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New York Times on the Debate Among Black Organizations about Charters

Diane Ravitch's blog

A good and balanced article in the New York Times about the division among black organizations about charters.

The writer, Kate Zernike, also wrote this stunning article about the failure of school choice in Detroit. Lots of choice but no good choices.

Howard Fuller runs Black Alliance for Educational Options. BAEO has been lavishly funded by rightwing foundations for many years, to advocate for vouchers and charters.

Shavar Jeffries, of course, speaks for Democrats for Educational Reform, which has zero roots in the black community. Its members and funders are hedge fund managers. DFER probably hired him so it would have a voice in this conversation. It has long claimed to speak for “the civil rights movement,” but no one could take that claim seriously when DFER consists only of billionaires, millionaires, and others whose roots are in Wall Street, not Main Street or Harlem or BedStuy.

The NAACP and…

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Expand Social Security, get rid of 401Ks


People, can we face some hard truths about how Americans save for retirement?

It Isn’t Happening

Here’s a fact: most people aren’t seriously saving for retirement. Ever since we chucked widespread employer based pension systems for 401K’s and personal responsibility, people just haven’t done very well saving. They take money out for college for their kids, or an unforeseen medical expense, or they just never put money in in the first place. Very few people are saving adequately.

In Fact, It Shouldn’t Happen

Next: it’s actually, mathematically speaking, extremely dumb to have 401K’s instead of a larger pool of retirement money like pensions or Social Security.

Why do I say that? Simple. Imagine everyone was doing a great job saving for retirement. This would mean that everyone “had enough” for the best-case scenario, which is to say living to 105 and dying an expensive, long-winded death. That’s a…

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