I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

All Hail the Czar!

Czar Duncan will hear your grievance now:
But Rep. John Kline (R-Minn.), chairman of the House Education & the Workforce Committee, denounced the waivers as a “dangerous precedent” and said he “simply cannot support a process that grants the secretary of education sweeping authority to handpick winners and losers.”  
In February 2009, soon after the stimulus was signed into law, Duncan said he wasn’t interested in power — but in what he could do with power. “There’s going to be this extraordinary influx of resources,” he told The New York Times. “So people say, ‘You’re going to be the most powerful secretary ever,’ but I have no interest in that. Power has never motivated me. What I love is opportunity, and this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do something special, to drive change, to make our schools better.” 
Still, it’s tough to ignore the power he’s amassed

Nice to see Republicans doing something useful for once. Kline is right: Obama and Duncan have granted themselves a huge helping of power over education, and they are using it to both usurp local control and push "reforms" that have no evidence of working:
“The focus on choice and accountability puts Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and Obama all in the same mode” on education, Ravitch said. All four administrations built education policy around the notion that parents and students are consumers, “but there’s no evidence that works.”
“If you like federal control of education,” Ravitch added of Duncan, “he’s your man.”
Obama is about a thousand times better than the guy who came before him, but he's still a corporatist. And his and Duncan's prescriptions for schools have no evidence to back them up. On education, there really is very little difference between this crew and the Republicans who preceded them. If the intransigence of today's Republican's has any value, it's in putting the breaks on Duncan's doomed-to-fail plans.


Anonymous said...

"Obama is about a thousand times better than the guy who came before him, but he's still a corporatist."

1000x, eh? Either that's some serious hyperbole, or you know something that the rest of us don't. What makes Obama 1000x better? "Green" initiatives? Obama is every bit the blood thirsty war monger that GWB was, with the main difference being that at least GWB didn't pretend to be otherwise, selling some "Hope and Change" snake oil.

I'm still waiting for Democrats who were so staunchly anti-Bush in 2008 to drop the party allegiance nonsense that has a stranglehold on our country and realize that our president today is "George W. Obama". After all, if he sold us out on education, how far fetched is it to imagine and accept that he has done so elsewhere?

Duke said...

Well, here's a difference: Obama didn't send us into a war of choice that killed over 4 thousand Americas, destroyed the lives of thousands more, and killed over 100,000 Iraqi civilians.

Obama didn't sit back and watch an entire American city be destroyed on his watch while he shared a birthday cake with John McCain.

Obama didn't saddle us with a corporatist Chief Justice for lord knows how many years.

Just a few differences. No biggie...