Haim's post dated Sep 8, 2012 6:56 PM, to which this is a response, is copied below my signature, for reference. Herewith my comments:
A nicely vague and wooly statement, signifying absolutely nothing, such as we have come to expect from Haim.
But Haim has given us a definite link to a page put up by something called the "OpenSecrets.org: Center for Responsive Politics", which has given us printed (and hopefully authentic) information about "The Top All-Time Donors, 1989-2012" - with broad indications as to what percentage might have been donated to the "Republicans" or to the "Democrats".
I'm afraid those donations made by no means prove Haim's strident (yet feeble) rants about the 'Education Mafia'. Haim here claims: > > You will observe that #5 on the list of "Top All-Time > Donors" is: National Education Association. > Yes, I observe that the National Education Association, according to the table, over the years 1989-2012 donated a total sum of US $ 43,613,263 - 71% to the Democrats and 5% to the Republicans. They ARE indeed No. 5 on the list, as Haim claims. In what way does that prove the existence of a 'Mafia'?
[There are 140 total organizations/bodies listed. What about Nos. 1-4, and 6-140? How come these have escaped Haim's accusatory eye?]
Readers should take the trouble to read through the document themselves - and they will observe that it lists a sizable number of donations from various sources - to both Democrats and Republicans. Herewith the link once again, for easy reference: http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/list.php?order=A
Nowhere any evidence whatsoever of a 'Mafia' (whether it be the 'Education Mafia' or the 'Realtors Mafia'). I bring up the second name because The National Assn of Realtors, over the same time-period, contributed US$ 44,032,938 (somewhat more than the National Education Association) - 45% to the Democrats, 47% to the Republicans. I understand that such donations to political parties are allowed in US Law - they have to be 'declared', which seems to have been the case.
[There IS a group called "ACTBlue", which had, during the same period (according to said table) donated US$$69,829,402 - 99% to the Democrats and 0%to the Republicans. I guess Haim left them out of the charge sheet of forming a 'Mafia' because that must be the 'action-group' for donations of the Democratic Party!
[There are also groups that have donated all or practically of the amount noted against their name to the Republican Party. To my mind, this proves no wrongdoing on their part].
My question to all of Haim's vague and wooly rant, which appears directly below my signature:
In what way does any of that indicate the existence of this infamous 'Education Mafia'?? What have these people done (if they have actually formed themselves into a 'collective' of sorts) that is deemed to be illegal? Why should we "Put the Education Mafia in jail!", as Haim has been demanding?
There is absolutely nothing to indicate wrongdoing of any kind! In my view, there is DEFINITELY nothing to help "Put The Education Mafia in Jail!" as Haim commands MUST be done.
Now here are some clear and definite questions that might help us get a grip on, maybe come to terms with that vague wooliness called the 'Education Mafia':
1) Is President Obama a member of the 'Education Mafia'? 2) Is First Lady Michelle Obama a member of the 'Education Mafia'? 3) Are either or both their charming daughters members of the 'Education Mafia'? 4) Are you a member of the 'Education Mafia'? Is Robert Hansen? Wayne Bishop? firstname.lastname@example.org? 5) Is Paul A. Tanner III a member of the 'Education Mafia'? Lou Talman? GSC? Kirby Urner? Anyone else you can specifically name?
If any of the above (at 1,2,3,4,5 above) are members of the Education Mafia, then, maybe, we have something to start with. Who else do you feel may comprise the membership of this 'Education Mafia'?
Ah, yes, Haim has actually named a body called the 'National Education Association', # 5 on his list. May I suggest that we should write to them and inform them that they are under suspicion of having formed themselves into an illegal collective, called the 'Education Mafia' (devoted to the heinous crime of wrecking US education), and that we intend to move strongly against them? Or, perhaps you recommend that we should keep our moves secret from them till we actually haul them into Court? [They are a 'Mafia', after all].
If not the above, then who are the members? Who may be the individuals or groups who may be members of this infamous 'Education Mafia' that has wrecked US education (as claimed by Haim, Wayne Bishop, Robert Hansen, and other reliable witnesses)?
[For the crime of wrecking US education, if it can be proved to the satisfaction of a Court, they should certainly all be put into jail - and kept there for a long time!]
As the members of the 'Education Mafia' are identified, we shall have to bring forward clear and definitive evidence of collective wrong-doing on their part - clear enough to convince a fair trial court. When all of that is properly done, then, and ONLY THEN, would we be able to do as Haim commands must be done, "Put the Education Mafia in jail!"
Till then, we should simply forget all this kind of nonsense once and for all - and get on with the real, hard job of creating an effective education system (be it for the US or for India or for anywhere else).
"No, Virginia, there IS no such thing as the 'Education Mafia' - it's all just more stuff and nonsense like those 'Bogeymen' stories told to frighten you and stop you from asking questions".
Readers are requested to study Haim's post pasted below my signature, to decide for themselves whether they should give any kind of credence to any of Haim's talk about the 'Education Mafia' and his demands that they be put into jail.
GSC ("Still Shoveling Away!") Below: Haim's post that he imagines proves the existence of and malfeasance by that monstrous group, the 'Education Mafia':
Haim posted Sep 8, 2012 6:56 PM: > Haim Posted: Jul 16, 2012 10:48 AM > > > I hope this note satisfies the three people out > there > >in Cyberia who were still puzzled by my > >neologism, "Education Mafia".* > > Apparently not. Perhaps another, useful, way to > to think of the Education Mafia is to examine it > through the lens of political lobbying. > > So, everybody knows that banks, of both the > the commercial and investment types, are fierce > competitors. And yet, no one has trouble > understanding that they also share some important > common interests. That is why one sees without > objection, in the major news media, terms like "Wall > Street" and "Banking Interests", as references to > one, coherent industry group that buys influence in > government. > > Can we think of Big Education in the same way > way stupid leftists (please excuse the redundancy) > think of Big Pharma or Big Oil or Banking Interests? > Here is one organization who think the answer is > s "Yes", > http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/list.php?order=A > You will observe that #5 on the list of "Top All-Time > Donors" is: National Education Association. > > To think that being #5 on the list is impressive > ive enough, and that it proves the existence of an > Education Mafia (which it does), is to almost miss > the point. To fully comprehend the enormity of the > situation one must understand that these five Top > All-Time Donors are not like five mud wrestlers > competing for the same prize. For example, AT&T does > not butt heads with the NEA over education policy. > > When it comes to political influence in education > ion policy, no other organization is in the same > league with the the National Education Association. > They stand alone. In education policy, the National > l Education Association is the proverbial 800 Lb > Gorilla. If you want to know why nothing has changed > in education for the last 60 yrs, the site above > lists 43.6 million reasons. > > But wait! There is more. Of course, education > ion policy is a major concern of the Education Mafia > but, apart from policy, the snaggletoothed, knuckle > dragging wing of the Education Mafia, aka the unions, > are just another public sector union. In this > regard, they are as one with the American Federation > of State, County, and Municipal Employees. Together, > since 1989 they have spent $105 million dollars on > political lobbying. Together, they are by far the > biggest, meanest dog in the junkyard. > > Do you want to know why American cities are > are actually going bankrupt? Why there was a > near-civil war in Wisconsin last year, or why > teachers in the failed Chicago Public School system > have the face to make demands? Opensecrets.org gives > 105 million explanations. > > Oh yes, Virginia, there is an Education Mafia > fia (apologies to "The Sun" newspaper). And, just > like their prototype, they do not get up every > morning intending to hurt your children, but they > will, if they feel that is what they need to do to > protect their interests. > > Haim > Shovel ready? What shovel ready?