Sex, Lies and Common Core

I am working on another post related to the opposition of Common Core…but decided to put it aside after I got the email embedded below on Monday.

Common Core should be a boon to education in this country. It will set some standards on student achievement that make sense for math and English…the only two subjects currently involved. The State of Wisconsin decided to adopt Common Core some years ago without any fanfare or backlash. But recently it has garnered a lot of attention from the far right and the tea party and I am not quite sure why.

But let me preface this next bit with a few high level attributes about Common Core. It is NOT a federal program…it was developed by a consortium of the states. It is NOT mandated in anyway…the states can choose to adopt them if they so desire. The only input from the Feds is they will accept Common Core principles and achievement testing as part of the Race to the Top federal education initiative. Common Core does NOT prescribe any particular curriculum or text book or teaching method. That is all left up to the local school districts…the nonsense about loss of local control is in fact utter nonsense.

So…now we come to the email that I received on Monday evening. It is pure disgusting vile lies about the Common Core initiative. The discussion is so heinous that I find it hard to believe that anyone even can take this seriously. Yet there it is in living color. Now you can see why there are people so vehemently opposed to Common Core…I would be too if any of this were even remotely close to accurate. Yet people are sharing this back and forth and taking it as fact…where do we stop this crap? Why has common sense become such a rare commodity? My goodness…

Now, I never have ever listened to Vicki McKenna who is prominently quoted in this email. I don’t know if this is even realistic for her show. I don’t know if she actually said any of these things. But if she did, I can’t imagine that anyone listening can take this for fact and not think it’s a parody of tea party philosophy.

Well, I couldn’t believe that lies this blatant would even be considered fit for any media…talk radio included. So I reached out the program director at WISN for comment…and have not had any response. If I do get a response I will update this post.

But here is the email…yes from someone I know. When I paste it here it will lose the formatting…so I will let you know that the font and font size vary through out…as if cut and pasted from more than one source plus additional commentary from the sender. I have not corrected any grammar or spelling nor have I waded into it to append the appropriate (sic):

Catch any of the Vicki McKenna talk radio show on Friday if you live near Milwaukee? She got her hands on some

of the Common Core curriculum and text books that will be used in WI schools if the legislature

agrees to implement the federally run program which essentially turns the state’s education system over

to fed control. Core supporters say it’s the only way to guarantee that all education is the same for everyone

across the country.

One of the reading exercises contained in the curriculum for fourth graders (10 year olds) instructs kids that they should learn how to masturbate if they don’t already know how saying it’s good for them and even if their religious beliefs say that it’s sinful …. pay no attention to that …. much better you should masturbate than get pregnant or get a veneral disease. The lesson plan is complete with handouts of pictures (not sure if they’re photos or drawings) and closeups of 10-year-old boys and girls’ genitals pointing out the most sensitive spots along with very explicit how-to instructions. The descriptions are so vivid that McKenna could not read them on the air and had to paraphrase what was said or she would have been in violation of FCC rules.

Let’s see: you can’t read this to a bunch of adults listening to the radio without being in violation of the law but perfectly fine for 10 year olds to read. And if you think this is just for public schools ….. think again ….. it applies to all education …. public, private, parochial and even home schoolers would be required to present these lesson plans…. thus the name Common Core.

What a country …..a kid can’t bring an asprin to school, point his finger at someone like it was a gun, would be labeled a sexual predator for the rest of their lives if he or she innocently kissed someone in his or her class …… But, hey, go ahead and masturbate. Surprised they don’t have a “hands-on” lab so the kids can try out their newly learned skills. Know anyone with young children …. you may want to pass it along before it’s too late and this garbage is implemented in Wis. Going national, too, so it’s not just here. Also teaching the kids that the Presidency is the most important branch of the government.

Very heated debate going on in the state legislature as we speak. All part of the plan ….. once you’ve got control of the kids, you own the culture. Parochial schools and home schoolers were standing in the way of making that happen ….. so now we take away all other options and force the curriculum down the throats of mostly unaware citizens. But you won’t be reading about any of this in the local lefty paper or see any stories on TV news.

Not the fourth grade I remember.

There is room in this country and certainly in this state for a serious discussion on education. We have not done a very good job on this front in recent memory. But this kind of blatant ignorant diatribe with absolutely no basis in fact has to stop. And stop now!

Right-wing radio host Vicki McKenna flies off deep end on Twitter

Maybe it’s just me, but right-wing radio show host Vicki McKenna (@vickimckenna) seems to be an angry person.

After all, McKenna sent out a tweet earlier today thanking God that Wisconsin has the Castle Doctrine “so when leftists send stalkers to conservative womens’ houses we can SHOOT THEM.” I’ve included McKenna’s tweet below, but as you read McKenna’s tweet, keep in mind this is the same woman who was once arrested by UW-Madison police after becoming “verbally and physically combative” with officers.

See for yourselves:

Part of me wondered if McKenna’s tweet was a “drunk tweet,” but McKenna followed up her original tweet with a series of equally “interesting” tweets, so it’s pretty clear she meant what she wrote.

John Nichols on WTDY firings: Wisconsin progressivism deserves an outlet

Once again John Nichols nails it.

Sure, Sly often extended his remarks from “comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable” to flat-out condemning crony capitalists and crooked candidates. Everyone who listened to Sly took offense at one time or another.

Every guest (including this writer) disagreed with him sometimes. But Wisconsinites recognized that Sly’s anger was motivated by a rage at injustice and dishonesty. And they loved him for that, giving his show solid ratings and a loyal listenership that advertisers craved.

When those listeners tuned in the morning after Thanksgiving, however, they did not hear Sly raging against Walmart and demanding that Wisconsinites “buy local on Black Friday.” Station management pulled the plug on Sly and the news department. In so doing, they created a serious information void.

Hopefully this void will be filled by the reappearance of Sly’s morning show on another, more wisely managed station. The Wisconsin progressive populist tradition remains vibrant and popular, as the Nov. 6 election results remind us. It should continue to have a bold radio voice shouting “Hello Wisconsin” every morning.

For the record, I’ve not always seen eye-to-eye with Sly (his comments on Lt. Gov. Kleefisch and his support of Kathleen Falk in the gubernatorial recall as just two examples), but I absolutely believe there needs to be more balance on Wisconsin’s airwaves, which are dominated by right-wing extremists like Vicki “wolf on back, snake on chest” McKenna, Mark “racial slurs” Belling, and Charlie “family values” Sykes.

An Open Letter to Christopher Mertes

Cross Posted @ Forwardlookout:

Christopher Mertes, managing editor and far right wing idealogue, of the Sun Prairie Star, recently wrote one of the most ridiculous editorials I have seen this side of Christian Schneider. In his editorial, Mertes accuses democrats of hate speech, based on a few different facebook pages and comments.

In mid-November, the Federal Bureau of Investigation released its annual report on Hate Crimes. The FBI defines a hate crime as a crime in which an element of bias is expressed against the victim — whether it is race, religion, sexual orientation, national origin or disability.

What about political preference?

Is it not illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of their political preference? Judicial scholars many disagree, but the human resources folks tell us it is off limits to discuss political beliefs with potential hirees.

So if it is a violation of federal law to discriminate against someone on the basis of political preference, is it not a hate crime to spew hateful language against someone because of their political preference? The FBI is mute on the subject in terms of their 2010 Hate Crime Statistics, which list race as the top motivator in the majority of single-factor hate crimes.

Ok. Thats a huge stretch but I will bite, if discriminating against people based on political beliefs is hate speech, then Mr. Mertes I have the granddaddy of them all here:(emphasis mine)

Fake David Koch: Now, you’re not talking to any of them Democrat bastards are you?
Republican Scott Walker: There’s one guy that’s actually voted with me on a bunch of things that I called on Saturday for about 45 minutes mainly to tell him that while I appreciate his friendship, and his work with us on other things and tell him well, I wasn’t going to budge. Mainly, because he’s about the only reasonable one over there.

It all starts at the top and when the Governor discriminates against everyone who disagrees with him, how can the rest of the state be expected to act? But wait there is more:

Why is it not acceptable to utter the n-word but just as acceptable to hate someone because he or she has different political beliefs than you?

Witness “Scott Walker is a Douchebag,” the Facebook site “liked” by 35,211 “fans” and Facebook pages that include “Dear Republicans, F— you”; “Union Thugs in America” and “Paul Ryan is a Douchebag.”

In discussing a female who appeared on a pro-Walker advertisement, the anti-Walker Facebook page states, “Here is the Walker BLOW! More students no resources, no class aides and with students that have autism, are not getting the education and special needs. Walker’s budget cuts to education…here is a blow of the TRUTH!”

Apologies to those easily offended, but when you see the type of enlightened folk spewing this kind of language everywhere — including Facebook — it makes you wonder — are we institutionalizing hate speech?

WOW. You are really comparing the history of violence and victimhood that African Americans have had to endure to what Republicans in Wisconsin are currently dealing with? I hesitate to even address this ridiculousness but I will. It is nice that you spent some time on facebook as “research” but maybe you should have taken another 5 minutes and you would have found the following: Operation Burn Notice(a true hate group in support of our Governor), Recall Walker Worker Infobase (where they keep tabs on recall volunteers), Run WI Democrats Run, etc… Silly pages on facebook does not prove anything, there is even a facebook page called “Hate it when people look at my ass & mistake me for Kim Kardashian”, I wonder if that will be the subject of Mertes next editorial?

Apologies to those easily offended, but when you see the type of enlightened folk spewing this kind of language everywhere — including Facebook — it makes you wonder — are we institutionalizing hate speech?

What about the Facebook stalkings of the Walker children? Are there no limits?

I am with you Mr. Mertes, I was appalled when the Maciver Institute outed the Governor's children. They have no shame though, so it is not surprising.

We live in a world where people believe they can demonstrate without boundaries to free speech in an effort to constantly demean the duly elected governor of this state, and where doctors who took an oath to heal the sick can get away with a simple slap on the wrist for fabricating sick notes for teachers and state workers instead of being disciplined for abusing their authority.

Yes that is a newspaperman advocating for limits to free speech. Yes that is also Ben Franklin and the rest of our Founders rolling over in their graves.

Certainly if the things being said about Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin were said about Hillary Clinton, there would be editorial after editorial about the lack of civility in politics today.

Think I’m kidding? What about the Facebook page “Michelle Bachmann Sucks” which has 1,418 likes while the “I Demand to See Michelle Bachmann’s High School Diploma” page has 3,061 likes?

Or the “Telling Sarah Palin She’s Full of Crap” Facebook page which has 142,386 likes while the “If Sarah Palin Becomes President in 2012, Then I Hope the World Ends” Facebook page which has 21,322 likes? Or the “Not Voting for Herman Cain” page which has 3,746 likes?

Reading some of the posts on these pages, you’d think Bachmann, Cain or Palin ran over their family pets.

Of course, they have done no such thing. The only thing Cain, Bachmann and Palin have done (besides exhibit some quirky behaviors) is threaten the idea of the Democrat status quo — that is, that women and minorities must be Democrats and tow the liberal party line to be elected, or they’ll be personally smeared and attacked until they have no desire to seek political office.

UGH! More facebook drivel, I guess Mr. Mertes was in the Peace Corps without any access to media during the Clinton years.

“She sounds like a screeching ex-wife.” –Rush Limbaugh(who has experience with ex wives), on Sen. Hillary Clinton.

“She lectures us on eating right while she has a large posterior herself.” F. James Sensenbrenner on First Lady Michelle Obama.

“How long do you think Sean Hannity’s show would last if four times in one sentence, he made a comment about, say, the president of the United States, and said that he looked like a skinny, ghetto crackhead? Which, by the way, you might want to say that Barack Obama does.” Frequent Fox Contributor and Republican activist Brent Bozell.

These are just some examples, the list is too long to continue.

Now comes the Big Brush off, the false equivalency, 15 word that Mr. Mertes can pretend makes for a fair essay:

Certainly there are plenty of other examples from the other side of the aisle, too.

Well certainly there are plenty of examples Mr. Mertes, and they are far more serious than someone starting a facebook page called “Paul Ryan is a Douchebag”(thanks for pointing me there by the way, I gladly joined. If you check this site you will join also) In case you missed the “plenty of examples’ let me help point the way:

Some of these egregious examples of Republican thuggery start here (with republican Governor Scott Walker discussing adding violence into the protests at the Capitol), to Scott Fitzgerald yelling at one of Mark Miller\'s female staffers so violently she felt the need to call the police for protection, to Justice David Prosser choking a fellow justice who dared disagree with him(FYI Mertes actually published an apology to David Prosser – sorry your hands were around Justice Bradley's throat). . There are also numerous other examples if Mr. Mertes would have done an extra few minutes of research, and all are incredibly worse than anything that he quoted. Lets also not forget Mr. Mertes, that one of your neighbors, Heather Dubois Bourenane, one of the local leaders of the recall movement, received a late night threatening phone call right out of The Sopranos. Surely you are not enough of a partisan hack that you would condone death threats on Sun Prairie residents just because they disagree with you politically.

The point is that hate speech turns into more hate speech. WIBA-AM’s Vicki McKenna recently had her Facebook page shut down because of complaints from people posting negative, demeaning comments on her page who said she was bullying them.

This Vicki Mckenna? The one who called firefighters cowards and threatens boycotts of anyone who does not carry water for Scott Walker? That Vicki Mckenna spews hate speech every day on her radio show and is a bully. Heck she was even banned from Cottage Grove.

When did elections turn into who gets to spew more demeaning complaints, and not about carrying out the wishes of the majority of voters who elect candidates to office?

Well Mr. Mertes if you have been following recent History, I would say it started HERE with Lee Atwater and carried through to THIS and Atwater protege Karl Rove. Do you sense a theme here? Much of this points back to how the republicans run their races to win, and the ends justify the means. No matter how egregious the means are. If you want a more recent and closer to home example, republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, was recently asked by Lori Compas, to stop lying about her and smearing her name, he flat out refused.

Certainly there will be canceled subscriptions as a result of this column — but it’s time to take the hate speech out of political discourse and get back into the arena of ideas.

It is time to take Hate Speech out of the political discourse. It is time for Scott Walker to take a leadership role and denounce it when it happens in support of him. You personally Mr. Mertes, could start by dropping the Kevin Binversie columns in your paper. In case people do not know, Kevin Binversie is a paid republican political consultant who is allowed column space in the Sun Prairie Star and has who advocated shooting recall petitioners and more recently said liberals are looking for someone who “would shoot their own children in the head to be Governor of Wisconsin.” Maybe Mr. Mertes could start by taking the hate speech out of his own paper.

I do not know how many people will cancel their subscriptions, but nice way to martyr yourself. I do know that your credibility was severely damaged with this blatantly partisan column and unless you are just auditioning for a job with WPRI, will be very hard to restore.


Jeff Simpson

Thugs Threaten Boycotts…

Earlier in the year, Earlier in the year, some union members in southeast Wisconsin suggested that if a business owner did not support the unions efforts in total it might lead to a boycott of their business.

Wow, did that make the right wing in our great state unhinged. The head in the sand conservative website:

Thugs. Goons. Bullies. Greenshirts. Purpleshirts. Brownshirts. Stormtroopers.

Every single one of those descriptions fits the members of the Left, from unhinged anarchists and moonbats like Jim Shankman and Katherine Windels to the thugs, goons and bullies from SEIU, AFL-CIO, AFSCME, the Teamsters and the Wisconsin Extortion Association Council, every one of them is straight out of 1930s Germany with their tactics and style of intimidation.

We had AFSCME thugs attempting racketeering and extortion on small businesses in Union Grove this week, threatening to shut down any business that declined to put a pro-AFSCME sign in its window.

Public employee Ann and Meade Althouse:

Alex said…

So Wisconsin officially becomes North Korea.
3/31/11 11:45 AM

(Ed. Note: While this is a comment on the story, I felt it fit with the attitude of the right wing perfectly and the story was so poorly written there was no pull quote to use).

Boots and Sabers called out Marty Beil(who had nothing to do with it).

THEN Marty Beil decides to disown this action. Whatever. If it had worked, he’d be singing its praises.

Even Senator Van Wanggaard was so upset wanted an investigation into these activities:

Wanggaard said he believes the threats may violate the Taft-Hartley Act and other state laws, according to a press release that he issued Thursday.

“These kinds of mob tactics are rightly forbidden under the law, and should be prosecuted,” Wanggaard said in the press release.

He sent letters requesting an investigation to Racine County District Attorney Michael Nieskes, U.S. Attorney James Santelle and Attorney General JB Van Hollen, Wanggaard’s press release stated.

WOW were they mad. Majorly outraged! Like who would believe that someone would threaten to boycotts businesses over political beliefs? Why do these thugs hate small business so much they want to see it driven from the state? why do…….wait whats this?

In response to this story about a bar fight involving the recalls, Vicki Mckenna tweets:

Vicki Mckenna
Vicki Mckenna
and now you know which bar to avoid in cudahy
16 Dec

Huh Vicki hates small business owners and is calling on her listeners to boycott this establishment say it aint so. Im crushed to see the hypocrisy from someone so whose very character embodies what the righties in this state are all about. This has to be an isolated incident right? Ummm no…our good friends over at the Boots took it up a notch even:

2) Power of the purse.

Just like the recall employees/volunteers, everyone who signs a recall petition is signing a public document. I’ll be looking at those names and making them public – especially for people in my neck of the woods. If you sign the petition and happen to own or run a local business, you can expect me to publicize that fact and decline to spend any more of my hard earned dollars with your establishment. After all, if you get your way I will need those dollars to pay my taxes

WOW so the right wing cheddarsphere will be watching every move you make if you dare sign a petition and engaged in democracy. If you are a local business then you better really watch out!

It is so confusing, boycotts are bad except when they are good but of course its not a boycott if you say its not a boycott even if you publicize the peoples names and business that signed the petition and make sure and tell everyone that you will not be spending money in their business despite the fact that it looks and sounds like a boycott but it is ok because those businesses disagree with you so they deserve to be boycotted but do not ever threaten the businesses that we agree with because that is brownshirts tactics……UGGGGHHH I see why the right wing in this state are so bitter and negative, trying to follow the logic of the right wing political pundits is enough to make anyones head explode.

Do they stand for anything? Is Wanggaard still up for investigation of this intimidation?