Part 2—D.C. Public Schools Confidential: Long ago and far away, we had an award-winning punchline, one which brought pleasure to hundreds.
It came as part of a comedy "bit" in which we'd lightly parody the kind of "straight-talking" candidate the mainstream press corps pretended to love back in the 1990s.
We'd ask the audience to shout out some issue or point of concern. Ignoring whatever it was they shouted, we'd proceed to offer a string of pre-selected "simple, common-sense solutions to the nation's problems."
We'd solve the problems for which we had jokes. The award-winning punchline to which we refer went exactly like this:
"If we can't make Canada pay for our health care, what do we have an army for?"
Never mind the way we set that up! That was the punchline to which we refer. As experts have noted, it predated Trump's pledge to make Mexico pay for our wall by almost twenty years!
We've been thinking about that punchline in response to a recent news report. We picture an updated bromide:
"If we don't have plenty of people to waste, what do we have a huge continental nation for?"
We picture a large, appreciative crowd laughing at this macabre joke. After all, the observation on which it's based is so transplendently accurate!
Let's return to the 1990s. Back in those days, President Clinton was distracting attention from the price of his haircuts by making a highly unusual claim.
"We don't have a person to waste," he would weirdly say. For proof of the claim that he actually said this, see yesterday's report.
In fact, we have millions of people to waste, and this has been true for a rather long time. One such group was featured in Saturday's news report, which appeared in the Washington Post.
The report referred to low-income urban students, or at least to one group of same. They attend the D.C. Public Schools—D.C.'s traditional public schools, not its large number of charters.
It seems that things aren't going perfectly well in those public schools. In a report your favorite liberals won't stoop to mention or read, Perry Stein described the state of play concerning graduation this year:
STEIN (4/27/18): Fewer than half of the seniors in the District’s traditional public school system are on track to receive their diplomas in June, a drastic shift for a school district that celebrated a record high graduation rate last year.Say what? An investigation "has undermined the validity of diplomas awarded to the Class of 2017?" Well actually, yes, it has!
Data released Friday by D.C. Public Schools show that 46 percent of the 3,623 seniors are on course to walk across the graduation stage, while 21 percent are considered “moderately off track,” meaning they could still earn enough credits for a diploma.
The graduation rate in 2017 was 73 percent, and these latest numbers suggest the city could be bracing for a double-digit dip.
City officials had said they expected the graduation rate to drop this spring following an investigation that undermined the validity of diplomas awarded to the Class of 2017.
"The city-commissioned probe determined that 1 in 3 graduates in 2017 received their diplomas despite missing too many classes or improperly taking makeup classes," Stein said as he continued. Stein didn't say so, but one in three is more than thirty percent!
Basic in January, the gruesome results of that investigation were also reported by Stein. This latest scandal within D.C.'s schools was, of course, completely ignored by the liberal and mainstream press.
We liberals! We have just one thing on our minds, and it very much isn't the kids in the D.C. schools! Last Saturday night, this cultural problem was described by Michelle Wolf, a modern-day successor to Howard Beale.
Wolf described this problem well. She did so in a brief departure from her comments comparing Ivanka Trump to a big box of used tampons:
WOLF (4/28/18): There's a ton of news right now; a lot is going on, and we have all these 24-hour news networks, and we could be covering everything. But, instead, we're covering like three topics. Every hour, it's Trump, Russia, Hillary and a panel of four people who remind you why you don't go home for Thanksgiving.Wolf didn't really have a punch line to go with that observation. In that sense, she didn't exactly have a joke.
Beyond that, we're not sure when she last watched CNN. We haven't seen a CNN panel that small since the days when Bernie Shaw was asking the Democratic nominee for president to imagine his wife getting raped and killed.
(Maybe Bernie should be hired for the "comedy" segment next year!)
Most CNN panels are larger than that; this guarantees lots of excitement. But Wolf's basic observation was right on target, corporate cable news-wise.
Corporate cable discusses Trump and nothing else. Those low-income kids can go hang in the yard—or maybe they can go play in the yard with Ivanka-reminiscent soiled diapers!
According to that news report in the Post, a whole lot of seniors in D.C. public schools aren't going to graduate this year. Last year, in its latest cheating scandal, the system broke all kinds of rules to get its graduation rate up to 73 percent.
You haven't, and you won't, hear about any of this from your favorite liberal stars. You won't hear about this from Rachel. Nor will you hear about this from Lawrence, Nicolle or Chris.
They discuss Russia and Trump and nothing else. You aren't allowed to know how much they're getting paid to keep them behaving like this.
"We don't have a person to waste," Bill Clinton used to say. He was trying to direct attention away from the major issues of the day—from the price of his haircuts; from the fact that Candidate Gore sometimes wore a brown suit, which was described as "earth tones."
(Gore's suit jackets had three buttons! This was widely discussed, since it helped show that Gore's was "today's man-woman," if we might quote Chris Matthews. Brian Williams was deeply upset by Gore's too-numerous buttons too.)
All they talked about back then was a bunch of phony quotes they'd pout in Gore's month—and of course, those ten blow jobs The Big he had enjoyed. Wolf might have felt right at home inside that era's press corps!
Tomorrow, we'll continue our discussion of the millions of students we do have to waste.
We've had them to waste for a very long time. You won't hear them discussed tonight by the nation's corporate liberals.
Those kids, who may be "years behind," have long been banned from our "cable news" programs, which discuss nothing but Trump. In that sense, Stein's report in the Washington Post was like a tree which fell in the forest, perhaps on Kellyanne.
In that sense, Stein's horrible news report was the latest D.C. Confidential. Over Here in our self-impressed liberal world, we've long since agreed with the power elite:
We have millions of people to waste—to ignore, disregard, disappear.
Tomorrow: Categorizing the gaps