THE WOKE AND THE BUSED: Little girl found!

MONDAY, JULY 1, 2019

Brave hopeful announces "support:"
The topic arrived on the front page of this morning's New York Times.

We refer to the busing program introduced in the Berkeley Public Schools in 1968.

Years later, a little girl numbered among the bused—one who finds many comments hurtful—would announce that, even today, she "support[s] busing as a method for school integration," though "the campaign declined to provide additional information."

Those early statements were rather murky. But so it goes when a failing nation keeps getting conned by the slick and the bused.

Our failing nation keeps getting conned by both the woke and the dumb. Along that same general line, consider one part of today's front-page report.

The report was written by Nellie Bowles, a youngish, well-regarded reporter whose background lies in technology reporting, not in reporting about public schools (Columbia, class of 2010.)

Silicon Valley lies close to Berkeley; perhaps for that reason, the Times gave Bowles the assignment. In no way is this the fault or the doing of Bowles, but the Times has never seemed to regard education as a specialty requiring specialized knowledge.

Bowles' front-page report runs almost 2000 words. Early on, she has some trouble explaining the classic distinction between de jure and de facto "segregation" in the public schools.

Eventually, though—in paragraph 41!—Bowles drops a bit of a bomb. If you read all the way to the end of today's report, you finally get to read this:
BOWLES (7/1/19): Berkeley voted to phase out its original busing program in 1994, but still has integration initiatives in place. Busing has largely been seen as a failed effort: Across the country today, schools are still segregated, and the number of intensely segregated schools is growing.
"Busing has largely been seen as a failed effort," Bowles says, 1800 words in. And how odd! She says Berkeley "still has integration initiatives in place," but she seems to say that busing isn't numbered among them!

Is it true that busing, even when voluntary, has come to be seen as a failed effort? That would be interesting if true, because elsewhere in the New York Times, we'd already seemed to learn that the candidate who finds so many statements so hurtful still supports the practice today!

("After her exchange with Mr. Biden on Thursday night, a Harris spokesman said that she supported busing as a method for school integration, but the campaign declined to provide additional information." So wrote the New York Times' Astead Herndon in this earlier news report.)

Those early statements declaring "support" for busing were perhaps a tiny bit vague. Last night, though, it finally happened! Candidate Hurtful began to pretend to flesh out her brave bold stand herself.

After trashing Candidate Biden, the hopeful has finally begun to flesh out her own stand. Last evening, she said and tweeted this:
CANDIDATE HARRIS (6/30/19): I support busing. Listen, the schools of America are as segregated, if not more segregated, today than when I was in elementary school. And we need to put every effort, including busing, into play to desegregate the schools.
There's more to what the hopeful said; you can read her fuller statement here. Quickly, though, a bit of clarification:

Everyone, including the floundering Biden, "supports busing" in the general, basically meaningless sense contained in that first part of Harris' remarks. If some community somewhere decided to use busing to "desegregate" its public schools, no Democratic politician would ever object.

Harris went on to say that the federal government "has a role to play in ensuring equality." But when it comes to busing and schools, she absent-mindedly forgot to say just what that role actually is!

Our question would be this:

What does Candidate Harris actually propose as she takes her brave stand? It's been a long time since the federal government ordered school districts to bus kids around for this type of purpose. So what exactly is Harris proposing? And why won't this bravest of pols simply describe her bold stand?

Candidate Harris is sufficiently woke to tell us that the public schools are even more "segregated" now than they were back in the day. With that in mind, we'd love to know why she hasn't advanced some brave, important busing proposals before this point in time.

Our guess on that would be simple—the candidate has no such proposals, and is perhaps involved in a tiny small bit of a fraud. For ourselves, we're sick of putting up with this kind of mess, and anthropologists largely support us.

Yesterday, we spent a chunk of time reading comments on-line (click for reader comments here). We were struck by how tragically woke so many of our political teammates are—so woke, and yet so uninformed and perhaps just a tiny bit dumb.

Often confused, but never in doubt! So their comments seemed.

Our vastly self-impressed liberal team has been playing this way for a very long time. Future experts huddled in caves have told us this didn't end well.

Tomorrow: Uh-oh! What Willie Brown instantly said


  1. "For ourselves, we're sick of putting up with this kind of mess"

    Why don't you quit your liberal zombie cult, dear Bob? Are they blackmailing you or something?

    "Yesterday, we spent a chunk of time reading comments on-line [...]. We were struck by how tragically woke so many of our political teammates are—so woke, and yet so uninformed and perhaps just a tiny bit dumb."

    Most of them are mere dembots, and some are zombies. And no one else is allowed to comment there.

    Yes, do you realize, dear Bob, that they aggressively sanitize their comment threads, banning human commenters and disappearing their comments?

    After all, it's a cult. Totalitarian liberal cult.

  2. There are other ways to achieve desegregation besides busing. Each school district might choose the approach that makes the most sense for their community. It is ridiculous to expect Harris to have a single one-size-fits-all plan to achieve desegregation. It is what the Department of Education should be investigating and supporting, but we all know that is not happening in Trump's administration.

    Somerby says that Berkeley's busing did not achieve desegregation. He says it is a failed approach. Kamala Harris said that it worked FOR HER. It may have helped countless other black (and white) children over time. It has not achieved desegregation, defined quantitatively using the statistics Somerby loves, but it may have helped individual kids and that is not nothing, not a failure. Somerby's goals for busing may be unrealistic and basically unachievable. That doesn't mean children shouldn't be bused or attend magnet schools or be sorted differently due to redistricting, or whatever other approach a district may take. Because individual kids are important too.

    Somerby today calls Harris "slick". I get it that he doesn't like Harris and wants to knock down her candidacy. He doesn't tell us who he prefers, nor does he give us Bernie's position on desegregation, nor anyone else's. That's most likely because democrats support desgregation, even using busing, and that is why Biden's divergent position has attracted attention, made him a target during this past debate.

    1. Wikipedia says:

      Kamala Harris was born on October 20, 1964, in Oakland, California, to a Tamil Indian mother and a Jamaican father. Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, was a breast cancer scientist who immigrated to the United States from Madras (present-day Chennai) in 1960. Her father, Donald Harris, is a Stanford University economics professor who emigrated from Jamaica in 1961 for graduate study in economics at University of California, Berkeley....

      Harris began kindergarten during the second year of Berkeley's school desegregation busing program, which pioneered the extensive use of busing to bring racial balance to each of the city's public schools; a bus took her to a school which two years earlier had been 95% white. Her parents divorced when she was seven, and her mother was granted custody of the children. After the divorce, when Harris was 12, her mother moved with the children to Montreal, Qu├ębec, Canada, where Shyamala accepted a position doing research at Jewish General Hospital and teaching at McGill University. Harris was enrolled at a neighborhood school for native French speakers.

      Given all that, maybe it was the busing which was the decisive factor in Harris's development during her formative years. Surely it would have been upsetting for Harris to be told by a neighbor child, in the low income black neighborhood where she was growing up, that the neighbor child wouldn't play with her because she was black (or did that happen in Canada?).

      The question for 10:49 AM is in what way is Biden's position "divergent" from Harris's? Does Harris favor federally mandated busing to overcome de facto school segregation where it exists for public grade schools today -say in the California Bay Area- or does she not favor federally mandated busing to overcome that phenomenon where it is a result of racial residential housing patterns?

    2. CMike, maybe you ought to ask Bernie what his support for busing and integration means. It’s an important component of his “Marshall” plan for education. Maybe he can team up with Harris to implement it.

    3. Bernie's position on busing doesn't diverge from the mainstream Democratic view, Bernie says LINK:

      "Busing is certainly an option that is necessary in certain cases, but it is not optimal.... Does anybody think it's a good idea to put a kid on a bus, travel an hour to another school and to another neighborhood that he or she doesn't know? That's not the optimal. What is the optimal is to have great community schools which are integrated, that's what I think most people want to see. That's what I want to see."

  3. Willie Brown drove that bus. That's how this enraged mess became the Democrat frontrunner.

  4. Somerby’s obsession with Kamala Harris is puzzling. She has only recently, since the debate, risen to serious contender status as a candidate. But his attacks on her began when she was still languishing in single digit polling territory. Just yesterday, he said, inexplicably, that she was his choice for the nomination, yet he continues to mock and denigrate her today, calling her Candidate Hurtful. He also said in a recent post that progressives should be disgusted with a candidate like Harris. (

    Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders, still a serious contender, made a major speech in May about what he calls his “Thurgood Marshall” plan for education, which includes re-invigorated support for integration efforts, including busing. Somerby said not one word about Sanders’ speech, his plan, or his debate performance. Odd, since Somerby has declared that he likes Sanders’ politics. (

    This is all to point out that Harris is not an outlier amongst Dem candidates, and yet Somerby has decided to use about 50% of his blog to single her out and attack her relentlessly, while claiming she is his choice for the nomination. (

    One has to wonder at someone like Somerby who claims to have clear and strong progressive principles and yet is willing to choose a candidate that he feels betrays those principles. Why not choose someone you actually like? Is he just bummed that Biden hasn’t turned out to be a strong contender?

    It’s also noteworthy that Somerby fails to examine any of the mainstream media’s standard messaging that is already being trotted out to undermine Democrats and Democratic candidates, but then, he abandoned that a while ago.

    1. Bernie or bust. It's what I did last time and what I'll do again.

    2. "Bernie was that little girl!"

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