Recent comments

  • Reply to: Koch-Fueled Playbook against WV Working Families Exposed by CMD   2 days 10 hours ago
    As if things in WV weren't bad enough! It's where Massey Energy's flagrant safety violations at Upper Big Branch Mine killed 29 and injured in 2010--the worst coal mining disaster in 40 years; and where a "bomb train" carrying crude oil from N Dakota to Virginia derailed near Mount Carbon in Feb. 2015, causing fireballs and conflagrations on 19 rail cars, each w/some 30,000 gallons of crude, destroying one home, forcing the evacuation of hundreds of others, and causing a shutdown of two water treatment plants; and where in 1970 a Pittston Coal Company slurry impoundment dam in Logan County burst (days after it was declared 'satisfactory' by a federal mine inspector); and where the largest construction site disaster in U.S. history happened at Willow Island Power Station, where 51 workers were killed in 1978 because of faulty concrete, and where fracking is now tearing the state apart, w/more than 16,000 acres of damaged land since 2005 and 200+ lawsuits against frackers in '13 & '14.
  • Reply to: Charter School Black Hole: CMD Special Investigation Reveals Huge Info Gap on Charter Spending   1 week 10 hours ago
    Margaret Burns - if you actually believe that the reason students are becoming ill, crying and disliking school is tied to private or charter schools, you indeed have drank vast quantities of the Kool-Aid. While I believe these schools who have received funding and failed to open should be investigated, I believe there is a deeper underlying agenda present. I don't think this is the place to get into that conversation - but Mrs. Burns, let me make one thing very clear to you. If public schools were actually teaching the students information, no wait, accurate and truthful, and useful information, then there would be a higher attendance at your public schools. The public school system has failed. Failed America and most disheartening, failed the youth, the student. They have failed because of the influence that politics has had in the content that public schools are instructed to teach. Today, public school students are taught to take a test. A very specific test. In fact in the Atlanta airport, during a flight delay, I struck up a conversation with an older lady. I found out where she was from - near my town and asked what she did. She told me she was a teacher - for 35 years, in the Killeen ISD. I then asked, "What do you teach?" Her response floored me, but rung with such truth and honesty, I could only shake my head. She looked at me and replied, "Nothing." I paused for a moment to allow the magnitude of that revelatory comment to sink in. She just told me, "I teach nothing to our kids." Not because she's lazy and plays crossword puzzles or mahjong, it's because the polity of public school system has become so bogged down with garbage and a pure focus on taking some ridiculous test for money that she spoke volumes of truth. Even the material has changed over the years. Not toward the truth, but toward POLITICAL CORRECTNESS. Of course that falls smack dab in the middle of said agenda of prwatch and every single entity attached. Liberalism to the nth degree. I can feel myself about to go on a tangent of the hypocrisy of claiming to provide UNBIASED reporting and investigative analysis. Only unbiased if you are a devout liberal! So yes, private schools and charter schools are necessary. They are necessary so that the United States of American can continue to be competitive in the market place. They are necessary to prevent America from becoming a state of ignorant sheep. Our country needs a desperate change and I don't mean the kind that your guy POTUS has brought upon us, but real change - good change. Our public schools need the same. They need a revival. A revival of truth, character and integrity. A revival of the purpose in which teachers felt "called" to this profession. To actually teach - to make a positive influence upon a generation that is coming after them, but to whom the state of our country rests squarely upon their shoulders.
  • Reply to: State Farm Insurance Claims "No Fault" in Bankrolling ALEC   1 week 2 days ago
    All ALEC members work only on mattrers of specific interest to them, but they all fund, elect, and work with the same legislators for adoption of the entire ALEC agenda, and ALEC's sister organization, the Heritage Foundation, uses the entire ALEC agenda to "score" candidates, the GOP's most influential scoring sheet. Come for the insurance deregulation, stay for the homophobia and climate change denial.
  • Reply to: How Charles Koch Backed the John Birch Society at the Height of Its Attacks on Martin Luther King   1 week 2 days ago
    After I sent you my message, I thought of additional information I should have presented. [Truncated for space] I just think it is important to understand that our current political climate is responsible for hyperbolic attacks which seek to link the Koch family to the JBS as if the principles, values, and beliefs of Fred and Charles Koch are indistinguishable from the principles, values and beliefs of the JBS as an organization. My point is that we do not currently know with any degree of confidence the degree to which Fred and Charles Koch accepted some of Welch's most lunatic-fringe ideas. We do know, however, that many JBS members supported politicians, public figures, or political objectives which Welch did NOT agree with. In some cases, the disagreements are rather stark -- such as when some Birchers were supporting Governor Orval Faubus for President and Welch was writing that Faubus was a Communist! To bring this into contemporary times --- significantly, the current CEO of the JBS has written highly critical articles regarding individuals who are highly respected and admired by the Tea Party Movement -- including, for example, Sarah Palin and Cong. Paul Ryan. And the annual "Freedom Index" compiled by the JBS which scores the voting behavior of members of Congress gives "poor" or "fail" scores to many members of Congress whom the left-wing thinks are indistinguishable from the JBS!
  • Reply to: How Charles Koch Backed the John Birch Society at the Height of Its Attacks on Martin Luther King   1 week 2 days ago
    Lisa: the original message I posted was very similar to the one I am re-posting below. I should add, however, that I certainly respect the research which Jane Mayer has done. She is one of the very few people whom have sought to discover new primary source documentation. My point continues to be that we do not really know a lot (for certain) about the reasons why Fred or Charles Koch joined the JBS. It appears that Charles has never discussed this although one of his former friends (Gus diZerega), gave Jane Mayer some details which Jane summarized in her August 2010 article "Covert Operations" published in The New Yorker magazine. [truncated for space]