The Obama Version of Meritocracy
What Obama doesn't acknowledge, of course, is that the banking industry has looted America for the past two decades. He passes off this robbery as meritocracy.
Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize-winner in Economics and columnist for the New York Times, writes in his blog:
One comment on Krugman's blog seems especially pertinent to teachers: Washington works for the bankers, Obama's appeasing those in charge. America is ruled by predators and its citizens are the prey. Shockingly repugnant, but really hard to miss these days.
Likewise, Washington school policy works for the privatizers, and Obama/Ducan appease and promote those in charge. School policy is informed and ruled by predators: children and teachers are the prey.
Up to now, it has worked in Chicago, with hardly a whimper of protest, and now Duncan is charged with spreading the Chicago Plan across the nation. The only light in a very dark tunnel is that in the last few weeks, Chicagoans have come out in massive protest at each of the Chicago Public Schools Potemkin hearings on scheduled 2010 school closings under the Mayor Daley/ business consortium plan. Most people don't know about these protests because Substance News, the Chicago-based education newspaper of the resistance, is the only medium reporting on it.
Substance has attended all 14 hearings, documenting the community protests of school closings with news analysis and thousands of photographs. Today, education news in the Chicago Tribune includes the record number of Illinois students taking AP courses, a school lunchroom snafu, and the fact that snow closed the Baltimore County board of education offices. The Sun-Times reported on a plan to strip school councils of the power to pick principals, a school shooting in Tennessee, and the aftermath of one that happened in Chicago three weeks ago. They have not reported on the community protests. Not today. Not any day.
I live in Vermont. Why do I care about Chicago? For the same reason everybody else should: Your schools will be next. What the Chicago media--and your local media -- choose not to cover is shockingly repugnant.
For starters, take a very close look at what your state and your school district is promising to do with Duncan's Race to the Top bribe.
Paul Krugman says we're doomed. I agree. But we shouldn't go down without a whimper. And preserving are local schools is a place we can start.
After posting this here, I decided to put it up on Huffington.
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