A truly remarkable tale of the Naep!

SATURDAY, JANUARY 11, 2020

Plus Rachel's latest con:
The December 30 Washington Post told a remarkable story on the Metro section's front page.

We'll grant you that the story was framed to advance a current tribal truism. That doesn't mean that the story isn't remarkable. It doesn't mean that we can't use the story to illustrate other important points.

The piece was written by Hannah Natanson. She graduated from Harvard this past June, having prepped at Georgetown Day before that. At the Post, this qualified her to become "a reporter covering education and K-12 schools in Virginia," right straight outta college.

Natanson's piece was a profile of Onelio Mencho Aguilar, a 27-year-old teacher at T. C. Williams High in Alexandria, Virginia. Aguilar's story is truly amazing. In Natanson's rendering, the story starts like this:
NATANSON (12/30/19): Aguilar immigrated to the United States from Guatemala at age 13, traveling alone and speaking only an ancient language, Mayan mam, known to just half a million people. The journey was arduous, the arrival not much better.

Friendless and disoriented, Aguilar spent months crisscrossing the country, seeking sanctuary. At times homeless, always hungry, he worked odd jobs. Eventually, he found his way to Virginia and enrolled at T.C. Williams High, where patient instructors taught him Spanish, English and a newfound love for learning.

But—lacking adult support and a stable home, unable to work full time and make all his classes—the teen foundered. He missed rent, homework and sleep.

T.C. Williams staffers saw something was wrong. They stepped in to offer food, comfort and an introduction to a social worker, who placed Aguilar in foster care.

“The support they gave me, I felt really loved, and I hadn’t experienced that in my whole life,” Aguilar said.

Aguilar went on to graduate from T.C. Williams with a 3.6 GPA (and a green card) and later won a spot at Marymount University. Now, with college degree in hand, Aguilar has returned to his old high school as a teacher.
How does someone who has to leave home at 13 accomplish something like that? We have no idea.

That said, American history is full of remarkable immigrant stories, stories crafted by truly remarkable people. It sounds like Aguilar was abused or mistreated in some way by neighbors in Guatemala. We continue the story from there.
NATANSON: As soon as he finished sixth grade, Aguilar quit school and started working in the corn fields to save money to pay for his journey. After a year, he’d amassed 800 quetzals, equivalent to just over $100. He didn’t know for sure but figured that was probably enough to pay for bus tickets and passage across the U.S.-Mexico border.

Aguilar kissed his mother goodbye. He’d celebrated his 13th birthday four months before.

“That journey was crazy,” Aguilar said.
“I did whatever I had to do to get from point A to point B.”

[...]

“When I think about it now as an adult, for a 13-year-old to just leave home and risk himself doing all of that . . . ” Aguilar paused. “It’s a bit of a miracle I’m still here.”
It does seem like a bit of a miracle that Aguilar "is still here." It's amazing to think that a person with this history could end up graduating from high school with a 3.6 GPA, going on to college and becoming a teacher at the high school which gave him a home.

As this story was told in the Post, it was used to support a bit of conventional wisdom which is almost certainly accurate—it's a good idea for American schools to have diverse teaching staffs.

In Natanson's telling, immigrant kids at T.C. Williams are gaining from Aguilar's presence at a teacher—from having access to a teacher who understands the types of problems they face, based on first-hand experience.

Almost surely, that is true. For ourselves, we would draw an additional lesson from this remarkable profile.

Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story. That said, most physicists aren't Albert Einstein, and most low-income immigrant kids from Central America will not end up at T.C. Williams pulling a 3.6.

Immigration of this type does put a type of stress on American public schools—a type of stress which is barely present in the officially miraculous schools of low-immigration Finland.

Something else is true about miraculous Finland. To its credit, the country never devoted several centuries to the task of trying to eliminate literacy from one segment of its population, as our own benighted ancestors once decided to do.

Our schools are dealing with the challenges of immigration. They're also dealing with the legacy of that brutal racial history.

Assuming Natanson's story is accurate, Aguilar is the Albert Einstein of low-income immigrant kids. Might we also note that teachers at T.C. Williams were saving Aguilar during the years when our upper-end newspapers were full of complaints about the way nothing was working in our public schools, thanks in large part to our slacker teachers with their ratty unions?

Think of all the kids who come to our schools with life stories resembling Aguilar's! These children, and their parents, are often the bravest and best—the architects of the nation's future.

That said, they often come from low-literacy backgrounds, and they speak neither English nor Finnish. These factors help explain the apparently huge achievement gaps which appear in our Naep and Pisa data. When slackers at the New York Times only hand you aggregate data, they rob you of the chance to consider the shape of the actual challenges we're living with at the present time.

We "liberals!" Ever since the 1960s, we've been pretending that those gaps just can't be that large.

At the Times and at the Washington Post, they refuse to report the actual data which quantify the gaps. In this way, they excuse themselves from the task of discussing the apparent size of the gaps. In their comically slacker way, everyone praises the Pisa and Naep and no one reports their data!

There's a simple term for this—we're just extremely dumb. Our tribunes serve us the pap which permits us to feel that we care. We're too dumb to understand the ways we're getting conned.

We've processed these topics this way ever since roughly forever. Nothing will ever change about this. We're currently making ourselves feel good by pretending that we can "desegregate" our way out of our gaps while discussing nothing else.

This is a fantastical notion. But it dominates the Hamptons-based thinking of the ridiculous, upper-class people who currently swarm at the New York Times.

Continuing his somewhat gloomy ways,
Kevin Drum has raised a host of questions about the Naep—questions we'll address in the future. Having said that, might we speak in praise of our favorite blogger?

As you may have noticed, Drum is the only upper-end liberal commentator who ever discusses such topics. They don't so so at New York magazine's wonderblog, and they don't do so on MSNBC. Let's tell it straight for once:

At those sites, nobody cares. They don't give a flying felafel concerning the lives and the interests of the many good, decent kids within our low-income schools.

In a final comment today, we watched Rachel Maddow's latest disgrace last night. Five years later, this spectacular flimflam artist was lightly scolding the New York Times for its 4400-word, crackpot report concerning Candidate Hillary Clinton and Uranium One.

That clownish report appeared on April 23, 2015. It was an obvious gong show right from the start.

Five years later, our tribe's favorite corporate confection has boldly begun to speak up. Though not without praising the overall greatness of the upper-class paper in question.

In the near future, we'll show you what Maddow's program said about that absurd report in real time. (As usual, Maddow herself said absolutely nothing.)

How did Donald Trump reach the Oval? Maddow was self-protectively silent every single step of the way. That said, we love love love her endless cons and the ways she entertains us. We love her "performance of the Rachel figure," as Janet Malcolm weirdly put it.

This was the best our species was wired to do, future experts now gloomily say.

92 comments:

  1. “As you may have noticed, Drum is the only upper-end liberal commentator who ever discusses such topics. They don't so so at New York magazine's wonderblog, and they don't do so on MSNBC.”

    And Bob Somerby doesn’t pay jack shit attention to what’s going on:

    “Streamed live on Dec 14, 2019
    Hear from top Democratic presidential candidates at the “Public Education Forum 2020: Equity and Opportunity for All” on Saturday, Dec. 14, at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh.”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVfC5NhAIXM

    The event lasted 5 hours 57 minutes.

    “MSNBC will moderate and exclusively livestream the forum.”

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/msnbc-host-december-forum-education-issues-2020-democrats-n1095126

    It seems TDH is the one who won’t discuss this.

    Must be because all the candidates are just so terrible. Surely thus event, sponsored by the American Federation of Teachers, was also terrible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello everyone. I was heartbroken because i had very small penis, not nice to satisfy a woman, i had so many relationship called off because of my situation, i have used so many product which i found online but none could offer me the help i searched for. i saw some few comments about this specialist called Dr OLU and decided to email him on drolusolutionhome@gmail.com
      so I decided to give his herbal product a try. i emailed him and he got back to me, he gave me some comforting words with his herbal pills for Penis t, Enlargement Within 5 day of it, i began to feel the enlargement of my penis, ” and now it just 2 weeks of using his products my penis is about 10 inches longer and am so happy..feel free to contact DR OLU on(drolusolutionhome@gmail.com)or whatsapp him on this number +2348140654426  

      Delete


    2. I want to give a big thanks to a great spell caster commonly known as DR TAKUTA for the great spiritual prayers he did in my life by bringing my ex-lover back to me after many months of breakup and loneliness. With this, I am convinced that you are sent to this word to rescue people from heartbreaks and also to help us get the solution to every relationship problem. for those of you out there who have one relationship problem or the other why not contact DR TAKUTA. that is the best place you can solve all your problems, including a lack of jobs and promotions, binding and marriage spells, divorce and attraction spells, good luck and lotto spells, he has herbal medicine to cure any type of diseases and infections and medicine for infertility, and pregnancy spells, and also the business success and customer increase, winning court cases and many more. contact him at takutaspellalter@gmail.com or contact mobile contact +27788634102














































































      I want to give a big thanks to a great spell caster commonly known as DR TAKUTA for the great spiritual prayers he did in my life by bringing my ex-lover back to me after many months of breakup and loneliness. With this, I am convinced that you are sent to this word to rescue people from heartbreaks and also to help us get the solution to every relationship problem. for those of you out there who have one relationship problem or the other why not contact DR TAKUTA. that is the best place you can solve all your problems, including a lack of jobs and promotions, binding and marriage spells, divorce and attraction spells, good luck and lotto spells, he has herbal medicine to cure any type of diseases and infections and medicine for infertility, and pregnancy spells, and also the business success and customer increase, winning court cases and many more. contact him at takutaspellalter@gmail.com or contact mobile contact +27788634102



















































      Delete
  2. "To its credit, the country never devoted several centuries to the task of trying to eliminate literacy from one segment of its population"

    Dear Bob, self-hatred and self-pity have never enlightened anyone.

    Finland was a colony of Sweden for hundreds of years, then a colony of the Russian Empire, and only became independent in 1917. Then it had a civil war, and then two more wars; and in one of them it was allied with Nazi Germany. And yet, look at them now.

    Anyhow. Like a typical liberal zombie, you're looking for all kinds of excuses, all of them completely ludicrous. It's fascinating, really. Go on, please.

    ReplyDelete
  3. How does it "protect" Rachel Maddow to say nothing about the Uranium One story? Is Somerby theorizing that she was being threatened by someone to keep quiet?

    Ali Velshi and Joy Reid were both critical of the story. They are on MSNBC, so it was not the network keeping her quiet while her colleagues discussed the story.

    ReplyDelete
  4. What good would come from emphasizing the gaps in NY Times reporting?

    I see a potential harm to minority students because headlines about gaps would encourage those who want to claim that disparities are genetic. It would give support to those who want to claim that current programs aren't working and should be discontinued. It would give fuel to racism and drive people further apart. I don't see any benefit to that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I see a potential harm....

      So the gaps aren't real?

      I don't see any benefit to that.

      Oh, well, Numpty says there's no benefit. Let's ignore it then

      Delete
    2. Another cogent rebuttal.

      Your hostility comes through clearly but you don't express any arguments at all. This reveals your true purpose here -- to harass those who disagree with Somerby.

      Delete
    3. A comment by some Anonymous Ignoramus about what he “sees” hardly requires any rebuttal, let alone a cogent one. Stop pretending that I don’t make arguments backed by data. It’s disingenuous of you. I often go point-by-point through the claims of commenters I disagree with, earning the whining complaints that I don’t contribute enough original commentary.

      And whaddyawant? A reward for figuring out that I’m hostile to ignoramuses who can’t read for comprehension?

      Delete
    4. I read fine. I don't agree with you or with Somerby and my complaints about Somerby are justified. Telling me that I can't read for comprehension, calling me names, speculating that I never passed a reading test and so on constitutes harassment.

      If you disagree, state your arguments. There is no need to heap abuse on those you disagree with in the process.

      When you go point-by-point through claims, you aren't refuting anything. You are suggesting that the only possible reading of Somerby is a lawyerese parsing of literal meaning that entirely ignores context, implication and Somerby's past rants. I'd say the frequency of fact-checking to the demand for literality ("where does Somerby say he hates RM" after he has trashed her in so many words) is about 1 to 100. The point-by-point analysis is an excuse to make a series of insults, all amounting to: if Somerby doesn't say pedophilia (hebephilia) is OK then he hasn't implied anything by saying that it is OK for older men to "date" young girls if the mamas approve of it, cause it is a tradition to marry young in the South.

      I want you to stop calling for the people you persecute to use nyms, stop calling anyone here names, and stop insisting that the only possible reading of text consists of a lawyerlike parsing of literal, concrete meaning without reference to broader understandings of meaning. No one reads like you insist we all must. If you read like that in an English class, you would get an F. People don't write with the literality you demand, especially not Somerby. So you need to stop this because it is cluttering the comments with garbage that no one wants to take the time to respond to, that introduces incivility and a harsh tone that discourages participation, and doesn't help anyone's understanding of anything except that you have too much time on your hands, are Somerby himself, or are being paid to troll this blog.

      Delete
    5. I read fine. [M]y complaints about Somerby are justified.

      Possibly. But since you don’t have the courtesy to use an identifiable nym, you’re pretty much stuck with my blanket contemnation of the gaggle of Anonymous Ignoramuses.

      Telling me that I can't read for comprehension, calling me names, speculating that I never passed a reading test and so on constitutes harassment.

      When you can’t get the simplest facts straight, then in fact, you can’t read for comprehension. I call you ignorant and unable to reason properly. Don’t act like I’m calling you fat, stupid, or ugly.

      And whatever I say here is not harassment. You have no expectation of immunity from criticism on the commentary section of a publicly-accessible blog

      If you disagree, state your arguments.

      I do over and over and over…. That you cannot or will not understand those arguments doesn’t make them nonexistent.

      There is no need to heap abuse on those you disagree with in the process.

      OK, fair cop. But one, I enjoy ridiculing the clueless, and two, you have a very low bar for abuse.

      When you go point-by-point through claims, you aren't refuting anything.

      Sorry, but that’s exactly what I’m doing. Why not pay attention to what I write instead of taking immediate umbrage?

      You are suggesting that the only possible reading of Somerby is a lawyerese parsing of literal meaning that entirely ignores context, implication and Somerby's past rants.

      I’m saying that it’s out of bounds to posit readings of TDH that are in direct contradiction to what he states explicitly.

      I’d say the frequency of fact-checking to the demand for literality ("where does Somerby say he hates RM" after he has trashed her in so many words) is about 1 to 100.

      Hates is a strong word. I have no idea whether TDH is so invested in RM that he hates her, but I’d certainly say he holds her in utter contempt. What’s your point?

      The point-by-point analysis is an excuse to make a series of insults, all amounting to: if Somerby doesn't say pedophilia (hebephilia) is OK then he hasn't implied anything by saying that it is OK for older men to "date" young girls if the mamas approve of it, cause it is a tradition to marry young in the South.

      This seems to be an obsession with you. But let’s get down to it. Is it OK for thirty-something men to have sexual relationships with eighteen-year old women if there’s no coercion, deception, or exploitation involved? It’s certainly legally OK, since eighteen-year olds are adults. In my moral universe, it’s OK because no one is unfairly at risk. Deception seems unlikely here if the family of the women know and approve.

      That said, I think adults having sex with underaged partners is definitely not OK, and nothing I’ve said about older men having sex with young partners who are of legal age implies that I’m in favor of pedophilia. Sorry, but I think the same goes for TDH.

      Now here’s the part where I repeat that you can’t read for comprehension. The point of TDH’s blog posts on Roy Moore is that the media was, like you, throwing themselves on the fainting couch over Moore’s legal relationships while ignoring the “credible” (TDH’s word) accusations from women who said that Moore sexually assaulted them when they were underage.

      Seems a fair point, but one you simply can’t seem to get.

      (con't)->

      Delete
    6. <-(con't)

      I want you to stop calling for the people you persecute to use nyms,

      I want you to stop using hyperbolic language is describe my comments, none of which have the slightest ability to “persecute” anyone.

      And, no, I won’t stop asking people to use nyms to make discussions here easier. Failure to do so is as rude as anything I do. Using such a nym is risk free. Call yourself Anonymous1234 if you wish. I have no way to turn that request into a demand, so what are you worried about?

      stop calling anyone here names,

      I’m harsh in describing what people do, not who they are. None of my insults are personal, and all are germane to what’s posted. I don’t plan to change that as I see no good reason to.

      and stop insisting that the only possible reading of text consists of a lawyerlike parsing of literal, concrete meaning without reference to broader understandings of meaning.

      I claim it’s wrong to employ unlawyerlike parsing to come up with imaginary meaning by referencing your own prejudices. I don’t plan to stop calling out commenters when they do that. I don’t see how I’m in a position to insist on anything since all I can do is comment.

      No one reads like you insist we all must.

      If you don’t read like me, then you’ll reach erroneous conclusions. I’m in no position to do anything more than point that out.

      If you read like that in an English class, you would get an F.

      We’re not in English class, and we’re not discussing literary fiction.

      People don't write with the literality you demand, especially not Somerby.

      TDH is obsessively, insistently, and sometimes pedantically literal. Subtlety is not his strong suit.

      So you need to stop this because it is cluttering the comments with garbage that no one wants to take the time to respond to,

      This commentary section is littered with trollishness from the likes of Mao, idiocy from the likes of David in Cal, absurd abuse from the likes of Centrist, ads from Indian packing and moving companies, and testimonies from spell casters. The clutter ship sailed long ago. If you have no cogent response to my comments, then fine. But don’t pretend I’m making too much of a mess.

      that introduces incivility and a harsh tone that discourages participation,

      Incivility and harsh tone: fair cop. Do harsh comments from someone you don’t know and thus presumably care nothing about really discourage your participation? And how do you know anyone else is so scared of me that they don’t comment? I think you’re just making that up.

      and doesn't help anyone's understanding of anything except that you have too much time on your hands,

      I obviously have the extra time to comment, but just because you don’t understand what I write, doesn’t mean no one does.

      are Somerby himself, or are being paid to troll this blog.

      I assure you that I’m not Somerby. And if you know how I can get paid for this, please let me know the details.

      You also need to look up the meaning of the word troll. For comparison, Mao is a troll.

      Delete
    7. My name is SHERRY WALJER from USA Massachusetts, i want to testify to the general public how my relationship was restored back by the great power's of Dr Larry after three months of loneliness, my ex-lover called me after my contact with Dr Larry that he want us to come back and start a good home, now we are happily together again as lovers. All thanks to Dr Larry who did a love spell for me for my ex lover to return home. I will keep sharing this until people who also need help see this for his wonderful help. You can contact him on his via email assurancesolutionhome@gmail. com or whatsapp him on +2348102316854     website  http://assurancesolutionhome.website2.me/  




      My name is SHERRY WALJER from USA Massachusetts, i want to testify to the general public how my relationship was restored back by the great power's of Dr Larry after three months of loneliness, my ex-lover called me after my contact with Dr Larry that he want us to come back and start a good home, now we are happily together again as lovers. All thanks to Dr Larry who did a love spell for me for my ex lover to return home. I will keep sharing this until people who also need help see this for his wonderful help. You can contact him on his via email assurancesolutionhome@gmail. com or whatsapp him on +2348102316854     website  http://assurancesolutionhome.website2.me/  

      Delete
  5. "Assuming Natanson's story is accurate, Aguilar is the Albert Einstein of low-income immigrant kids."

    Yes, there is always the possibility that Natanson is a big fat liar. In fact, lets all assume she is, since she came from an elite college via a prep school and is just starting out as a reporter. Probably everything she writes is full of lies.

    Somerby wants to portray Aguilar as exceptional because he wants to portray the rest of the immigrant kids as a drag on our educational systems. He wants to claim that Finland (which has 7% immigration) is exceptional because it is homogenous while the US struggles with all of those minority and immigrant kids -- without which the white and Asian kids would be recognized as the Einsteins of PISA scorers.

    I suppose it hasn't occurred to Somerby that perhaps the US does better with its immigrant kids, because of its experience with them, whereas Finland is less well equipped because immigrants are less frequent there.

    I suspect that immigrant kids are not included in the testing in either country, since the rules permit exclusion of non-native speakers or "language-learners".

    I taught at a HACU university (Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities). Stories like Aguilar's are frequent among students there. In communities all over the US, people are helping adult and child immigrants to adjust and improve their lives. Human beings do that -- they help each other. It is routine, not an Einstein-rare exception.

    But Somerby's jaundiced view of humanity doesn't permit him to see that not everyone is like Trump and his hateful rally-goers. In real life, people help each other.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, there is always the possibility that Natanson is a big fat liar.

      Apparently you are unaware that the NYT has a long history of being duped by its reporters. Every narrative the paper publishes should come with a bold warning: Only Assuming Everything in This Story is Accurate.

      Somerby wants to portray Aguilar as exceptional because he wants to portray the rest of the immigrant kids as a drag on our educational systems.

      It hardly matters what TDH “wants.” What matters is what obtains. Are you claiming that immigration doesn’t tax our school system? You call that claim a “drag”; TDH calls it “stress.” Is it an erroneous claim? And before you cite TDH as a nativist bigot, here’s what he said about immigrants:

      These children, and their parents, are often the bravest and best—the architects of the nation's future.

      In real life, people help each other.

      Then there’s some hope for you. Maybe you can find some kind party to explain TDH’s blog entries to you.

      Not me, though. I’m busy.

      Delete
    2. Why don't you get a little busier and stop hounding the people who write comments here.

      CA and many Southwest states have had Spanish speaking residents since they were part of Mexico (and Spain before that). People grow up with Spanish as their primary language in the home and acquire English in school. They are immigrants in no sense of the word. The schools have always been expected to help them.

      In other parts of the country, immigrants have always been a substantial proportion of students in schools and the purpose of mandatory education has always been to socialize immigrants into American traditions and to make citizens of newcomers. That is one of the primary purposes of public education since the earliest days of our nation's existence. Teachers learn that as part of their training.

      It is only the nativist ugliness of Trump and his bigoted followers that have redefined education as only for white Anglo-Saxon English speakers, just as conservative politicians have only recently abandoned immigrant labor as a boon to industry and farming and decided to target immigrants to appease America firsters.

      Somerby jumps right on that conservative bandwagon with his assertion that Aguilar's story may be inflated, and that the rest of the immigrants are not as admirable and may be causing strain on schools.

      Those of us who have taught immigrants throughout our teaching careers know that Aguilar is not an exception and that these kids are hard working and eager to learn and deserve our help.

      Delete
    3. Why don't you get a little busier and stop hounding the people who write comments here.

      Oh, ferfuksake, why don’t you get over yourself? Nobody here knows me, so presumably nobody here cares much about what I say. Nobody here has anything to do with me outside this commentary, and about the worst charges I make here are about ignorance and trolling. Hardly qualifies as “hounding,” Snowflake. Don’t like what I write? Don’t read what I write. I’m easy to spot since I always comment under a unique ID. Problem solved.

      You got yourself so wound up in relating the (irrelevant) history of the US southwest, that apparently you didn’t realize that nobody here — not me, not TDH — disagrees with you about immigrants and education.

      TDH is rightfully skeptical of the NYT’s shining profiles. Their track record is so bad, it’s always worth a conditional warning. Aguilar has an exceptional story, which is what attracted the NYT in the first place. Most people aren’t exceptional, but that doesn’t mean they’re not admirable in their own way — hard working, eager to learn, and deserving of our help.

      Delete
    4. Somerby disagrees with me about immigrants. He said so repeatedly, each time he questioned the accuracy of Natanson's account of Aguilar's accomplishments.

      You would probably think that if Aguilar came at age 12 or 14 that invalidates his whole story. Somerby repeats his warning 3 times.

      I disagree that most people aren't exceptional. I think all people have some exceptionality that would be interesting to others. I have known quite a few immigrants who have done as well as Aguilar, and I've written letters on behalf of Dreamers.

      I objected that perceiving Aguilar as exceptional implied that other immigrants were a great deal less successful. I said that many immigrants succeed as he has. It is Somerby who wants us to think that stories of success, everyday success are apocryphal, exaggerated.

      I don't know why he insists on tearing down stories of educational success, but he does this regularly. This time he is tearing down a story of immigrant success. Not because he has any facts to the contrary but just because he thinks it sounds too good to be true. That makes him a huge asshole, and you are an accomplice because you will say that "most people" aren't much, as long as you can bring immigrants down a notch too.

      The main reason students don't succeed in college is that they are not particularly hard working and eager to learn. Our college drop out level measures that quality. Given that anyone can afford community college these days, the majority of students who do not go on tell us that your belief that most people are hard working and eager to learn is wrong.

      When a boy at age 13 struggles to get to the US, he is used to expending major effort toward a goal. After reaching the US, he transferred his energy to new goals. Aguilar learned that effort pays off and he learned it young. Immigrant kids have that opportunity and it is why his story is far from unique.

      Somerby has no right to insinuate that his accomplishments are false, whether he wishes to attack Natanson's competence or portray immigrants as a liability because they reduce overall NAEP and PISA scores. Somerby is doing active harm to innocent people when he writes this trash. And so are you when you defend him by harassing those of us who disagree with him.

      Delete
    5. “ Somerby is doing active harm to innocent people when he writes this trash. And so are you when you defend him by harassing those of us who disagree with him.”

      You’d need a heart of stone not to laugh at this irony.

      Delete
    6. He [TDH] repeatedly, … questioned the accuracy of Natanson's account of Aguilar's accomplishments.

      This is entirely in your own head.

      I disagree that most people aren't exceptional. I think all people have some exceptionality that would be interesting to others.

      You can disagree all you want. Most people are ordinary and have few things that would make them interesting to a reporter from a national paper.

      I objected that perceiving Aguilar as exceptional implied that other immigrants were a great deal less successful.

      Object all you want. The only implication is that other immigrants don’t end up in a national newspaper.

      I said that many immigrants succeed as he has.

      Say whatever you want. Few immigrants succeed as Aguilar has. This takes away nothing from their own successes.

      It is Somerby who wants us to think that stories of success, everyday success are apocryphal, exaggerated.

      It’s always wise to question the heroic tales in national newspapers. That’s all.

      I don't know why he insists on tearing down stories of educational success, but he does this regularly.

      You can’t count this blog entry because here’s what he says about Aguilar: “Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story.” And I’ll bet you can’t name another time TDH tore down true “stories of educational success.”

      This time he is tearing down a story of immigrant success. Not because he has any facts to the contrary but just because he thinks it sounds too good to be true.

      Let me repeat what TDH writes: “Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story.”

      That makes him a huge asshole

      Forgive me, but not as big an asshole as someone who misrepresents another’s words to claim he says the opposite of what he actually says.

      and you are an accomplice because you will say that "most people" aren't much, as long as you can bring immigrants down a notch too.

      Please quit telling me what I will say. Most people aren’t exceptional. I’m not. I doubt you are. That doesn’t mean we aren’t “much.” We can be plenty without being special. I have often have had occasion to say that immigrants work long hours at hard jobs for low pay in bad conditions just to make a better life for their families. They have lives most Americans couldn’t abide for twenty minutes. I’d trade each of them for some asshole in a MAGA hat at a Trump rally. You don’t have to go back far in my family tree to find immigrants all.

      The main reason students don't succeed in college is that they are not particularly hard working and eager to learn.

      And you know this how?

      Somerby has no right to insinuate that his accomplishments are false,


      He doesn’t. This is entirely in your own head.

      whether he wishes to attack Natanson's competence or portray immigrants as a liability because they reduce overall NAEP and PISA scores.

      Reducing test scores is not an indication that immigrants are a liability. Here’s what TDH actually says about immigrants: “These children, and their parents, are often the bravest and best—the architects of the nation's future.”

      Somerby is doing active harm to innocent people when he writes this trash. And so are you when you defend him by harassing those of us who disagree with him.

      TDH has no means to do active harm to anyone. He’s the owner of a blog nobody reads, and what he writes doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to your claims of what he writes. My “defense” of TDH is presenting TDH’s own words to you, words that contradict your claims about them.

      Disagree with TDH all you want. Just quote him accurately. When you fail in this simple task, I’ll point it out. That’s hardly harassment.

      Delete
  6. Notice how Somerby doesn't mention that Clinton was cleared in yet another DOJ investigation. He was among the people who were calling Clinton a flawed candidate, untrustworthy, dishonest (lacking authenticity). He didn't defend her on anything but was one of the so-called liberals expressing disdain for her candidacy -- during the election!!

    Somerby gave us Trump and now he wants to pretend that it was all Rachel Maddow's fault for not discussing Uranium One. He can't excuse his own failure to support Clinton by attacking Maddow. He owes all of us an apology -- Clinton most of all, as investigations pile up and never show any cause for the many accusations made against her.

    Maddow isn't supposed to be an advocate for Clinton. Somerby claims to be a liberal, yet he didn't support our party's nominee, damning her with peevish criticism (like the rest of the Bernie bros and Russian stooges did). Say you're sorry, Somerby.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why would Somerby say he is sorry ? He is a defacto Trumptard. He defends DJT, Roy Moore, Ron Johnson, Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes

      Delete
    2. Er, Sparky? It turns out that Clinton was flawed enough to lose. Her flaws kept me from supporting her in 2008, and I never thought she was dishonest or "lacking in authenticity."

      Nobody but us reads TDH. Lotsa people watch RM. TDH's support or lack thereof meant nothing in 2016. A RM report pushing back on Uranium One at least had the potential to make a difference.

      If RM isn't supposed to be an advocate for Clinton, then why is TDH supposed to be one? RM is at least supposed to explain important news stories

      Delete
    3. "If RM isn't supposed to be an advocate for Clinton, then why is TDH supposed to be one? "

      Somerby claims to be a liberal, that's why.

      Delete
    4. @12:04, Do you understand that makes no sense?

      Probably not.

      Delete
    5. Somerby claims to be liberal yet he doesn't support the nominee of the Democratic party. Of course he can support the Greens or write in Bernie, but if he doesn't want Trump to win, he must support the Democratic candidate. Otherwise, his claim to be a liberal, along with "us liberals", is questionable. Put this together with his continuing expression of conservative memes, including one about higher education being an elite boondoggle, and it means that he should have advocated for Clinton, defended her instead of repeating complaints about her, if he were any kind of liberal.

      He gave us Trump. He may regret it, but he cannot claim that we liberals caused The Other to vote for Trump when he himself didn't support THE NOMINEE of the Democratic Party.

      Delete
    6. 'If RM isn't supposed to be an advocate for Clinton, then why is TDH supposed to be one'

      if one believed that TDH was a liberal, one might assume so.

      But from TDH's posts, we can see that he is an advocate for DJT, Roy Moore, Devin Nunes, Ron Johnson and Jim Jordan. Hence, a Trumptard.

      Delete
    7. To claim that the author of a blog no one reads somehow “gave us Trump” is absurd. How much weight do you think this blog carries? Feel free to use fractions in your estimate.

      This isn’t a traditional political blog that endorses politicians. Odd that you still haven’t figure that out.

      I think anyone with progressive views who didn’t support Clinton in ’16 was a fool, but I generally don’t question people’s political beliefs, which are independent of electoral tactics. I recommend that stance to you.

      And you need to get our more. Perhaps read a few real right-wing sites. Then you’ll know what “conservative” memes really are.

      Delete
    8. Somerby said several times that he favored Bernie and he took several opportunities to state that Clinton was a bad candidate.

      You can as easily say that liberals, especially the ones here, are not responsible for giving us Trump either. There aren't enough of us and "us liberals" aren't doing the things Somerby likes to accuse liberals of doing to elect Trump. But this is your go-to argument whenever we complain that Somerby is working hard to advance conservative goals here.

      Do you think Russia is counting pennies when it decides where and how to advance memes destructive to electing a liberal candidate in the next election? Their technique is to blast their message everywhere and let the ripples spread.

      I do read some conservative websites. It is depressing, but that is partly how I recognize what Somerby is doing here.

      So far, Somerby rarely misses an opportunity to advance right wing causes and his overall messages are nearly always in support of conservative memes. You don't hear him raising progressive ideas or arguments ever.

      Today (Saturday) it was undermining trust in newspaper reporting by challenging the accuracy of a favorable report about immigrant success, without actually pointing to any inaccuracies in the article. What liberal writes that shit?

      His overall negative tone about whatever he chooses to write about leaves readers with malaise about such institutions as our public schools and their testing programs, newspapers in general, TV pundits (even on MSNBC), and humanity, since we are berated every day about how awful humanity is and how future anthropologists have predicted the fall of civilization (or some such). Nihilism directed toward institutions important to our democracy. Who else but Russia would fund this? And he pretends to be a liberal!

      And you aren't any better.

      Delete
    9. 'I generally don’t question people’s political beliefs'

      I only do so when they claim to be liberals, but act like Trumptards.

      Delete
    10. Somerby said several times that he favored Bernie and he took several opportunities to state that Clinton was a bad candidate.

      So what? Are we supposed to report him to the Central Committee for censure? Support for Clinton isn’t a litmus test for liberalism. Perhaps refusal to support Clinton was a litmus test for foolishness, but that’s different.

      You can as easily say that liberals, especially the ones here, are not responsible for giving us Trump either. There aren't enough of us and "us liberals" aren't doing the things Somerby likes to accuse liberals of doing to elect Trump. But this is your go-to argument whenever we complain that Somerby is working hard to advance conservative goals here.

      This is utterly incoherent. I can’t tell what you’re saying liberals are or not responsible for. Liberals are not responsible for Trump, and I don’t put much stock in TDH’s theory that if we only treated fascists better they wouldn’t be fascists. On the other hand, the “conservative” goals are to push wealth upward, punish poor people, destroy an independent judiciary, and establish a theocracy. TDH isn’t working toward any of that, even if you can’t stand the fact that he is critical of liberals.

      Do you think Russia is counting pennies when it decides where and how to advance memes destructive to electing a liberal candidate in the next election? Their technique is to blast their message everywhere and let the ripples spread.

      And so Russia is paying Somerby to write a blog no one reads? I thought they were concentrating on high-volume social media sites and hacking voting machines, but that’s really just a guess.

      I do read some conservative websites. It is depressing, but that is partly how I recognize what Somerby is doing here.

      If you can’t tell the difference between “conservative” web sites and TDH, that would explain things.

      So far, Somerby rarely misses an opportunity to advance right wing causes and his overall messages are nearly always in support of conservative memes. You don't hear him raising progressive ideas or arguments ever.

      This isn’t a blog touting progressive ideas. It’s a jeremiad.

      Today (Saturday) it was undermining trust in newspaper reporting by challenging the accuracy of a favorable report about immigrant success, without actually pointing to any inaccuracies in the article. What liberal writes that shit?

      A liberal who wants to warn you that liberal outlets have bungled education reporting for years. It’s a liberal who took an off-hand slap at the execrable waste of time, space, and opportunity that is RM. Are either of these things in dispute?

      His overall negative tone about whatever he chooses to write about leaves readers with malaise

      And you know this how? Somehow I’m able to read TDH, take away what I think is important, discard what I think is nonsense, and not thereby fall into despair. Get up off the fainting couch. It’s just one contrarian with a blog nobody reads.

      Nihilism directed toward institutions important to our democracy.

      Better than happy talk, in my opinion.

      Who else but Russia would fund this?

      Please. You think the Russians are funding a blog no one reads?

      And he pretends to be a liberal!
      And you aren't any better.


      Please. You have no idea about my level of support for progressive causes.

      Delete
    11. 'This isn’t a blog touting progressive ideas'

      True. It is a blog told by a Trumptard, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

      Delete
    12. 'You have no idea about my level of support for progressive causes.'

      True, but I can tell that you support Trumptards, since you support Somerby.

      Delete
  7. "We love her "performance of the Rachel figure," as Janet Malcolm weirdly put it."

    Is any TV celebrity portraying their at-home selves on TV? They are all larger than life and portraying a figure that isn't who they are in real life. News anchors and pundits aren't expressing their views the way they would to family and friends. Who believes they are? Children maybe.

    What is weird about a media critic talking about a public figure's persona? Does Somerby even know what the word persona means?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think what's supposed to be weird is that "we" love her performance instead of seeing it as the empty performance that it is.

      Delete
    2. If you think back to Somerby's article on this, he thought it was weird that someone would be referred to as performing as themselves. He doesn't get public versus private personas. Or at least he pretends he doesn't. You are twisting the meaning of this self-quote which Somerby has taken out of context.

      This is the kind of thing that makes it appear that you are working extra hard to defend Somerby. Why do you do this? It makes you look foolish.

      Delete
    3. I don't have to work "extra hard" to counter the ignorance I find here. Unless you count all the typing as extra hard. A persona is literally a mask. I count it as usual for people to be themselves in private but have a different public face. I think it's a bit strange to stage an obvious and transparent performance as though it were an authentic portrayal. But then I can't stand RM, so I'm not exactly unbiased.

      If I misunderstood (or more likely, just didn't understand as you did), the so be it. All that means is that I might be wrong. You have a selective eye for foolishness.

      Delete
    4. You might start with a classic of sociology, Erving Goffman's "The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life."

      Jung described persona as the mask we wear to others to preserve our privacy. It is a role enacted for others. Authenticity refers to congruence between your public and private selves (called shadow by Jung).

      We all do this. There is no special virtue in having a "more authentic" persona. It just makes someone feel more in control, safer, knowing who others are. There is no reason why any public figure should be "authentic" on screen. The criticism is stupid. Even public figures are entitled to a private life and there is no reason why they should be expected to behave like intimate friends with every stranger.

      This attack made no sense when it was lodged against Hillary Clinton and it makes no sense as a criticism of Rachel Maddow either. Of course she is performing a role. That is her job. Now they are teaching Chris Hayes to perform more like Rachel Maddow does. Not a peep from Somerby about that. But then, he doesn't complain about men, even when they do the same thing as his favorite female targets.

      Delete
    5. Please don't throw Jung at me. I'm likely to believe that you're as big an idiot as he was. I suppose you too believe in the I-ching.

      Sure, there's no sense in pretending that public figures don't have a public persona that differs from their private selves. What's said to be creepy here is RM playing her public figure as though it were really her private self and her audience applauding her even as they realize what she's doing.

      I'm agnostic on whether that's what's really going on. For one, I haven't watched RM in years as I can't stand the sound of her phoniness as she wastes time, space, and opportunity. For two, I realize that my distaste makes me biased.

      Delete
    6. RM is doing the same thing as Oprah or Ellen or any other personality on TV. Maybe Somerby just doesn't like women on talk shows, especially successful ones.

      I don't watch Maddow because I don't care about most of what she discusses. I watch Chris Hayes and then switch the channel. But she doesn't bother or annoy me. When there is that kind of emotionality behind dislike, it isn't just about how she does her show. But that is between Somerby and his shrink, and you and yours if your "distaste" rises to the same level as Somerby's obsession with her.

      Like it or not, Jung was influential in personality theory. He coined the term and that's why I mentioned him. As I said, read Erving Goffman.

      Delete
  8. If Somerby is correct and Aguilar is a rare success story, wouldn't you expect the Hispanic gaps on NAEP to be much much larger?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Kevin Drum doesn't care about gaps and education and kids. He doesn't care much about any social issues. He is especially clueless about women's issues. He cares about data. He likes to put things into graph form and analyze whether claims about them are true or not. He likes policy and economics and trends. He rarely talks about people and their lives, other than to quote stats at us about them.

    Drum and Somerby have a mutual-admiration feedback loop going. Drum talks about NAEP because he reads Somerby. Somerby says Drum cares about schools because Drum quotes him. Drum would pay no attention to Somerby at all, if he weren't talking about test scores instead of children.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow! You must really know Drum and Somerby well. Tell me, what are they really like?

      Delete
    2. Read him for years and you will know what is obvious, just as I do.

      Delete
    3. I've read him for years and find many obvious things, like sure as sunrise, TDH will pen another obsessive rant about standardized test scores. But about TDH's inner-most thoughts and motivations, I can only guess. You, however, know these things. How do you do it?

      Delete
    4. Here is how I do it. I look at patterns of behavior, not just the literal superficial meanings of words.

      Delete
    5. 'I've read TDH for years '

      Naturally, you have to read something when you write it.

      Delete
    6. I'm open to the claim, @4:08P, that you've looked at patterns in TDH's writing that belie the literal meaning of what he writes, but unless you know Somerby, you can't be looking at his behavior. That you apparently think otherwise leads me to believe you're talking nonsense.

      Delete
    7. Who knows if Bob actually believes the Right-wing grievances he writes up on a daily basis?
      Plenty of Right-wingers pretend they hate "socialism" and "political correctness", when
      'socialism" and "political correctness" are major parts of their ideology.

      Delete
  10. “We'll grant you that the story was framed to advance a current tribal truism. “

    What is the tribal truism? Somerby never says.

    Is it: immigrants can be amazing people and are valuable human beings? Because that is what the story shows.

    What is tribal about that?

    Does Somerby think the story should have included a profile of a violent Latino immigrant gang member to balance out its portrayal of “immigrants”? Perhaps that would mollify the “Others.”

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think the balance would be made by portraying a villain. How about a mention of the huge numbers of struggling immigrants who don't make it to either extreme?

      Delete
    2. It isn't "extreme" for an immigrant to graduate high school, attend a middling college and become a teacher. Somerby makes a big fuss because he wants to portray immigrants as lacking success that is not that uncommon.

      Remember that this article is about one local school district where this happened. Aguilar isn't the only one in the country who did this, just the only one in that local district. He is unusual because he left at age 13 and came to the US on his own, not because he did well in school and became a teacher. He was likely to become something, as most immigrant children grow up and do.

      Delete
    3. He [Aguilar] was likely to become something,....

      I give up. Can't argue with logic like that.

      Delete
    4. Lots of immigrant success stories in lots of occupational fields and someone with the grit to come to the USA alone at age 13, can surely succeed in one of them, as immigrants routinely do in our country. That opportunity to succeed with hard work is why immigrants still come here.

      For Somerby to claim that his success must be mistaken, an exaggeration, a lie, is wrong.

      I wish you would give up.

      Delete
    5. But he doesn't claim Aguilar's success is "mistaken" (Do you mean misstated?) He actually claims

      Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story.

      I'm open to an argument that TDH doesn't believe that and what he gives with a statement on one hand, he takes with a statement on the other. But you don't get to say that TDH claims the opposite of what he actually claims.

      Delete
    6. ' But you don't get to say that TDH claims the opposite of what he actually claims.'


      Of course I do, since TDH does that all the time. For his heroes: DJT, Roy Moore, Ron Johnson, Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes, he claims they are not lying. For liberals, he attacks and misstates.

      Delete
  11. There is a certain irony when Somerby claims that the media, when not praising our schools, portray our schools as a failure; he implies that this is a slap in the face to teachers.

    But he himself describes the achievement gaps as horrible or horrific or some such melodramatic word.

    He himself is thereby describing a failure of the schools.

    How does his discussion of the gaps not represent a description of failure, which could just as well be seen as a slap in the face to our teachers?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Here is Steve Benen, who writes the Rachel Maddow Blog, on April 24, 2015, defending Clinton from the Uranium One attack:

    http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/it-looks-bribery-actually-it-doesnt

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dembot, of course it's bribery. Why do you think a Russian bank would pay Bubba $500K? For sharing his infinite wisdom?

      Delete
    2. Trump hands the economy to Wall Street, and Mao calls him "Donald the Great".

      Delete
  13. Maddow is a POS fake news liar:

    Rachel Maddow’s Defense: On-air Statements Shouldn’t Be Considered Fact

    https://www.bizpacreview.com/2019/12/28/rachel-maddows-defense-to-oan-defamation-lawsuit-is-that-on-air-statements-shouldnt-be-considered-fact-869161

    She lies to her viewers. She's gross.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not only that, she stole her defense from Faux News.

      Delete
    2. dr. That point is not interesting, intelligent, logical or relevant.

      Delete
    3. I have a feeling that you missed my point, but you have to admit that my comment was worth at least what it cost you, right?

      Delete
  14. Both Mike Royko and Digby Diehl were editors of the Daily Bruin at UCLA before stepping into high profile writing jobs at major newspapers. Should we have assumed them incompetent because of that?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you sure? I didn't think Royko ever went to college. In any case, Royko spent a decade in the trenches of Chicago political reporting before he had a daily column. He didn't "step into" a high-profile writing job at the Chicago Daily News.

      Delete
    2. I appear to be mistaken. But this writer who Somerby mocks is spending her time in the trenches. She didn't step into a high profile job either.

      Delete
    3. It’s not so much that you “appear to be mistaken,” Sparky. It’s that you are mistaken. And if you knew anything about Mike Royko or read any of his work, you’d know how amusing your mistake was. But Royko was a Chicago kinda guy, and he’s been dead for over twenty years, so I can hardly blame you.

      The reporter whom TDH mentions, Hannah Natanson, is indeed spending her time in the trenches of her profession, and I agree that hers isn’t a “high profile” job. Why do you mention that? Who claims otherwise?

      TDH has a long-standing complaint that papers like the Times and the Post have a tradition of assigning tyros to the education beat, where — no surprise — they’re woefully unprepared. I think TDH’s contempt is reserved not for Natanson but for her employer.

      As always, YMMV.

      Delete
    4. "Why do you mention that? Who claims otherwise?"

      Somerby objects that she went to the NY Times, "right outta college." You don't do implication, but his objection implies that she should have worked her way up to the NY Times by doing some other job first.

      Somerby may object to how the NY Times assigns its reporters, but I really don't think that a human interest story about an immigrant who becomes a teacher has the same stature as a story about why Trump killed an Iranian General in Iraq, do you?

      Further, I believe that it is not necessary to have expertise in an area in order to report on it. You need to know how to ask questions and summarize the answers. Education issues are a good starting place for that, especially since she has recent experience in high school and college, which is more than an older reporter has. She has probably taken the NAEP.

      Somerby's disrespect for Natanson, his repeated suggestion that she may not be accurate about Aguilar, is part of his ongoing attack on education, not just the NY Times. His insistence that Natanson must be unfit to report on education after receiving an education at a top university is ridiculous. She could have been doing any number of jobs carrying more responsibility and requiring more intelligence than reporting, had she chosen a different career path upon graduation.

      And while we're at it, there are people with a great deal less education and training, not to mention intelligence, working in high level jobs in Trump's administration. Start with Giuliani's son.

      If Somerby's contempt were reserved for the NY Times, he would have said so. Instead he pours vitriol on Natanson and Aguilar (who must have been hired in error by his school district, since the NY Times was lying about his qualifications).

      Delete
    5. Somerby objects that she went to the NY Times, "right outta college." You don't do implication, but his objection implies that she should have worked her way up to the NY Times by doing some other job first.

      Part of your problem may be that you don’t understand the difference between implication and inference. Writers (like TDH) state some things outright and mean other things not stated explicitly. That last is implication. Readers (like the two of us) try to discern what’s implied. That’s inference.

      I do implication; I do inference. We all do. Human communication being what it is, sometimes we’re right, and sometime we’re wrong. So it always pays to be careful. And you’re not.

      You opine that

      Somerby objects that she went to the NY Times, "right outta college.” (Emphasis mine.)

      But that’s demonstrably not true. What TDH actually says is

      She graduated from Harvard this past June, having prepped at Georgetown Day before that. At the Post, this qualified her to become "a reporter covering education and K-12 schools in Virginia,” right straight outta college.

      So the stated objection is not to her hiring, as you claimed, but to her assignment to education stories.

      You go on to say that

      [TDH’s] objection implies that she should have worked her way up to the NY Times by doing some other job first.

      Perhaps you’re right about the way TDH really feels, but I’m not inclined to trust your judgment on that. For one, you get TDH’s actual statement correct. For two, you can’t even get the newspaper right. Natanson works for WaPo, not the NYT.

      I really don't think that a human interest story about an immigrant who becomes a teacher has the same stature as a story about why Trump killed an Iranian General in Iraq, do you?

      Thanks for sharing. Why is this relevant?

      Further, I believe that it is not necessary to have expertise in an area in order to report on it. You need to know how to ask questions and summarize the answers.

      Of course it’s not necessary, as it’s done all the time. It’s how beginners learn on the job. But it’s necessary to report well. People who lack expertise are less likely to even know the right questions to ask. Is your animus toward TDH so great that you’re now endorsing ignorance on the job?

      Education issues are a good starting place for that, especially since she has recent experience in high school and college, which is more than an older reporter has. She has probably taken the NAEP.

      Education issues are most definitely not a good starting place. Education is a tricky patch of societal, historical, and statistical issues. And you think being a recent student and having recently taken a standardized exam gives you any insight into educational policy and testing controversies? Are you kidding me with this?

      And while we're at it, there are people with a great deal less education and training, not to mention intelligence, working in high level jobs in Trump's administration. Start with Giuliani's son.

      This is as irrelevant to the discussion as it is undisputed. Try to focus.

      If Somerby's contempt were reserved for the NY Times, he would have said so.

      You mean the Post in this instance, and he does say so. Over and over and over….

      Instead he pours vitriol on Natanson and Aguilar (who must have been hired in error by his school district, since the NY Times was lying about his qualifications).

      You have a very low threshold for vitriol, if you count the questioning of a reporter’s qualifications.

      You have to be able to walk before you can run. What I mean is that you have to get straight what somebody actually says before you can reliably discern what they imply. And you can’t get the simplest things straight. Here’s what TDH actually says about Aguilar:

      Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story.

      Delete
    6. Unless you want to argue that the Washington Post has more stature than the NY Times, mixing up the newspaper has no impact on the point, Somerby's or mine. But that kind of gotcha is your game here. Even Somerby can't get those things right, calling Hanford Hanover because he too doesn't go back and check. Some things are a big waste of time when such details are extraneous to the point at hand.

      Do you seriously consider education issues more complicated than energy policy or taxation or local politics? I don't. You can ask the people you are interviewing about education without worrying that you are being manipulated.

      The vitriol was about whether the details of Aguilar's success story were correct or exaggerated.

      As I have pointed out many times before, Somerby always covers himself by making these kinds of obligatory statements. In this context, such a statement, juxtaposed with three different remarks about Natanson's accuracy, implies that Aguilar's story is so remarkable as to be unbelievable. But you don't do implication. You quote this statement as if it should be taken at face value when Somerby is clearly saying he doesn't believe Aguilar's story. Because actual Einstein's are so infrequent as to almost never occur, which is Somerby's point about Natanson. He clearly thinks she should have been more suspicious (as Somerby is) about an immigrant boy who didn't speak English or Spanish at age 13 yet earned high grades in H.S., went to college and became a teacher. Shouldn't the evidence be the hiring of Aguilar by his district? Somerby is shitting on immigrants and their success without any evidence whatsoever that there were any factual inaccuracies in Natanson's story.

      If you cannot see past the trivial details to the point of Somerby's post, you are no one to be telling other they cannot read.

      Delete
    7. Mixing up the newspaper has no impact on the point, Somerby's or mine. But that kind of gotcha is your game here.

      You’re right. The error doesn’t matter for the point you were trying and failing to make. But it’s a telling detail: you can’t seem to get the simplest facts straight. You gotcha self here.

      Even Somerby can't get those things right, calling Hanford Hanover….
      He’s usually right on these matters. You don’t have that kind of cover.

      Some things are a big waste of time when such details are extraneous to the point at hand.

      You excuse is noted.

      Do you seriously consider education issues more complicated than energy policy or taxation or local politics? I don’t.

      I don’t know how to answer that question. They’re each complicated in their own way. What you do or don’t consider is beside the point, which is that good reporting relies on familiarity with the subject reported on.

      You can ask the people you are interviewing about education without worrying that you are being manipulated.

      You can ask, but if you don’t know your subject, you can’t trust the people you’re interviewing. There’s an old saying in journalism, “If your mother tells you she loves you, check it out.” And that assumes that you know how.

      The vitriol was about whether the details of Aguilar's success story were correct or exaggerated.

      Do you know what the word vitriol means?

      As I have pointed out many times before, Somerby always covers himself by making these kinds of obligatory statements. In this context, such a statement, juxtaposed with three different remarks about Natanson's accuracy, implies that Aguilar's story is so remarkable as to be unbelievable.

      Sorry, I count one doubtful statement. Here are four more statements from TDH:

      1. American history is full of remarkable immigrant stories, stories crafted by truly remarkable people.

      2. In Natanson's telling, immigrant kids at T.C. Williams are gaining from Aguilar's presence at a teacher…. Almost surely, that is true.

      3.Aguilar's is a truly remarkable success story.

      4. These children, and their parents, are often the bravest and best—the architects of the nation's future.

      If you think, based on nothing but faith in your mind reading abilities, that every such statement of belief is just an obligatory lie, then you’re justified in ascribing anything at all to TDH, and you’re just lost in your own prejudices.

      But you don't do implication.

      I don’t do unwarranted inference. Or at least I try not to.

      You quote this statement as if it should be taken at face value

      How else should you take the four statements I quoted above? If you refuse to take anything TDH writes at face value, then you don’t need to read him, do you? You can just substitute your own version.

      when Somerby is clearly saying he doesn't believe Aguilar's story.

      But he clearly and plainly says the opposite. Now he may say other things that undercut what he states outright, and you’re free to make that case. But you can’t accurately say that he plainly says the opposite of what he plainly says.

      , which is Somerby's point about Natanson. He clearly thinks she should have been more suspicious (as Somerby is) about an immigrant boy ….Somerby is shitting on immigrants and their success without any evidence whatsoever that there were any factual inaccuracies in Natanson's story.

      TDH is a skeptic about heroic stories in papers like the Times and the Post. They’re fooled often enough. But that hardly constitutes “shitting on immigrants,” especially in light of what he actually says about immigrants.

      If you cannot see past the trivial details to the point of Somerby's post, you are no one to be telling other they cannot read.

      The trick here is to marshal all the evidence. If you give yourself the license to dismiss every point contrary to your thesis, you’re just playing tennis without the net.

      Delete
  15. 'How did Donald Trump reach the Oval'

    Because of the support of Trumptards like TDH.

    ReplyDelete
  16. A Mayan language that is spoken by 1/2 million people isn't a dead language. A half million people are a lot of people. Mexico is full of such languages, as is the rest of Central America. People who haven't traveled think that Spanish is the only language spoken throughout Central and South America. That leads to the erroneous belief that countries are monolingual and that all people should speak whatever the national language happens to be. In fact, most countries worldwide have many languages with one "official" language designated for public purposes. Belgium has Flemish and French. Switzerland has three languages. The UK has Welsh and Scottish in addition to English. There is nothing amazing about a young boy speaking his area's native language before coming to the US.

    ReplyDelete
  17. “Rachel’s latest con”

    Whether Somerby’s description of Rachel’s most recent behavior meets the definition of a “con”, it is surely an oversight for him to rarely, if ever, critique the performances of the interviewers on the abysmal Sunday programs, such as Somerby’s “old friend” Chuck Todd, or Stephanopoulos. These shows frequently feature high-powered guests, including top Republicans. These are the programs where they get to lie in the mainstream media without much pushback, and where Democratic politicians are often treated much more harshly than their GOP counterparts. These programs quite possibly do more damage than Rachel’s show, since she is not engaged in collusion with right-wing guests to manipulate public perception, and the Sunday shows pretend to an appearance of non-partisanship.

    The few times Somerby ever mentions Meet The Press, he has taken the Republicans’ side, such as John Kennedy or Ron Johnson, when they were clearly lying through their teeth.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please quote TDH where he has "taken the side" of John Kennedy or Ron Johnson. TIA

      Delete
    2. Somerby said, 10/7/2019:
      “Johnson doesn't trust the FBI or the CIA!”

      “JOHNSON (10/6/19): I don't trust those guys”

      “Johnson said he doesn't trust power. We can't swear that he should.”

      A careful review of the transcript reveals that Somerby is wrong about what Johnson said. Somerby quoted a single line of Johnson, out of context, and helpfully paraphrases what he said—except Somerby’s paraphrase is not what Johnson meant.

      Here is the full transcript excerpt, including the sentence Somerby quoted:

      “CHUCK TODD: You don't trust them now? Do you trust them now?
      SEN. RON JOHNSON: No, I d-- I didn't trust 'em back then.
      CHUCK TODD:And you don't trust them now?
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:I-- I do not trust John Brennan. I do not trust--
      CHUCK TODD:Do you trust the CIA--
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:--th-- s-- Lisa Page--
      CHUCK TODD:--and FBI now-- because-- none of them have--
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:Andrew McCabe--
      CHUCK TODD:--come to any of the conclusions--
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:--I don't trust those guys.
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:
      W-- now, who're you talking about?
      CHUCK TODD:The CIA and the FBI.
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:I don't trust Andrew McCabe.
      CHUCK TODD:Do you trust the C--
      SEN. RON JOHNSON:I don't trust Andrew McCabe. I don't trust James Comey. I don't trust Pe--Peter Strzok. I don't trust John Brennan.

      That is not the same thing as not trusting the CIA or FBI.

      Somerby pretends that Johnson “doesn’t trust power”, which he claims is a reasonable stance. But that isn’t what Johnson said. What Johnson said is “I didn’t trust them *back then*”, and lists various Obama admin people. He did *not* say “I don’t trust power.”

      That is Somerby putting a reasonable statement of principle into the mouth of an unprincipled liar shilling for Trump. And that amounts to a defense of a lying fraud from Somerby.

      Delete
    3. Not to mention that Ron Johnson has funded the CIA and FBI fully under various bills, with narry a peep.

      Somerby is a defender of Ron Johnson, DJT, Roy Moore, Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes, in short a Trumptard, mind, body and soul.

      Delete
    4. Fercryanoutloud, how do you even get through an ordinary day? The story is about a right-wing ideologue who trusted the spooks until they came up with information he didn't like. Perhaps he should have been skeptical all along, no matter who was in charge, eh? This is hardly "support," except of course in the fever swamp of your cluelessness.

      Delete
    5. deadrat, you’re the clueless one. Somerby also defended the shit from Sen Kennedy about Ukrainian interference in the election. Somerby isn’t stupid enough to fall for the obvious lies and propaganda emanating from these GOP bag men, is he? He chooses to pretend they are making reasoned arguments when they are not. Their bs must be judged in the context of Trump’s lies and the abject defense of them from toadies like Kennedy and Johnson. Heaven help you if you can’t admit the wrongness of Somerby’s defense of the indefensible.

      Delete
    6. I can’t tell me one Anonymous from another, so I’m just gonna assume you’re all the same.

      OK, so you’re not prepared to defend your claim that TDH is supporting Kennedy when he, TDH, points out Kennedy’s new-found skepticism about our intelligence apparat.

      Now you’ve shifted to the claim that TDH is defending Kennedy’s assertion about Ukrainian interference. Sorry, but you’re gonna have to quote TDH to that effect. Your claim; your burdens of production and proof.

      I’m sorry that I don’t trust (any of) your maunderings about you think TDH might have meant. What did he actually write?

      Delete
  18. According to TDH, that was not the story. The story was that 'we liberals' were at fault because we did not share the right wing ideologues bogus concern.

    Prior to that blog post defending Johnson, one might be able to claim with perhaps 5% credibility that Somerby was not a Trumptard, just a 'useless idiot'. After that blog, it's clear that Somerby is a Trumptard dedicating to defending Trump and his minions.

    ReplyDelete
  19. This is to inform the general public that individuals can now purchase Dangote Cement in the ongoing bag of goodies promo for 1,3OO Naira per bag and 5Okg bag of rice also for 1O,OOO each.This is only for customers buying a minimum of 1OO bags,truck load of 6OO and 9OO bags with nationwide delivery within 2days of booking.Also get your foreign used EXCAVATOR,TIPPER TRUCK,DREDGER & CONCRETE MIXER at the best prices and with a high performance quality.Contact the marketing manager(Alhaji Jubril Abubakar) on 0701-660-7060 today for your booking.PLEASE SHARE AND TELL OTHERS OF THIS OPPORTUNITY.

    ReplyDelete
  20. “teachers at T.C. Williams were saving Aguilar during the years when our upper-end newspapers were full of complaints about the way nothing was working in our public schools, thanks in large part to our slacker teachers with their ratty unions?”

    “We "liberals!" Ever since the 1960s, we've been pretending that those gaps just can't be that large.”

    “We're currently making ourselves feel good by pretending that we can "desegregate" our way out of our gaps while discussing nothing else.”

    These statements are not true.

    Somerby can hate liberals all he wants, but he does have an obligation to tell the truth.

    ReplyDelete
  21. My name is SHERRY WALJER from USA Massachusetts, i want to testify to the general public how my relationship was restored back by the great power's of Dr Larry after three months of loneliness, my ex-lover called me after my contact with Dr Larry that he want us to come back and start a good home, now we are happily together again as lovers. All thanks to Dr Larry who did a love spell for me for my ex lover to return home. I will keep sharing this until people who also need help see this for his wonderful help. You can contact him on his via email assurancesolutionhome@gmail. com or whatsapp him on +2348102316854     website  http://assurancesolutionhome.website2.me/  




    My name is SHERRY WALJER from USA Massachusetts, i want to testify to the general public how my relationship was restored back by the great power's of Dr Larry after three months of loneliness, my ex-lover called me after my contact with Dr Larry that he want us to come back and start a good home, now we are happily together again as lovers. All thanks to Dr Larry who did a love spell for me for my ex lover to return home. I will keep sharing this until people who also need help see this for his wonderful help. You can contact him on his via email assurancesolutionhome@gmail. com or whatsapp him on +2348102316854     website  http://assurancesolutionhome.website2.me/  

    ReplyDelete
  22. A real spell caster that brought back my ex-husband in just 11 hours, dr unity is indeed a real and honest love spell caster. I'm Tracy Mattingly from united state, I'm so excited my husband is back after he left me for another woman. My husband was having an affair with a co-worker and i love my husband so much but he was cheating on me with his co-worker and this girl i think use witchcraft or black magic on my husband to make him hate me and this was so critical and uncalled-for, I cry all day and night for God to send me a helper to bring back my husband! I was really upset and i needed help, so i searched for help online and I came across a website that suggested that Dr Unity can help get ex-boyfriend back fast. So, I felt I should give him a try. I contacted him and he told me what to do and i did it, then he did a love spell for me. 11hours later, my husband really called me and told me that he miss me so much, Oh My God! i was so happy, and today i am happy with my man again and we are joyfully living together and i thank the powerful spell caster Dr.Unity, he is so powerful and i decided to share my story on the here. if you are here and your Lover is turning you down, or your husband moved to another woman, do not cry anymore, contact Dr.Unity for help now..Here’s his contact Email him at: Unityspelltemple@gmail.com or Call/Whats-app: +2348055361568 ,website:https://drunity.simplesite.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hi everybody. I recently saw a testimony about chief dr lucky in a blog I visit for relationship and dating counseling problems because i had been having serious issues with my boyfriend and we had been dating for six months, he just suddenly changed, he wasn't returning my calls,he started cheating,he was hurting me in many ways i never thought possible and I just thought I should try it*maybe out of desperation of some sort*..and I contacted chief dr lucky ..At first everything felt dreamy and unbelievable, his consultations and solution was a little bit easy and strange and I was scared a little cause I heard read and heard lots of stories to of fake spell casters,scams and i never really believed in magic..I played along with a little hope and and faith and I sent some few stuffs after everything and it worked like a miracle,everything went to a while new direction,it was and is amazing...I guess it was all good faith that made me read That particular post that faithful day..I hope he could help other people too like he did me...I did a little and I got everything I wanted and wished for*my husband,my family and my life back. E-mail: Cheifdrlucky@gmail.com or contact him on whats App him +2348132777335 Website :http://chiefdrluckysolutionhome.website2.me/  

    ReplyDelete
  24. My Name is Dr sebi you can Contact Me via Email drsebicurecenter@gmail.com For Penis Enlargement Product to help you get as long as 8inches Long with good Erection. Contact Me Via Email : drsebicurecenter@gmail.com   Via WhatsApp +2347010538590

    ReplyDelete
  25. Grateful to Dr LOSA for all his help for my life, my partner was having Herpes Simplex Virus, and we were planing on getting married on early December, when we decided to get ourselves tested first and we found out that my Girlfriend was HSV 2 Positive, my Girlfriend was so unhappy, because this was a barrier for us to get married, so i went out to search out a remedy for my partner, and it was so surprising how Dr LOSA has been a blessing and healing to the masses, after reading about his work on a blog i immediately emailed him: dr.losaherbalhome@gmail . com and he wrote back to me that my Girlfriend will be OK and that we we get married this same year, i couldn't believe it, after doing all that is needed to be done, i was surprise that after 2weeks of using his medicine my Girlfriend went to the doc and was diagnose negative. For more info contact his

    Whatsapp 2349056464736.OR

    email dr.losaherbalhome@gmail . com and you will get your illness cure and also beware of scams Good Luck

    He cure listed diseases

    CANCER

    HEPATITIS A AND B

    DIABETIC.

    HERPES

    https://drlosaherbslhome.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  26. My Name is Dr sebi you can Contact Me via Email drsebicurecenter@gmail.com For Penis Enlargement Product to help you get as long as 8inches Long with good Erection. Contact Me Via Email : drsebicurecenter@gmail.com Via WhatsApp +2347010538590

    ReplyDelete
  27. I want to use this medium to testify of how i got back my ex husband after divorce, i and my husband have been married for 8 years with 2 kids, we have been a happy family. Last year his behavior towards me and the kids changed, i suspected he was meeting another woman outside out marriage, any time i confronted him, he threatened to divorce me, i did all i could to make hings right but all to no avail until i saw a post on a "love and relationship forum" about a spell caster who helps people to cast spell on marriage and relationship issues, when i contacted this spell caster via email, he helped me cast a re-union spell and my husband changed and came apologizing to me and the kids. Contact this great spell caster for your relationship or marriage issues via this email: chiefdrlucky@gmail.com or Whats App him on +2348132777335 Website : http://chiefdrluckysolutionhome.website2.me/ Good luck  

    ReplyDelete
  28. Good day to all viewer online am so happy sharing this great testimony on how i was checking for solution in the internet then miraculously i came Across Dr.LOSA the powerful herbalist that Cure Numerous individuals Herpes Simplex Virus,so I contacted him base on the testimonies I?m seeing about him on the internet, I was cured too by him, kindly contact him actoday through his email he can help you email ; dr.losaherbalhome@gmail.com and so he can cure types of diseases like,HEPATITIS B,DIABETICS,CANCER,HPV,LOW SPERM CAM HIV/STDS FIBROSIS LOST OF WEIGHT .. all thank to you Dr LOSA for your kindly help in my life his Mobile number +2349056464736

    He cure listed diseases
    CANCER
    HEPATITIS A AND B
    DIABETIC.
    HERPES

    ReplyDelete