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Twas the night of mid May,
The clouds were long shed,
The stars were all out,
The moon was half dead.
I’d just closed my eyes
In dark deepest dread.
I had a forewarning
Of what was ahead.
The river was foggy
So full of thick mist,
My eyes played tricks.
A hand grabbed my wrist
“What is it ” I cried
As my wrist was entwined.
“Come Hither”, it hissed,
in a voice harsh and sublime.
“In your search of pure knowledge
Things are not as you know
Shapes shift, spin around.
Truth lies buried under snow
Down becomes up, and up, is then down”
“Plant only one seed
Something evil will grow”.
Something dark is afoot,
In spirit it has stalked,
If it wins out tomorrow,
Education is debauched….
Tomorrow at Two
It will take place in Bright Light.
What I feared from my heart,
In that deepest dark night.
The 147th House would vote,
Without any debate,
On something important
To all our children’s fate.
War would soon be declared
On all those teachers who were right.
They’d all have to leave
Or stand up and fight.
A Bill with nice thoughts
Will be laid on the dock.
But in the dark wording it shields,
A most powerful shock.
Instead of making better,
It tears down all the schools,
Putting up cheap imitations
That mock all the rules.
No more shall a teacher know
What her calling required?
She could only hope like her kids,
Her scores would help get her hired.
Instead of knowledge, proven and direct.
She’d be tested on simply how well she could bet.
Praxis One and Praxis Two
Those tests of the best.
Would now be retired.
By which test could “bid” best.
Instead of old classics,
New standards were wrought,
“Romeo and Juliette” now replaced
By “How To Properly Clean a Pot”.
Twas necessary to learn prose they said.
No matter if such a bore.
It left no brain cells still standing.
Well done, Common Core.
Delaware’s education is 35th best.
That Includes the Ivy Leagues,
And all those good schools out West
“Not Good Enough”!
The gauntlet was laid
We must tear it down quickly
Our consultant’s need paid.
We must start something new!
We don’t know what it is.
But without old constraints
We can create it like jizz.
Who will do this? Good question!
That we do not know.
But when it gets done,
Arne Duncun will be here to show.
So we’ll make it mysterious.
And hard to deduce.
Make the poor teachers sweat,
Think they’re all in the caboose.
We can brainwash them now,
Do it before they begin.
They will soon work for peanuts
Because that’s all we’ll send in.
We won’t let them pass
Till their eyes all have tears in,
We’ll switch things around
Like we do on kids with Pearson….
We’ll make them earn B’s
To get into our class.
Those who don’t earn them,
Can get in with a pass.
These new tough standards
Will make bad teaching stop.
Besides we will need them
In our Race To The Top.
It says right here on line 53
“Must redo college standards”
Let us buy them new teacher ID’s
Which they can hang from their lanyards.
It says “redo”, not “raise levels” I see
Let us make up our creed
Raise them higher or lower,
Or even sideways if we need.
So let’s scrap what we have,
Make new in our image.
Trash all classic standards,
We’ll make it a corporate scrimmage.
The tests we used to have,
Were so hard and so tough,
Lets’ sub them with easy ones,
Those scores will rise with fluff.
When the kids scream about testing
We’ll know we’ve done enough.
Let’s water the standards
But tell them they’re tough.
Do it with ed- gobblyspeak.
So those dummies in House
Without even a peek,
Vote YES like a mouse….
Since what you get out
Is What you put in,
We’ll have robots for teachers
Their union will end.
But we got to be careful,
We got to act fast,
If they catch what we’re doing,
This campaign can’t last.
Strike quickly, strike fast
Strike them hard like a flogger.
Can’t let them hear the truth,
Keep them far from that “blogger”.
Oh we’ll smile, we will praise,
We’ll do what we must.
What ever it takes
To turn those standards to dust.
Make Teachers in our image?
Yes, that’s what we’ll do.
We’ll count ourselves lucky
If they can count up to two.
The children? Don’t worry,
They’ll be fine as we speak.
We’ll teach them with tests,
So their knowledge will peak.
Then when it does,
We’ll know that we have won.
Common Core is in place.
Our work is now done.
Our friends in this Biz
Will now pay for our way.
When we meet our next challenger
Thinking he has something to say.
The Battle is ending
The war’s almost won.
We just need some dumb asses
To vote in S.B 51…..”
The specter was silent
It paused for a while
“Who are you? I said
I saw a faint smile.
It turned slowly towards me
And gave me a stare.
I could feel the electricity
From the bottom of each hair.
“Tell me” I inquired,
just one more time.
But the vision was fading
Into many fine lines
All that was left were the eyes,
And they gave me a shiver
It then grew transparent,
It was the Christina river.
So my friends, if you’re up,
If you read this in the morn.
It wasn’t a dream,
You must sound off your horn.
You must call down to Dover,
Let them know how you feel.
Hell copy and paste this.
Let them know this is for real.
We are being bamboozled
By clever and wit.
Our children won’t learn
Anything, not one little bit.
Something you can’t test.
Requires a human you respect
Pushing to do your best.
We are moving away,
From what has worked well.
We are tearing down Rome
And burning it to hell.
This bill is too rash
Though it sounds pretty good.
It needs not to be rushed,
But debated as it should.
If anything is to change
It depends now on all of you.
Without your quick input,
Like in the Senate, it will pass too.
It’s tearing down what is good
And replacing it with “what-ever”
Gotta be bad for the kids,
No matter hard they endeavor.
This bill needs work.
Though it’s ideas are nice.
It will mess things up royally
Without changes concise.
A simple amendment
Is all it would take.
To undo all the damage
And terrible things soon at stake.
A little snip of a scissors will do
Component V and Evaluations…
Just separate the two.
Because the way this is written
If you teach and you fail.
It’s the blacks and the poor,
Who lose and wind up in jail.
Their great teachers got fired,
Because they worked in the city.
The teachers in rich schools.
Got good scores, just sitting pretty.
This is the damage this Bill will soon do.
For under this plan
If your kids don’t test well,
Your career is so through
Doesn’t matter if their poor,
Or if their homes are all broken.
When it comes down to corporate,
All excuses are token
“it’s your fault” they’ll say
“It can’t be the test.
You’re lazy and useless
You didn’t do your best”.
Meanwhile in Newark,
Where teaching’s a breeze.
Just wave a magic wand,
And there is no pay-freeze.
Scores roll in higher
Because the curriculum is dumbed down.
Kids do all the work.
You smile looking down.
So reader, what do you think…
As is, what will this bill do?
If you were a new teacher,
if it was you starting anew.
Would you go to the city?
Where opportunity lies?
Teach out your heart?
And stifle your cries?
Or would you choose
The easy way out.
A lifelong career
With no second doubt.
It is so important
That this bill get changed
Otherwise our system
Will split from the strain.
Decouple the evaluations
From component Five.
Let’s do what we can
To keep education alive.
This bill needs work
On quite a few levels
That will only happen,
If this vote gets disheveled.
If you love your kids,
And kids of all ages,
Make them retract their pledges.
They don’t know what’s in this bill.
Because they were told it’s ok.
Only the parents who vote
Can still save the day.
This is you I’m telling
Just so you know.
You need to go here,
And call all that you know.
Send them this poem,
It will get their attention,
Then give them the pitch,
Tell them they’ll go to detention.
What they’re about to do,
Is destroy our great state.
By Dismantling educational.quality
And by then it is too late.
This bill is on rush,
That i can tell you.
Vacation is coming.
But hopefully they’ll hear you.
Say “This Bill Cannot Pass”
Exactly as it is written.
“Change it, change it now
Before you get smitten”.
I hope these few words
Don’t fall on deaf ears.
I don’t want to see children
Through veils of thick tears….
It is you, it is me,
Who must carry this fight.
It is we who are parents.
We have the most right!.
Eli Broad — the CPA-trained-billionaire-businessman-turned-public-education-reformer — informed Diane Ravitch, a distinguished education expert, about what needs to be done to education in America. . According to Ravitch, “We talked about school reform for an hour or more, and he told me that what was needed to fix the schools was not all that complicated: A tough manager surrounded by smart graduates of business schools and law schools.”
According to Slate quoting Vanity Fair, Eli Broad boasted back in 2006 that he “plans to virtually take over the Delaware school system in 2007, pending approval from that state’s legislature.” He backed the winning slate of candidates for the local board of education in 1999 and helped hire the superintendent.
Eli Broad trains Superintendents. Christina School District has been the unfortunate beneficiary of his largess. Joe Wise, followed by Lillian Lowery, followed by Marcia Lyles, all are from Eli’s School of Superintendencies….Dr. Joe Wise was selected as a Broad Fellow by Eli Broad Institute for School Boards (2005), was appointed to the Eli Broad Urban Superintendents Academy as a Fellow (2003), and serves on the Broad Academy’s adjunct faculty and advisory committee. Although Broad Superintendents come in highly qualified, they often leave disgracefully. Joe Wise, may have been one of the first. Recently, across this nation many Broad Superintendents have been let go. All trained by the Broad Superintendents Academy: Maria Goodloe-Johnson (class of 2003) of the Seattle school district, LaVonne Sheffield (class of 2002) of the Rockford, Illinois school district, and Jean-Claude Brizard (class of 2008) of the Rochester New York school district. Brizard resigned to take the job as CEO of Chicago schools, but his superintendency in Rochester had been mired in controversy. Another Broad-trained Superintendent recently announced his resignation: Tom Brady (class of 2004) of Providence, Rhode Island, as well as these others from before: Arnold “Woody” Carter (class or 2002), formerly of the Capistrano Unified School District; Thandiwee Peebles,( class of 2002), formerly of the Minneapolis Public School District; and John Q. Porter (class of 2006), formerly of the Oklahoma City Public School District.
Ms. Lillian Lowery (class of 2004), Wise's replacement after supposedly cleaning up Joe Wise's disaster, was put in charge of all Delaware's schools, and now, is in charge of Maryland's. Broad's influence has touched every Delaware Student… and is about to touch all those of Maryland.
Our current head of the Department of Education, Mark Murphy, hails from a group NLNS funded by Eli Broad
If this was a good thing, it would be good.
So, what is the Broad influence?
Here is one take. It is one of the three influencers of education. Along with the Gates Foundation and the Walton's, it exerts a powerful influence, good or bad. It calls itself a venture philanthropy, as in venture capitalist. Meaning it invests in philanthropy expecting to yield a return on its investment. As an example, it can fund a study that says computers will help inner city kids learn, then sell those recommended computers to that school district.
Here is how it infiltrates a school district. Christina School District to be exact…
The Broad Foundation plants one of its elements in a school district, it is then highly likely they will plant another one along with it, so their influence is maximized.
For instance, an element might be:
- The presence of a Broad-trained superintendent
- The placement of Broad Residents into important central office positions
- An "invitation" to participate in a program spawned by the Foundation (such as CRSS's Reform Governance in Action program)
- Offering to provide the district with a free "Performance Management Diagnostic and Planning" experience
The Broad Foundation likes to infiltrate its targets on multiple levels so it can manipulate a wider field and cause the greatest amount of disruption. Venture edu-philanthropists like Gates and Broad proudly call this invasive and destabilizing strategy “investing in a disruptive force.” To these billionaires and their henchmen, causing massive disruption in communities across the nation is not a big deal.
The Broad Foundation has spent nearly $400 million on its mission of “transforming urban K-12 public education through better governance, management, labor relations and competition.”
That sounds nice. So let us look closer….
The signature effort of the Broad Foundation is its investment in its training programs…The Broad Superintendents Academy runs a training program held during six weekends over ten months, after which graduates are placed in large districts as superintendents. Those accepted into the program (“Broad Fellows”) are not required to have a background in-education; many come instead from careers in the military, business, or government. Tuition and travel expenses for participants are paid for by the Broad Center, which also sometimes covers a share of the graduates’ salaries when they are appointed into district leadership positions. The foundation’s website boasts that 43 percent of all large urban superintendent openings were filled by Broad Academy graduates in 2009.
The Broad Superintendents Academy’s weekend training course provides an “alternative” certification process which has come to supplant or override the typical regulations in many states that require that individuals have years of experience as a teacher and principal before being installed as a school district superintendents….
The Broad Residency in Urban Education is a two-year program, during which individuals with MBAs, JDs, etc. in the early stages of their careers are placed in high-level managerial positions in school districts, charter management organizations, or state and federal departments of education. The Broad Center subsidizes approximately 33 percent of each Resident’s salary.
The Broad Foundation founded the New York City Leadership Academy, which trains individuals to serve as principals in the city public schools, several of whose graduates have been accused of financial misconduct, as well as arbitrary and dictatorial treatment of teachers, students and parents. This was recently featured by Delaware’s WDDE reporting on Reshid Walker who is training in Cape Henelopen under the Delaware Leadership Project. DLP is an alternate certification program that this year is preparing six candidates to work as principals or assistant principals at public schools serving high-risk students in Delaware. Alternate Certification means it sidesteps requirements that a principal has to have stepped foot inside a school before. Through four days a week of on-the-job training, and no certification from an accredited college or university, he will soon be in command of your child’s education.
The Broad Institute for School Boards provides three training programs for elected school board members and non-Broad-trained superintendents conducted in partnership with the Center for Reform of School Systems (CRSS). The Institute trains new board members at a one-week summer residential setting…The Broad Foundation underwrites 80 percent of all program costs through a grant to CRSS.
The Broad Foundation also supports a broad range of pro-charter school advocacy groups, as well as alternative training programs for non-educators who want to work as teachers and principals (Teach for America, New Leaders for New Schools). In addition, the foundation offers free diagnostic “audits” to school districts, along with recommendations aligned with its policy preferences. It produces a number of guides and toolkits for school districts, including a “School Closure Guide,” based on the experiences of Broad-trained administrators involved in closing schools in Boston, Charleston, Chicago, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Miami-Dade County, Oakland, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, and Seattle…..
Closing public schools to open opportunities for charters seems to be it’s prime directive. Although not officially enshrined as such, it does seem to be the consistent pattern of each of its graduates.
The foundation provided start-up funding for Parent Revolution (formerly the Los Angeles Parent Union), the group which developed the “Parent Trigger” legislation, designed to encourage the conversion of public schools to charter schools. Broad has also has given large amounts of money to Education Reform Now, a pro-charter school advocacy organization…
Eli Broad has said he “expects to be a major contributor” to Students First, former D.C. Chancellor Michelle Rhee’s organization that advocates for the expansion of charters, vouchers, and an end to seniority protections for teachers. The pro-Rhee biography, The Bee Eater, was subsidized by the Broad Foundation as is mentioned on the book jacket.
Of course, there are campaign contributions (you will need to type in Broad, Eli) to facilitate the corporatizing of education… A quick look certifies that his coverage is a who’s who across party lines in Congress. Obviously there will be support for Charters streaming down from the top lines of government.
Ok, so how does all of this affect Delaware’s public school’s families?….
One of the tenets of his philosophy taught to his graduates, is to produce system change by “investing in a disruptive force.” Continual reorganizations, firings of staff, and experimentation to create chaos or “churn” is believed to be productive and beneficial, as it weakens the ability of communities to resist change.
A hallmark of the Broad-style leadership is closing existing schools rather than attempting to improve them, increasing class size, opening charter schools, imposing high-stakes test-based accountability systems on teachers and students, and implementing of pay for performance schemes. The brusque and often punitive management style of Broad-trained leaders has frequently alienated parents and teachers and sparked protests. A long laundry list of Broad Supertendants run out of town can be found here, near the bottom. But you can get an idea of what to expect, from just this one: Robert Bobb (class of 2005), the Emergency Financial Manager of the Detroit Public Schools, recently sent layoff notices to every one of the district’s 5,466 salaried employees, including all its teachers, and said that nearly a third of the district’s schools would be closed or turned over to private charter operators. At a recent town hall which Bobb had called so he could go over his plan, angry students, parents, and teachers drove him from the meeting. He was escorted out by his six bodyguards….
Disruption and chaos indeed…..
Delaware is fortunate to have a large parenting network of watch dogs who communicate well with legislators. Whereas the Christina District has had a rough go with Broad graduates, the rest of the state has so far been unscathed…..
Without the oversight being provided by parents and teachers watchdog organizations, the fate of Delaware’s students might be that of Philadelphia, Chicago, or Detroit.
if you are a parent or know one, you probably feel this way as well. Parents Across America considers Broad’s influence to be inherently undemocratic, as it disenfranchises parents and other stakeholders in an effort to privatize our public schools and imposes corporate-style policies without our consent. We strongly oppose allowing our nation’s education policy to be driven by billionaires who have no education expertise, who do not send their own children to public schools, and whose particular biases and policy preferences are damaging our children’s ability to receive a quality education.
In fact, this entire philosophy of forcing change upon children, strikes every parent as coming from those types of people we all run across, … who hate children…. “Someone smack that kid who’s crying.”
Amen And Amen.
On this link, there is a test question that hit the schools in New York State and the questions regarding that story.
Simply put, if you don’t take the time to do this test, ( 5 minutes) you should not have any say in education.
Once you see this, you cannot have any qualms as to why our children are failing….
- It is not the teachers.
- It is not the principals.
- It is not the school boards.
- It is the test.
Btw, what score did you get?
Why is this so?
Well let’s examine what happens when a state or a school district fails? Angry parents call their legislators. Legislators demand more tests. More tests cost more money. Legislators demand and get more money to make more tests to help analyze and to study the problem.
Our question is: who gets rich?
- A. The Governor
- B. Mark Murphy (Delaware Head of Department of Education)
- C. Principal Skinner (on The Simpsons and all like him)
- D. The Testing organization.
What score did you get?
If every student passed the first time with flying colors, … hmmm. I wonder how many tests there would be then? Hmmmm.
Found this on one of Pandora’s favorite sites and just for fun thought I’d race to get it up first……
Not sure if all of you know, (the trailer is out) but Joe Biden appears on Parks and Recreation very soon.
However, I remember his surprise showing on a cameo once before, and so did Jesebel…. (FF / cameo appears at 8:00)
Anyways, it looks like I beat her to posting it… lol… Time stamp 12:34
This is post number 2000.
The only real significance is it is 150 posts more than where Tommywonk stopped exactly one year and fifteen days ago…
If some future historian looks back, I can only guess they may kindly make some note of the quality of thought that underlies these efforts, but my guess, is no one will ever notice…
Irregardless, as long as the urge to put thoughts down for others continues, we will go on. As usual, with no goal, no direction, and no ulterior motive. Probably upon reflection, my biggest surprise, right here, right now … is that I still enjoy it so much, and can’t wait to jot my thoughts down, click the button, and send them off to where ever cyberspace and the vast internet ocean, lets them drift….
For each of you who have become regular over the years, … thank you friend…
I just couldn’t help but notice he supports almost every Johnson. (Even ones with Swiss spellings… Johansen ….)
Courtesy of Night Swim
Marriage is between a man and a woman. It is natural law. Natural law is the organic basis of the Declaration and the foundation of our Constitution. You can use whatever basis you want to justify a law. The only question is does the law itself meet constitutional muster.
I don’t care if a ‘talking flower’ tells you to pass a law, if the law turns out to be constitutional, common sense, and the majority believe it to be good policy, there is no reason to oppose it. I may want to check your medication, but I won’t oppose the law. (Written by Delaware’s Republican Emeritus: David Anderson)
Obviously Christine O’Donnell is the talking flower to which David is referencing. He seems to be saying that despite it being her that initiates the anti gay law that is to come about soon, if the anti gay law gets offered even by her, because he deems it to be a Natural Law, it will be passed and the majority of people will rejoice that being anti gay now has legal sanction.
Ok, I understand where he’s coming from, and could support his premise on Natural Law.. For example, if we were talking about the restriction of murder, I would think his argument would apply… Murder is not specifically mentioned in the Constitution. However, the killing of another for sport or pleasure would violate some type of Natural Law, and therefore, even though it is not mentioned in the Constitution, the fact that it is not mentioned in the Constitution, cannot be used to make it legal to murder for sport and pleasure…
Where he errs … is in his interpretation of Natural Law. What is natural law? One must take the root, the word nature and look there for answers… He states that natural law is between a man and a women. I’m sorry, but Homo sapians is the only species that marries. Single cells divide. They procreate without sex. They are natural, Therefore cloning, which is the procreation without sex, shares enough similarity to be natural too. Therefore Natural Law, demands that cloning be endorsed by the Constitution.
Then there is same sex relationships, often involving ejaculation. In the plant kingdom, there are self fertilizing plants that propagate their single line of genes. They, of the same gender actually have the equivalent of sex, they share their pollen. They are natural. Therefore by Natural Law, the human equivalent, two females in proximity, can also share the equivalent of sex. Since our Constitution is run by Natural Law, there is no reason to refute it.. Therefore Natural Law, demands that two females having sex, be endorsed by the Constitution.
Recently I saw the funniest thing. A little dog and a big dog. The little dog had his paws on the big dogs head and was just humping away on the big dogs head while the big dog was giving the little dog the sniff over.. Both were males.. and both were wagging their tales, so obviously they both enjoyed it. since neither of them knew how to read, it would be a safe bet to say their action was sanctioned by Natural Law. They were doing what nature intended.. especially when they aren’t making babies. Since two males having fun sex is in nature, it is Natural Law that they be enabled to, and therefore…. The Constitution, being founded on Natural Law, thereby fully endorses the mutual enjoyment of sex between the same gender.
Anyone who says otherwise is an activist judge.
Marriage, however is not found in the natural world. I can only think of one species, owls, that mate for life.. there may be others, but their numbers are dwarfed by the numbers of species that have random sex. In fact, random sex seems to have the upper hand in Natural Law, much more than marriage.
In fact, if you use Natural Law as the basis for the Constitution, then, you must accept the argument that cloning and homosexuality have far more traction with the Constitution than does the institution of marriage. In fact, according to Natural Law, the argument of marriage being sanctioned under the Constitution is rather weak…
So we come down to this point. Banning gay sex, even banning gay marriage, has nothing to do with Natural Law. It it your law. There is nothing natural about it. It is simply put,. your law that you are imposing upon the rest of us..
One would think that as more and more Americans look at this issue each time you bring it up, and abandon your party and support instead, the right of every American to pursue sexual happiness in their own way, even getting married, , that the idea would begin to occur to you and your shrinking party, that perhaps you are wrong.
Perhaps it is not natural to limit marriage to a combination that one has to search nature high and low, even to find one example of it.. Quite possibly you are wrong on this. Natural Law would certainly imply it.
During WWII, Gen. Eisenhower wanted to weed his military of homosexuals. He was all set to do so until his administrative right hand, said, “uh.. excuse me Dwight, I’m homosexual.” And that was the end of that. Unlike today’s Republicans, Eisenhower was a wise man.
So Dave, if you want to keep losing more elections, keep touting marriage as Natural Law. We will pound your party into smithereens… as we have ever since your party began this nonsense in ‘06…
Courtesy of Department of Defense
“By the first light of the third day, look to the East!”
Everyone knows that living starts on the weekend… That makes Monday the third day… It is my sincere hope to return this feature back to its original time-slot so those starting their week, have something worthy to follow… Of course that leaves “Around the Horn” to synopsize on Friday, so between the two of us, we have full weekly coverage….
I apologize to Deldem of Delaware Liberal if this first return edition bashes up against his on vacation version of what went down this week…
So what happened this weekend?
Shirley opens with a story of what being an American is all about. The teary eye part made me proud that America still recognizes its heroes, and goes out of their way to make sure they know it… All of us can learn a lesson from this post…. When was the last time you went out of your way to make a member of our armed services feel welcomed?
She carries another idea that I will be stealing shortly.. It’s from down under. and it certainly is worthy of the read, if you haven’t caught it earlier…. it’s just another way of self expression….
Aside from seven videos of varying topics, one an hour and twenty-six minutes long, and four quotes, the memorable posts on Delaware Liberals this weekend are the following… (We only covered the full first two pages, lol)… Their best was this one, The Morning After….. which describes the cuts to the state budget… “The Morning After” in this case does not refer to contraception, but is instead, related to the budgetary announcement made by Jack Markell on Thursday…. It begins with….
March 19, 2009 will forever be remembered as the date that Delaware’s Gilded Age officially ended. An age that was literally ‘built on a house of (credit) cards’ is no more.
The interesting point is that ultimately, it is the responsibility of the wealthy to carry the weight of the rest of us. Pandora follows the same theme with “What’s In The Water At CNBC”: apparently someone argued on that show that Wall Street couldn’t be run by anyone making under $250,000…… the unsaid premise is that the wealthy, who are overpaid for their results, need to make sacrifices so those making less, do not have to…
However the most uplifting piece of the entire weekend, was on this blog and had nothing to do with the economy… or the wealthy… It is about race, and in a spirited fashion on the weekend that Battlestar Galactica ended its 6 year run, Cassandra puts this vignette forward… I’m impressed she saw it, since she admits she doesn’t watch the best show on television this decade. Next to Obama’s Philadelphia campaign speech on the reality of “race”, this is as good as it gets….
This blog has taken on new life with the economic crises swirling around us… In an amazing piece, Steve Newton (in real time) breaks down the implication of Markell’s budget cuts and other attempts to balance the budget, and illustrates how those cuts will affect our employees… I can proudly say, it as good, or better than that other Delaware blogger who is prone to such analysis…… Again the same theme comes out…..
But the reality doesn’t work that way. If you eliminate one unnecessary management position making $120K, then you have saved enough money to keep thirty employees at the $40K and below level from having to take a hit.
Again the message is simple: Cut off the top to save those on the bottom, holding everything up… The shocking truth of what happens when citizens are preoccupied with other matters than their government, showed up in this comment…. “a vacant position in my agency, one that had been vacant for 1 1/2 years got filled by someone on Minner’s staff. Let me reiterate. WE DID WITHOUT THIS POSITION FOR 1 1/2 YEARS. AND NOW WE FILL IT? Luckily it is not a merit position, so it’s possible that the position gets vacated anyhow. But this is one of those 120k positions. “
Again the message: cut the top to save the bottom….
Delaware Politics begins with their take on Markell’s budget… One noticeable trend has been the life recently pumped back into conservative blogs. I have not yet commented upon it, but…. they were pretty shoddy all election season and up until the inauguration…. But with the Democrats now in the driver’s seats, the conversation among the back seat drivers, has again become interesting to listen to… At least one can feel they are getting pumped up, perhaps stealing the energy leaking away from those liberal blogs, who are now getting tired, and starting to wind down in their ardor and intensity…
Dave Burris does his take on Markell’s budget… Most notably he notices the lack of cuts in services…
“But when the rubber hit the road, not only did they fail to cut an agency, they didn’t cut ANYTHING. That is a massive failure to lead. We got such a large deficit (I don’t believe the numbers, but maybe you do) because we grew our government at a rate of 2.5 times inflation during the Queen Worthless administration. If we don’t address that, we will continue to have this problem as more and more of the economy is eaten up by the government.”
I noticed there was no mention that the failure of the Bush economy has drastically reduced ALL sources of revenue pouring into state coffers on which our government used to thrive during the last 8 years… But he does agree with Markell on across the board cuts: “I agree with the administration that cutting pay across-the-board is better than across-the-board layoffs in this environment, because layoffs would cost the state unemployment money,”
Interestingly, being conservative in a time of crises, leads to some silly conclusions… This one for example: “the gain from the Gross Receipts Tax increase is a pittance compared to what the state would get if they would just get out of the way and let these small business owners grow the economy”. Really? Currently we have 7.5 % unemployed, and our largest employer, the state, is taking an 8% across the board pay cut? And paying more for medical? And more in taxes? Where is all that money going to come from to allow these small businesses to grow the economy? You can give them a zero tax rate, but it no one spends in their business, they don’t pay taxes anyway… Nope, you need to make people spend, before any type of business aid makes sense…. Small businesses aren’t going to grow… They are just trying to hang on and stay solvent! Screw growth!!!!! lol.
In another attempt at silliness the lovely Marie Evans is proposing the Greenville Casino… The land is available… Three casinos, she points out in a state 96 miles long, with some creative placing, puts one every 16 miles…( as I said: creative placing… lol).. Unfortunately since Greenville is too close to the northern edge, were one to go in up there, her 16 mile theory would be impossible…
Likewise the Special Olympians apology to our and their president, does crack a faint smile….
And I’m outraged, outraged that there is no mention of the Democratic Party in each of these instances.
And the DSEA? They also are outraged, outraged that while arguing for higher taxes on all other people, under Markell’s budget…. THEY WILL HAVE TO PAY HIGHER TAXES TOO… OUTRAGEOUS!!! lol….
Welcome back to the fight guys!
Dana carries the AFSCME demostration over the cutbacks… They want the rainy day fund tapped out so they have their jobs… The only question, besides that is must be repayed every year., is that once spent, then what gets done next year…
Nancy covers the controversy over whether pensions should be capped at higher rates, than those just years away from retirement….
Mike Matthews has a job interview today… GOOD LUCK from all of Delaware’s Blogosphere…
The same theme brought to you by Markell’s budget cuts appears in Byron Short is Wrong (IMO)
In short, the most disappointing thing about Gov. Markell’s proposal is he’s shifting too much burden on the poor, lower-middle class and, in reality, isn’t asking much of those state employees (cabinet heads, directors, etc.) who could stand a tightening of the belt. Or a complete axing of their positions.
Knock something off the top, to save the foundations supporting the bottom…. Where have I heard that before?…
Already two proposals are in state legislature that work to mitigate the effects of the cuts… One doesn’t allow retirees to have the lower wages be used as a determinant of their pension size, and the other, gives two state employee’s married to each other, less cuts than two single state employees sharing an apartment, would get… These bring up questions of fairness.. One can sense in both these proposals that these employees are “entitled” to earning more money.. It’s a valid point.. They are lucky to have jobs… and if they get a “by” or a “pass”, who is it then who gets hit with the charge for allowing them not to carry the load everyone else is being dealt… If they really wanted to have done something constructive… they could have worked for Kerry…. But nooooo, they didn’t.. and now they are paying the price…. We all are.
However, a job is better than no job at all and this is not meant to be an insult! I didn’t enjoy my pay cut and the traumatic impact. Unfortunately Governor Markell did the right thing. Those at the top of the pay scale will survive better than those at the bottom!
Where have we heard that sentiment before? I don’t know… but it sounds vaguely familiar…
And some wise words to AFSCME union wannabe’s who wish to increase their power within their organization… “Suck it up and be thankful you still have a job because others will be glad to take it.”
Mike Mahaffie went to the last of the Markell meetings before this budget proposal came out… What is interesting is how the theoretical side of the equation seems dreamlike when compared to the reality all all the posts following the Thursday budgetary announcement… But although Markell was unable to attend due to the death of his father, Mahaffie does capture many of the sentiments “flickering” around the room…. One that stands out, was this gem:
As things wrapped up, Senator Simpson and Representative Carey, both Republicans, made a point of praising Governor Markell, a Democrat, for his bipartisan approach to the budget problem and openness to working together. They pointed out that Sec. Kee is one of several republicans in the Markell cabinet.
“On my count… all hands pull on the ropes…. Heave!”
One of those heaving is Brian from the Mourning Constitution. He tackles sports betting from the revenue side, and argues income beats job cuts….. Bringing money into the state, by making us the Vegas on the east coast, could keep some people some jobs…
As for the current vacancies at the Delaware DOC – just a month ago at a meeting of the Corrections hearing before the Joint Finance Committee, there were 33 vacancies in order to assure MINIMUM staffing – while in actuality there are over 330 vacancies that need to be filled to assure smooth, safe, and efficient operation of Delaware’s prisons.
Redwaterlily shows us what is occurring across the state simultaneously. Everyone is questioning their department, and wondering how they can afford any more cutbacks… Every department has needs… Every department has hard working employees who are not making the money they deserve… But as El Somnambulo points out above, by law,any extra money is spent in one sector, must be cut from another one…. The total amount is to remain the same… So each time one says they must keep their department open…. They are dooming another department somewhere in the State of Delaware, to double the amount of cuts….
Although quite prolific lately, this was a quiet weekend for the Colassus of Rhody… amounting to this list of what was NOT said by Obama on Jay Leno’s show….
Tommwonk’s weekend contribution deals with: Jack Markell’s budget…. Tommy focuses on how this budget will be perceived by the staff budget meetings…
We are open to discuss other ideas to meet our financial challenges, and in fact encourage your ideas, because the $750M [deficit] we face now may be our best-case scenario, if the fundamentals of the national economy do not improve.
Our best case scenario.. In this sobering piece,
The actual budget proposal made by Markell is here…
Looking at our problems…. it is easy to get overwhelmed.. sometimes it helps to realize through out history greater problems have befallen greater numbers of human beings…. But somehow we muddled through… We will muddle throughout this time, ….
Remember how this opened? It was a celebration of an American hero… Like them, today we need our wealthy to contribute more to the nation that gave them opportunity. Today we need our wealthy stepping up and heeding the call of their country. Like our young boys who are on foreign soil, they too must suffer the sacrifice, and without grumbling, willingly pay more to the state to cover those expenses incurred assisting those less fortunate than themselves…