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Bill Ayers Is an Educator, Remember?


William C. Ayers' name has been coming up time and time again in the presidential race, as Sen. John McCain's campaign tries to use his links to Sen. Barack Obama to cast doubts on the Democratic nominee's character.

But very few folks are talking about Ayers' views on education - or asking whether Obama shares those ideas.

Ayers, a former member of The Weather Underground, a radical 1960's organization, is now an education professor and worked with Obama on Chicago's portion of the Annenberg Challenge, a national school reform effort.

Although it makes for a better sound bite to link Ayers to “terrorism,” Stephen F. Diamond, a Santa Clara University law professor who is a prolific blogger on this issue, says the Republican campaign is missing the bigger point.

He told my co-blogger, Michele McNeil, that what’s more disturbing are Ayers’ views on education, which Diamond says include support of small schools, social justice approaches to teaching, and “race-based” approaches to curriculum.

“Obama and Ayers share these similar views on education. That’s not a sexy or toxic topic,” Diamond said. “But it’s the fundamental issue.”

Diamond told Michele that he’s been surprised that the Obama campaign hasn’t done more to make a clear, unequivocal break from Ayers’ views on education.

But now, Ayers' education views are finally getting some attention.

Back in April, Sol Stern, a scholar at the Manhattan Institute, wrote this piece on Ayers' ideas on social justice teaching. It's now getting a renewed life; the piece was posted this week on the Web site realclearpolitics, a go-to site for political junkies.

Stern said that no one knows whether Obama agrees with those views.

The next time Obama—the candidate who purports to be our next “education president”—discusses education on the campaign trail, it would be nice to hear what he thinks of his Hyde Park neighbor’s vision for turning the nation’s schools into left-wing indoctrination centers. Indeed, it’s an appropriate question for all the presidential candidates.

Last month, a group of educators (including New York University's Deborah Meier)signed on to a statement defending Ayers. Kevin Carey of Education Sector was unimpressed with the effort.


Heaven forbid schools in the United States should ever include such a foreign concept as social justice!


Unfortunately Ayers view is foreign, as proven by those countries that have adopted it.

ie As Diamond observes, in a 2006 speech in Venezuela, with Leftist strongman Hugo Chavez looking on, Ayers exhorted: “Teaching invites transformations, it urges revolutions small and large."

Do you even begin to understand what Ayers is saying. Obama actively funded this view through CAC and Woods foundations. The purpose of Ayers application was to secure funds to “raise political consciousness” in Chicago’s public schools.(Left view only)Thats in the application!

This may help clear things up for you

Small Schools Network run by Ayers' comrade from the 60s, ex-Maoist Mike Klonsky.

Sam Graham-Felsen - joined Obama for America in March 2007 where he works for the New Media department as the official blogger Now he's under fire for his reputed Marxist sympathies

James Meeks - Barack Obama said was a spiritual adviser and/or guide.

Father Michael Pfleger you’ve seen the video.

What about Obama's mentor "Frank" is Frank Marshall Davis, who was publicly identified as a member of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA).

Marilyn Katz has said of her activities that she wanted the U.S. to become a socialist paradise. She is a close friend of Barack Obama. Katz is a member of Obama's national finance committee.

Rev Wright you've seen that video as well.

I forgot another important one.

State Sen. Alice Palmer who CHOSE Obama as her successor in the Illinois Senate.

Soviet admirer Palmer thought Obama was a worthy heir. Why? Ayers’s group chose Barack Obama to distribute the money.Why?

Alice Palmer was an executive board member of the U.S. Peace Council, which the FBI identified as a communist front group, an affiliate of the World Peace Council, a Soviet front group.
Palmer participated in the World Peace Council's 1983 Prague Assembly, part of the Soviet launch of the nuclear-freeze movement. The only thing it would have frozen was the Soviet Union's military superiority.

In June 1986, while editor of the Black Press Review, she wrote an article for the Communist Party USA's newspaper, the People's Daily World, now the People's Weekly World. It detailed her experience attending the 27th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and how impressed she was by the Soviet system.
Palmer gushed at the "Soviet plan to provide people with higher wages and better education" and spoke of the efficiency of the Soviets' most recent five-year plan, attributing its success to "central planning." She praised their "comprehensive affirmative action program, which they have stuck to religiously — if I can use the word — since 1917."
Palmer also marveled that all Russian citizens were guaranteed a job matching their training and skills, free education, affordable housing and free medical care. Because Soviet school curricula were established at the national level, she said, "there is no second-class 'track' system in the minority-nationality schools as there is in the inferior inner city schools in my hometown, Chicago, and elsewhere in the United States."

Not being left behind are Obama's daughters, who attend the private University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. There, tuition ranges from $15,528 for kindergarten to $20,445 for high school. When asked about it during last year's YouTube debate, Sen. Obama responded that it was "the best option" for his children. They had a choice Obama would deny others.

People who hide their past always have a past worth hiding.

"So, when it comes to his own radical moorings, Obama is engaged in classic misrepresentational behavior. He changes his story as the facts change — and the burden is always on you to dig up the facts, not on him to come clean."


"Ayers view is foreign, as proven by those countries that have adopted it"

I am afraid you will have to become a bit more specific--what view, what countries, how adopted.

Among the roads not take in my life is the one that would have led me into the schools as an English teacher. I have no regrets, but would certainly regret all that I might have missed on the outside, particularly in terms of learning about social justice. But had I followed that course, I might have been required to instruct students on ways to evaluate propaganda. One thing that I might point out is a guilt by association technique--such as the use of the word "comrade" to invoke Soviet connections (whether they exist or not).

I am deeply aware that what is meant by "social justice" when used in an educational context, frequently referring to pedagogy that calls the student to examine the social context of their experience, and may indeed result in personal transformations. So my remark was only a bit tongue in cheek. However, the context of American education faces a significant uphill climb to ever being the vehicle for social justice that some of us (who believe in democracy and opportunity) migh dream that it might be. Despite leading the world in expenditure, we do not lead in achievement, and we do poorly in the equitable distribution of achievement. It is an open question whether our educational system fosters equal opportunity, or limits it.

So, as I look towards retirement in a country that is facing extreme challenges in our financial viability, the prospect of anybody's paradise looks attractive. But even if it were true that Obama and "friends" (however construed) were aiming at a socialist one, I am cognizant that the same powers that led us into this financial mess have not gone away--nor will they stop fighting for their right to a bigger share of the pie. And, in fact, I worry more about them, than anyone who has applied for a grant to build political awareness.

I only wish Obama would be as honest as you.

Thomas Sewell answered your comment when he wrote today in TownHall,com.

" What about those "real issues" that Barack Obama's supporters in the media say we should get back to, whenever some new unsavory fact about his past comes out?

Surely education is a real issue, with American school children consistently scoring below those in other countries, and children in minority communities faring worst of all.

What about Senator Obama's position on this real issue? As with other issues, he has talked one way and acted the opposite way.

The education situation in Obama's home base of Chicago is one of the worst in the nation for the children-- and one of the best for the unionized teachers.

Fewer than one-third of Chicago's high-school juniors meet the statewide standards on tests. Only 6 percent of the youngsters who enter Chicago high schools become college graduates by the time they are 25 years old.

The problem is not money: Chicago spends more than $10,000 per student.

Chicago teachers are doing well. A beginning teacher, fresh out of college, earns more than the city's median income and that can rise to more than $100,000 over the years.

That's for teaching 6 hours a day, 9 months of the year. Moreover, a teacher's income is dependent on seniority and other such factors-- and in no way dependent on whether their students are actually learning anything.

Obama has said eloquent and lofty words about education, as he has about other things-- for example, how it is "unacceptable in a country as wealthy as ours" that some children "are not getting a decent shot at life" because of the failing schools.

In a predominantly black suburb of Chicago, where the average teacher's salary is $83,000 and one-fourth of the teachers make more than $100,000, Barack Obama noted that the school day ends at 1:30 PM.

In his book "Dreams from My Father," Obama said candidly that black teachers and administrators "defend the status quo with the same skill and vigor as their white counterparts of two decades before."

It is not a question of Obama's not knowing. He has demonstrated conclusively that he knows what is going on.

But, for all his eloquent words, he has voted consistently for the teachers' unions and the status quo.

"I owe those unions," he has said frankly. "When their leaders call, I do my best to call them back right away. I don't consider this corrupting in any way."

Only other politicians' special interests are called "special interests" by Barack Obama, whose world-class ability to rationalize is his most frightening skill.

Even when he verbally endorses the reform idea of merit pay for teachers, he cleverly re-defines merit so that it will be measured by teachers themselves, rather than by "arbitrary tests." In other words, Obama placates critics of the educational status quo by being for merit pay in words, while making those words meaningless, so as not to offend the teachers' unions.

The failings of teachers are only part of the disaster of inner city public schools. Disruptive and violent students can make it impossible for even the best teachers to educate students.

Administrators are reluctant to impose any serious punishment on those students who make it impossible for other students to learn. Partly this is because liberal judges can make it literally a federal case if more minority students are punished than others.

In other words, if black males are punished more often than Asian American females, that can be enough to get the administrators drawn into a legal labyrinth, costing money and time, even if the punishment is eventually upheld.

When a bill was introduced into the Illinois state legislature that would put more teeth into suspensions of misbehaving students, Barack Obama voted against that bill.

A real reformer would want to crack down on both unruly students and unaccountable teachers. A clever politician would speak eloquently, demand "change"-- and then vote for the status quo. Obama talks a great game.

Some countries with Ayers education Venezuela, Cuba, North Korea and China in the 70's.

Now on to the Financial mess to which you refer. My actual field of expertise.

Have you read Economics Professor Walter Williams in Townhall.com on 9/17/2008

"Many politicians and pundits claim that the credit crunch and high mortgage foreclosure rate is an example of market failure and want government to step in to bail out creditors and borrowers at the expense of taxpayers who prudently managed their affairs. These financial problems are not market failures but government failure. The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 is a federal law that intimidated lenders into offering credit throughout their entire market and discouraged them from restricting their credit services to low-risk markets, a practice sometimes called redlining. The Federal Reserve Bank, keeping interest rates artificially low, gave buyers and builders incentive to buy and build, thereby producing the housing bubble. Lenders were willing to make creative interest-only loans, often high-risk "no doc" and "liar loans," in order to allow people to buy more housing than they could afford. Of course, with the expectation that housing prices will continue to rise, it was no problem for lenders and borrowers but housing prices began to fall, leaving some people with negative home equity and banks in trouble.

"The credit crunch and foreclosure problems are failures of government policy. In fact, what we see now is a market correction to foolhardy government policy. Congress' move to bailout lenders and borrowers who made poor decisions will simply create incentives for people to make unwise decisions in the future. English philosopher Herbert Spencer said, "The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools."

In January 26, 2005, Senator McCain cosponsored legislation that had it been passed might have averted the current debacle of mortgage loans. It might have saved the taxpayer billions and the fall of venerable financial institutions would not have happened. Senators Elizabeth Dole, John McCain and John Sununu had cosponsored it with Charles Hagel as the Sponsor, all Republicans!
This baby basically is in the lap of the Democrats. In 2005 John McCain put up a bill S190 to reign in Fanny and Freddy Mac, Barney Frank and Co. stopped it. McCain took to the Senate floor in 2006 again warning Congress. Frank gave a speech on how Repubs were stopping low income homeowners from buying homes. Status of Bill: Dead It began when the restrictions were lower by Clinton admin, later , the low interest rates, combined with the bills Dem's put up remove safe guards, lower standards and let investment banks bundle mortgages. SEC remove firebreaks a year ago, on short selling, with the clueless Fed, all combined into a tsunami. The sad part is the bailout might or might not work because it went global. Bush Called For Reform of Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac 17 Times in 2008 Alone... Dems Ignored Warnings"
by GatewayPundit blog.

On Obamas economic beliefs I'll quote Regan
In 1987, Ronald Reagan commented on useful idiots: “How do you tell a Communist? Well, it’s someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It’s someone who understands Marx and Lenin.”

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