Archive for Monday, September 7, 2009

Obama exhorts kids to pay attention in school

September 7, 2009


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— In a speech that drew fire even before he delivered it, President Barack Obama is telling the nation’s schoolchildren he “expects great things from each of you.”

“At the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world,” Obama said. “And none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities.”

The White House posted Obama’s remarks on its Web site at midday Monday. He’s scheduled to deliver the talk from Wakefield High School in suburban Arlington, Va., today. It will be broadcast live on C-SPAN and on the White House Web site.

Obama’s planned talk has proven controversial, with several conservative organizations and individuals accusing him of trying to pitch his arguments too aggressively in a local-education setting. White House officials, including Education Secretary Arne Duncan, have said the allegations are silly.

Obama got a bit of a boost from former first lady Laura Bush on Monday when she said she supported Obama’s decision to address the nation’s school children.

“There’s a place for the president of the United States to talk to school children and encourage school children” to stay in school, Mrs. Bush, a former school teacher, said in a CNN interview.

When told some parents were keeping their children home because of the president’s address, she said “that’s their right … to choose what they want their children to hear in school.”

She added that it was “really important for everyone to respect the president of the United States.”

And Florida Republican party chairman Jim Greer, who said last week he was “absolutely appalled that taxpayer dollars are being used to spread President Obama’s socialist ideology,” said Monday he now favored the speech after changes he said the White House, under political pressure, had made to supporting materials for teachers and to the speech itself.

“It’s a good speech,’ Greer told ABC News. “It encourages kids to stay in school and the importance of education, and I think that’s what a president should do when they’re going to talk to students across the country.”

In a Labor Day speech in Cincinnati, Obama mentioned his upcoming address. “I’m going to have something to say tomorrow to our children telling them to stay in school and work hard ’cause that’s the right message to send.”

“It’s a sad state of affairs that many in this country politically would rather start an ‘Animal House’ food fight rather than inspire kids to stay in school, to work hard, to engage parents to stay involved, and to ensure that the millions of teachers that are making great sacrifices continue to be the best in the world,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday. “It’s a sad state of affairs.”

In the prepared remarks, Obama tells young people that all the work of parents, educators and others won’t matter “unless you show up to those schools, pay attention to those teachers.”

Obama made no reference in his prepared remarks to the uproar surrounding his speech. Nor did he make an appeal for support of tough causes like health care reform. He used the talk to tell kids about his at-times clumsy ways as a child and to urge them to identify an area of interest, set goals and work hard to achieve them.

The president also warned students that if they quit on school, “you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country.”

Obama acknowledged that “being successful is hard,” but told the students the country badly needs their best effort to cope in an increasingly competitive global economy.

“What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country,” Obama says. “What you’re learning in school today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future.”


John Kyle 8 years, 8 months ago

So I guess the conservatives want kids to drop out and not try hard? There is absolutely nothing wrong with this speech. I wish these racist conservatives would just accept the fact that your president is not white and shut something constructive like read a book.

eric1889 8 years, 8 months ago

President Bush also asked students to write him letters on how to make the country better. Why is alright for a Republican president to ask, but not Obama?

GardenMomma 8 years, 8 months ago

Oh, but don't you see? Uneducated masses are much more easier to manipulate than educated masses. That's the root of the uproar.

parrothead8 8 years, 8 months ago

"Oh, but don't you see? Uneducated masses are much more easier to manipulate than educated masses."

Here lies the heart of the matter. Conservative Republican leaders know that the future of their party depends on being able to sway the masses who don't want to think for themselves. Educated people pose a risk to that strategy.

It's sad that this has boiled down to politics. In truth, the future of this country is neither Republican nor Democrat, but somewhere in the middle. The educated kids will figure that out.

RogueThrill 8 years, 8 months ago

I'd tend to think that the furor over The Anointed One's Orwellian sales pitch has caused him to alter it for tomorrow. Very weak leader, poor administration, disastrous congress.


Or, you know, you can look at it the way sane human beings do and realize there was never going to be any "socialist indoctrination." You guys are in such a hurry to paint Obama as some far left wacko when he isn't left at all.

RogueThrill 8 years, 8 months ago

No, more like I am disappointed that he isn't taking this opportunity to be left and is instead giving Republicans a seat at the table. If I had my way he'd be the progressive I voted for.

Instead I have Bush, Jr. 2 with less Christian overtones.

beatrice 8 years, 8 months ago

barryp, people didn't have a problem with Bush reading "The Pet Goat" to children. It was his continuing to sit there reading for an additional 7 minutes after being told "the nation is under attack" that people had a problem with.

FreshAirFanatic 8 years, 8 months ago

"Here lies the heart of the matter. Conservative Republican leaders know that the future of their party depends on being able to sway the masses who don't want to think for themselves. Educated people pose a risk to that strategy."

Funny. Isn't this how Obama got elected?

Fame...change...look at the color of my skin. No substance...all style. Many were saying back way back in Nov '08 that we don't know a thing about this guy, yet the masses were flocking to him.

Now the world finds out what he's about and his poll numbers drop like a rock, leaders of other nations snub him and all he can think is..."I need to make another speech...or 2...or 3."

Jimo 8 years, 8 months ago

"...the furor over The Anointed One's Orwellian sales pitch has caused him to alter it for tomorrow."

Ooohh!! Your erratic gibberish averted Armageddon and the sad part is that most of us will never recognize your farseeing protection of our little ones.

That, or you can't admit you're more excitable that a little girl watching horror movies. Squeal, piggy, squeal!!!

RogueThrill 8 years, 8 months ago

You'll find that exhort and extort are two different words with two very different meanings. The article uses exhort.

Nordic123 8 years, 8 months ago

Wow. Interesting that some parents teach their children that the President of the United States is not someone they want them to listen to what he has to say. Interesting that it's okay in history to pick and choose when it's okay for our President to address Our children. Mostly disasters. Let's help them understand. Instead, we have a President wanting to instill the value of education and the importance of learning and we have adults who have an agenda all their own ready to taint the minds of their children and to not respect the President of the United States and what he has to say to them.. I am SADDENED. Our kids are our future. They need to understand authority. They need to listen to authority. Put your bipartisan fingerpointing aside and start teaching your kids the value to listening to authority. Teach them to sort through the information. Talk about it at dinner. Digest it. And then wake up to a new day on Wednesday. Pleeeeaaase!

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"Why is it liberals always say conservatives are racist or uneducated?"

Why is it conservatives always latch on to the one, maybe two yahoos who drop the race card and make it representative?

Both of these questions have the same answer!

Because it's convenient and doesn't require thought.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

As for uneducated, well this whole thing has been about conservatives freaking out about Obama addressing children in school, about the certain brainwashing that was going to take place, without reading the speech at all (since the content was unavailable). Then, when the content was available, continuing for a good half day to scream about brainwashing anyway because they didn't read the content (you know "educating" themselves), then some few read the content and suggested that since people said beforehand that they didn't like the idea of brainwashing, Obama said "oh" and changed his speech entirely, leaving out the brainwashing part, which was the whole speech, and made this new speech about kids taking their learning seriously.

But no, nothing in there suggests a lack of education.

I'll here concede that this is not the response of "conservatives" though. I'm sure that there are a great number, likely a large majority, of highly or at least well-educated people who have a philophical leaning towards conservatism that have not been going into hysterics because "Obama" and "children" got put in the same headline. So what I really mean is "idiot partisan psuedo-conservatives who frequent this board and others, Glenn Beck, and any other idiot who has been shrieking about this irrationally for the last two days."

I hope that was specific enough to not be considered a general attack against conservatism. There are some good ideas, and some good brains, in the conservative camp. Too bad not enough in the media or in the legislature, but that's a liberal problem too, it seems.

monkeywrench1969 8 years, 8 months ago

Divide and conquer...while both sides of the argument attack each other it takes away from the fact both the house and the senate need a strong cleaning with people who will compromise with the best interests of education social welfare and national security which means fighting the wars we are in the middle of until they are finished the right way.

The masses are educated but have no voice on either side of the aisle and the people in congress can not meet in the middle because they are too busy trying to continue to be the major "haves". Dems, Reps, Libertarians and independents have a problem with everything going on because it is hypocritical and the change asked for in the election has not occurred.

People are also tired of being call racist because what they don't agree with is not fundamentally conservative. The same garbage was pushed with Clinton but not at such an extreme level. As long as it is a two party system neither of the two sides will budge.

Sigmund 8 years, 8 months ago

"Obama exhorts kids to pay attention in school"

Yes they should! And for extra credit they can calculate how long it will take them to pay off their share of the Bush/Obama debt. Those little rugrats are already tens of thousands of dollars in debt (which is compounding daily) and what do they get for it? A free lunch (well there ain't no thing as a 'free lunch', demonstrate and show your work) and a third world education by a bunch of Union workers who are too unskilled to get a real UAW job.

Put a "debt clock" in the hallway of every school and teach them their reality as wages slaves to the giant corporations who the government bailed out with their future and against the will of 98% of the voters. Next week we will read, "Why Did My Two Mommies Sell Me Into Slavery To Big Government and GM?" That should yield some lively discussions.

Nordic123 8 years, 8 months ago

Sigmund is harboring way too much resentment. Get a grip and good night's sleep. And then lay off the Fox that feeds you.

ScottyMac 8 years, 8 months ago

LarryNative says: "Bush was not told we were under attack. He was told that a plane had hit one of the towers. It was not until the second plane hit that we knew it was an attack."

Wrong. Bush was told of the first plane crash before he did his infamous photo-op. He went ahead with the photo-op instead of oh, leading or something. Maybe it was an accident, but why did they take their chances?

After the second crash, Bush continued with the photo-op. He sat there reading The Pet Goat for several minutes. Then, he continued to lolly-gag around the school for another thirty minutes.

Tom McCune 8 years, 8 months ago

Here is what the lunatic fringe is really worried about….

The kids will go to school, listen to the speech, come home, and say, “Daddy, the speech was OK. Kind of boring, but OK. But I didn't see any horns. You said he has horns and a forked tail. He seems like a nice man to me.”

Katara 8 years, 8 months ago

TomShewmon (Tom Shewmon) says… “What happened to “Mr_Nancy_Boy_to_you”? Did you get disappeared and come back?” -porch

If you had half a brain and were as smart as you try to portay yourself, you could have clicked a couple times and figured that out on your own. No, I changed my user name. Is that OK with you? ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Out of curiosity, why did you change your username?

Sigmund 8 years, 8 months ago

Nordic123 (Anonymous) says… "Sigmund is harboring way too much resentment. Get a grip on reality and good night's sleep. And then lay off the Fox that feeds you."

It would be nice if your presented some facts to refute my major points instead of personal attacks. Get a good nights sleep you are going to need it. Did you support TARP I under Bush or TARP II under Obama? Do you know how much your share of the debt is? Do you understand the concept of compounded interest? Sweet dreams and when you wake up get a grip with unemployment rate at a 26 year high and you and your kids are deeper in debt. I think any responsible parent would want to teach kids their economic reality.

overthemoon 8 years, 8 months ago

Jonas. I can tell from your many posts your are operating in a tangential universe. You think that expressing rational, reasonable ideas and opinions will somehow make a difference and encourage a thoughtful debate. Unfortunately, the real universe that we live in no longer recognizes rational or thoughtful debate. Its all about claiming, as per Shewmon, et al, that the "other" is extreme, that there are bogey men in the corners, and that educating our children is a socialist conspiracy.

Ah Jonas. Read or reread "Fahrenheit 411" or "1984" and you will understand that reason is an outdated and useless tactic. The ignorant rule, and we might as well get used to it...while we weep for the future of our country at the hands of the growing fascist and utterly insane right.

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 8 months ago

Corollary to the Theory on Conservatives: Except babies. They want to save the hell out of babies. Well, unless they grow up and become lesbian, gay, transgender, pagan, Hindu, Muslim etc...

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 8 months ago

Obviously conservatives are wellsprings of reason and logic, while liberals are just batsh*t insane. (/sarcasm) By the way Tom, you might need to freshen and refold your tinfoil hat.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

overthemoon: I know. I guess I happen to just enjoy my parallel little universe, much more so than the other.

At any rate, my large number of posts recently have been more of a result of being layed out with sciatica, rather than operating under the idea that I will shape the overall dialog of this site to any great degree. I've been here a long, long time.

Ralph Reed 8 years, 8 months ago

I guess nobody listened to what the President said, or read the text of his speech. In reaction to several posts: There was no BS. The President didn't try to brainwash our children. He doesn't have horns and a forked tail. etc. ad nauseum.

I saw it as a very straight forward speech. Do what you're supposed to do in school and you'll have a leg up on a better life. You blow everything off and you'll be at the bottom of the food chain.

I even checked Faux News and they were hard pressed to find something wrong with the text of the speech. The closest they could come was a statement that the White House under this administration is very insular. I ask you to check every administration except Andrew Jackson; they were all insular.

I'll wait for the name calling from the regional Beck/Palin/Limbaugh/O'Reilly/Coulter melange, and accusations that I'm brainwashed already.

Ralph Reed 8 years, 8 months ago

Oh yes, it's really pathetic when our society has reached a point at which parents won't let the President be heard by students.

I didn't like GW's policies and actions, yet my son and I listened and discussed what he said. He turned out OK. So why are you afraid to let your children listen to President Obama?

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

All you Liberal Whack Jobs missed the main point the conservative movement was trying to make. It wasn't about a speech. No one knew what the speech said and no one argued against letting the president speak to school children, not even Fox News. The problem laid with the propaganda the White House distributed to teachers to give to students and the clearly biased questions and activities it proposed. It was accurately painted as an effort to portray BHO as a saint, not as an overspending, far left, puppet. These materials were partisan at best, socialist at worst. This was further evidenced by the White House's retraction of them. Speak to the kids about the importance of education, fine. Force feed them your liberal agenda and use taxpayer dollars to do it, not OK, REALLY not OK.

Ralph Reed 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm surprised it took as long as it did before the name-calling began. Try reposting without the name calling, zstoltenberg. I stopped reading after your first line, "All you Liberal Whack Jobs ..."

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"I was making a point that the vast ghettos of America vote strictly democratic. These voters are the least educated in our society."

Almost like the Democrats are the only ones who occasionally deign to notice them and their problems.

But do you have a statistic on how many of them even vote? Most reliable stats on turnout suggest that 40% of the voting age population don't vote. I might be going out on a limb, but I'm willing to guess that a rather sizeable number of those might be those in the "vast ghettos" of America where the least educated and most-burned out live.

Or, I suppose it could be the educated people with a liberal persuasion who don't turn out, and it's the ghetto burnouts who vote in droves, because they are so easy to motivate to take responsibility for themselves.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"All you Liberal Whack Jobs missed the main point the conservative movement was trying to make."

I wonder if that had anything to do with this supposed. . . did you say "point?". . . being buried under seas of screaming about socialists, brainwashing, indocrination, liberal whack jobs, etc.? Nah.

Because we all know that all of these screaming harridins actually read the class exercise that went along with the speech.


/no one missed the conservatives' real point. "Obama" and "children" appeared in the same headlines. Rationalization came later, after the kneejerk reaction.

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm trying to figure out where all these "vast ghettos" are at. North Lawrence? If such "vast ghettos" truly exist, don't you think it says something about American society that there are such overwhelming numbers of poor/working poor in an industrialized first world nation?

So, who all actually read the "study materials" released by ED prior to the speech? Don't everybody knock me down in the rush to raise your hands.

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

"What “propaganda” was the White House distributing? Do you have some you would like to share or is that also coming straight out of your a$$? Try not to be so obvious next time, astroturfer." - Porch_Person

Point Proven, thank you for illustrating what I meant by "Liberal Whack Job"

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

The original teaching materials released stated:

"Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the president. These would be collected and redistributed at an appropriate later date by the teacher to make students accountable to their goals."

And it has been changed to this:

"Write letters to themselves about how they can achieve their short-term and long-term education goals. These would be collected and redistributed at an appropriate later date by the teacher to make students accountable to their goals."

Propaganda is the deliberate spread of information or ideas meant to help or harm a person, group, or institution. "What can you do to help the president" sounds like propaganda to me. I wasn't making anything up, no "false claims" or pulling anything out of anywhere. A quick internet search could have afforded you the same information I have, sparing your gaffe and name calling. Keep laughing like the idiot you are making yourself out to be.

Derek Neibarger 8 years, 8 months ago

the hypocrisy and idiocy of the anti-obama movement is astounding, and more than a little sad.

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 8 months ago

I so agree with you pp. (laughs) I can see it now! Kids are going to come home from school wearing Birkenstocks, believing in global warming and evolution. They will have t-shirts on with the female symbol in a raised fist on the front and "Bring our troops home NOW" on the back. Worst of all they will be carrying signs that say (GASP!) "Health insurance for all!" (After this little exercise in visualization I need to go take my heart medication and lay down. I can't take the horror. I just hope little Johnny's tinfoil hat stayed on at school today.)

Jimo 8 years, 8 months ago

NYT: After reading the text on Monday, even Jim Greer, the Florida Republican Party chairman who last week accused the president of seeking to use the speech to foist “socialist ideology” on schoolchildren, said he could find nothing to criticize in its text. "In its current form, it’s fine,” Mr. Greer said in an interview. “But it remains to be seen if it’s the speech he’s going to give.”

As Gilda Radner would have put it as Rosana Rosanadana "Never mind!! "

newbee2 8 years, 8 months ago

Do you know what scares me? There seems to be a faction of people in this country that would rather see our country fail, then to work towards bi-partisanship and solving our problems. Or maybe they just want Obama to fail because they are scared or racist or because he isn't "their president". Get over it! Grow up! No one is saying you can't have a voice of opposition on political matters (like healthcare) but is it really necessary to take it to the lowest of lows...."he is trying to brainwash the children". Let's stop the nonsense and get down to solving real problems. And for those of you that think you got all the answers and can do a better job than any person having the courage to try, then run for President, or Senate or something worthwhile and stop spouting off anonymously online.

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

Porch_Person, The materials are available on the department of Ed's Website as well as the AP and numerous other news sources. To answer your question, nothing is wrong with helping the President. Again, you ask a ridiculous rhetorical question in an attempt to squelch rational arguments. What IS wrong is creating a situation in which students are made to feel wrong for not helping the president or not agreeing with the president. No alternative was offered. It was stated in a way that seemed to suggest "You WILL help the president, now what can you do?" That is the exact definition of Propaganda. I'm sorry, I respect the president for his position but I refuse to stand by silently while he takes over the mortgage industry, the banking industry, the automotive industry, and now an attempt to take over health care. Never in the history of our country has one man made so many major decisions and had control over so many aspects of our culture. It should scare you as it does me. Voicing my opposition is about the most American thing I can do! And because I disagree with Obama's Socialist Agenda doesn't make me a racist and it doesn't make me Partisan, it makes me American. And Newbee 2, don't lecture me about spouting off online. My username is my name, I stand behind my beliefs and what I say. You, however are an anonymous user for what, about a week now? Why don't you use your real name when criticizing others?

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

With the topic of the speech, perhaps what the original version was implying is exactly the same as the second version. Help the president do what? Improve our country? Improve our educational value, and educational competitiveness with the other big nations like China, Japan, and India? Or help him overthrow the bourgeois pigs with a proletariat revolt? Ram through nationalized health care? Get rid of guns? He's not talking to them about any of those.

I guess the answer just depends on where you sit. But if you don't start out with the belief that he is particularly evil (well, anymore than another politician at least), Hitler, the anti-Christ, out to enslave us, etc., it's really hard to understand the problem.

To me it looks like a concerted effort to make this into an active project from a passive one, on the notion that without it kids might just doze off and the whole point would be lost.

But again, we've known about that for awhile, and we've noticed the pointing and moaning at that phrase. But of course there's been no real non-paranoid explanation for why that's a problem. Just going: it's propaganda! is superficial. Telling kids to learn can be viewed as propaganda, under the sternest gaze. Doesn't make it true.

Jimo 8 years, 8 months ago

zstoltenberg, "It was stated in a way that seemed to suggest “You WILL help the president, now what can you do?” That is the exact definition of Propaganda."

Actually, it might seem to suggest that --- to the paranoid.

Strangely, your response provides an appropriate answer: Dear Mr. President, my best way to help you is to point out that what you propose isn't helpful and undermines the principles I believe this country was founded upon. You need to think again about your proposals just like I had to think again about this letter two times! Sincerely, Sally.

Unfortunately, the wingnuts decided to scrap that sort of thoughtful response for: Socialism! mwahhhh Thought Control! Aliens! Czars!! Socialism, I tell you!! hissss Demons! bark! bark! Kenya! Fascist! Nazi! mooo! The Mark of the Beast! Budget deficit, how did that get there? Boo!

I suggest only one approach would have provided a reasonable 'learning moment' for all. Maybe now that you've been exposed as a fraud and are understandably embarrassed and defensive you can learn for the next time (there always is a next time with the crazies) that you need to win over the moderate voters not frighten them away. That might require a 'Sister Souljah' moment for the Republicans, ceasing to embrace certifiably insane and poisonous individuals and pointedly demanding that GOP be make "nut free".

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

Here's your darn link. Again, making a bigger issue out of the source than the content itself. BTW, this exact story ran in the LJ world earlier this week. I also attest that any time the government becomes the largest shareholder in any industry it is a takeover. When a private business does this it is referred to as a hostile takeover, and Yes, Porchie, the last question was on health care, obviously a planted question and even if not the appropriate response would have been to return the discussion to education. And Jimo, how come I'm supposed to compromise my ideals and values or be labeled a "crazy" I never stated any of the BS rant YOU went off on. The only one coming across as "crazy" is you.

stumpy101 8 years, 8 months ago

Ok. Wtf? Obama is trying to push kids and just everyday people to do thier best in life. He's not telling them what to do, or how to do it, just stating that they need to do their best. So why are there so many people complaining over this. Children need people who know for a fact how hard and how difficult life is, to try to get them to understand it now before they are just forced out into the world. People need to understand that YOU MUST do your best everyday in life to make it anywhere. What's the use in living life to be a bum and do nothing. We all need to do our best, know matter what it is we're doing.

Americans may not always agree with Obama or what he has to say, but this message right here is something we all need to here and understand. Life is hard and difficult, and we all need to do our best in order to make it threw. I'm only 17 and already I see how hard life is, and how much you have to work and try your best. One of these days the U.S. will be counting on the, now children, to run the world. Do we not want them to be well educated, and someone who will do their best to be the ones in office. Their is nothing wrong with Obama's speech. In fact he needs to give more speechs. People need to look at their own life and admit to themselves how wonderful it would be for their children to do better and to have more oppertunities then what they did.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"the last question was on health care, obviously a planted question and even if not the appropriate response would have been to return the discussion to education."

Are you suggesting that a ninth grader would not be able to have his own opinion on health care, or awareness of current national debates? Or that Obama should just shut him down and ignore his question or concern?

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm saying most ninth graders I know don't care, yes. The question sounded like it was beyond the capability of the average ninth grader and even if it was, Obama should have stayed on track with the intentions of the speech. Perhaps he could have addressed the student afterward.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"The question sounded like it was beyond the capability of the average ninth grader."

It's rather sad that you have so little faith in our youth to entertain the possibility that just one of them, having the opportunity to have a Q&A with the president, would not be able to put a working sentence together or have an opinion.

Oh well. You do show how far you're willing to go to confirm your likely pre-conceived opinion. We've certainly earned your condemnation as "liberal whack-jobs."

kugrad 8 years, 8 months ago

zstoltenberg, you are 100% full of crap. Obviously, you never even looked at the lesson plans and just took some blowhard echochamber windbags word for it. If you looked at them, you would see there is nothing biased at all about them. They are very straightforward, not that you would know a good lesson plan if you saw one as you are obviously not an educator. You are dead wrong about the furor only being over the lesson plans. How convenient to say that now that the speech is over and was clearly non-political. You need to save face for being among the morons who opposed what was clearly a very worthy attempt by the president to inspire children. Public education needs all the support it can get; your apparent functional illiteracy is proof of that. If it wasn't about the speech, why did the main blowhard, Greer of Florida, back off once he read it? It was about the speech, the lesson plans was the backup argument given the TOTAL lack of evidence about the speech. When asked to present facts about the speech, the wingnuts couldn't, so they turned, en masse, to the lesson plan argument. Get over yourself and quit talking as though you know about topics you are clueless about. Admit it, you never downloaded those lesson plans from the Dept. of Ed. website, let alone spend the time to read them. I did, both before and after the very minor revisions, and there was no hidden agenda, just an honest attempt to inspire kids to set goals and be accountable for their own education. You and your ilk screwed this one up.

tomatogrower 8 years, 8 months ago

Greer tried to back track, because he knew that they had gone too far. He was trying to take it back, but the damage is done. The conservatives are cutting off their nose, because they are so obsessed with putting down anything President Obama says or does. They would stop eating hamburgers, if it was known that President Obama ate them. They would start saying that there is socialist brain chemical in ground beef. At least we could get them to start eating locally. What a joke!

Maddy Griffin 8 years, 8 months ago

This whole debate on his speech is just another steaming pile of hot mess! After all the crap I sat through as a child in school, I can't believe any parent could be so un-patriotic as to forbid their child from listening to the President's speech although I understand a few did show up and pull their kids from class during the speech. How embarrassing that must have been for the kids when all their peers were watching it My grandkids came home asking questions about how to set goals like Obama said. If that's the worst we get from this POTUS, we should all give thanks . He actually inspired a REAL conversation!!

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

It looks like Porchi and KU Grad have already been "indoctrinated.". I could argue till I'm blue in the face and you'd be picking apart details with no real argument as to the issue. Care to source your dates Porch? Need I remind you that all those resolutions passed by a narrow margin under a democratic controlled congess? And I know for a fact that the "takeover" not the bailout of Chrysler and GM happened under Obama, he set the deadline! Why is it that you all fly off the handle with the liberal psychobabble everytine anyone dares challege "THE ONE.". And you wonder why parents freak out? I never said I had a problem with BHO encouraging kids to stay in school. I would have liked to see him encourage them to stay off drugs, but that would have been a bit hipocrittical... The only thing I said I disagreed with was the intent to force students into a position where they were seen as wrong for disagreeing with the president or his agenda. Then along comes emj throwing the race card. I don't care if Obama's pink, purple, or polka dotted, I think he's wrong and he's dangerous. And don't pretend you know me from the info I have on my profile Porchie. What makes you think I'm a grad student? I have a masters degree and got a very fine public education. One that taught me the history of this country, the values it was founded upon, and the privaledges it affords, one of the greatest of which is the right to freely question and criticize our representative leaders. And yes KUGrad I did download the PDFs, the link was on the page I posted and listed the language that changed porchie. I guess you can lead a horse to water and in this case, he'll die if thirst. Better than choking on the sweet waters of truth.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"I guess you can lead a horse to water and in this case, he'll die if thirst. Better than choking on the sweet waters of truth."

I don't think this maxim will ever catch on.

kugrad 8 years, 8 months ago

zstoltenberg, you are the 'indoctrinated' one, who is just repeating the party line; ridiculous claims Obama is "dangerous." I am quite sure you did NOT download the PDF's from the ed site prior to the address and prior to the slight changing of perhaps 2 sentences. All you did is paste the slight difference between them from some article you found online - I'm sure it wasn't your own comparision. I'm sure you aren't qualified to assess lesson plans anyway, as you prove by disingenously finding something sinister in them that simply is/was not there. The reason you will never convince me of anything is your acceptance of the manufactured theory that something was wrong in the first place. Once you admit you were wrong about the speech, which you were, and the lesson plans, which you never read in their entirity, then you might gain some credibility. Until then you are simply another internet bluffer with google.

jimmyjms 8 years, 8 months ago

"I have a masters degree and got a very fine public education."

Uh huh. So what? Unless your masters is in public administration or political science, that doesn't really help your case.

Jimo 8 years, 8 months ago

"I never stated any of the BS rant YOU went off on."

Of course not. Those were the other crazy people being quoted but do please tell exactly how you disagree with the other crazies so the rest of us can distinguish. Until then, as far as I'm concerned, in the immortal words of Sarah Palin, you're palling around with terrorists and reflective of their radical views.

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

I was under the impression that any education was a good thing. Are you seriously criticizing someone for being educated Jimmyjms? KUGrad are you suggesting that news sites, i.e. ap, politico, cnn, fox, etc. are not reliable and reputable sources to become informed? Even our own esteemed urinal world features articles pulled from these news sources. And there is no manufactured theory and I could care less about convincing you of buttkiss. You keep trying to make an argument about the speech which I have never stated I had a problem with. How dare I deviate from the hard right winger you want me to be. Heavens knows you wouldn't know what to do. The question I posed was this, "If there wasn't anything wrong with the materials, why did they retract them?" Their revision acknowledges that they, not I, saw something that obviously was there and did pose a problem. And porchie, you continue to miss my point. Instead of focusing on me personally and making attacks about my education, profession, from what you can dig up from an old internet site, try to actually debate the issue. Every time I confront you about a reall issue and you feel caught in a corner, you make a personal attack to keep from having to make an intelligible argument. Asking for a source that was quoted in every major news outlet in the country and splashed across the pages of every newspaper in the country? Like I said, changing debate to a source instead of the issue. The first link talked about the Dept. of Ed changing the materials, do you honestly want to debate the fact that it happened? The second linked to a page that allowed you to download two PDFs, one k-6 and one 7-12. If you download the PDF you can see it was changed. Telling someone your "busted" doesn't make it true. I wasn't "busted" doing anything. Perhaps this is why you all clamor to protect the reputation of "THE ONE," keep saying something over and over till everyone accepts it as truth. No thanks, I will continue to question everything this president does and will resist the media fluff you all seem to have accepted as absolute truth.

jimmyjms 8 years, 8 months ago

"I was under the impression that any education was a good thing."

Indeed. But a masters in art history, or (insert topic here) doesn't, in itself, make your opinion more or less valid than someone who doesn't have a masters degree.

As for the rest of that, I think you're confusing me with someone else, as I never said anything about being "busted."

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

Try reading it again. Where did I claim my opinion was more valid? Please quote the text, and I address who my comments are intended for.

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

You really do need more help than I can give...

Zachary Stoltenberg 8 years, 8 months ago

So why again is it your job to make sure that anyone who disagrees with "THE ONE" reconsiders their position? Why is a position opposing the president falsehood? The fact is you haven't made a single intelligible argument yet. You've continued to make arguments against positions I never took, i.e. "encouraging kids to stay in school isn't ok" and have chose to make mountains out of mole hills by questioning citations because you have no answer to the question raised. Instead of presenting a rational argument, you got personal, called names, and proved what a "schmuck" you are. It's probably a good thing you post anonymously, they'd institutionalize you if they knew who you were.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"KUGrad are you suggesting that news sites, i.e. ap, politico, cnn, fox, etc. are not reliable and reputable sources to become informed?"

I have no idea what he said but I will say that yes, these are not reliable and reputable sources to become informed. The left and center says that Fox is out to lunch, the right says everybody else is out to lunch, the reality is that all of them operate by their ratings, which are helped by scandalous BS rather than an obvious effort to inform. Examples of media bias or distortation are too numerous to count.

I will say, though, that checking a few of them and comparing, maybe some other internet sources, some papers, them maybe you might have an accurate picture.

The 4th estate. Few restrictions, few responsabilities, just rights.

The question I posed was this, “If there wasn't anything wrong with the materials, why did they retract them?”

Because the right flipped out, like it inevitably, and this administration is still operating under the misguided assumption that there are things that it can do, or ways in which to do it, that will please the conservative media and the rabid right that listens to it, or even keep it from criticizing the administration.

jonas_opines 8 years, 8 months ago

"If you download the PDF you can see it was changed."

Ummm. . . how? I saw nowhere on that pdf anything that said "This Section Has Been Changed!" or anything remotely similar to that. I saw no evidence of doctoring, and I saw no initial draft for reference to show that it was changed. So how can you see that it was changed?

You have one line that was changed, according to the media and sources in the White House. The above quotes that you gave about how it portrayed the president sound insane. You seem too able to put sentences together for me to think you are insane, so I think you are just biased.

"No thanks, I will continue to question everything this president does and will resist the media fluff you all seem to have accepted as absolute truth."

Well, that would be good. The only problem is that you seem to, far from resisting it, accept the media fluff that goes Against the president as absolute or at least near certain truth. Just judging from your words on this thread. They are all there, it's ridiculous to deny some of the things that you have said. Such as:

"It was accurately painted as an effort to portray BHO as a saint, not as an overspending, far left, puppet."

Which sounds like the definition of bias to me. I would say, just at first blush, that if the material portrayed Obama as an overspending, far-left puppet, then it would fit the definition of propaganda quite well.

It's somewhat amusing that you seem to think that you're doing well here. It's pretty obvious to everybody that you're floundering quite a lot.

Jimo 8 years, 8 months ago

"President says he will give speech to schoolchildren.

Republicans say the speech will be full of leftist propaganda

Parents run in circles flailing arms overhead while screaming and shouting.

Some school officials black out Obama’s speech. (racist comment)

Grinning speechwriters prepare speech with no leftist propaganda.

Republicans look like fools.

People now more reluctant to listen to conservative complaints about Obama. "

Quote from yesterday's (note the bizarre and unsupported insistence that the speech content was created shortly before the speech regardless of how consistently the speech had been described in some detail for many days in advance). It's as far right as a website you can find without actually going all fringe.

When the nutcases say you're acting like a nutcase perhaps it's time to consider that maybe you really are a nutcase.

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