Dead Poets Society: Contact Microsoft or the Gates Foundation for Free One-Time Membership

Truth like-like a blanket that always leaves your feet cold.

Y-Y-You push it, stretch it, it’ll never be enough.

You kick at it, beat it, it’ll never cover any of us.

From the moment we enter crying t-to the moment we leave dying,

it’ll just cover your face as you wail and cry and scream.

~ Todd Anderson, The Dead Poets Society, IMBd quotes

Melinda and Bill Gates have attempted to cover the cold hard feet of truth with their blanket of propaganda in order to maintain their status as the richest couple in the world.

However, like in the poem from The Dead Poets Society, the cold feet of truth are always left exposed at some point, in this case for the people of the working class.  This exposure falls too late for some, however in the past weeks, two incidents have been uncovered that have impacted the worlds of real people, both in China and in the United States.

Both of these true stories are connected directly to Melinda and Bill Gates,  one to Microsoft, and one to the Gates Foundation’s control over public education.  Both are related to horrible working conditions caused directly by the Gates’.

Both stories end in desperation and finally in the loss of real human lives – lives precious to the families and co-workers of real human beings not as privileged as the Gates family, but valuable nevertheless.

**Warning- like the movie, the topic and photos are dark and graphic, as the truth is sometimes, and even more often as the Gates take more control over our world.

One such story involves the desperate working conditions, a 300 person suicide threat in protest, and the deaths of 16 workers by suicide at Foxconn – Microsoft’s X-Box manufacturers in China.

The second story, closer to home, involves the deplorable working conditions in a public school – ending in the suicide of a teacher, Mary Thorson, who was a 32-year-old physical education teacher at Cottage Grove Upper Grade Center in Ford Heights, Illinois, who ended her own life on November 24, 2011, citing horrible working conditions as her reason.  These horrible public school working conditions can be traced directly to the education reform and bullying of teachers via demonization of our profession started by none other than Melinda and Bill Gates.

The Gates family has more than any human needs – when it comes to money – and they use it to control the main stream media in their attempt at blanketing the truth with pure propaganda.

Here’s the propaganda and spin created by Microsoft and Gates via the media:

“Microsoft takes working conditions in the factories that manufacture its products very seriously, and we are currently investigating this issue,” the statement said.

“The welfare of our employees is our top priority and we are committed to ensuring that all employees are treated fairly and that their rights are fully protected,” the company statement said. ~ CNN, “Microsoft Probes Mass Suicide Threat at China Plant”

And here’s more propaganda by Gates:

“Microsoft is one of many companies that contracts with Foxconn to manufacture hardware. Upon learning of the labor protest in Wuhan, we immediately conducted an independent investigation of this issue,” starts the statement that comes from a Microsoft spokesperson.

Source: The Inquirer (http://s.tt/15csh)

And more propaganda by Microsoft:

“After the incident, Microsoft gave Kotaku’s Brian Ashcraft the following statement. 

Foxconn has been an important partner of ours and remains an important partner. I trust them as a responsible company to continue to evolve their process and work relationships. That is something we remain committed to—the safe and ethical treatment of people who build our products. That’s a core value of our company.”

~ Rebecca Greenfield, “Foxconn Is Still a Hard Place to Work”, The Atlantic Wire

Workers at Foxconn morn the suicide deaths of their co-workers

due to Microsoft’s poor working conditions.

This graphic is part of the Swiss-based Public Eye campaign to elect the world’s worst corporation. Foxconn is a 2011 nominee.  ~ Greenpeace

But here are the cold hard facts, the feet of truth sticking out under the blanket of the Gates propaganda about China’s Microsoft X-Box workers:

“Last year a startling 18 Chinese migrant workers attempted suicide at Foxconn production facilities located in Guangdong, Jiangsu and Hebei Provinces. Fourteen died, while four survived with critical injuries. All were between 17 and 25 years old. Why did they, in the prime of youth, give up on their lives?

According to a woman working on the soldering line attaching speakers to MP3- and MP4-format digital audio players: ‘After work, all of us – more than 100 persons – are made to stay behind. It happens whenever workers get punished. A girl is forced to stand at attention to read aloud a statement of self-criticism. She must be loud enough to be heard. Our line leader would ask if the worker at the far end of the workshop could hear clearly the mistake she has made. Oftentimes girls feel like they are losing face. It’s very embarrassing. Her tears drop. Her voice becomes very small.’” ~ Jenny Chan, iSlave New Internationalist Magazine

‘I am just a speck of dust’…

Does that statement give you the same message as the Gates Foundation regarding the equal value [see below, straight from the Gates Foundation website] of every human life?  I think not!

Death at Foxconn: Ma Zishan mourns his son Ma Xiangqian, the tenth protest suicide against draconian management at the south China electronics firm. The suicides continue. Joe Tan / Reuters

“As American consumers ogle over shiny new gadgets at this week’s Consumer Electronic’s Show, the workers that make those products are threatening mass suicide for the horrid working conditions at Foxconn. 300 employees who worked making the Xbox 360 stood at the edge of the factory building, about to jump, after their boss reneged on promised compensation, reports English news site Want China Times. It’s not like this is the first time working conditions at Foxconn have made news outside China. But iPhone and Xbox sales surely haven’t lagged in the wake of those revelations and neither Apple nor Microsoft has done much of anything to fix things. 

Instead of the raise they requested, these workers were given the following ultimatum: quit with compensation, or keep their jobs with no pay increase. Most quit and never got the money. That’s when the mass suicide threat came in. The incident actually caused a factory wide shutdown, reports Record China. 

Sympathetic corporate statements aside, the conditions haven’t much improved. Beyond this threat — the mayor eventually talked the angry workers down — suicides persist. Apple has given similar responses, saying it ensures safe working conditions and fair employee treatment. 

That translates to making employees sign “no suicide” pacts and letting 13 year-olds work half-day long shifts, as Mike Daisey, a self-proclaimed Apple fanboy, detail in this week’s This American Life. Daisey goes to Shenzhen, China, where Foxconn employs over 400,000 workers. He talks to both factory workers and businessmen, gathering chilling information about the situation at the factory, discovering suicide nets, 36-hour shifts, 27-year-old burn outs with dismembered limbs and underage workers.”

~ Rebecca Greenfield, “Foxconn Is Still a Hard Place to Work”, The Atlantic Wire

As I write this blog, I am chilled by the last statement by Daisey and the confirmed suicides of 16 Foxconn workers.  These deaths are due to the horrible working conditions minimized by Melinda and Bill Gates, who fool Americans about their caring philanthropy by more propaganda via media spin.

“Over the last two years, at least 16 Foxconn employees have committed suicide in the company’s Shenzhen, China factory. Three other workers attempted to kill themselves at the factory. Those deaths have prompted the company to say that it will install “suicide nets” around the factory to discourage employees from jumping from buildings. Foxconn has also offered some workers a 20 percent wage increase to improve morale.” ~ Don Reisinger, “Foxconn Settles With Workers Who Threaten Mass Suicide”, C-Net

But how could Melinda and Bill Gates possibly be responsible for the suicide death of a public school teacher due to working conditions? After all, the Gates don’t “own” and “operate” public schools!  Or do they?

Let’s look at the story about Mary Thorson and the Cottage Grove Upper Grade Center in Chicago, IL., starting with the propaganda by the Gates’ own views on how their influence impacts public education.

Gates  and Gates Foundation Propaganda:

“In most workplaces, there is an implicit bargain: Employees get the support they need to excel at their jobs, and employers build a system to evaluate their performance. The evaluations yield information that employees use to improve—and that employers use to hold employees accountable for results.

At Microsoft, we believed in giving our employees the best chance to succeed, and then we insisted on success. We measured excellence, rewarded those who achieved it and were candid with those who did not. Teachers don’t work in anything like this kind of environment, and they want a new bargain.

We know this because they told us so in a recent survey that our foundation undertook with Scholastic. It turns out that teachers don’t like their no-support/low-expectations working conditions any better than we do.”Grading the Teachers” ~  Schools have a lot to learn from buisness say Melinda and Bill Gates.

How does this statement straight from the Gates Foundation settle with you

after reading a statement from a Chinese worker about being a mere speck of dust?

Truth:

One might say that ALL lives have equal value to Melinda and Bill Gates – EXCEPT for anyone not wealthy enough to be in upper management, not wealthy enough to go to private charter schools promoted by Melinda and Bill Gates,or not wealthy enough to run in their social circles.  Some of these “LESS EQUAL” lives might be public school teachers, children and families who are poor, or those who work at Foxconn.  But do I have proof or evidence of that opinion?  I think the lives and words of Mary and the Chinese workers are evidence enough, but is there other evidence?

How do the Gates manage their employees here in Washington State at Microsoft, for example?  There is evidence that Melinda and Bill Gates treat their Microsoft employees in the exact same manner as they are treating US public school children, parents, and teachers – with a few ‘carrots’ and mostly ‘sticks’!

In fact, these ‘sticks’ of cold feet – the truth sticking out from their DeForming measures – are KILLING what they SAY the Gates say they are striving for in education reform –  that big word Melinda and Bill Gates throw around as Corporate EdDeFormers all the time – INNOVATION.  Another one of their trick words is “transformation”.  And another buzz word that they use to make working conditions for students, teachers, and factory workers is “accountability”.

This method of merit-pay-carrots and punitive-decentives kill collaboration, creating a competitive market driven, glory hogging, dog-eat-dog environment where bullies thrive, collaborators despair, and INNOVATION wilts away.  The onl”transformation” that takes place is the increasing stress under bullying that leads to despair.

These methods have also seen a rise in working condition suicides as reported by the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, via Timesizing, Not Downsizing in their article entitled “Work Related Suicide, Death, and Violence”.

See how this same model Gates uses to destroy working conditions impacts employees and INNOVATION at Microsoft. as reported by Joe Wilcox on Beta News in his article, “Why Former Employees Say Microsoft Can’t Innovate”

One of the reasons – Gates doesn’t seem to even understand the concept and meaning of the word… “Innovation”… to him it means “status quo” per his employee, Rodriquez. Yet Gates makes many comments against teachers and teachers’ unions demonizing them for “protecting the status quo!”

Incentives that Discourage Risk, Innovation

“Related to gut-bulging middle management: some HR review and compensation processes discourage many employees from taking the kinds of risks necessary for Microsoft to regain its competitive edge and, quite frankly, to innovate in truly meaningful ways. Microsoft’s definition of innovation, for most of its product groups, is anything that preserves the status quo — meaning extending Office and Windows and increasingly server software like SharePoint and Windows Server. Risk is a dirty word for many employees looking to advance at Microsoft.

A former employee whom I’ll call Rodriguez said of the HR review process: “Microsoft has become too ‘scorecard’ heavy and highly litigated to the point it kills an employee’s spirit of free thinking and creativity, since everything a person does is closely judged by management.” Among the former Microsofties I communicated with over the last couple of months, Rodriguez was the harshest critic of Microsoft’s review process, which he observed is going on right now; fiscal year ends on June 30 and reviews occur midway.

Several former and existing employees tried to explain Microsoft’s seemingly complicated review and compensation process. People are hired at a certain level and can advance up levels, which have corresponding salary ranges. During reviews process, employees are graded with such designations as ‘exceed,’ ‘achieved’ and ‘underperformed’ commitment ratings. These are based on numerous criteria, which include management assessment of performance and achieving goals set during the previous review process. Other criteria include “contribution rankings.” Problem: These criteria sometimes work cross-purposes to performance. Fred explained:

Processes became more bureaucratic and individuals were less empowered to take action.  In fact, oftentimes the incentive structure encouraged individual contributors not to do the right thing, but just to do what they committed to in their review the year prior. In other words, if you committed to include Feature A in Windows, and halfway through the year you realized that was a bad thing for Windows and Microsoft customers, the incentive structure actively discouraged you from trying to kill the feature, because then you wouldn’t have achieved your commitments.

Barry also made similar complaints about the “decentives” to doing a good job. “The metrics are too complex,” he said. “We were evaluated also on a client’s satisfaction with our work.” The client could range from a reporter for Microsofties working in PR to developers for employees doing product development or for anyone to other groups within Microsoft.

Several current and former employees wanting to do better or escape from stifling management situations would request transfers. However, many managers wanted to keep their staff in part “because it would reflect badly on them,” Barry said.

“I was put in ‘performance detention’ due to wanting to expand to another part of the company and ended up in the ‘crapper’ list,” said another former employee, whom I’ll call Mickey”. ~ Joe Wilcox, Beta News, “Why Former Employees Say Microsoft Can’t Innovate”

I and many others have already blogged and written about the Gates’ control over public education reform.  The policies of our US Department of Education are controlled almost entirely by Melinda and Bill Gates.  In fact, Fareed Zakaria on CNN’s “Fixing Education” recently introduced Gates as being “more powerful” than Secretary Arne Duncan of the Department of Education.

Philanthropy vs. Billanthropy:

First and foremost, the Gates Foundation promote themselves as philanthropists.  By the Webster definition, I would highly disagree and redefine  the correct term that describes Melinda and Bill Gates as “Billanthropists”, a term coined on a title of the Economist below.

Webster’s Dictionary definition of Philanthropy: “1: goodwill to fellow members of the human race; especially: active effort to promote human welfare; 2: a: an act or gift done or made for humanitarian purposes b: an organization distributing or supported by funds set aside for humanitarian purposes.”

 A friend and I collaborated to write/edit a definition of Billanthropy:  1. Feigning goodwill, generosity and altruism in an effort to consolidate power and control; using propaganda and financial ‘incentives’ (grants, scholarships, gifts) to trick society into accepting changes in legislation and policies that promote the selfish interests and agendas of the elite billanthropists; influencing and controlling policy and legislative initiatives and attaching mechanisms to ensure profit and power for the elite. b. an organization that pretends an interest in the public good and uses indoctrination and brainwashing to encourage others to donate money.  The funds are then used to promote their own agendas, to make profits and create tax havens.   This process also creates a closed loop, whereby the elites maintain power and control over all institutions within the social-political-economic structure, locally and globally.  [see 1, term used to describe the behavior of Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation as well as many other US Billanthropists.]

Clearly, by the record of recent events, the Gates have invested in A.L.E.C. to control Ed Reform , controlling legislation. This has led to changes in laws surrounding philanthropy, allowing them to both control legislation, government, and education policy while profiting from the many arenas they claim to be ‘giving’ to, while in the meantime they also provide themselves with a fat-cat tax haven.

One of the main ways the Gates can no longer correctly use the term “philanthropy ” is because of recent legislation called PRI’s or Program Related Investments. PRI’s  [A PRI, broadly defined, is a foundation investment to support a charitable project or activity involving the potential return of capital within an established time frame., see NHI in link for more.] By legislating PRI’s for profit, the Gates have all but eliminated their claim to fame when it comes to being philanthropists and now fall into what urban dictionary may define as Billanthropy.

But what do the Gates have to do with the working conditions of public school teachers, you ask?  It all boils down to controlling the US Government and if you don’t believe me, follow the money.

How are the Gates involved in poor working conditions for teachers in public schools, you might ask?

It all started when Gates started the path to kill public schools by first demonizing and deprofessionalizing the teachers.

Here, Diane Ravitch schooled Bill Gates and talks about his demonization of public school teachers  in a response printed in the Washington Post by Valerie Strauss.

Gates:Is she [Ravitch] sticking up for decline?”

Ravitch: “Of course not! If we follow Bill Gates’ demand to judge teachers by test scores, we will see stagnation, and he will blame it on teachers. We will see stagnation because a relentless focus on test scores in reading and math will inevitably narrow the curriculum only to what is tested. This is not good education. “Last week, he said in a speech that teachers should not be paid more for experience and graduate degrees. I wonder why a man of his vast wealth spends so much time trying to figure out how to cut teachers’ pay. Does he truly believe that our nation’s schools will get better if we have teachers with less education and less experience? Who does he listen to? He needs to get himself a smarter set of advisers. “Of course, we need to make teaching a profession that attracts and retains wonderful teachers, but the current anti-teacher rhetoric emanating from him and his confreres demonizes and demoralizes even the best teachers. I have gotten letters from many teachers who tell me that they have had it, they have never felt such disrespect; and I have also met young people who tell me that the current poisonous atmosphere has persuaded them not to become teachers. Why doesn’t he make speeches thanking the people who work so hard day after day, educating our nation’s children, often in difficult working conditions, most of whom earn less than he pays his secretaries at Microsoft?”Diane Ravitch, Ravitch Answers Gates by Valerie Strauss, Washington Post

 

The crime is not Mary Thorson’s own suicide, but that of the Gates’ and all those complicit in intimidating her, and the entire public school system.  Mary is not alone in this feeling of intimidation and this will not be the last suicide caused by Melinda and Bill Gates.

But what about the working conditions for Mary Thorson? 

How could Melinda and Bill Gates possibly have influenced her choice to commit suicide? 

The real cause lies in taking away so much control over people through bullying.  This stripping of power instills fear and loss of self-respect.  Students, teachers, families, and all working class people need a sense of liberty — a sense of control over their own lives.  Just like Neil Perry in The Dead Poets Society, Bill and Melinda Gates take over our lives, telling us exactly how we must teach, how and when we have to test, and the high stakes attached blame us for ‘failures’, humiliating all of us publicly.

These draconian teaching methods were not settling well with Mary Thorson as she watched her students in high poverty respond.  These draconian teaching methods aren’t settling well with many teachers.  Draconian teaching conditions lead to horrible working conditions.  Horrible working conditions lead to horrible learning conditions for our neediest students, especially and Mary Thorson just couldn’t keep forcing these on her students.

In Mary and the people in China’s Foxconn factory, we see the results of such oppression.

Instead of helping Cottage Grove address the issues of poverty, the Chicago school system, highly influenced by Bill and Melinda Gates education policies, intimidated its teachers.  Through the nation’s policies of No Child Left Behind –  Cottage Grove was forced to become a SIG turnaround school [2010], labeling it forever as a failure and holding it up for public humiliation rather than helping it.  School Improvement Grants [SIG] are only offered to schools AFTER they are designated as “failures”.  Why can’t we give schools and children what they need WHEN they need it?  Before they fail?  Why don’t we honor true innovation and creativity like they do with such success in Finland?

The sticks of public humiliation used by Gates to brutalize Mary Thorson who gave so much to her students in poverty proved to be too much for her.

How many more teachers, students, workers do we have to lose before we stop the Gates from this bullying behavior?

Without the pressure of lobbying and earmark dollars, without the controls placed on both the Bush and Obama administrations by Melinda and Bill Gates — it is quite likely that the education reform policies would die away in their own suicidal death spiral.

But with the Gates funding used as the ultimate carrot and stick, they are truly driving the despair that Mary and millions of other teachers across America are feeling.   Students are suffering much of this despair as well. Most of this despair is due to bullying, starting at the top of our corporations, through government, down through districts, and into our schools.  Mental health experts can tell you about these direct cause and effect correlations.

Here in her article entitled, “Illinois teacher Commits Suicide Citing Working Conditions”  by Kristina Betinis, we find the very similar story line to the workers from Microsoft’s Foxconn in China – a story of being pushed and bullied by Melinda and Bill Gates to the point where life itself is not worth living – where the person feels their own life is NOT valued by the Gates at all, by their unions, districts, or schools –  much less equally.

This kind of Gates pressure -cooker of bullying teachers is taking over the country, as was written about here:

“At a December district school board meeting, it became clear Thorson was not alone in feeling threatened by the school administration. Teachers admitted that they are intimidated by school officials, afraid for their jobs and dare not speak openly about the conditions they face. More than one teacher spoke about being harassed for taking sick days. Another teacher noted the irony of having an anti-bullying campaign in the school while the teachers are being bullied.

At the meeting, school administrators pushed back, blaming teachers for not speaking up or citing specifics. School board President Joe Sherman said, “If you guys would have come and brought allegations and we didn’t address it, then you would have every right to say what you need to say.”

Intimidation is a tactic in a nationwide strategy to de-professionalize teaching, as a precondition for the dismantling of public education and the selling off or leasing of its related assets. The so-called educational reforms, begun under the Bush administration and expanded by President Obama, have largely been couched in the highly confrontational language of “accountability,” which implies that teachers are overpaid and undeserving of professional status. This has accompanied a frontal assault on the workplace gains teachers struggled to win throughout the 20th century.

The state of Illinois has led the implementation of these “reforms”, subjecting schools to extremely aggressive measures, including mass firings which force teachers and staff to re-apply for their jobs, buyouts, capricious and punitive academic testing measures, and regular school closures and consolidations, which force students to make their way to schools in other areas. These policies have inflamed the crisis in public schools and the communities they serve, contributing to higher drop-out rates, violence, overcrowding, and burn-out among teachers.

School boards routinely provide cash incentives to administrators to implement these changes on a school-by-school basis, extracting concessions from teachers in violation of their teaching contracts. Ratings and disciplinary measures are regularly used to meet pre-determined numbers of layoffs which administrators are required to carry out over a school year. Outspoken teachers identified by administrators as “troublesome,” and the better-compensated veteran teachers are typically targeted.

In the Chicago Public Schools system, recent “reforms” have included longer school days, where teachers and other staff are not compensated for an additional seven hours per week, and many have reported being threatened and intimidated by school administrators into voting in favor of the extended hours.

As these reactionary policies devastate schools, students and teachers, the state and local budget crises have intensified the negative impact of lower wages and fewer school resources.

It is deeply tragic that the miserable conditions in public schools could result in the suicide of a dedicated young teacher, but once the ruthless policies of the ruling class are seen in full light, such tragedies are all but inevitable. Last October, a longtime Los Angeles-area teacher took his own life after being labeled a “less effective teacher” by the Los Angeles Times. (See “Teacher ranked ‘less effective’ by the Los Angeles Times takes his own life”)

Mary Thorson’s parents have made a special effort to communicate their daughter’s intentions. Her mother said that the young teacher’s suicide was directly related to the pressures at Cottage Grove Upper Grade Center, emphasizing that Mary had no prior mental health issues and was never in a combat situation in the Army Reserve. Thorson’s father said, “Is the school responsible? Yes, the school is responsible.”

Is the school responsible?  Yes, the school is responsible. 

But by their actions – Melinda and Bill Gates have made themselves ‘the school’.  And they are responsible.   For by placing themselves into this position of power over our public schools – by their propaganda winning over the indoctrinated minds of the public to demonize and intimidate our nation’s children, parents, teachers, and schools until they have become even more powerful than our own Department of Education – now, Melinda and Bill Gates ARE the school and yes, they are responsible.

I grieve for the Thorson family, for Mary’s students and coworkers, and for all the family members/coworkers in China who cared deeply about the 16 workers who committed suicide there.  I know a nation of teachers grieves for the Thorson’s and as a nation of 99% working class people, America grieves with China as well.  Once we get past the most painful part of this grief, I believe something will shift.

Like in The Dead Poets Society, there is a tale of redemption. 

I believe that when enough people begin to feel their cold numbed feet of truth wake up, that indeed these lives in China and Illinois will serve a much higher purpose.

What happens under the pressure placed on us?  Do we conform to Bill and Melinda Gates’ standards?  Or do we walk to the beat of our own drummer with courage?

“I stand up here because I remind myself that I must always look at the world in a different way.”

~  John Keating, The Dead Poets Society

We as a nation need to follow the example of the teacher and students in The Dead Poets Society –  we need to stand up on our desks and dare to be our highest selves, dare to look at the world of working class people differently, dare to look at teaching and learning differently, dare to look at children of poverty differently, dare to defy the Gates dynasty and dare to defy the remainder of the Corporate EdDeFormers.  The time is now, before there are any more tragic deaths like Mary Thorson’s!

John Keating: “Boys, you must strive to find your own voice. Because the longer you wait to begin, the less likely you are to find it at all. Thoreau said, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation.” Don’t be resigned to that. Break out!” ~ The Dead Poets Society, IMDb quotes

Carpe’ Diem, my friends!  Seize the day and reclaim our public schools back from these tyrants! 

Neil Perry’s father, wants to control his life, his destiny,  his future – like Gates wants to control ours.  These aspects of our lives do not belong to Gates or any other man or woman just because they are wealthy.  We must not give this up to anyone.  This much I know, our lives and our schools are worth taking back from the bullies.  Like the narrowed curriculum and bubble tests of the Gates edreform, the bullying and controlling — they leave out the poetry, the marrow of our own lives.

John Keating: “We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for. To quote from Whitman, “O me! O life!… of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless… of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?” Answer.

That you are here –

that life exists, and identity;

that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse.

That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse.

What will your verse be?”


BilLinda DeVil ~ All Innocent Children Better Beware – If She Doesn’t Scare You No Evil Thing Will

“Gates talks about her wealth almost as though it is a cross she must bear.

~ April Dembosky, [2011] “People Person”, Financial Times

Your enormous wealth is a cross to bear?  Like you are the nation’s martyress? Really Melinda? 

Such a narcissistic, disgusting, whining thing to even allude to –

which brought to mind this blog post…

and Cruella De Vil.


Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesn’t scare you
No evil thing will
To see her is to
Take a sudden chill
Cruella, Cruella De Vil

The curl of her lips
The ice in her stare
All innocent children
Had better beware
She’s like a spider waiting
For the kill
Look out for Cruella De Vil

Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesn’t scare you
No evil thing will
to see her is to
take a sudden chill
Cruella, Cruella De Vil

This vampire bat
This inhuman beast
She ought to be locked up
And never released
The world was such
A wholesome place until
Cruella, Cruella De Vil

Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesnt scare you
No evil thing will
to see her is to
take a sudden chill
Cruella,Cruella De Vil

At first you think
Cruella is the devil
But after time has worn
Away the shock
You come to realize
You’ve seen her kind of eyes
Watching you from underneath
a rock!

Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesn’t scare you
No evil thing will
to see her is to
take a sudden chill
Cruella,Cruella De Vil

Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil
If she doesn’t scare you
No evil thing will
to see her is to
take a sudden chill
Cruella,Cruella De Vil

Look out Cruella De Vil ~ Disney

I became curious about the other half of the Gates Foundation as I thought about their foundations title:

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

As I look at CRUELla De Vil’s costume above, I am reminded of Yin and Yang in the colors of black and white, representing good and evil.  I think about how many people are persuaded to believe that the Gates Foundation is purely good, that the couple are truly philanthropists to the core, always giving to the poor.  Nothing could be further from the truth when you investigate their dark side.

When one looks from afar and begins connecting all the spots on this Dalmatian of a foundation, you can begin to see the evil side, where their black is beginning to dominate the lily white.

What is Melinda’s role in the Gates Foundation? Read further to explore the starring role she has taken on through a character we are very familiar with —  CRUELla De Vil.

Melinda Gates went public in 2008 and three years ago, I must admit, I wasn’t really following her.  I, like many other education advocates was focused on the damage contrails that we all thought were left by Bill Gates  at that time.   I railed against Bill’s education policies;  blaming him for the swath of destruction and I wasn’t really focusing on Melinda.

As the 6th Most Powerful Woman in the World according to Forbes in 2010, actually MORE POWERFUL than First Lady Michelle Obama who is 8th, Melinda Gates is a force to be reckoned with.

I think that was a major oversight on my part and I think we all need to look carefully to research just what Melinda is up to in the world of education policy.

On January 7th, 2008; Melinda Gates went public in an interview and article that appeared in Fortune Magazine, CNN’s Money under the heading “Philanthropy” titled “Melinda Gates Goes Public … about living with Bill, working with Warren Buffet, and giving away their billions” written by Patricia Sellers.

Melinda French, at 22 with an MBA was working at Microsoft and describes the young company as “acerbic”.

“Arriving in Seattle in 1987 as a marketing manager for a predecessor of Word, Melinda, 22, was naive about what Microsoft held for her. “There were a lot of idiosyncratic people. They were all so smart, and they were changing the world,” she says, unfazed that she was the youngest recruit and the only woman among ten MBAs. The culture, though, did faze her. “It was a very acerbic company,” she recalls. That culture trickled down from the top, where Gates and Ballmer badgered and harangued managers. Melinda thought about leaving Microsoft…
Melinda worried about marrying Bill. “Bill had money,” she says. “To me, it was like, Okay, Bill has money. Big deal.” She saw what success was doing to him – robbing him of his privacy and a normal life. Both Melinda and Bill, in fact, questioned whether his conquer-the-world capitalist nature could co-exist with a family.”
“Both Melinda and Bill, in fact, questioned whether his conquer-the-world capitalist nature could co-exist with a family.

Unfortunately, she chose to marry that acerbic-trickle-down-badgering-and-haranging-meglomanic and became BilLinda De Vil instead where she tries to control children as if they were her creatures — pets if you will — giving money only with strings attached like leashes.

I would venture to say some of the ‘acerbic’ nature of Microsoft has rubbed off on Melinda, unfortunately and is now trickling down to their hold on public education and the innocent youth of America’s public schools , where children are chained to their narrowed curriculum and high-stakes over-testing and their guinea-pig-like experiments.

“All innocent children should be aware – if she doesn’t scare you; no evil thing will!

~ Cruella De Vil, 101 Dalmations ~ by Selena Gomez and Disney

And now, that acerbic view of the world is being passed down to future generations of this 1% power couple.

Here you can see where indoctrination of the 3 children born into the Gates Dynasty will get their world view in the Gates household as Seller’s article discusses in a section describing the couples response to questions from their own children.  This is how the indoctrination of the rich 1% spreads through generations.  The Gates children were evidently curious about what exactly their parents do so they showed them a video about kids with polio.  When one of the Gates children asks “Did you know that boy?”  here is the response:

“A few years ago when they showed a documentary about polio, the kids asked about a crippled boy featured in the film: “Did you help that kid? Do you know the name of that kid? Well, why not?” On and on. “We don’t know that boy,” Melinda told the children, “but we’re trying to help lots of kids like him.” Bill’s explanation: “I’m in wholesale. I’m not in retail!” ~ Patricia Sellers [2008] Fortune Magazine

“I’m in wholesale. I’m not in retail!” ~ Bill Gates

This is the real world view this couple has about all the children’s lives they touch – they’re simply products they can control through wholesale marketing of their grandiose ideas! 

The problem with these risks is they do not investigate with the experts in the fields they control and the impact reaches millions of people!

Yet Sellers presents an almost pathetic persona of Melinda Gates, a caricature that we should all pity in her story, with quotes and sidelines designed to manipulate the reader into feeling pity for Melinda.

For example, how does a woman who owns the Gates mansion refer to her house as a

“metaphor for her desire for normalcy”

unless they are so out of touch with the reality of millions of children living homeless and in poverty?

“The house is, of course, a metaphor for Melinda’s desire for normalcy.” ~  Patricia Sellers

Somehow in light of today’s economic depression, 1.3 million HOMELESS children, 1 in 2 families living near or in the poverty line, these words become shockingly disgusting.  They demonstrate how out of touch with reality Melinda Gates really is when looking at the lives of those she claims to be serving through her philanthropy.  Guess what Melinda – children can’t eat tests!  Children can’t perform well on tests when they are food insecure and/or shelter insecure!

Melinda, you need to get schooled on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, I tell you!  You and your Gates Foundation have inverted this hierarchy and that is why your methods/policies are failing! You and Bill expect students to achieve/perform well, then go to college, and THEN make a living that allows them to meet their physiological, safety, and security needs.  Duh!

It’s the poverty STUPID!

But somehow we’re all supposed to be worrying about poor Melinda, are we?

“Along the way, Melinda has sacrificed privacy, security, simplicity, and normalcy. In the late 1990s, during the Microsoft antitrust trial, her husband was widely regarded as the biggest bully in business. And isn’t anyone married to Bill Gates susceptible to losing her identity – to being perceived as the ultimate accessory?” ~  Sellers

Now doesn’t this just make you feel sorry for Melinda and all she has had to sacrifice?  But wait, there’s more….it’s almost as though she actually has to WORK for a living:

“Forgive her if she overcompensates. One day this past fall she spent many hours at her children’s school…and then hosted a dozen dinner guests, including four African health ministers who were in Seattle for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Malaria Forum. By 10 P.M., after everyone had left, she was feeling frazzled and panicky about her speech the next morning. “Just go to bed!” Bill told her.

And another ploy at sympathy for the couple comes from another interview with Komo News, Kathi Goertzen in 2004 — such a terribly overwhelming life they have traveling all over the world juggling a schedule.  Tsk! Tsk!

“Melinda and Bill log tens of thousands of miles each year around the world supporting their foundation’s work. Tackling health and social issues like education and homelessness demands a huge commitment of time and energy, and the schedule juggling can be overwhelming.

I’m sure Melinda did all the cooking and cleaning herself, just like the rest of us peasants after working all day!  Oh, but it only gets better for her.  I think one of the main reasons that those of us educators who are putting the responsibility for the education policy changes on Bill rather than Melinda, is because he’s always been the mouthpiece for these changes.  This article explains that for us too!

“Melinda dreads the spotlight….

But in the past year, Melinda Gates is taking on the role of spokesperson far more frequently.

“The past year also marks something of a coming out for Melinda Gates, as she takes to the media to promote the foundation’s maternal and child health programme. Until recently, she has acted more behind the scenes, letting her husband be the primary spokesperson, spar with journalists and answer critics...

But as she has become more expert on the issues the foundation is embracing, Gates has come to understand her own influence and the role she can play as an advocate. To build more support for their causes, Gates has accepted more media interviews, though with some reservations. “ ~ April Dembosky, [2011] “People Person”, Financial Times

How is this relationship between the Gates couple tied to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation work?  According to this article, Melinda is the driving force behind the philanthropy work.

Let us NOT FORGET that Melinda has her masters degree in business folks!

Seller’s article made me rethink my ideas about

who is really wearing the pants in the Gates family and thus question…

Who is really in charge of public education?  Could it be Melinda Gates?

And Melinda is the cause of the work branching out to education, etc.  Bill would most likely still be working at Microsoft if it weren’t for Melinda.  In fact, Bill Gates says he wouldn’t do much of the philanthropy work at all if it weren’t for Melinda.  So there you go!

“Friends of the couple say that he wouldn’t be shifting gears if it weren’t for Melinda. Moreover, they say, she has helped Bill become more open, patient, and compassionate. “Bullshit!” he bellows. Nicer, perhaps? “No way!” he shouts, grinning because he knows it’s true. One thing he admits readily: Thanks to Melinda, he is easing comfortably into his new role. About the philanthropic work he says, “I don’t think it would be fun to do on my own, and I don’t think I’d do as much of it.”

And in an interview with Seattle Komo News,  Bill Gates said

“You know, I wouldn’t be doing the foundation if it wasn’t for her,” he said. “And she’s really shaped where we’re going with it.” Kathi Goertzen [2004],“One-on-One with Melinda Gates

Who wears the pants in the Gates’ marriage and what’s up with this three-some?

And what is this strange “threesome” they have going on with Warren Buffet?

“Buffett also believes that Melinda makes Bill a better decision-maker. “He’s smart as hell, obviously,” Buffett says. “But in terms of seeing the whole picture, she’s smarter.” Would Buffett have given the Gates Foundation his fortune if Melinda were not in the picture? “That’s a great question,” he replies. “And the answer is, I’m not sure.”

It seems Buffet is very involved in their relationship, even in the purchase of the Melinda’s grotesquely expensive wedding ring as noted in Seller’s interview.  Do the math on this one! OMG! Still feeling sorry for poor Melinda folks?

“As Buffett drove them to Borsheim’s, a jewelry emporium owned by Berkshire Hathaway, he kept ribbing: “Bill, there’s a metric of love here. I spent 6% of my net worth on Susie’s ring. I don’t know how much you love Melinda, but 6% is the yardstick in Omaha.” Bill, worth $7.3 billion by this time, inquired about sales per square foot while Melinda checked out the goods. “I said an emerald. Bill said a diamond is more appropriate,” she recalls. She chose a diamond scandalously shy of Buffett’s price target.”

So who exactly wears the pants in the Gates marriage?

“This is not exactly a marriage of equals. Melinda is better educated than Bill, having graduated from Duke University with a BA (a double major in computer science and economics) and an MBA. Harvard’s most celebrated dropout…

…Melinda also outperforms him athletically. She runs once a week with a few friends – seven miles in an hour, a brisk pace – and tries to exercise five days a week. She has completed the Seattle marathon and climbed, with ropes and crampons, to the peak of 14,410-foot Mount Rainier.

…Melinda also understands people better than he does, Bill admits.

…(“Bill’s very good at complicated jigsaw puzzles, but she’s unbelievable,” Buffett says.)

“Melinda is more scientific and reads more than 99% of the people you’ll ever meet,” he says.” [Bill Gates]

So, in fact it sounds like Melinda outpaces Bill Gates in ALL major areas, making this article sounds like it is rendering him as sort of useless except for the Microsoft $$, doesn’t it?  I hear he’s good at tennis.  Oh, well…

Did Melinda choose the areas the Gates Foundation targets after all?

The Gates Foundation could have taken a much less lethal approach to helping public education.  At one point in time they were involved in supporting libraries.  But …

“Initially, Melinda recalls, the idea was to put laptops in classrooms – which was derided by many as a self-serving gesture by a software tycoon.”  ~  Sellers

But just how did Melinda influence Bill Gates to really make his mark in public education?  Gates’ arch nemesis in his Microsoft Anti-Trust case and the attorney prosecuting him, Joel Klein in NYC  ended up being partners to take down public education.

How could this happen?  One would never imagine them working together to take down public education!  But imagine the arguments made by Melinda Gates who soon convinced her husband to put aside this battle to take apart public education!

“The Gateses’ partner here happens to be Joel Klein, who led the government’s antitrust case against Microsoft a decade ago and now runs New York City’s public schools. Klein appreciates the irony of their alliance, calling the progress “a tribute to Bill.” For his part, Bill claims that it was no big deal to give his money to his former nemesis. And Melinda won’t say a word about the tension that stemmed from that period. “That’s part of our relationship that I need to keep private,” she says. But clearly she helped her husband get his head around the notion of working with Klein.” ~ Sellers

  1. SURPRISE!  I have a new target for you to practice on!  You’re going to partner with your arch nemesis Joel Klein so we can take down public education by privatizing it and investing in every aspect of education for profit! ~

  2. Glenn Close as Cruella De Vil, 102 Dalmatians (2000). [Theatrical Trailer]

And once BilLinda De Vil [aka Melinda Gates] enlisted the “education advocacy groups”; bribed by Gates’ foundation money, the world turns quickly to do their bidding.  Seriously, does Melinda really manage the education policy?  Her influence is one of control to create children all of the world in her mirror image, her ascerbic style of control mixed with Bill’s input is designed to create millions of little standardized De Vil-Bot-Widgets.

Cruella De Vil: “All right. Keep the little beasts. Do what you like with them. Drown them, for all I care. You’re a fool, Anita! I have no use for fools. You’re fired, you’re finished, you’ll never work in fashion again! I’m through with all of you! I’ll get even! Just wait. You’ll be sorry, you fools, YOU IDIOTS!” ~  101 Dalmations, [1996] IMDb

“When it comes to investing their philanthropic assets,

Melinda wields even greater influence.

…Early on she and Bill agreed to focus on a few areas of giving, choosing where to place their money by asking two questions: Which problems affect the most people? And which have been neglected in the past?

“We literally go down the chart of the greatest inequities and give where we can effect the greatest change,” Melinda says.”

As I read this statement, I think about how public education was once the “great equalizer” and I worry about the narrowed curriculum mandated by the Gates’ education policies, the over-emphasis on high-stakes testing that then leads to a lack of time to provide broad more important curriculum choices – like a study of history, civil rights, voting, and democracy in our schools.  I worry about the past 20 years of charter school implementation and the exponential growth in privatization at their hand and wonder about the loss of civil rights as a result of the world through Melinda Gates’ eyes unfolding before us.

Cruella De Vil: [scary whisper] “Oh, yes! I love the smell of near-extinction!”

~ 101 Dalmations, [1996] IMDb

Melinda’s ego on the world stage is growing bigger than any one of us should be comfortable with to be sure.  As she questions herself, she keeps marching forward, broadening the scope of control over areas that impact real lives of real people she admits she does not even know.  She is more than dabbling in areas well beyond her knowledge and skill levels and on some personal level her conscience is telling her that, but she is not listening to that inner voice, nor to experts in each of these fields as she moves deeper into this narcissistic delusion she has created in her role as BilLinda De Vil.

Frederick: I thought we liked stripes this year.
Cruella De Vil: What kind of sycophant are you?
Frederick: Uh… what kind of sycophant would you like me to be?

sycophant– a person who tries to please someone in order to gain a personal advantage

apple polisher, bootlicker, fawner, groveler, groveller, truckler – someone who humbles himself as a sign of respect; who behaves as if he had no self-respect
adulator, flatterer – a person who uses flattery
goody-goody – a person who behaves extremely well in order to please a superior

And each step Melinda Gates takes forward moves us closer to extinction of the world as we know it.

“But if you’d asked me yesterday if I would like a much simpler life, I would have told you yes.” Yesterday was that night before the Malaria Forum, when she went to bed feeling unprepared. This morning, as she sat onstage and scrutinized the audience of renowned doctors and health experts, she says, “I was telling myself, ‘I know that person … I know his work … I know her work.'” She was giving herself a pep talk. “I told myself, ‘But I do know enough.'” She completed her goal for the day: calling for the eradication of one of the worst diseases the world has ever known….“Tomorrow, another goal. Maybe it will be even bigger. [Melinda Gates] ~ Sellers

What a tangled web of deception they weave.



Hades vs Public Education – The Clash of the Titans

In a recent Op-Ed by Dave Johnson for Alter-Net and reprinted by Truthout entitled Privatization Nightmare: 5 Public Services That Should Never Be Handed Over to Greedy Corporations”, Johnson makes a serious point.

“Privatization is the 1% taking public wealth so they can make money off of it for themselves. Instead of democracy collecting taxes from the 1% privatization leaves everyone poorer and paying rent to the 1%.

Private Not Public Interest

There is a fundamental conflict of interest between public and private. When things are privatized of course profit comes first, not public interest. Public functions are supposed to serve the public, us, We, the People. The ‘private’ in ‘privatization’ means that it is done for the private gain of a few. When a public function is privatized it means that instead of operating for the benefit of We, the People – the 99% – it is operated for the benefit of a few – the 1%.”

The author misses the mark however, as he doesn’t even mention the biggest battle of all being waged between the 1% and the public sector; a public sector area belonging to, and serving more people of America than any other public sector – the battle between 52 million school children, their families, their 3.2 million teachers, administrators, school board members – and  Bill Gates.   Yes, there are other corporate reforming demons joining in the  privatizing frenzy, but this story – the Bill Gates story – is one that is a true story made for Greek Mythology.

Some might say this is pure hyperbole, but I can assure you, nothing would be further from the truth.

The story of Bill Gates and his rise to power in the field of public education is pulled straight from the dramas of Greek Mythology.  Bill Gates living near the rugged Olympic Mountains in Washington State; seems to have imagined himself into the role of Hades, Ruler of the EdDeFormers Underworld, enforcing his control over people and their government to create a futuristic class that will be easy for him to maintain control over – the educationally and civics-minded dead.

This is a primal battle, for this warfare over public education is a vicious one, what with Bill Gates laying claim over what many know to be sacred  – the future of our children, the future of the public sector, the future of public schools and more importantly – the future of democracy itself.  No matter how rich Bill Gates is, these things will never belong to Bill Gates, regardless of his wealth and power — yet all of these things we hold most precious in America are at stake.  Hyperbole aside, little else is more precious and yet our country, for the most part, seems to be asleep to what we are giving away to this man!

The future of our children and the future of our democracy are at stake.

Is money and power really worth this price?

Has America truly placed money and power over all of these sacred values we hold dear?  I ask that question because it might seem so, considering how easily Bill Gates is stealing these values and most precious things from us.  I ask this because it seems odd that so few realize  just how far he has already gone to destroy public education.

But Americans are beginning to revolt towards not only Bill Gates, but the 1%.  Yet, if we are going to win the Clash of the Titans battle with Bill Gates we are going to have to use everything we’ve got against the only thing that matters to him.  His bottom line….$$$$$$$$$$.

Today, the Occupy Movement is looking at Corporatists like Bill Gates and the Wall Street Bankers as demons to our very democracy, not just in the field of public education — for their control over our society travels much deeper than the surface shows in the EdReform Wars.  But I think they are failing to recognize just how deeply Gates has dug himself into a variety of government branches at the local, state, and federal levels.  One might say, the influence of Bill Gates, the Corporatist goes all the way to the Gates of Hades and back.

The story unfolds in the shadow of the Olympics with the Greek Mythology – The Clash of the Titans…

Clash of the Titans is set in the Greek city of Argos, where a war is about to explode between man and the gods. A narration introduces the three Olympians who battled the Titans long ago: the brothers Zeus (Liam Neeson), Poseidon (Danny Huston), and Hades (Ralph Fiennes). Hades provided the means of defeating the Titans with his creation, the Kraken.  After the Titans’ defeat, Zeus created humans and ruled them while Poseidon ruled the sea, but Hades, having been deceived by Zeus, was forced to rule the Underworld. Zeus and Poseidon gain power from the prayers of humans, but Hades learns another way: fear.”   ~  Clash of the Titans synopsis [2010], IMDb – The Internet Movie Database, [emphasis added]

Internet Movie Database [IMBd] describes Hades for us – and if you know about how Gates has infiltrated public education and abused his powers as if he were both omnipotent and omniscient; the following description seems to fit the persona of Bill Gates.  Loosen your imagination just slightly to follow along…

(HAY-deez) – Son of Cronus and Rhea; ruler of the Underworld; king of the dead.

This eldest brother of Zeus was well-cast to rule the dead. He was somber, loathed change, and was given to slow black rage. He was a very jealous, very thrifty god. He sought always to enlarge his kingdom and forbade his subjects ever to leave his realm.

Only Heracles (Hercules)- whose deeds were always unique- was ever able to rescue anyone who had fallen under Hades’ rule.

Tartarus was the name of his kingdom; it lay far underneath the earth and was girded by black rivers.

It’s gates were guarded by a three-headed dog named Cerberus, trained to keep the living out and the dead in.

It was only rarely that Hades left his domain. Then he drove a golden chariot drawn by four black horses. He attended only the most important tribunals upon Olympus, but when he came he brought rich gifts- for great troves of gems and precious metals lay in his kingdom.

What he liked best was to sit on his ebony throne with his beautiful queen, Persephone, at his side, listening to the twittering petitions of the drifting dead (which he always ignored).

He valued only death. The bright bustle of life offended him. The weeping of mourners was song to Hades’ he drank tears like wine. He was so loathed and feared by mankind that no one ever referred to him by his right name, but spoke indirectly of him, using a good name to deflect his course. They called him, “Pluton,” or the “rich one.” But he was patient, the most patient of the gods. He out-waited all the strategies and, finally, always caught the one he was waiting for. ~ [2010] The Clash of the Titans” IMBd

 

Hades: “You are specks of dust beneath our fingernails. Your very breath is a gift from Olympus. You have insulted powers beyond your comprehension.”  ~ Clash of the Titans, [2010] IMDb Quotes

Once there were public schools that were great equalizers for all the humans in the land, allowing the poor to achieve their potential after others had paved the way for these schools to provide a free and public education for all — regardless of race, class, ability, religion, language, sexual orientation, etc.  These rights were hard fought for by others before them and finally, the people began to feel prosperous as a lightness appeared in their Kindgdom that they had only dreamed of before.

Imagine again, once in the darkness of what had once been light, there dwells in a Kingdom a growing army of minions who simply slipped one by one unknowingly under his influence – cast under the spell of the Corporatists, and across the country, more and more became weakened and oppressed by their growing power.  The spell was a simple one indeed, for it first showed the people what they could gain if only they worked hard enough, glorifying the wealthy owners of objects,  then they created the system of economics for profit to sell them those very things, and told them the only way to get these things was to go to schools to learn a skill to make the money to buy their products.  Now, Hades calculated what could only be the final nail in the coffin of their freedom — he created a way to profit from all aspects of that education as well while he also stole their own language to hide and propagandize his true plot against them.   The spell of power and money combined was intoxicating to almost everyone in his world, for they had been seduced by it and all it promised to bring them.

Hades: “In 10 days, when the sun is eclipsed, I will unleash the Kraken. Argos will be swept from the earth and all of you with it… Choose your penance, Argos. Destruction or sacrifice. This is the will of Zeus. ~ Clash of the Titans, [2010] IMDb Quotes

In order for Bill Gates to gain control and become the leader of the EdDeFormers Underworld he had to cast his spell by demonizing students, teachers, administrators, public schools, and the very institution of learning.  Gates released his twisted version of reality that soon became repeated by our own government, our own Secretary of Education, and our own President of the United States of America.  These entities became the three headed dog keeping the the public and real education leaders who are battling  his privatization guarding us away from control over our own public sector education policies and keeping us from being able to talk with our government leaders.

Yes, one by one the seemingly innocent became persuaded to wage his war for him, convinced by him that they were protecting the children, giving rise to a new legion of thinly veiled, yet widely accepted false “choice” – League of Education Voters, Stand for Children, Students First, Partnership for Learning, and even the Parent Teacher Association  – each grassroots organization member living in their quiet suburban homes sandwiched between the shadows of the Olympics and the Cascades – became locked up by his powers behind the Gates of Hades.  They continue to do his bidding without the knowledge of the harm they are spreading.  Gates uses many forces to keep the public engaged in his plot to destroy public education.

  • Gates uses his bankroll to sway public opinion with propaganda that demonize teachers, struggling students, whole child authentic education, education leaders’ expertise, anyone who disagrees with his privatization agenda, teacher unions, and the public schools in general.
  • Gates bankrolls several so called ‘grassroots education advocacy groups’ in a mostly radical successful attempt to buy public opinion.   By using propaganda, Gates has swayed public opinion to believe his lies through slick marketing.  He has stolen the language of education and civil rights to promote his own agenda.  By doing so, he creates “educational engineering that is sweeping our nation in a way it will take YEARS to recover from, as generations of children lose the opportunity for a free, equal, and public education for all.
  • Gates funds mainstream media promoting his own policies through movies like “Waiting for Superman” and NBC’s program titled “Education Nationusing this platform to spread his propaganda.   This is just a drop in the bucket of Gates’ influence over the media, to be sure.
  • Gates uses his unlimited funding to create a two-tiered education system by donating millions of dollars to specialty private charter schools giving unfair advantage to some students while starving public schools are forced to compete through standardized tests he imposes upon them; yet does not impose these same tests upon the charter schools he funds.
  • Gates used his mega money to partner with Pearson Publishing, then takes his federal influence to the state levels through Governors and State Education Departments.  He propagandizes the message that this program is designed at the local level, which couldn’t be further from the truth.  He, through James Shelton III and Barack Obama, created Race to the Top bribes to influence states in application for waivers to No Child Left Behind if they adopted Common Core Standards.  Gates and Pearson created a curriculum and training modules where they offer a few modules of this Common Core curriculum to districts free of charge as bait, influencing the local districts to purchase textbooks, online programs, assessment, re-teaching, higher learning online programs, and GED programs with Pearson, in order to profit from every aspect of public education. 

In Clash of the Titans, in order to gain control Hades first had to release the Kraken.

In addition, Gates broadened his power through helping in the creation of an even viler, more treacherous organism of lobbying, an even more sinister method of campaigning in the form of donating unlimited dollars towards Super PACS; that are then used to render ineffective  the public, the congress, the president, the governors, the courts,  and every branch of government.

Gates  did something  that I believe to be more vile than any other corrupt tycoon to date – Gates has purchased a portion of the US Governmentin his recent take-over of Teach.gov – to this point, something unheard of – a private citizen purchasing part of our government.

Washington State, home of Bill Gates, is the backdrop to this stage of Greek Theater and is one story worth watching.

So far, Washington State had turned away the darkest of Hades powers – the power of privatization through Charter Schools, but in this battle of the Titans every victory, small as it may appear was hard won against this giant demon.  The battle was waged in state after state, leaving Gates’ own Olympic home a challenge he would sink his teeth into until he tasted the blood of triumph.

It may likely depend upon the upcoming state gubernatorial election in Washington State as to whether or not charter schools take hold here.  With Karl Rove bankrolling Rob McKenna, we may also wonder how much Gates is contributing to a Super PAC to get his way in his home town since McKenna calls out to Washingtonians suggesting they could get more Gates money if they would only adopt his DeForms!  I wonder, since how else might McKenna be able to ‘put education at the agenda center of his campaign’?

In a recent blog by Sue Peters of Parents Across America Seattle titled “Good News in Seattle – Corporate Education Reform Tide is Pushed Back”; Peters writes about 2 school board members who triumph, despite the efforts of Hades:

“So this is truly a grassroots victory against ‘ed deform.’

To recap: Here in Seattle, this year we managed to oust our Broad superintendent (Maria Goodloe-Johnson), see our district rid of the last of the costly ‘Broad residents,’ and oust two of the four incumbents who supported and rewarded our superintendent and her corporate ed reform agenda.

The parent activist community in Seattle has also kept the klieg lights on Teach for America, Inc. and the behind-the-scenes political machinations that brought TFA here, as well as the MAP test, which is being misused for teacher evaluations and is a huge waste of time and resources.

So perhaps the tide is turning here in Emerald City towards a more organic and community-centric approach to public education.

We still have many challenges ahead of us in Seattle, and Washington as a whole, the biggest being the gathering, moneyed forces that are pushing for charters. We still have the Gates Foundation right here in Seattle, so as long as that foundation pushes for and bankrolls discredited, failed reforms, those of us in the parent activist community will have our work cut out for us.”  ~  Sue Peters, Founding Member of Parents Across America and Parents Across America – Seattle

Gates – or Pluton — can afford to be patient though, in his role as Hades possessed not only money, but an arrogance that was not to be challenged, for he looks upon himself as both omnipotent and omniscient…. “all-powerful” and “all-knowing” when it came to World of Education, the World of Vaccination, The World of Malaria, The World of Genetically Modified Foods, The World of and so much more.   But his he really omnipotent?  Is he really omniscient?

Leonie Haimson, cofounder of Parents Across America thinks Bill Gates is the ‘most dangerous man in America.”  Based on all of the research I have done and others before me, based on a Olympic-sized mountain of data that Bill Gates is so fond of,  I wholeheartedly agree!

But I also feel, that we – the people are allowing this power to exist and that ultimately it is up to us to become Hercules and defeat Bill Gates, banishing him from his position of threat to what we hold dear.  How willing are the people to do what is necessary?  As Americans together, we could leave Gates dazed and confused in the wake of battle.

This post ends on a note of hope thanks to the good news in Seattle.  If we, the 99% spread the word about this corruption and if enough people in America push back against the Gates of Hades in this real life Clash of the Titans, we will succeed in preserving the public’s rightful domain over education.

In Washington, we are 1- approximately 10 states that do not have Charter Schools.  Don’t take this lightly, for this is a battle that is not over for either side in this war.  In a recent study by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools […a misnomer to be sure as the only ‘public’ part of these charters is the taxpayer’s money!] dated November 2011 the study wrote:

“As the public charter schools movement approaches the 20 year anniversary of the opening of the first charter school, the sector continues to grow. Over 500 new public charter schools opened their doors for the 2011-2012 school year. There are now approximately 5,600 public charter schools. The 7 percent growth in charter schools is a demonstration of parents’ demand for high quality educational options.

Roughly 150 public charter schools that were open in 2010-2011 did not open their doors to students this fall. These schools closed for a variety of reasons, including low enrollment, financial concerns, and low academic performance. The closures provide evidence that the charter school bargain works—schools that do not meet the needs of their students should be closed.”

Together, we have the power of Hercules!

Washington State stands a chance at beating back the privatization EdDeFormers and Bill Gates!  And in Seattle, surrounded by the Olympics, Bill Gates is beginning to lose this war.  I recommend to all of us that we gather together to Occupy Microsoft, Occupy the Gates Foundation, Occupy Pearson Publishing, Occupy Monsanto, Occupy Wireless Generation, and Occupy any other entity that partners with Bill Gates.  Disrupt and impact their ability to profit and take power over us.

Hades: “Let me loose upon them.” ~ Clash of the Titans, [2010] IMDb Quotes

[Perseus draws his divine sword at Hades]
Hades: “I’m a god! I will live forever!
Perseus: “But not here.”
[hurls the sword at Hades, and a lightning bolt from Zeus hits Hades at the same time] ~ Clash of the Titans, [2010] IMDb Quotes

All we need to do is put Gates in his rightful place in our society – give him the power of one simple man and only one man – because that’s all he is… in our world and in any other –  But not here, Bill Gates – not here!  Here in the United States of America — you are merely human.  And sometimes, humans have a price to pay for corruption.

[Note:  Photo above is created via PhotoShop]


Antitrust: The New Monopoly Frontier – Education and The Legacy of Bill Gates

In a 2001 film loosely based on the life of mega-mogul Bill Gates, “Antitrust” packs a punch against the very idea of a “MONOPOLY”.   I can’t help but think about Steve Job’s recent death and do a little comparison of personality traits between rival tycoons Gates and Jobs; how one seemed to want to create things that benefit humanity which in turn created power for himself that he often chose not to wield while the other seems to wants to create only power for himself through monopolies.  While both moguls have been difficult to get along with at the professional level, their impact on the world couldn’t be more different.  What legacy will Bill Gates leave behind?  How will it differ from that of Steve Jobs?

Gates at one point in time gets some attention that seems to have shocked him:  “The attack against Bill Gates is symbolic, it’s against hierarchical power itself.”  ~ Noel Godin


“On February 4th, 1998, Bill Gates has been hit with a cream pie in Brussels. The offender, a Belgian guy, got away. Two helpers, a French woman and a Belgian student have been held in custody for a while by the Belgian police. Read more about the event on C|Net.

Noël Godin, the man behind this, has made it a sport to throw cream cakes in celebrities’ faces. “The attack against Bill Gates is symbolic, it’s against hierarchical power itself.”, Noël said in an interview.”

“Many people wonder why would anybody do this, why would anyone not like Microsoft? The answer is: Microsoft has monopoly power and they abuse this power to get even more power. If you don’t believe this, please read the Findings of Fact from the US district court. At least read the last paragraph:

412. Most harmful of all is the message that Microsoft’s actions have conveyed to every enterprise with the potential to innovate in the computer industry. Through its conduct toward Netscape, IBM, Compaq, Intel, and others, Microsoft has demonstrated that it will use its prodigious market power and immense profits to harm any firm that insists on pursuing initiatives that could intensify competition against one of Microsoft’s core products. Microsoft’s past success in hurting such companies and stifling innovation deters investment in technologies and businesses that exhibit the potential to threaten Microsoft. The ultimate result is that some innovations that would truly benefit consumers never occur for the sole reason that they do not coincide with Microsoft’s self-interest.”

Subsequent to this fact finding, Gates has diversified his MONOPOLY PORTFOLIO in his pursuit of several other targets, first and foremost: Education.

Today on Christiane Amanpour and ABC’s “This Week”, Gates mocked Amanpour  and the 99% who pay more than our fair share of taxes, as she tried to pin him down to answer whether or not he agreed with his partner Warren Buffet regarding “The Buffet Tax” that would increase taxes on the rich.  Gates laughed out loud contemptuously, responding:

“I just can’t imagine these millionaires and billionaires going down and barriciding (sic) the streets because they’re going to have to pay four or five percent more in taxes,” Gates said. ..“I’m not an expert on how we should do taxes. Clearly, you can’t raise the taxes we need just by going after that one percent,” Gates said.

I would agree, he is not a tax expert, nor is he an EDUCATION EXPERT and in fact has a much skewed perspective of education based on his own personal experiences.

A little history: Although Gate’s mother was a school teacher for a very short period, the experiences Gates had in school likely twist his viewpoint as to what education should truly be.  To give you a little history of how education looked for Bill Gates the student, I did a little digging into his biography.

What I discovered was a history of negative behavior struggles that prompted the Gates family to move their son to a private school.  I find it ironic that these private schools promoted by Gates himself today now more often than not exclude children with behavior issues or any special education needs.  In Bio-True Story-Bill Gates the author writes:

“Around the age of 11 or 12, Bill’s parents began to have concerns about his behavior. He was doing well in school, but he seemed bored and withdrawn at times. His parents worried he might become a loner. Though they were strong believers in public education, when Bill turned 13 they enrolled him in Seattle’s Lakeside School, an exclusive preparatory school.”

Gates continues with devious behavior issues at the prep school where he is caught creating the first computer virus.  Here we can clearly see the difference between Gates and Steve Jobs, where Jobs is interested in creating a combination of liberal arts and technology to benefit human kind; Gates is interested in creating a virus that destroys things created by others, summing up the personality differences between the two.

“While working with the Computer Center’s PDP-10, Gates was responsible for what was probably the first computer virus, a program that copies itself into other programs and ruins data. Discovering that the machine was connected to a national network of computers called Cybernet, Gates invaded the network and installed a program on the main computer that sent itself to the rest of the network’s computers, making it crash (became damaged). When Gates was found out, he was severely punished, and he kept away from computers for his entire junior year at Lakeside.”

Read more: Bill Gates Biography – life, family, childhood, children, parents, name, story, history, wife, school http://www.notablebiographies.com/Fi-Gi/Gates-Bill.html#ixzz1cJ1FpiRS

He later goes on to persist in this Machiavellian behavior at Harvard when he uses the government owned computers there to begin his private business interests in creating his first monopoly.

His first monopoly does not go by without a challenge however.

“On May 18, 1998, the DOJ and twenty state attorneys general filed an antitrust suit against Microsoft, charging the company with abusing its market power to thwart competition, including Netscape. On November 5, 1999, Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson issued his initial findings of fact, finding that Microsoft held monopoly power and used it to harm consumers, rivals, and other companies.

The sensational United States v. Microsoft case hit Gates with a double whammy. Besides losing the case (the judge ruled that Microsoft had committed monopolization and tying, blocking competition, in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Ac), Gates’ courtroom behavior (recorded in a series of Videos) badly eroded his already sagging public image.

Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson said that Gates suffers from “a Napoleonic concept of himself and his company, an arrogance that derives from power and unalloyed success.”

Many people correctly predicted that Microsoft would be rescued from justice after George W. Bush was elected President in 2000. But Gates had been permanently branded an arrogant monopolist and a tyrant, a perception that would cost Microsoft dearly. [emphasis added] ~ David Blomstrom, “Bill Gates: A Critical Biography”

The judge isn’t the only one who views Gates this way

“Some people consider Bill Gates the best example of a corrupt capitalist tycoon. Scott McNealy, of Sun Microsystems, said Bill Gates is “probably the most dangerous and powerful industrialist of our age.” ~ David Blomstrom, “Bill Gates: A Critical Biography”

It is well known how Bill Gates rose to the top, and once he got there he did not change his spots.  In 2010 he was found to be exploiting child labor in China as reported by Uppity Woman on her blog post titled “Microsoft caught exploiting child labor in China…Gee, what a surprise!”

“The National Labor Committee released a report called “China’s Youth Meet Microsoft [MSFT]: KYE factory in China produces for Microsoft and other U.S. Companies” on Apr. 13. It accuses KYE (photo, right), a major supplier to the world’s largest software company, of child-labor law violations in its factory in Dongguan, China.

The report says: “KYE recruits hundreds (up to 1,000) ‘work-study’ students 16 and 17 years of age, who work 15-hour shifts, six and seven days a week making webcams, mice and other computer peripherals. Some of the workers appear to be just 14 or 15 years old. A typical shift is from 7:45 a.m. to 10:55 p.m. Most of the students work for three months, but some stay longer.” The investigation was conducted over a three-year period.”

Additionally, Gates uses his lobbying power, PR and children to insure his continued profits through schools.

“One area that Microsoft relies on to keep its monopoly going is the school system. As noted this morning, Microsoft indoctrinates children at taxpayers’ expense, using children to sway an office’s choice of software and using teachers as a training workforce for Windows™ and Office™, among other proprietary software products from Microsoft®.”~ “ Increased Opposition to Bill Gates/Microsoft/Exploitation of Schools, Shameless PR Explainedby Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Yet we all know, “money talks!”  The millions of dollars donated to lobby political candidates, the earmark monies donated with the price of failed policies, and being the richest man in the world who can buy his own audience – all goes a long ways in keeping Gates at the top of the education game. So far he’s partnered with Pearson Publishing, Warren Buffet, and the scandal-ridden Rupert Murdoch on a variety of education projects designed to keep him at the top.  He’s positioned himself politically to insure that regardless of election outcomes; he will remain at the top.

This competitive deviance seems to hold true today as Gates first demonizes teachers and public schools, setting out on the path to creating a narrative virus that infects public schools; all so that he can promote his own products through privatization, while ‘selling it’ as philanthropy!

Well, I’m not buying his Philanthropy scheme!  Neither is Molly Belt who recently wrote about ‘education reform’ on her blog titled “You Stay Out of My Classroom and I’ll Stay Out of Your Boardroom”:

“Education “reform” strikes me as much the same. In fact, I don’t even like calling it “reform”. It’s more of a hostile take-over…

“ ‘Most of the complaints about the foundations are coming from teachers unions or education professors who happen, in this case, to disagree with their preferred strategies,’ says Frederick Hess, education policy director at the American Enterprise Institute.” (Billionaires in the Classrooms, by Alan Greenblatt). Exactly. When the professionals, the experts, are saying that these “reforms” are not positive for education or will not be effective, why do we demonize them instead of listening to them?”

No one can argue that Bill Gates is the richest man in the world, but  will Bill Gates leave behind a legacy just as Steve Jobs has left behind him?

Gates seems to be betting that the world will remember him for his philanthropy.  Does he truly NOT see the damage he is doing to further divide the ‘haves’ from the ‘have nots’?  Does he not realize the stigma of poverty’s impacts let alone the labels of ‘failure’ he gives to children who don’t pass the tests he promotes to rate them?

Gates is either extremely out of touch with reality for those who live in poverty or is exploiting these children for his own personal gain.  You decide for yourself.

Anthony Cody tackles this topic in his blog Living in Dialogue “Teachers Letters to Obama” – “If Only the Billionaires Cared About This Data”.  As do the most prominent education leaders of our time, leaders like Diane Ravitch, Jonathan Kozul, and Stephen Krashen in their discussions about poverty. Here Anthony explores and invites one teacher to share her experience with poverty.

Sarah Puglisi describes what many teachers across America experience that Bill Gates seems to be missing in his world view, his experiences, his perspective – or is it simply because he wants to see MORE of this through his deviant side?

“Homelessness and poverty up close is hard. It smells, actually in my room this year, it takes from the very fiber of a being, it is destructive to those that stand in uselessness looking as well as those suffering it. I’m dealing with a woman and her child suffering terribly now-she should never be alone in this, her faculties are not good enough to deal. She can’t go grow food on some family place, she’s like a forgotten being. And so are the supports that should exist, dysfunctional. But my concern is a child, one not washing, that can’t get into a shelter til after 9 at night that’s out by 5AM, that hasn’t had a real bath in a month. No costume for him. And I need to go buy him a pair of pants or two really, couple shirts and get his clothes and wash them. Among the realities in my teaching work I think I’m beginning to understand what I really need to articulate is what poverty is like to a learner. A child that didn’t pick, nor make any of this. And who is so sweet.” ~ Sarah Puglisi

Of course, this is about a 3rd grade classroom in California, so far away from the Gates Manor.  It really doesn’t matter though, as Gate’s long arm of monopoly reaches into every corner of  what used to be a great public education system.  Flaws, yes, but one that at least attempted to serve ALL children.

What about the children in my classroom in his own backyard?  Perhaps he would say they are doing better since they come to me ‘clean’ and their poverty is not as ‘visible’ to the naked eye, nor can you smell the crisis these students experience,  nor can it be identified through the bubble tests he promotes. But does that mean these inequities don’t exist?

Teachers know all kinds of narratives.  We carry these stories of our children with us in the light of day and through the darkness of night.  But more importantly, our children LIVE these non-fiction stories.

And all the standardized tests, software, online programs, and one-size-fits-all Common Core curriculum in the world is not going to help these kids, Mr. Gates!

Only the caring relationship and belief in each of them given from a real live experienced teacher in a small enough sized classroom that allows differentiation and emotional support will help these kids! 

Only wrap-around services and a rich classroom library will help these kids! 

Only learning that is relevant to EACH of these individuals will help these kids! 

Only the kind of warmth that comes from a real human being vs the cold bubble test or online game will help these kids! 

Only freedom from hunger, sunshine, fresh air, and time spent in in the multi-sensory world of  nature will heal these kids!

And only someone who looks beyond their poverty and into their rich potentials, finding a way to demand that they dig deep enough to see it themselves through the gift of hope will help these kids!

Trust me, that person is NOT Bill Gates!

These are just some of the children in Bill Gates back yard that aren’t helped by his monopoly:  The refugee child from Iraq and their family who were woken in the middle of the night by an American soldier dragging the entire family out of bed, taking the father from the home at gunpoint-  not telling them if or when he was to be returned.  How about the child whose mother is in jail?  Or yet another child whose father is in jail.  What do his schemes do to help the child whose family is going through a divorce and says “I just know it will never go back to the way it was before.” ?  Or the child who lives with ‘foster grandparents’ because mom’s home is condemned?

Nothing!  In fact worse!  As his privatization and focus on standardized testing increases more and more money is siphoned away from the counseling programs, music, library, and PE programs that help serves these children and give them the only joy they experience each day.  Budget cuts form larger class sizes that prevent teachers from providing the additional support these students need to be successful.

Does Bill Gates monopolize his profits on the backs of the children in these narratives and their teachers?  You bet he does!  His exploitation will leave him a legacy not unlike that of Citizen Kane.  There will be those who believe he was purely a philanthropist, giving a future to those who might not have one.  As for me, I know better.  I live in his backyard and see what he is doing to our children.  We are the victims of his narrative and we want to change the story.   He doesn’t deserve to win this one.

What if we demanded that Gates get out of education, that our districts give up all products related to this monopoly, and that if he truly wants to help that he needs to do it our way?

What if we woke up to a different world, a different Bill Gates?  One who funded full day kindergarten across America, Wrap-Around Services, and classroom libraries for all schools in poverty instead of investing in these ‘viruses’ destroying public education today:

  • Standardized testing
  • Common Core Curriculum
  • Charter Schools
  • Online schools

The answer:  If Bill Gates invested in full day kindergarten across America, wrap-around services, and classroom libraries for schools in every public school  he would BENEFIT humanity instead of creating a few winners and many losers in his game of MONOPOLY  – a game that destroys rather than creates.

He would also lose a monopoly, profit, and his deviant power.

Although Bill Gates has appointed himself the Education Czar, he is not God.   And honestly, we have allowed this hostile takeover!

What he might gain would be a positive legacy, trust, and true gratitude from children, parents, as well as teachers across America.

This is not just up to Bill Gates.

Whether or not Bill Gates monopoly remains at the CORE of education is up to us.


Behind the Manor of Gate’s Farm: “Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad”

If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” ~ George Orwell

Today, like so many other authors are trying to do, I am exercising my liberty to tell America’s people what they don’t seem to want to hear.

I am telling all of you that YOU are being led by the nose, by none other than “Pig Brother” like sheep to the slaughter in a Charter School Movement that is successfully throwing America’s Constitution out the window.

” Political language. . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind .” ~ George Orwell

Our own House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 2218, which will mandate the implementation of  Charter Schools in EVERY state, ignoring our own Constitutional Amendments and laws that have been governing equality and civil rights for years.

The promoters of this bill and the privatization of America’s public schools are using the tried and true tactics of lies and propaganda, much like Orwell’s  Animal Farm (1945).

Bill Gates is using these bankrolled ‘education advocates” to get the public behind his evil plan to monopolize education.

“To the world we all know, which may or may not be the best world possible, once again, springtime had come.

But all the magic of spring was not enough to conceal the misery of Manor Farm.

Once thriving and fruitful, the farm and its’ owner,  Mr. Jones had fallen on evil days.” ~  Animal Farm, (1954)

Behind the Manor of Gate’s Farms:

Where All Animals Are Equal, But Some Animals Are More Equal Than Others

These ‘grassroots’ meetings are being hosted by League of Education Voters, bankrolled by Bill Gates, and offered with slick marketing to gather public support that is effectively stripping our children of the protections they need under Federal and State laws.

“Every Sunday, Snowball and Napoleon lead a meeting of all the animals in the big barn. The pigs are the most intelligent animals, so they think up resolutions for the other animals to debate.” ~ Animal Farm Summary by Grade Saver

“Soon after, the pigs set up a study-center for themselves in the harness-room. Snowball embarks on various campaigns for social and economic improvement. Napoleon opposes whatever Snowball does. Because most of the animals lack the intelligence to memorize the Seven Commandments, Snowball reduces them to the single maxim, “Four legs good, two legs bad.” The sheep take to chanting this at meetings.

As time goes by, the pigs increase their control over the animals and award themselves increasing privileges. They quell the animals’ questions and protests by threatening Mr. Jones’s return.

During this time, Napoleon also confiscates nine newborn puppies and secludes them in a loft in order to “educate” them.” ~ Animal Farm Summary by Grade Saver

“Charter Schools Good, Public  Schools Bad”

Bill Gates and these brain-washed groups take on the role of creating “Sheeple”  convincing them to give up their rights, to take away the rights of others, all to privatize and  promote the policies and increased privileges for upper-class -white-English-speaking-straight-mostly-Christian-American-born-school-age-children through Charter Schools.

In this post I will EXPOSE League of Education Voters, one of the so-called “Grassroots Education Advocacy Groups” who are propagandizing Charter Schools.

Here you will see the way of the Segregationists:

” The great enemy of clear language is insincerity.”George Orwell

These Charter Schools, and Bill Gate’s own words,  like the words of propaganda used in Orwell’s Animal Farm — are often preaching to us from on high, using the language of ‘choice’, ‘freedom’, and ‘civil rights’ as outlined in my own blog “The White Shadow:  Bill Gates, Charter Schools, and the Evil Twins”.

This re-segregation is repeated more and more across our country, harming the lives of so many of our children, our families, our teachers, and our public schools.

Here is League of Education Voters introductory paragraph of propaganda:

Charter schools are public schools funded by government dollars. They vary from traditional public schools because they are granted “charters” by authorizers and exempt from many of the federal, state, and local laws regulating traditional public schools. Charter schools first appeared in Minnesota in 1992. Today, there are nearly 5,000 charter schools1 operating in 41 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico2

Creating new charter law
For charter schools to be permissible in Washington State, one of three options must be pursued: initiative to the Legislature, initiative to the people, or bill through the Legislature. Given the history of charters in Washington, a successful measure would most likely include a charter cap, focus on academically disadvantaged students, and allow teachers to join the local teachers union.” ~ League of Education Voters

Charter Schools in Louisiana, New York, Chicago, and many other cities/states across America are not held by the same standards being MANDATED by our Federal and State governments.  Through tax payer dollars they are padding their own pockets while they set up their own RULES, much like the animals did in “Animal Farm“.

Here are “Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad” established in many of the US Charter Schools across America that are being treated as if they are  not ‘governed’ by the rule of our own US  Constitution and state constitutions, as well as Brown vs The Board of Education [ironic as it was also established in 1954], Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, American Disability Act, Title I, and more laws that govern all PUBLIC schools.

“Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad”

[Simplified to show the harshness of exclusion by the process of “Selection” – in my humble opinion, a dangerous form of Eugenics]

Rule #1:  Exclusion by RACE:

Common Dreams author Jim Horn wrote recently in his essay:  “Charter Schools:  What Would Dr. King Say?”

For the charter industry to accuse those who advocate for economic and racial diversity in schools of “racial gerrymandering” is a prime example of the iron pot calling the copper kettle black.  The conscious creation of cheap, segregated containment charters for minorities in the northern cities and privileged white flight charter academies in the South and West is not the work of socioeconomic integrationists or the Civil Rights Project.  It is the work of self-labeled bold reformers and disruptors of the “status quo,” whose engrossment in “market solutions” and bringing “efficiency to scale” has left them no less blind to the effects of their amoral enthusiasms than the well-meaning eugenicists who came onto the stage a hundred years ago during another Gilded Age.”

In “Understanding the “New” Racism through the Urban Charter School” by by Hatt-Echeverria, Beth, Jo, Ji-Yeon, these authors write:

“The purpose of this paper is to deconstruct the new racist discourse within an urban charter school. We especially want to focus upon how the new racist discourse as according above to Giroux (1999) relieves Whites, “of any semblance of social responsibility and commitment.” As multiculturalism and political correctness are being taught and encouraged in our society to work against inequality, they are simultaneously being used by some Whites, particularly the middle and upper classes, to separate themselves from the “bad” Whites, whom are largely framed as the working-class and poor. As a result, a White liberal rhetoric has been developed that talks about “diversity” and “democracy” but does not address power and current racial inequities. Consequently, racism becomes defined as an individual act rather than being attributed to institutional policies and structural issues of privilege in our society. Whites who adopt a pseudo-liberal rhetoric of promoting diversity without pushing for the change of institutional or structural issues then define themselves as “innocent” and absolved of their participation in reproducing racial inequities. For example, often racist attitudes and behaviors get attributed to ignorance, which implies that the people did not really know any better. On the contrary, Whites do know about racism in society and are often choosing carelessly to reproduce it rather than work against it (Groves, 2002; Otto, 2002).

By claiming ignorance and/or innocence, White ways of being in the world, values, and beliefs are left unquestioned and without critique.”

Rule #2, Exclusion by Class:

In an excerpt from Part I of  The Piton Study, I have taken information from the introduction:

“Editor’s note: The study excerpted in this issue of The Term Paper was written by Chungmei Lee, a researcher with the Civil Rights Project at Harvard University.

Denver Public Schools have resegregated dramatically by race and socio-economic status since court-ordered busing ended a decade ago, according to a new study commissioned by The Piton Foundation.

The adverse impacts of segregation will continue disproportionately affecting Denver’s low-income, minority students, unless creative measures are taken to foster more integrated schools for all students, the study concludes.

The issue is an important one, the study argues, because schools filled with students of color are almost always high-poverty schools. And a large body of research clearly shows that low-income students perform significantly better in schools that have a mixed-income population.”

In addition, re-segregation by socio-economic status has proven to have detrimental effects on student learning.  Richard Kalenberg reviews James E. Ryan’s book  “Five Miles Away, A World Apart: One City, Two Schools, and the Story of Educational Opportunity in Modern America” in “The Nixon-Obama Compromise”:

“But the various solutions to improve high poverty schools—more money, charter schools, and federal accountability measures—have not worked. Some liberals, frustrated with integration, argued that “we should concentrate on desegregating the money,” as Derrick Bell put it. Yet as Ryan notes, “most city schools spend above the state average” without showing great results. Indeed, a recent Century Foundation study of public schools in Montgomery County, Maryland found that low-income students in low-poverty neighborhoods who attended low-poverty schools significantly outperformed similar students who attended higher-poverty schools, even though those schools spent considerably more on class size, professional development for teachers, and extended learning time.

Ryan concludes: “The truth is that separating the poor and politically powerless in their own schools and districts is antithetical to the idea of equal educational opportunity.”

Napoléon: All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

Jessie: But they’re my babies.
Squealer: If you were thinking clearly, then you would be pleased of the special education that we’re going to give them. You surely don’t want to disadvantage your own puppies. Do you?
Jessie: No. I don’t.
Squealer: Good, well off you go then. ~ Animal Farm, IMDB

Rule #3: Exclusion by Ability:

Bob Sikes, author of a blog “Scathing Purple Musings”recently exposes Florida Governor Rick Scott’s attempt to segregate by propaganda using corrupt scholarships provided by a company called in his blog post titled “With Fraud Already Present, Was A.L.E.C. Involved in Expanding McKay Scholarships to Florida’s Special Needs Kids?”

Sikes tells us a story of corruption based on students who would remain covered by IDEA in public schools, but are being duped by the offer of scholarships in Florida:

“I don’t often use letters to the editor in a blog post, but Loudon, Tennessee’s Joy Pachucki writes something that may be important to Florida families. The expansion of McKay scholarships by Rick Scott and the state’s republican legislators to include any child with an IEP is in its first year. Pachucki writes to the Knoxville News:

Parents of kids in special education beware: Special education is under attack by the GOP across the nation via the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) — a powerful coalition of corporations and right-wing legislators, and viewable on the web site ALEC Exposed.

ALEC has worked out plans to trick families into giving up their federally protected educational benefits in exchange for cheap vouchers that can be used in unregulated, fly-by-night academies.

The best example of this is Florida’s (Jeb Bush) McKay special education scholarship fund, and the best proposed bill is AB110 in Wisconsin.

How does the scam work? “It is predicated on trading on parents’ legitimate frustrations for what their kids are not receiving and then sprinkle magic fairy dust by saying, ‘Here, we’ll give you a voucher and all your frustrations will go away,’” says Jeff Spitzer-Resnick, attorney for Disability Rights Wisconsin (DRW).

What most parents don’t understand is that disabled students who take advantage of special education vouchers forfeit their rights under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). That is, they no longer have a right to a “free, appropriate public education” or the specific services that come along with that.

Additionally, they give up their chance to get school districts to cover the costs of private education, if the local public schools can’t meet their needs. Embedded in IDEA is the ability to either voluntarily or legally force school districts to pay for private schools.

Even if parents don’t believe vouchers siphon off public funds, there is the very strong motivation for running cheap schools for the disabled: test scores that are required by No Child Left Behind.

Unfortunately, some parents begrudge special-needs kids for “sabotaging” their schools’ test scores, as well as for extra therapy and tutoring. It is hard for me to imagine a worse public policy than what ALEC and Republican state legislators are trying to do to mentally and physically disabled children across America with the vouchers. ~ Joy Pachucki, Loudon

An August editorial from the Orlando Sun-Sentinel called on Florida’s republican legislators to reveal their alignment with the American Legislative Council. The Koch brothers funded organization known by the acronym ALEC, was involved in writing anti-union bills in Florida and elsewhere. Loudon seems to feel that ALEC may have been involved in extending McKay similarly.

Parents are being sold a bill of goods. They get hoodwinked into believing that a scholarship/voucher to a privately run school is often a better solution for their special needs child. When they arrive, they often find out that the services that are required under IDEA aren’t provided at the school they have enrolled their child.  A June Miami New Times investigative story detailed significant fraud already existed in McKay scholarships. Yet Scott, the republican-dominated legislature and apparently, ALEC sought to expand McKay despite the potential for special needs kids to be irreparably harmed.”

In Louisiana, where Milton Friedman reveled in the aftermath of his parasitic profits blown in by hurricane Katrina, his new paradigm of private Charter Schools lock out students with special needs and students who do not pass a test, as written about here, “Our Gated Schools: New Orleans is the only city in the nation where neighborhood children do not have a right to attend any of their open-enrollment neighborhood schools” by Raynard Sanders, Ed.D.:

What is so unfortunate for the children and parents is that the charter school model was sold to them as an inclusive entity, when in reality it is an exclusive entity that selects students just like magnet schools or any other private selective admission school. As a result of the BESE board decision, charter schools have become “Gated Public Schools” for thousands of children.

It is also unfortunate that individual donors, the philanthropic community, and foreign countries have given millions of dollars to improve the educational environment of the students with the greatest needs. Instead of following their wishes and living up to that noble commitment, our educational leaders have re-established a “Separate and Unequal” school district. But this time segregation is based on academic ability, not race: yet it is just as damaging to the students caught in “unequal” side of the equation.”

Rule #4:  Exclusion by Religion:

Some legal suits against the use of vouchers for religious Charter Schools are beginning to take root and bear fruit, but shouldn’t this become a national suit as these vouchers clearly appear to violate the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution?

While I make the rule “Christians Only Allowed” to make my point of our country’s majority religion, Christianity is not the only religion jumping on the voucher system band wagon!

Washington Posts’ author Susan Jacoby writes in her “Many charter schools continue to defy church-state separation “:

More than 1.5 million American children now attend charter schools, thanks to a movement asserting that whatever is wrong with American public education can be fixed by what amounts to a semiprivate–publicly funded but privately managed–school enclave within the larger system. Many representatives of both the cultural right and left have signed on to this Charter of Wishful Thinking, which continues to be seen as a panacea for the ills of public schools even though the most comprehensive evaluation of charter schools, by Stanford University’s Center for Education Outcomes, reveals “in unmistakeable terms that, in the aggregate, charter students are not faring as well” in terms of academic performance as students in comparable public schools. Even worse, and equally unmistakable, is the fact that charter school promoters with specific religious and cultural agendas around the country are using every possible means to skirt the First Amendment and obtain public support for private aims….”

A continuing problem–one most evident in schools with strong ties to religion–is the use of charter school funds by unscrupulous founders to provide jobs for relatives and church members. In Texas, which continues to authorize new religious-connected charters, there have been numerous scandals of this nature. In Houston, the Rev. Harold Wilcox was indicted six years ago for embezzling both state and federal funds at a school that held classes in a Baptist church sanctuary. Wilcox paid himself $210,000 annuallly to run the school. Ten years ago, the state investigated Dallas’s Rylie Faith Family Academy and found dozens of family and church members on the payroll. The school supposedly cleaned up its act, and Rylie Faith still operates two charter schools. One can only imagine the bellows of rage from the religious right, which considers teachers’ unions a stand-in for Satan, if similar nepotism was discovered in a public school

It is truly deplorable that both conservative and liberal politicans, from the White House to the state houses, continue to hop aboard the charter school bandwagon without regard for the daily assaults on the separation of church and state–and the concept of civic unity–that these schools represent. Forget about E pluribus unum. That’s so eighteenth century.”

Rule #5: Exclusion by Sexual Orientation:

Due to the lack of regulation of the so called “Public” Charter Schools which are REALLY PRIVATE schools funded by America’s public tax payers, there is a grave concern about the allowance of prejudice towards the LGBT students.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute completed a study of ISSUES AFFECTING LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, AND TRANSGENDER YOUTH by Jason Cianciotto and Sean Cahill and in it they conclude:

“The school choice movement is likely to continue to be a presence in the debate on improving public education in the U.S. Ideally, all youth, gay and straight, would be able to receive a first-rate education by attending a public school that is free of any type of violence and harassment. Nonetheless, it would be wrong to ask today’s youth to bear the entire burden of creating the public schools of tomorrow by not acknowledging that
some of today’s public schools are substandard, unsafe, and educationally unsound. For LGBT youth experiencing harassment, progressive charter schools with explicit values
of acceptance may provide a much-needed alternative to their public schools. Charter schools might also provide an opportunity to replicate successful LGBT-supportive
schools like New York City’s Harvey Milk High School. But the decentralized nature of charter school governance leaves them particularly susceptible to homophobic policies.
Given the increasing popularity of the charter school movement, it is important to advocate for the inclusion of LGBT-friendly curricula and policies at all such schools.
Administrators of charter or private schools may simply be unwilling to implement safe schools initiatives that promote tolerance, creating hostile environments for LGBT youth and the children of LGBT families. Even in states with nondiscrimination laws protecting LGBT people, such legislation often exempts private or religious institutions. (372)

Because of these serious limitations, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) warns of the negative impact that school voucher and other privatization programs can have on LGBT youth:
Public money should be spent on improving the nation’s public schools rather than diverted to private institutions that may not be accountable to local educational policies and may not provide equal access or treatment for all students. (373)”

Rule #5:  Exclusion by Language:

In Choice without Equity- Civil Rights Project by Erica Frankenberg, Genevieve Siegal-Hawley, and Jia Wang write:

“In a nation where one-fifth of all children are born into homes where the parents don’t speak English (the vast majority Spanish-speaking), and a tenth of all students are classified as English language learners (ELL) students, basic equity as well as federal civil rights law requires that charter schools welcome and provide needed educational services for this large group of students. There is a shocking lack of basic data on enrollment of ELL students in charter schools, even in the state with by far the largest ELL population, California. Where data is available, it appears that ELL students are seriously underrepresented.  If that is true, it is essential to examine whether or not charters are fulfilling their legal and educational obligations to this very important group of students who experience extremely high dropout rates. The government should act immediately to require this data at the school level from all charter schools, and should investigate evidence of the causes of severe under-representation.”

Clearly our civil rights are being violated daily by the implementation of Charter Schools. 

Clearly the US Constitution and Education Acts have been  taken over by the “Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad” .

My questions then become:

  1. On what grounds are our own legislators allowed to throw out the laws of equity under our own Constitution and Education Acts? 
  2. Why haven’t the NAACP, ACLU, and Southern Poverty Law brought suit against the Federal Government and all 50 states who are clearly breaking these laws of our land?
  3. Why don’t we dump Bill Gates like NYC dumped Rupert Murdoch before it is too late?

And finally: Will you stand up for civil rights for ALL children in America? 

Or will you let these Orwellian Corporate Philanthro-PIRATES and our own legislators, our own President, and our own Supreme Courts get by with breaking the law?

Where is the public outrage, the Federal and State lawsuits, and why aren’t union leaders taking on “Pig Brother” in a general strike for the civil rights issue of our era?


The White Shadow: Bill Gates, Charter Schools, & The Evil Twins

Alfred Hitchcock "The White Shadow"

Someone commented about the graphic nature of the photos in my last blog post where I draw an analogy from Bill Gates/Pearson’s Common Core Curriculum to “The Blob”.

This blog is being written about  a serious topic in very dark times.  “The Blob” was a B-Movie cult classic that was considered by the masses to be far from reality.

However, our true situation with our public schools is a very graphic tale of public education  where the truth has become stranger than fiction.

I warn you in advance, some of the scenes in this dark tale relating to Alfred Hitchcock’s life of mystery may be considered graphic.

Today,  in these dark times,  I present to you  — a dark mystery worthy of Alfred Hitchcock:

Recently,  a  discovery was made, a discovery of a silent film crediting Alfred Hitchcock as playing a heavy hand in its creation called:  “The White Shadow”.

Sometimes it is "The White Shadow" of racism, colored with the lies of angelic language that we must fear most.

The Film Archive  and Lucy Cramer with “The Scene” described the film as a “wild, atmospheric” melodrama starring Betty Compson in a dual role as twin sisters, one angelic and one soulless.

Dual Roles Where Lines Become Blurred to Viewers

Our public schools are under attack in a way that may end much like one of Hitchcock’s films.

This is a tale of one character in this play, Bill Gates.   Here we will explore how to expose his duality as  I see it:

Bill Gates, like Betty Compson,  seems to play two roles

that could not be more opposite in nature.

Bill Gates starring in the role as:

Gates Black Shadow

The Angelic Philanthropist.

and

Bill Gates starring in the role as:

Bill Gates as "The White Shadow" - his alter ego Evil Twin Casting Re-Segregation on America's Public Schools

The Evil Fascist and Soulless Segregationist.

It was not too long ago when American public schools were segregated, discussed here by a student on Thinkquest.  

“During Kennedy’s Inaugural address on January 20, 1961, he said, “All this will not be finished in the first hundred days. Nor will it be finished in the first thousand days, nor in the lifetime of this Administration, nor even perhaps in our lifetime on this planet. But let us begin.” The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was a start to helping blacks and whites to be treated as equals.”

Unfortunately, I lived through this dually horrible and hopeful period in time, yet I can tell you; we are now living in a time far more segregated than post-Reconstruction after the Civil War.

Our White-Shadow racist culture was  reflected in the movies of our times. Here you can see Tippi Hedren and the mono-culture of the pre-1964 segregation in Hitchcock’s “The Birds”.

Teachers and School Children, Public Schools Under Attack

While Bill Gates boasts of programs he is bankrolling that promote civil rights and equity; I am writing this blog to expose him  and the imposters.

He is an actor posing as Philanthropist, joining with other Philanthropists and ‘advocacy groups where they are truly acting as a murder of crows, attacking public school children, attacking civil rights, and destroying all of our hard earned equities  from multiple angles.

Outnumbered by Unlimited Bankrolling and Corporate Controls of Government Ed Policies, High-Stakes Testing, Unfunded Mandates

A Murder of Crows Attack From All Angles

Some of the ways these Corporate De-Formers and our own government are demolishing our public schools is through unfunded mandates, which peck mercilessly at our public school children, families,  teachers, administrators, and schools.  These unfunded mandates create initiatives that narrow curriculum removing the arts, PE, music, recess, and vocational technical programs.  They create mandates of 2 hours of reading and 2 hours of math in many districts, leaving students with a horrible taste in their mouth about learning, hating school, and often dropping out.

Budget cuts, large class sizes, teacher lay-offs, increasing mandated high-stakes testing, Common Core scripted curriculum in a one-size-fits-all mechanized mentality;  have all taken their toll on our children and schools.

The attacks don’t stop there, however,  for with the narrowed curriculum forced upon us we are unable to teach civics, critical thinking, and problem solving that will help these children matriculate into fully active participants in our democracy.

The worst attacks  in our modern tale are racism, classicism,  ability-elitism, and religious prejudice.

Sometimes it is “The White Shadow” of racism, colored with the lies of angelic language that we must fear most.  It does not surprise me in the least that children, families, and teachers find themselves at odds with the system that oppresses them all.

As this re-segregation and Charter School Movement march relentlessly across America; children, families, and teachers often leave the public school system disheartened and contemptuous, looking for a more humane place to learn.

Note from Hitchcock's movie "The Ring" demonstrates how children, families, and teachers in public schools may be feeling. Justifiably so...

While these are criminal attacks that require legal action, I am slowly beginning  to see the NAACPACLU,  and Southern Poverty Law Center involved, but their involvement needs to be at a national level and include EVERY state in our union.

Up close and personal attacks on ALL public school children

One delivery system of  Re-Segregation is the Charter School Movement. Our own public is being duped as the De-Formers are using our own language wrapped in the false packaging of duality.

Bill Gates and these evil entities cloaked in their alter egos rob us of our own language of education and civil rights taking this stolen property and forming it into twisted evil twins, packaged like  soulless ghosts of their true higher selves.  Gates and his philanthro-cronys’  slick marketing of Charter Schools includes the following dual-language:

Choice = Private Corporate Controls

Equity = “Savage Inequalities”

Freedom = Freedom for Elites Only

Civil Rights = Exclusion based on Race, Religion, Class, Ability, Language, Sexual Preference, etc.

The  Charter School Movement was first led by the Corporatocracy, beginning post-Katrina by the Friedman Foundation as described by Naomi Klein in her introduction to her 2009 book “Shock Doctrine”.  Bill Gates [via his former employee James Shelton] and these foundations  also control Education Policies through the Office of Innovation and Improvement under the Department of Education,  creating  a stranglehold on America’s public schools.

Gates and our Corporatocracy Controlled Government have a stranglehold on America's Public Schools

Charter Schools, Vouchers, and the privatization of America’s public schools are creating the most immoral and  “SAVAGE INEQUALITIES” of modern time as described by Jonathan Kozol in his recent research on public schools.

What startled Kozol most was the remarkable degree of segregation he found nearly everywhere he went, and the fact that no public official, in any school district, questioned this. During Black History Month, dutiful references were sometimes made to “The Dream,” Martin Luther King’s vision of a nation in which black and white children went to school together, but the contents of the dream was “treated as a closed box that could not be opened without spoiling the celebration.” Only the students, themselves, seemed to recognize this.”

“We have a school…named for Dr. King,” said one 14 year-old girl, “The school is full of sewer water and the doors are locked with chains. Every student in that school is black. It’s like a terrible joke on history.”

Multiple Layers of Actions Take Center Stage on Many Stages, Making it Difficult to Fight Back Giving Vertigo to Those Trying to Protect Civil Rights/Public Schools

America’s public schools are being pushed down a spiral staircase of this  melodrama, which is being played out on several stages in America.  These stages include:

  1. The foundation websites,  such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundations which co-opt our language.
  2. The faux grassroots organizations that attract well-meaning public players by the droves to be bankrolled with unlimited funding.
  3. The public schools where corporate controlled education policies mandate high stakes testing designed to fail students, teachers, and schools — a standard mandated ONLY in our public schools.
  4. The Charter Schools that segregate our students through these ‘savage inequalities’.

    Strange Suggestions to Public Schools Through 100% Proficiency Requirements of NCLB and Teacher Evaluations Tied to Student Performance Through Race to the Top

One Disturbingly Strange Suggestion and  a

Case of Dual Polar Opposite Expectations:

Do you not find it odd that while our government continues to push high-stakes testing as policy number one at ALL public schools through NCLB and Race to the Top; our Charter Schools  are not required to the same?

This self-fulfilling prophecy of failure  is only part of the public school system, while our government has joined the Charter School Pushers, promoting Charter Schools which do not require high-stakes testing!

Through Race to the Top, public school teachers are asked to slip a noose of teacher evaluations tied to student test scores around their own necks.

With full knowledge of the death scene about to unfold public school teachers are asked to administer tests to students in poverty,  students who do not speak or comprehend English, and students who for other reasons do not perform well on standardized tests.

Once tested, these results will be used against these same teachers to fire them should their students not meet standard.

Charter School students and teachers are NOT held to these same standards.  What kind of dual standards is our government setting up and why, if not to fail public schools all along?   Maureen Downey thinks so in her article entitled: “No Child Left Behind:  A Conspiracy Against Public Education Too Few Called Out. “

Charter Schools and Vouchers Used as Weapons of Mass Destruction

All of these attacks prove that we are in all out war with the Privateers who are digging the graves of public education.

One of the most devastating weapons of mass destruction used in this modern time war on equity and civil rights, a war on the American Public School system, is the privatization movement otherwise known as Charter Schools and the Voucher System.

Diane Ravitch, former Assistant Secretary of Education under George W. Bush, has pivoted 180 degrees on her views about Charter Schools as the scenes across America that had promised the ‘innovation and improved’ results, turned evil before her eyes.

Charter Schools are breaking down the walls between church and state in every state they have succeeded in achieving their stranglehold.

Privatization and Charter Schools are Digging the Grave of the Separation Between Church and State

Stephen Goldstein takes Charter Schools to task using Diane Ravitch to support him in his recent post,

“Stop the Spread of Charter Schools!  They are a Scam!”

In her November 2010 critique of “Waiting for Superman,” the much-touted David Guggenheim film touting the virtues of charters, Ravitch rips (what she calls) his pro-charter propaganda:

Why did he not . . . inquire into the charter chains that are mired in unsavory real estate deals, or take his camera to the charters where most students are getting lower scores than those in the neighborhood public schools? Why did he not report on the charter principals who have been indicted for embezzlement, or the charters that blur the line between church and state? Why did he not look into the charter schools whose leaders are paid $300,000-$400,000 a year to oversee small numbers of schools and students?” ~ Stephen Goldstein

Charter Schools Have NOT Yet Taken Root in Washington State

Charter Schools have not taken root in Washington State as yet, but alongside the recent discovery of “The White Shadow” Hitchcock  film, Bill Gates begins bankrolling 3 ‘education advocacy’ front groups posing as ‘grassroots’ organizations, as noted by Linda Shaw in the Seattle Times:

  1. The League of Education Voters
  2. Stand for Children
  3. Partnership for Learning in Washington State

All three organizations are Charter School pushers, posing again as the angelic twins.  All three spout hyperbole about their agendas on equity, civil rights, choice, freedom, etc.

It is only a matter of time before the masses will likely be SPELLBOUND by their slick marketing tactics as we know The League of Education Voters is campaigning in homes across WA state as this blog is written.

Parents and So-Called "Education Advocates" are Held Spellbound by the Philanthro-PIRATE's Language and Packaging

The sad truth of the matter is: Parents with good intentions are being duped and held SPELLBOUND as they buy into this marketing scheme of language packaging, getting duped while it takes time to ferret out the real evil twin’s intentions of re-segregation.

In the meanwhile, the grave for public education is being dug one shovel-full, one Charter School at a time.

The Grave for Public Schools is Being Dug One Shovel-full at a Time

Vouchers have become a way to force all taxpayers to pad the pockets of Privateers who start Charter Schools.  Yes, ALL of us are paying for Charter Schools as if we were buying tickets to a premiere film which we are subsequently not allowed to attend.

NO ONE Appointed Bill Gates as the CZAR of Education

Who gives Bill Gates these rights to control public education on such a grand scale?

NO ONE appointed Bill Gates as the CZAR of public education!  The Seattle Times reported on his bankrolling efforts and interviewed local Parents Across America supporter, Sue Peters and Save Seattle Schools blogger, Melissa Westbrook:

“Nobody elected Bill Gates to run our schools, and yet his money is driving so many policies and so many of these reforms,” said Sue Peters, a parent and co-founder of the local chapter of Parents Across America, which has about 50 members and tracks the foundation’s connections in this state.

Parents, she said, “are drowned out because we don’t have the dollars behind us.”

She and other critics also suspect the foundation is involved in more than meets the eye.

“It’s starting to look a lot like they’re controlling, like they’re a puppet master,” said Melissa Westbrook, an activist who writes for Save Seattle Schools blog. “It makes a lot of us very uneasy because we think there has to be more voices at the table.”

Hope for Public Schools

There are few signs of hope in this battle, but one education leader, Jim Horn writes about a recent win in Denver Schools where a judge rules against the Voucher system with just cause here on his blog,  “Schools Matter”:

“A Denver judge blocked Colorado’s first school voucher program Friday, calling the program to give parents in the state’s wealthiest county checks for tuition at religious schools a “substantial disservice to the public interest….
The voucher opponents argued the program violates the separation of church and state because it gives taxpayer money to parents for use at approved private schools, including some religious schools.

The judge noted that some of the schools authorized for Douglas vouchers require students to attend religious services. Martinez said the voucher program “violates both financial and religious provisions set forth in the Colorado constitution.” ~  Jim Horn [Note:  As author of Living Behind the Gates, I humbly apologize for an incorrect citation where I previously credited Dr. Stephen Karshen for authoring the above quote.   While Dr. Krashen frequently writes for Schools Matter blog, this piece was not his, but  rather Jim Horn’s.]

This is not the norm, however.  Charter Schools have ravaged Louisiana’s public school system since Katrina.  The statistics in this full article, “The Problem With New Orleans’s Charter Schools” by Brentin Mock are WELL worth the read.

At the Save Our Schools March in Washington, D.C. this summer an African American Charter School victim gave me his first hand account of his experience.  When he went to school his Charter School Principal told him, “Get home and don’t come back!  We already got the money for you!”

Some  legal action has been taken in Louisiana, this time to protect students who are segregated based on ability,  but despite this case; Louisiana’s children are still being held hostage by the Charter Schools.

“National media outlets have similarly gushed over New Orleans, some going so far as to suggest that Katrina saved the public-education systemin the city.

But is this supposed revolution really helping the most-disadvantaged students in New Orleans, those with special needs such as physical, behavioral, or mental disabilities? In July, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) filed a legal complaint against the Louisiana Department of Education alleging that schools have been turning away parents with disabled children and shirking their responsibilities to ensure that the special-needs students they do serve actually benefit from academic instruction. The complaint asserts that New Orleans schools are in violation of the federal Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), particularly in terms of excessive punishment of children with emotional and behavioral problems.”

The mysteries of this melodrama are real and they couldn’t be darker in fiction as we struggle through these ‘savage inequities’ too long to list in one blog.

These questions remain:

  • Will Washington State judges hold back the floodgates of Charter Schools and Vouchers to save public schools?
  • Will the Save Our Schools organization and Parents Across America garner enough support to fight against the unlimited funds of Bill Gates and the pack of Privateers?
  • Will the people of Washington rise up against these egregious civil rights attacks?
  • Will the NAACP and the ACLU involve themselves on a national level to protect the rights of children across America’s public school landscape? 
  • Will the bloggers and social media authors do enough exposure of the dualities to stop these Privateers by educating the masses?
  • Will the White Shadow of Racism and the “Savage Inequalities”  finally be ended by public school teachers, parents, and student protests?

We’ll have to wait until the end of the movie  —  or — take control and write our own ending!


Common Core: BEWARE: The BLOB! Scream Now While You Can Still Breathe!

TERROR HAS NO SHAPE!

Henry Martin:  “Well then, young lady, do you mind telling me where you’ve been spending the evening?”
Jane Martin:  “Daddy, it’s all right.”
Henry Martin: [sarcastically] “Oh, yes, everything’s fine, I always stop by the police station in the middle of the night to pick up my daughter. Don’t you realize that by morning this will be all over town?”
Jane Martin:  “Well we were just trying to warn people.”
Henry Martin:   “After all, I am the principal at the high school.”

Common Core Curriculum is spreading like “The Blob”  across America’s public schools and is little more than another way for Bill Gates to control education, profit from it, and manage his ‘hidden agenda.

Should we have Common Core Standards at All?

“The question that first needs to be asked is whether we should have common core standards at all. The idea of standards seems to be innocent and common-sense, but the current movement, from the beginning, has been a means to establish national tests, which are unnecessary (we already have plenty of tests that do the job very well; in fact, we have far more than we need), and expensive (MUCH more expensive than we originally thought).

Susan Ohanian has made this analogy: ‘Proposing standards is like giving out menus to the starving. To extend the analogy, instead of providing food, we are debating what should be on the menu.’  ~ Stephen Krashen, Schools Matter

Is Common Core Curriculum taking hold of professional organizations, becoming a systemic infection?

As ‘online learning’ becomes more prevalent in Common Core teaching and testing, professionalism gets eaten alive by this systemic infection.

“In the curriculum race, the Gates Foundation has made the professional organizations irrelevant. NCTE and IRA should have done the right thing and opposed the Common Core Standards from the get-go. Instead, assuming a Johnny-come-lately role, NCTE now holds a virtual conference telling teachers how to get in line with the Common Core. You can sign right up and join the lemmings for just $175 for four interactive, 60-minute online sessions. ”

~ Susan Ohanian, Substance News

Where does Randi Weingarten, President of AFT stand on the  Common Core?

“When Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers, chose to make billionaire teacher basher and union buster Bill Gates a featured speaker during the national convention of the AFT in Seattle in July 2010, she not only insulted every unionist and the militant history of the union movement in the Pacific Northwest, but she signaled that she would continue to betray the nation’s public schools and her own members in the coming years, and as long as she holds office.”

~ Susan Ohanian, Substance News

If we allow Gates and Pearson’s laboratory of horrors to spread this infection, to monopolize all curricula across America, this MEGA-MONOPOLY BLOB will be “Indescribable, Indestructible, and Nothing will be able to STOP it!

As Stephen Krashen said 8-24-11 on blogradio with TFT “Common Core sounds good, like common sense, but it turns out it is the absolute wrong thing to do for several reasons!  What this version of Common Core really means is tests! Arne Duncan says the heavy lifting is going to come when we turn all this into tests…. We already have more than enough tests.  No unnecessary testing!  Keep and improve the NAEP.  When you go to the doctor, they don’t take all your blood.  They just take a little sample…  “

Bill Gates’ partnership with Pearson to create Common Core Curricula is leading us to additional standardized testing.

Is our government protecting us from “The Blob”? 

Diane Ravitch wrote recently in Bridging Differences, Education Week:

“The scariest thought is that the Obama administration welcomes the corporatization of public education. Not only welcomes the rise of educational entrepreneurialism, but encourages it. U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s chief of staff Joanne Weiss, who has experience as an education entrepreneur, wrote the following in a blog for the Harvard Business Review:

“The development of common standards and shared assessments radically alters the market for innovation in curriculum development, professional development, and formative assessments. Previously, these markets operated on a state-by-state basis, and often on a district-by-district basis. But the adoption of common standards and shared assessments means that education entrepreneurs will enjoy national markets where the best products can be taken to scale.” ~ Joanne Weiss

How will this systemic infection become indescribable, indestructible, and one that nothing can stop?

Just imagine the idea to create text books for EVERY child in America’s public schools by this partnership mega-monopoly!  This action will lead to its  ability to produce and sell a series of white-washed textbooks and standardized tests to go with them for every single public school for every single child.  There are 52 million school age children in America: imagine the profits of this mega-monopoly!

Launching an Invasion:  An Invasion of Privacy

Bill Gates has recently  partnered with News Corp  Rupert Murdoch.  Murdoch may still face charges in the US over  wire-tapping private citizens to publish and profit from information collected illegally. 

NYC recently dumped Murdoch due to his phone-tapping scandal.


“The controversy proved too much for the state to stomach…

In light of the significant ongoing investigations and continuing revelations with respect to News Corp., we are returning the contract with Wireless Generation unapproved,” DiNapoli’s office wrote to the Education Department.”

~ BY Kenneth Lovett
DAILY NEWS ALBANY BUREAU, Saturday,

August 27th 2011, 11:19 AM

Bill Gates and Pearson will administer, score, and manage post-testing  results of all of our schools – of EVERY single public school child in America then subsequently RATING them in the largest study every done by private corporations!

In doing so, they will be gathering private data about every single public school age child in America. 

Do you want Bill Gates to have all of this data? 

How will he use this data in the future?

Already Bill Gates controls all NCLB and Race to the Top Earmark dollars through the Office of Innovation and Improvements Director James Shelton who worked for the Gates Foundation for 5 years prior to his position.

The adoption of Common Core Curricula and testing through this mega-monopoly will exponentially give Bill Gates and Pearson control over all public education!

Is Common Core a credible and research based curricula?

The CCSS represents a massive unevaluated experiment with our students for which they and their parents have been ill informed and have had no opportunity for input. The CCSS are untested and unevaluated in the classroom. The proposed CCSS should undergo rigorous testing in a limited number of districts before adoption and implementation statewide or nationwide.

Some Validation Committee members would not sign off on the CCSS. Don’t you wonder why, especially when these standards have been promoted as being so wonderful?”

~ The Underground Parent

Neither of these partners are education leaders.  Neither of these partners have the best interest of children in mind, nor do they KNOW what is best for ALL children.  Nor has this program that is all about TESTING be assessed, nor is it ‘research based’!

How else will Gates/Pearson Common Core

marginalize our students in public schools?

One-size-does-not-fit-all!

Learning needs to be relevant to our individual students.  Learning needs to be relevant to individual and group cultures!  Common Core removes ALL such relevancy to individual learners providing only a whitewashed narrowed perspective throwing all authentic learning out the window while giving these Philanthro-Pirates access to private information about every single child in America!   Think about it folks!

WARNING!!!  Scream NOW while you can still breathe! 

Do NOT give Bill Gates  and Pearson this much control

over our country,

our children,

and our personal data!

Why don’t we ALL dump Bill Gates and Pearson in the same way NY dumped Murdoch?


Gates & The Land of Oz: OII, NCLB, & RTTT

Guardian of the Emerald City Gates


Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: “Who rang that bell?”
Dorothy, Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Tin Woodsman: [all four together] “We did!”
Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: “Can’t you read?”
Scarecrow: “Read what?”
Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: “The notice!”
Dorothy:  “What notice?”
Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: “It’s on the door – as plain as the nose on my face! It… oh… ”

Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: [gasps] “The Wizard? But nobody can see the Great Oz! Nobody’s ever seen the Great Oz! Even I’ve never seen him!”  [All Oz quotes, as taken from IMB, Favorite Quotes of the Wizard of Oz]

Based on the No Confidence Vote by NEA for the past two years awarded to Arne Duncan, you would think he was the man behind the curtain in the Land of Oz. This surreal classic tale is rife with reality in the Department of Education, and the Neo-Corporatocracy hostage government. Today I am writing to expose the REAL man behind the curtain of NCLB and  RTTT in the Land of Oz.

Duncan as "Wicked Witch of the West" and Dorothy as "Public Schools"

Duncan’s role suddenly switches to become the Wicked Witch.

Wicked Witch of the West:  “Ring around the rosie, a pocket full of spears! Thought you were pretty foxy, didn’t you? Well! The last to go will see the first three go before her! And your mangy little dog, too!”

Public Ed Caught in Storm of Century Between Forces of NCLB and RTTT

Public education is caught F5 storm of century, 2 fronts which have been building pressure like a  freight train crashing down on children and teachers,  NCLB and RTTT.  Who is behind the scenes of this storm?

I’ve found the data, that 4 letter word teachers across the land have all begun to hate…  the data that exposes the man behind the curtain of NCLB & RTTT…

Wizard of Oz: “Do not arouse the wrath of the great and powerful Oz. I said come back tomorrow.”

The evidence that backs up my dogmatic thinking came yesterday from a site called AllGov- Everything Our Government Really Does.

What is lurking behind the curtain of the Department of Education, NCLB, and RTTT

The Office of Innovation and Improvement   [OII]

Overview: “Located within the Department of Education, The Office of Innovation and Improvement (OII) manages various grant programs, ranging from charter schools to dropout prevention, and coordinates the public school choice and supplemental education services that are provided under the No Child Left Behind Act. In managing these grant programs and implementing new educational reforms, OII attempts to improve student achievement, increase parental awareness, and prepare the educational system, both technologically and instructionally, for more advanced learning.

What it does: The Office of Innovation and Improvement was created in order to help manage the spending of money created by the No Child Left Behind Act. In addition, the OII decides how to distribute the funds of its 28 grant programs (see below). When distributing these funds, their main goal is to improve student achievement, increase parental awareness, and keep the education system up to date. The OII is also responsible for administering earmarks, which are funds allocated by Congress to be spent on predetermined projects.

The Flying Monkeys of  Earmark Funds governed by OII:

  OII Grants and Initiatives

Who is lurking behind the curtain of OII, pulling the strings of  NCLB & RTTT?

“James H. Shelton III has served as assistant deputy secretary for innovation and improvement since April 2009, putting him in charge of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement. In this position, he oversees the $650 million Investing in Innovation Fund. President Barack Obama pledged to prohibit government employees from doing business with former employers.

However, Shelton was granted a waiver to deal with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, for which he worked for more than five years prior to joining the Obama administration.” – [All-Gov, DOE, OII]

Clearly, James H. Shelton, III worked under the Bush Administration to govern the funding for Bush’s schtick, NCLB, and through the waiver was a hand-me-down to then govern the funding of Obama’s carrot RTTT.

But Shelton is just one of the many Flying Monkeys, leaving Duncan to act as the Wicked Witch.

Based on Shelton’s 5 years at the Gates Foundation, we know who the real man behind the curtain is now.

Bill Gates is Behind the Curtain in the Land of NCLB and RTTT

Wizard of Oz: [speaking in a booming voice into microphone]

“I am the great and powerful… ”
[then, realizing that it is useless to continue his masquerade, moves away from microphone, speaks in a normal voice]

Bill Gates  is exposed as the man behind the curtain who pulls all the strings for NCLB & RTTT.

Gates, Duncan, and the Flying Monkeys Hold Public Ed Hostage

The Great and Powerful Oz, the Wicked Witch of the West, and the Flying Monkeys are still alive, all of them covering the skies of every state in a Murder of Flying Monkeys, snatching up the PUBLIC, locking them up behind the Gates of the Emerald City,  forever to be kept  out of public education. Truth is stranger than fiction!

Gates, Duncan, and the Flying Monkeys Hold PUBLIC ED Hostage


Under Pressure From Gates: Top Down, Bottom Up, and Sideways

The pressure of a wounded public school system is being felt as Philanthro-PIRATE Bill Gates and his foundation wield their  unlimited funds and larger than life A.L.E.C.-like jaws to influence education policy.  This wound is gaping and  can be felt across the country as the legs of the public schools stand  caught in his deadly trap,  squeezed with teeth baring down on the bone.

I believe the Gates are acting out a plan that has been pressuring public schools from the top down, the bottom up, and sideways.  Proof of that pressure is surfacing like puss bursting out of the top of a boil.

Some of that infection has ruptured out with intensity and urgency created by the pressure that has been building over No Child Left Behind.

The wounded have left a trail of  screaming  hot words blasted clear like a Jimi Hendrix guitar riff at Secretary Duncan, President Obama, governors, legislators, and mayors;  tearing through the silence from congress as America waits for years to hear about what they plan to do about No Child Left Behind.   Blogs, newspapers, Facebook  Twitter, letters to legislators, and phone messages boxes  are filled with rants of outrage across the country until a few days ago when finally; even Arne Duncan, in a recent report,  says that he must take an unprecedented measure to act ending No Child Left Behind without congress.

 “I can’t overemphasize how loud the outcry is for us to do something right now,” Mr. Duncan told reporters. ~ Sam Dillon, The New York Times, Education

A little history about the Gates Foundation might be in order.   When did they begin lobbying presidents and congress to influence education policy from the top down? When did they first begin doling out money to influence education from the bottom up?  When did they start branching  out to influence education sideways?

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation first began in 1994.  The first steps toward an education related interest started by donations to libraries.  I’ll be the first to say, and I believe Stephen Krashen would agree, I wish they would go back to their interest in donating to libraries!  What a different world it would be today!

Here’s a bit of the history, specific to its involvement in education, taken directly from the Gates Foundation itself  that can be found here.

 Pressure from the Top Down:

Open Secrets tells us about the political contributions of Bill Gates when comparing the 2 mega corporate rivals of Microsoft to Apple:

“Between his success with Microsoft and his globe-trotting charity work, many consider Gates to be among the most generous of the world’s wealthiest people. Politicians certainly can’t disagree: In two decades, Gates, Microsoft’s founder and current chairman, has given away more than half a million dollars to federal candidates, political party committees and political action committees. And he’s spread it out evenly, too, giving to Republicans and Democrats alike. The 19 percent of his political giving that hasn’t went to either party as predominantly gone to the Microsoft PAC.

Though individual contributions from Laurene Powell Jobs helped narrow the gap, Microsoft takes the category in full, thanks to an active political action committee, a slew of individual contributions made by employees and a tiny boost from the PC guy himself.

But ultimately, it’s Microsoft that comes out on top in this digital matchup. With a longtime presence inside the Beltway and a bulging political budget, Microsoft spends millions of dollars on lobbying and campaign contributions — enough to still put the prize well out of reach for a steadily surging Apple.”

In addition, Open Secrets lists Microsoft Corp. as #41 in the all-time heavy hitter list of campaign donors. It also says that they ‘sit on the fence’ politically!  Bruce Levine writes about this fence sitting as a way for corporations to create a mono-party system where the candidates are forced to be beholden to the corporations – both Democrats and Republicans, giving the voters a false sense of choice between parties. By donating equally to candidates of both parties,  Bill Gates plays this game well, applying extra top-down pressure regardless of who is in office at the time, insuring that HIS agenda gets pushed through.

These  reports don’t begin to tell the story though, due to the small little issue called earmark funds. I did a little Google search and came up with quite a list of Gates Foundation earmarks that hopscotch across the country giving him political clout where ever he goes with his checkbook.  I’m not going to bore you with all of them here, because the list is just too long.  And in finding it I found something MUCH, MUCH more important…

Bill Drives the Department of Education Big Ed Bus ~Evidence of Top Down Control Over the Department of Education by the Gates Foundation:

When Googling this search I came across what is likely not yet a well known fact published by a site called AllGov – Everything Our Government Really Does.   What is lurking behind the Department of Education?  What is lurking behind No Child Left Behind?  Or should I say “WHO” is lurking….???

Overview: “Located within the Department of Education, The Office of Innovation and Improvement (OII) manages various grant programs, ranging from charter schools to dropout prevention, and coordinates the public school choice and supplemental education services that are provided under the No Child Left Behind Act. In managing these grant programs and implementing new educational reforms, OII attempts to improve student achievement, increase parental awareness, and prepare the educational system, both technologically and instructionally, for more advanced learning.

What it does: The Office of Innovation and Improvement was created in order to help manage the spending of money created by the No Child Left Behind Act. In addition, the OII decides how to distribute the funds of its 28 grant programs (see below). When distributing these funds, their main goal is to improve student achievement, increase parental awareness, and keep the education system up to date. The OII is also responsible for administering earmarks, which are funds allocated by Congress to be spent on predetermined projects.

Here is a little list of the Earmark funds governed by OII:

Here is the REAL clincher, Bill Gates is driving the bus: 

James H. Shelton III has served as assistant deputy secretary for innovation and improvement since April 2009, putting him in charge of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement. In this position, he oversees the $650 million Investing in Innovation Fund. President Barack Obama pledged to prohibit government employees from doing business with former employers.

However, Shelton was granted a waiver to deal with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, for which he worked for more than five years prior to joining the Obama administration.

Connecting the dots, more about Shelton= MORE ABOUT GATES:

“Prior to joining the Obama administration, he spent more than five years (2003-2009) as a program director for the education division of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, managing the foundation’s national programs and work in the northeast region of the United States. Among the programs he oversaw were Next Generation Models, School Replication, and College Access and Scholarships.”

In other words, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet  CONTROL $650 million in earmarks for the Department of Education! 

This kind of history and political pressure from the top has extended an extremely long line of credit to Bill Gates in setting federal and state education policies.

Bottom Up Pressure:

I haven’t written about this yet, but I am not alone in the outrage created by the testing policies of No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top.  The Common Core Standards are another Gates promotion, spawned by yet another unholy alliance with Pearson Publishing Company.  The grand scheme includes federalized common core curriculum complete with a new battery of high-stakes testing created by the dastardly duo.

Take a very deep breath for a moment, sit down, try to remain calm, and think:

What will the profit be if the great Gates/Pearson merger is the monopoly provider for 1.5 million schools, and 52 million school age children if they are all required to have the SAME text books and the SAME standardized tests published and administered by these Philanthro-PIRATES? 

NOW GET OUTRAGED!!!  Because it does not stop here!  The same systematic prescriptive scripted curriculum will be in every classroom across the country as if we all are ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL!!!!

I could go on and on to tell you, as a special education teacher and a person who served on a Gifted Focus Committee for 3 1/2 years as a researcher and advocate for these children who are also exceptional – as in needing specially designed instruction!

I could go on and on to tell you all about how the  highest  level thinking with Bloom’s Taxonomy is CREATE and yet this canned, scripted curriculum with it’s battery of bubble-test-mania will have nothing to do with creating, analyzing, or relevant problem solving.

I could go on and on to tell you about how this same canned one-size-fits-all curriculum does nothing to benefit the child who came from a refugee camp in Somalia, or the 12 English Language Learners who entered my classroom last year, or the 5 children on Individualized Educational Programs, or the 3 gifted children that were all in my classroom together last year!

I could go on and on to tell you that project based inquiry learning that is relevant to the child who just came from Mexico needs to be relevant to THEM and may not be relevant at all to the child in Alaska!  But Bill Gates thinks that we need the SAME textbooks for the child in New York AND the child in Texas because there is only ONE way to teach a child to multiply!!!!

I could go on and on to tell you that Bill Gates is a computer nerd, but he is NOT a teacher and has NO background knowledge whatsoever in the very highly specialized PROFESSIONAL field of education that he has become a CZAR over through simply getting rich!!!

I could go on and on to tell you that these canned curriculum are leaving out the joy of learning and teaching.  The narrow emphasis of teaching to these tests with 2 hours spent each day in reading and math alone are beginning to shave parts off of our whole children that we, as teachers and parents value. They are not learning about music, art, PE, sports, social skills, vocational technical skills, geography, history, science, social studies, foreign language….. the list goes on and on.

But that long list does not include the “Bottom Up”  parts that I am most concerned about.

WHAT I CAN TELL YOU IS THIS: This canned narrow curriculum are shaving a VERY important part off of children that will impact our whole society!  These children are not learning how to solve real world problems. They are not learning how a democratic society works, nor how to become an active member in this society in order to vote their conscience! Instead they are being taught how to be drones to tyrannical authoritarian powers!

This is the real danger facing our children and our future as a society as Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, are squeezing us until we all cry Uncle!


Squeezed From All Sides: 

When I wrote about the advocacy groups that the Gates Foundation is bankrolling, I hadn’t researched all the connections to him driving the DOE.  I had a strong intuition or inference drawn, but had not had any real proof, nor clear understanding that connected all the dots before today.   Now, it only makes MORE sense.  I’ve already outlined the way the pressure is controlling our futures from the bottom up.  Now, I’ll discuss my analysis of how his influence is squeezing us from all sides.

By using his Philanthropy badge, Gates attracts parents, do-gooders, and organizations that want us to improve our schools.  It is a noble cause, indeed.  But as these so-called advocacy groups hear speeches about civil rights, education for ALL children, choice for parents so poor children can go to any school and not just their neighborhood ‘poor’ school, more and more people get sucked in to the vacuum of truth.

I already spelled out how these charter schools are causing communities to dissolve, how they are re-segregating our children by race, ability, and class.  They are dividing our children from their neighborhood friends.  They are dividing families from interacting with one another as they used to do at after-school functions and school celebrations.  They are dividing our children from experiencing the perception of others who are not in the same race, class, or ability brackets.  The good intentions of choice are sold hook, line, and sinker to many a ‘school advocacy group’.  In a new scathing report on charter schools,  The Louisiana School Board writes:

“However, a funny thing happened along the way.  Free-market zealots (with riches) realized that over $600 billion is spent in the U.S. on public schools.  A whole new frontier leading to stable profits was recognized.  Everyone knows “it takes money to make money,� and the faces behind the voucher/charter “reform� movement are not bashful in stepping up to the bar.”

Recently, Gates teamed up with Murdoch, as I wrote about earlier.  Here’s part of the Louisiana School Board’s reporting on Murdoch:

“Rupert Murdoch, chairman and CEO of News Corp, is also into education reform.  He paid $350 million for Wireless Generation, a Brooklyn�based education reform company.  Murdoch is quoted as follows:  “When it comes to k-12 education, we see a $500 billion sector in the U.S. alone that is waiting desperately to be transformed by big breakthroughs that extend the reach of great teaching.�(Idaho Statesman.com-Dan Popkey- 2/20/2011)”

This is what the Louisiana School Board has to say about Gates:

“Foundations such as Gates , Walton and Broad benefit from their status as non-profits that are IRS allowed deductions from income and thus are essentially subsidized by U.S. taxpayers.  But, they are allowed to leverage their investment in untaxed funds and also evade accountability for the failure of their programs.  Gates� small school movement costs local districts significantly and have failed to show any real advantages.  His foundation has abandoned the movement after spending $2 billion over eight years.  The Washington Post reports that Gates has spent about $650 million on education reform, mostly on teacher evaluation and performance pay.

DIVIDE AND CONQUER, ATTACKING EACH OTHER FROM ALL SIDES:

Gates’ strategic bankrolling is also dividing families along belief, politics, and public sector vs. private sector lines.  They are dividing families by pitting one advocacy group against another – Parents Across America against Stand for Children and Students 1st.  PTA against teacher unions and so called ‘status quo’.  Parents against unions.  Families against experienced teachers.  Professional teachers against Teach for America Teacher-wanna-bees.  New teachers against experienced teachers.  Segregated groups against other segregated groups.  The divisiveness works in their favor.  Divide and conquer.

Remember their agenda:

  1. Profit
  2. Re-Segregation by class and color/race
  3. Disestablishmentarianism: Tearing down the great wall between church and state
  4. Reducing civic critical thinking skills to ‘dumb down democracy’
  5. Tyranny over education policy
  6. Extraction of local control

“No Child Left Behind is a declaration of war!”, to quote Steven Strauss who wrote “The Class Lessons of No Child Left Behind”. Now we know who the main  elite enemy is, the one who is REALLY driving the BUS at the Department of Education!

But Race To the Top is no better,  even worse! Attaching Gate’s Common Core tests coming down the pipeline to teacher evaluations without solving any of the poverty problems will pit everyone against one another even more!  In light of the recent testing scandals, you can only imagine what Murdoch will do to education!

Now fight this war for the very fabric of America with everything you’ve got! Fight the top, fight FOR the bottom, and find a way to unite the sides by spreading the truth!  We are many!  They are few!



Gates and The Zombie Elites, Devouring Equity and Integration

My last posts tied the Charter Schools of Louisiana and across the country, whether they be private, public, or foundation funded, voucher funded, etc. to the re-segregation of America’s schools. 

While at the Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action on July 28-30, 2011, I spoke with 100’s of teachers, parents, administrators, school board members, and education leaders across the nation.  They all said the same thing about Washington State: 

 “At least Washington State has escaped

the whole ‘Charter School’ thing!”

Well, I’ve got news for you Washington State and the rest of you states who have narrowly escaped  RTTT bribes and the charter school take-over to date.  The Gates Foundation is about to change the landscape of education here unless we stop them!

Yesterday, the news was out in the Seattle TimesGates Foundation pours funds into educational advocacy groups…by Linda Shaw.  Doesn’t that headline sound benign, one intended to give you all a warm fuzzy feeling?  Doesn’t that headline paint the big picture: Bill and Melinda Gates standing on the pedestal accepting  the Nobel Prize and accolades of credit from children, parents, and teachers across the country?  Nothing could be further from the truth! 

Dig into Shaw’s article a little deeper and she will hint at the truth, but why is the man behind the curtain not completely unmasked here in Seattle as we in Washington state become the great experiment  in the Gates Foundation’s petri dish of horrors?

 

I would argue that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have become their own “A.L.E.C.” – but that will be a topic for another blog.  For now, let’s look at how yesterday’s news creates the beginning of the end for integration in Washington State and across the country.

“The Seattle-based foundation is a powerful player in public education.  It underwrites groups pushing to change, bankrolls projects and helps out-of-state organizations establish themselves here.”

The foundations and organizations that the Gates Foundation is promoting this time are three:  The League of Education Voters, the Partnership for Learning, and Stand for Children.  Let’s look at these three players to see what they are REALLY promoting for education.

The League of Education Voters:  Who are they?  What do they stand for?

“The League of Education Voters works to create an educational system in which every student has an equal and adequate opportunity to succeed in college, work, and in life….

Citizen-founded and citizen-funded, LEV is the only Washington-based organization working to improve education from early learning through higher education….

Sounds like a grass-roots organization on the surface, but now the Gates Foundation is bankrolling them.  Why is this important?  Because now that Gates is bankrolling them, suddenly a question appears on their website: Beginning the Conversation About Public Charter Schools.

Partnership for LearningFirst of all, let’s look at their board.  See any educators? Again, we have corporations working to set education policy without any background on what good education consists of for the very people who are the stakeholders.  Here you can see that this organization has a key initiative to promote Obama’s Race to the Top #3.  Race to the Top funding is only provided to states that buy into Charter Schools.  Here is Partnership for Learning’s Mission Statement:

“Our goal is for Washington state to lead the nation with an education system that prepares all students to succeed in college and work and fosters our state’s economic competitiveness. Partnership for Learning (PFL) is focused on ensuring all students graduate from high school ready for college and work and doubling the number of low-income students who earn post secondary degrees or certificates.” ~  Partnership for Learning, Mission Statement, Dateline: January 11, 2010, 1:50 pm

Again, this organization sounds benign and all about equity, doesn’t it?  And of course, somehow magically this language is about to appear in Arne Duncan and Obama’s new and improved Race to the Top #3!   Dig a little deeper and in their brochure they are promoting public charter schools:

“Supporting the expansion of high-performing public charter schools…”, see top left of page 4 of Partnership for Learning Brochure

 

Finally, Stand for Children,  is the other bankrolled ‘education advocacy group’ Gates is funding .  What a lovely movie in your mind the very propaganda of their name promotes!  Anyone would want to get behind this cause NOW, wouldn’t they?

Stand for Children is really Stand for Corporations in disguise! 

 

Stand for Children is a Union-busting Thug! That will be another topic for another day…

TeacherKen, author of The Daily Kos, shares a now widely circulated video showing Stand for Children’s connection to A.L.E.C., the American Legislative Exchange Council.  This secret society of corporations  forms legislation, votes on it, then presents it in multiples to prevent their opponents from blocking all of it at once, insuring some of their bills survive and pass.   Does that tie the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to this organization now?  I think Bill Gates is his own A.L.E.C., myself!

This “advocacy group”  has been worming their way into school boards across Washington state, even going so far as to demand being part of collective bargaining to stand BETWEEN districts and teacher unions, as if they have such a right!  Just so you know, Stand for Children is also part of Policy Innovators in Education [PIE] and Excellent Schools Now [ESN]. I draw these connections as I want you all to BEWARE of these links to Stand, as they call themselves.  Here’s a little bit from Stand’s website:

“Stand for Children is an innovative, citizen-led advocacy organization of parents, educators and concerned citizens committed to improving schools for all 1 million k-12 students in Washington”.

Translation:  We accept mega corporations bank rolls to push through legislation, lobbying with unlimited funds until we get what we want.  Here is what they say on their one page document:

“Generous financial support comes from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Seattle Foundation, many individual donors including Connie Ballmer, Judy Bigelow, Judy Bushnell, Bill Clapp, David Nierenberg as well as dues from our 400 members.”

 

WaKIDS Funded by Stand for Children’s advocacy:

Translation: WaKids is a program that again, on the face of it sounds good.  It has been bankrolled by Bill Gates that comes with a price: Pre-K and kindergarten standardized testing at the beginning of the year when it is critical to form relationships and establish routines with the children in the teacher’s class.  Teachers in many districts are piloting this program, being asked to do home visits of 1 hour each per student with no extra monetary compensation.

“We fearlessly challenge the status quo in pursuit of solutions that help children thrive.”

Translation:  Union Busting , Charter Schools, and more standardized testing tied to teacher evaluations.  Stand for Children has attempted to force themselves into bargaining against teachers’ unions in the Bellevue School District.  Fortunately, they failedThis was not Stand’s first attempt at Union busting.  In Fred Klonsky’s blog in February 2011, he wrote:

“In Illinois the IEA leadership, in the face of the assault by Stand for Children and other anti-union political action groups, has said we must draw the line on retaining the right to strike. They have proposed a counter proposal that has conceded on everything else, from tenure and seniority to teacher evaluation.” ~ Fred Klonsky

Dwayne Truss wrote in April, 2011 on his blog, Austin Talks about the stealth work being done by Stand for Children:

“Before I go further, please understand that I am a Kool-Aid drinking supporter of unions, but those that know me know that I will support policies and legislation that makes sense for educating African-American children, unions be damned; however, billionaires and corporations are again vilifying unions through its’ front organization, Stand for Children.”

Stand for Children again claims to work for equity for ALL students, including minorities in the cause for civil rights as you can see in their statement below:

“Ensuring equity of opportunity for all children is a tremendous challenge. Even states that provide excellent public education suffer from unacceptable achievement gaps between white and minority students. Providing equal opportunity for all children is today’s civil rights struggle, a moral imperative we cannot and will not ignore.

On June 1, 1996, 300,000 citizens came to Washington, D.C., for Stand for Children Day, the largest rally for children in U.S. history. Mrs. Rosa Parks, civil rights movement icon, made a statement that challenged the nation to commit themselves to improving the lives of children, saying, “If I can sit down for justice, you can stand up for children.”

 Makes it sound GREAT, doesn’t it? 

Translation: Their agenda is Charter Schools and once again, we are going right back to the problem.  Charter Schools are acting as agents to re-segregate America’s schools by race and class.  The model written and dreamed about by Milton Friedman is growing at an exponentially alarming rate across our country. 

“Stand for Children will support the expansion of high-performing charter schools, greater opportunities to share best practices between different successful school models, and emerging collaborative models of school districts and high-performing charter schools and charter school management organizations.” ~ Stand for Children 2011 Legislative Summary

 Seems unbelievable, almost surreal, doesn’t it?  No, it could never happen in such a traditionally democratic state where special education was spawned by 2 parent advocates for their children….could it?  Well take a long look into the future folks because here is lies the next Louisiana.  Substance News reported today about this exact subject in their report:

Our Gated Schools: New Orleans is the only city in the nation where neighborhood children do not have a right to attend any of their open-enrollment neighborhood schools

“What is so unfortunate for the children and parents is that the charter school model was sold to them as an inclusive entity, when in reality it is an exclusive entity that selects students just like magnet schools or any other private selective admission school. As a result of the BESE board decision, charter schools have become “Gated Public Schools” for thousands of children.” ~ Raynard Sanders, Ed.D.

These are dangerous times and the zombie elites and faux-do-gooders are feeding off the flesh of humanity.  The soft-warm-fuzzy-feel-good language of the Gates Foundation, the Friedman Foundation, and these 3 ‘education advocacy groups’ that hide their corporate claws behind a title called ‘grass roots’ is dangerous to the very fiber of our democracy and civil rights earned by blood in our country! 

Do not be fooled by the Zombie Elites and grave-diggers of modern times, for once they devour the public sector,  they quickly dig the graves for equity, ending integration by class and race all over our land.