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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 4:02 am 
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Yeah, you do detect a bit of anger in me. The video appearance of McCain defending don't ask don't tell is the reason. He insists (pretty grumpily) that the military doesn't investigate soldiers, which is of course a lot of baloney. He's gone off his nut, or he's lying. I respect your right to consider him an expert in current military practice w.r.t DADT, and relatively more than an expert on DADT than everyone else who's served and is serving, because his duty was tough. But I don't get it at all.

"It's intellectually lazy and it fails to inform."

Oh, baloney. People make generalizations because it's helpful for communication. My point was that the parties select people that are more extreme than the general public prefers and I don't know any sane people who would argue this point. I think you're complaining about the "label" thing just for sport. Enjoy.

"More anger. Oy!!! How about live and let live, Ian. Would it kill you? How about not casting literally billions of people on this planet into one bucket and classifying them all as one view opposed to your own?"

Um, I didn't say I disagreed with them. While you are busy telling me to read what you wrote, which was that we should make life easier specifically for the religious, read what I wrote, which was that I support several religious charities. That's some funny opposition, that kind I support with dollars. Why would I think you would distinguish charities by their religiousness and not their effectiveness? Well, you said to make life easier for religious charities and didn't mention effectiveness. So I was confused.

"Meanwhile... Just how do you propose the population learn about The Golden Rule, issues with mortality, self-worth, etc., etc. without getting a nanny government involved or waste precious tax dollars in the schools when they really should be teaching math and science?"

Well, the obvious answer is that families do it. Religious ones, atheist ones, both can be good ones. This is what conservatives said when Hillary claimed it took a village. No, no, it takes a family. And I totally agree. I do not think for half a second that you need any help from a church or government teaching right from wrong to your kids. Do you disagree?

"Would it kill you to let the religious enjoy their myriad fellowships?"

No, so I do.

"Does it bug you that religion actually may help some people be better people?"

Nope.

"Don't you think that a Democracy needs good people?"

Well here is a place we disagree. I think democracy is better off with cannibal zombies :roll: Your logic appears to be that because some people become better people in church then for the good of the nation I should set out to support religious institutions? My opinion isn't slowly them down, so would you like a check? There are lots of institutions who improve people. I'm not going to preferentially support the ones that are religious. And yeah, are views aren't terribly far apart, I just have a reaction to the suggestion we support religious institutions because I recall government $ going to evangelical abstinence programs that backfired, etc. I'm a results oriented person. What can I say?

As far as working together and compromise, let me send out my first props to the Pope for finally acknowledging the utility of condoms. Amazing! I thought that was set in stone. Although Catholics (at least per my ethics profs, correct me if I'm wrong) have long allowed undesired bad results when the goal was good (the law of double effect) as when you can accelerate death with morphine (only if you aim only to alleviate suffering) and you can crush an infant's skull to save a mother dying in labor (obviously, only if your goal is to save one rather than lose both). And in 2010 sane people accept that regardless of how you feel about condoms and God's reproductive plan, not spreading AIDS is a reasonable priority.

I also read an interesting piece on abortion activitists (choice and life) and how they should compromise recently. Seemed eminently reasonable.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 4:07 am 
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Here's how I can quickly lose respect for McCain:

See his comments at :38 and a bit of reality at 2:57 for a bit (apologies for the host).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoV5-8pVGbY&NR=1

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 9:57 am 
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How did we go from balancing the budget to DADT? Oh, hi Ian! :lol:

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 2:22 pm 
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Jason Rees wrote:

How did we go from balancing the budget to DADT? Oh, hi Ian! :lol:

Precisely.

It's a red herring and a massive distraction. It is a waste of human potential - on ALL sides of the argument.

It's a reason why the followers of Obama/Pelosi/Reid are getting their butts kicked in the voting booth.

After 1992, Clinton got it. I have to hand it to Slick Willie; he's an extraordinarily (and sometimes dangerously) smart man - both intellectually and emotionally. Perhaps we should add his wife to the net of that intelligence.

Reid and Pelosi are so hopelessly self-serving (at the expense of us all) that our nation is better served with them being the poster children of bad government. They are toxic. Members of Congress in relatively moderate districts who associate themselves with the duo are toast.

Obama is still clueless.

IMO the good that comes from it all is that we now have at least part of a Congress in opposition with the party in the executive mansion. At the least, the drunken spending binge is about to end. Yin has met yang. Dynamic tension leads to controlled movement.

It's a shame we don't have a leader with vision and an ability to get things done in the midst of all the many social distractions.

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- Bill


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:45 am 
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I know. Democrats are toxic and stupid, and Republicans are clever angels. It must be so frustrating for you to live in this world Bill. Why can't we all get along, like those Republicans who have been masters of cheerful bipartisan cooperation for the last 15 years? :roll:

Here's an interesting piece on the budget mess which is free of the combative politic nonsense we get in the states because it comes from somewhere else. It's from my preferred news source (I'm told it's Salon.com, which has for years come in print disguised with the title The Economist slapped on the front of it. Wonder why).

http://www.economist.com/node/17520102? ... N=55134960

There really isn't a whole lot to discuss. People have to slash entitlements or we're cooked. The question is when, given that we have a recession at the moment, and people are loathe to tax or reduce spending. But here's an paragraph of interest:

"From 1946 to 1981 was an era of giveaway: entitlements expanded, most notably with Medicare and Medicaid in 1965, and taxes were cut, most famously in Ronald Reagan’s first year in office, in 1981. In 1982, however, fiscal policy flipped to takeaway. Mr Reagan’s tax cuts and defence build-up, compounded by the 1981-82 recession and sky-high real interest rates, produced record structural deficits. Pete Domenici, then a junior Republican senator, remembers going to the White House with other Republicans in 1982 to talk to Reagan about the deficit. He recalls the president’s stunned disbelief when he told him that he could run up more debt than all his predecessors combined."

Yes, yes, yes, Reagan is innocent because the Congress is wholly responsible for the budget. Minor aside on Reagan but nice to see a different perspective in a magazine that enthusiastically supports small government and capitalism. We basically have to raise social security eligibility ages and reduce our Medicare outlays, with clever more efficient healthcare if possible, but if not, simple rationing.

Here's another article on the newly divided government we voted in:

http://www.economist.com/node/17522210? ... d=17522210

I remembered reading it because the paragraph that follows caught my eye. It's a more dispassionate review of Obama's Marxist healthcare plot than the koolaid they've spiked the "tea" with, and I immediately thought of Bill:

"As to hubris, the Republican freshmen bound for Congress next January are in danger of reading into the election a message of their own creation. Many see the mid-terms as a popular rejection of the president’s “extreme” policies. This is doubtful. Voters were more likely registering a protest at the economy than repudiating an ideology. Besides, to the disgust of his own progressive base, Mr Obama enacted no extreme policies. Obamacare is a good deal less radical than the plan Richard Nixon proposed in 1974 or Bill Clinton 20 years later. In fact it closely resembles the bill the Republicans put up as an alternative to Mr Clinton’s, and its central idea—the individual mandate—was introduced in Massachusetts by none other than Mitt Romney, who hopes to become the Republicans’ presidential nominee in 2012."

PS: As for DADT it's not a reason Obama was getting his butt kicked, unless it's because a few disappointed left leaning moderates abandoned him for NOT DOING ANYTHING ABOUT IT. As for being a distraction, yeah, it is, and that could end instantly if people made the obvious, just, logical (and inevitable?) decision.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 6:58 am 
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IJ wrote:

I know. Democrats are toxic and stupid, and Republicans are clever angels....

Very constructive, Ian.

IJ wrote:

Why can't we all get along, like those Republicans who have been masters of cheerful bipartisan cooperation for the last 15 years?

Apparently reading what I write isn't your strong suit, Ian. So let's just cut to the chase. Maybe if I post it 100 times more, you will get it.

The major flaw in all your arguments (from my point of view) is your faith in government - particularly at the federal level. So here's how we deal with the growing beast that we all find reasons to hate for whatever reason.
  • Republican Congress + Republican President = Bad (big spending)
  • Democratic Congress + Democratic President = Bad (big spending)
  • Dynamic tension in government (a.k.a. gridlock) = Good (Balanced budgets)
  • Cooperation = RARELY a good thing.
  • Government involvement in social issues (PARTICULARLY in a recession) = reason to defund government and to vote politicians out of office.

Walk a mile in the shoes of people who have lost their jobs, Ian. If you don't know what that's like, plenty of us here can give you a heads up. As they say... A recession is when your neighbor loses his job; a depression is when YOU lose your job. Big difference. And with REPORTED unemployment still hovering around 10 percent, well... Do the anger math.

And for the record... Happened to me 3 times with 3 corporate mergers. And I never collected a dime of unemployment. So naturally you know how I feel about government extending benefits to people who are unemployed, saving companies (e.g. GM) that should have been allowed to go through bankruptcy proceedings without my tax dollars, etc., etc.

The Federal government IMO should do everything it can to get the hell out of the way. Ask Japan how years and years of trying to soften a bad recession worked out for them.

Also... Ask some of us here with kids how we feel about saddling debt on them because our generation let the federal government grow faster than the GDP. Then again... Just start looking around you. California is pretty close to a financial train wreck that will happen in your lifetime. Enjoy!

- Bill


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:10 am 
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Yes, Ian, we know the whole 'no retreat, no surrender' version of liberal government. No compromise. The Tea Party absorbed Rules for Radicals to get very real results, too. And if neither side learns to bend a little, I'm afraid something's going to get broke.

But hey, making gay people feel good is what's really important, right?

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:13 pm 
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This is what happens when government isn't kept in check.

Time wrote:

California Students Protest Tuition Hike
November 17, 2010

(SAN FRANCISCO) — Police arrested and pepper-sprayed University of California students during a violent protest Wednesday over a proposed tuition increase that left three officers injured.

Thirteen people, including 10 students, were taken into custody during the demonstration at the University of California, San Francisco, said campus police Chief Pamela Roskowski.

One student was arrested for investigation of assault with a deadly weapon after a campus police officer was hit with his own baton, Roskowski said.

The officer was struck in the head after a group of protesters surrounded him in a parking garage and grabbed his baton, she said. The officer drew his gun in self-defense.


No, Virginia, this isn't the 1960s.

At this point, Ian, I am want to quote the founder of our University, author of The Declaration of Independence, and author of the Virginia Statute on Religious Freedom. But in your honor, I'll quote a Californian who grew up a liberal and died conservative. We can say he's seen all colors of the light.

"Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it."

"The ten most dangerous words in the English language are Hi, I'm from the government, and I'm here to help."

"I hope we once again have reminded people that man is not free unless government is limited. There's a clear cause and effect here that is as neat and predictable as a law of physics: As government expands, liberty contracts."

Remark made circa 1961 about socialized medicine
"Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other."

He went on and on about that. I had to stop here and save some for future discussions with my friend and California resident.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 1:33 am 
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"Very constructive, Ian."

Wow. Airball there. I am parodying your comments and thereby indicating we shouldn't be enthused for either party but for ideas of substance and good people. To that end, I've complained repeatedly about Obama.

"Apparently reading what I write isn't your strong suit, Ian. So let's just cut to the chase. Maybe if I post it 100 times more, you will get it. The major flaw in all your arguments (from my point of view) is your faith in government."

Let's back up. "All of [my] arguments"? Let's read what I posted.

1) I endorsed an article from The Economist, a publication which favors less government and more unfettered capitalism. The article supports slashing entitlements and the need to work on balancing the budget.

2) I pointed out that Mr. Reagan, conservative credentials aside, presided over an unprecedented explosion of debt in part because of tax cuts but also because of a defense buildup. He spent on military and cut his revenue at the same time (he had help, but he increased government in doing so).

3) I point out the view, held by many, that the mid term elections were largely about the economy. Incidentally, while you're impressed Slick Willie got it, this is also what Obama said about the mid terms. (Policy is another matter, obviously). And I repeated my concern that the Republicans are great at feat mongering: I mentioned how they did it with death panels recently, and here, they're killing him over his healthcare bill when observers across the pond don't see his work as that different.

4) My PS remark is about how extreme policy is not the reason for the mid term results because Obama hasn't done anything that interesting--as the editorialist noted, his very liberal base is upset with him.

At this point, you lecture me for not understanding what it's like to lose my job. Well, I can't go lose my job on purpose. Rather, I won't. That doesn't mean I haven't seen a surge of foreclosures in CA, and bunches of newly homeless people in my hospital, and people who lost their insurance suffering major health consequences. I'm not stupid or blind.

Here's the big issue: despite your snooty comment that you have to post everything 100 times for me to get it, it's YOU that completely misread my post. Because I support ending DADT, apparently, you think I'm a supporter of a huge federal government. You seem to have completely failed to read present and prior support from me about cutting social security benefits, giving people skin in the game of healthcare, cutting medicare payments with rationing, and so on. How are you getting a huge liberal Leviathan vision from me when I am actually proposing concepts (repeat 100 times so that YOU can get it? SLASH entitlements = REDUCE government) far too radically FAR from a liberal or democratic perspective that conservatives and republicans are unwilling to promote them?

There is nothing, no thing, NOTHING in any of my posts to suggest that I don't understand your opinion that less government is better or that you like a little gridlock to slow down the politicians. I fully understand you. You are, still, arguing with that fantasy Ian you've created in your own mind, the one you think endorses every policy of Obama's that you dislike. He doesn't exist. Move on. 100 times.

PS: Japan has a variety of problems not all governmental--The Economist just had a great article on THAT, too.

PPS: I have very mixed feelings over the bailouts and the GM business. I don't like seeing those expenditures occur, on the other hand, lots and lots of economists believed they were necessary to prevent more economic trouble. GM collapsing along with our whole financial structure would have led to more collapses and unemployment and we'd be in an interesting pickle. I DO feel certain some of the stimulus money was amazingly off target. But I am not prepared to say, without more experience on the matter, that all those more educated people were wrong (just like I won't dismiss a climate change consensus, while I have my doubts).

PPS: I find it totally nuts that you think the government being involved in social issues is a reason to defund and fire them. Unless you mean supporting the integration of communities or cultural knowledge with monies. That's nuts. If you're referring to the issue of DADT, that's not a social pet project. It's discrimination, and discrimination should end ASAP, regardless of how worried you are about the recession. Adding to the pool of eligible troops, retaining valuable assets in the military, and ceasing to hemorrhage money spent on trained officers being discharge for no good reason, investigations, and court battles are all very reasonable reasons TO end DADT in a wartime recession.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 1:43 am 
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"But hey, making gay people feel good is what's really important, right?"

Bill just lectured me for not understanding what it's like to lose a job. Maybe he should have lectured you for not understanding what it's like to lose your job just because you're gay, not matter how well, and closeted-ly, you may be doing your job.

If I asked the federal government to issue a statement confirming my specialness as a person, or asked for some holiday, or a subsidy, or any of that, I'd have a point. But I'm talking about equal, not special rights; I'm talking about changes in the military that reflect the modern real world we live in and work very well in other Western democracy's militaries, and changes that can improve our readiness for our multiple military commitments across the globe. Of note, this can all be accomplished without slowing down work on the economy or unemployment or the housing bubble at all. Especially since the less government solution being proffered here is to do nothing except get out of the way.

Sounds like what we really need to worry about is your fragile feelings, and the feelings of other people who don't want to work next to certain dedicated soldiers because of their prejudices and or insecurity complexes. Those feelings are the important ones, right?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 7:15 am 
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IJ wrote:
Sounds like what we really need to worry about is your fragile feelings, and the feelings of other people who don't want to work next to certain dedicated soldiers because of their prejudices and or insecurity complexes. Those feelings are the important ones, right?


It always comes back to feelings with liberals, doesn't it? I've laid out my thoughts on the matter here.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:58 am 
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IJ wrote:

I find it totally nuts that you think the government being involved in social issues is a reason to defund and fire them.

Yes, yes, yes Ian. That's exactly what I think!

:multi: :multi: :multi: :multi:

Image

When/if the government gets into social issues, that's exactly what I and other voters will do. It isn't the job of the government to tell me or others how to conduct our lives or how we should feel about our fellow (wo)man.

That was easy, wasn't it?

The superintendent of schools for Jefferson County here (around Louisville) just got his walking papers. Why? He came in 4 years ago from New England and inexplicably started a busing program a la 1970s style in an attempt to mix up the socioeconomic classes. The courts slapped his hand, and he kept doing it anyway with a slight twist on the theme to get around their ruling via a technicality. (Meanwhile, private schools in this region are booming. Ponder that dynamic for a bit.) Then the test scores for all Jefferson County schools came out, and it was obvious that he wasn't doing his job of seeing that the kids were learning their fundamentals. In a meeting of the school board last night, they pulled a Donald Trump. They told him "You're fired!"

That was easy, wasn't it?

I already told you many posts ago that the issue of DADT wasn't being gay per se, but about how fraternization affects the military espirit de corp. This is far more nuanced an issue than claiming that it's "discrimination." The military is a special place with special working conditions and special requirements. Don't have 20/20 vision? Don't expect to fly a plane. Want to have sex with your fellow soldier? Don't expect to serve. Is it messy at times? Yes... but it COULD be far messier. Does that hurt your feelings? Not my problem.

And I've already told you that I respect anyone who has actually served in the military and has experienced what you and I hope will never happen to us. I don't claim to have all the answers, and I don't know how to make it all better. But I do listen to people who have been there, and I do recognize when a social issue becomes a distraction.

I also already told you that these kinds of issues tend to take care of themselves over time - especially when the government butts out and lets people deal with it on their own.

That was easy, wasn't it?

Do you and I see eye to eye on this Ian? No.

That was easy, wasn't it?

MEANWHILE.... You have officially hijacked a thread, Ian. A better choice would have been to start a new one. We can still do that.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 1:25 pm 
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IJ wrote:

Mr. Reagan, conservative credentials aside, presided over an unprecedented explosion of debt in part because of tax cuts but also because of a defense buildup. He spent on military and cut his revenue at the same time (he had help, but he increased government in doing so).

I never voted for Reagan. At the time I was hiding away in graduate school and doing the academia thing. People vote their self interest.

That said...

You are being disingenuous. Reagan inherited one of the nastiest economic phenomena of our lifetime - stagflation. It was something only Jimmy Carter could achieve. (I voted for him...)

Reagan solved several problems and saved several generations many trillions of dollars.
  • The first thing he did was scare the sheet out of Iran. Within seconds after he was sworn into office, Iran released all the US Embassy hostages.
  • Reagan busted up OPEC via myriad ways. One was to increase domestic energy production. Another was to work the markets. The price of oil dropped. Inflation disappeared. The economy boomed.
  • The combination of Regan's focus on a free market economy (yes, LOWERING taxes), refocusing the military, and reestablishment of Democratic pride ultimately led to the collapse of the Soviet empire. He defeated The Soviet Union without firing a shot.

    And now we are actually REDUCING our nuclear arsenal, and REDUCING the cold war military fighting machine.

    More jobs.

    More federal revenue.

    Less military wpending.

    Works for me!!

It's all part of that "wise and frugal government" thing that Jefferson used to talk about. It was the walk softly, big stick thing that Teddy Roosevelt talked about. (We did put a hurt on Ghadaffi when he copped an attitude. Gotta whack a few bad guys, you know.)

Reagan was right, and i was wrong. It happens.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 4:45 pm 
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Bill Glasheen wrote:
The superintendent of schools for Jefferson County here (around Louisville) just got his walking papers. Why? He came in 4 years ago from New England and inexplicably started a busing program a la 1970s style in an attempt to mix up the socioeconomic classes. The courts slapped his hand, and he kept doing it anyway with a slight twist on the theme to get around their ruling via a technicality. (Meanwhile, private schools in this region are booming. Ponder that dynamic for a bit.) Then the test scores for all Jefferson County schools came out, and it was obvious that he wasn't doing his job of seeing that the kids were learning their fundamentals. In a meeting of the school board last night, they pulled a Donald Trump. They told him "You're fired!"

Sorry Bill, but the JCPS busing program is 70s style because that is when it started. It began on September 4, 1975 by court order to "mix up the socioeconomic classes", not 4 years ago by the current superintendent. If Berman's contract is not being renewed because of a belief he started busing, that was one heck of a successful dis-information campaign! Likewise private schools have been booming there for the past 35 years as well. Check out Hurt fades, hope survives and similar articles for more on the history of busing in Jefferson County. I was in that school system at the time busing started and remember those events very well: The heated rallies and protests (some of which I experienced first hand), my parents keeping me out of school the first week of the 1975-76 school year in protest, and we ultimately moved out of Jefferson County to Hardin County the following summer...a traumatic event for a 10-year old being forced to leave friends he'd known for as long as he could remember.

The 1975 busing plan remained in place unchanged until 2007 when the U.S. Supreme Court put restrictions on the use of race to decide school assignments, a class-action ruling aimed not just at JCPS but other busing districts around the country as well. So Superintendent Berman proposed a restructuring plan to comply with the court rulings, which the JCPS Board of Education approved by the way. That change took effect last year for the elementary schools and will take effect next year for the middle and high schools.

What's interesting is that the exact same JCPS Board of Education that voted last night to not renew Berman's contract when it expires in June, gave him a rather positive review this past July, as shown in the Courier-Journal article this morning:
Quote:
The board had issued a full evaluation of Berman in July. At the time, board members said they felt he had done a good job enhancing classroom instruction, embracing innovation and promoting policies that support student growth, but he needed to refocus his goals to ensure all students achieved their full potential.

Board members said then that it was “unacceptable to continue to have some of the lowest-performing schools in the state,” referring to the six schools that were named among the 10 lowest-performing schools in Kentucky in 2009.

They also noted that the new elementary student assignment plan “met a rocky beginning” when it was implemented at the start of the 2009-10 school year.

Why the sudden re-evaluation only four months later, when his contract renewal evaluation was not supposed to be until January?
Quote:
Since that evaluation, six more Jefferson County schools were identified as being among the lowest-performing in the state for 2010.

The district also began facing a push for a return to neighborhood schools, including a proposed state law that would allow them, after mistakes and confusion on the first day of school resulted in hundreds of students spending extra hours on buses, with some not getting home until 9 p.m.

So he is being let go because of the under-performing schools and because he did not do a good job of smoothing over public concerns about the Board-approved new school assignment plan...can we say "scapegoat"?

It's important to note that Berman came from a much smaller school district before JCPS, which is the 28th largest school district in the country, and there has always been concerns about his lack of experience. The Board certainly put emphasis last night on that being the factor for his contract not being renewed:
Quote:
“The most important duty of the (school board) is to choose and support a superintendent who will lead a successful school system that prepares all students for post-secondary education and careers,” board Chairwoman Debbie Wesslund said in a statement read during the public portion of the meeting.

“We reviewed past evaluations of the superintendent, student performance progress under his leadership, as well as management and operations issues,” she said. “The board has determined that it will not renew his contract.”

Wesslund said Berman didn't seem to have a sense of urgency when it came to student performance.

“We have been concerned with the stagnant growth in the key areas of reading and math,” she said. “As a board, we wish to refocus our energies on student achievement on every level with an emphasis on making substantial progress in student performance.”


Sounds a bit wishy-washy, and last night's meeting is not without controversy itself. Given that 4 of the 7 Board members just won re-election earlier this month (with the other 3 not being up for re-election this year), there does not seem to be a big push for leadership change among voters, so why the Board's rush? Even the Jefferson County Teachers Association expressed concern about that last night:
Quote:
Royce Whitman, vice president of the Jefferson County Teachers Association, said that while her organization had not taken a position on whether Berman's contract should be renewed, she questioned the board's timing, saying the public should have been given much more notice.

“Our organization recognizes that this is one of the most critical decisions facing not just the school board, but the entire community,” Whitman said. “A decision of this nature should only be made after ample time for community reflection, community dialogue and community input.”

Only two people addressed the board about Berman at last-night's meeting, the Teacher's Association representative quoted above and one other, and neither spoke negatively of Berman. There certainly was no public outcry expressed for his removal.

At any rate, with the current superintendent not coming back next year the Board is going to scrap its socially-invasive revised busing plan, right?
Quote:
Wesslund said the board is committed to maintaining diversity in Jefferson County Public Schools. “We appreciate Dr. Berman's commitment to preserving our value of diversity and inclusion within all schools and for his work at designing a plan to meet that goal,” she said. “We embrace this value, but recognize we need to take a deep look at this current plan and make changes, if necessary, to meet families' concerns and to shore up community support for our assignment plan.”

I guess not. But in their defense, note the comment above that it would apparently take a state law to even allow Jefferson County to return to the pre-busing neighborhood schools of 35+ years ago.

So Bill, while there might be an example somewhere in all this for the point you are trying to make, Berman's contract not being renewed does not seem to be it. Just the opposite in fact, based on the comments it seems if he had had been more effective in government's role in the social issue of quality education his contract might have been extended.

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Last edited by Glenn on Tue Nov 23, 2010 8:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:43 pm 
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Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
Bill Glasheen wrote:
  • The first thing he did was scare the sheet out of Iran. Within seconds after he was sworn into office, Iran released all the US Embassy hostages.

That he did, no question about it.
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  • Reagan busted up OPEC via myriad ways. One was to increase domestic energy production. Another was to work the markets. The price of oil dropped. Inflation disappeared. The economy boomed.

Actually what happened with OPEC follows basic economic principles. What they attempted can only work in the short-run in a global market economy, it was doomed to fail in the long-run no matter who was president of the U.S. In fact the steady decline of gas prices after their OPEC-induced peak is still used in economics courses as an example of long-run market equilibrium that can occur in the absence of government intervention. So it's a bit of a stretch to give Reagan credit for that one.
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  • The combination of Regan's focus on a free market economy (yes, LOWERING taxes), refocusing the military, and reestablishment of Democratic pride ultimately led to the collapse of the Soviet empire. He defeated The Soviet Union without firing a shot.

The Soviet Union collapsed from within and was decades in the making. The final straws that occured in the 1980s were:
  • a sharp internal decline in agricultural and industrial production
  • intensification of ethnic nationalism and separatism in a very diverse U.S.S.R.
  • increasing opposition to the war in Afghanistan
  • a steady erosion of the communist party's monopoly on power, leading to a pluralization of soviet politics
  • and the emergence of a 'commonwealth' of Slavic countries to replace the Soviet Union

Likely the collapse of the Soviet Union would also have occurred when it did no matter who was U.S. president, so another stretch to give Reagan much credit for this...although he did offer public support for the reformers.

By the way, not everywhere in the country is enamored with Reagan. Here in the conservative, Republican dominated Great Plains, "Reagan" and "Reaganomics" are dirty words. The 1980s were very harse for this region, with a Reagonomics driven restructuring of the farm industry that resulted in the "farm crisis" that hit family farms hard, a resulting surge in rural depopulation and small-community collapses, failing banks, unaffordable loan interest rates, and having to endure years of Nelson/Mellencamp Farm Aid concerts. Conservatives and Republican candidates simply do not mention Reagan at all out here.

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