August 5, 2014


The Public School Counterinsurgency Field Manual. Their means may not be military, but across this great land, insurgent extremists are at work attacking public institutions and undermining the citizenry’s confidence in the same. Our public schools are on the front lines. In certain regions, the school casualties mount. Witness the “murder” of public schools in Philadelphia, the cyber attacks by virtual ed. corporations on brick-and-mortar schooling in Tennessee, the “policy of neighborhood school closing in Chicago”, and the battles being fought in Milwaukee, “ground zero for school privatization.”  Huffington Post

Campbell Brown Won’t Say Who Is Funding Her School Privatizing Group. With Michelle Rhee’s effort to bust the teachers unions falling flat from incompetence and corruption, the privatizing crowd wanted a new face for the brand and found one with former news anchor Campbell Brown. Brown, who is married to former Bush apparatchik Dan Senor, is ready for her debut as the new face of “ed reform.” But can a new facade fool the people? Campbell Brown recently went on the Colbert Report to promote the group she heads, the Partnership for Educational Justice (PEJ). During the interview it became clear that Brown was not interested in revealing who was funding the group. First she tried to claim it was the law firm handling the case, Kirkland Ellis, but eventually admitted she would not be disclosing the donors.  Firedoglake

Detroit’s water crisis is a wake-up call to all Americans – commentary. . . Detroit’s bankruptcy and subsequent state-run emergency management system are not excuses to suspend human rights. In the age of growing privatization of public services in the U.S., it is more important than ever for Americans to assert that their fundamental rights are not for sale. International human rights laws have explicit standards regarding access to water. They also protect access to health care, education, housing and safe working conditions. These rights are not based on our wealth, race, religion, sexual orientation, immigration status or city of residence. They belong to all people. . . .The water crisis in Detroit is a wake-up call. The list of shockingly basic resources that Americans are forced to fight for continues to grow. We must all take stock and demand a halt to the erasure of our basic human rights. Al Jazeera America

CA: Public officials object to 405 toll lanes. With the steady hum of morning traffic behind them, officials from cities along Orange County’s 405 freeway gathered in Costa Mesa on Thursday to decry a state proposal to add toll lanes to the busy thoroughfare. . . . Caltrans’ decision comes amid universal opposition to the idea from the Orange County Transportation Authority board and affected cities along 405. OCTA’s board in December had approved a toll-free option. Mansoor, a former Costa Mesa mayor now running for county supervisor, called Caltrans’ decision “a money grab.”  San Jose Mercury News

CA: Commentary: The taxpayers didn’t vote for a toll road. It’s simply highway robbery. Caltrans is trying to hijack traffic lanes that would have already been paid for by our local tax dollars on the San Diego Freeway and turn them into toll lanes.  For several years now, Orange County cities along the 405 Freeway have given Caltrans the same, unwavering message: We would like to see the freeway from Seal Beach to Costa Mesa expanded but don’t install the toll lanes.  Daily Pilot