Delaware and Tennessee win the first round of Obama’s 4.35 billion dollar “Race to the Top” in education. We’ll look at how they won — and where the race goes from here.
Audio will be available at 2 P.M. CT. Listen here.
Summary: Featuring guests Reagan Farr, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Revenue and Andrew Hysell, director of the Campaign for Healthy Kids for Save the Children and Joan Randall, chair of the Tennessee Obesity Task Force..
Part 1: March 29, 2010 Bits and bobs of news from health care to buses, Mumpower to Haslam. Plus Al Gore gets it right, how much racism is part of the Anti-health insurance reform protests, and an interview with Commissioner Reagan Farr (he lets us call him “Commish”), of the Tennessee Department of Revenue [30.61MB download mp3]
Part 2: March 29, 2010 In this hour we interview Andrew Hysell, director of the Campaign for Healthy Kids for Save the Children and Joan Randall, chair of the Tennessee Obesity Task Force. We also hear two long-time news reporters hold national Republicans leaders to account for their ridiculous posturing and rampant hypocrisy – finally! – and we hear two Democratic state legislators hold state Republican leaders to account for the same. Plus, what should government do? Rep. Glen Casada (R-Franklin) thinks it should abandon it’s most precious resource. But Rep Sherry Jones (D-Nashville) disagrees. [18.8MB download mp3]
The title of this post was a quote I overheard in the locker room at my gym this week and it took the woman whose job it is to clean up after the members to set this particular high-heel and and pantyhose wearing member right. “People are trying,” she said as she scooped up yet another bushel of dirty towels, “but sometimes when you want a job there just aren’t any.” Pantyhose just sorta stepped away at that point mumbling, “Yeah…you’re right…”
I wish the locker room maintenance woman was in the state house during the exchange between Rep. Jones and Rep. Casada so Rep. Casada could hear those same words. But since that didn’t happen, maybe he’ll hear this.
Feel free to come back and watch it again and again. It will be at the top of our website all weekend.
More over at Pith in the Wind.
The argument at the center of almost every debate in the Tennessee legislature right now is the same argument happening all over America – do we want a government that does something or don’t we?
One absolute is that government is for the people. Another is that government is in place to protect resources. The most obvious are our natural resources – potential, actual, renewable, or non-renewable – like land, ground water, drinking water, mineral fuels, mountains, forests, wildlife, etc..
A less obvious resource – but the state’s most valuable – is its people. Happy, healthy, productive people make a happy, healthy, and productive state. And a happy, healthy, and productive state always lands in the top ten when statistically ranking important areas like education, health, wealth, and employability.
Investing in its people when they need it most is the smartest thing a government can do.
Right now, Tennesseans are suffering record unemployment and are finding it difficult to feed their families. If we – represented by our government – don’t do something during this difficult time it sends a signal to our most precious resource that they are expendable.
Rep. Sherry Jones (D-Nashville ) pushes back though, because she understands that giving Tennesseans a hand up right now is the best investment we can make.
Thank you, Rep. Jones, for realizing the worth of our people.
T/F/B: Tennessee Democratic Party
The individual health insurance mandate was constitutional before, you know, it wasn’t.
Watch this if only to see Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, who conceived the idea of the individual health insurance mandate, tap dance for Andrea Mitchell (at 4:06).
And let us not forget that the health insurance reform is not universal health care nor does it include a public option, it is an expansion of the private health insurance system we have now. Combine this with the mandate thing and Republican opposition seems even more absurd.
UPDATE: More video of the “breathtaking cynicism” coming from Republicans in Washington:
Sen. Hatch (R-UT) says he once supported an individual mandate without knowing he did — simply as a tactic to stop the Clinton plan.
UPDATE: Aunt B (did she “bless her heart” me?!) looks forward to seeing Mr. Blue Collar Republican on the TeeVee (while making me spit-take my coffee with a joke about one of music city’s finest):
I would just like to offer two bits of advice. In the future, you might want to refrain from premeditating your ‘civil disobedience’ on the internet. It’s going to make it harder for your lawyer to argue that you’re a good person who was just caught up in the emotions of the moment. Instead, you’re going to look like the kind of dude who planned and calculated whatever it is you’re going to do.
Premeditation usually means a longer sentence.
I mean, you didn’t forget about that part, did you? Where the cops come and they arrest you and you stand before a judge who doesn’t have much sympathy for brick throwing being “civil” and you go to jail? And, hell, if you’re an interesting enough target and this is y’all’s 60s, they audit you for the next decade?
And you forget the worst part. John Rich is the music of your movement. And, don’t get me wrong, he’s a talented song-writer, but he’s not the best singer in Nashville. Is that really the voice you want over the montage of your exploits in your biopic?
Anyway, I look forward to watching your perp walk on the news.
Speak to Power reports on the “stunning admission” in from TN Republican Senator Bob Corker that “breaks the long-standing 11th Commandment, ‘Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican.’”
In a Politico article, Corker talks about the GOP strategy with the upcoming debate on a bill that would reform the financial services industry, and how he feels the current GOP strategy of “OBSTRUCT, OBSTRUCT, OBSTRUCT!” isn’t going to work on a bill that the public largely stands behind, even if they’re not clear on the specifics.
From the article:
Corker said Republicans lost their leverage when they failed to rally around the emerging deal on which he and Dodd were working until several weeks ago. Corker suggested that the lack of enthusiasm from his colleagues about those talks played into Dodd’s decision to cut short his work with Corker and move a bill to committee.
“Had everybody come together around that bipartisan negotiation, and I think had Chris [Dodd] seen that other Republicans would actually join in at that time, he might have continued on. But I think the fact that didn’t occur … the die was cast,” Corker said.
“I don’t think the polarity [of health care] will exist around this bill, and I think that again a major strategic error has occurred.”
It seems as if Senator Corker is one of the guys in a “shiny political celebrity high-profile” job that wants to actually get something done. Too bad he picked the wrong party to join.
This clip begins with Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Where Do we go From Here?” (“Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.”), winds its way through mush needed snark about the recent Newt Gingrich quote about passage of health care reform (“They will have destroyed their party much as Lyndon Johnson shattered the Democratic Party for 40 years”) (Newt’s clarification is a doozie too), and lands on the question that has starred in some of our country’s most historic (and violent) moments and is once again at the forefront of every public policy and political discussion: Do we want a government that does something, or don‘t we?
Rachel Maddow: “Actually, doing health reform is a demonstration that government is not just for show. Government is for fixing problems. We have a government, not just to give people shiny political celebrity high-profile jobs so they can win popularity contests against other people who want shiny political high-profile jobs. We have a government to work on problems that we have as a people, as a country, problems that aren‘t working themselves out intrapersonally or in the marketplace. Government is for something. We have one for a reason.”
Here are some pictures from the Tennessee Tea Party visit to the Capitol this morning. They were taken during the right wing extremist red-meat speeches given by Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey (R-Blountville) and Senator Mae Beavers (R-Mt. Juliet), two of the Co-Prime Sponsors of the Tennessee Health Freedom Act.
Did Sen. Beavers really say to the “crowd” that this bill would allow them to choose to keep their private health insurance? Can’t they do that now?
I will try to remember more of what was said but mostly all I heard was “blah blah blah.”
We at Liberadio(!) hope the TNGOP continues to follow the leadership of Lt. Governor Ramsey and Sen. Mae Beavers. Please, oh please, oh please. Because while you’re doing that we’ve be over here explaining that affordable health care coverage for your kids without having to worry about pre-existing conditions is right around the corner.
This poor guy was confused. He thought they said “Pirate Party”.
UPDATE: More from Woods – Under Siege at the Legislature: Tea Partiers Howl Over Health Care Reform
UPDATE II: Another eye witness account – this picture and a quote: