Not a Conservative Country; ACORN Book Review; Children with Disabilities; More on Obama Betrayals; Bevan Dufty; Christmas Carol …

by on December 14, 2009

To the Editor:

Paul Hogarth hit the proverbial nail on the head. I have marveled for years, but wasn’t really surprised, that with a clear majority of voters being at least somewhat liberal, the Democratic majority Congress can’t seem to actually pass truly liberal legislation.

I am a far-left liberal — actually a Socialist — and voted for Cynthia McKinney; but a lot of good that did! Most even very liberals voted for the lesser of two evils, figuring Obama would be better than the alternative. Real third party candidates are purposely prevented from participating in or even attending Candidates’ Forum types of events. Just ask Ralph Nader. What we have is NOT a democracy at all, but a Corporatocracy.

Donald Havis
San Mateo, CA


Dear Demented:

FYI, according to a recent poll, this country is about 40% Conservative, 40% Moderate & 20% Liberal. These basic figures haven’t changed in some time. About 38% of the country supports the health care abortion now in the Senate & 62% DO NOT WANT the health care abortion now in the Senate. Apparently, you are projecting again, i.e. stating facts the way you want them to be not the way they are.

This approach eventually leads to you having your very own white jacket. Yes, I know, as a liberal you desperately want to have the power to tell the rest of us how to run our lives in complete detail. I’ve got news for you, this is a path to another Revolution in this country, and no, I am not the only one to have this view.

If I was going to charitable I would tell you that you need professional help. But, your ravings, & those of your cronies, have washed that out of me some time back. Therefore, I will close with the advice that you need to get your head out of your ass.

Robert R. McCall, Jr.


To the Editor:

Great book review and analysis of the current state of community organizing. Randy Shaw knows well both the field of community organizing in general and ACORN specifically. It’s about time the debate in the media about community organizing and ACORN, which has been under heavy attack since the election of President Obama, is starting to include the other side of the argument.

Robert Fisher
Hartford, CT


To the Editor:

Thank you for this article. While my 8 year old son’s school does not have inclusion, he is enrolled in the Special Day Class. As a parent of a child with learning disabilities , it is so hard to find a perfect fit class wise for your child. I appreciate hearing Ms. Franklin’s experiences with SFUSD. I look forward to reading more articles like this.

Sandy Coleman
San Francisco, CA


To the Editor:

As the parent of an ADHD child, I understand your frustrations. No doubt, the district has lagged on the issues you raise. What you did not mention though is the money.

Special education laws at both the state and federal levels are grossly underfunded mandates. The costs are borne by the districts and their general funds must make up the difference. We underfund education and until that woeful situation is remedied all children will suffer the consequences. Special ed students are no exception. All the laws in the world will make no difference if the people and their legislators don’t find ways to make equity not just the goal, but the day to day reality.

Don Krause
San Francisco


To the Editor:

Too bad you were duped, but wasn’t that their plan all along? It seems like the person who will best serve the establishment with little chance of wandering off course will win the presidency. The people continue to lose their voice and when they rise up they are quickly defused. I guess if you follow the money trail (Wall St., wars, etc.) what has transpired, thus far, all makes perfect sense.

Jen Muncil
Burlington, VT


To the Editor:

I can agree with some of what is said here, but I think a lot of people are expecting too much too soon from President Obama; especially in light of the mess he inherited from Bush. Personally, I’m glad he asked Gates to stay on as Sec. of Defense. He had not been in long and it gave a sense of continuity.

Jenny Harold
Anderson, Indiana


To the Editor:

I don’t know if this helps, but I worked hard to get Obama elected President because I knew that letting John Mc Coot and Sarah Liar into the White House would spell disaster for America.

Does this mean I’ve been happy with the job Obama has been doing? I’m torn. On the one hand, it would have been great if he didn’t let the US government become Wall Street’s sock puppet or if he had rolled back the institutions of constitutional dictatorship created by the fascists of the Bush/Cheney regime. On the other hand, I don’t know how much of the current leftist/progressive carping is a preference of the perfect over the good or even an impatience with what may actually be a political long game.

Then again, when Obama took office, I didn’t expect him to solve every single problem under the sun. For me, he was always a means to the ultimate end of establishing a more progressive America. It would have been nice if he made deliberate efforts to make such changes happen sooner. But I accepted that ultimately I and other progressives would have to work to be the change we had been waiting for … with or without him.

Peter Wong
San Francisco


To the Editor:

During the campaign, Obama was very clear he wanted to focus on Afghanistan and increase our presence there. He has been true to his word. So I don’t understand why most progressives are feeling betrayed about his policies related to Afghanstan. That said, I too am generally dissappointed in Obama’s half-ass approach to almost every issue, whether it be an insufficient stimulus, the lack of real reform of the financial sector, and now healthcare reform.

I do understand the the feelings of being betrayed on these issues. Even Afghanistan is a half-ass measure. For any chance of long-term success, we should be committed to a long-term nation building project akin to the Marshall Plan, while controlling the Taliban with a force much larger than being contemplated with this surge. We simply can’t allow the kind of ideological hate that the Taliban represent to propogate in a region where they may eventually get access to nuclear material. Most progressives omit any discussion of these very real dangers when arguing against involvement in Afghanistan.

Daniel Krause
San Francisco


To the Editor:

Randy is on the money per usual. One of the best examples is the DC-based Center for Community Change. They made health care and immigrant rights their top two issues in the last election. (They weren’t and aren’t progressive and wise enough to have made the Employee Free Choice Act a priority). Obama has dropped the ball on both of CCC’s primary issue. And nary a peep out of them. They appear far more interested in brokering their supposed “access” for power over progessive organizations with the inclination to at least pressure the Obama Administration if not actually fight. Keep up the savvy and inciteful analysis.

Buck Bagot
San Francisco


To the Editor:

By not providing any information as to why Dufty and Newsom have vetoed the latest measure, your story is basically ineffective. How about a bit of context to fill out the details which would then allow the reader to make up his or her mind as to whether Dufty and Newsom’s actions are defensible? Journalism 101.

Greg Janza
San Francisco, CA


Dear Buzzin’ Lee Hartgrave:

Ok, ok you definitely have me wanting to see ‘A Christmas Carol.’ I saw it in different versions over the years at A.C.T. (which I also love this theater company), but you make this new production sound like it’s worth the money. Thank you for your review.

Elise Williams
San Francisco, CA


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