HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » yurbud » Journal
Page: 1


Profile Information

Member since: Sun Jul 11, 2004, 07:58 PM
Number of posts: 39,405

Journal Archives

RAVITCH: Florida Charter Schools Reap huge profits from Real Estate Scam

Even when charter schools are set up as non-profits or with a modest profit margin, the companies running them rake in the big bucks by having other divisions of their companies buy the land for the schools then RENT it to the district.

Something similar is going on with school closures: the land is coveted by developers, who might buy it for a song from corrupt public officials then rent it back to the district for a charter school or simply use it for other purposes.

And which do you think is cheaper, running a school on land that was bought decades ago and probably owned free and clear, or paying RENT on something you used to own free and clear?

Should our tax dollars being going to these Wall Street grifters to run Enron-like scams with our kids education?

Should politicians who set up deals like this be allowed anywhere near public office?

When will Democratic Party voters get rid of Democratic politicians who are bribed to set up these scams and replace them with true progressives?

If Democrats don't clean house soon, they will so soil their brand with this sociopathic corporate behavior that even if they do so later, the public still wouldn't be able to trust them.

And saying that the Republicans would do the same or worse is no defense.

That's like a wife beater telling his wife she should be grateful he only uses his fist since the guy she didn't marry would beat her with a belt.

Eventually, she will find a way to live without any beating at all.

Charter schools are tuition-free public schools that are authorized by – but not operated by – each school district. For each student who "chooses" a charter, his or her school gets state dollars that would have otherwise gone to the school district.

"Charter Schools USA (CUSA) has been operating charter schools in Florida for 20 years, including recently-opened schools in Hillsborough County: Woodmont Charter, Winthrop Charter, and Henderson Hammock Charter. Although charter schools sometimes struggle financially at first, CUSA eventually collects a 5% management fee from each to provide administration and guidance.

"But 10 Investigates found a much bigger pot of money CUSA has been able to tap into: rent. When the company helps open a new school, its development arm, Red Apple Development, acquires land and constructs a school. Then, CUSA charges the school high rent.

"For example, Winthrop Charter in Riverview may struggle to balance its budget this year thanks to a $2 million rent payment to CUSA/Red Apple Development. The payment will equate to approximately 23% of its budget, even though CUSA CEO Jon Hage has been quoted as saying charter school rent should not exceed 20%.


New York Times refuses to endorse Wall Street tool Cuomo for governor

Maybe the New York Times is realizing they won't have many readers left if they keep carrying water for Wall Street and the corrupt politicians they own.

Besides the ethics issue mentioned here, Cuomo has carried water for the corporate education reformers who are devastating K-12 education, so they can take over and charge taxpayers a profit for doing so.

Maybe the Democratic Party, should realize their "lesser of two evils" scam is reaching it's expiration date, and clean house of the corporate trash, before people decide the party can't be saved.

Members of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s team are “ stunned” by latest endorsements of his opponent, Fordham University Associate Law Professor and Top Wonk Zephyr Teachout. The New York Times declined to make an endorsement in the race, attributing the unusual decision to the Governor’s “failure on ethics reform” … meanwhile, Teachout has garnered endorsements from the National Organization for Women’s New York chapter, Sierra Club,the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, the New York State Public Employees Federation, and The Nation, who called her “ a savvy, trust-busting progressive.”

The Working Families Party (WFP) had initially tapped Teachout to run against Cuomo in response to the Governor’s interference with an ethics commission and overall lack of adherence to progressive principles. Cuomo might have thought he was in the clear when he eventually secured the WFP endorsement in a backdoor deal in early June; however, a WFP member recently told the Daily Beast: “ There is definitely a sense right now of buyer’s remorse” … perhaps that is why Cuomo is refusing to debate his up and coming progressive opponent?

Is the TEACHOUT challenge a teachable moment for ethically-agnostic politicians? Should Mug Shot Perry and Gov. Bridgegate read the tea leaves and pack in their presidential ambitions? Or is this just a bump in the road for Cuomo? Time will tell…


Putin Has Now Cornered Ukraine And Its President

I don't know the politics of the author of this piece, but the points he makes about the West's support for Ukraine and that government falling apart ring true based on recent history.

If a country doesn't do business the way "our" bankers and oil companies like, we overthrow their government either by backing rebellions and revolutions, or directly intervening militarily ourselves. Then we establish or support a government that we think will do the bidding of "our" banking and oil companies.

The problem is, the previous governments often didn't do the things they were "supposed to" because they knew they would be run out of office or killed by their own people if they did.

A case in point is Iraq. Our oil companies wanted them to de-nationalize their oil reserves so the oil companies could reap the vast majority of the profits from it. Our government supported or rejected Prime ministers based on their support of this. Maliki supported it, but couldn't get his parliament to enact it because they know the US won't helicopter all of them out to escape the angry mob if they did. And so, Maliki must go for not doing the impossible.

Likewise, in the Ukraine, given the major ass-screwing bankers are giving Europe with austerity right now, to the extent that the new Ukrainian government follows their orders, they will become unpopular and eventually chased out of office.

You can trick people into trading a sack of gold for a sack of shit, but you can't expect them to stay happy once they open the package.

Ukraine's government is in a perilous position after advances by Russian troops into southeastern regions in the country, and it's likely the country will have to accept a cease-fire that hands over large swaths of territory to pro-Russian separatists.

Geopolitical expert Ian Bremmer, the president of Eurasia Group, told Business Insider in an email that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is now backed into a corner. And Bremmer said Poroshenko would most likely seek a quick cease-fire solution to prevent his country's economy from completely collapsing.

"The Ukrainian government has been in an impossible position, they gambled, and they've lost," Bremmer said. "Poroshenko now needs a cease-fire so that he can try to restart negotiations, the terms of which will effectively mean freezing the conflict and ceding significant pieces of Ukrainian territory to the separatists. That's politically perilous for him and risks counterdemonstrations against his government in Kiev. All the while his economy will be falling apart, with very limited support from the West.

"But there's no other way out."

Ukraine and Russia are now at war, Bremmer said, after the Ukrainian government's gamble did not pay off. Russia continued to escalate the situation in response to a strong offensive from Ukraine's military in the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, where fighting between the government and the separatists has raged for months. But Russia has important oil, gas, and military ties to Ukraine, as Bremmer pointed out:

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/ukraine-russia-at-war-invasion-2014-8#ixzz3Bo8ZmeMJ

Wow. Do they have ANY prospects with a credible chance of winning general

Or are they justtrying to create jobs for comedy writers?



Goldman Sachs executive Oliver Dauphin was shot and killed today when he failed to respond to questioning by a police officer.

Dauphin was waiting for his limo at the curb outside the Bhutan Grill when police officer Damon Johnson overheard him on the phone, selling what sounded like a rent based derivative.

"I knew how much damage those mortgage back derivatives did to our economy and the world, so I wanted to ask some questions to find out if they were solid or another pump and dump fraud like the mortgage backed derivatives," said Johnson.

Johnson instructed Dauphin to hang up, so he could ask his questions, but Dauphin ignored him and walked a few feet away.

Johnson followed and took his phone out of his hand, ending his call.

Dauphin tried to grab his phone back, and Johnson said, "not until you answer some questions."

Dauphin became enraged and said, "Do you know who I am? Do you know who I am? I'm the guy who's going to get you fired. I'm going to make your life a living hell. You're dead!"

Johnson took his last statement as a threat, drew his revolver, and told Dauphin to put his hands on his head.

Rather than comply, Dauphin made a dismissive noise and reached inside his jacket.

Fearing that he may have been reaching for a weapon, Johnson opened fire, hitting Dauphin three times in the chest and once in the head.

A later search of his body found no weapon, only a wallet and a cigar.

Others in the finance industry were shocked by the shooting and demanded that the officer be fired or at least put on suspension pending an investigation.

The police chief said he had no plans to do so since the officer acted within department policy.

"A suspect wearing a long heavy coat like that could be hiding a shotgun, assault rifle or grenade launcher for all we know, so given his movements, the shooting was appropriate. Police officers deal with very dangerous people in this neighborhood who have been known to rob pension funds, bankrupt local and state governments, and even countries with their fraud. Given that threat, Officer Johnson acted appropriately."

He also said that a cigar had been stolen from a nearby bodega and it was very likely the officer could smell the tobacco. Johnson did not mention this in any of his own statements though.

What Is Driving the Charter School Movement in Newark?

The title of this article has a one-word answer: money. In this shocking article, journalist Owen Davis explains how the expansion of charters in Newark is driven by two factors:

1) the availability of millions of dollars in federal school construction bonds that have been showered on the charter schools but not the public schools;

2) the Chris Christie administration's decision to withhold funding specifically designated for the repair and renovation of existing public schools.

Put these two factors together and you get a city with gleaming charter schools and crumbling public schools.


Chicago Tribune Poll: Voters Reject Rahm’s Education Policies, Favor Teacher's Union

Note to Democrats: it's tough to appear small-D democratic when you ignore your constituents who notice that you are robbing them to give to the rich.

Nearly 80% of those with kids in public schools disapproved of his handling of education

What is especially significant is that corporate education reformers often say their goal is to help underprivileged, inner city kids get a better education.

In effect, if you don't agree with them, you are a heartless racist.

Oddly, black Chicagoans aren't feel the love from the corporate reformers since they disapprove of Rahm's approach even more than whites.

Democrats need to realize that to keep up the appearance of democracy, they need to put the people ahead of their Wall Street masters on at least a FEW issues, and this is one of them.

If you don't give us a progressive alternative to party that OPENLY favors the rich, we will have to make another one that does.

The Chicago Tribune's poll of voters' views of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's school policies showed very low approval for the Mayor. The mayoral election is in February 2015, and it appears that education is Rahm's weak spot. He favors charter schools and shut down nearly 50 public schools in one fell swoop, an act unprecedented in American history. He has fought bitterly with the Chicago Teachers Union over school funding. It is not working well for him politically, the poll shows.

"Asked about Emanuel's handling of public schools, 65 percent disapproved, 26 percent approved and 10 percent had no opinion. The latest findings show a shift of 5 percentage points toward disapproval from a Tribune poll in May 2013 — just before a vote by the school board to shut nearly 50 public schools.

"While dissatisfaction with the mayor on education crossed racial lines, it was more intense among African-American voters. Critics contend black neighborhoods were disproportionately targeted for school closings. Fully 77 percent of black voters disapproved of Emanuel's handling of the city's schools while only 14 percent approved."

"Among parents of children in Chicago Public Schools — about one-fifth of those taking part in the survey — nearly 4 out of 5 disapproved of the mayor's handling of public education while only 19 percent approved. But even those without children in the public schools disapproved at a 62 percent rate, while only 27 percent approved.

"Emanuel's approach on charters versus neighborhood schools was roundly criticized by voters: 72 percent disagreed with that approach, compared with 18 percent who agreed. African-American voters most severely opposed the policy — at 83 percent — while only 10 percent agreed with Emanuel. Nearly 8 in 10 parents of CPS children also were opposed, as well as 75 percent of female voters, 69 percent of men and 63 percent of whites."


Ferguson shows why elite should be worried about a revolution

For decades, even centuries, cops, sheriffs, and pretty much any old good old boy who felt like it could do whatever the fuck they wanted to black people and most white people wouldn't care.

After the shooting of Michael Brown, enough white people seemed to be of the same opinion as black people that Congress suddenly got bipartisan religion on demilitarizing the police.

Black and white is about as big a political divide as you can get in America, and at least on this issue, we came together.

Is it so hard to imagine middle class people making common cause with the working class and poor of their own and other races if we were able to at least temporarily bridge this race divide?

What if instead of a cop's bullet, next time it's cuts to food aid to poor family's, another job-killing trade deal, or bail out of Wall Street that saves the criminals instead of their victims, and instead of seeing those getting the raw deal as "them" and losers, we see "them" as part of "us"?

All of those things have happened before and are very likely to happen again.

But the next time they do, the elite could get the Ferguson response.

KIDS BOOK COVER: My Parents Open Carry

I found this over at Reddit.

This would comforting if we lived in a post-Apocalyptic zombie-filled world.

But we don't.

Go to Page: 1