Friday, January 20, 2006

Agreed: An apology is in order

Boy, there's a storm in the RWB (Right Wing Blogosphere) over my post about the free, corporate-produced and paid commercial running on WTMJ-AM radio. Charlie Sykes calls it a blogswarm. Jessica McBride alone did her own blogswarm, being inspired to write 1,500 words.

The right-wingers are all over it and me, using terms like "free speech" and "fair comment" to defend what clearly is neither. They don't seem to be able to distinguish between this post on a WisOpinion blog, a newspaper editorial, and a commercial, which fits all of the definitions of issue advocacy, airing over and over on the state's largest radio station.

Worse yet, James Widgerson suggests I owe Sykes an apology.

Au contraire.

If there is any apology due anyone, it is an apology from Sykes to Jim Doyle, for equating him with two racist governors who tried to keep black students out of public schools.

Doyle has offered a reasonable compromise on this issue. The Republicans insist on an all-or-nothing approach.

It is the Republicans and their allies who are blocking the doorway and creating a crisis that does not have to exist.

It's not about the kids. It's about scoring cheap political points at any price, at the expense of Jim Doyle,who has been committed his entire life to the fight for racial equality. It's not lip service with Doyle; it's the way he's lived his life. As most people learned for the first time in the last governor's race, the Doyles have two African-American sons.

I guess that's probably one of the things that set me off when I heard what Sykes calls his "spot." Jim Doyle is the antithesis of a racist. But he is being portrayed as one, and it's not very subtle.

Hell, yes, there should be an apology. Sykes should apologize on the air to Jim Doyle.

While he's at it, maybe he should apologize to principled school choice supporters, like Howard Fuller, who really do care about the kids, and who would I am certain would never stoop to tactics like this. Fuller and others know Doyle is a decent man who happens to disagree with them on this issue, not a racist who's trying to hurt black children.

Sykes knows that, too, of course. But he doesn't care.

UPDATE: Sykes plays the race card.


At 12:16 PM, Blogger steveegg said...

If the shoe fits,....

At 12:25 PM, Blogger The CPA said...

My question is if Sykes would be as passionate as he is about school choice IF it were extended to let these poor kids go to the school district where he lives? After all, doesn't everyone deserve a great school like Nicolet?

At 12:40 PM, Blogger Dave Diamond said...

Remember when you told us to tell you when you start blogging about blogging? Well, you are.

Funny how thin-skinned Sykes, McBride & Co. are...maybe they just need an enemy to rail against, so they've decided to focus their wrath on a retired Vietnam vet on the Internet.

At 1:39 PM, Blogger I Have a Comment said...

Looks like your buddy Doyle is caving in on school choice. I cannot wait for WEAC to run a commercial this fall giving Doyle credit for "saving" school choice.

At 4:34 PM, Blogger XOut said...

Hey CPA - it's called Open Enrollment. Another Republican innovation.

At 5:40 PM, Blogger Chris said...

yes CPA last year over 6000 children chose to flee MPS to better suburban schools under the open enrollment plan. look it up it was in the MJS :)

At 11:14 PM, Blogger getitright said...

You can't rewrite history Xoff. Don't start on Republicans being partisan about Choice: they helped start this program up with Polly Williams in the face of resistance from Democrats, and it's Democrats who have resisted it every step whenever there has been resistance.

Doyle has been utterly hostile to Choice from the outset of his administration - and he's never acted in good faith toward the Choice community. I'm not talking about Republicans here, I mean the community. Never met with them, refused to hear their side after they got in buses and traveled to Madison to see him - REFUSED.

What is Doyle so scared of? A few black people who he can't look in the eye because he is instead beholden to a union that's sold out their kids?

If the shoe fits indeed...

Finally, don't get into the fact his children are African American. They also went to, or now attend, a private school. Wonderful how Jim Doyle has a choice he is bending over backward to deny low income kids. Another parallel to Faubus and Wallace?

Here's a modest proposal: why doesn't he leave the Choice program alone? Get rid of the cap, which is set to destroy the program, and simply leave it alone?

At 8:47 AM, Blogger Xoff said...

If you're going to call yourself Get It Right, you might want to do a litle fact checking.

Doyle has met with school choice supporters, during his campaign and since he has been governor. Some of them even supported his candidacy. He has made some compromises and has offered others.

One of their sons, Gabe, did attend Wayland. It would be a little contradictory for you to suggest there is something wrong with choosing a private school. (They are both adults, by the way.) Gus went to Madison West High School. And both attended public elementary and middle schools.

Leave the program alone? Does that mean no regulation? That would be like saying Bush should leave the public schools alone. If testing and accountability are good for public schools under No Child Left Behind, why not for private schools which get taxpayer money?

At 11:43 AM, Blogger Interloper said...

getitright, you've got a lot of anger. I feel badly for you.

That said, your suggestion that a program funded with $93 million in taxpayer dollars should have NO regulation is a pipe dream and incredibly bad public policy--for the students, parents, and taxpayers.

At 4:04 PM, Blogger XOut said...

Interloper... MPS chows down over a billion a year and it has a huge problem getting kids to graduate or even attend. Should we defeund it?

If you want to treat choice like MPS - then we should throw huge piles of money at it and ignore bad performance.

Oh, and give the crappy teachers the same raise the good ones get.

At 4:16 PM, Blogger Xoff said...

Xout just nailed it. We have thrown $93-million at choice schools and ignored bad performance, and choice advocates won't even agree to measure performance.

At 5:06 PM, Blogger getitright said...

I don't propose zero regulations for Choice schools, I propose no additional from the state. The problems the Governor points to? The Mercedes fiasco which has been dealt with and the embezzler jailed (proving sources of accountability already exist in the program).

Other recent examples I've seen cited are ones DPI has brought forth: so the screening by DPI works (this means there is accountability now).

Meanwhile, the advocates of "accountability" for Choice would impose the same "accountability" that MPS has. Look at how effective that is.

Why does no one in the Choice camp - no one - believe the Governor has been trying to help solve the problem? Saying it don't make it so, Xoff.


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