WakeEd

The WakeEd blog is devoted to discussing and answering questions about the major issues facing the Wake County school system. How will the new student assignment plan balance diversity, stability, proximity and stability? How will Jim Merrill replace Tony Tata as the new superintendent of the state's largest district? How will voters react to a $810 million school construction bond referendum on Oct. 8 ballot? How will this fall's school board elections impact the future of the district?

WakeEd is maintained by The News & Observer's Wake schools reporter, T. Keung Hui. While Keung posts information and analysis on the issues, keep us posted on your suggestions, questions, tips and what you're doing to cope with the changes in Wake's schools.

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Americans for Prosperity demanding retractions from Brave New Films and The Huffington Post

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Dallas Woodhouse, president of the North Carolina chapter of Americans for Prosperity, is calling the new video linking the conservative group with the 2009 Wake County school board elections "a series of outright lies" and libelous."

In a statement today, Woodhouse said AFP's legal team has asked for retractions from Brave News Films and The Huffington Post for claiming that AFP bankrolled the winning school board candidates in 2009. Both liberal groups made the claim to try to charge that the conservative Koch brothers, who founded Americans for Prosperity, are responsible for the end of Wake's diversity policy and the resulting student assignment changes.

"Americans for Prosperity did not spend one single dime on those elections nor did AFP spend funds on independent electioneering communication activities during that election cycle," Woodhouse said. "Moreover, Americans for Prosperity was not engaged in any nonpartisan Get-Out-The-Vote activity or in issuing any voter education material. In sum, Americans for Prosperity had no presence during the 2009 Wake County School Board race."

Woodhouse said they're demanding retractions for three claims, two made in the video, and one in an article in The Huffington Post.

On the first claim, Woodhouse denies the assertion in the film by Bob Geary of the liberal Independent weekly, that "Americans for Prosperity put hundreds of thousands of dollars and a lot of effort into helping the school board candidates first get organized and then nominated and elected."

"This is not only untrue, it is unsubstantiated," Woodhouse said. "Americans for Prosperity never surveyed, interviewed or met with candidates for the Wake School Board races on either side and certainly spent no money on this fictional program. No candidate has ever said this happened because it did not."

On the second claim, Woodhouse goes after statements made in the film by Sue Sturgis of the liberal Institute for Southern Studies that "Americans for Prosperity played a very important role in the Wake County elections."

"What role is that?" Woodhouse said. "Did Sue follow the money? If so what did she find? Did she find campaign finance reports with Americans for Prosperity’s name on them? Again, AFP played no role in the 2009 WCPSS election."

On the third claim made by the Huffington Post, Woodhouse challenges the statement that the school board candidates in 2009 "were bankrolled by Americans for Prosperity."

"Not only is this statement false, it accuses AFP of a criminal violation of law," Woodhouse said. "Since corporations are prohibited from providing contributions to candidates, it would be illegal for Americans for Prosperity to 'bankroll' candidates.

A journalist who quickly looks online to do due diligence would have easily found that corporations are not permitted to 'bankroll/' candidates in North Carolina. This was nothing more than a hit piece, and the author did not concern himself with the truth."

1313516569 Americans for Prosperity demanding retractions from Brave New Films and The Huffington Post The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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DanofNC, User1234, Bullip9999 This is for you

I was so glad today when I read this article about this evil Republican getting arrested for voter fraud. I was so proud of our DA and the Courts of  Wake County bringing this "presumed innocent (LOL)" man to justice. People like this need to be behind bars for such corruption. Danof NC, it looks like strong government wins. It shows the system works and we are getting our hard earned tax dollars worth. Go DA !!!

http://www.newsobserver.com/2011/08/17/1419037/raleigh-man-89-arrested-for-voter.html

 

tea party less popular than atheists and Muslims

 

Robert D. Putnam, a professor of public policy at Harvard, and David E. Campbell, a political scientist at Notre Dame, say they have collected data indicating that the tea party is "less popular than much maligned groups like 'atheists' and 'Muslims.'"  But Campbell says the tea party was really an afterthought in their research.
 
The professors were following up on research they conducted in 2006 and 2007 for their book "American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us" and decided to add the tea party and atheists to their list of survey queries. That put the tea party below 23 other entries--including Barack Obama, Sarah Palin, Republicans and Democrats--that the professors included on their survey of "a representative sample of 3,000 Americans."  Campbell and Putnam's survey "casts doubt on the tea party's 'origin story,' " they write in the Times.  Early tea partiers were described as "nonpartisan political neophytes," Campbell and Putnam write, but their findings showed that tea partiers were "highly partisan Republicans" who were more likely than others to have contacted government officials.  "They are overwhelmingly white, but even compared to other white Republicans, they had a low regard for immigrants and blacks long before Barack Obama was president, and they still do," they went on.  In addition to being socially conservative, the study found  a close tie between religion and the tea party, whose supporters seek out "deeply religious" elected officials.  "This helps to explain why candidates like Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry are just as much about the public presentation of themselves as religious people as fiscal conservatives," Campbell told The Ticket.

That's great news User1234

I hope that all liberals read this and relax. The Tea Party is just "astroturf" according to Nancy Pelosi. I just don't understand why they even get news coverage, afterall they are just a fringe element and made up of senile radicals and idiots.  In fact, the Tea Party is not even organized and have no real leaders or platform. I guess you can sleep well in November next year knowing that. I even heard Sen. Reid said they will disappear before the next election. Thanks for the article.

VOR ... the problem is that

VOR ... the problem is that the tea party is the only group wanting to live within our means.  Republicans love war but don't want to pay for it and the have a lot of baggage - social issues, religious entanglement, etc.   

User1234

Are you a Ron Paul supporter too?

That makes no sense, and

That makes no sense, and what is presented as analysis is nonsense. Many Tea Party candidates enjoy significant support across the nation where many were elected into office over the past couple election cycles... and more will be elected in upcoming elections. There is no way muslim and atheist candidates would get even a tiny fraction of the support that Tea Party candidates received.  

I am not a member of the Tea Party and have not even been to one of their events, but there is no denying that they are a force in politics today. So, any claims of their unpopularity are just ridiculous.

Hint Woodstock

There is no formal Teaparty, just some people that claim their "flavor" is the real "Tea Party." It's like saying you are a member of the Conservative Party.

It is more than your

It is more than being a standard issue conservative. I know it is not an actually or officially a political "party" but they do have events and the people who attend those events usually come to some kind of a consensus about particular candidates... i.e, Bachmann is Tea Party, Romney is not. They are a subset of the conservatives -- and libertarians -- that are more attuned to government as defined by the Constitution; so, maybe I am part of the Tea Party... never really thought about it before.

Now you got it

Scott Brown in Mass. was elected because of the tea party, but he is a RINO and will not get their support next time. He was a "useful tool" only. There were several call to arms via e-mail to many conservative groups that support the Tea Party ideals (basically smaller government as defined by the Constitution) to support him financially and money came pooring in from throughout the country. That election slowed down Obama's big government agenda. This to me showed the power of the "Tea Party". The elections of 2010 showed the Republican Party a lot of us were tired of the blue bloods and their big government spending (AKA RINOS) and many "Tea Party" Republicans got elected. The best way to sum up the Tea Party  is by watching this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMBZDwf9dok

Woodstock delete

.... State Superintendent Atkinson.  It is believed her attendance was that of a supervisor simply supporting an employee. My mistake in selecting part of the remarks to post that included DPI as well.

Huh? You really think that

Huh? You really think that is your only mistake? LOL!!

At least....

I am sure you are keeping tally.  But...Woodstock, at least I know how to spell and use spell check, Mr. Desprate............ROTFLmyAxxO...............LOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!

Spelling? Really?

Spelling? Really?

For all the iffy...

borderline illegal things the AFP does on a regular basis, they seems to have found a lot self-righteousness all of a sudden.

And the fight started when.........

WAKE COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION

BOARD MEETING MINUTES- REVISED

December 1, 2009

Participating in the ceremony of Deborah Prickett is her son, Grayson Prickett. Mrs.

Prickett made the following comments following the Swearing In; “I thank my family who is

here today. They have been so supportive and wonderful. My father who is here today, raised us the right

way. He always made sure he voted in every election and he is quite a citizen and role model for my sister

and I. I would like to thank all of the Wake Schools Community Alliance. This group of parents is from a

grassroots effort in Wake County, this group helped to make so much of this possible. On top of that, this

was a non-partisan race, but as you know, it became fairly political. I want to thank Claude Pope and the

Republican Party for stepping up to the plate. They endorsed me and have helped so much in this campaign.

They are totally for families and children in this county. I want to say a big thank you to Claude Pope. The

Taxpayers Association is with us here today, we’re starting out on the right foot, three people have paid for

our reception; Joe Cuilla, Sarah Redpath, and Kristin Stocking. In addition, I work with somebody who is

very special, Dr. June St. Clair Atkinson, the State Superintendent. Dr. Atkinson is important to this

whole process because she has set the framework for all of the schools in the state of North Carolina along

with our State Board of Education. Thank you very much for all that you do, I honor you very much.   and on and on!!!!!

I had always felt that Mrs.

I had always felt that Mrs. Prickett thanked the Republicans for backing her financially for the following reasons:  she spent a lengthy part of her career as a school counselor at various schools and when she approached the NCAE for an endorsement and financial backing as an Independent they said no (Dems would get that support) but not others.  After years of helping ALL kids get services they need that is the way she was treated (pretty partisan IMO).  She had volunteers that were Dems/Unaffil/Reps but the parties and powers that be pretty much said no.  I am under the impression that Dr. Atkinson is a Dem. but was there as a co-worker/employee support.   Mrs. Prickett thanked people out of respect/courtesy/ and good manners.   

is this conjecture or do you have proof?

Did Prickett ask for support from the NCAE? 

I googled the prior blogs

I googled the prior blogs and Mr. Hui referenced this on 8/20/2009.  I think she also referenced it in one of her campaign stops--shame isn't it.  But it gives some context to the situation.  If I were in her shoes (working for the school system for so long and then not getting endorsed, I'd be disappointed too.)  

maybe

Does that post give a reason why?  Maybe they had a reason other than politics. 

You are kidding, right?

You are kidding, right?  NCAE is as political as it gets.

So I guess that response

So I guess that response says you have no idea.  It's pretty funny for you to criticize anyone else for being "as political as it gets"

That started it all, eh? So

That started it all, eh? So the GOP, WSCA, State Superintendent June Atkinson and the NC State Board of Education are in cahoots with AFP and the Koch Bros.? Damn, who would have ever guessed that?! Politics does indeed make mighty stange bedfellows. Lord-a-mighty!

 Boy, that just riles me up and gits my blood a bolin'. Those dad gum billionaire oil barons better quit  a messin' wid us. Yesiree, they better git on back to where they came from.

?????

Ebonics???????? No wonder you can't spell!!!

Huh? No, not ebonics, you

Huh? No, not ebonics, you dolt. LOL

uh...

Claude Pope != Art Pope != AFP

Completing the dot matrix

AFP!=Koch brothers!=ALEC!  Eliminating WCPSS's Diversity Policy is analogous to Gov. Scott Walker eliminating ...everything!

UNreality

Just to reiterate an obvious point that others have alluded to. Everyone interviewed in this political advertisement is a long term political activist - professional or with some entrenched extreme political group - or their families. Even the students all seem to be associated with some established group or politician. Makes it all that much more transparent that its not 'announcing news' but sensationalizing an extreme political position. 

And it was hyped on a 'news' program. Unbelievable. 

None of it has anything to do with real people or educational reality in Wake County. 

For the Record

In my interview with Brave New Films I said repeatedly that AFP had little to no impact on the elections in 2009, that it was far more the efforts of grassroots groups like WSCA, and general frustration with constant re-assignments brought about by growth.  The election results where far more a function of the old Board trying to govern, and not playing politics than anything AFP might have done.  WSCA, more than AFP or the GOP for that matter,  were responsible for organizing and capturing the frustration that lead to the results in '09.   Pope and Luddy money did help give the opposition legs, but not the Koch Brothers.

I did say AFP tried to fan the flames after the election and propigate the false notion that most of our issues were a result of the diversity policy, not growth, and that MYR was a result of conservative's killing '99 school bond.  

I am no fan of AFP, nor the Koch brothers, and I believe they would prefer segregated schools between the have's and have nots, but this film is a misrepresentation of what happened in 2009.  I told BNF that then, and will re-iterate that today. 

The reason I agreed to be interviewed by BNF is because I wanted avoid an obvious hit piece that further nationalizes our school board because I do not think that is good for our schools or our community.  I have not seen video yet, but apparently they took only one of my comments to further their naritive, and ignored everything else I told them. This in no way aids anyone I would support for the BoE. 

Okay, I've now watched the

Okay, I've now watched the video.

My comments were refering to AFP's involvement post election, and their efforts to fan the flames to take advantage of it, but I will unequivically state that it was WSCA, with the help of Pope and Luddy, that tapped into frustrations brought about by growth, that were largely responsible for the results in the 09 races, not the Koch Brothers.  That said, the general point of the video that Koch Brothers support of neighborhood schools will lead to re-segregated schools is factually correct, will cost us more money, harm our economy, and many of our children's ability to get a quality education.  However, that is somewhat moot because even John T. has said we can't have straight neighborhood schools because some would be over crowded and some would be empty.

We must move forward and I support Superintendent Tata's efforts to find a plan that brings the community together and considers student achievement when making assignment choices.  We need healthy schools and healthy students.  As Superintendent Tata stated, 'It costs more to fix them, than to keep them healthy." 

...

The reason I agreed to be interviewed by BNF is because I wanted avoid an obvious hit piece...

And what did you think it would be? Tell me how the filmmakers presented their concept to you. There is absolutely no way you didn't know exactly what these filmmakers were doing. And you happily joined them. It is extremely disingenuous of you to say that you wanted to avoid something by being part of it.

And now you have the nerve to claim "We must move forward...". You really have lost all your credibility with your involvement in this video.

Sideburns, I've never had

Sideburns,

I've never had credibility with you nor your friends in large part because you all are pretty closed minded.  That is fine.  The fact is I was told the angle of this group was the Koch's hijacked the elections, and I went and repeatedly said that was not true, but that AFP had become involved after the election, and were promoting a narritive that said the previous elections were all about diversity, and 'neighborhood schools', which they were not, and what they were supporting would lead to re-segreated schools along class lines, and that would harm are economy.  That is all true.

I have never said anything on this blog that wasn't factully true, and have put my name behind everything I have said.  Same can not be said for you and many others on this blog.  No one has to agree with me, but I sleep at night just fine, and my credibility is completely intact with myself and anyone who is thinking and rational.

Really?

I don't think you're that naieve.  If you were told what their angle was, did you really think that you were going to take the parts where you said that their angle was wrong?

"...my credibility is

"...my credibility is completely intact with myself and anyone who is thinking and rational."

No it's not; not by a long shot. Thinking and rational people see right through you. You are a liar, but you aren't stupid. It is impossible that you thought Greenwald was going to present a fair and balanced story. It's not like he hasn't produce this kind of offensive nonsense before. It is what he does for chrissakes. Stop lying, you knew damn well what you were getting involved in... so did everyone who appeared in the video. Claims of ignorance doesn't cut it.

LOL

Sorry I haven't stopped laugh since I read the last paragraph.....I guess it is true, if you lie to yourself long enough you start to believe it! Good night and sleep well with your "credibility"(LOL) intact....Really?

...

I was told the angle of this group was the Koch's hijacked the elections, and I went and repeatedly said that was not true...

And then proceeded to be filmed for the video -- knowing exactly what it was about.

I did have some respect for you, Perry. Especially after we chatted and had coffee. You seemed sincere and actually concerned about education. This, however, has completely changed my mind.

FWIW...this video makes you all seem rather nutty. It's too bad you let these people take advantage of you.

You are just completely full

You are just completely full of it. I don't believe for even a second you have not seen the video. It is no secret what Greewald's motives are so don't even try to plead ignorance.

 

 "I wanted avoid an obvious hit piece..."

LOLOL!!  Well Bozo, once again your strategy failed misrerably. Fortunately, everyone connected to the video comes off looking like compete a$$es. 

Perry, I'm glad to see you

Perry,

I'm glad to see you here defending yourself (hopefully you gave my best to the Wizard).

Honestly, I'm still disappointed.  You appearance in the film doesn't look good.  I truly thought you a wiser man. 

Todd

Todd, I do not know who 'the

Todd,

I do not know who 'the wizard' is.  I stand by my statement in the film based on AFP's actions post election in '09, but they did leave out a lot I did say giving WSCA credit, not the Koch Brothers for the results in '09.

You know Perry, the truth

You know Perry, the truth this video did tell was what an obvious complete moron Rita Rakeshaw is.  I'm going to assume the editor's of the film tried to pick the best clips of her and that is scary.  Now that she's put herself in this position, I feel perfectly comfortable calling her a moron.  You should be more careful with whom you associate yourself.

Yes, poor, poor Rita, bless

Yes, poor, poor Rita, bless her heart. I sincerely feel sorry for that woman. I am sure she is a fine person, but she just doesn't need to be on camera... and certainly not when she is talking.

The "wizard" was a Wizard of

The "wizard" was a Wizard of Oz referrence.....where you went to get the courage to come here and defend yourself.  Not nearly as funny now....

Thanks but no thanks

Well, thanks for the nod Perry but frankly on some level I'm glad they missed your point. Any sane person wouldn't want any more  'attention' from these myth-makers. 

Thanks...

For clearing that up. I will have to re-watch the video to see what of yours they quoted.

 You may want to watch the film because it clearly nationalized our school board. 

free enterprise

I just watched this video again.  I found it very interesting that they put a clip of one of the Koch brothers saying only "free enterprise and capitalism is alive and well".

Is that supposed to be something bad?

Dan, help me out of this buddy?  I don't get it (as you would say).

I haven't watched the

I haven't watched the video.

Reasons:

1) My district isn't up for grabs this year.

2) Basically any video by any political group is going to stretch the truth up to if not past the breaking point. 

3) I don't really know or care about the Koch brothers. 

4) I don't really care who did or didn't give money to who 2 years ago.

5) I don't really care for people who play the race card.  "Resegregation" is just as useless a term to me as "forced busing".

But this video includes

But this video includes statements from people in your community that are part of your ideology and that have, or have had,  roles in the political arena and the media, aren't you interested at all in how your side is depicted in this widely disseminated video? It is wildly offensive and inaccurate. If I was a Democrat (God forbid) I would be outraged at the lies and deception.  As a Republican, I can only laugh at the incredible tone deafness of it all. Only a complete moron could accept the lies that are spewed.

I will add, I will look at past news footage about events  in our nation's history in a whole new light. I know what happened here in Wake County and it bears no resemblance at all to what is depicted on the video. 

Embarrassing ...

As a left leaning unaffiliated voter, I find the lack of facts and outright lies to be outrageous. Typically Greenwald is a better journalist than this. He and Geary should be embarrassed, admit their screw-up, and be more careful. If not, thoughtful voters will be quick to discount their work in the future.

If not, thoughtful voters

If not, thoughtful voters will be quick to discount their work in the future.
 

Done. The future is here.

Well, if I was a Republican,

Well, if I was a Republican, I'd be mortified that you felt like you spoke for me.

I would be just as mortified

I would be just as mortified if you thought I or anyone spoke for you. I would never be so presumptive as to think I speak for anyone but myself. Good heavens, this is the USA where individual freedom and the right to free speech is honored (by some).

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About the blogger

T. Keung Hui covers Wake schools.
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