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OCTOBER 9,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT: 

VIRGINIA – OVERNIGHT:  The polls remain tight in the most important gubernatorial race this year.  Former Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe has been taking a beating recently on a number of issues, but still retains a small lead.  The election is November 2nd, less than a month away.  From Fox:    Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe is facing criticism for not completely rejecting an endorsement from a group that advocates defunding the police.  "Terry McAuliffe refuses to reject the endorsement he received from a radical ‘defund the police’ group, New Virginia Majority,"  McAuliffe’s Republican challenger, Glenn Youngkin, posted on Twitter along with a clip of McAuliffe from a recent television interview. "He said he's proud of it! Unbelievable."  In the clip, McAuliffe vehemently denies support for defunding the police and says that his record as Virginia’s governor from 2014 to 2018 is evidence of that.  McAuliffe was specifically pressed about a clip posted online showing the former governor saying he was "proud" to receive the endorsement from the New Virginia Majority. In the clip, McAuliffe also says that he opposes defunding the police but doesn't have to agree with everything groups that endorse him believe.  "Have I ever supported defund the police?" McAuliffe said in the clip played during the interview. "Are you out of your mind? I’ve invested in law enforcement – I just went through 25 minutes of telling you what I do for the police. Not defunded, I funded them!"  "Listen, the issue is when I was governor I had the lowest crime rate of any state in the United States of America," McAuliffe said in response to the clip. "I think that’s what your viewers are concerned about."  McAuliffe added that during his time as governor he made several moves to improve the lives of sheriffs in the commonwealth and received an award from them. The problem is that the McAuliffe of 2021 backs such leftist programs as Critical Race Theory, and is closely linked with President Biden.  So to accept the endorsement of a defund-the-cops group, and then deny he wants to defund them makes himself look two-faced, maybe three.  He may just pull out a victory, to our dismay, but only by a whisker, and with none of the momentum he had during his earlier terms as governor.

October 9, 2021       Permalink

 

HE IS BACK – OVERNIGHT:  Former President Trump held a mass rally in Iowa tonight, seen by most observers as a test of his popularity in that key state.  The betting seems to be that he will run again in 2024.  Please note that the 2024 presidential campaign will start about two years from now.  From Fox: 

DES MOINES, IOWA - Former President Trump took aim at the massive spending bill that President Biden and congressional Democrats are trying to pass into law, charging it's a "monstrosity" and "so dangerous for our country."

Trump's attacks on the multitrillion-dollar human infrastructure, social spending and climate change package came as he held a rally in Iowa on Saturday. It was the former president's first stop in the competitive Central Plains state since last year’s election.

Iowa is also the state whose caucuses have kicked off the presidential nomination calendar for the past half-century, and Trump's stop is sparking more speculation he'll make another White House run in 2024.

Iowa was once a key battleground state, but Trump comfortably won it during his 2016 and 2020 campaigns.

He arrived in the Hawkeye State days after scoring his best favorable ratings ever in the Des Moines Register poll, which is considered the gold standard in this neck of the woods.

Fifty-three percent of Iowans had a favorable view of the former president and 45% hold an unfavorable view, according to the Des Moines Register/Mediacom survey released Monday. And among Republicans only, he was at a sky high 91% favorability.

Trump touted the poll, saying "we’re at the highest we’ve ever been."

He also spotlighted his victory in Iowa last November, adding "you proved why Iowa should vote first in the nation."

The former president took a few jabs at a small group of GOP senators, led by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, for earlier this week allowing the majority Democrats to temporarily lift the debt ceiling, which prevented the nation from defaulting.

"To think that we had 11 Republicans go along with an extension, headed up by Mitch McConnell," Trump said, eliciting boos from the large crowd of supporters at the rally site at the Iowa State Fairgrounds.

Trump also repeatedly pilloried his successor in the White House for his handling of the rocky U.S. withdrawal and evacuation from Afghanistan. He also criticized Biden over the influx of migrants trying to cross the nation's southern border with Mexico, and over the surge in COVID cases as the highly infectious delta variant spread across the country.

COMMENT:  Obviously, for Trump to win the presidency again he will have to ride a wave of voter discontent with the Democrats.  That could well happen.  And he will have to be seen as a man who'd been a solid president, but with a flawed personality.  I don't think it will be easy for him.  The Democrats will throw everything they have at him, every gaffe, every unfortunate statement, every reminder of the characteristics that cost him the presidency in 2020.

It is ridiculous to predict.  A month is lifetime in politics, and there are many, many months until the 2024 presidential election.  Indeed, the Dems may even succeed in changing parts of the electoral system.  Kamala Harris might be president.  And American troops might be on Taiwan.

October 9,  2021     Permalink

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER 8,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT: 

THE MISSING ONE – FROM FOX:   Several top members of the Biden administration were in Mexico City on Friday for a meeting with Mexican officials regarding security along the U.S.-Mexico border. But Vice President Kamala Harris wasn't among them.  Harris, whom President Biden appointed in March to manage the U.S. response to the migrant crisis along the border, went to New Jersey instead.  Attending Friday's high-level talks in Mexico's capital were Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland.  Ken Salazar, a former U.S. senator from Colorado who now serves as the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, also attended.  "Today's High-Level Security Dialogue marks an important new phase in the US-Mexico security partnership," Mayorkas tweeted Friday. "We will work together under a new framework to guide our joint efforts, and work toward our shared goals of security and prosperity for our two nations."  Harris, meanwhile, traveled to the Garden State, visiting a daycare center at Montclair State University in Little Falls and a vaccination site at Essex County Community College in Newark to promote the Biden administration’s agenda.  The vice president last visited the border in June, spending several hours in El Paso, Texas, while on her way to her home in California. It’s the only time she’s been to the border since taking office.  Harris is a disgrace.  Not to attend that important conference demonstrates either massive incompetence or a desire to show disrespect for the entire border issue.  I suspect it's the latter.  Remember, the far left, which Harris must appease in order to survive, believes that the real border crisis is that we're admitting too few illegals.  Their goal is open borders.  Kammie will wink at them appropriately.

October 8, 2021       Permalink

 

ANOTHER BLOW AGAINST EXCELLENCE – OVERNIGHT:  The Democratic Party, and especially its left-wing fringe, is doing its best to inflict the greatest possible damage to American children before the elections of 2022.  Maybe they figure that they won't get this chance again.  But many parents are fighting back, perhaps dismayed that the left shows no concern for excellence in American education.  The latest blow is being struck in New York City, once an educational magnet.  From the New York Post: 

New York City parents ripped Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “extremely disappointing” and “abominable“ plan to ax the public school system’s Gifted and Talented program in his final months in office.

Public school parents in the five boroughs told The Post that the lame-duck mayor’s proposal, announced Friday, to phase out the coveted exclusive education model by next fall — after he leaves Gracie Mansion at the end of 2021– is the wrong call for students in the Department of Education system.

Charleen Ang, mother of a student at a third-grade Gifted and Talented program on the Upper West Side, has been attempting to get her first-grade son into one without success and lamented that he may not have the opportunity.

“Now, there is no path for our son to ever join his sister,” she fumed. “It is abominable that de Blasio is, in his final months in office, dismantling one of the few successful education programs in New York City, adversely impacting a swath of children.”

Parents called de Blasio’s plan “extremely disappointing” and “abominable.”

“I am really angry that the mayor who has been in charge of our education for the last eight years uses his last days as mayor to make this very radical change to our public education,” said Yiatin Chu, cofounder of education advocacy group PLACE NYC, whose oldest child attended a gifted and talented program.

“I think it’s ridiculous that the mayor is making such a change at the eleventh hour.”

The current Gifted and Talented program for New York City’s elementary schools was instituted under former Mayor Michael Bloomberg. It offers accelerated classes and specialized advanced curriculum for students who qualify.

The program controversially required that children be tested at 4-years-old for admission — and those who made it in were disproportionately white and Asian and from well off parts of the city. But some black and Latino local politicians backed the program, too, as it offered many families who they represent an alternative to frequently struggling district schools.

Under de Blasio’s plan, released Friday morning, current students in the G & T accelerated-learning classes will be able to remain in them until completion. But new cohorts will be completely eliminated by fall 2022, putting an end to the current system wherein 4-year-old city kids are tested.
Lisa Marks, a parent and public school teacher from Manhattan, told The Post she has one older child in an accelerated program in District 2 and was planning on having a younger sibling apply there, as well.

“It’s extremely disappointing,” said Marks, who teaches at a Bronx high school. “We were planning to apply, but now I have to tell my daughter that she won’t get the same opportunity. It’s not right.”
Max Dickstein, a Forest Hills resident, is the father of one kid in the Gifted and Talented program, and was readying for his sibling to apply for the same school next year.

The fate of the G&T program will ultimately be in the hands of the next mayor.

COMMENT:  I remember when the New York City school system was one of the gems of the city, and famous throughout the world.  It was considered an honor to be a New York City teacher.  But no longer.  The striving for excellence has given way to a striving for a socialist-oriented attempt at ethnic balance, even if it means stiflying the best students and automatically promoting the worst.

The world isn't buying what New York schools are selling.  And the real New York is fading into memory.

October 8, 2021       Permalink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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