Rhee thing.  He finally asked me why I was so opposed to sorely needed education reform.  I wrote tthe following.  I would love to hear your ideas about making the list more comprehensive.  Likewise, if I have oversimplified things, please let me know.

Poll

But what about the children?

9%11 votes
1%2 votes
9%11 votes
80%96 votes

| 120 votes | Vote | Results

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Fri Oct 15, 2010 at 08:13 PM PDT

Why I Am an Educator

by NearlySomebody

I know you have all seen that new movie about the charter schools, but charter schools do not necessarily perform better than public schools.  Most often, the drive for charter schools has little to do with academics or improving student learning.   In Zhang’s "What Drives Charter School Diffusion at the Local Level: Educational Needs or Political and Institutional Forces?" (2008), it is concluded that, "Based on a data set that consists of Florida's 67 school districts across a six-year time period, the results suggest that charter school diffusion is more heavily driven by political and institutional factors than by educational needs."

I have been in education for a long time, and before that, I was the son, nephew, cousin, and grandson of educators.  Let me tell you what happens.  

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I have found yet another really stupid article about how we can fix education here in America.

How to fix our schools: A manifesto by Joel Klein, Michelle Rhee and other education leaders

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The deal conservatives made to keep power was that they would pitch tent with the religious right, so legalizing drugs (or any other truly laissez-fair social policy) will never happen.

On one hand, it is pretty schizophrenic to believe in Jesus and ruthless, social Darwinism at the same time. But on the other hand, the compartmentalism doesn't bother them because it allows them an easy out.

Poll

I thought that this

23%4 votes
17%3 votes
0%0 votes
52%9 votes
5%1 votes

| 17 votes | Vote | Results

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Wish I could write something in anger and disgust EVERY morning at 2AM then wake up at 7 and have my wife tell me I am on the rec list.  Glad you all find this useful.  I am just sick and tired of pussyfooting around HOW WE GOT INTO THIS MESS.  For those of you who object to the salty language, my apologies.  Please take it out, rinse and repeat.  For those of you who asked about how it will affect my relationship with my family, worry not.  My family, though politically divided, is big on love and understanding of each other.  I have an awesome family.  For those who asked if they could use parts of it, by all means, take it away.

For the past few years I have been getting email forwards from my dad.  He always asks if they are true, and I always do a little bit of research and debunk them.  And that was ok, if annoying.  But I finally sent the email I have been fearing I would, and now I wonder about the repercussions.

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I live in Illinois and owe 158k on a condo worth approximately half that.  The condo right below mine is in short sale for 75k.  The developer, now bankrupt, took all kinds of shortcuts and left us all kinds of problems for which our assessments have doubled.  

And here is how it got even worse...

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I live in Illinois and owe 158k on a condo worth approximately half that.  The condo right below mine is in short sale for 75k.  The developer, now bankrupt, took all kinds of shortcuts and left us all kinds of problems for which our assessments have doubled.  

And here is how it went down...

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