Weekend Open Thread

“Small timers get into it and ruin it for everyone.”

–John Dillinger

30 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. davebarnes says:

    October 16, 1793 – French Revolution: Queen Marie Antoinette is executed.

  2. kwtree says:

    Leadership Institute  is training and funding school board disruptors. Leadership Program of the Rockies, an Independence Institute offshoot, shares goals, funders, and resources with LI.

    Koch Brothers, Prince/Devos/Blackwater money, and other dark money groups are funding and fostering a reign of terror to intimidate election clerks and school board members. These citizens, often volunteers in the case of school board members, have a nonpartisan mission to make small-d democracy work. This is exactly why they are being attacked.

    Become informed, and vote every election, every time. 

     

     

    • JohnInDenver says:

      Do you suppose they checked the archives and are recycling the materials from the school board emphasis of 2011, '13 and '15?  Conservatives were then going to run school boards to provide a "new focus on improving academic achievement, fair funding, expansion of educational choices, and fiscal responsibility."

      JeffCo Board of Education recall and general elections of 2015 turned into a national story.

    • ParkHill says:

      Here is some text from a flyer for PSD school board election in Fort Collins, mailed to me, a registered Democrat. What gets me is the underlying tone of fear and threat. But they don't actually spell it out; more like stating some negative points to imply there's something wrong or nefarious.

      The right-wing has gotten very good at micro-targeting and dog whistles. The same flyer to a Republican would likely hit more specifically on hot-button issues. It would be interesting to see if that's true.

      My smell test makes me guess that these are right-wingers.

      "Endorsed by PSD teachers."

      Jim Borkish, Kristen Draper, Carolyn Reed, and Jessica Zamora

      "WE JUST CAN'T TRUST BRADY BEALL, ERIC DOBBS, JEANNETTE GAITER AND BRANDI ASPINALL WITH OUR SCHOOLS"

      SOME WOULD:

      Create unsafe learning environments for students and staff, needlessly exposing them to deadly harm.

      Push our best teachers out of PSD

      Create inequity, with some students having unlicensed teachers when others have professional ones

      Meddle in student curriculum despite having no expertise in education.

       

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        Park Hill: I got a flyer in JeffCo with the exact same wording, except that PSD was changed to JeffCo and candidate names were changed.

        Paula Reed, Danielle Varda, Mary Parker are endorsed by JeffCo teachers. We just can't trust Jeff Wilhite, Theresa Shelton, and Kathy Miks with our schools. With the same four reasons.

        At the bottom, Paid for by Students Deserve Better, Cynthia Dreher, Registered Agent. Not authorized by any candidate.

        If one does a browser inquiry on Ms. Dreher (I don't have time today to do that), one might find out what her connections are. There also is no campaign website listed for the three women.

        • kwtree says:

          CHB and Park Hill:

          Website :  https://www.forjeffcokids.com// for Varda, Reed and Parker. 
          This info should be included on any Jeffco school board flyering you get – probably, though, the flyers you both got were from an “issue committee” which tends to publish negative and oppo research on opposing candidates. 

          I did look up Brady Beall, candidate for the Poudre School District, and found this interview by of the Coloradoan. Beall blows a few dog whistles that he may be pushing an anti”critical race theory” agenda. 

          So does Jeanette Gaiter, a homeschooler who wants parents to be more active participants in curriculum, and who decries “social education” emphasizing “diversity and inclusion”. She was also interviewed by the Coloradoan.

          Also, children are not mini-soldiers, and you can’t run a school like the military, which comprises Beall’s expertise. A very few students with severe behavior issues may benefit from that highly structured model; most will not.
          But the “get tough” military / police model is a glide path to more minority kids in the school-to-prison pipeline, if they won’t stand to attention, or do quiet seatwork for hours.
          .

          In Jeffco, the main difference between the Varda-Reed-Parker slate and the other candidates is their approach to neighborhood schools.  The Jeffco Kid’s slate candidates want to improve neighborhood schools so that low and moderate income families can send their kids confidently to an excellent school in the community. 

          Their opponents ( Wilhite, Miks, Johnson, and Shelton) want to keep the escape routes open so that wealthier families can send kids to charter or choice schools and avoid the neighborhood schools. This model has kept schools segregated by race and class for decades. Charter schools are whiter and richer because parents can afford to take students to school every day. Very few provide buses. .

          Miks also suggests that parents should dictate curriculum. So no sex ed classes or multicultural education allowed. Some of these yahoos want the Holocaust curriculum modified to show “both sides” of the Holocaust story. 
           

          Remember that there is a battle on: Bannon’s forces against education that is science based and inclusive of diverse viewpoints. Some of these school board candidates seem to be normal business people and PTA moms; but they’ll let these little clues slip that they’re aligned with Bannon’s agenda. Watch the debates and forums. Become informed and vote accordingly. 

          • ParkHill says:

            It's all about the marketing; especially to low-information voters.

            And, school board elections are by definition, low-info elections.

            Jeffco and Larimer counties are fairly liberal places. A hard-core RWNJ slate would stand no chance if their positions were apparent. Thus, they have to hide behind dog-whistles and pretend to be something else.

            Obviously, these flyers were pumped out by a Republican think tank with focus group tested messages, and offered up to multiple districts. I know that their micro-targeting strategies are extremely well defined, and I bet that more hard-core messages are being sent to the mailing lists they've generated by all the failed Polis recall attempts.

      • Voyageur says:

        Beall, Dobbs, Aspinall and Gaiter are all endorsed by the Larimer County GQP.  Beware.

        Be very aware.

        Your flyers probably came from teacher union candidates, given the identical language in chb’s flyer. Given your portside tilt, Parkie, I think they may be the best you’ll get.

        • ParkHill says:

          Thanks. It's still a weird, insinuating ad.

          • kwtree says:

            I got both mailers = the official one from the Parker / Varda / Reed "ForJeffcoKids" site, and the Jeffco Kids First  site for Wilhite, Shelton, and Miks. The main differences between the two slates are that the Parker/ Varda / Reed slate aims to improve neighborhood schools and increase opportunities there, rather than providing off-ramps and escape routes for parents. So both flyers mentioned here are from the Parker/Varda/Reed JeffcoKids slate. One is the official one; the one with the oppo research is from an issue committee.

            As far as the Jeffco Kids First Wilhite / Shelton / Miks slate, their main policies seem to be anti-vax and anti-mask, pro-charter, and  pro- "parent control of curriculum". They're even anti-COVID testing, which is pretty extreme. I mean, how many parents really don't want to know if their child's class and team-mates are spreading COVID?

            Currently, the Jeffco Schools policy for 12-17 year olds is "Get vaxxed, or get tested weekly". The oposition slate is against it. Theresa Shelton complains about weird rashes kids get from masks – to which,public health experts say, "Wash your face, wash the mask, pick non-irritating mask material, and apply moisturizer as necessary."

            Shelton and Miks are also strong advocates that parents should have ultimate decisions about school curriculum. The RWNJ  tantrum about  the imaginary teaching of "critical race theory" would have teachers second-guessing every time they assign a slave narrative, or a biography of Cesar Chavez, or a book about the Holocaust. The latest RWNJ rallying cry is that teachers must not "prefer one race over another", meaning that, in their view, white kids are being victimized by honest discussions of history.

            Usually, RWNJs prefer that there is no acceptance of queer kids, sexuality, and gender ambivalence. No books about gay people at any age; no "preferred pronouns" for people questioning their assigned gender; no discussion of contraception nor abortion in "Health" classes. Kids already get to "opt out" of those discussions.

            If parents get to dictate curriculum, it opens up a can of nasty worms and handicaps teachers.

            In regard to charter schools, Jeffrey Wilhite has been past president of the Colorado League of Charter Schools. He has advocated for "equity" in allocating tax resources to charter schools. They won that legislative battle; however, there is no "equity" for teachers or students in charter schools. Non-unionized teachers in charter schools are treated like crap; they are expendable, prone to being dismissed at whim, with little or no time to plan. They are often uncredentialed or emergency credentialed.

            Kids do get specialized curriculum, and often smaller classes; however, charter schools tend to be richer and whiter than their equivalent neighborhood schools, because of lack of transportation.  Parents that can afford to get to work late  can drive their kid to a charter school. Everybody else is stuck with their neighborhood school. This does not include public "option" schools, such as Warren Tech, that  take students for half days out of public high schools. These do include a bus ride.

            Chalkbeat interviewed all seven candidates ; that voter guide article is here.

  3. Diogenesdemar says:

    Today is probably not. . .

    . . . going to be the day when Moderatus gets something right.

  4. MichaelBowman says:

    This is a good resource that drops into my Inbox daily. It’s no surprise that we often suffer with messaging problems.  We’ve allowed Republicans to frame issues for decades starting with Karl Rove defining the political meaning of “pro-life”. That’s morphed into “patriots” smashing cars in protest while their very own party didn’t deliver a single vote for the latest stimulus, fighting minimum wage increases (for decades), chid care tax credits, infrastructure. Locally they’ve fought renewable energy investments, transitioning food systems, P-14 public education, etc.  At its root this is a fight for a robust 21st century economy going toe-to-toe with a mindsets baked in failed, last-century bravado wrapped around a warped notion of “freedom”.   

    The Liberal Patriot 

  5. davebarnes says:

    October 17, 1777: During the American Revolutionary War, British General John Burgoyne surrenders at Saratoga, New York.

  6. Duke Cox says:

    I am getting a little miffed that no one in the news media seems to want to mention that this shipping clusterfuck is a direct result of off-shoring by greedy corporations. American workers have been taking it on the chin for the last 30 years.

    Chickens coming home to roost.

    PS…Has ABC News become the new Fox News? Martha Radditz pisses me off every time she sits in for George.

    • Genghis says:

      The "center" has moved WAY to the right over the past 3-4 decades. Most haven't noticed, and most of those who have don't care. So long as they can get a formaldehyde-smelling pressboard dresser that'll fall apart in a month (hopefully before a tip-over injures or kills one of their children), it's all good. The supply chains set up by the uber rich are minimalist as hell, dependent on everything working exactly as planned every minute of day. When they don't, people need someone to blame. The liberal (lol) mainstream media, their lips wrapped lovingly around the wangs of the uber rich, are more than happy to give them a target, the Dems.

      • Duke Cox says:

        So many of them live in fear of being seen as "favoring" the libs. The one thing reporters care most about is access, and you can bet the RWNJ use that to intimidate. Access is one of the most sought after but least talked about commodities in politics.

      • ParkHill says:

        It is kind of interesting in a karmic-mother-nature-hurricane way.

        You have a finely tuned system, you whack it with the Covid hammer, then watch how the perturbations reverberate. Wish I was an economics grad student looking for a thesis topic!

        One thing it shows is why it is useful to pay laid-off workers to hang tight until things get better. Dock workers and truckers were shut down by Covid restrictions, but now they are needed.

        One other point is that while the personal services (travel, hotels, restaurants, massage therapists, hair-stylists, etc) were shut-down the consumer economy never stopped cooking. To this day people are buying up hard goods like crazy, adding to the huge demand on Asian producers.

    • MattC says:

      That sounds right – find the math and it will get covered. 

      Some six-figure crane operator working a 35 hour week who now has to work a 45 hr week is not going to resonate.

      Ps: Martha is an inferior political tv host. 

       

       

  7. unnamed says:

    That Dillinger quote exemplifies why he needed an Escape Plan

  8. MichaelBowman says:

    Who knew there were children who needed to learn about the thrice-married *ussy grabber? 
     

  9. kwtree says:

    It's propaganda, of course, not history.

    Ideal for homeschooled kids, whose families hate mask and vaccine mandates enough that they're willing to take on the task of (mis)educating kids themselves.

    I looked at a couple of the video lesson previews. They're funny, but hardly accurate. For example, I doubt that Columbus made a speech to the Taino people introducing himself, then asked, "And you are?"

    I'm sure some of these Bannon-backed school board candidates would love to replace the standard US history curriculum with these lessons.

     

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