Sunday stuff.


Attorney Roy Cohn, right, with Sen. Joseph McCarthy during the Army hearings in 1954. Later, Cohn returned to New York and met Donald Trump.


Letter to Crain’s Chicago Business,

Illinois needs a good school funding formula, not just a new one (“Stop talking and fix the state school funding formula,” Feb. 24). The Rauner commission recommended a supposedly evidence-based system based on 27 elements that would improve Illinois schools.

Some of the 27 were based on successful efforts in other schools, but some were not. And to get new state funds, local school districts would have to do none of the 27.

As someone has said, it is like saying if you do X, you get Y, but you do not have to do X.

Special education funding, for example, needs to be related to the need for special education, not based on a fixed number of general education students. The need for special education varies widely among Illinois school districts based on concentrated poverty, parental drug use, environmental factors including lead poisoning, premature births, stress in daily living, the family/guardian situation, etc.

There is no magic school funding formula, but there are good ones and bad ones.

Jacksonville, Ill.



It was a scalding message, painted on a university campus sidewalk this week: “Welcome to the Trump plantation. Overseer: Wayne A. I. Frederick.”

What made the message more jarring still was that Dr. Frederick is the black president of one of the country’s most respected historically black institutions, Howard University, founded here 150 years ago as a bulwark of social justice. Other graffiti on campus buildings said, “Wayne Frederick doesn’t care about black people,” and “Make Howard black again.” NY Times



 McCarthyism is something of which Trump should have in-depth knowledge.

His lifelong attorney and mentor — Roy Cohn, one of the men who helped mold Trump into Trump — was, as one author called it, Joseph McCarthy’s sidekick. Star-Tribune


I still remember my first sight of New York.  It was really another city when I was born – where I was born.  We looked down over the Park Avenue streetcar tracks.  It was Park Avenue, but I didn’t know what Park Avenue meant downtown.  The Park Avenue I grew up on, which is still standing, is dark and dirty.   No one would dream of opening a Tiffany’s on that Park Avenue, and when you go downtown you discover that you are literally in the white world.  It is rich – or at least it looks rich.  It is clean – because they collect garbage downtown.  There are doormen.  People walk about as though they owned where they are – and indeed they do.  And it’s a great shock.  It’s very hard to relate yourself to this.  You don’t know what it means.  You know – you know instinctively – that none of this is for you.  You know this before you are told.  And who is it for and who is paying for it?  And why isn’t it for you? James Baldwin’s Talk to Teachers.


This week’s Podcast of Hitting Left with the Klonsky Brothers featuring Karen Lewis.

One Reply to “Sunday stuff.”

  1. House Bill 2808 and the amendment, still secret, to Senate Bill 1 would give school districts extreme local control, as they are based on recommendations of local school superintendents.

    State funding needs the accountability of spending money for special education teachers actually on real live teachers.

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