“And so, sixty years after Brown, it is clear that the notion of segregation as a discrete phenomenon, an evil that could be flipped, like a switch, from on to off, by judicial edict, was deeply naïve. The intervening decades have shown, in large measure, the limits of what political efforts directed at desegregation alone could achieve, and the crumbling of both elements of “separate but equal” has left us at an ambivalent juncture. To the extent that desegregation becomes, once again, a pressing concern—and even that may be too grand a hope—it will have to involve the tax code, the minimum wage, and other efforts to redress income inequality. For the tragedy of this moment is not that black students still go to overwhelmingly black schools, long after segregation was banished by law, but that they do so for so many of the same reasons as in the days before Brown.”—The Failure of Desegregation : The New Yorker
“During Mr. Miller’s long membership in the white power movement, its leaders have robbed armored cars, engaged in counterfeiting and the large-scale theft of military weapons, and carried out or planned killings. The bombing by Timothy J. McVeigh, an Army veteran, of the federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995, which killed 168 people, was only the most dramatic of these crimes. When we interpret shootings like the one on Sunday as acts of mad, lone-wolf gunmen, we fail to see white power as an organized — and deadly — social movement.”—Veterans and White Supremacy - NYTimes.com
“In 2009, the Department of Homeland Security issued a nine-page report detailing the threat of domestic terrorism by the white power movement…. The report singled out one factor that has fueled every surge in Ku Klux Klan membership in American history, from the 1860s to the present: war. The return of veterans from combat appears to correlate more closely with Klan membership than any other historical factor. “Military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists carrying out violent attacks,” the report warned. The agency was “concerned that right-wing extremists will attempt to recruit and radicalize returning veterans in order to boost their violent capabilities.””—Veterans and White Supremacy - NYTimes.com
As the fight over charter schools continues across the country, the Big Easy is taking a unique approach — New Orleans will begin the next school year with America’s first all-charter school district.
In September, Louisiana’s Recovery School District (RSD) will close the last of its public schools that have not been turned into charters, leaving it a 100 percent charter school district.
There are charter schools — which receive public funding but are privately operated — in every major city, but no city has a higher percentage than New Orleans. Eighty-four of the city’s 89 schools operated by the RSD are already chartered, and 40,196 of New Orleans’ 44,614 students are enrolled in a charter school.
“But here’s what’s really appalling about this — Republican politicians insulting our intelligence by pretending to care about whether the non-wealthy have health insurance. The Republican Party, from the Supreme Court to many statehouses, is engaged in a so-far successful struggle to deny Medicaid to millions of people. The de jure offers made by Republicans to the uninsured are various shades of horrible, and the de facto Republican offer to the uninsured is “nothing.” These are, in short, desperate and dishonest arguments being made by people strongly committed to restoring an awful status quo ante.”—Unskew the ACA! - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money
One official said that almost all of the critical threat-related information from Abu Zubaida was obtained during the period when he was questioned by Soufan at a hospital in Pakistan, well before he was interrogated by the CIA and waterboarded 83 times.
Information obtained by Soufan, however, was passed up through the ranks of the U.S. intelligence community, the Justice Department and Congress as though it were part of what CIA interrogators had obtained, according to the committee report.
“The CIA conflated what was gotten when, which led them to misrepresent the effectiveness of the program,” said a second U.S. official who has reviewed the report. The official described the persistence of such misstatements as among “the most damaging” of the committee’s conclusions.
“Democratic voters will see some new names on their Democratic primary ballots this year. Some may be Tea Partiers in disguise, rather than party-switchers who’ve had an epiphany. So voters who want to avoid being April fooled in June and November - or whenever there is a party primary - need to research the backgrounds of unfamiliar candidates and their current stances on the issues — to make sure that the candidates actually embody Democratic values.”—Don’t Be April Fooled by Far-Right Activists Dressed Up as Democratic Candidates | Jonathan Hutson
“"The bottom line is this: If we had some kind of smoking-gun intelligence from waterboarding in 2003, we would have taken out Osama bin Laden in 2003," Tommy Vietor, spokesman for the National Security Council, told The New York Times.”—Torture May Have Slowed Hunt For Bin Laden, Not Hastened It
As Jackson couldn’t fluently play any instruments, he would sing and beatbox out how he wanted his songs to sound by himself on tape, layering the vocals, harmonies and rhythm before having instrumentalists come in to complete the songs.
One of his engineers Robmix on how Jackson worked: “One morning MJ came in with a new song he had written overnight. We called in a guitar player, and Michael sang every note of every chord to him. “here’s the first chord first note, second note, third note. Here’s the second chord first note, second note, third note”, etc., etc. We then witnessed him giving the most heartfelt and profound vocal performance, live in the control room through an SM57. He would sing us an entire string arrangement, every part. Steve Porcaro once told me he witnessed MJ doing that with the string section in the room. Had it all in his head, harmony and everything. Not just little eight bar loop ideas. he would actually sing the entire arrangement into a micro-cassette recorder complete with stops and fills.”
Reasons why I laugh when people say he wasn’t a real musician.
“In New York City, the largest school system in the U.S. with 1.1 million pupils, the study notes that many of the charter schools created over the last dozen years are among the least diverse of all, with less than 1 percent white enrollment at 73 percent of charter schools.”—Report: NY Schools Are Most Racially Segregated - NYTimes.com