Author Topic: 2020 Elections  (Read 17599 times)

marshwiggle

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #15 on: June 24, 2019, 06:56:01 AM »

It's really nice that people care about social issues, but POTUS isn't actually directly in charge of many of those areas.  POTUS is commander in chief and the top diplomat.

Speaking from north of the border, a leader can still cry and apologize a lot, even without being directly in charge. It may not change anything, but gets lots of press.
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polly_mer

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #16 on: June 24, 2019, 07:10:01 AM »

It's really nice that people care about social issues, but POTUS isn't actually directly in charge of many of those areas.  POTUS is commander in chief and the top diplomat.

Speaking from north of the border, a leader can still cry and apologize a lot, even without being directly in charge. It may not change anything, but gets lots of press.

Yes, it gets lots of press because we'd rather be entertained in our daily lives instead of being informed citizens who know why Sweden has an official policy of no surrender that they have been publicizing for the past year after recently reimplementing the draft.  I can list off many other currentish world events that scare me a hell of a lot more and make me worry for my child far more than much of the handwringing about what Trump tweeted this week that was uncouth or unpleasant for people standing right next to him.

I worry much more about the lack of senior diplomats in the State Department and a continuing turnover in the DOD that really could change life as we know it for the dramatically worse.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2019, 07:13:59 AM by polly_mer »
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Puget

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #17 on: June 27, 2019, 08:20:18 PM »
Watched both nights of debates--

I thought Harris totally killed tonight-- she is super effective at presenting policy in a way that is impassioned and personal but still coming across as totally controlled and smart as hell. Her schooling of Biden on segregation was something to behold. I liked her before, but I have no doubt at all now she's who I want facing Trump.

Last night I was most impressed by Castro. He won't be the nominee but made a good case for VP or running for senate. Warren was fine, but didn't really change my impression that she's not quite the right candidate for the current moment.
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mahagonny

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #18 on: June 27, 2019, 09:59:35 PM »
Watched both nights of debates--

I thought Harris totally killed tonight-- she is super effective at presenting policy in a way that is impassioned and personal but still coming across as totally controlled and smart as hell. Her schooling of Biden on segregation was something to behold. I liked her before, but I have no doubt at all now she's who I want facing Trump.


Oh yeah, Biden is totally a racist. That's what made those eight years of the Obama presidency to stressful for liberals.

[End sarcasm]

Reading a little about Kamala. She says this on her webpages:

"Every child deserves a world-class education, regardless of their ZIP code. Of all in-school factors that impact their success, there’s nothing more important than our teachers. That’s a fact. But we’re not acting like it. In America today, there’s a drastic teacher pay gap—and it’s growing. Public school teachers earn 11 percent less than similar professionals, teachers are more likely than non-teachers to work a second job, and the average teacher makes $1,000 less than 30 years ago.

The teacher pay gap is a national failure that’s holding America back. From city schools in major urban centers, to rural schools like those in South Carolina’s “Corridor of Shame,” we’ve failed to give teachers the respect and resources they deserve. It’s time for a bold, national response.

So let’s speak the truth: America’s teachers are drastically underpaid and they deserve a raise. That’s exactly what Kamala Harris intends to give them as President. We’ll make the largest investment in teachers in American history and provide the average teacher a $13,500 raise, entirely closing the teacher pay gap."

This is a pitch that could backfire on liberals. Being that the stronghold of liberalism, academia, runs on serf labor.

nebo113

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2019, 04:54:55 AM »
Not sure how to partial quote, but this is from polly_mer:   The best leader assembles a great team of experts and then listens to those experts. 

It was said that Teddy Kennedy wasn't the sharpest crayon in the Senate, but he had excellent staff.

Treehugger

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2019, 05:29:41 AM »
My favorite so far is Elizabeth Warren. I like her intelligence, her policies, her passion. But I think any of the candidates would make an acceptable president except for Yang or Williamson. But it’s not like that’s going to happen. Actually, I do have pretty strong anti-Biden sentiments (such a stale, lame choice), but if he were elected, I think he would be acceptable.



polly_mer

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2019, 06:08:34 AM »
"So let’s speak the truth: America’s teachers are drastically underpaid and they deserve a raise. That’s exactly what Kamala Harris intends to give them as President. We’ll make the largest investment in teachers in American history and provide the average teacher a $13,500 raise, entirely closing the teacher pay gap."
https://kamalaharris.org/teachers/ for those who want to read the rest of the statement including the plan. 

Again, I state that someone is running for the wrong office.  The POTUS has no direct control over local school systems and thus cannot follow through on a promised raise like this.  The plan as stated relies on sending money to states with significant strings attached to do it Kamala's way.  No mention is made of what happens when states decide the cost of dealing with the strings is more trouble than it is worth, as some states did with expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.  No mention is made about how to deal with the looming pension crisis for teachers in many states: https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnmauldin/2019/05/20/the-coming-pension-crisis-is-so-big-that-its-a-problem-for-everyone .  No mention is made of previous presidential efforts to affect K-12 change like Obama's Race to the Top (https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/issues/education/k-12/race-to-the-top).

No mention is made of what happens when it turns out the problem wasn't just being underpaid.  For example, many of the K-12 teachers who went on strike cited lack of support staff, terrible facilities, lack of supplies, and a growing bureaucratic burden for doing substantial weekly tasks that are unrelated to direct classroom instruction.  https://www.epi.org/publication/school-climate-challenges-affect-teachers-morale-more-so-in-high-poverty-schools-the-fourth-report-in-the-perfect-storm-in-the-teacher-labor-market-series/ puts some numbers on high-poverty schools related to teaching conditions: "In this paper, we look at the shares of teachers who face barriers that impede teaching (such as student poverty and poor student health), threats to their safety, a lack of voice and influence over school policy decisions, and a lack of autonomy in the classroom" (ibid).  A disturbing pattern in the data is how little gap there is between low-poverty schools and high-poverty schools in some areas reflecting many teachers being dissatisfied with teaching conditions even at low-poverty schools. 

No mention is made of the shortage by specialty since not all fields are experiencing shortages the same way.  The American Physical Society did a study related to the teacher shortage in certain STEM subjects and found that teaching conditions were a huge concern for students who didn't opt into teacher education programs in their area of STEM (https://www.aps.org/newsroom/pressreleases/stemeducation.cfm for the press release and https://www.aps.org/policy/reports/popa-reports/upload/POPASTEMReport.pdf). 

One caveat in the APS survey is the bias is probably towards propensity to teach based on how the samples were selected.  Even then, "The main concern about teaching is the worry of dealing with disrespectful, uncontrollable, or uninterested students. This concern showed up four times as often as the next-largest concern, which was low pay. Nearly tied with low pay were dislike for working with kids, and worries about lack of control over curriculum" (ibid, p. 11).

As for salary itself related to STEM teachers: "Lower salary is only one of the reasons that supplying qualified teachers for non-metropolitan areas poses special challenges. STEM teachers in rural areas can be responsible for teaching many different subjects, and find themselves a long distance from any professional support networks" (ibid, p. 12)

and

"Nevertheless, it is striking that students consistently underestimate what teachers actually earn, and when asked what they would want to earn as teachers, students indicate a desired salary very close to the current actual salary. Only in the case of computer science do students express an interest in higher salaries than the market is currently providing"(ibid, p. 15).  For those who didn't go read the report, the salaries being discussed are in the mid-50k to mid-60k dollars, still lower than the salaries for people using their degrees outside of academia in these fields (ibid, Figure 5 on p. 13) by perhaps as much as $25k.  This are averages that include mid-career, not starting salaries.

Again, focusing on what people think about the realties of the teaching job:"While non-teachers overwhelmingly singled out worries about uninterested, misbehaving students, this problem was not at the top of the list of actual teachers. The teachers were more concerned about hostile or nonresponsive school administration and excessive non-teaching activities" (ibid, p. 20).

So, yes, higher teacher pay in some locations may help with some recruitment and retention, but pay alone is not the overwhelming driver for teacher shortages.
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polly_mer

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2019, 06:11:24 AM »
Not sure how to partial quote

To partial quote, click quote on the post to have text show up in the editing box and then edit the text between the header and footer marked with quote in brackets.
Code: [Select]
[quote author=person...]
This is text.  You can do anything you like to it.

You can add, subtract, multiply, and divide.

[/quote]
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ciao_yall

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2019, 07:41:00 AM »
Not sure how to partial quote, but this is from polly_mer:   The best leader assembles a great team of experts and then listens to those experts. 

It was said that Teddy Kennedy wasn't the sharpest crayon in the Senate, but he had excellent staff.

This assumes that facts and data and policy are somehow neutral.

Take "Health Care for All." Everyone says that, right? So, how do we achieve this?

  • Free market solutions work best so get rid of all regulations and Medicare/Medicaid because these distort the market, drive up costs, and starve innovation.
  • Abolish all private insurance and payments. Just have Medicare for All with free prescriptions.

Strong arguments on both sides. Where your actual policy lands is not a function of objective reality, as much as we like to think it would.

mahagonny

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2019, 08:43:12 AM »
"So let’s speak the truth: America’s teachers are drastically underpaid and they deserve a raise. That’s exactly what Kamala Harris intends to give them as President. We’ll make the largest investment in teachers in American history and provide the average teacher a $13,500 raise, entirely closing the teacher pay gap."
https://kamalaharris.org/teachers/ for those who want to read the rest of the statement including the plan. 

Again, I state that someone is running for the wrong office.  The POTUS has no direct control over local school systems and thus cannot follow through on a promised raise like this.  The plan as stated relies on sending money to states with significant strings attached to do it Kamala's way.  No mention is made of what happens when states decide the cost of dealing with the strings is more trouble than it is worth, as some states did with expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Also no mention is made of the decision whether or not to accept the money and the conditions for getting it falling to someone who doesn't agree that teachers deserve more money. Who knows, someone may even think 'if they deserved more money, they would have it already, having made better life choices.'  But I like the idea of a presidential candidate saying we should give teachers more salary because they deserve it. Because you know, then we are thinking of them as people that we have relationships with, instead of something other than that.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2019, 08:51:13 AM by mahagonny »

kaysixteen

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #25 on: June 28, 2019, 10:28:25 AM »
Ultimately, it's easier to find bucks to pay teachers more than to deal with the structural problems that have allowed those kids to continue to behave poorly, or to deal with parasitic administrative bloat and related non teaching activities.  Most parents would probably prefer to pay more taxes than allow more discipline and more traditional behavior expectations to be put upon their kids.

polly_mer

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #26 on: June 28, 2019, 04:43:16 PM »
"So let’s speak the truth: America’s teachers are drastically underpaid and they deserve a raise. That’s exactly what Kamala Harris intends to give them as President. We’ll make the largest investment in teachers in American history and provide the average teacher a $13,500 raise, entirely closing the teacher pay gap."
https://kamalaharris.org/teachers/ for those who want to read the rest of the statement including the plan. 

Again, I state that someone is running for the wrong office.  The POTUS has no direct control over local school systems and thus cannot follow through on a promised raise like this.  The plan as stated relies on sending money to states with significant strings attached to do it Kamala's way.  No mention is made of what happens when states decide the cost of dealing with the strings is more trouble than it is worth, as some states did with expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Also no mention is made of the decision whether or not to accept the money and the conditions for getting it falling to someone who doesn't agree that teachers deserve more money. Who knows, someone may even think 'if they deserved more money, they would have it already, having made better life choices.'  But I like the idea of a presidential candidate saying we should give teachers more salary because they deserve it. Because you know, then we are thinking of them as people that we have relationships with, instead of something other than that.

Perhaps you'd like to look at the actual numbers.  Some teachers in some regions are indeed underpaid for what they do, the cost of living adjustments by region don't make up for the difference, and those teachers are unlikely to get the pensions they have been promised (the traditional argument for paying lower now for a guaranteed income in old age).  That's a time bomb waiting to explode, especially in rural areas where $35k doesn't go as far as it used to as the town dried up and medical care is a long drive away.  Housing may be cheap, but everything else becomes more expensive unless one grows one's own food and makes one's own entertainment.

Other teachers have moved to places that value education and fund it.  Some people who have been or could have been teachers opted out (that whole shortage of physics teachers) and thus already have the money they need by doing something else.
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mahagonny

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #27 on: June 30, 2019, 05:27:54 PM »
things will get interesting if black or other voters start complaining about Kamala Harris sending  so many to prison and death row while she takes full advantage of having some (less than 50% probably) African ancestry and calling out Joe Biden for his mixed record on civil rights and wants to campaign as a progressive on crime.
https://washingtonmonthly.com/2019/06/29/kamala-harris-has-some-explaining-to-do/

bioteacher

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #28 on: June 30, 2019, 06:42:41 PM »
It's too soon and not soon enough: I detest the 24/7 election cycle that begins as soon as the polls close.
I am sick to my stomach every time I open a newspaper website. Trump and company need to go yesterday. Mitch McConnell needs to crawl back into his shell and retire to a remote island. He can take all his buddies with him.

I like Warren because she has plans. They may be imperfect, but I greatly prefer that to, "Trust me, it will be great!"  Plans are a starting point. I have not followed it all closely, nor will I until my state gets to participate in the process.

At this point, I'll vote for my dog, a garden slug, or a potted plant before I vote for any Republican. This is not because I find Democrats inherently good, but because the current Republican party is doing irrevocable damage and I want to slow them down. If a nine-volt battery or a streaming cow turd ends up winning the Democratic nomination for POTUS, it gets my vote.

I want the concentration camps closed. I want immigrants to be welcomed. I want healthcare I can afford. I want my health care to include my eyes and my teeth. I want clean air to breathe and clean water to drink. I want my country to participate in the world and try to improve the life experience of every human being on the planet.

I don't believe these are radical or unreasonable expectations.

mahagonny

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Re: 2020 Elections
« Reply #29 on: June 30, 2019, 10:03:24 PM »
I want immigrants to be welcomed. I want healthcare I can afford. I want my health care to include my eyes and my teeth.

Combining all of this, I am posting a few questions that I ruminate over.
1.  Assuming we had unlimited money available to spend on scientific research and unlimited money and trained personnel with which to treat all health concerns for all people, would the the life expectancy of human beings continue to increase indefinitely and with it the total cost and labor spent on keeping each person alive for as long as possible?
2. Is that what we should try to do?
3. What role does religion play? I ask this as an agnostic in middle age, in only fair health, but a good enough livelihood (for the present anyway) and rewarding activities, with some equity to leave to my child, but no pressure from religion to have a responsibility to keep going. In other words, at some point, suicide should be a sensible option. It's win-win. Less expense and bother for everyone, and no hanging around in miserable shape for me. So, since we look to government to figure everything out, what should they do?
« Last Edit: June 30, 2019, 10:06:11 PM by mahagonny »