Patrick slashes at Romney, urges Dems to grow a spine

Complete text of Deval Patrick's speech at the Democratic convention:

Mitt Romney talks a lot about all the things he's fixed. I can tell you that Massachusetts wasn't one of them.

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Don't forget

Tech and biotech.

All supported and pushed by Beacon Hill, the Governor, and local pols.

To key this discussion into the theme last night, The UMass university system adds over 5 billion in economic activity to the commonwealth through private/public partnerships, research, and educating a competent workforce.

Mitt Romney almost devastated the university system while he was here, and it's only now getting back up to it's previous standards.

Balancing a budget by zero'ing out your investments in the future is a piss poor thing to do. He did so by cutting funds from places where we've only now seen the problems of doing so; infrastructure, education, ect.

Check the 2012 scores

The 2011 scores are from their first turnaround year; most of their big changes were on a 2-year plan. A friend of mine works there, and while scores aren't publicly available until the end of the month, this person has given some oblique hints that the advanced/proficient percentages this year start with an 8 rather than a 3. Patrick probably has that same intel, and is holding it up as the strongest example of turnaround schools working properly.

Trust but verify

I'll check but:

What did they do and -

Is it sustainable (financially or managerially)?

Can it be replicated?

Can we reasonably afford to do this in multiple schools in multiple jurisdictions (especially poorer school districts - keep in mind Boston spends more per student than almost any district in the state - including all those Dubya towns, Hingham, Concord etc.)?

Keep in mind we coudn't even get the BTU, which enjoys some of the shortest classroom hours in the country, to extend the school day 45 minutes without demanding unaffordable salary increases.

I'm keeping an open mind - but remain skeptical. My personal opinion is that longer school days, obviously otherwise well managed, will give you the biggest bang for your buck - but we apparently can't even afford that.

I missed the speech

Did he mention Marian Walsh?

Did he mention the Cadillac and the drapes?

How about Carl Stanley Msgee?

Or his call to Citigroup, on behalf of sub-prime lender Ameriquest--his previous employer during a brief foray into the private sector?

How about the ongoing grand jury investigation of his Liuetenant Governor and fund-raising irregularities by Michael MacDonald?

Or the other grand jury Corrections thingy? Or the Mistah Speakah hat trick?

I take it back

that these are the things some are worried about and talking about are testament to the strength of our economy and state.

Really, the GOP wonders why they're 11% and dropping here?

If

you think this is corruption, you don't get out much to the other 49.

Not saying that we shouldn't be diligent against it. Just that this is child's play compared to Jersey, Chicago or Texas.

You don't need to go that far afield...

... I think looking at Rhode Island or either of the congressmen in NewHamster would be sufficient.

I grew up in post-Prendergast Missouri. Here in the Bay State, Honey Fitz and James Michael Curley have been gone a LONG time. Conservative whinging and liberal purity trolls do not make our current system corrupt.

Money does, however, in sufficient quantities :)

Corruption....

I wouldn't defend corruption either, but I often think we're an easy market for rags like the Herald. If you don't look outside of MA, and all you do is read the Herald and listen to WRKO, you'll never know that our economy is doing alright and where there is government and power there is corruption, regardless of party or ideology.

Not only that, but I often feel that it isn't that MA is particularly corrupt. I believe 100% that power corrupts, and every city and state government in the world has some corruption. Do we have more? Or, is MA the kind of place that actually ferrets it out, and prosecutes it? If you really believe that republicans are incapable of corruption, that the most red of red states is a lawful nirvana, I've got a bridge for you.

A $50 Lesson:

I recently asked my friends’ little girl what she wanted to be when she grows up. She said she wanted to be President of the United States. Both of her parents, liberal Democrats, were standing there. So I asked her, “If you were President, what would be the first thing you would do?” She replied, “I’d give food and houses to all the homeless people.” Her parents beamed.

“Wow…that a worthy goal,” I told her. “But you don’t have to wait until you’re President to do that. You can come over to my house and mow the lawn, pull the weeds, and sweep my driveway, and I’ll pay you $50. Then I’ll take you over to the grocery store where the homeless guy hangs out, and you can give him the $50 to use toward food and a new house.”

She thought that over for a few seconds, then she looked me straight in the eye and asked, “Why doesn’t the homeless guy come over and do the work, and you can just pay him the $50?” I said, “Welcome to the Republican Party.” Her parents still aren’t speaking to me. -unknown.

Nonsense

Any real Republican worth his GOP credentials would tell the girl to get lost once he knew he could get the homeless guy to do the job for $10 because he's desperate for the money instead of $50 just because it was an initial offer to a motivated little girl. Then he'd take the extra $40 and divert it to a lawncare holding company in the Caymans so he wouldn't have to pay any taxes on it.

$50? Should be free.

Problem is, of course, that only a child (lacking knowledge)or an adult lacking empathy would think that every homeless person, poor person, or disabled person is capable of working. Sorry, but your fable is full of holes. There has NEVER been a society that doesn't have poor people, homeless people, etc. You can go the world around, and find super conservative states that offer NO welfare, and you'll still find people living on the streets. Perhaps, some of them do so by choice, and others do so because they don't have the physical or mental means to earn a living. Leave the republican party and join the real world, wherein society is measured not by how rich one might become, but by how they treat the poorest and weakest. It might bother you that society asks each of us to chip in to keep some from peril, but that is another lesson taught to children. You know, that sharing is good, that you help others, and compassion is a virtue.

Making everything free does

Making everything free does nothing but devalue everything. Why work for anything if everything has lost its value?

If you want to be compassionate, donate your own time and money to charity. Don't be asking everyone else to pony up their own time and hard earned money.

Free?

So you're telling us that if a person works, let's say two poorly paying jobs, but still needs to sleep inside at night and eat too, welfare is "free?"

Or, are you saying that people who are unfit to work shouldn't get assistance from government?

If you can't grasp the concept of shared responsibility, as in "how great societies work" there's nothing more I can tell you.

Look to the Middle East for a good example of how YOUR thinking works. You know, palaces for the rich, huge slave class, and poor people living in squalor. I'm sure if they'd just get off the street, however, they'd soon find themselves living in a castle too...with a little hard work, right?

Here's a concept for you. The way we're living right now works like this: In order for those at the top to be as wealthy as humanly possible, the middle class has to stop supporting the poor, and work full time supporting the rich.

Umm - that's not how it works

The middle class DOES support the rich (the rich get rich by charging a margin over the wages and work product of the middle class who work all those 9-5 and beyond jobs that make the rich all their money). The middle class pays very little in federal taxes, in fact almost nothing and for about half of them literally nothing. the rich pay almost all of the taxes which go to support the poor and a few other items - like wars and homeland security.

Not these days

The majority of the rich these days don't have to deal with employees at all to get rich. The idea that the rich are "job creators" is a total farce. Instead, they bet money that money will make money and make money when money makes money and also when money doesn't make money because someone lost money but they took out an insurance policy on that money so that they'd still make money. Then, they take their money and use it to make more money by betting on even more money.

Money.

Also, the middle class pay plenty of federal taxes, like payroll taxes, consumption taxes, etc. They don't end up paying extra income taxes...but that's hardly necessary since the 50% you're quoting not paying "federal taxes" don't exactly make enough income to survive these days. Meanwhile, the rich paying all that federal income tax...are getting away with a base rate of 15% since all their money is from capital gains these days and IF they even own a business of any sort, they claim tons of business losses to avoid paying taxes on their non-financially gained income.

If only it were so easy

All of what you say probably lowers their returns - but minimizes losses in down markets. Granted, when you have tens of millions - you are usually happy making 4% instead of 6%. The stats are overwhelmingly clear - the vast majority of the 1% earned their wealth and the vast majority of those did it by creating companies and products that many of us use (including things like blogs and the internet - in spite of what Al Gore says!)

Payroll taxes are not taxes - they are government run insurance and not sure what consumption taxes you are talking about other than fairly nominal taxes on gasoline, utilities and the like. The vast majority of that 50% makes enough to get by on (and keep in mind it includes a lot of retirees who live off of SS savings and like some people I know that survive on cash businesses/jobs and definitely way underpay their income taxes). At a time when I literally can't find an air conditioning service person to come over for less than $250 an hour or an elevator repair person for under $150 an hour - I have little sympathy unless you are physically or mentally unable to hold a job.

For the record - I am all for a moderately higher tax rate (across the board) as well as a more progressive capital gains rate and massive reform of our estate taxes - which in my opinion should be used to pay down our debt. One of the reasons people can afford to be this rich during their lives is that they were not taxed enough. I think estate taxes should literally and figuratively be the great equalizer. If the super rich want to pour that money back into the economy before they die - no problem, but sheltering hundreds of millions and even billions from taxes for generations to come is ridiculous.