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Archive for September 2nd, 2009

Democrats are polling

I just got a robo-call asking me several questions about Obama’s health-care plans. At the end they asked if I approved of the job Obama was doing, and also if I approved of the job Beverly Perdue was doing.

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Obama’s school speech brings Sgt. Schultz response from everyone

I mentioned below that Durham Public Schools disavowed any connection with President Obama’s indoctrination speech to all public-school students on Sept. 8. I heard a woman caller just now on the Bill LuMaye show on WPTF-AM say that she called the federal Department of Education and go the same Sgt. Schultz response that I got from DPS.

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Traficant released from prison, and lookin’ good

Former Democratic congressman Jim Traficant was released from prison today after serving seven years for bribery and racketeering. Traficant was known as a flake for his wild floor speeches and also for his outrageous toupé.

I didn’t know what to expect when the story on his release described him thusly:

He wore a T-shirt, shorts and knee-high white socks and carried some of his belongings in a plastic bag.

That sounded pretty sad and forlorn, so I searched for a photo of him at the time of his release, and …. the man LOOKS GREAT! He looks tanned and fit, and one wonders, after looking at the photo, why he ever resorted to that dead possum toupé.

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DPS: Obama live-stream up to each school

The Durham Public Schools has no official position on President Obama’s unprecedented live-stream speech to all public-school children on Sept. 8. They’re leaving it up to individual schools, according to Communications Coordinator Michael Yarbrough. In response to this email I sent earlier today:

I wanted to find out what DPS’s position was on the Obama speech on Sept. 8 that is supposed to be piped live into all public school classrooms.

Will it indeed be piped into all DPS schools? What if parents don’t want their kids to see it? Have parents been told about it? Has this ever happened before with any other president? (I already know the answer to that one.) How is this justified on an educational/curriculum basis?

I received this response from Yarbrough:

DPS does not have a position … at this point it is a school-by-school decision.

I emailed back to ask if “at this point” meant that DPS’s position may change, and he said no.

Meanwhile, there’s an effort nationally to boycott the school speech:

Spread the word. Pass the link around. And see if the President’s face is still smiling, when he realizes he’s talking to half-empty classrooms. Do make it a teachable moment — one where the would-be teacher does the learning.

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Hate speech law provision unconstitutional, in Canada, anyway

In Canada, where the national human rights hate speech law has been used by petty martinets to punish those with whom they disagree, good news for all:

The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has ruled that Section 13, Canada’s much maligned human rights hate speech law, is an unconstitutional violation of the Charter right to free expression because of its penalty provisions.

Canada has been a poster-child for hate-speech laws gone haywire. As usual with most left-wing ideas, this one began with good intentions that brought more misery than the problems they were supposed to solve, especially when one zealot makes it his business to use it for personal vendettas:

It also marks the first major failure of Section 13(1) of the Canadian Human Rights Act, an anti-hate law that was conceived in the 1960s to target racist telephone hotlines, then expanded in 2001 to the include the entire Internet, and for the last decade used almost exclusively by one complainant, activist Ottawa lawyer Richard Warman.

Will Canada’s over-reach on hate speech and its subsequent problems suggest to us here below the 49th parallel that similar lessons may be learned in the health care area? Probably not in either, sad to say.

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Holy astroturfing on the way

Health Care for America Now, the Obama astroturfing organization pushing his health-care takeover, isn’t content to just send in its community organizers to shout down Obamacare opponents. Eschewing the left’s historic opposition to combining church and state, the Ohio branch of HCAN is trying to get preachers to tell their congregations that God and Jesus want the public option:

UHCAN Ohio is looking to engage in a short term contract with a person who has a background in working with faith communities in the Southwest Ohio area, primarily Cincinnati and its suburbs. The purpose of the contract is to engage faith community leaders to communicate with their congregations about the movement for national health care reform.

Coming soon to a church near you, no doubt.

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Durham on the Travel Channel tonight

Kevin at Bull City Rising reminds me via a post today that Durham will be featured on the Travel Channel’s “Man vs. Food” tonight. On tap for host Adam Richman is the “garbage burger” at Wimpy’s and the annual Doughman competition.

Be sure to watch and see if Durham becomes the first place that gets Richman to throw up. Kevin has a video promo of the show on his site.

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Astroturfing 9/11 into oblivion

Organizing for America, the remnants of the Obama campaign whose job is now to astroturf, well, everything, wants to turn 9/11, a day of remembrance, into a day of community organizing. Go here to read the now-obliterated marching order sent to Obamatons nationwide. It’s obliterated from the Organizing for America Web site because someone finally figured out that calling ones opponents “right-wing domestic terrorists” might be a little over the top.

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Van Jones: I can be an uppity a–hole, too

Van Jones, President Obama’s avowed-communist green jobs czar, tells one of his crunchy followers why Republicans were more effective when they had less than 60 votes in the Senate:

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An Incentive for Bad Teachers, A Disincentive for Good Ones

Wake County school board members have voted to use local funds to give pay raises of $200 to $350 to 1,600 teachers. The News & Observer story says the amount of the raise is determined by length of employment.

If Wake wants to prioritize spending this way, that’s fine with me. The problem I have is in giving raises based on how many times someone has walked through the doors. Clearly, this approach rewards both good and bad teachers – exactly what Wake County students don’t need and what we say we don’t want. One would think everyone could agree this is a disincentive to good teachers and an incentive to bad ones. After all, how many times have you heard a teacher complain that their colleague across the hall doesn’t do nearly as good a job with the students and is paid the same money? House Minority Leader Paul Stam sums up the problem this way:

“The basic, general problem is that we pay on longevity and credentials rather than productivity and energy,” Stam said. “We would do much better to have a merit system on differential pay rather than strictly on longevity and credentials.”

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