Archive for private sector

Good economic news... again! Time to impeach! #BlameObama

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economic news recovery

With all the talk of impeachment and GOP lawsuits against President Obama these days, it seemed like a good time to add more fuel to the politically insane fires. Yes, once again we have upbeat economic news. What's a blogger to do? Why, publish the upbeat economic news, of course.

Let's start with a Fox Biz email alert headline, because I know how you rely heavily on every word uttered by Fox, the most reliable name in economic news:

U.S. Economy Grows at 4% Pace in 2Q

What?! Why I oughta. Please proceed, Fox Biz:

The Commerce Department reports the U.S. economy grew at an annualized pace of 4% in the second quarter, beating Wall Street expectations for a 3% rate.

Oh what do they know... Let's see what the big bad "librul media" has to say about all this good economic news. New York Times, I'm talkin' to you:

The United States economy rebounded heartily in the spring after a dismal winter, the Commerce Department reported on Wednesday, growing at an annual rate of 4 percent from April through June and surpassing economists’ expectations.

In its initial estimate for the second quarter, the government cited a major advance in inventories for private businesses, higher government spending at the state and local level and personal consumption spending as chief contributors to growth. Economists, who had been hoping for a full reversal of the first quarter’s decline, were cheered by the second quarter’s numbers. The consensus forecast for G.D.P. was 3 percent.

“Fantastic,” Douglas Handler, chief United States economist for IHS Global Insight Analysis, said of the second-quarter G.D.P. increase. The bigger-than-expected gain further cemented views that the decrease in America’s overall output during the first quarter was most likely a fluke tied in large part to unusually stormy winter weather and other anomalies.

Huhwha? "Higher government spending at the state and local level"?

Read it and weep, impeachers.

curses foiled again

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"Charter co-locating at our school will harm... our democracy... It will teach my kids that segregation is OK."

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public school sinking cartoon via Philly.com

We enrolled our twins in public schools and, for a short time, in a private school. The reason we switched to a private elementary school for two years is that our neighborhood school lost funding for art and music programs, and my kids needed them badly (as do all kids, but our boys were going through some very tough times, and drawing and painting were outlets we couldn't do without).

As soon as they became old enough to enter middle school, back to public school they went. We never looked back.

Analise Dubner has written a lengthy, substantive blog about her own child and the decisions that her family had to make regarding public v. private v. charter schools, and the bias against public schools.

Here are a few excerpts (bolding mine), but please link over to the entire must-read post:

My husband and I put our son into private school, even though we couldn't afford it. We did this without even looking at our local Elementary.  [...]

It was a fine school, yes, we liked it there, liked the teachers, made a few lifelong friends, our kid did well... we promptly burned through our savings, and just like that, it was over... So, we girded ourselves and walked bravely down to the School Of Ill Repute (known to others as Micheltorena Elementary), and we took the Open House tour. And ... 
...we @#$% loved it. [...]

What if I told you that you can actually take your local school and make it what you want it to be? I know that's not what you believe, not what you've been LED to believe. [...]

Turns out you can teach your kids just fine and still take that ridiculous test. I just pack a lunch for my kids, and we find ways to work around or with the rules we've got. I talk to my kids, help them with their projects, and I know they are engaged, smart and curious. That's the real litmus test.

We all know that there has been a movement in this country for the last 20 years to dismantle the very idea of public education and that it has led us to a place where a privately-run, unaccountable, sometimes-corporate Charter School is being touted as the answer. Some established, proven Charters (like many Public schools) are perfectly good schools, but if you've done any real homework, you have to know that these legions of new schools are just as likely to fail your kids as any public school, and that, often, these untried schools are (by law) allowed to paw through public school assets just to get started. [...]

[M]any Charters have younger, inexperienced teachers using untested "progressive" techniques created as lures for enrollment. So many parents end up as 'Charter-Hoppers' because these untested programs fail their children. I know you want to believe that 'new' is better because obviously 'old' has failed, right? I've got some shocking news. My son's 4th grade uses 'progressive' project-based learning techniques. I know! Public school! What-what?! [...]

This isn't about a bunch of local parents barking territorially at intruders. The Charter co-locating at our school will harm our kids, harm our school, harm our democracy. I'm sorry to put it so bluntly and so melodramatically, but that's what I believe. It doesn't just compete for enrollment, jeopardize our Elementary's future, take our classrooms, or bog down our Principal's already-stretched time with administrative haggling over resources; it will teach my kids lessons I only want them to read and puzzle over in history books - that segregation is OK. 

What did she just say? Why use such a loaded word? Because what we are seeing now is precisely what segregation is. This Charter, like so many others have done already in this very city, wants to put a dividing line down the middle of our school grounds so their kids aren't contaminated by our kids - in direct opposition to the very ideals this country is supposedly built on.

Just go read the rest of this piece, please. And then share it with as many people as you can.

By the way, this isn't a political piece, there is no mention of unions, guns, or religion. We've covered that in previous posts here at TPC.

Added: Here is a comment left by the author in response to one of her commenters:

Thank you so much for your reasonable comments. I KNOW you just want what's best for your kid and you think you found it. But I do want you to consider the consequences of this Charter's actions. I know you love what the CWC curriculum has to offer, but what if the price is too high to get it? That's all I'm really asking you to consider. The presence of this Charter at our school means: 1) Susanna has to spend time she doesn't have wrangling over resources, 2) we can no longer use the rooms (that we are using) that the Charter would take, 3) competition for much-needed enrollment at a VITAL time in our growth, 4) jeopardizing the dual language program we had intended to start next year, and, (to me) most importantly, 5) creating a sense on our campus, amongst our kids, that the Charter kids are different...sectioned off... BETTER than our kids. Why do we think this? We've already heard all the talk about how the Charter wants to hire security to "protect" their kids from ours. That the CWC was considering building a FENCE around the Bungalows they mean to occupy.Other co-locating Charters post teachers outside the bathrooms to make sure the public school kids don't go inside while a Charter kid is using them. Teachers instruct kids not to speak to each other.

So, Jane, please, honestly. Is that not segregation? You want to put your kid in that? How good does a curriculum have to be to make you want to create that kind of place for children? Ours... or yours?

And from another of her comments:

Healthy competition? Sure, compete away. But, would you consider it healthy competition if someone who dreamed of opening their own sandwich shop were to walk into an existing sandwich shop, steal their sandwiches and then sell them to the shop's customers out of the shop's bathroom?

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Romney's Bain investment record: Three times the bankruptcies of fed investments

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Cartoon via Lalo Alcaraz

Your Daily Dose of BuzzFlash at Truthout, via my pal Mark Karlin:

Jon Stewart lacerated the myth of Romney's alleged expertise as a venture capitalist the other night. (See video here.) Quite simply, under Mitt's leadership, Bain Capital had a worse investment record than the federal government's backing of alternative energy companies (e.g., Solyndra).  

In fact, Romney's record at Bain showed him picking firms that went into bankruptcy at three times the rate of the fed record.

Stewart started by quoting part of Romney's "closing argument" to the American voters:

The government of the United States is not a very good venture capitalist …. [Obama] doesn't just like picking winners and losers, he likes picking losers.  Half of the ones [alternative energy companies that the government has invested in under Obama] have gone bankrupt.

[...]

Whoa! So Romney's accusation of a 50 percent bankruptcy rate as a result of Department of Energy financial support (in loans and subsidies) to alternative energy firms is at best actually 8 percent. [...]

So that's 8% failure for government investments in alternative energy firms vs. a 22% bankruptcy record under Mitt Romney's leadership at Bain. [...]

When Romney's bankruptcy record, as he ironically promotes himself as a "job creator," is just about three times the rate of Obama's as president, it's clear the "job creator" is really (particularly when combined with his slash and burn labor strategies) a job destroyer.  He's also a liar, and his dissembling is meant to hide one of the greatest myths of the campaign: that private investment is more effective at stimulating the economy, when Romney's own record as the CEO of Bain Capital shows that it isn't.

Please read the entire post here.

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Quickie: Don't tell the GOP, but Chris Christie defended the Big Bad Federal Government

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Link.

Today's Quickie:

Chris Christie reminds us why the Big Bad Federal Government isn't so big and bad after all. In fact, it can save lives. Wait. Isn't protecting U.S. citizens exactly what it's supposed to do? Why yes. Yes it is.

Via NorthJersey.com:

“The gas situation should be figured out in the next 24 to 48 hours,” he said. “It’s not just a supply issue, it is a power issue and we were not frankly, in the private sector, prepared for this widespread loss of power.

That was today's Quickie. Was it good for you?

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Video- Fox's Carlson Pushes Myth Public Sector Is "The Highest Growing Part Of The Entire Workforce"

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What would the start to the week be without some of Ms. Gretchen's knowledge to share? Via.

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"The absurdity of these right-wing attacks is straight out of Monty Python"

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Today's L.A. Times letter to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re "Parsing Obama's 'fine' mess," Opinion, June 12

Under President Reagan and both President Bushes, public sector employment increased, softening the economic effects of the recessions that occurred during each administration. If President Obama had the same help given to the Republican presidents (instead of cutting public sector jobs), unemployment would be almost a full percentage point lower.

Meanwhile, in the private sector, more jobs have been created under Obama in the last 27 months than during George W. Bush's two terms, the stock market has rebounded and corporations have earned record profits.

The absurdity of these right-wing attacks is straight out of Monty Python, with GOP talking heads crowded around a critically injured patient (the economy) and accusing the doctor (Obama) of gross negligence. But every time the patient opens his eyes and mumbles "I'm not dead yet," one of the nurses (Congress) hits him over the head and knocks him out again.

Lon Shapiro

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VIDEO- Memo to Mitt Romney: Federal government DOES fund teachers, firefighters, police

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June 8:

“Instead, he [Pres. Obama] wants to add more to government. He wants another stimulus. He wants to hire more government workers. He says we need more firemen, more policeman, more teachers.”

June 12:

"That’s a very strange accusation. Of course, teachers and firemen and policemen are hired at the local level and also by states. The federal government doesn’t pay for teachers, firefighters or policemen. So obviously that’s completely absurd. He’s got a new idea, though, and that is to have another stimulus and to have the federal government send money to try and bail out cities and states. It didn’t work the first time. It certainly wouldn’t work the second time."

Well, not quite, as Ezra Klein so eloquently explained here. And Think Progress drives it home:

Replacing the lost public sector jobs would reduce unemployment by a full percentage point and make the economic recovery stronger.

What's "absurd" is Willard's latest Etch A Sketch Moment. But wait! Not only did he flip flop again, he's dead wrong about the federal government's role in funding teachers, firefighters, and police officers.

They are hired at the local level, but the federal government provides much of the funding, recruiting, and training.

Think Progress lists several examples to prove the point, but here are one each:

Teachers

Firefighters

Police

  • Community Policing Development: funds to advance the practice of community policing in law enforcement agencies through training and technical assistance

So he's a hypocritical flip-flopper as well as completely uninformed. No wonder he's the candidate of choice for Republicans.

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