Fetishizing School Chiefs Hurts Kids

Cathleen Black, with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (left) and outgoing Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.

Randy Shaw: Unfortunately, the media’s excessive and irrational devotion to school chiefs as saviors for the nation’s schools ignores the reality that no school chief, can overcome inadequate school funding by running schools like corporate turnaround specialists, and fetishizing their importance distracts from schools’ real needs. Education seems to be the only field where rising to the top requires no experience. Careers spent in the profit-driven corporate world are now identified as the best backgrounds for public school leadership.

The Company We Keep

karzai and obama

Stanley Kutler: Once again, we have bet the mortgage on one leader, no matter how inept and corrupt he might be. Karzai is playing off various sides, eagerly accepting the largesse and patronage of at least two governments, each with its own interests.

You’re a Dead Woman… In the Pink Ghetto

manisha thakor

Women have been the unsung and UNPAID heroes during key periods of societal change and transition. The Pink Ghetto, a term that was coined in 1983, describes the limits women have in furthering their careers. Our nation is clearly in the midst of change and transition. As we reboot, reset, and restart – let’s not, once again, leave women to live out their years in the pink ghetto.

Top “Tossup” House Race for Progressives: Raul Grijalva

Norman Solomon: Demagogues in the Republican Party, and their Democratic allies, will say this is about amnesty and open borders. No matter how many times they repeat it, it won’t be true.

Re-introducing Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Women of African Descent

Black Lesbian Couple

Rev. Irene Monroe: After nearly two decades of LBT women of African descent’s invisibility on a national level Zuna is causing a revolution by taking the bold step in this era of single-issue queer politics to remind us all we, too, matter.

Free Speech about Saggy Pants

baggypants

Steve Hochstadt: The most unfortunate recent development in American politics is that Constitutional questions cannot be discussed calmly. Too many people care less about defending our Constitution than using it as a club to smash political opponents.

Scapegoating War Crimes in Af-Pak on Drugs

my lai

Jeremy Kuzmarov: It might not be Reefer Madness redux, but the blame being put on drugs for civilian deaths in Afghanistan today has that same air of hysteria about it.

When the Chips are Down, Democrats Defend Blue Dogs

Paul Hogarth: What good is defending a Democrat, who will simply give bi-partisan “cover” to right-wing forces of obstruction who want Obama to fail.

Searching for the Liberal Elite

steve hochstadt

Steve Hochstadt: So when I see myself labeled as part of the “liberal elite”, and more often hear people talk about the “liberal elite”, I know they are trying hard not to think about all the people they know who are liberal but not elite, or elite but not liberal.

How Corporations Own Congress

lobbyists

Shamus Cooke: A “lesser of two evils” approach to politics equals evil politicians for labor, no matter who wins. In fact, the lesser-evil Democrats have become increasingly evil over the years, to the point where the party as a whole is more Conservative than the Nixon-era Republicans.

End Illegal War: Support Bradley Manning

collateral damage

Ann Wright: Just as Daniel Ellsberg blew the whistle on the lies of the US leaders of the Vietnam War, Manning is accused of blowing the whistle on the illegality of today’s wars. What will our response to the information Manning is charged with releasing be? Can we make today’s Pentagon Papers lead to an end to illegal and wasteful wars abroad and the return of our troops home?

Another Oil Rig Explodes in the Gulf of Mexico!

Oil Rig Explosion

ANOTHER !! Oil Rig Explosion in the Gulf of Mexico National Public Radio, the New York Times, CNN and other media outlets are reporting that another offshore oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico.  According to the reports, the explosion occurred 80 miles off the coast of Louisiana, just east of the Deepwater Horizon [...]

Pushing Working People Down

strike

Jim Fuller: Probably the most obvious example so far of how the very rich are using this economic downturn to consolidate their power is the strike by 305 hourly workers at the Mott’s apple juice plant in upstate New York.

The Duh Factor, or Biz School Brilliance

fat cat

Jim Fuller: I confess to major reservations about those who work in and for the business schools that now take up far too much otherwise valuable space on most major college and university campuses.

A Permanent Housing Collapse?

Shamus Cooke: The housing market appears to be on a never-ending downward spiral, with the much-discussed “recovery” always around the next corner.

For You To Succeed, Must Someone Else Fail?

meditation

Michael Sigman: Is this just human nature, or can we be happy about our achievements without causing an equal amount of suffering in someone else?

The Unbearable Whiteness of Being

Mark Naison

Mark Naison: When my working-class white friends and fellow coaches attacked affirmative action—which they did vociferously and often—it was about preferential treatment that they saw blacks and Latinos getting on the job, especially in the civil service.

Elisabeth Bumiller: Wrong on the Tonkin Gulf Incident

tonkin

Joseph Palermo: If Bumiller really believes that her peers in the establishment press in February/March 1968 were expressing “widespread skepticism” about the facts concerning the Gulf of Tonkin Incident then shouldn’t she have been a little more “skeptical” herself when her good friend Condi Rice (along with Rummy and Cheney and the rest of the gang) were launching their own pretext for invading Iraq?

Are We Not Patriots, Too?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Rev. Irene Monroe: As LGBTQ Americans, our patriotism is not recognized. But one of our community’s greatest moments of patriotism was the Stonewall Riots of June 27–29, 1969, in New York City’s Greenwich Village. We celebrate their heroism every day as out-of-the-closet people who are intentionally visible in various facets of American life.

Blacks Prison and Unemployment

black child

Sherwood Ross: Slumlords charge exorbitant rents. “Convenience” stores charge higher prices. Military recruiters have their pick of jobless youth desperate for work. And the for-profit, private prisons increase their head count (and income) as the judicial system hands off the young drug peddlers caught in the legal web. As the Kaiser Family Foundation reported, African-Americans fill 40 percent of the nation’s prison cells. Yet they make up just 13 percent of the nation’s population.

Why CNN Fails

CNN

Randy Shaw: CNN’s chief problem is not a lack of partisanship. Instead, it is that CNN’s “news” primarily consists of opinions from partisan political hacks. Most work for CNN because no candidate wants to hire them, and it’s an easy gig because they don’t have to know much about the subjects they pontificate about. Does CNN really believe viewers are still interested in the opinions of the corporate-funded James Carville? Or that CNN will steal viewers from FOX News by hiring Erick Erickson of Redstate.com, who publicly threatened to shoot census workers? CNN is failing because it’s selling stale conventional wisdom, which viewers are rejecting.

Color of Law: New York, City of the Poor

poverty1

As the song goes, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere, it’s up to you, New York, New York.” The problem is that if you are counting on making it in New York City, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment. A recent report by The Center for an Urban Future [...]

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

murdock

Recently, Rupert Murdoch, chairman of the New York Post, personally apologized for a recent cartoon by Sean Delonas, nicknamed by some “the Picasso of Prejudice”. The cartoon, which depicted a chimpanzee being shot by the police after mauling a woman, captioned “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill”. Shown here [...]

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