Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Senate did it

In a 16-14 vote, the Oregon Senate passed SB767. Now, the future of vitual charter schools will likely, quite literally, lie in the hands of their enemies.

Sure, the bill still has to pass the House. But we'd have to get 6 Democrat votes (and keep every Republican on board) to kill it there. That is a long shot.

What is disappointing about the way this played out is that the bill was so dishonest, so disingeneous, and everyone knew it. But enough of them went along because the power player in the building wanted the bill, and the Democrats were going to feed the beast.

It is this type of thing that erodes public respect for the legislature as an institution. When you see this kind of thing railroaded through, so brazenly tossing thousands of kids under the bus as a sop to a powerful interest group, the true motivations of many of the people involved is laid bare.

Most disappointing is those who often cast thoughtful, honest votes who just went in the tank on this one. Sen. Rick Metsger voted in favor of the bill. He saw all the testimony in the Senate Education Committee, and he even saw the railroad job that Sen. Devlin performed in the Rules committee. He knew what this was all about - he even said as much when the bill passed out of Rules. He publicly stated then that he reserved the right to vote no on the floor, because he was unhappy with the way the bill was amended in Rules.

Metsger is a good man, a likeable guy, and usually has at least legitimate reasons for voting the way he does. But today he was a bag man for Devlin. He cast the deciding vote. He sold the kids down the river. It is a shame.

Oh, they will all tell you their reasons. But these are nothing but rationalizations. The fact of the matter is, this bill will seriously cripple virtual charter schools in Oregon.

The bill creates a task force made up almost entirely of education establishment status quo defenders, whose job it will be to decide on a framework for governing online education in Oregon, and propose legislation to the 2010 special legislative session.

Think about that. Not only is the committee stacked with virtual charter opponents, but so will be the 2010 legislature.

So the future of each virtual school beyond the next school year is completely uncertain. What would you do if you had a child enrolled in a school that might be gone the next school year? What would you do if you WORKED at a school whose future was so uncertain?

Yet the Democrats in the Senate apparently don't care about creating this kind of uncertainty fo thousands of kids and hundreds of employees. That pales in comparison, I guess, to the needs of the OEA, COSA, OSEA, and AFT.

After all, these groups elect Democrats. So they must be pandered to.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention Sen. Vicki Walker and Sen. Joann Verger, both of whom voted against the bill. I don't really know Verger, but Vicki Walker is one of my favorites. She is tough, smart and fair. We of course disagree on plenty, politically. But I have long admired her toughness.

This is a sad day for the integrity of the Oregon legislature.


Anonymous said...

"2010 legislature"? Did I miss something? Does Oregon have annual sessions now?

Roadrunner said...

Think about that. Not only is the committee stacked with virtual charter opponents, but so will be the 2010 legislature.

They're called "elections". You lost.

And a person who passes on bogus accusations, then fails to own up to it, is hardly one to be talking about integrity.

Conscience of a Moonbat said...

Again, Rob. We apologize for RoadBrat. We do respect the rights of the minority. We do not believe that "might makes right". We know that Republicans respected our minority rights in legislative bodies when the GOP held the majority. We do not practice Chicago-style politics and we reject those Democrats who do. Can't we all just get along?

Rob Kremer said...

We basically DO have annual sessions now, at least as long as the d's are in charge. They are planning a session in early 2010, just as they declared an emergency months in advance to hold a session in 2008.

RR: Bogus accusations? Please specify. Yes, we lost the election. So then I guess we should expect, and not complain, when the OEA instructs its puppets to kill any form of public schooling they don't support, tossing thousands of kids aside.

I guess that is just what Democrats do? OK then.

Roadrunner said...


The bogus accusations you posted regarding the closed car dealers. You have yet to acknowledge that the accusation are as flimsy as Paris Hilton's talent.

And my comment about your losing the election is about your complaint about the legislature being "stacked" against you. It's that way because the democratic process worked, and your side lost.

Rob Kremer said...

OK, RR. I am calling BS on you.

What accusation did I make? Please go to my post on the Chrysler issue and quote my accusation.

Where is it? What did I accuse the Obama of doing?

This is a reading comprehension test, and you have failed it repeatedly so far.

So go to my post, cut and paste in the accusation that I made.

Anonymous said...

Rob, you are vindicated. The Dealergate story-link was posted on NWR earlier. There are 9 installments of investigative journalism with substantial activity - just as Rob predicted. Go here for #9.

RoadRage is thus discredited. Q.E.D.

Roadrunner said...

Oh, come on, Rob. What do you call this:

Obama Car Dealer Scandal?


Did the Obama administration engineer the Chrysler dealership closures to benefit political supporters?

Yes, they're asked as questions, but it's clear they're meant as accusations.

And at no point since then have you posted anything saying "It's clear there is no scandal."

Let's put it this way. If someone posted something like "Is Rob Kremer a bank robber?" would you take that as an accusation?

Anonymous said...

You're from Chicago, Rob, so you should know. This is the most ethical Administration in U.S. history. Well, at least since the Clintons. How dare anyone infer that Rahmbo and B-Rock are practicing Pay-to-Play for the UAW and against Republicans? I agree with RoadBarf. This accusation is an outrage.

Anonymous said...

The only thing clear at this point - Obama thinks he is Allah and can do whatever he wants because Allah need not cite Constitutional authority for his GovMo actions. Apparently most of the U.S. Supreme Court, except Ruth Bader Ginsburg, agrees with Obama.

Questions? Yes, there are plenty of questions. So let's not rush to judgment and dismiss them out of hand. What if it turns out there really was some 'there' there? It would be too late to protect other victims.

Roadrunner, it's good news for your career that you've accepted that lucrative job offer in Caracas working with the teacher unions there for social justice. You will be missed.

Roadrunner said...


For someone concerned with education, it's odd that there's so much juvenile behavior from your supporters in the comments section here, with nary a peep from you.

On the other hand, guys, keep it up--Americans would rather have the party of adults in charge.

Anonymous said...

It looks like Democrats Stenny Hoyer, Chris Van Hollen and Daniel Maffei did not get Roadrunner's memo.

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer and Reps. Chris Van Hollen and Daniel Maffei have circulated this letter today ...

... to Obama expressing “growing concern” with the closures of GM and Chrysler dealerships across the country. The lawmakers say they’re asking for a “compelling justification as to how closing healthy dealerships will make the automakers more financially sound. The lawmakers are asking for lawmakers to sign this letter by 5p.m. today

We are sure an apology is forthcoming.

Rob you should have known better than to actually engage batty in an honest dialogue.

Roadrunner said...

Anon 1:24,

There's nothing in there that says that political considerations were taken into account in the decision of which dealerships to close.

I don't expect an apology, but perhaps I'll be surprised.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on the Venezuela gig, RR. They say Caracas is the 'new' Havana - a workers' paradise.

Anonymous said...

Roadrunner, Despite your love affair with transparency, you still have not detailed the process that was used to identify dealderships ordered closed by Obama. Since you have not done so, we can only assume that politics governed the decision-making. Politics is what Obama understands, not market economics.

First, provide the details of the Administration's decision-making process and the criteria used to pick the winners and losers. You should be able to easily thanks to the Obama Administration's unprecedented transparency. Then, we will stand corrected.

Until then, don't you realize that you are the equivalent of an arsonist hovering around the scene of the crime? A fool, soon busted.

Roadrunner said...

Anon 2:31

Ah, the "Guilty until proven innocent" approach.

When are you going to open your gulag?

Anonymous said...

Roadrunner is out of step with House Maj. Leader Steny Hoyer. One cannot tell exactly who she is 'in step' with on this. Maybe she is hanging out all alone on this one.

Roadrunner said...

Here, Rob, since it seems to be difficult for you to admit that you were wrong to post a bogus allegation, I'll give you an example of what you might want to write:

On May 31, I posted allegations of a possible scandal related to the closing of automobile dealerships. I now understand that those allegations have no basis in fact.

There are a number of problems with the allegations. First of all, it appears to be based on a raw quota system, that because a high number of Republicans were adversely affected, that indicates wrong doing. That kind of thinking is abhorrent to conservatives.

Second, for this to be worth pursuing, there has to be evidence that Republican dealerships were targeted regardless of their performance. As there is no indication at all in these allegations about dealer performance and party affiliation, these allegations are baseless.

Third, the data in the allegations appear to be sloppy in a number of ways. There appears to have been no effort to distinguish between dealerships that contribute only to Republicans from dealerships that contribute to both parties. Further, the data uses statistics for closed dealerships, but only gives a couple of examples of "Democratic" dealerships that are being allowed to remain open.

I am embarrassed that I posted what amounts to no more than malicious gossip. Doing so has damaged my credibility. I will endeavor to do all I can to repair the damage.

Come Rob, you can do it!

Anonymous said...

Remember former Clinton Chief of Staff Thomas 'Mack' McLarty? He was good, self-sacrificing public servant who never tried to cash in on his connections. So now he owns some dealerships. How dare you insinuate that he gained from the Obama Administration forcing the closure of his competitors? But don't worry. He was acting alone. There's "One Bad" apple in every barrel.

Anonymous said...

Roadruner? Do you have anything to prove that the closings were definitely not politically motivated?

Because the news is still swirling over the issue.

One would think that if it were as cut and dry as you say it is then CNN would not have just run a segment on it.

I do not know you but judging from just this one thread I have come to the conclusion that you live by your own set of rules.

Anonymous said...

Roadrunner: get a life.

Really, dude. I actually feel sorry for you.

Roadrunner said...

Anons 10:00 and 6:33, have you stopped beating your wives?

You have it backwards. Allegations aren't true until disproven, they are considered false until proven.

So far, all I've seen are statistics showing that closed dealerships tilt heavily toward giving to Republicans (although it's unclear how many of them also gave to Democrats), and examples of open dealerships connected to Democrats.

Nowhere, it seems, is there an analysis of the actual performance of the dealerships.

There's also no acknowledgment that, as a group, car dealers are heavily Republican, so of course most of the closed dealerships will be Republican.

This appears to be just another instance of the G.O.P. noise machine, hard at work.

Rob has chosen to be a cog in that machine, rather than a purveyor of honest discussion.

Conscience of a Moonbat said...

Roadrunner needs to seek professional help elsewhere for his/her wife-beating problem. Oy. Such schadenfreude to witness an anonybat unravel like this.

Roadrunner said...

It's truly amazing. To people on the right, pointing out the ridiculousness of their arguments is a sign of mental illness.

I'd say that people who are incapable of making an argument that doesn't depend on name-calling are in no position to comment on the mental health of others.

gabes mom said...

If anyone is actually interested in the original story..... My children attend ORCA and my husband is a science teacher there. We have everything riding on this decision. My son's autism therapies are dependent upon the excellent, private healthcare we receive. The public school in our area will not provide the services that my son requires to be successful, so I made the decision to enroll him in ORCA and to work with him one-on-one. His very future may depend upon our ability to 1)ensure his educational opportunities and 2)provide speech and occupational therapies. If ORCA is assasinated, I fear we will be able to do neither. I can assure you that this fight is far from over. Anyone associated with the passage of this bill will be put on notice. The grassroots movement is growing in this area. Any legislator, regardless of party, who has proven him/herself a shill for the unions or other special interests groups, had better run for cover.

Anonymous said...

The decision on SB 767 is FAR from justified. It is such an obvious power move by the Education Association and it's puppets. The blatant lies used to shove it down our throats won't be tolerated.

There is no excuse for such a successful, common sense program to be pull from the 1000's of children it supports.

The one thing the Education Association *might* fear more than charter schools is drop outs. If you are resorting to home schooling as a result of SB767, tell your district your child is a drop out rather than a home schooler.

School districts try to create all sorts of safety nets and alternative programs to avoid recording their drop outs. Charter schools are one method. It would be tough to back the decision on SB767 when 1000's of bright students suddenly appear on the drop out list.

gabes mom said...

I sent e-mails to everyone on the Revenue Committee. I got a reply (a canned response) from Rep. Chuck Riley designed to placate us with the notion that the dems. have no desire to close our schools. This is what they have claimed from the beginning. I'm not sure exactly how reducing a school of thousands to between 10 and 15 students virtually overnight is not "destroying" it. I, for one, am tired of the deception. I will be there on Monday for the hearing and to protest on the steps of the Capitol afterwards- even if I am alone.

Roadrunner said...

Any of you who give Rob any credibility whatsoever are fools.

Rob has posted gossip as though it's real evidence of wrongdoing, then is to much of a chicken to admit what he had done.

PattyW said...

Shame on Roadrunner for being so far out of bounds. We apologize, Rob. We owe you one.

Roadrunner said...

Yes, in Right Wing World, correcting mistakes is "out of bounds".

Spoofing another person's name, however, is acceptable.

Very odd.

Roadrunner said...

What is it with righties posting bogus stories, then not owning up to it:

So much for Republicans being the party of personal responsibility.

Anonymous said...

What is with the OEA making bogus statements, then non owning up to it.

Anonymous said...

What is it with RR believing he has any credibility?

Roadrunner said...

I don't know, anon 10:14, maybe it has to do with the fact that I've linked to some real information, and I've asked honest, though tough, questons, that Rob is unable or unwilling to answer.

At this point, why would anyone trust Rob, considering that he's posted bogus allegations, and has yet to own up to it.

Apparently conservatives believe that personal responsibility is something for the other guys.

What a pathetic group you are.

Conscience of a Moonbat said...

Sorry about today's anonysmear courtesy, most likely, of the disgraced Oregon Education Association. Parse it and you might mistake the author for "One Bad" Appell, but it could be from any of a number of juvenile-arrested anonyprogs. The smear template was found at a Starbucks in Portland ...

Rob Kremer said...

RR you have become so tedious. Really.

Roadrunner said...

Rob, if you would just admit that you blew it, I'd go away.

But so far, you haven't admitted that you posted a bogus allegation.

And that's what's tedious.

PattyW said...

Another day, another apology, Rob. Yes, this is getting tedious, Rob. Again, we're sorry about this RR rogue, Rob. As you know, he used to be one of us, Rob. We owe you another one, Rob.

Roadrunner said...


It's just unbelievable that you post a bogus allegation, then you're mad because I'm calling you on it.

Why don't you just grow a pair.

Roadrunner said...

Another accusation from the right that looks fishy:

Funny, if you google the first sentence that's quoted, the only hits that come up are Patrick's post about it and other blogs linking to it.

It may be on the up and up, but it sure seems fishy that it's so hard to find, and very convenient that Patrick doesn't link to it.

The G.O.P., the party of baseless accusations?

MAX Redline said...

Another accusation from the right that looks fishy:

What is it with you? Bring in stuff from anywhere in the blogosphere and claim that it's all part of a vast right-wing conspiracy of accusations?

I'm sure you look pretty in pink.

Roadrunner said...


It's a fellow Oregon righty blogger, one who seems to be esteemed by other COBRA bloggers.

And it's part of the pattern of rightwing bloggers making accusations that they can't back up.

Ted Piccolo did it. Rob Kremer did it. And, it seems at this point, so did Patrick Joubert Conlon.

And none of their fellow rightwing bloggers are calling them out on it.

Anonymous said...

What a sad, pathetic Angerbat. You need to get over it. At this point you ought to seek professional help.

Roadrunner said...

It's sad that when the deceit of the right is pointed out to them, those on the right perceive it as the left's problem, not their own.

Oh, and I forgot to mention David Gulliver's false accusation about the Naval Academy commencement.

At least Rob isn't the complete coward that Ted, Max, David, and Patrick are, who ban people like me who call them on their lies.

Roadrunner said...

I just did another google search of the first part of the first sentence of Patrick's post ("today I made a quick run to the local WalMart"), and the only hits were Patrick's post and other blogs referencing Patrick's post, as was the case yesterday.

Conveniently, Patrick doesn't name or link to the blog in question.

It is possible that for some reason the other blog doesn't appear in search engines, but at this point it looks suspicious that Patrick just made this up.

So, COBRA bloggers who read and comment on this blog, are you going to hold Patrick accountable for this, and at least ask him to provide a link to the blog in question?

Anonymous said...

It would be a kind of high-tech intervention. Well-deserved, but Rob is not likely to reach a better conclusion. I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not provide a more effective intervention than a white male who hasn't lived that life.

Rob Kremer said...

Geez, guys, what does any of this have to do with the topic?

Please don't post unrelated stuff on these threads.

Roadrunner said...

The original post is about dishonesty. I'm just pointing out that you and some of your fellow travelers have no credibility in this area.

Anonymous said...

RR, you're like a woodpecker who's latched onto a brick house.

When it comes to SB 767 there are neon signs and spotlights highlighting the corruption that pushed it through. When you say we "have no credibility in this area" I want to pluck your eyes out, give them a good washing and say "Take another look!"

It's mind boggling how you absolutely refuse to shame, let alone acknowledge, the lies the OEA has told and the indifference of the ODE. Still you defend them, then turn around and criticize the credibility of people who are LIVING the nightmare that is SB 767.

Do a ity-bitty bit of homework, un-cross your eyes, open your ears, get some fresh air, take a deep breath... It's all there... even the children see it...

Roadrunner said...

Very interesting.

It appears that Patrick has removed the fake post. There is no apology, though.

So, are any of you righties going to call him on it?

Roadrunner said...

By the way, if you haven't seen it already, there's a cached version at

Come on, COBRA bloggers, are you going to call out your compadre who posted a fake story?

Roadrunner said...

Hey Rob,

No comment about Patrick Joubert Conlon's posting a totally fabricated story on his COBRA blog, Born Again Redneck?

You people are all suckers if you believe anything he posts from now on.

Rob Kremer said...

Uh, no, I have never once even visited that blog. What am I supposed to be: watchdog for every blog post you take issue with?

Get a life, please.

Roadrunner said...

I'm just demonstrating the pattern of prevarication prevalent on "conservative" blogs: Yours, Ted Piccolo's, David Gulliver's, and Patrick Joubert Conlon's.

All Northwest "conservative" bloggers. All have posted fabrications in the last three weeks. None have recanted, though Patrick removed (without comment) his fabrication.

Roadrunner said...

Oh, and Rob, you have repeatedly passed up opportunities to apologize for having posted false accusations, and even denied that what you posted is an allegation, which is just laughable.

Absolutely amazing that anyone takes you seriously.

Roadrunner said...


Here is why the discussion of your posting about the supposed car dealer scandal is relevant.

If I were talking on and on about how 9/11 was an inside job and that planes didn't actually hit the towers or the Pentagon, wouldn't you make a judgment about my credibility?

The car dealer story is analogous to what the "truthers" do. By pushing a fake story, you damage your credibility. By failing to acknowledge that, and in fact denying that you've pushed a story that you've pushed, you destroy your credibility.

Anonymous said...

The only trouble is, members of Congress are investigating all the questions being raised. These members include Democrats. Why would you want to suppress the investigation and jump to conclusions? Since the Obama Administration prides itself on being the most transparent in history, we can expect them to come forward and explain their decision-making in due course.

Roadrunner said...

Actually, Anon 5:14, there seems to be evidence that Congress is investigating this. I have repeatedly asked for information to show that there is real evidence to create the suspicion of wrongdoing, and none has been forthcoming.

Just like with Truthers and Birthers.

Roadrunner said...

Oops, there should the word "no" before "evidence".

Anonymous said...

Oops? I thought folks' frickin' reputations were on the line here at RR's SmearThread. Oops? What a sad, lost, unemployable Angerbat. G'day.

Roadrunner said...

Ya gotta love it! When you point out that righties are making false accusations, you get called an "Angerbat".

It sure seems to me that the teabaggers are much angrier.