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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Gadfly Radio with Martha and CalWatchDog: Tonight, Ben Boychuk, John Seiler, Special Guests, Ben Chavis on School Boards, & Jack Dean on Public Pension Costs

Gadfly Radio Tonight, at 8 PM PT

Live Call in number: 1-818-602-4929
Dec 13, 2011:  Tonight live at 8 p.m. PT on Gadfly Radio, Martha Montelongo along with Ben Boychuk of CA City Journal and John Seiler of CalWatchDog.com.  

Special guests tonight are Dr. Ben Chavis, author of  Crazy Like a Fox , of American Indian Public Charter School fame, on the critical role of School Boards in support of the current prevailing paradigm that is our K-12 Public Education System,  and Jack Dean of  Pension Tsunami on the significant increase in the level of the public's awareness to the dangerous current system of public policy formulas for wages, benefits and pensions for our Public Employees or Public Sector workers, including a look at the most recent Field Poll, Gallup Poll and political developments in San Jose, San Diego, and other happenings in CA.   

I love Whitney Tilson's write up on his blog, about Ben Chavis.  Here's an excerpt:
His schools are grades 6-12 and his first group of 27 seniors graduated last year -- and 100% went to four-year colleges. He's grown AIPCS from one school to five and all of them got API scores above 900 from the CA Dept of Education (scores range from 200 to 1000 with a statewide goal for all schools of 800; needless to say, nearly all other Oakland schools are nowhere near 900, much less 800). He told me his black and Latino kids are outscoring white and Asian kids -- so much so that leaders of the Chinese community in Oakland asked him to open a school in their community -- and it's his lowest-scoring school (so far anyway)! His brash, in-your-face style would make any reasonable person uncomfortable, but great leaders often have this trait (think Patton). Here's what I know: if I had to send my kids to an inner-city school, I'd want them at one of his schools (if there weren't a KIPP nearby of course; interestingly, critics level some similar charges against KIPP as they do against Chavis: the discipline is too harsh -- oh boo hoo hoo...).
John Seiler's latest hot piece up at CalWatchDog is another must read: New Chart: More Spending Impossible | CalWatchDog
And it's a must discuss too!  

Related links are a sampling from Pension Tsunami's posts for Today, Dec 13, 2011:

The State Worker: Poll: Government workers favor lower pensions for new hires 

PPIC POLL: Big majority support Brown’s tax increase plan | SignOnSanDiego.com

San Jose Needs to Continue Bargaining on Pension Reform (editorial - San Jose Mercury News)

Poll Finds Little Love for Big Gov; 64% of People Surveyed Said Big Government Is Biggest Threat to the Country (M.J. Lee / Politico)

PENSION PULSE: Most Misunderstood Asset Class Today? (blog - Leo Kolivakis)

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Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"

"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database


Death of an innocent. Death or injury of a police officer. Death of a nonviolent offender.
Raid on an innocent suspect. Other examples of paramilitary police excess. Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night. But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.

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