Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Tuesday, March 18th, 2014.

Talk Is Cheap

Obama Administration

Bobby Jindal has an editorial in the New York Post titled “Bill De Blasio’s War for Poverty.” So the governor of one of the most poverty-ridden states in the Union, with 20 percent of residents living below the poverty line, thinks he is in a position to lecture anybody about poverty? That’s rich.

Jinda mostly criticizes De Blasio’s alleged war against charter schools, which are basically schemes to let a private educate industry gets its hands on tax dollars. However, De Blasio’s actual charter schools policy isn’t much of a war.

The previous week, Mr. de Blasio had approved 14 of 17 charter schools for co-location in traditional school buildings, which does not easily suggest that he is conducting a war on charter schools. And yet this has become the conventional wisdom. Five of the approved schools belong to the high-performing Success Academy network, run by Eva S. Moskowitz, who having led the protesters upstate chose to focus not on her win, but rather on the fact that three of her schools were rejected.

In two of those instances, elementary schools would have been set up on high school campuses, a practice the city has come to regard as problematic, and the third, a co-location at Public School 149 in Harlem, would have put the school at almost 135 percent of its capacity over the next few years and would also have displaced a vast number of children with special needs. Writing to the Department of Education, the principal of P.S. 149, Barry Daub, explained that keeping the space as it is would mean that his students would be able to maintain rooms for mandated occupational and physical therapy and speech services and that the school could continue with a theater arts initiative that was a key part of its program for children with severe disabilities.

You would have learned none of this from Ms. Moskowitz, who marketed her tale of victimhood by proclaiming that the mayor was disenfranchising “poor minority kids who want a shot at the American dream,” as if the autistic and behaviorally challenged children at P.S. 149 were coming from Sutton Place.

The facts of the matter don’t stop Bobby Jindal, in whose state charter schools have been founding teaching children that dinosaurs co-inhabited the earth with humans, from criticizing Mayor DeBlasio for being insensitive to the educational needs of the poor.

Like I said, talk is cheap.

Also, our old pal Mittens is crowing about how he wouldn’t have let Vlad the Mad take Crimea. Daniel Larison responds at The American Coservative with “Thak Goodness Romney Isn’t President.” After providing specifics on why Mitt ha no clue what he is talking about, Larison writes,

It has become fashionable in the last few months to give Romney credit for “prescience” on Russia in the 2012 campaign, as if he did anything more than echo ignorant hard-line talking points that didn’t show the slightest understanding of the relevant issues. He uttered a nonsensical claim about Russia as “our number one geopolitical foe,” which is still very wrong, and most of his defenders still don’t understand how laughable this was. All that Romney demonstrated as a candidate was a knee-jerk hostility to Obama’s policies and equally reflexive hostility to improving relations with Russia. To the extent that he had a coherent idea for how to approach Russia differently, he thought that Russia should be provoked at every turn and that cooperation should be avoided. This approach was rightly mocked during the campaign, and one can only imagine how much more poisonous relations with Russia would be now if it had been official policy for almost five years before the crisis in Ukraine. Had Romney been carrying out his preferred policy towards Russia over the last year, relations would be considerably worse, and we would be saddled with an administration that would go out of its way to clash with Russia on every issue. It was bad enough listening to Romney try to make foreign policy arguments as a presidential candidate, but it is simply ridiculous to be treated to the same nonsense now that the election campaign is long over.

Talk that is never tested is very, very cheap.

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