Shultz, Sharpton, and Hayes dissed Matthews. So What?

Watch and judge for your self.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/08/30/shock_chris_matthews_vs_msnbc_hosts_on_education_teachers_unions.html

Is this evidence that MSNBC is starting to “get it” that edreform is really a disguise for dismantling American public schools?  Or is this just evidence that Chris Matthews is a clueless hack?

I ask these questions because so far, all I have seen are comments celebrating the birth of a new era in media coverage of edreform.  However, other than challenging Matthews on his stupid idol worship of Michelle Rhee and some criticizing of “Right Wing” attempts to privatize some public schools: Do Sharpton, Shultz, and Hayes really deserve credit for bravely pointing out the obvious?  It’s no freakin revelation that market based reforms are favored by Republicans and anybody watching MSNBC is already well aware of that fact.

But what about President Obama?  What about Arnie Duncan?  What about Rahm Emanuel?  What about Andrew Cuomo?  What about Democrats for Education Reform?

When are any in the media (especially MSNBC) going to show some courage and expose the full frontal assault on public education for what it really is–a BIPARTISAN BILTZKRIEG to raid local school districts’ budgets and redirect taxpayer money towards private interests. When are we going to see classrooms filled with 40 kindergartners and overworked teachers trying to teach in an environment lacking basic necessities for learning? When are we going to see KIPP style schools that engage in radical behavior management techniques training poor and minority kids for a life in the criminal justice system?

When is Sharpton, Hayes, and Shultz going to visit the schools the corporate reformers send their kids to receive an education? When will they show us the small class sizes preferred by the reformers for their family members?  When does the public get to see how little testing is done in the schools chosen by Obama? When will one of them simply ask the question, “If large class sizes, limited resources, the common core, and endless high stakes testing is so damn good, why do you choose to send your children to other schools?”

I’m sorry but until Sharpton, Hayes, and Shultz take it to ALL the corporate reformers (Democrats and Republicans) last night’s little tiff with Mr. Hardball was really just more evidence that the media either still doesn’t “get it” or it was an attempt to throw public education advocates (like us) a bone in hopes that they (we) might quiet down until after the election.

Ed, Al, and Chris, it’s going to take a lot more than a little televised tiff with Mr. Hardball to shut up those of us that are fighting to save public schools. And here’s a secret I’ll share with you.  There are a lot of us and we’re PISSED OFF!

Follow Timothy D. Slekar on Twitter: www.twitter.com/slekar

 

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Comments

  1. BTW – Cenk on Current TV and TYT has done some good work on the topic. Their is hope.

  2. I wish they got it. I wish they all recognized what an insidious attack has been visited upon teachers, teachers unions, public schools, and children of color; by charters, corporations,Rhee, Klein and hedge-fund managers. But as an old public policy teacher at my old alma mater, Rutgers said: “change is incremental…take what you can get and come back for more”. I wish it were more and I wish they would take a serious and in depth look at the alleged ‘reform’. Rachel would be phenomenal. Michael Moore has begged off saying, ” it’s a complicated issue”. (sure thing Mike) Perhaps soon. But I do have to give them credit. They are raising awareness and for one of the biggest educational pimps around, ‘Education Nation’, perhaps they’re seeing the light or they see a story that can be milked for more than a few news cycles.

  3. peggyrobertson says:

    As a teacher I am done being grateful when someone throws me a bone. It was a bone – nothing more. I remember sitting in faculty meetings where they would reward teachers with candy bars for the good deeds they had accomplished that week. Everybody applauded when someone got a snickers bar. I doubt that Mayor Bloomberg would sit through such a humiliating experience and be grateful for the snickers bar he received as though this somehow compensates for the teacher bashing and destruction of public education while those around us – those in mainstream media who profess to be progressive – are silent on these issues. I can tell you what I’d like to do with that snicker bar but I’ll leave it at that.

  4. As a teacher I am done being grateful when someone throws me a bone. It was a bone – nothing more. I remember sitting in faculty meetings where they would reward teachers with candy bars for the good deeds they had accomplished that week. Everybody applauded when someone got a snickers bar. I doubt that Mayor Bloomberg would sit through such a humiliating experience and be grateful for the snickers bar he received as though this somehow compensates for the teacher bashing and destruction of public education while those around us – those in mainstream media who profess to be progressive – are silent on these issues. I can tell you what I’d like to do with that snicker bar but I’ll leave it at that.

  5. ressysmith10 says:

    It was good to see Chris Matthews put in check; however mainstream media needs to do more in inviting and broadcasting the truths that need to be shared by educators, students, their parents, and credible researchers about the last twelve years of education reform and the damage it has imparted. Until that happens, simple debates, as in the broadcast above, are not enough.

  6. I think too many though of course not all , but too many who can capture a broad national audience are afraid to “offend” others who have power …. If we actually used the facts and truth to generate a public national dialogue instead of crafting spin or sidling around the real yet thorny truths then maybe we could turn the tides! Many of us try to do this yet we ( speaking for myself) don’t have that kind of audience and those that do must face themselves and the moral dilemma between offending those people with whom they wish to curry favor or offending millions of children who are the real victims in this and who have no power of recourse against offending parties…. Maybe that’s why it’s “easier” to skirt the effort to speak truth to power – because they ( children) have less power over those whose responsibility it should be to speak on THEIR behalf
    If national “big” voices were in fact doing this to level at which they are capable we would not be losing so much ground to the deformers

  7. Tim,
    I think you are being a bit harsh here. Chris Hayes has written a very interesting book that takes on the ideology behind modern education reform — it is worth reading: “Twilight of the Elites, America after the Meritocracy.” http://www.amazon.com/Twilight-Elites-America-after-Meritocracy/dp/0307720454 He has spoken pretty forcefully about these issues, as has Ed Schultz. Rachel Maddow tends to get caught up in a sort of binary view, where everything bad must be the fault of the Republicans. But I think Chris Hayes, especially, is sharper than that.

    • Anthony,
      This is not about whether Chris Hayes is sharp personally and intellectually (He has demonstrated through his book and his show that he is very capable and “gets it.”) Ed Shultz has also shown some support to public schools. But he only goes to the point of calling it an attack by right wingers. Great. But not revealing who all the players are and refusing to showcase the true damage being done is unacceptable. They are the media. The media’s job is to inform. You do it weekly. Diane Ravitch does it multiple times every day of the week. Just because they are constrained by their executives does not mean that we should not point out problems with the media’s lack of reporting during the attack on our public schools. I never once claimed that Ed and Chris aren’t intelligent and very capable. In fact it is because of their intelligence and their capability that we all should be putting tremendous pressure on them (and others) to tell this story. And, I think it is particularly our (educators/activists) responsibility to shine the light wherever there is darkness. In case you’ve forgotten my own children are living through this nightmare daily. I’m not doing this because I find it rewarding. I’m doing it because I’m a father and an educator that wants the public schools given back to teachers and communities so my children (and others) can learn to change the world.

    • Chris Matthews has done a good job lately challenging some of the nonsense coming out of the RNC, especially his takedown of Rance Priebus on Morning Joe. That was very nice to see. I think one central problem here is the proximity to power that all of these pundits find themselves. All of our media is what, owned by five companies now, something like that? Maddow et al. were pulled out of obscurity and they are now the fresh faces of a new political movement. Perhaps the faces of the Democratic party and certainly of modern progressivism. But these folks work for MSNBC, which is then owned by GE. And GE is beholden to shareholders and the like. It’s all connected. So, they can and do push some very limited boundaries, but there’s only so far they can go.

      Like many folks, they’re interested in keeping their jobs. They like being noticed, probably like signing autographs, enjoy speaking events, and so forth. They probably lead interesting lives. And that proximity to power and influence is likely very intoxicating. That intoxication therefore limits how far they might go with certain issues. It’s clear that the major networks don’t want to come close to touching most of the education issues we discuss here.

      I’m not holding my breath. By the way, Anthony, you seem to have gotten the attentions of the Gates Foundation. Nice conversation. How’d that work out anyway? I just don’t think you can talk to these people. The time for talk is over.

Trackbacks

  1. kuhiokane says:

    [...] on the planet as if it were his own toy land. (Kudos to S.DuFresne, I think). Then I re-read Tim Slekar ‘s FB piece on how we must push back into the faces of the Melissa Harris-Perrys, Chris Matthews, Ed [...]

  2. [...] on the planet as if it were his own toy land. (Kudos to S.DuFresne, I think). Then I re-read Tim Slekar ‘s FB piece on how we must push back into the faces of the Melissa Harris-Perrys, Chris Matthews, Ed [...]

  3. [...] attack on the planet as if it were his own toy land. (Kudos to S.DuFresne, I think). Then I re-read Tim Slekar ‘s FB piece on how we must push back into the faces of the Melissa Harris-Perrys, Chris Matthews, Ed [...]

  4. [...] week I caught some flack for criticizing certain hosts on MSNBC for failing to cover the dismantling of public schools honestly. How about now?  Hey Ed, Chris, and Al, Melissa, Lawrence, Rachel was,”Hey Ho, Hey Ho, Rahm [...]

  5. [...] week I caught some flack for criticizing certain hosts on MSNBC for failing to cover the dismantling of public schools honestly. How about now?  Hey Ed, Chris, and Al, Melissa, Lawrence, Rachel was,”Hey Ho, Hey Ho, Rahm [...]

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