Err. Some shameless self-promotion. But you know, I am trying a "business," or as my husband calls it my "hobby." On good days.
This little site of mine, I'm the only one who's gonna make it shine. It is me on my own.
And I work full time, with five Honors Government classes and a stupid amount of grading, paperwork, self assessment, and collaboration with my peers.... and that is my day job. By night I am a full time mom, scout leader, tutor, reading coach, taxi service, laundress...
Look, I know we are all in the same boat. You, too, do a stupid amount of work. In fact, I have a little blurb taped to my laptop from my HS's PTSA that says, "I teach. What is your superpower?"
Soo silly. But sometimes the right amount of silliness keeps me going. So let me help you keep going! I post three to four articles, blogposts, or other things I find relevant to teaching. Much of it is trying to find examples of processes, relationships, power struggles, that we teach about daily. It goes up on FB/Twitter. You also are notified of my latest literary contribution in the field of teaching and loving government.
So, like or follow me. Let me help you cut some corners, and be a govguru.
This morning the SCOTUS is hearing NRLB v Noel Canning, a case spotlighting the power of recess appointments and whether or not pro forma sessions can prevent them from happening.
Specifically, when the Democrat controlled Senate failed to achieve permission from the Republican controlled House to adjourn, the Senate reconvened once every three days only to state that no business would be heard during the next business day three days later.
These thirty second sessions are the essential question before the court: Can the President legally complete a recess appointment during this time period? The POTUS contends that these sessions were a fake, and that he can get his recess appointments to take hold. Opponents are critical of this assertion, stating his actions were unconstitutional.
An interesting legal question for sure. If you are on the hunt for more background, check out this seven minute clip from NPR, or coverage from SCOTUSblog.
I am scrolling through my social media feeds, and noticing that there is a heck of a lot of strife going on now... Egypt... Syria... Ukraine... Spain... US...
It's pretty cool to remember that because we have the right to association, petition, and redress... we have a lot more control, influence... whatever you want to say about that... then people in other corners of the world.
We're squabbling over those things that Locke and Jefferson pointed out as our unalienable rights...
Government expenditures, social policy, restructuring institutional debt in place like Detroit, distribution of resources, government regulation of industries, and just plain old government corruption.
This last resources is a really fun one... allowing you to interact with the data. There are also great visualization of the data in the brochure towards the bottom. Tons to talk about here... so how do you plan on using it?
**Diane Rehm. My hero.**
Took a quick drive to get some holiday fixin's yesterday... and lucked my way into listening to a phenomenal panel review of the implications from the Nuclear Option (Duhn-duhn-duhn).
Talk about some big hitters in to chat it up for a full 51.41. (You probably don't have time to listen to the entire thing, but the first three minutes are about the Iran nuclear treaties... and after minute 34, they open the lines to callers.)
But we get to hear insight from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Former Senator Olympia Snowe, Norm Ornstein from AEI, Jonathan Weisman of the NYT and Stephen Dinan of the Washington Times.
Oh, happy holidays, government teachers who want some great sound bites...
AND OMG DID I TELL YOU ABOUT THIS? InfoGRAPHIC! (oooooohhhhhh) about the Silent filibuster!!! YAY!!!
Yes, there are problems. Here is a great analysis of what is wrong, beyond just the website.
The ever-evolving saga of Boehner's leadership is now entering a fevered pitch. Shockingly, even Obama is remarking publicly on the Speaker's lack of ability to control his caucus.
Yesterday was to be a big deal for Boehner, presenting the latest proposal from the GOP to his caucus. The above newspaper article from the Orange County Register catalogs the daily ins and outs of the latest proposal, from opening hymns of Amazing Grace to the final KO from the House Rules Committee to table the bill indefinitely. (Note the time is PDT, so +3 hrs).
The National Journal has a nice article written from two journalists who were in the halls of Congress yesterday, from an eye witness perspective.
So, if this is the case, where do we go from here? Politico says no where but towards a default. Some members of Congress say, "No big deal." (Like Rand Paul) Perhaps the Treas will be able to find some creative accounting after all, even though they stressed they do not have the ability to do so. There is not even consensus in the public, as evidenced by the poll taken by the Pew Center below.
And in the fall out of all of this (if we even make it past October 17th and beyond), where do constituents look to place the blame? Incumbents, beware. I guess the only good news to Obama is that the term limits save him from the humiliation of rejection by the American people. Can't say the same for his friends and foes over on the Hill.
Speaking of incumbents, probably my favorite blame game quote comes from a Boehner insider... And if I look to the timeline above, is it conspicous that Cruz and Lee skipped the GOP Senate luncheon yesterday? I wonder what they have up their sleeve today for floor discussions about the Reid-McConnell bill... Perhaps this angle will save the Speaker?
Asked how Boehner gets out of this mess, a GOP lawmaker close to Boehner responded, “With a clear, consistent history of what actually happened. … to remind everybody we had a grand strategy until Cruz played the stupid card.”
Heard an interesting blurb today. Some members of Congress don't think that default would be all that bad; that we could prioritize spending.
Whether or not it is doable or not, here is a break down of what we do owe...
Here is a brief explanation from a few TPers who explain this belief. (And if you need a basic rundown of the default, here is a gr.)
Depends on who you talk to. Obama says no. GOP says perhaps. Even the market experts can decide. Bloomsburg Business gives us a run down on what might happen, which they say is not in the post-apocalyptical range.
Our first SCOTUS case on the docket is possibly the most important one to me... Campaign Finance Legislation. OMG. Don't get me started on this one. I will have lesson plans up later in the year as I approach that topic. Probably around early November.
I couldn't wait, though. This is one of those issues that just gets me going. Maybe you, too.
Frontline did a great job looking at this during the last fall election cycle. That would be "Big Sky, Big Money." It is so good, that I do have my students watch this full episode of frontline. There is so much to talk about in this, but there is a great interview of Jim Bopp, one of the lawyers who brought Citizens United to the SCOTUS.
And just in time for this court case, the Sunlight Foundation released new research on Koch brother backed special interest.
I don't know if this is legitimate or not, but I found this to be an awesome example of inventiveness and peaceful protest from our federal workers. WTG.
Today, I needed NEEDED to have access to LOC.gov. Guessssss whaaaat? It is non-essential. Fear not! Here is your hook up, along with a few other cool websites about the shut down...
1. Archived .gov websites
2. Some fun visual resources... including my favorite which shows time in normal operating conditions versus non-normal operating conditions since 1976...
3. More visual graphics on the proposed FY 2014 budget...
4. And my absolutely favorite budget resource. You can find the FY14 budget broken out comparatively in an awesome visual feast. I have this one hanging on the wall in my classroom. Remember, this is only covering the portion of the budget that is NOT mandatory spending...
Photo via Flickr/Ted Eytan