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Dem talking points: Preparing for the worst

A source forwards the election day talking points the DNC is circulating to outside allies, and they lay the groundwork for surrogates to explain major impending losses, arguing that national Dem strategists -- and local candidates -- did the best they could given history and the awful political environment.

Also note, in the third bullet point below, that the talking points offer no flat-out guarantee that Dems will hold the House, unlike the Dem message in recent weeks:

*Democrats knew that 2010 would be an uphill battle for three reasons: 1) the party of the President historically loses seats in midterm elections; 2) too many people are looking for work or struggling to get by as a result of 8 years of irresponsible economic policies (and despite creating more private sector jobs in the last 8 months than President Bush did in 8 years); and 3) the sheer number of seats we're defending this year as a result of the successes of 2006 and 2008, including 49 Democratic Representatives on the ballot this year whose districts John McCain won in 2008.

*But as a result of the hard work of the President, Democratic campaigns, the DNC, OFA, coordinated campaigns, campaign committees, and committed Democratic volunteers, our candidates are more competitive today than in previous comparative mid-term elections and in the best position possible for success.

*Despite these historic and economic headwinds, Democrats are now positioned to hold onto the Senate and have prevented Republicans from yet locking down the seats they need to secure the House.

Read the rest here.

All, let me know what you're seeing on the ground in your states and districts -- turnout, last minute flyers or ads, dirty tricks. It's all up to the voters now.

By Greg Sargent  | November 2, 2010; 8:24 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, House Dems, House GOPers, Senate Republicans, Supreme Court  
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Next: Doom and gloom among Democrats

Comments

"Election Attorneys File Racketeering Complaint Against Karl Rove and Tom Donohue's Elections Operations

...The complaint asks the Election Commission to find that there is probable cause to believe that secret money given to the Partnership is an in kind donation to candidates running for office. Arnebeck attests that he has "...a confidential source who personally witnessed Karl Rove and Tom Donohue coordinating their activities to determine the outcome of a state Supreme Court election." Such coordination is illegal under state and federal election laws..."
http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/election-attorneys-file-racketeering-complaint-against-karl-rove-and-tom-donohues-elections-operations-106303993.html (h/t Crooks and Liars)

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

I arrived at my polling place about half an hour after it opened this morning. Its a heavily Democratic area in Pennsylvania. There was only one other voter ahead of me when I arrived. That isn't too unusual though. The major exception was 2008 when the line stretched out the door into the parking lot. It was certainly nothing like that this year.

Posted by: QuiteAlarmed | November 2, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Morning, Greg:

I caught Rachel Maddow yesterday making the case that the Dems are going to get clobbered because they have been so bold legislatively. She said that the Dems were brave and enacted important legislation knowing they would suffer in the mid-terms. To me, that is just a positive spin on the GOP theme that the Dems are guilty of Liberal overreach. And it is equally nonsensical -- though far more disheartening -- to hear this drivel from someone on the Left. Since it seems that Maddow is one of the White House's favored bloggers, I imagine this is what the Dems have themselves internalized. If so, things are going to get very interesting starting tomorrow.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Didn't Karl Rove say the same thing on Election Day four years ago? "Republicans knew that 2006 would be an uphill battle for three reasons: 1) . . ."

Posted by: clawrence12 | November 2, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Um, Rachel Maddow isn't a blogger.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne

I've been waiting to see you here. I'm really enjoying your book. Fantastic dialogue and being from CA, it's always interesting to read about political shenanigans on the East Coast, LOL. I'm worried about Happy though, so you know how far into it I am.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 2, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

No guarantee, but the memo ends with this: "I am confident that we can hold onto the Senate, hold onto the House, and win important races all across the country."

Who is your source? Axelrod?

Posted by: clawrence12 | November 2, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

John Boehner has taken to mentioning Johnny Cash while on the campaign trail, but someone very close to the legendary singer is unhappy with the House GOP leader's tendency to do so. Rosanne Cash, daughter of Johnny Cash, took to Twitter to voice her displeasure:

@rosannecash: John Boehner: Stop using my dad's name as a punchline, you asshat.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/02/election-results-2010-live_n_777429.html

You tell 'em Rosanne. Johnny Cash was a real American and despised Agent Orange and everything he stands for. Asshat, indeed.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne

Also, I'd say progressives will be banished for the better part of the next two years. They may try to resurrect us early in 2012, by throwing us a couple of bones to get out the vote, but the next year and a half will be lean times for us. I just hope they don't screw up Social Security too badly.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 2, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Imsinca:

That's the kind of interesting development I'm talking about. And I don't think it will work because Liberals and Progressives are sick of being taken for granted by the Dems. May you live in interesting times, goes the Chinese proverb. And we do.

BTW: Congrats on the Giants. Looks like those SF Liberals can play some hardball!

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Sharron Angle's people could do a good ad with this one...

"And finally: As voters head to the polls today, one largely unnoticed election in Colorado could (though almost certainly will not) determine the fate of all humankind. Voters in Denver will consider a ballot measure to set up a commission to track space aliens, and allow residents to submit UFO sightings on the new Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission website. Sponsor Jeff Peckman says the government is tracking aliens, but refuses to make the reports public."
http://abclocal.go.com/wjrt/story?section=news/bizarre&id=7759809

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

I must have missed something. Has Greg given up the Morning Plum?

Posted by: mercerreader | November 2, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Oh, Imsinca, I missed your earlier comment on the book. I'm very "happy" you are enjoying it. Thanks a lot.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Later.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

"And I don't think it will work because Liberals and Progressives are sick of being taken for granted by the Dems."

You're right of course, I've never taken banishment well, and will keep fighting the rightward lurch that's surely coming. Hopefully, it's only temporary. The next couple of years will be interesting anyway.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 2, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

I voted this morning. Accidentally got in the line for city voters (I'm county), and even though that station should server fewer city voters than county, there were more city voters (although that could be a by-product of how poorly confirmation was being handled). Here, city trends to be heavily Democrat, while county trends Republican. So, if my polling station was any indication, city folks were out in droves this morning.

The central city issue is consolidation of city and county, so that may actually come to pass (I voted against it, because it's mainly a tax grab of the city to get its hands on what little county money it doesn't already abscond with).

May have just been that issue, but from my single anecdotal experience, I'd say Democrats were plenty motivated. It's unlikely to make a huge difference in Tennessee, except maybe pushing the governorship to the Democrat (McWherter), but may make the difference locally re: consolidation.

My judgement is the Democrats probably shouldn't be counted out entirely, just yet.

@wbgonne: "Johnny Cash was a real American and despised Agent Orange"

Johnny Cash is on the record regarding John Boehner? Or are you just extrapolating that from the lyrics of "Boy Named Sue"?

Rosanne Cash is one thing, but I don't think Johnny Cash took many partisan political positions, or that "despise" would be the right word to associate with what public political views he did share (which were few and far between).

And, frankly, if liberals can try and abscond with It's a Wonderful Life, the occasional right winger can try to make off with Johnny Cash. I get the impression Cash was much more of a bridge-builder than a "I despise you and everything you stand for" type.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Republicans do Uriah Heep.

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_11/026425.php

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

"No guarantee, but the memo ends with this: "I am confident that we can hold onto the Senate, hold onto the House, and win important races all across the country."

Who is your source? Axelrod?

Posted by: clawrence12"

His source for the Senate prediction was Sen. John Cornyn, R-Tex.

Posted by: Observer691 | November 2, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

@mercerreader - I think it is just that today and yesterday were rather out of the norm for anyone in and around the reporting game.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Likelihood that Dem's retain control of the senate sinks to 43% on Intrade:

http://gatewaypundit.firstthings.com/2010/11/wow-likelihood-that-dems-will-retain-control-of-senate-sinks-to-43-on-intrade/

The question is, tomorrow, will I giggle like a schoolgirl?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

All, check this out: More than a third of Democrats think Obama won't be reelected:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/11/doom_and_gloom_among_democrats.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | November 2, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Johnny Cash stood with the Working Man and for unions and against the rich and powerful. Agent Orange is the exact opposite. But hey, what does Johnny's daughter know about it?

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Alcohol is 3 1/2 times more harmful than marijuana.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11660210

Legalize it NOW! Yes on Prop 19!

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Perspective check:

No one seems to think that Republicans will end up with the kind of majority the Democrats have right now.

There are ZERO pundits predicting that Republicans will end tonight with an 87 seat majority in the house, or an 8 seat majority in the Senate. Which is what the Democrats have right now, at this very instant.

Clawing your way back to the minority--or to a bare majority--in the Senate, and having something like 40 seats fewer than the Democrats currently have right now in the House...well, it kind of sticks a pin in your argument that this is a "center-right nation," and that the American people prefer Republicans to Democrats.

If Republicans are so popular, how come in their wildest dreams they can't come close to the kinds of majorities that Democrats have at this very moment? Hello???

Posted by: theorajones1 | November 2, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

The GOP is already making excuses for their irresponsibility:

Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), the top GOP member of the influential House Financial Services Committee, said Republicans should be prepared to be "brave" in the face of a shutdown.

“I would think when we send the spending bills to the president he will veto them, and then the hard vote will be when he sends them back and we will be faced with another situation where he will probably try to force us to shut government down and we are going to have to be brave this time," Bachus explained on the Fox Business Network.

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/126873-top-republican-obama-might-force-gop-to-shut-down-government

Posted by: pragmaticstill | November 2, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I voted this morning about 8:30 in my NY district. It's rarely crowded when I go, but a fair amount of people were waiting. A little slow because of new voting machines (paper ballot, fill in the circles, feed it into the image cast).

I'm really pulling for John Hall (NY 19), contributed small amounts to him and a couple of other candidates, and if I didn't have work to do, I'd make myself some black-eyed peas and skillet cornbread--works well as either comfort or celebratory food :)

Posted by: carolanne528 | November 2, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

"if liberals can try and abscond with It's a Wonderful Life"

No chance we could get away with that! Even if the Potter character would be the one at Norquist's Wednesday meetings and would be the recipient of the Chamber of Commerce "Randian Self-Interest Champion of the Month Award" and even if George Bailey demonstrated so much empathy that he'd have no chance of geting past Republicans in a Supreme Court nomination fight.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

I'm in a rural purple district. Poll workers said that the pace so far today was on track to 2008, which set a record. But, the Governor's race in Michigan is going to be the big draw here.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 2, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

@pragmatic - Just saw that one. Cute, no? We're going to shut down the government and when we do it, it is actually Obama doing it. Then he'll say that we did it.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I still live in a world where my personal acquaintances include many Ds and many Rs and very few folks who hold extreme views. A poker discussion about undocs and IAs, for instance, will include all aspects of that issue and end in points of agreement about a few things, not in ethnically charged shouts about everything.

But politics is a form of marketing and requires, shall we say, exaggeration. The discourse of this campaign seemed to make no attempt to distinguish the relevant, entirely because the relevant is more suitable to a Charlie Rose type far ranging discussion than to a 30 second ad.

Most commenters here seem to try to address the relevant, although there is still an underlying current of distrust of fellow Americans here that does not appear at my poker games or Monday night mens' group or Friday morning breakfast group; all of which include Rs, Ds, and Is who have different opinions and different backgrounds.

I know it is easier to slip into sloganeering, and generalizations, even for thoughtful folks, in the abbreviated email format of the posted comment. But I wanted to note that I have not seen a blog where as many folks, not in echo chamber mode, are trying for a discussion as this one. Whether that is an accident of history [I am still just a lurker here] or a result of Greg's active leadership, I hope it continues.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 2, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Bernie:

"No chance we could get away with that!"

But you did try once. I had to slap you down.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 2, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

John Boehner is; The Orange Blossom Special.

Under Tim Kaine, the DNC has been comatose. He appears to have learned nothing from the early losses in Virginia, New Jersey and Mass.

We need some leadership that is willing to go into relentless attack mode, and stay with it, instead of allowing the opposition to define us, without our leaders ever defining them.

John Boehner, for cripes sake!. If Tim Kaine and the DNC were not able to make that guy the poster child for long term corrupt Washington insiders, they are not capable of running a winning campaign for a candidate in an uncontested race. Clean house, and bring in people who are willing to go on the attack, and keep on taking it to the opponents. The DNC rarely attempted to frame the debate and capture the news cycles.

Mitch McConnell and John Boehner.

If you can not use their long history of reckless spending, without budget offsets, and their history of being in bed with legions of lobbyists, you do not belong in politics.

The time has come for President Obama to also end his efforts to be a Political Gandhi. The opposition wants him to keep on being just that, because they are free to attack him, and define him in negative terms, without having to ever pay a price for it.

White House and DNC. Either go on the attack or become political roadkill in 2012. Almost no one likes a willing punching bag. Voters like someone who is willing to take the fight to bullies, so the time has come for Democrats to do just that.

Posted by: Liam-still | November 2, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Andrew Breitbart - gentleman, raconteur...

"In the late-night phone call with FishbowlDC, Breitbart went into a rant. He unleashed on the left, saying, "unsourced, cowardly, chicken sh*t Podesta-Bohlert bullsh*t." He went on: "These creepy Caucasians. Every one of these Caucasian freaks have Daddy issues. Underline freaks. Italicize eunuchs.""

And there's this...

"Of course it's JournoList - it's Greg Sargent," Breitbart said in a phone interview."
http://mediamatters.org/blog/201011010016

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

"But you did try once. I had to slap you down."

Yes. I recall your final winning slap. You described Potterville as an admirable consequence of free-market processes unencumbered by the moralistic paternalism common to liberal government regulatory oppression.

I had no defense.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

LOL!!!

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

I have, you'll all be happy to hear, just voted. My first wife, an American and very pretty, cast the ballot for me. Isn't that just the sweetest thing?

Posted by: bernielatham | November 2, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Gotta agree with Liam on the DNC "leadership". Oh, Dr Dean, a lonely world cries for you. . .

I arrived at my polling place right after the doors opened to a short line and they were bringing the last two machines online. Since I read my ballot, I noticed that two of the judges up for retention were listed twice and created a minor brouhaha by pointing it out to a couple of the polling place workers. . . but other than that nothing out of the ordinary. I haven't figured out why the voting machines that we use here aren't the standard: they're easy to read, the font on the machine can be enlarged to a ridiculous degree (I've experimented just to see what it looked like) and they print out a paper trail that has always matched the votes I cast. I haven't been able to come up with a flaw in them yet, and they're even Diebolds. Maybe because UT is so reliably red nobody thought they needed to "fix" ours. . . :-)

Posted by: Michigoose | November 2, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Decent poll lines in Boston. Hot governor's race probably explains it.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

I concur with Michigoose re: Liam's comments. Time to step up and slug away. Unfortunately, the renewed calls for bipartisanship -- as if -- seem to be contrary. Hopefully, Obama is just blowing smoke. By this time he MUST realize that the GOP and the Cons only want to destroy him and don't care if they take the country down too.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

I'm in a rural purple district. Poll workers said that the pace so far today was on track to 2008, which set a record. But, the Governor's race in Michigan is going to be the big draw here.

Posted by: suekzoo1
--------------------------------------
I thought with Snyder running away with the race that it wouldn't be much of a draw. I'm getting mixed reports on the east side about how busy polls are or aren't. I'm voting after work and in 2008 it wasn't particularly busy when I voted at that time so we'll see.

By the way K College Alum here.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | November 2, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I can't vote until my lunch break. However picking up coffee this morning at Starbucks I noticed plenty of "I voted stickers" on folks. Many were young which buoyed my spirits. Here in St. Pete we have to sweat out the fact the R's may foist a crook upon us as Governor...I mean literally a crook!

Ironically two dirty bearded guys with about half of their teeth did NOT have "I voted" stickers...maybe like me waiting for lunch...hopefully skipping the election entirely...they wore filthy tee shirts one of which said "Don't Blame Me, I voted for the American" Ahh Jake's people!

Anecdotally is the stickers are any indication we've had a good turnout today.
I'll know more after lunch.

Hard to know which way all the polls predicting an R landslide will effect turnout. Will Dems be demoralized and stay at home..or scared witless and show up...will R's want to jump on the bandwagon...or stay home thinking their vote is not needed. I think all this polling and predicting cuts both ways.

Posted by: rukidding7 | November 2, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

in response to this:
========================
If Republicans are so popular, how come in their wildest dreams they can't come close to the kinds of majorities that Democrats have at this very moment? Hello???

==============================

Your premise is flawed and it is therefore unlikely that you will arrive at a valid conclusion.

Republicans aren't "so popular" in fact several prominent Republicans were fired by the electorate in the 06 and 08 elections.

I'm a conservative and I have absolutely no trust in either McConnell or Boehner. Why? Because spending went up when they were in charge.

In my opinion this isn't a vote FOR the Republicans. It is a vote AGAINST the Democrats. Many of the Republicans I've heard lately have noted the fact that they were, in essence, fired. The smart ones know that this isn't about some magical Republican resurgence as much as it is about a disgust with DC politics as they now stand.

the Democrats benefited from a confluence of conservative disgust and Democrat energy. It worked well for them. the problem for the Democrats now is that it is far easier to criticize than it is to govern. America is not doing well and an angry electorate will make changes.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

"the Democrats benefited from a confluence of conservative disgust and Democrat energy. It worked well for them. the problem for the Democrats now is that it is far easier to criticize than it is to govern. America is not doing well and an angry electorate will make changes."

Skip....I am in basic agreement with your post but you've left out a couple of important facts in your last sentence.

1.) There are significantly MORE registered D's than R's almost everywhere in our country...even here in Florida. Therefore when both parties get equal turnout % the D's will always kick butt.

2.) The demographic trends are horrible for the R's...I'm not just talking AA's or Hispanics...young people by large margins favor the D's and the R's social conservatism does not help this at all.
In fact the R's face a daunting prospect in the decades ahead. Their only real advantage is the $$$ their Corporate masters can toss at campaigns.

Posted by: rukidding7 | November 2, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

That's why the next battlefield in America is education.

It is no accident that more youngsters are liberal/Democrat. It is not only a natural prediliction it is also a function of the education system.

to offset that we conservatives must make a strong effort to regain our voice in the schools, at all levels.

When the communists took over, among the first victims of their purges were teachers. Controlling what gets taught is a straightforward way of controlling how people ultimately view the world.

If we couple this with the fact that teachers have managed to create a nice rice bowl for themselves at taxpayer expense it is easy to predict a major political struggle in the schools.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

RUK:
That's why the next battlefield in America is education.

It is no accident that more youngsters are liberal/Democrat. It is not only a natural prediliction it is also a function of the education system.

to offset that we conservatives must make a strong effort to regain our voice in the schools, at all levels.

When the communists took over, among the first victims of their purges were teachers. Controlling what gets taught is a straightforward way of controlling how people ultimately view the world.

If we couple this with the fact that teachers have managed to create a nice rice bowl for themselves at taxpayer expense it is easy to predict a major political struggle in the schools.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

@rukidding7: "...young people by large margins favor the D's and the R's social conservatism does not help this at all."

I frequently see this point made, but I take little consolation in it. The fact that young people currently favor Democrats doesn't necessarily mean that they will continue to do so as they age. I can't provide any supporting data, but I suspect that younger generations have historically favored liberal parties without that translating into a partisan advantages across all generations over time.

There is also obviously an overall trend toward increasing acceptance of minority groups within our society. That's only natural: over time, the minority groups that scare us today become familiar and no longer frightening. Today's gay rights activists are yesteryear's Irish immigrants. I doubt, however, that this trend will translate into partisan advantages in the future any more than it has in the past.

Posted by: QuiteAlarmed | November 2, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

I'm coming up with a net loss of 38 seats for Democrats in the House in my pundit projection average right now. That's if each side wins 85% of the seats that are collectively leaned their way, 95% of the seats they're favored to win, and the toss-up's column splits straight down the middle.

So the House could definitely go either way in that estimate. Certainly Democrats have pretty much 0 margin for a collective error in their direction. If the meta-average ends up biased toward Dem's by even one seat, they lose. But as Republican-centric as the bulk of the buzz has been all year...

PS: Stuart Rothenberg is a must-read today.

http://rothenbergpoliticalreport.com/news/article/as-america-votes-its-all-over-but-the-shouting

Posted by: CalD | November 2, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

@skipsailing: "That's why the next battlefield in America is education."

Good luck with the conservative indoctrination plan. I suspect that younger generations will always favor liberal/progressive policies and that those generations will always become more conservative as they age.

Posted by: QuiteAlarmed | November 2, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

RUK - just a local point of information: in TX, Texicans vote EXACTLY like Anglos, if you correct for incomes. In other words, Texican physicians vote like Anglo physicians and Texican unskilled labor votes like Anglo unskilled labor [which is to say, not much, at all, but leaning D]. As our hispanic population grows wealthier, which it has over time, it becomes less reliably D in TX.

It also cannot be characterized any more. There is a sizable hispanic middle class in several cities and the poorest population in America - third world level - along the Rio Grande. That is not one community, nor is it one voter demographic.

I can only guess that CA, AZ, and NM are similar.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 2, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

@Jake "If we couple this with the fact that teachers have managed to create a nice rice bowl for themselves at taxpayer expense it is easy to predict a major political struggle in the schools."

Sorry guy but you've completely lost me now.
You jumped the shark into the conspiratorial waters of absurdity. Teachers are a reflection of our society...they mirror us not lead us. Most of the "education" you refer to as in partisan leanings is done in the home not the schools. Bringing up communists makes you sound like an ideological reactionary...that is such an extreme!!!!!

As far as teachers creating a "nice rice bowl at taxpayer expense"...this makes you sound like one of the reasons we are getting our butts kicked globally in education. Teachers used to be revered. They were not viewed as freeloaders who got their "rice bowls at taxpayers expense"
You extremists simply can admit that there are many LEGITIMATE reasons for taxes! Teachers here in Florida are lucky to make 40K annually. And for that they take abuse from undisciplined students...work their arses off...often spending their OWN money to supplement what school systems do not provide and then get ridiculed by the moronic and in my state demonstrably (as in indicted) crooked republican politicians and folks like you who have no appreciation for public education and what it has meant historically for our nation and the implications for the future.

In Finland for example and other nations that lead in education they are not worried about a "nice rice bowl" for the teachers...they pay them like any top professional and recruit the elite performing college students. Teachers are respected and compensated and not derided as "managed to create a nice rice bowl for themselves at taxpayer expense"

In short Skip it sounds like you're simply parroting Jake's paranoia here.

Posted by: rukidding7 | November 2, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

RUK - just a local point of information: in TX, Texicans vote EXACTLY like Anglos, if you correct for incomes. In other words, Texican physicians vote like Anglo physicians and Texican unskilled labor votes like Anglo unskilled labor [which is to say, not much, at all, but leaning D]. As our hispanic population grows wealthier, which it has over time, it becomes less reliably D in TX.

It also cannot be characterized any more. There is a sizable hispanic middle class in several cities and the poorest population in America - third world level - along the Rio Grande. That is not one community, nor is it one voter demographic.

I can only guess that CA, AZ, and NM are similar.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 2, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

That's why the next battlefield in America is education. It is no accident that more youngsters are liberal/Democrat. It is not only a natural prediliction it is also a function of the education system. to offset that we conservatives must make a strong effort to regain our voice in the schools, at all levels. When the communists took over, among the first victims of their purges were teachers. Controlling what gets taught is a straightforward way of controlling how people ultimately view the world. If we couple this with the fact that teachers have managed to create a nice rice bowl for themselves at taxpayer expense it is easy to predict a major political struggle in the schools.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Is this parody?

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

well wbgone has nothing to add. Who among is shocked by that? Oh look, nobody is.

Next, I disagree with those who say that conservative voices in education will contribute to a different POV for the students.

Many on the right have reached the conclusion that the school system is a bastion of liberality. Just ask William Ayers, that's where he wound up after an illustrious career killing people and damaging property. Oh want another example? Ward Churchill.

As to teacher's pay, I'm more than willing to take on that argument. As Chris Christie points out frequently the teachers have the best deal going.

yesterday the local news reported that a scuffle broke out when two demonstrators posing as "cash cows" were confronted by a teacher. The cash cows were demonstrating against a school levy. the teacher was demonstrating in support of it.

since the teacher's name was mentioned in the article it was easy to obtain his salary information. Gosh, I wish I was being paid $49/hour. I wish I paid virtually nothing for my health insurance. Gosh, I wish I had a defined benefit pension plan instead of defined contribution. Gosh I wish I could retire in my early fifties and live the rest of my life on the tax payers.

If the product were better perhaps the arguments about salary would be less vitriolic. But the fact is America's schools are failing America's children. The "system" exists for the benefit of the adults sucking on it and not for the students themselves. I say this as a parent who shepherded two bright young children through the byzantine mess that is public education in America today.

As to the whining about the plight of teachers in Florida, let me quote Govenor Christie: Well, you don't have to do it. If it is so bad, let them relocate here where the pickings are might fine.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Greg, the title of this article leads me to believe that you didn't even bother to rephrase the DNC/White House talking points in your words this time. Feeling a little glum? Good thing you already have a support group ready in your fellow ex-Journolisters.

Posted by: bonjournolist | November 2, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Hey Skippy:

That is some fine parody. You should write for The Onion.

Here's a flash: You Cons have been in control of everything for the last 40 years. If that wasn't enough time to destroy the country that's tough.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't aware that Obama and Pelosi were conservatives.

Posted by: clawrence12 | November 2, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

skip just cannot help doing the chicken little dance, comparing communist purges to our current educational system.

Keep it up-we need more humor around here.

I'm sure he's quite unaware of the irony in his paranoia.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 2, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Clearly neither chuck in denton or wbgone can mount a cogent response to my pov. I'm hardly surprised.

Whenever liberals are at a loss for words they generally resort to some form of sneering cynicism. that's on display quite clearly thanks to the aforementioned folks.

Keep up the good work guys. Show everyone how ill prepared you are to engage in debate. Nothing will do more harm to your movement then your own behavior.

thanks again.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | November 2, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Skip posted:

"f the product were better perhaps the arguments about salary would be less vitriolic. But the fact is America's schools are failing America's children. The "system" exists for the benefit of the adults sucking on it and not for the students themselves. I say this as a parent who shepherded two bright young children through the byzantine mess that is public education in America today."

Your experience was different than mine. I shepherded four through public schools. Two were outstanding students - a national merit scholar and a magnet math and science high school graduate who was national merit commended. Three are now college grads. One is in professional school. The one who had a tough time in school matured a bit late and is now a success in business. All four had better public educations than I did, 1948-1960.

Neither your experience nor mine is broad enough, profound enough, to allow us to judge American public ed as a whole. I suggest.

I am a believer that in the USA public education is a function of the states and not of the federal government. A state may choose to raise the quality of its public education or ignore it, or even deny it. There is no federal constitutional right to a public education but many state constitutions guarantee it.

So I would pose these as some internal American questions about ed:

do states with superior public education systems show economic growth that states with inferior systems do not?

Do states with inferior public education systems ever learn from states with superior ones?

Where a state does not mandate public ed, how do the localities in that state respond?

Do states that strive ever study similar systems in other nations?

I do recall a study by one of the local Fed Reserve banks [Cincy, I think] c.1990. It suggested that grade level size [not classroom size!] was the most important single variable in quality of elementary ed, based on an enormous multiple regression analysis. If I could find it on the web I would post it. Teacher skill was #2. It also suggested that the same 182 school year would work better with a five week summer vacation than a twelve week one.

So I do know there is at least one study out there that has focused on improvement other than by simply throwing money.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | November 2, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

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