Saturday, January 24, 2009

High School -- 1958 VS 2008

Jim received this from his friend who is heading up...if I remember correctly research and development at Apple Computers. Yep all those neat things you MAC junkies love he is part of that.

The following is funny, but sad too because there is a lot of truth to it as well.


Scenario 1:
Jack goes quail hunting before school and then pulls into the school parking lot with his shotgun in his truck's gun rack.
1958 - Vice Principal comes over, looks at Jack's shotgun, goes to his car and gets his shotgun to show Jack.
2008 - School goes into lock down, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors called in for traumatized students and teachers.

Scenario 2:
Johnny and Mark get into a fist fight after school.
1958 - Crowd gathers. Mark wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands and end up buddies.
2008 - Police called and SWAT team arrives -- they arrest both Johnny and Mark. They are both charged with assault and both expelled even though Johnny started it.

Scenario 3:
Jeffrey will not be still in class, he disrupts other students.
1958 - Jeffrey sent to the Principal's office and given a good paddling by the Principal. He then returns to class, sits still and does not disrupt class again.
2008 - Jeffrey is given huge doses of Ritalin. He becomes a zombie. He is then tested for ADD. The school gets extra money from the state because Jeffrey has a disability.

Scenario 4:
Billy breaks a window in his neighbor's car and his Dad gives him a whipping with his belt.
1958 - Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college and becomes a successful businessman.
2008 - Billy's dad is arrested for child abuse. Billy is removed to foster care and joins a gang. The state psychologist is told by Billy's sister that she remembers being abused herself and their dad goes to prison. Billy's mom has an affair with the psychologist.

Scenario 5:
Mark gets a headache and takes some aspirin to school.
1958 - Mark shares his aspirin with the Principal out on the smoking dock.
2008 - The police are called and Mark is expelled from school for drug violations. His car is then searched for drugs and weapons.

Scenario 6:
Pedro fails high school English.
1958 - Pedro goes to summer school, passes English and goes to college.
2008 - Pedro's cause is taken up by state. Newspaper articles appear nationally explaining that teaching English as a requirement for graduation is racist. ACLU files class action lawsuit against the state school system and Pedro's English teacher. English is then banned from core curriculum. Pedro is given his diploma anyway but ends up mowing lawns for a living because he cannot speak English.

Scenario 7:
Johnny takes apart leftover firecrackers from the Fourth of July, puts them in a model airplane paint bottle and blows up a red ant bed.
1958 - Ants die.
2008 - ATF, Homeland Security and the FBI are all called. Johnny is charged with domestic terrorism. The FBI investigates his parents -- and all siblings are removed from their home and all computers are confiscated. Johnny's dad is placed on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly again.

Scenario 8:
Johnny falls while running during recess and scrapes his knee. He is found crying by his teacher, Mary. Mary hugs him to comfort him.
1958 - In a short time, Johnny feels better and goes on playing.
2008 - Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She faces 3 years in State Prison. Johnny undergoes 5 years of therapy.

Friday, January 23, 2009

CNHT Report - Superintendent apologizes for e-mail sent to parents

When I saw this story on CNHT I had to nab it. Unfortunately this is not an uncommon occurrence; with so much access to parents(voters)via backpacks and the schools computer database teachers and educrats often use this to get communities to pass warrants and tax warrants from which they directly benefit. Parents should be calling educrats out on this unethical behavior.


Superintendent apologizes for e-mail sent to parents

By CNHT | January 21, 2009

January 21, 2009
Goffstown News

A Goffstown School District e-mail notice about a meeting backfired when some residents accused the administration of political campaigning on behalf of the School Board.

Superintendent of Schools Stacy Buckley recently apologized for the e-mail, which she sent to parents asking them to show up to a Budget Committee hearing and support the proposed school budget.

The e-mail was sent out Jan. 9, in advance of a hearing on Jan. 13. In the e-mail, Buckley notified parents of the date and location, then asked them to back the School Board’s budget.

“I would encourage all Goffstown residents to attend this hearing to provide support for the School Board’s recommended budget,” Buckley wrote.

At the time, the Budget Committee was recommending a $561,379 cut to the school budget. The e-mail was sent out to a list used to notify parents of school closings, their children’s grades and to make other routine announcements.

More than 80 percent of parents in Goffstown are on the e-mail list, according to School Board Chairman Keith Allard.

At least one parent and one Budget Committee member, Bill Gordon, have protested the email as a misuse of school district resources for political purposes.

“It wouldn’t be so bad if they said just this, ‘There’s a meeting. You may want to attend. This is what it’s about,’” said Bill Wynne, the parent. “Once they said support the budget, the proposed budget of the School Board, that steps over the line.”

Wynne called Buckley and asked her to resign over the matter. She refused. But, at the Jan. 19 meeting of the School Board, she did apologize.

“I sincerely apologize to the public for this e-mail,” Buckley said. “I in no way intended to create mistrust with the public. Please know that I understand the difficulties this has created for some people and I apologize for that. I appreciate the public’s understanding and concerns for the appropriate use of all district resources and information. Please know that in the future you can be certain that this will not happen again.”

Allard also apologized to the public. He said he and Buckley had spoken about issuing a message to parents about the budget hearing, but they did not discuss the wording or how the e-mail would be sent.

Allard was concerned about one sentence in the e-mail, where Buckley asks for the public to support the budget.

“Usually we try to be more generic and encourage parents to come out and be part of the process,” he said in an interview. “That’s been our common past practice in the district.”

Allard said the e-mail did not violate any school district policies or laws of which he was aware. Also, he said Buckley has the authority to send the e-mail without having it proofread or approved by the School Board beforehand. But he is asking School Board to draft a policy establishing guidelines for future communication with parents.

“In order to prevent any future misunderstandings or concerns among the residents of Goffstown, I will request that the HR Committee of the Goffstown School Board investigate either the formation of a new policy or a modification of an existing policy and provide a recommendation back to the board that will establish parameters for future communications,” Allard said.

Before the meeting, Wynne had appealed the issue to state education Commissioner Lyonel Tracy, asking his department to put Buckley on administrative leave while it investigated the matter. Tracy replied that Wynne should take it up with the School Board, which had the purview to determine whether the e-mail was appropriate or not.

Tracy is wrong. This is a state issue and here is the law:

659:44-a Electioneering by Public Employees.

_ No public employee, as defined in RSA 273-A:1, IX, shall electioneer while
in the performance of his or her official duties or use government
property, including, but not limited to, telephones, facsimile machines,
vehicles, and computers, for electioneering. For the purposes of this
section, “electioneer” means to act in any way specifically designed to
influence the vote of a voter on any question or office. Any person who
violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

RSA 273-A:1, IX and X read as follows:

IX. “Public employee” means any person employed by a public employer

_ (a) Persons elected by popular vote;
_ (b) Persons appointed to office by the chief executive or legislative body
of the public employer;
_ (c) Persons whose duties imply a confidential relationship to the public
employer; or
_ (d) Persons in a probationary or temporary status, or employed
seasonally, irregularly or on call. For the purposes of this chapter,
however, no employee shall be determined to be in a probationary status
who shall have been employed for more than 12 months or who has an
individual contract with his employer, nor shall any employee be
determined to be in a temporary status solely by reason of the source of
funding of the position in which he is employed.

_ X. “Public employer” means the state and any political subdivision
thereof, the judicial branch of the state, any quasi-public corporation,
council, commission, agency or authority, and the state university

Could some teachers finally be waking up?

Hat Tip Rich Johns the following piece was published on National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation

Okay before someone gets on me it is not an Obama issue it is a teachers' unions and tax dollar issue. I do not like how millions upon millions of education tax dollars are used against taxpayers and are not in the classroom going directly to our children's education.

Teachers really should be tracking their unions dues more closely because misuse of their unions dues is not an uncommon story.


Teachers File FEC Complaint against NEA for Illegal PAC Money Laundering Scheme

By Nick Cote

Sworn testimony indicates union officials misled educators, diverted union treasury funds into political committee

Location: Washington, DC

Washington, DC (January 13, 2009) – The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation announced today it will file a formal complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) asking it to investigate charges made by two Alabama educators who discovered a union scheme to divert their money into the National Education Association’s (NEA) political action committee (PAC).

Claire Waites, the chair of the science department, and Dr. Jeanne Fox, an assistant principal, both work at Daphne Middle School in Bay Minette, Alabama. Waites and Fox are both members of the Baldwin County Education Association (BCEA), Alabama Education Association (AEA), and NEA teacher unions.

In July 2008, Waites and Fox attended the NEA’s annual convention in Washington, DC, as delegates of the BCEA. By telephone, BCEA union president Saadia Hunter informed Waites and Fox that contributions to a “children’s fund” in their names were made from money included in their expense reimbursements for their trip to the convention.

Although Hunter told Waites that these contributions were not political in nature, they actually went to the NEA’s PAC, the NEA Fund for Children and Public Education.

Later, Hunter admitted that the money would be contributed to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign. Sworn statements by Waites and Fox indicate that the AEA union boss also admitted that the PAC contributions were paid with BCEA members’ dues. However, it is illegal for unions to contribute to political candidates using “dues, fees, or other moneys required as a condition of membership in a labor organization.”

Teacher union officials also violated federal law by encouraging and soliciting contributions under false pretenses and without informing Waites or Fox of their right to refuse to contribute without any reprisal. Federal law also forbids campaign contributions made in the name of another person.

“This union money laundering scheme makes a mockery of federal election law,” said Stefan Gleason, vice president of the National Right to Work Foundation, which has joined Waites and Fox as a complainant. “We suspect this scheme was widely used by the NEA union hierarchy and could involve hundreds of thousands of dollars. We urge the FEC to take decisive action.”

Terms of Web Site Use

Copyright © 2008 National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation
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Okay you have to check out this too.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Action Needed to Oppose Threatening Homeschool Legislation

I received the following from HSLDA. Please contact your reps and let them know New Hampshire homeschoolers save New Hampshire taxpayers around 45 million dollars by homeschooling their children please allow them to homeschool without government interference.

Don't be fooled Rep Day's legislation is about money for taxeaters.


Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

New Hampshire homeschoolers will have to pull together to defeat Representative Judith Day's ill-conceived homeschool bills (H.B. 367 and 368). H.B. 367 is the most significant threat to New Hampshire homeschoolers since New Hampshire's homeschool law was passed in 1990.

If enacted, H.B. 367 would make New Hampshire's homeschool law one of the most restrictive in the country. Because of its scope, the bill would create new burdens on homeschoolers and participating agencies. HSLDA is coordinating with homeschool leaders in New Hampshire and we are asking for your help now to defeat this unnecessary and irrational legislation.
We are asking for your help.


1) Please use the alphabetized list at to contact the members of the House Education committee (or contact your own representative if he is on the committee). Please tell them in your own words to oppose this bill and to ask them their position on the bill. Report the legislator's position to If your representative is not on the committee use the alphabetized list at the link.

Please read the bill (see the link on HSLDA's bill page if you haven't yet) and tell the committee in your own words (feel free to add additional arguments --there are certainly many):

"H.B. 367 and 368 should be voted ITL. A majority of last year's homeschool study commission voted not to change the law. RSA 193-A was drafted in 1990 with all stakeholders involved, but it appears that Representative Day has ignored the recommendations of the commission and consulted none of the stakeholders for input about her proposed legislation. This bill is misguided and unnecessary. Twenty years of experience show that the New Hampshire home school law works well--no changes are needed or wanted. A growing body of national research continues to show that homeschooling works and produces superior academic results. Research also shows that there is no positive correlation between increased regulation and performance.
This bill would impose unnecessary and harmful restrictions on homeschoolers in New Hampshire where there is no evidence to suggest any change is needed. For this and other reasons please vote ITL on H.B. 367 and 368."

2) Attend the February 10 meeting of the Home Education Advisory Council ("HEAC"). In attendance will be members of the House Education Committee and Members of the Department of Education. This will be a further opportunity to demonstrate opposition and concern about this unnecessary and radical change to New Hampshire's homeschool law. The meeting will be held in Room 12 at the Department of Education located in the State Office Complex in Concord at 101 Pleasant Street.

Here is what this Bill will do:

Instead of having four methods to comply with the annual assessment requirement, EVERY homeschooler EVERY year will have to submit to BOTH standardized testing AND a portfolio evaluation administered by a "credentialed educator".

Superintendent or non-public school principals would be required to review BOTH test results AND the portfolio evaluation to determine IF a home educated in the opinion of the superintendent or nonpublic school principle" has demonstrated satisfactory "academic growth" and MAY continue without probation.

Following a one year probation the superintendent or non public school principal would be able to terminate a home education program. The program would be able to appeal to the State Board of Education whose decision would be FINAL.

New Hampshire homeschoolers would have to pay for two evaluations instead of just one. Participating agencies would have to use their scarce and valuable time to comply with unnecessary bureaucratic filing requirements for no goo d reason.

Parents would not be allowed to choose the best method of assessment for their student.

Superintendents and principles would have to use their own subjective judgment to determine whether a student has demonstrated "academic growth".

The bill creates undefined terms (Such as "credentialed educator" and "academic growth") that would increase the chances of arbitrary decision making by superintendents or principals who would have to use their own subjective opinion to decide whether home education programs are put on probation or terminated.


New Hampshire's homeschool law was passed in 1990 after much deliberation among all stakeholders including homeschoolers, public education officials, and legislators. The next year, in 1991, the New Hampshire legislature amended the home school law to add a statement of purpose.

"The general court recognizes , in the enactment of RSA 193-A...that it is the primary right and obligation of a parent to choose the appropriate educational alternative for a child...The general court further recognizes that home education is more individualized instruction that instruction normally provided in the classroom

The law has been modified slightly since. Then in 2008 a legislative commission formed by SB 337 to examine to see if changes were needed in the law voted 4-2 with one abstention by the chairman, NOT to make changes to the home school law. In the face of this vote and a lack of substantive data indicating any problem to be solved at all (never mind that the current draft not only does not SOLVE a problem but
would create a host of other problems) Representative Day has proposed
radical changes to the law in the form of H.B. 367 and 368.

In the surrounding states of Vermont, Massachusetts and Maine, the last 20 years have seen great conflict between homeschoolers and the government over how much involvement by the government is appropriate. In Massachusetts there have been two Supreme Court cases and a number of lower level court cases--even today there is constant friction
between homeschoolers and local school officials. In Vermont there are dozens of hearings every year over usually minor issues of administration and paperwork at the State level. In 2003, Maine finally reduced the amount of regulation on homeschoolers and switched its law from approval to a "notice of intent" because of the problems.
In stark contrast, New Hampshire has enjoyed a healthy relationship between homeschoolers and the government because of the respect the law creates options to partner with a non public school and to choose from among four different options to comply with the annual assessment.

In the United States of America only a minority of the states require ANY assessment of home educated students. Of those that do not a single state requires both a standardized test AND a portfolio every year. Only Pennsylvania, one of the most restrictive in the country, requires both a portfolio and test and that only during grade 3, 5 and 8 a total of 3 years of the student's entire educational career.

H.B. 367 and 368 are unnecessary. The bills impose a needless burden on homeschoolers and shift authority to determine whether a child should be homeschooled from parents to others. Parents have a fundamental right under the United States Constitution to direct the upbringing and education of their children, and legislation like Representative Day's undermines this right by going against the presumption that parents act in their children's best interest.

Thank you for your work to support homeschool freedom in New Hampshire and for taking action to defeat this harmful legislation.


Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

The Economy Is Going to Get Bad - No duh

At last years town hall meeting I too had painted a grim picture yet all school warrants passed. Maybe Croydon residents did not believe we were going to have four dollar gasoline last summer. Will the educrats fill town hall again and pass tax warrant increases this year? I am sure a certain someone will be by the phone to call people in if a warrant has any chance of failing.

Okay if housing prices went down why did our assessment go up? In reality our assessment should not have gone up as no home has sold in our development since we purchased our property in November of 2006.

Boy do I sound a little cranky today?

The following AP piece appeared on MSNBC.


Economists paint grim picture for NH, region

updated 5:55 p.m. ET, Wed., Jan. 21, 2009

CONCORD, N.H. - One by one a parade of economists — apologetic for bearing bad tidings — painted a grim picture for New Hampshire and the region lasting into next year.

"I've got binoculars on trying to see the light at the end of this housing market tunnel," Russ Thibeault, president of Applied Economic Research in Laconia, told lawmakers Wednesday.

As he left, Thibeault summed up for the others: "Good luck. It's going to be a tough couple of years."

The House budget and tax writing committees had asked the economists to offer their outlooks and any solutions to the state's budget crisis. Dennis Delay of the New Hampshire Center for Public Policy Studies suggested the revenue shortfall — if nothing changes — could be $500 million over the life of the budget for the two years beginning July 1.

"I don't really know where revenues are going to be in 2010 and 2011," he began before offering his qualified assessment.

Ross Gittell, a professor at the University of New Hampshire and forecast manager for New England Economic Partnership, offered a bit of cheer. New Hampshire's jobless rate is expected to remain below the national rate even if the state rate hits 7.4 percent as projected.

"We're going to come out of this relatively strong," he said.

But Gittell and the others also cautioned that the recovery will be very slow.

Gittell estimated New Hampshire will lose 16,000 jobs due to the recession and though hiring will win out over layoffs by the end of next year, the state won't recover all the jobs it loses until 2012.

Gittell said the forecast is for New Hampshire's housing prices to drop 23 percent before a slow recovery.

Economists say the current recession is similar to one New Hampshire experienced in 1990. Thibeault said it took nine years for home prices to reach the prices they were in 1989 after they dropped in the 1990 recession and a similar, slow recovery is likely with this recession.

"It's a steep drop and it's going to be a gradual recovery," he said. "Hopefully we will bottom out in 2009."

Buyers aren't getting into the market despite low interest rates because they're afraid they'll be laid off, Thibeault said.

"It really is confidence in jobs, confidence in the economy that are the missing ingredients," he said.

He said he's hopeful federal incentives will help stabilize the market by the end of this year.

Shawn Warren of auditing firm KPMG said other states are doing everything from not paying bills to tapping rainy day savings accounts to deal with budget shortfalls from declining revenues.

Warren said short-term fixes may take care of immediate budget problems without resolving the underlying problems. For example, across-the-board cuts may appear attractive, but would exempt fixed spending that can't be cut — such as debt payments — and lead to deeper cuts in other areas of government without examining whether the right cuts were made.

Warren said the same applies to layoffs since government needs the right people in place to be effective.

"It is not a sustainable way to balance a budget in the long-run," he said.

He also cautioned against selling state assets to plug ongoing spending holes. Once the cash is gone, the state no longer has the asset and still has the spending problem, he said.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Thought of the Day - I am not really a fashion maven I am all for comfort and I have not been a fan of Bush as of late, but you have to give him credit for respecting the office. A major Bush rule gets scrapped by Obama.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

This was a shocker.

I found this on a Progressive Website of all places. It sure would be nice if Obama lead from the center and not the left. If nothing else I wish he had the Cahoonas to fight the educational establishment and fight for real education reform. Over the last four decades millions of children have been left behind and those devastated most are black and African American children. It would be great if he would step up to the plate for the children of America.



Even as official Washington came together to celebrate Martin Luther King Day and Barack Obama's inauguration, fault lines were deepening in an intra-Democratic Party policy debate that the incoming president hopes to avoid -- but may not be able to.

On Monday at Cardozo High School in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of D.C., the Rev. Al Sharpton and New York City schools Chancellor Joel Klein hosted a bipartisan group of civil rights leaders and educators focused on addressing the achievement gap, in part through advancing policies opposed by teachers' unions, including test score based performance pay and private school voucher programs. Other speakers included incoming secretary of education Arne Duncan; Sen. John McCain; outgoing education secretary Margaret Spellings; Newark mayor Cory Booker; New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg; former
speaker of the House Newt Gingrich; D.C. mayor Adrian Fenty; and controversial D.C. schools chancellor Michelle Rhee.

In front of an audience of enthusiastic African American families and District community activists, speaker after speaker came to the podium and attacked the "status quo" in Democratic education policy. To the trained ear, these were thinly veiled fighting words addressed toward the leadership of urban teachers' unions. "As a Democrat, there are forces in our party that hold us back from doing the right thing for children," said Cory Booker, who has been targeted by Newark's teachers' union because of his support for a voucher program. "So I am no longer concerned with right or left. I just want to move forward."

But proving that fiery rhetoric about education reform might be more popular with parents than actual change in their children's classrooms, local schools leader Michelle Rhee -- the embodiment of this movement -- was tepidly received. When Rhee said, "There are a lot of people who benefit from our system being dysfunctional," a few voices raised in the crowd, booing. "That's not true!" a woman shouted. But Rhee continued, referring obliquely to her long-running contract dispute with the Washington Teachers' Union over merit pay and tenure. "People who keep their jobs. People who keep their contract."

--Dana Goldstein

Okay Talk About Stating the Obvious.

Seriously who voted for him and did not realize this was coming. He made it perfectly clear to Joe the Plumber.


The Obama presidency: Here comes socialism
By Dick Morris
Posted: 01/20/09 06:12 PM [ET]
2009-2010 will rank with 1913-14, 1933-36, 1964-65 and 1981-82 as years that will permanently change our government, politics and lives. Just as the stars were aligned for Wilson, Roosevelt, Johnson and Reagan, they are aligned for Obama. Simply put, we enter his administration as free-enterprise, market-dominated, laissez-faire America. We will shortly become like Germany, France, the United Kingdom, or Sweden — a socialist democracy in which the government dominates the economy, determines private-sector priorities and offers a vastly expanded range of services to many more people at much higher taxes.

Obama will accomplish his agenda of “reform” under the rubric of “recovery.” Using the electoral mandate bestowed on a Democratic Congress by restless voters and the economic power given his administration by terrified Americans, he will change our country fundamentally in the name of lifting the depression. His stimulus packages won’t do much to shorten the downturn — although they will make it less painful — but they will do a great deal to change our nation.

In implementing his agenda, Barack Obama will emulate the example of Franklin D. Roosevelt. (Not the liberal mythology of the New Deal, but the actuality of what it accomplished.) When FDR took office, he was enormously successful in averting a total collapse of the banking system and the economy. But his New Deal measures only succeeded in lowering the unemployment rate from 23 percent in 1933, when he took office, to 13 percent in the summer of 1937. It never went lower. And his policies of over-regulation generated such business uncertainty that they triggered a second-term recession. Unemployment in 1938 rose to 17 percent and, in 1940, on the verge of the war-driven recovery, stood at 15 percent. (These data and the real story of Hoover’s and Roosevelt’s missteps, uncolored by ideology, are available in The Forgotten Man by Amity Shlaes, copyright 2007.)

But in the name of a largely unsuccessful effort to end the Depression, Roosevelt passed crucial and permanent reforms that have dominated our lives ever since, including Social Security, the creation of the Securities and Exchange Commission, unionization under the Wagner Act, the federal minimum wage and a host of other fundamental changes.

Obama’s record will be similar, although less wise and more destructive. He will begin by passing every program for which liberals have lusted for decades, from alternative-energy sources to school renovations, infrastructure repairs and technology enhancements. These are all good programs, but they normally would be stretched out for years. But freed of any constraint on the deficit — indeed, empowered by a mandate to raise it as high as possible — Obama will do them all rather quickly.

But it is not his spending that will transform our political system, it is his tax and welfare policies. In the name of short-term stimulus, he will give every American family (who makes less than $200,000) a welfare check of $1,000 euphemistically called a refundable tax credit. And he will so sharply cut taxes on the middle class and the poor that the number of Americans who pay no federal income tax will rise from the current one-third of all households to more than half. In the process, he will create a permanent electoral majority that does not pay taxes, but counts on ever-expanding welfare checks from the government. The dependency on the dole, formerly limited in pre-Clinton days to 14 million women and children on Aid to Families with Dependent Children, will now grow to a clear majority of the American population.

Will he raise taxes? Why should he? With a congressional mandate to run the deficit up as high as need be, there is no reason to raise taxes now and risk aggravating the depression. Instead, Obama will follow the opposite of the Reagan strategy. Reagan cut taxes and increased the deficit so that liberals could not increase spending. Obama will raise spending and increase the deficit so that conservatives cannot cut taxes. And, when the economy is restored, he will raise taxes with impunity, since the only people who will have to pay them would be rich Republicans.

In the name of stabilizing the banking system, Obama will nationalize it. Using Troubled Asset Relief Program funds to write generous checks to needy financial institutions, his administration will demand preferred stock in exchange. Preferred stock gets dividends before common stockholders do. With the massive debt these companies will owe to the government, they will only be able to afford dividends for preferred stockholders — the government, not private investors. So who will buy common stock? And the government will demand that its bills be paid before any profits that might materialize are reinvested in the financial institution, so how will the value of the stocks ever grow? Devoid of private investors, these institutions will fall ever more under government control.

Obama will begin the process by limiting executive compensation. Then he will urge restructuring and lowering of home mortgages in danger of default (as the feds have already done with Citibank).

Then will come guidance on the loans to make and government instructions on the types of enterprises to favor. God grant that some Blagojevich type is not in charge of the program, using his power to line his pockets. The United States will find itself with an economic system comparable to that of Japan, where the all-powerful bureaucracy at MITI (Ministry of International Trade and Industry) manages the economy, often making mistakes like giving mainframe computers priority over the development of laptops.

But it is the healthcare system that will experience the most dramatic and traumatic of changes. The current debate between erecting a Medicare-like governmental single payer or channeling coverage through private insurance misses the essential point. Without a lot more doctors, nurses, clinics, equipment and hospital beds, health resources will be strained to the breaking point. The people and equipment that now serve 250 million Americans and largely neglect all but the emergency needs of the other 50 million will now have to serve everyone. And, as government imposes ever more Draconian price controls and income limits on doctors, the supply of practitioners and equipment will decline as the demand escalates. Price increases will be out of the question, so the government will impose healthcare rationing, denying the older and sicker among us the care they need and even barring them from paying for it themselves. (Rationing based on income and price will be seen as immoral.)

And Obama will move to change permanently the partisan balance in America. He will move quickly to legalize all those who have been in America for five years, albeit illegally, and to smooth their paths to citizenship and voting. He will weaken border controls in an attempt to hike the Latino vote as high as he can in order to make red states like Texas into blue states like California. By the time he is finished, Latinos and African-Americans will cast a combined 30 percent of the vote. If they go by top-heavy margins for the Democrats, as they did in 2008, it will assure Democratic domination (until they move up the economic ladder and become good Republicans).

And he will enact the check-off card system for determining labor union representation, repealing the secret ballot in union elections. The result will be to raise the proportion of the labor force in unions up to the high teens from the current level of about 12 percent.

Finally, he will use the expansive powers of the Federal Communications Commission to impose “local” control and ownership of radio stations and to impose the “fairness doctrine” on talk radio. The effect will be to drive talk radio to the Internet, fundamentally change its economics, and retard its growth for years hence.

But none of these changes will cure the depression. It will end when the private sector works through the high debt levels that triggered the collapse in the first place. And, then, the large stimulus package deficits will likely lead to rapid inflation, probably necessitating a second recession to cure it.

So Obama’s name will be mud by 2012 and probably by 2010 as well. And the Republican Party will make big gains and regain much of its lost power.

But it will be too late to reverse the socialism of much of the economy, the demographic change in the electorate, the rationing of healthcare by the government, the surge of unionization and the crippling of talk radio.

Morris, a former adviser to Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) and President Bill Clinton, is the author of Outrage. To get all of Dick Morris’s and Eileen McGann’s columns for free by email, go to To order a signed copy of their new best-selling book, Fleeced, go to

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Another Child Placed In Handcuffs.

The following piece came to me via my friends at School Corruption the piece appears on and SNAFU - Special Needs Advocates for Understanding.

Add this to the many reasons as to why I do not want to send my children to public schools. Although this is not a common occurrence bad judgment on the part of teachers is not that uncommon.

Autistic child taken from school in handcuffs

Posted: Jan 13, 2009 06:26 PM PST
Updated: Jan 13, 2009 06:26 PM PST
COEUR D'ALENE -- A Ponderay mom was left outraged by school officials in Kootenai, Idaho ordered her autistic 8-year-old daughter handcuffed and taken from the school in a police car.

Outside her Ponderay home, 8-year-old Evelyn Towry, in her pink boots and favorite sweatshirt explains why she's now suspended from school.

"Because I was trying to leave and they hold me down," Evelyn said.

Evelyn is a third grader at Kootenai Elementary and has Asperger's Syndrome, a high functioning form of Autism. On Friday she started to act out.

"She wanted to attend a Christmas party in her cow sweatshirt and they told her she couldn't that she would have to tuck the tail in and put ears down and she dug her heels in the way she does quite often and said she wouldn't take it off," Evelyn's mom Spring said.

Spring says that when Evelyn tried to leave anyway two teachers restrained her, which is when Evelyn began kicking, pinching and spitting on the teachers.

"Well, I kicked because I was upset they were holding me down and I got thumb bruises on me," Evelyn said.

School officials then called the police and Evelyn's mom. When Spring got to school to pick her daughter up police were already escorting Evelyn in handcuffs out of the building and into a police cruiser. Police then took her to a local juvenile detention center where she stayed for an hour, after which she was allowed to go home.

"I was terrified and I was scared and I was hurt and I wanted to throw up. I wanted to take my baby with me," Spring said.

School officials responded to a request for an interview for this story by e-mail, with the district superintendent saying they followed a specific safety plan for Evelyn which was agreed upon by the district and her mental health provider.

The plan, according to the district, says that "If a student assaults staff it is appropriate to call parents, involved support agencies, and local law enforcement officials if needed. All of the above occurred regarding this unfortunate incident."

"I never saw the plan, I never signed the plan," Spring said.

On Tuesday morning the Bonner County prosecutor charged Evelyn with one count of battery.

By Tuesday afternoon the charge was dropped.

"I think it's absolutely ridiculous. She doesn't even know what battery is," Spring said.

Spring Towry and her husband are now pursuing civil action. While they don't excuse their daughter's behavior Spring says it didn't have to go this far.

"I don't want this to happen to another child or another parent," she said.

Lettuce Examine duh NEA And Teachers Unions And EdukShun In General

So true and funny too. Hat tip to American Daily for the following piece.


Lettuce Examine duh NEA And Teachers Unions And EdukShun In General
EdukShun piece by Malcolm Hedges
Da NEA (Numb-skull EdukShun Advocates) and other teachers unions are Progressive Socialist driven subverters of true education where ever they gain power.

We spend zillions of dollars for “education” and get many High School and College/University graduates that can’t read their diplomas?

Those graduates are well versed in “Nanny State” concepts, Marxism, Political Correctness and Socialism, but know little to nothing about history, mathematics, reading, speaking English, US government or writing.

Every day some Progressive Socialist says we need “more money to fix education” , the key word is “fix”, the fix is in and continued funding of Progressive Socialist training camps is all they can see in the future.

The Department Of Education and school administrators are on board and endorse the scheme as well.

The cry for “every kid must go to college” is total BS! It’s a scam to keep useless Progressive Socialist Colleges and Universities solvent.

About 75% of the high school populations are not functionally qualified for a 4-year College or University. Many, if not most, of those students would be better served by attending a Business School, Junior College, Medical Institute or Technical Institute.

It has been demonstrated over and over that the longer students attend US public schools the stupider they get. By the way, that is the Progressive agenda and it is working well.

Our country is starving for highly paid qualified mechanical, medical and technical personnel! College/University students are trained that having to work for a living is “below their station in life”!

Yes, the USA currently has no valid working educational system…. Teachers unions make sure that very few students manage to survive public schools with any common sense or practical knowledge.

Posted by Malcolm Hedges on 1/18/09 at 04:18 PM

You now owe the government 194,400 dollars.

Yep and with Obama's spending proposal this amount will only go up and the stock market will probably be going down another 600 points this year.

Hat tip to Pete the Finance Guy for sending us the following article from the Institute for Truth in Accounting.



Institute for Truth in Accounting again calls for Congress to face the truth about our nation's finances

Chicago - Today, the Institute for Truth in Accounting released its annual "Financial State of the Union," and the numbers are not good and they are getting worse every day.

America's share of our nation's financial hole is now $59 trillion-each of us owes $194,400.

"We can fix this problem, if everyone in the U.S. sends all of their assets - their value in their houses, cars, investments - to the federal government," said Sheila Weinberg, founder and CEO of the Institute for Truth in Accounting (IFTA).

She continued, "Then the government would have to make investments that would earn a high enough rate of return to fund all of the promises that have been made."

"As the people of this country inaugurate their new president next week, and as the 111th Congress begins, it is imperative the truthful condition of our nation's finances be revealed," said Roger Nelson, Chairman of IFTA's Board of Directors.

He highlighted, "The truth is together with unfunded liabilities and promises to our retirees we're in the hole for over $59 trillion.We need to understand this truth before we can move forward with any new proposals."

The Financial State of the Union, available at, provides this accounting by outlining the financial situation of the nation, including unfunded liabilities for Social Security, Medicare and other retirement benefits. The report, which is available in a one-page, downloadable PDF format, is designed to draw attention to our true financial situation at such a critical time as our President-Elect's first address.

"Debt has become our country's drug of choice, personally and nationally, and until we are honest with ourselves about how much we really owe, we can't begin to solve this problem," warned Weinberg.

"Treasury and the politicians say our nation's debt is only $10.6 trillion, which assumes we owe no promises benefits to our seniors."
The IFTA is the sponsor of, a national campaign to bring awareness to our nation's pressing financial issues.

The IFTA is currently preparing for the launch of

For more information, contact Darlene Porteus at 847-835-5200 or visit
About the Institute for Truth in Accounting

The Institute for Truth in Accounting (IFTA) is dedicated to promoting honest, accurate, and transparent accounting at all levels of government and business. As a non-partisan, non-profit organization, the IFTA works to expose accounting deficiencies while promoting better, more accessible delivery of accurate government financial data-and, in turn, providing a foundation for more informed public policy. The IFTA provides its expertise to develop more effective accounting standards and deliver accurate government financial information to policymakers, opinion leaders, and citizens, so they can all work for a more secure financial future.

To learn more, please visit our website at

Are Claremont Residents Throwing Their Own Tea Party?

This awesome piece appeared in the Eagle Times on Sunday. It is great to see residents saying enough is enough. In the article one of the council members asked where were these people during the budget process. This was said here as well by Carol Marsh, Croydon school board member during the town hall meeting last year.

The Croydon school board meeting in December was set to discuss the budget. The meeting was changed because of a concert. Although not related to the meeting the power was out for a number of Croydon residents at that time. But the school board did very little to inform the public of the budget hearing or the change in the hearing. When the meeting did happen the person in attendance was not asked to be involved although clearly she has been attending meetings regularly and has expressed concern as to how tax dollars are spent. The town of Croydon has a website as well as Newport Schools, we also have the Eagle Times as a source of news. There is absolutely no reason why the school board members could not keep the citizens of Croydon more informed. I hope that Ms. Marsh does not complain about lack of involvement at the next school board meeting because clearly the school board does not want to share the information. The school board should be more free flowing with information and communicating better to the community. Although we are a small town posting at the school and the country store is not enough, I hope the next elected school board member keeps residents more informed.

Lastly just because people do not attend the school board meeting does not mean they are not concerned as to how our tax dollars are spent.


Petition seeks massive budget cuts
Proposal draws fire from Claremont city officials

By BEN BULKELEY, Staff Writer
Sunday, January 18, 2009 7:19 PM

CLAREMONT -- Cynthia Coolidge Howard, along with 300 other Claremont residents, have petitioned city council and the mayor asking for deep cuts in the city budget and more citizen involvement in the process.

At least one city councilor believes that the cuts would devastate the city and wipe out all progress that has been made.

"I've been thinking about it for some while, but what really prompted me was the last city budget," Howard said. "My friends and neighbors are losing their homes. Some of these people have lived here their entire life, but now their taxes are higher than their mortgages. They can't afford both."

The petition calls for city council and the mayor to enact spending cuts of 30 percent and to place a freeze on non-emergency spending such as resolutions or requests of the city administration.

City councilor Jeff Goff questioned the timing of Howard's petition.

"My first reaction was where were these 300 people during the process? We spent considerable time dealing with the ramifications of every decision -- line by line department by department," Goff said. "We addressed these types of concerns throughout the public hearing and budget process. Where were these 300 people? We heard from no one.

"My second concern is I don't think they understand the financial uncertainty that would come from something like this -- where would the 30 percent come from? How many firemen would you have to lay off? How many police officers? How many DPW employees would you have to lay off?" Goff said. "I don't know if some of the people who signed this fully knew what they were doing."

Howard said that she had been collecting signatures for almost a month and that "some people were calling me to sign the petition."

In addition to the cuts Howard said that she would like to see more residents involved in the process.

Howard said that she would like to have a "Citizen Oversight Committee" set up to go through the city's budget.

"I would like the citizen oversight committee to go through and place cuts (on the budget)," Howard said. "And have an actual budget cut session.

"I would like to see the petition placed on the agenda and voted on by the city council," Howard said.

In order to cut the city budget by 30 percent, Howard said that she would like to see the planning and development department eliminated.

"I think that if planning and development were to be eliminated with the city manager picking up the responsibilities it would save Claremont taxpayers about $1 million," she said, adding "I think that the city should also get rid of some of the consultants which could save the taxpayers up to another $1 million."

In addition to cutting the consultants and planning and development Howard said that she would like to see the bonding for current city projects eliminated.

"If there was a citizens' oversight committee it would prompt immediate action and the council wouldn't rubber stamp everything that came in front of them," Howard said. "During the budget process only two councilors asked questions, and only three voted against the budget."

Howard said that one of the main reasons behind the petition is the economy.

"The economy's down, we're in a recession and a lot of other cities are making cuts and laying people off," she said. "This is a bad time to be raising taxes. With the exception of one year when the budget was level-funded, taxes have gone up every year."

Howard said that she doesn't want just the city to cut its budget by 30 percent, but the schools as well.

"We would like to see the same 30 percent (decrease) from the schools as well," Howard said.

In order to cut the schools' budget by 30 percent Howard said that she would like to see consultants and engineers positions eliminated.

"I think that the school shouldn't be subcontracting out some of this work. I would like to see some of the staff pick up (the workload)," Howard said. "There needs to be restructuring -- the insurance, the health insurance, dental. These savings would be passed along to the taxpayers."

In addition to the schools and city Howard said that savings would be needed from the county.

"I don't think we can afford this new jail treatment center. With the deficit we can't build a new jail," Howard said. "These aren't hardened criminals -- I think that some of people could just be sentenced to community service."

Goff wondered how a deep cut to the city's budget would affect the departments and infrastructure.

"How many essential city services would be lost? This would severely impact the city financially and severely impact the infrastructure," said Goff. "It has taken years for Claremont to get back to where we are now. If this (was accepted) then we would right back to where we were. It is absolutely essential that we don't go back to that mindset."

City manager Guy Santagate agreed with Goff saying that a reduction would result in layoffs.

"The lion's share of the layoffs would be focused on the police department, fire department and DPW," said Santagate, adding that the reason those three departments would be hit hard was because they had the largest budgets in the city.

Goff said that he felt that the city council was being singled out.

"The other issue I'm upset with is that the city's portion of property taxes is 40 percent, and yet they've only targeted the city council," said Goff. During the Wednesday meeting Goff asked Howard when she had presented the petition to the school board and the county delegation, and she replied that she had yet to present the boards with the petition.

"It was a deliberate attempt to try and embarrass the city council," Goff said. "It's ludicrous. Everyone should be held accountable, and not just the city.

"I'm sure that there are a number of well-meaning people who signed the petition, but if you look at most of the people who signed it's the same people who are against every bit of progress the city has made," Goff said. "These are the same citizens that are against virtually everything that the city does.

"We have to call their motives in to question. This is purely political and (what they are proposing) would be devastating. It would cripple Claremont and the rest of the state would laugh at us if we were to consider something like this," Goff said.

Goff said that the consequences of cutting back the city budget by 30 percent could be disastrous.

"Every company that has pledged to come to Claremont would bail and every bit of progress we have made would be gone," Goff said. "It's a dangerous game."

Santagate said that he hadn't heard of a petition until Howard was at the meeting.

"I was surprised," Santagate said. "It was the first I had heard of any petition and to the best of my knowledge it was the first any of the councilors had heard of the petition. The council voted on the budget in late November, and it was finalized on Dec. 2 by law.

"There were four public meetings and they were noticed and posted and people were invited," said Santagate. "There were 25 to 30 hours of budget discussion and I think only one or two people came to speak."

In response to the loss of homes, Santagate said "the city has not taken any homes or houses since I've been here. Not one. The banks have taken foreclosures, but the city has not taken a single house."

For the current year, the overall tax rate actually dropped from $32.90 to $32.59 per $1,000 of assessed value. The city's portion of $12.94 did not change, while the local school rate fell 85 cents, and the state school rate fell 4 cents. The county rate rose 51 cents.

"When we submitted the budget in 2008 there was no increase, and then this year there was less than a 3 percent increase (in the tax rate). So over the last two years there has been a one and a half percent increase," said Santagate.

"I've heard from a lot of people that they want a balance between service and budget," said Santagate. "I have to compliment councilor (Paul) LaCasse because even though he still wants tax cuts he recognizes the condition of the roads, and last year he asked for an additional $600,000 for the roads. To his credit he recognized that the infrastructure needed work."

During the meeting Mayor Deb Cutts urged residents to attend a meeting on Thursday, Jan. 29, in the Teal Room at Sugar River Valley Regional Technical Center, where the tax cap issue will be brought up.

In an e-mail on Saturday Cutts was enthusiastic about the prospect of bringing together the school board, county and city council to discuss the tax cap.

"As I shared with Ms. Howard during the council meeting, the city is hosting a remarkable joint session workshop between the county, the school and the city on Jan. 29," Cutts said in the e-mail. "Several congressional constituents will also be joining us which, in my opinion raises the significance and potential of this meeting to a higher level. The topic of this workshop addresses the ultimate concern in the petition-- taxes. The petition will be a focal point of the Jan. 29 meeting."

During the December city council meeting Santagate pitched the idea of a tax cap.

"I sympathize with the taxpayers -- this is a deep recession. And that's why I'm proposing the tax cap," said Santagate.

Pipes Frozen

We live in a relatively new home and because it is a prefab home the water baseboard system runs through the outside of the house. Late last week two sections of our home froze so I have had to wake up and start fires right away. Because of this I have not posted as frequently as I would have liked. Alexander's sleep pattern has changed as well so it is hard to type when he is around.


Sunday, January 18, 2009

5 Myths About No Child Left Behind

The following piece appears in the Washington Post. The greatest point in the article is point 5 - "Lawmakers blundered when they confused "qualified" with "certified" teachers. There's no solid evidence that state certification ensures classroom effectiveness -- and the booming success of programs such as Teach for America, which sends recent college graduates into troubled schools, suggests that certification may be wholly unnecessary. By requiring certified teachers in every classroom, No Child Left Behind makes it harder for district and charter schools to attract energetic and capable people who want to teach but take a less traditional route to the classroom."

If readers are interested there is a bit of research out there and can easily be found by googling the subject. I think the real world performance of homeschoolers most taught by non certified teachers further drives home the point.

I just was about to post this and I noticed the date of the report was from March of year, for some reason I thought the article appeared in yesterday's Washington Post. I hope you do enjoy the article anyway.


5 Myths About No Child Left Behind
Myths About the Education Law Everyone Loves to Hate

By Chester E. Finn Jr.
Sunday, March 30, 2008; Page B03

It's the 800-pound gorilla of U.S. education. The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), the sweeping legislation enacted six years ago to improve public schools, seems to make a lot of people unhappy. But President Bush, undaunted by the barrage of criticism aimed at this beleaguered measure by states, teachers' unions and politicians on both sides of the aisle, is pushing Congress to reauthorize it this year . Many Capitol Hill observers believe that it won't survive without the political clout a new president and Congress would bring -- but after a starring role in five straight presidential elections, education is a bit player at best in the 2008 race. Could these widespread myths about No Child Left Behind have poisoned the well?

1. No Child Left Behind is an unprecedented extension of federal control over schools.

This allegation comes most often from Republicans who, claiming that they voted for the legislation only out of courtesy toward President Bush, have forgotten the bipartisan consensus that helped enact it. It's also a common complaint from state officials, who want fewer strings on their federal dollars.

But NCLB isn't compulsory. States that don't want to jump through its hoops are free to forgo their federal dollars. (Several, such as Utah, Nebraska and Virginia, came close to doing just that, but the lure of those funds helped them overcome their reservations.) The legislation isn't unprecedented, either -- it's just another incarnation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, one of President Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society monuments. That law's centerpiece program, known as Title I, has pumped billions of federal dollars into education for poor children over the past 43 years. And the Improving America's Schools Act, signed by President Bill Clinton in 1994, was No Child Left Behind-lite, with similar expectations for states and districts but fewer rules and timelines.

2. No Child Left Behind is egregiously underfunded.

This charge comes mainly from Democrats, including liberal lions such as Massachusetts Sen. Edward Kennedy and California Rep. George Miller, who helped shape the law. It arises from the fact that NCLB, like almost every social program, was authorized at higher funding levels than have ever been -- or are likely to be -- appropriated. Viewed that way, nearly everything born in Washington is "underfunded."

The costs of complying with No Child Left Behind -- setting standards, testing children, publishing the results and intervening in low-performing schools -- are actually relatively modest. Instead of demanding more money for No Child Left Behind, critics should ask why states and local communities get such dismal returns on the half-trillion dollars, or nearly $10,000 per student, that they already spend on primary and secondary education every year.

3. Setting academic standards will fix U.S. schools.

No Child Left Behind asks state governments to set standards in reading, math and science -- to identify basic skills that students should have mastered by a given grade level -- and to test them accordingly. This follows an educational theory called standards-based instruction that says: State what children should know; measure their progress; and use rewards and punishments to help them succeed.

For this to work, of course, good standards have to be in place, and NCLB doesn't address the problem of mediocre or even downright silly standards. Compromises needed to pass NCLB left the law laid-back about standards yet fussy about what states and districts should do when those standards aren't met. The upshot: low expectations on one hand and too much micromanagement on the other. A few states, such as Massachusetts, California and South Carolina, have taken their job seriously. But the majority either expect woefully little of their students and schools or have developed such nebulous standards that nobody -- not parents, not teachers, not test makers -- can make out what students are supposed to be learning.

4. The standardized testing required by No Child Left Behind gets in the way of real learning.

Teachers' animus toward standardized testing has many roots, chief among them the grueling weeks of preparation and exams that they and their students endure every year. But the accountability made possible by standardized testing isn't all bad. If the test is an honest measure of a solid curriculum, then teaching kids the skills and knowledge they need to pass it is honorable work. Just ask any Advanced Placement teacher.

5. Certified teachers are better than non-certified teachers.

Lawmakers blundered when they confused "qualified" with "certified" teachers. There's no solid evidence that state certification ensures classroom effectiveness -- and the booming success of programs such as Teach for America, which sends recent college graduates into troubled schools, suggests that certification may be wholly unnecessary. By requiring certified teachers in every classroom, No Child Left Behind makes it harder for district and charter schools to attract energetic and capable people who want to teach but take a less traditional route to the classroom.

Chester E. Finn Jr. is a senior fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution and the author of "Troublemaker: A Personal History of School Reform Since Sputnik."