"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Friday, December 20, 2013

2014 Is Going to Be a Great Year for Education

From Salon.com

Exposing the education “reformers’” big lie: Here’s how progressives — and our kids — beat the corporate establishment

A populist uprising is coming in defense of public schools. Are Democrats on the side of Wall Street or the people?

Michelle Rhee, Elizabeth Warren (Credit: AP/Jeff Chiu/Reuters/Jonathan Ernst)
Earlier this month, progressives in the Democratic Party objected vehemently, and rightfully so, to an Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal from a Beltway belief tank called Third Way that declared populism as “disastrous for Democrats.”
The piece specifically attacked Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren who has advocated popular positions on economics, such as expanding Social Security.
For sure, the authors of the piece, Jon Cowan and Jim Kessler, got the factual argument wrong, as Michael Hiltzik so capably explained at the Los Angeles Times.
But getting the facts wrong is not what riled progressives the most.
While the substance of Cowan and Kessler’s argument revolved around Social Security and its supposed insolvency, what likely galled progressives the most was having their ideas called a “left-wing … fantasy” by a faction of the Democratic Party more closely aligned with the financial industry.
In response to Cowan-Kessler, Warren promptly issued a call on big banks to disclose their financial contributions to think tanks like Third Way – a not so subtle suggestion that their aversion to populism is mostly about sticking up for Wall Street.
On Salon, Thom Hartman called Third Way’s analysis an “attack piece” from “corporate Democrat ‘moderate’ types.”

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