This Post Isn’t For Everybody

I have recently written about inclusion in the Democratic Party, as well as Bernie Sanders’ role in the party’s future. A regular contributor to our discussion on this blog wrote me to express his feelings about my opinions, his experience here, and to discuss his views on Democratic politics. Originally, I meant only to respond to him, but after I thought about it, I realized there are other people out there in my blogging family who share his views. Thus, here is my reply to “thgeneralist”:

Okay. Let’s get something straight that I am sure is my fault, for which I apologize. If you feel like I (I can speak only for myself on this matter) have belittled you, then I have sent you the wrong message. Your views are important and appreciated, despite the fact that I don’t always agree with them or, sometimes, attempt to challenge them. Perhaps I do so in ways that sound belittling, but I assure you that’s not what I mean to communicate. I guess I have more work to do expressing myself clearly, but sometimes I just assume that my long (sometimes too long) responses indicate how valuable I find our interactions. Again, my bad for making you feel like our dialogue is not valued.

Also, as far as there being enough room for you and me in the same party, I absolutely don’t know where I gave you the impression that we can’t live under the same tent. I know all sorts of people who either are Democrats or who vote with the party but call themselves independent. I’ve never met one of them with whom I always agree. Nor do I expect to ever meet such a person. I recognize that in many cases, it is I who hold some unorthodox positions for a liberal Democrat (for instance, my stance on a strong military and how that power can serve as insurance to help maintain liberal democracies around the world, but not “create” them).

I also recognize that I am not a revolutionary in the Bernie sense. And that’s not because I don’t share many of his goals. It’s because I think, living and campaigning in Vermont all those years, he doesn’t really understand the wider electoral landscape. I can assure you, if he lived where I live, he wouldn’t think for a minute that his attempt to transform the country overnight into a European-style social democracy, complete with the high taxes that go with it, is as achievable as he sometimes makes it sound. For God’s sake, we are at this moment witnessing Republicans trying very hard to undo a very modest change in our health insurance system, Obamacare, because it is seen, falsely, as a “government-run” system. We have a lot of work to do before we are even close to achieving Bernie’s revolution of American healthcare, not to mention his other proposals.

That leads me to your false charge that I am a “Corporate Democrat.” I hesitate to call it false because I’m not exactly sure what you mean by it. But if you follow some on the left like I do, people like Cenk Uygur and that whole self-righteous bunch of litmus-test leftist purists, then I think I know what you mean. They use that term to describe people who don’t see American politics the same way, say, Bernie sees our politics. They use that term for Democrats who don’t think it is wise, given our system, to unilaterally disarm when it comes to fundraising, who believe that businesses are good for America but also believe that those businesses ought to be good for their workers. It is possible to value business while also aggressively championing labor. Neither can exist without the other.

And, thus, I could have been pissed off at your accusation, but I chose not to be. Because I think I understand why you, or others who read this blog, would falsely label me as a “corporatist,” despite the fact that for years I worked my ass off on behalf of a labor union and still remain a union officer. I think your accusation springs from the fact that I’m a progressive who doesn’t believe in the possibility, here in America, of revolutionary progress. That’s because I think I know American politics fairly well. We are not a revolution-friendly electorate, largely because of what FDR and LBJ did so long ago. People, generally, aren’t ripe for the kind of radical transformation Bernie talks about because they are relatively comfortable (“Thanks, Obama!”). They see problems, but not the kind of problems that demand revolutionary change. Heck, Bernie couldn’t even convince a majority of Democrats to buy into his revolutionary message (and I don’t even want to get into the whining about how he was “cheated” out of the nomination; that is nonsense). 

What I understand is this: our differences as Democrats aren’t so much tied to policy as they are tied to how to get from here to there. On that matter, you and I are miles apart, apparently. You say Bernie champions “causes that will resonate with most Americans.” Well, maybe they would so resonate if our politics were conducted in a vacuum. But when you mix in the severe attacks he and his policies would undergo in a real election—the inevitable and well-funded demagoguery over the taxation necessary to fund his goals, for instance—then that alleged resonance will get muffled very quickly. Suddenly the things he champions will strike the ears of many voters with a cringing dissonance. That’s just the nature of American politics at this point in time. A majority of people aren’t ready for sudden, disruptive change, and Republicans would make Bernie sound like Hugo Chávez bent on turning America into a highly dysfunctional Venezuela. Tr-mp represented, among other things, sudden, disruptive change. And he only got 46% of the vote and barely squeaked out an Electoral College advantage. And he used Bernie, the Russians, and ten thousand lies to get that “win.”

I don’t “slam” Sanders because of his radical policies. I criticize him because he seems not to recognize the reality of American politics outside the bubble of his energetic followers. He translates the narrow enthusiasm he sees at rallies and other events into a wider craving for revolutionary change. But we are still, essentially, a 50-50 country. Change, if and when it comes, will come slowly. I wish it weren’t that way. I wish we had a different electoral system, one in which the winner of the popular vote gets to be president and do things like appoint Supreme Court judges. But we don’t. We have a system that elevated an ignorant buffoon to the White’s House who will change the course of the judiciary for at least a generation, all in the direction of reactionary ideology. And Bernie, unwittingly to be sure, helped put that buffoon there by not realizing how little chance the Sanders’ campaign had of winning the primary and how much damage it was doing to the eventual anti-Tr-mp nominee by attacking her integrity—and by Bernie hesitating to endorse her until the last possible minute. I know that analysis makes a lot of Bernie people mad, but that’s the way a lot of Democrats see it.

I also fiercely criticize Bernie because he still refuses to taint himself by actually becoming a Democrat. He seems too good, too self-righteous, to ever attach himself to an entity that might say and do things he doesn’t like. And by that I mean say and do things that don’t match up exactly with his own economic vision, the only vision he seems to have or care about. He doesn’t seem to mind rounding the edges off issues like, say, reproductive rights, but he resists rather dramatically people who don’t share all of his views on economic justice or trade, or he simply seems to ignore them (he finally got around to a late, lukewarm “endorsement” of our Georgia congressional candidate, Jon Ossoff, for instance). 

What I want to tell you and others is this: the Democratic Party is a political association with certain policy goals but with uncertain and evolving strategies on how to achieve those goals. Most people who call themselves Democrats share most of the party’s goals, but have different views on how to get there. Much of the variation on that goal-achieving strategy has to do with one’s view of the electorate. I have met people here in southwest Missouri who, election after election, actually believe Democrats can win here. They base that belief on the enthusiasm they see at local events and other indicators. But when you step back and look at the local landscape from a higher perspective, you see very quickly that Democrats, particularly Bernie-friendly Democrats, cannot do well here. Heck, a few elections back we actually had two Democratic candidates for the House seat who were really Republicans who called themselves Democrats. Most of their policy positions were indistinguishable from the average Republican. And they still got trounced. In politics it is vitally important to know the electoral landscape, to know where to put scarce resources, to know where and how to put up a robust goal-achieving fight. That’s not to say local Democrats shouldn’t try to change the landscape. But the changes will come slowly, incrementally. There will be no Democratic Party revolution here in southwest Missouri, I can assure you. 

Again, I apologize for making you feel belittled or for making you feel like you have to put up with “shit in order to listen to and participate in the conversation.” I do agree with you that we are all, in our own way, “trying to do the right thing.” And, yes, that includes Anson Burlingame, as hard as that is for some readers of this blog to process. And because we are all trying to do the right thing we tend to get passionate about it at times. I plead guilty to that. I am still so bothered by “president” Tr-mp that I get heated when people try to tell me it was “corporate Democrats” who derailed Bernie’s candidacy and who made Tr-mp’s tainted victory possible. No. That’s not true.

Image result for bernie sanders and tom perezHillary Clinton won the popular vote. The Democratic Party platform was Bernie-approved. What happened was that not enough people, particularly working class voters in crucial states who had previously voted for Obama, understood what a Tr-mp win would really mean. In some cases they believed his populist lies and voted for him. In other cases they assumed he would lose and stayed home. But in too many cases they believed that Hillary Clinton was corrupt and untrustworthy. And some of them believed she was corrupt and untrustworthy because Bernie Sanders told them so. Thus, I confess that still burns my ass. But I could get over that if it weren’t for the fact that when I listen to Bernie and some of his supporters talk about the Democratic Party these days, in much the same way they talked about Hillary Clinton, I think about how such talk brought us Agent Orange. And I think about how such talk will keep him in power.

Duane

 

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13 Comments

  1. Here, here.

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  2. So — I think I’m flattered that you’d send something out on my behalf. I appreciate your work. Always. But this wasn’t necessary. I’m still going to show up and read with interest everything you write. “Belittle” might have been the wrong word. Don’t worry about it. You’re not at fault. We just don’t agree on everything.
    Much of this post doubles down on your surety that Bernie cost Hillary the election. He’s too self-righteous for you. In the primary he pointed out Hillary’s numerous flaws. He’s unrealistic. Reread this post and see how much room you find for an opinion unlike your own. It’s okay. It’s how we all roll.
    You seem to alternately beg for — and then deny the need for party purity. The reality is that’s what all Democrats want — both things. We’re funny that way. Nevah gonna change. That becomes a plus when welcoming Independents into the fold.
    I think we should look for common ground and move on beyond the plea (these last 2 blogs) for some sort of “standard” Democratic Party message. We’re for democracy. We’re for all sorts of people. I think your expecting me to get you — and my expecting you to get me is a depressing waste of time. It doesn’t serve either of us or the Democratic Party or the citizens who are being screwed over by Tr-mp.
    The tent lives. It’s a tent without walls. Room for you. Room for me. Room for Hillary. Room for Bernie.

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    • You’re right. Plenty of room. And we don’t have to “get” each other except in the sense you mentioned. And I like your emphasis on how the people are “being screwed over by Tr-mp.” I just wish Democrats, and those who want to remake the party from the outside, would spend most of their time focusing on Tr-mp, not on what is wrong with the party. In the end, people will vote for or against what they perceive Tr-mp has done, and, as far as I’m concerned, we should not spend a lot of time being introspective as a party (like the GOP did after the 2012 election, which turned out to be worthless), but spend more time pointing out the screwing you mentioned. Tr-mp proved that most people don’t pay attention to the details of policy proposals or ideological purity. He will, by 2018, have a record he and his GOP friends will have to defend. That’s where our focus should be. Peace to you, my friend.

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    • King Beauregard

       /  May 3, 2017

      “The tent lives. It’s a tent without walls. Room for you. Room for me. Room for Hillary. Room for Bernie.”

      Does Bernie feel there’s room in the tent for anyone whose priorities differ from his? All evidence is that he does not.

      Which would be okay-ish if he were actually right. But single payer failed in his own state just months before he hit the campaign trail, he is a supporter of MIC pork like the F-35, he shows undue deference to the NRA, and it turns out the FBI has been investigating his wife for something much closer to malfeasance than a mail server. And his understanding of black America seems to come strictly from watching “Good Times” reruns.

      Also, I’m offended by Bernie’s blithe dismissal of “identity politics”. Yeah, white guys have it rough out there — not making as much money as they should — but people who AREN’T white guys wish that were the worst of their problems. True story: I got stopped for speeding some weeks back, and I didn’t have to worry about what strategy was least likely to get me shot. I also never had to fight for the right to marry Queen King Beauregard. I’ve never had to worry about becoming pregnant either. Yeah I could dismiss all of that as “special interest groups” … but when you get right down to it, white guys are a minority too, we just happen to be the most special interest group of all.

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  3. Anonymous

     /  April 28, 2017

    Duane,

    There are many Democratic voters that don’t share your blaming of Bernie for Hillary’s loss. These are loyal Democrats that despite seeing that she was very qualified, realized the toxicity of her persona, from decades of media investigation and attacks from them add to that the endless investigations by the GOP delegations. Hillary’s inability to “speak from the heart” or meaningfully discredit accusations that she was not greedy and self-serving in giving the Wall Street speeches prior to the election. You certainly know each and every GOP nominee would be hitting on that regardless of Bernie’s logical questioning.

    We discussed this and other problems we had with Hillary’s nomination i.e.Kissinger ties, etc…prior to the election in this blog, but ultimately she was the nominee and we loyally voted for her. To at this late date blame Bernie for her loss is not accurate in our opinion, the general public was disgusted with politicians and any agent of change was desired and elected by the GOP, although he wasn’t in any way a Republican. It wasn’t misogyny, or racism, I hope that resulted in people voting for this change, I would blame this as the reason voters went against an establishment candidate.

    You have placed little blame in the loss to Hillary, while it is certainly due, as many of her “privacy attempts” in the e-mails that Bernie and the rest of us were certainly sick of hearing about. You know know who I blame for Trump’s election, the fucking press. They have a duty to citizens to inform them of a candidate’ mental defects, illicit business dealings, sordid character exhibitions, and not try to make a damn horse race out of it, while the future of our country is in the hands of a maniac. No essay will change my opinion on that, so I’m unsure why you persist in blaming Bernie. If you vote for progressive values, then we are more alike than different and that is all that matters to me.

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    • The press, of course, played a significant role in what happened. I have written many times about that. And no doubt there was a problem with the Clinton campaign. After all, they lost the Electoral College, which was the only game in town. The only reason I persist with the Bernie critique is because Bernie persists with his critique of the party, which I think can do us real damage. But even though we will always disagree on Bernie’s role in the loss, as to your last, perfectly placed, statement, I can say a hardy “Amen.” Peace, my friend.

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  4. ansonburlingame

     /  April 29, 2017

    To all,

    Other than Jim Wheeler, I suspect I have been reading and commenting on this blog site longer than most, coming up on ten years now. The last several blogs herein have been a good discussion between Duane and others that are farther to the left, at least in my view. It has been a good discussion as all you liberals, progressives, European style socialist set your various stakes in the ground to defend your advocacy for various Dems, while at the same time demean as best you can anyone on the right as ………

    Some of you don’t understand, perhaps, the uphill battle Duane must fight, locally. Jasper County may be one of the “most far right” counties in America. While still posting my own blog I became engaged in a couple of “local matters”. What a fight that became along with my disgust for some that viciously opposed me, to the point that my facebook page, my email and my blog were “hacked”, etc. I had classmates from college that defriended me because “that does not sound like you Anson, but…….” Welcome to red neck territory, “underbellies” as I referred to them, publicly.

    The “local columnist” referred to by Duane is probably one that was ultimately banned from this blog because of extreme disagreement with Duane, et al herein. His columns in the Globe, our local newspaper, remain Tea Party “right” as well. For reasons that I understand, Duane now seldom if ever posts columns in the local newspaper as well. He, Duane, is “too far left” for many in this area. As well Duane never that I have seen engages in “local politics”, a mistake that I made several years ago.

    Of course Duane advocates positions far too far to the left for my tastes, on national and international affairs. But at least we still “talk”, only herein these days. But he at least recognizes that Bernie will drive the Democratic Party so far to the left, all the way to European style socialism, that “your” party will lose touch with anyone even thinking about hovering near the “center” of American politics today.

    Make no mistake, both parties are in danger of, or already have, reached that point. The “Bernie side” of the Dems is equal to the Freedom Caucus of the GOP these days. Had Dem won both houses of Congress and WH I suspect their attempts to govern might be the same as the GOP’s inability to govern right now, due to intra-party arguments. Imagine what HC or tax reform might look like today if Dems held full WH and Congressional power and how outraged the “other” 50% of the country would be if that were the case.

    Would it be fair to suggest that the Bernie approach to governing would keep about 40% of the country’s support, just as the current insanity of Trump keeps his own 40%, plus or minus. Of course each of those 40 %s think the other is “deplorable, insane, totally out of touch, etc., etc. In fact each of those “camps” wants revolutionary change as well, as Duane points out.

    If 40% of the country, the Tea Party (or Freedom Caucus) thought Obama was a European Socialist, imagine what they would call Bernie, et al. Imagine as well what the Bernie side of Dems would call Cruz, etc. as well. Moving closer to, but still far beyond, the “center”, consider the national reaction to a Hillary or Jeb Bush presidency.

    I of course recognize that I am the lone conservative routinely engaging herein and thus I am ……….. Well if you think I am “bad” come to Joplin and try to hold a political discussion on local, state, national or international affairs. I once was told “you don’t understand Joplin politics”. I said “I have lived here for 15 years. How long does it take, 3 generations, to learn it?”. The reply was “Yes, that’s about right!” You see, I was too much of a centrist, able to agree on some things with liberals, all 100 or so of them in these parts!!

    Hillary lost simply because the nation was tired of Obama’s push to the left, too far and too fast. Trump campaigned to the right, the hard right and now he is stuck trying to govern. Remember if you can about 6 months ago the nation thought ACA was “nuts” by a margin above 60%. Now that they have had a taste of ACA change about 53% think ACA is just fine with them. Just imagine HC reform, or tax reform for that matter, if the Freedom Caucus had its way, or conversely Bernie had his way. Either one would be real revolution in American politics and I abhor both approaches.

    One thing you will probably get from Trump is more “fickleness”, subject to change at a moments notice. I am sure he would burn down the house of the Freedom Caucus right now, just as Hillary would be sick and tired of Bernie’s constant leftward pressure if she was in the WH.

    Almost ten years ago (I was in my mid-60’s) my wife and I love RVing, traveling the country for months on end. Two cities drove me nuts, Dallas and Atlanta, because of traffic. My solution was “nuclear weapons”. Just clear out the whole mess and start over. Today, in my mid-70’s, I sometimes think the solution to today’s politics is the same, to hell with it and let’s start all over.

    Anyone think we could write a new Constitution today? Why bother Dems will say as “we can get the courts to do it for us”. GOPers would kill each other trying to write a new one, one being about 10 pages long and the other side wanting the equivalent length of our current tax codes to do so!!

    Let’s see, General. How about, “We the people of the United States demand life, liberty and happiness for all and the government is responsible for achieving just that for anyone living in
    America today”.

    Anson

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    • Anson,

      First, let’s get something straight for all the readers who may not have been around way back when. That creepy Globe columnist was not banned from this blog “because of extreme disagreement with Duane, et al herein.” Disagreement, extreme or otherwise, is not what got him banned. For the millionth time, it was a follow-up comment he made after I had spent an hour or so researching information in responding to one of his original comments on a post I had made. His follow-up comment, after I had done all the work responding to him, was something like this: I just wanted you to waste your time. That’s what got him banned. He is not a serious thinker, not to mention a decent person (at least in my dealings with him), nor is he a good writer. But he got banned because he took perverse pleasure in wasting my time when I treated his claims seriously.

      Second, you’re right. I seldom involve myself in local politics. I just don’t have the time for it right now and, to tell you the truth, I don’t find that I can get accurate coverage of what is really going on in the local newspaper or on the local TV news stations or, God forbid, on that turd-producing radio station KZRG. The Turner Report does provide a little insight from time to time, but I can’t stand wading through the many press releases he publishes from right-wing politicians, presented as if they are “news.” Those releases are the worst part of his site and mostly keep me from checking in all that often.

      Third, you’re analysis of why Hillary lost the election doesn’t fit the facts. The nation wasn’t tired of “Obama’s push to the left.” The nation wasn’t even tired of Obama. Hillary Clinton actually won the election, if the popular vote mattered in our system. She got more votes. And she got more votes running on a platform that, at least domestically, was more liberal than the one Obama ran on both times.

      And to say Tr-mp campaigned to the “hard right” only tells part of the story. On a couple of issues, he sounded like Bernie Sanders. On trade, on the safety net, it was almost impossible to differentiate his positions from Sanders’. It happened to be those issues that saved his sorry ass in the Electoral College. He conned a bunch of working class voters, mostly white, many of them union voters, many of them former Obama voters, in three crucial states. And he barely won those states.

      Finally, I do want to say something good about your response here and, to some extent, your responses over the many years we have interacted. You are, at times, willing to step outside the normal political box that so many on the right are trapped in around these parts. We don’t agree on much, but the reason we can talk at all is because I have always sensed a willingness on your part to at least listen to the critique of your friends on the right, sometimes with you joining in on that critique, even if we almost never agree on the solution to any of the problems we discuss. And I think you sense that I am sometimes willing to critique wrong-headed ideas on the left, again, even though your critiques take you to a different place.

      My guess is that your wife, who you have said is a left-leaning thinker, has had a mitigating influence on you, at least in terms of listening to people like me and rejecting some (but not all, unfortunately) of the crazy shit coming from your side of the divide. Thus, even though I have received a lot of flack over the years for continuing to engage with you, I do appreciate the fact that you do often represent a different kind of conservatism than what I usually find when I talk to other right-wingers around here. And, speaking only for myself, I appreciate that fact and will continue to engage with you as long as it takes in order to convince you of the errors of your ways.:)

      Duane

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  5. Anonymous

     /  April 29, 2017

    Anson,

    I recall your blog and when you shut it down after banning coherent commenters, but not the right reverend Martin Lindstet, with his maniacal ramblings. I recall also you giving Duane grief for banning Limbaugh wannabe, Geoffy from his blog for asinine remarks. I recall you referred to David Wallace, Mark Rohr, CJ Huff, and Mike “tornado mayor” Woolston as heroes of the Joplin tornado. Let’s examine why you were given so much grief over this proclamation.

    Wallace-Bajjali filed for bankruptcy, and was sued for money he conned from Joplin taxpayers and many others. Mark Rohr was terminated after sworn testimony of a city employee that he assaulted his wife, and a separate instance of his daughter making a 911 call for police assistance when he beat her pregnant mother. Rohr was fired from League City, Texas a couple of years later. CJ Huff was forced into “retirement” actually bought out of his contract a year and a half ahead of time, after leaving taxpayers with over $10 million dollars of lawsuits to pay for his incompetency. Woolston took the cowards way out and resigned to avoid an ethics hearing and was/is being investigated by the FBI.

    The ridicule you received from claiming that you sat down with Wallace, asked him pertinent questions, and looked into his eyes and determined that he was telling you the truth about his motives/efforts was well deserved. This and other statements you made regarding your expertise in education, which was limited to reading “The Bell Curve” and substitute teaching gigs, was destroyed by professional teachers made aware of these statements by the Turner Report’s Randy Turner. Much of the “redneck” aggression you cite was simply people disagreeing with you based on the own experiences with these supposed heroes.

    It wasn’t that the nation had a problem “moving too far to the left” during the Obama years, Hillary was more centrist than Obama. I am unaware of any progressive policy cited by Duane in his blog that you have agreed is a good idea. Please cite any example. I cannot understand why anyone would have hacked your blog, Facebook, or your email over any such discussions on your blog. Your response usually consisted of avoiding questions, and rambling about something that had nothing to do with an answer to the commenter. That said, I do enjoy your comments for the humor in conservative logic.

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    • Dang! Snap! Zowie! That was delicious, Anonymous. “Please sir, I want some more.”

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    • I want to butt in again and apologize that WordPress, for reasons unknown to me, sent your comment to moderation. That shouldn’t happen and I should check it more often. My bad. Thanks for writing this “historical” account, though!

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  6. ansonburlingame

     /  May 1, 2017

    Typically, I get trashed by another “Anonymous”.

    Joplin, after the tornado, had a clean slate to rebuild 1/3rd of the city. Look what we got instead. I admired Rohr and Wallace for their willingness to do something different. They failed because ……… The only thing different in Joplin now is one new hospital that cost the city little if anything and a new library where the old one was unaffected by the tornado. Everything else was rebuild with insurance money, EXCEPT some $4 Million of a baseball field. How well did that work out? How much debt is the city carrying now, including the $16 Million still owed to R-8 schools???

    Public education in this country is a mess, pure and simple. It is the single greatest national security issue facing America today, our inability to educate our children to the standards needed to succeed in today’s world. Huff knew that and tried to do something about it. Look what happened. Anyone herein think Joplin Public Schools have improved much at all over the last 10 years. Give any junior in HS an arithmetic test, no algebra, no geometry, just add, subtract, multiply and divide whole numbers (up to three digits), fractions, percentages and decimal numbers. Include negative numbers in that test as well. Do NOT allow the use of a calculator. Around 50% will flat out flunk it, pure and simple. Ask them to read a newspaper article and write a one page summary of what information the article provided. As well ask them to read an editorial and critique the views expressed therein, critically. Do this for HS students only and see what you get.

    For a “final exam” ask every graduating senior from JHS to write a three page essay explaining where they want to be in five years and how they intend to get there. Probably 75% of such essays will be “pipe dreams” with little or no substance therein. Many, many Americans today can tell you loud and clear what they want. But then ask them how to get it and see what you get back!!

    I would also encourage you to give such a “final exam” to all the teachers in R-8 and see what you get back. Most will tell you what they want “society” (or “government”) to do something FOR them, not what they will do for themselves. Hell, give all the math teachers in JHS a MAPS test and see how many achieve “proficient” or “advanced”. Give’em all an ACT in math and see how many score over 20???

    “Testing” teachers is like asking a Dem how to pay for all the “free stuff” they demand for we the people!! If we just tax the rich more then schools, HC, you name it will be just fine!!!

    Anson

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    • Ben Field

       /  May 2, 2017

      Anson,

      You tickle me with your disdain for anonymous comments. You do realize King Beauregard isn’t a king, and that the Generalist isn’t a General don’t you? Yet you respond to them and not anonymous, lol. If it makes so much difference to you, I will tell you my name…Ben Field. You recall me, as I am one that you banned from your blog. Not for profanity, not for incoherence, but because you couldn’t sell me the nonsense you were peddling. Understand this, the city manager or master developer has no say in how city residents rebuild, none, not at all. There are building codes and zoning which determines such, not would-be Kings and their dreams for a city. Any man like Rohr that abuses his wife is beneath contempt which accounts for his being fired twice in three years.

      The $16 million you refer that is still owed to the school is nonsense. Your boy CJ, signed off on the TIF district (largest in the state of Missouri) requested by the city, which left the district without the tax income from those properties. He overspent money building the new school even with another $45 million dollar bond issue thrown into the mix. CJ built more than was insured at the time of the event, and was shocked when insurance nor FEMA would pay for it. A man without a doctorate knows better than such foolishness. Insurance doesn’t pay you to build back better, just what you lost. He caused a $9 million dollar lawsuit against taxpayers by signing off on expedited labor contract to complete the school by his own deadline.

      It is a given that education needs improvement or there would not be additional credits given to ACT or SAT scores from someone testing in our day, when compared to current test scores. This college entry admission factor sobered me to that reality. I don’t criticize the professionals in their field without offering an alternative. I don’t have the answers, but I am an excellent judge of character when snake oil salesmen tell me that they do. I have a brother, lifetime NRA member, with a 145 IQ that votes straight ticket Republican every year, not because it’s the right thing, but because they are gun friendly. I call him a dumbass and we debate until the cows come home, but he like you, will not see the light.

      I do appreciate Duane’s consistency in his approach to offering commentary on a progressive society which benefits all people, regardless of race, sexual orientation, or religion in this blog. I read your blog to do as you do here, understand what makes the other side think so differently, and I do miss it even though I couldn’t comment if it was still up. I think we can get along, as you are not as vile as Caldwell, belittling teen-age girls or referring to the POTUS as a monkey, because he felt Obama was turning the US into a banana republic. I think Trump is the orange orangutan is this banana republic now, what say you?

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