Tuesday, July 19, 2016

BREAKING: Trump's Acceptance Speech Leaks!

In light of Melania Trump's plagiarism fiasco, it was certain that the remaining Republican speeches would be heavily scrutinized for similar transgressions. Donald Trump gave his written acceptance speech to his aides to be checked, and some passages have leaked to the media. While the elaborate style of the leaked passages might indicate that some of the words were written by a more eloquent speaker, other passages, as well as the spirit of the words themselves, show that the Donald played a major part in writing it. Here are some of the more significant passages that were leaked.

(Wait for applause to die down. Assume a 5 minute ovation.)

My fellow Republicans and to everyone watching at home. This is indeed a great moment for America. Really great. I'm here to say a few words. As you know, words build bridges into unexplored regions. And I have the best words. The best.

Some people doubt me because I am rich and have a beautiful wife. But people forget that I am also smart. I have a great brain that I am going to use to lead this country. So when you see me and Melania, remember that money glitters, beauty sparkles, and intelligence shines. And we are going to shine, believe me. We'll be the shiniest first couple ever, no contest.

And with my great brain, I am going to make great decisions, you can count on it. Some worry that I have no political experience, but I will get some help. But make no mistake--I will be calling the shots. There must be no majority decisions, but only responsible persons, and the word 'council' must be restored to its original meaning. Surely every man will have advisers by his side, but the decision will be made by one man. And that one man is me. I make the best decisions. For there is one thing we must never forget--the majority will never replace the man. And I am the man, folks.

I know some of you didn't want me to represent you, OK? I know that. But you know what? You are all losers. I said I was going to win from the beginning, and who's smiling now? People may not always believe what you say, but they will believe what you do. And I've done the impossible. I beat 17 other candidates to stand before you today. The leader of genius must have the ability to make different opponents appear as if they belonged to one category. Right, Lyin' Ted? Low Energy Jeb?

Anyway, I'm not here to run people down. I am here to help lead this nation and prevent the disaster this country is becoming, because otherwise, we have no country. The doom of a nation can only be averted by a storm of flowing passion, but only those who are passionate themselves can arouse such passion in others. And I can arouse passion, believe me. Or ask Melania. These tiny hands mean nothing.

And speaking of passion, we must destroy our enemies. Obstacles do not exist to to be surrendered to, but only to be broken. And that's how we have to treat our enemies, folks. We'll defeat our enemies by any means necessary. Success is the only earthly judge of right and wrong. And we will have so much success. You'll be sick of succeeding against our enemies, I can tell you that. We can bring back waterboarding or kill the families of terrorists. Demoralize the enemy from within by surprise, terror, sabotage, assassination. This is the war of the future. The Future under the Donald.

We have to focus like a laser beam against our enemies, such as ISIS. You can only do that with leadership. You know I wrote "The Art of the Deal", right? Well, I'm going to write a new chapter in American history called "The Art of Leadership", because leadership is how we defeat enemies. The art of leadership consists in consolidating the attention of the people against a single adversary and taking care that nothing will split up that attention. That's how we'll win. Strength lies not in defense, but in attack. By fighting off the Islamists, I am doing the Lord's work. I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator. And I am pretty good with God, let me tell you. Otherwise, why did he give me all this money and a hot wife? Who says I am not under the special protection of God? And I will put in a good word for this country with my prayers, which believe me, you'll need.

In conclusion, I want to thank you for this great victory for me and for America. That's all that matters--victory. Sure I told some whoppers to get here, but that doesn't matter now. The victor will never be asked if he told the truth, am I right? And now that I have won the nomination, we must fight like hell for the White House. It is not truth that matters, but victory. We must win and defeat Hillary Clinton.

America needs a leader, and I am that man. For to be a leader means to be able to move the masses. And I am going to move this country to the right. Believe me, and thank you!


MORE BREAKING NEWS! The media ran this speech through Turnitin.com to check for plagiarism. It turns out that it is nearly half plagiarized. The underlined sentences above were all "borrowed".

From Adolph Hitler. Apparently, Trump did read the book of Hitler's speeches he kept by his bedside.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

In Praise of Randi

I never thought I would write a blog post with such a title, except sarcastically. But this time, you have to hand it to Randi. She played a large role in modifying the Democratic platform on education, and in inserting language that makes it clear the Dems are now fully in opposition to closing schools based on test scores, and using test scores to evaluate teachers or unfairly label minority, ELL, and special ed students. It also supports the Opt-Out movement.

The platform now rejects for-profit charter schools, and forces transparency for current charters. It calls for charters to accept a population representative of their neighborhoods, as well as a proportionate number of ELL and special education students. The language also states that charters should be democratically governed--i.e., they will be accountable to the public for their finances and governance.

I've debated for a while if I wanted to discuss whether I think it's a net positive or negative to have Randi, a long time friend of Hillary Clinton, take a position of influence in her administration. Personally, I felt, and now feel strongly, that she will be an asset to the Democrats and education. This platform spits in the face of faux democrat groups like DFER, and Randi had much to do with implementing the language.

If you have any doubts about the strength of these platform ideas, you need look no further than the reaction of Shavar Jeffries of DFER, who said this language is an "unfortunate departure from President Obama's historic education legacy...", to which I can only say, thank heavens. And thank Randi.

This should put to bed the foolish notion that Hillary would close half the schools in the country, which was debunked long ago, but continues to be pushed by Hillary's foes.

Finally, it can only be a net positive to have a union leader of one of the largest and most progressive unions in the country to have the President's ear. Especially when she is using her voice to support teachers and help put an end to the testing mania, as she has done in influencing the Democratic platform.

Of course, Clinton's detractors may claim that this is only in the platform, and there's no guarantee that it will become policy. But that is true of every single item in the platform of both candidates. Platforms do, however, influence policy, and this platform represents an about-face from Obama's policies. It's an utter rejection of Duncan and King's reform ideas.

It's a new way forward. So kudos to Randi and the other education advocates who helped fashion this strong rebuke of ed reform.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Donald Trump Addresses the AFT

In response to Hillary Clinton's address to the NEA, Donald Trump decided that he would seize the opportunity to promote his ideas on education to the AFT and Randi Weingarten. Below is the text of his speech.

"I'd like to thank those of you who applauded me as I came in, all three of you. Some of your colleagues booed Crooked Hillary the other day, and all I can say is, good for you. Boo her. I am going to make education great again. I even thought of a slogan: "Make Education Great Again". I have the best slogans, believe me. I had baseball caps made for all of you with the slogan on it, but it was delayed when those folks in China refused to work 20 hours a day instead of the usual 18.

I wanted to tell you today that I will be great for education. I went to school myself, and that's how I got this great brain of mine. It's a top brain, let me tell you. My brain will come up with great ideas for education any day now. And no one knows education better than me. I mean, I started my own university, right? Look how well that went. People paid me lots of money just so they could say they had a Trump University degree. So, I stamp "TRUMP" on it, and make them promise not to say anything about how I scammed them or I'd sue. Genius, right?

So let's start with that. When I am president, we'll make the kids sign non-disclosure agreements in order to get "TRUMP APPROVED" stamped on their report cards. Who wouldn't want a Trump Report Card? No stamp, you get summer school. That'll teach the little bastards.

Now I've said I'm going to get rid of the Common Core, and I mean that. This is America! There's nothing common about us! So the Common Core is gone, believe me. We are gonna call it the Excellent Core. Same thing, but we brand it! Get it? So we can say our kids are excellent, not common! That's the kind of thinking I'm gonna give you.

Not only that, I am gonna add another R to the three R's. Three is better than four, right? So now we're gonna have reading, writing, 'rithmetic, and get this--Revolvers! Things like Sandy Hook--imagine how much better it would have been if thirty or forty teachers had opened fire in that school. Imagine bullets flying in both directions. It would have turned out much different, believe me. Every teacher is going to be packing heat in the classroom. Discipline problems--say goodbye to those. No kid will talk back to you when you have a Glock on your hip, am I right? Except maybe the Mexicans.

Speaking of them, let's get real for a minute folks, OK? We don't need the Mexicans or Muslims here with their sombreros and hibeejabbs. Pretty much anyone who comes here with funny hats we're gonna get rid of, OK? So what does that mean for you? Smaller class sizes! I hear you teacher types whining all the time about too many kids, no room to squeeze them in. So we deport them! These foreigners are either taking our jobs or shooting up our gays, and I have no problem with the gays--I love the gays as you know-well, not that way because I have Melania and who wouldn't want to hit that? Even my daughter, Ivanka, she'd turn a gay man straight. She had a rack to die for when she was thirteen. If she wasn't my daughter...but what am I telling you for? Many of you have had young students who developed early, and I mean, who wouldn't look? Unless you're gay, except the lesbians, but that's no reason they should be shot, which I am totally against.

And another good thing about deporting all these foreigners is--no more ELL classes! We're all gonna speak good American, like me! So you ELL teachers can go back to teaching something important. And foreign language? Forget it. We're going to make America great again, and we're going to start by speaking American, all the time.

I have a plan to give every teacher here an immediate raise of over a thousand dollars a year! You know how? It's smart--I only have smart ideas, the best ideas. I'm going to appoint Supreme Court justices who will make sure that you don't have to pay union dues! At all! That's a thousand clams you can count on keeping under a Trump presidency!

And speaking of unions, I want to thank Randi Weingarten for not stopping me from coming here to speak today. She blocked the door, but she's short and I stepped right over her. I have long legs and big hands as you know, not that Randi cares about that. Anyway, could someone revive Randi and bring her out here?

There she is! Look at my Jew over there! Look at her! Are you the greatest? Or is it Jewess--I don't know because I'm not politically correct. As you know, I love the Jews. As I've said before, the only people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes.  Whoa, why all the booing? How many Jews do we have here anyway? Raise your hand! Boy, that's a lot. I had no idea. But I think it's great that your people dedicate themselves to educating the youth of today.

In fact, that gives me an idea. You people have been oppressed for so long, I think you deserve special treatment. So when I am president--can someone pick Randi up again?--I am going to single you out for your great service. I am going to make you Sheriffs of your school. You'll be asked--in fact required--to call a registry every day so we can keep tabs on you. I mean on your school. And just so everyone knows your special status, I am going to issue you a special yellow Sherrifs badge! You're going to love it, believe me!

So don't forget--vote Trump in November! Made education great again! Or write in Bernie or Stein, it doesn't matter to me as long as we keep Crooked Hillary out! Thank you!"

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Ask Hillary to Meet with Diane Ravitch

If you haven't seen it, there a Change.org petition asking Hillary Clinton to meet with Diane Ravitch to discuss education policy. It's a great idea, and it only takes a minute.

Personally, I would love for Ms. Ravitch to become Secretary of Education in the Clinton administration. This is a great way to get the discussion started.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Who Said it Best: Berners or Trumpeters?

Pop Quiz: Who is more likely to say each phrase, a Berner or a Trumpeter?

1. Hillary's crooked! 2. Hillary's a criminal! 3. The primaries were rigged! 4. The FBI doesn't understand the law! 5. That was an ad hominem/ad populum/strawman! (while exhibiting little understanding of any of those phrases) 6. We live in an oligarchy! 7. It's because she's a woman! 8. If only people understood my candidate more, they'd vote for him! 9. Hillary only won because of low information voters (i.e., minorities)! 10. I'd rather see this country go down in flames than vote for her! 11. My candidate doesn't take money from PACs, so he is pure and can say what he really thinks! 12. Sure, my candidate has no specifics on how to implement his ideas, but at least he has ideas! 13. This is a political revolution! 14. I don't know a single person who supports Hillary. That proves she cheated! 15. The polls are obviously rigged, because they don't show my candidate winning!

  • If you answered that most of the quotes are from Bernie supporters, you are a Trump supporter.
  • If you answered that most of the quotes are from Trump supporters, you are a Bernie supporter.
  • If you have spittle running down your face because of your rage, you may be either.
  • If you are smiling quietly because all of these attempts from the right and the left have failed miserably and Hillary has a clear path to the presidency, you are a Hillary supporter.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

You Don't Like Hillary? Well, Voters Don't Like Bernie

I spend a lot of time reading and writing about the primary. Although I've written a few blog posts here, I devote much of my commenting to places like Reddit and Facebook, which are lousy with posts about Bernie. The vitriol I have received in return has been mind-blowing.

Most of the pro-Bernie camps talk about basically three issues: that Hillary is unlikable, untrustworthy, and essentially a Republican. Let me address this in one simple word: bullshit.

Let's tackle them one by one: likability. I get it Sanders supporters--you don't like her. You point to polls that show Bernie is much more likable, and point to that as a reason why he should be the nominee. What you fail to mention is that the Trump movement has coalesced around him, while Bernie supporters continue to trash her. You fail to mention that she consistently beats Trump in likability in those same polls. And most of all, you claim that she is unelectable due to these polls. Likability is what matters? Really? Are we in the 7th grade now? Apparently, she is liked well enough to have gained 3 million more votes than Sanders, and has two million more than Trump, who has been the presumptive nominee for quite some time now. People recognize that she is by far the most qualified and capable candidate in this field, and they vote for her. There are some legitimate reasons why you may not wish to do so, but not voting for her because you don't like her is, frankly, stupid. Lots of people voted for George W. Bush over the supremely qualified Al Gore, because they felt W was the kind of guy "you'd want to drink a beer with." How'd that work out, America? Five thousand American troops are dead and many more wounded. A hundred thousand Iraqis were killed. An economic crisis almost left this country in ruins. That's what voting for likability over experience will get you.

Then, there's the "issue" of being untrustworthy. To prove their case, Trump and Bernie voters alike (yes, politics makes strange bedfellows) have been accusing Hillary of everything from the "murder" of Vince Foster to Whitewater (which special prosecutor Ken Starr has essentially backtracked on) to the email "scandal". As to the latter, it's all nonsense. There's been zero evidence, other than a shady character named "Guccifer" who claims to have breached the server, that national security was compromised in any way. Guccifer is an admitted criminal who published the emails of the accounts he actually hacked, and US officials discount his story because he was unable to produce a single piece of proof that he hacked Clinton. Guccifer did hack many political figures, including former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who used an AOL account, for God's sake, but no one called for Powell to be imprisoned. As for the "scathing" IG report, it's clear that the State Department knew Hillary was using a private server, because she sent emails to them regularly.

Then there is the oft discussed claim that Clinton has rigged the election. This is where the tin foil hat brigade really takes off. Even Bernie himself has claimed election rigging, including in Puerto Rico, which hasn't even voted yet as of the time of this writing. What's interesting to me is that this so-called election rigging only happens in states which Bernie was losing anyway. You never hear a Bernie supporter claim that Michigan was rigged, for example, despite the fact that Hillary was leading the state by 21.4% going into the primary. But New York has to have been rigged, according to vocal Bernie supporters, because Hillary won a state she was expected to win by 11.7%.

And why does no one claim that Bernie is untrustworthy when he declared that superdelegates are there to subvert the will of the people, but now claims that he wants to flip the supers to his side? How is that not subverting the will of the voters? Remember, the supers have voted for the candidate with the most delegates every single time. Even Bill and Hillary in 2008 both voted for Obama at the convention, even though Hillary won the popular vote. Hillary actually made the motion to suspend the roll call vote and nominate Obama by acclimation.

And as for those claiming that the superdelegates gave Hillary an unfair advantage out of the gate, that is utter nonsense. Hillary had a huge lead in supers going into the 2008 nomination process as well over another relatively unknown candidate named Obama, but when it became clear that he was winning, they switched to him in droves, as they should have. The harsh, bitter truth is that Bernie has not run as successful a campaign as Obama in 2008. Had he done so, the supers would have switched to him as they did with Obama. But Bernie trails in every imaginable scenario. In fact, if there were no superdelegates, Hillary would already have won the nomination by taking more than half of the pledged delegates.

The last talking point is really rather laughable--that Hillary is a Republican in disguise. She voted the same as Sanders 93% of the time during her tenure in the Senate. If she's a Republican, then he must be as well, because they agreed on the vast majority of the issues. Based upon her voting record in the Senate, she was more liberal than 85% of her Democratic colleagues. She had a more liberal voting record than Obama, whom the Republicans portrayed as left of Castro.

There's no doubt that Bernie leads among some demographics, such a young white voters, and birds. But she is winning handily among women, blacks and Latinos (whom some rabid Bernie supporters label "low information voters". Yikes), and older voters. And Bernie may even lose the bird vote, as he is now being protested by animal rights activists for refusing to put together any sort of animal welfare agenda, as Hillary has.

I've even heard many Bernie supporters compare him to Jesus, because he's Jewish, worked as a carpenter, and is a socialist. Well, I own a pair of sandals, but oddly, I still can't walk on water.

I am not trying to change anyone's vote here, because that's an exercise in futility, at least among Bernie extremists. I have no doubt that most Bernie supporters will, after Tuesday's primaries, come around, especially when faced with the specter of Donald Drumpf.

And please spare me the polls that show Bernie beating the Donald. Hillary has trounced Bernie in the only polls that matter--actual votes.

June 7th can't come fast enough.