Saturday, September 21, 2013

Laugh of the Week Courtesy of DFER

You remember DFER, right? Democrats for Education Reform, a small outlier of Dems who love ed reform. Well, they valiantly trudge on, trying to seem relevant.

I'm on their Twitter feed and I noticed an op-ed at their website authored by a young "progressive" Dem, a student at Harvard named Colin Diersing. He was decrying the education view of the winner of the Democrat race for mayor of NYC, Bill de Baliso, who has pretty much said he would roll back a lot of what Mayor Bloomberg has done for/against public education in NYC.

With all the full-blown (and overblown) rhetoric that defines ed reformers, he goes on the attack:

One Blogger's Progressive Case Against Bill de Blasio
September 16, 2013
This piece was originally posted by the Harvard Political Review By Colin Diersing*
I’m a progressive Democrat. I care about widening inequality, would like my government to more actively redistribute money from the very wealthy to the very poor, and find the racial implications of policies such as Stop and Frisk deeply troubling. Most media narratives suggest that these positions would lead me to support Bill de Blasio. Indeed, I find much of his rhetoric about inequality in New York appealing and compelling.
Unfortunately, de Blasio has declared war on the high quality schools that are actually making a difference in the lives of low­-income children in New York City.
- See more at: http://www.dfer.org/blog/2013/09/the_progressive.php#sthash.uZknmJBJ.dpuf
Unfortunately, de Blasio has declared war on the high quality schools that are actually making a difference in the lives of low-income children in New York City.

He takes on the charter schools of Eva Moskowitz (a long story but she is not the most beloved person in public education in NYCZ), saying de Blasio would threaten her schools that are achieving. 

Nonsense.

Now, DFER has a disclaimer about this being the opinion of the blogger and not theirs but they did choose to put it in their blog AND tweet it out.  (Of course, DFER, not having a real blog, doesn't allow comments so there was no opportunity to say anything.  Courageous group, that DFER.) 

So I said to myself, who is Colin Diersing and so I Googled him.  Being a young person there wasn't much but there was his Facebook page.

This young man, who seemingly cares very much about public education and the children it serves, had a whole thread on young children but not so much caring about them.

To whit, apparently there is a playground outside his dorm at Harvard and those kids are darned noisy.  Here's what he and his classmates had to say:

Colin Diersing
6 hours ago near Cambridge, MA via mobile
Does anyone know how to file a noise complaint in Cambridge and have the kids at the playground outside my window arrested? This madness must stop.
Like · Share
31 people like this.
View 12 more comments

Hannah Schwarz Either an open enrollment reference or a reference re: the app on your phone. I strongly support both. #goodschoolsaresafeschools
3 hours ago · Edited · Like · 1

Catherine Fitzpatrick Diersing This gave Aunt Kim Atteberry Barton, Uncle Chris Barton and I the giggles.
3 hours ago · Like · 1

Constanza Vidal Bustamante http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kp88mBh72Rg
54 minutes ago · Like

Paul Lisker Solution: winter.
38 minutes ago · Like

6 hours ago · Like · 1

Jennifer Fitzpatrick Perry Are you actually advocating the arrest of children or are these Harvard "kids" you want imprisoned?
5 hours ago · Like

Colin Diersing No no. They're six year olds.
5 hours ago · Like · 5

Kim Soffen I know! I can't even hear the music at my vodka-soaked rager over the laughter of small children!
5 hours ago via mobile · Like · 3

Colin Diersing I count four comments and twelve likes and zero people aftually helping me find information on how to make the Cambridge police department act. #NotHelpful
5 hours ago via mobile · Like · 2

Cornelia Bauer Haha courts ruled in Germany that children's voices and playing sounds don't count as noise and thus you'd need to suck it up, if you were in Germany. Can't you turn it into some positive encouragement of being happy and active?
4 hours ago · Like

Hayley Pamensky Goldberg Noisier than my kids.. Just gate them for 2 weekends! Should work... otherwise report to nat committee
4 hours ago · Like · 2

Jennifer Fitzpatrick Perry I'm guessing the playground was there before you were . . . no reasonable expectation of peace and quiet.
4 hours ago · Like

Colin Diersing Proposed backup plans include leaving drug-like substances on the playground to scare the parents off from taking their kids there.
4 hours ago · Like · 2

Hannah Schwarz Colin Diersing, putting #StudentsFirst
4 hours ago · Like · 5

Colin Diersing touche
4 hours ago · Like

Colin Diersing Hannah Schwarz, I'm empowering them to choose to get away from me.
4 hours ago · Like · 1


To note, Mr. Diersing is a member of Students First, an off-shoot org for Michelle Rhee's group.

So Mr. Diersing "cares" about public education but boy, get some noisy little kids outside his window and he'll look for any way - like planting fake drugs at a playground - to get them away.

This is who DFER thinks is a good role model to write about "progressive" education.

Count me out.

(I note that Mr. Diersing took this whole thread off his Facebook page but I managed to copy it before he did so.)  

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ok, this made me laugh long and hard.

But it is a good thing to remember that nearly all young adults, such as Mr. Diersing, are still very myopic in their interactions with the world. Enthusiastic and full of energy? Yes. Able to make careful and considered decisions? Occasionally perhaps, but not consistently. Have enough real-world experience to reasonably predict the long term effects of said actions? Almost never.

DK

hschinske said...

Honestly, it looks like typical Facebook humor to me. I doubt it means much one way or t'other.

Helen Schinske

Anonymous said...

I really, really cannot stand the DFER frauds. In my mind, they are worse than the GOP when it comes public education - because at least the GOP does not try to hide the fact they don't think poor kids deserve the same education as affluent white kids, and that they can't stand public school teachers. Yet DFER frauds claim they are Democrats, and are perfectly willing to sacrifice teachers, public schools, and poor families to neoliberal policies just so they can hobnob with the rich folks and assuage their pathetic little consciences that they are "saving" poor kids from failing public schools. They love Jeb Bush and his Ed 4 Excellence $ham, and the adulation they slather over Rick Hess, Eric Hanushek, Arne Duncan and Bill Bennett is enough to make a normal person puke. Their indignation when someone like Diane Ravitch calls them on their bullshit (see DFER fanboy @JaredPolis calling Diane Ravitch evil) makes me want to throw tomatoes. Rotten tomatoes, no less

I can only hope that the real Democrats out there catch on to the sham that is DFER - and the Ed Deform that they proselytize. Just recently I had to tell a long-time friend (now DFER convert) where he could stick it when he claimed that I - and all public school teachers - were the problem, and that charter schools and TFA were the solution. After I expressed my pity for his lack of brainpower and the fact that his private school education clearly didn't teach him how to think critically, I wished him good luck in his life and hoped that his new stepmother - a retired public school teacher and principal - didn't ban him from her house when I conveyed to her what he thought about public school educators.

CT

Melissa Westbrook said...

Helen, I think it was typical Facebook humor. But the fact that I'm supposed to take him seriously as someone who knows and considers what is best for children in public schools in NYC and then this is his view of kids? Not so much.

Colin Diersing said...

Mellisa, I apologize if my sarcasm in a private Facebook post didn't translate. I'd be more than happy to discuss policy disagreements but don't think ad hominem attacks are a good way to inform the debate about such an important issue. I also somewhat resent you reprinting my friends' names here - I published an opinion publicly and should expect for people who disagree with me to engage in these sorts of attacks, but I don't think there was a reason to bring their names into it.

Anonymous said...

CT for the Win! WSDWG

Anonymous said...

Colin - I totally get the sarcasm intended in the post, and it was funny! However,and unfortunately, no post on Facebook is "private". As an aspiring politico you'd do we'll to remember this.

2boysclub

Melissa Westbrook said...

Mr. Diersing -I realize you were being sarcastic. I have children your age and sarcasm is my stock in trade.

However, it is a little hard to fathom the hilarity of considering anyone planting drugs on a playground as a joke and then taking that person seriously on public policy. (See Anthony Weiner.)

And 2boysclub is right; your generation wants to put your whole lives on display? Don't get mad when others can read and comment on what you (and your friends write) when you do.

Consider this a lesson learned and move on.

Colin Diersing said...

I should clarify, I don't really care about you having read or reproduced my Facebook. What I do object to is you distracting from a serious debate about important policy issues with frivolity.

Perhaps an actual engagement with how to deal with the enormous challenge of educating all of New York's children for success would have been a better use of time and resources.

Melissa Westbrook said...

The point is that you may not be the person who we can take seriously on this discussion. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Colin said:

What I do object to is you distracting from a serious debate about important policy issues with frivolity.

LOL, the irony...


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