A New Era of Student Activism?

As a baby boomer liberal I have often despaired over the fact that for the past 40 years the USA has become much more conservative.

This march to the right has coincided with a long period of “student apathy.” Since the Vietnam war ended in 1973, most college students have focused on: (A) having a good time; and (B) preparing for their careers.   Except for a tiny handful at the most liberal campuses, “student political activists” almost disappeared.

Nash 2.5

Nash 2.5

I recently retired as a professor at one of the smaller campuses in the University of Maine System. For the last 23 years I have watched in disgust as the Maine state legislature gradually shifted the cost of education to students and their families by always “increasing” the university’s funding at less than the rate of inflation. The state paid 80% of the cost of college in the 1970s; it now pays less than 40%. Most full-time U Maine students must work while in school, many as much as 40 hours a week, to help pay the cost of their education. For their money, students get fewer choices. On my campus alone, I have seen a dozen majors eliminated over the years, mostly in the liberal arts, which were deemed “less critical” by administrators and trustees.

For decades, students have accepted these conditions (higher costs, more work off campus, and fewer liberal arts options) with silence.

But no more.

Recently, there has been what can only be called a “student uprising” at the second largest campus in the University of Maine System, the University of Southern Maine (USM), located in Portland. I have provided a link below to just one of the stories covering this, but there have been DAILY similar news articles and opinion pieces in both of Maine’s major newspapers, for weeks. Just do a Google News search using “University of Southern Maine,” and you’ll see what I mean.

20140412_596133_xml-20140410_protest004Portland Press Herald: USM deserves steadfast leadership

What happened at USM was that the campus president decided to cut a dozen faculty positions and eliminate several majors, mostly in the liberal arts. Students immediately occupied the administration building, and stayed there for weeks. They did not interfere with workers, but sat along the walls in the hallways, so the campus police left them alone. (Maine has a small population and everyone knows everyone else, or at least knows someone who knows you, so cops here would not dream of “cracking the skulls” of students who were peacefully demonstrating.)

And the old model of “radical student groups” of the 60s was not driving this.  This demonstration, like the “Occupy” movement, or the various “Arab Spring” movements, did not have any centralized organizational structure; instead social media like Facebook and Twitter were used to spontaneously create and sustain a movement that was a true “network,” with no center and no formal leaders.

The result? An abrupt reversal by an embarrassed administration. All the faculty jobs were saved, and most of the majors restored.

This startling result surprised most of U Maine’s faculty and staff, and made me aware of what seems to be an increase in student activism, nationally. For example…

1554412_512297012208685_2052219118173467018_nDaily Kos: Students Sit-In, Rally to Get Washington University to Cut Ties With Peabody Coal

If anyone can correct the messes that conservatives have made (and are still making) of our democracy, our economy, and the natural environment, college students seem to be the logical vanguard. They are in the process of getting better-educated, as young people they tend to be more idealistic, and they will have to deal with the long-term consequences of what’s going on.

So I ask Trailmixers…

  • Do you see any evidence of increased college student activism in your locale?
  • If so, what can the rest of us non-students do to help them?
  • Does anyone know how to use Facebook and Twitter? (I sure don’t.)

– Nash 2.5 is a Trail Mix Contributor

87 thoughts on “A New Era of Student Activism?

  1. nash, looks like activism these days is mostly done not by youthful student activists but by long in the tooth reactionary-ists. example are the gun-totin’ gang that came out in support of ole cliven, hannity’s latest hero.
    from bloomberg article

    Let’s dispense with niceties: Bundy is a freeloading scofflaw, a welfare queen in a Stetson who claimed what wasn’t his. He took subsidies from U.S. taxpayers and refused to pay the $1.2 million he owed for using federal — make that our — land.

    jon stewart ‘s 2 segments apocalypse cow protesters and their hero the welfare rancher

  2. Craig.Crawford:
    it would be so cool if student activists and aging hippies could hook up

    Well. Yeah, that, but also a sharing of knowledge would be good too.
    Rangel was always on the right track with his attempts to have the draft reinstated as a way of raising the awareness of the young un’s.

  3. Hey all, GREAT reading here!

    Renee

    Terrific comment and well said.. Oh yes, you did Patsi proud!
    What nonsense all this talk on how Hillary should just stop already, she’s gonna be a Grandmother life’s complete, geez….

  4. Jon Stewart, Chelsea’s Baby, Crying Men, and Misogynists Like Erick Erickson [Videos]
    by Taylor Marsh

    Erick Erickson took up the Drudge line of attacking Clinton, her age, yesterday when substituting for Rush Limbaugh.

    From Salon.com, with Media Matters having the audio:

    “She’s going to be old!” Erickson noted. “I don’t know how far back they can pull her face!” he added.
    “Can I say that on the air? I don’t know. Maybe I shouldn’t,” Erickson continued. “You know what I mean, though!” he added.
    This is what the Republican right thinks about women of a certain age, with Erickson’s comments perfectly suited for Rush Limbaugh’s show. We’ve seen it on Drudge, too. The right’s “war on women” takes many forms and this is just one of them. However, the point is to keep women in their traditional place.

    So, not only are women “emotional,” but the first female candidate to have a fighting chance to be the Democratic nominee for president is also OLD, her face not appropriately youthful.

  5. This shift of costs to the students is pernicious. I graduated HS in 1961 in California. Even the worst of the schools offered five languages, several music programs, various levels of maths and sciences etc. CA was the jewel of the nations schools. If you chose to go into the state college system, the only costs were books and lab fees. You could get a great four year education for about $500 a year.

    The theft from the middle class is horrendous since it not only deprives young people of education and wealth but their future as well.

  6. According to DegreeRegistry.org, a general MBA can be obtained for as little as $6k and as high as $120k. If students would do a little research, they would find that it is not nearly as expensive to get a college degree.

  7. Good morning…lots of good reading. The cost of education as Zachary points out…is driving the protest. Just like money drove the OWS movement. It is that transformational economy. Resources are getting expensive, everywhere. And cost is so important as not to waste the tinier piles of $$ on worthless education. Hey, time is money and we can learn a lot faster than a four year degree.

  8. Hubby and I are struggling with the new dance of an early retirement…toes and egos bruised. I have realized that the retirement economy will drive a sector of the US of AA economy…it is why the push for baby boomers to retire early and quickly. Free up that retirement cash so younger Americans can eat. Step aside so younger Americans can work. We have hogged a few generations wealth and the great mass of the former cool generation is getting off of the stage.

  9. ZacharyC… welcome to the blog.

    Tony… thanks. And thanks for still bringing us Taylor Marsh.

    Haven’t heard of any student protests in NH… but if it’s starting to happen anywhere in this country… GOOD!

  10. BlondeW…
    When Rick decided to retire early… now almost 2 yrs ago… we got lots of advice. Basically the best stuff was about needing to have a plan as to what to do. He’s managing to keep himself kinda busy by giving a lot more time to organizations he’s interested in. He spent the winter skiing. And I’m still weaving. If I wasn’t, I’m sure there’d be times we’d be in each other’s way.

    He’s still trying to figure it out. I think it takes time… which is one thing a retiree has plenty of.

  11. Jamie: You could get a great four year education for about $500 a year.

    $500 still was a lot of money in 1961. minimum wage was $1 (went up to a whopping $1.25 in sept. ’61) and a cuppa was .05, gas was .35 and national parks were free.

  12. If there was a student protest movement could we old foggies even recognize it. It’s not like they are running out and burning down the ROTC building.
    I suspect that the way all the oldsters ran out and tried to co-op the OWS movement put a damper on sharing with older generations.

    They live in a different world.

    Jack

  13. Pat

    If gas was 35 cents where you were your state had a lot of taxes.
    My first Job was working at a gas station/truckstop in 1970. Gas sold for 24 cents and it was the highest gas around. the corner station in town was 19 cents.
    Coke was a nickel , a dime at the pool hall, it was colder. 2cent deposit on the bottle

    Jack

  14. Growing up on a farm, we bought our fuel in bulk.

    Diesel fuel was around 12 cents a gallon, gas around 20. Fuel was a relatively minor cost of operating. In 1973 the price jumped to about 50 cents a gallon over night, and never looked back.
    From that time on fuel and petroleum related products became one of the most costly and most closely watched of put costs.

    My dad blamed Nixon and Kissinger, sounded good to me.

  15. whskyjack,

    you’re right. i just guessed…. or the Alzheimer’s, you know.
    according to 1960s flashback

    Cost of a new home: $17,200.00
    Cost of a new car: $
    Cost of a first-class stamp: $0.04
    Cost of a gallon of regular gas: $0.31
    Cost of a dozen eggs: $0.57
    Cost of a gallon of Milk: $0.49

  16. we shoulda been paying more gas tax and making the gubmints use them for mass trans and for protecting the environment rather than giving subsidies to the big petro pigs.

  17. salon’s joan walsh

    Roger Ailes owns Cliven Bundy now: How dumb opportunism became a right-wing nightmare
    Sean Hannity has been the racist rancher’s top backer, and Fox and the GOP made him a cause. Now he’s their problem
    [....]
    Until now I’ve ignored Bundy because he’s an extremist and a freak, and even Glenn Beck has denounced him. I was reluctant to use him against the GOP. But as he’s gotten support from the likes of Paul and Perry, two respected 2016 candidates, plus regular backing from Hannity and Nevada Sen. Heller, he’s become a huge problem for the right.

  18. whskyjack,

    Some things never change, to wit: Old fogy knowledge is hopelessly dated and is suspect at best.

    Now, if Timothy Leary were to be reincarnated…

  19. RebelliousRenee: He’s still trying to figure it out.

    … with Rick’s expertise, there’s still plenty he can do and get paid for it, Renee (if he wants… and part-time). There is a huge demand for tech ability.
    He may not get paid what he got at HP, but a little money goes a long way when it’s extra.

    Hubby and I were discussing that just this morning. We don’t plan to stop the income any sooner than absolutely necessary, but even when/if we eventually do, we have so much to do around this property (things that never get done) that we’ll be busy for the rest of our lives… like it or not. Then there’s Emma, and she’s not about let me slack off anytime soon. Phew… makes me tired just thinking about it.

  20. Student activism today is very different from the 1960s.

    Social media allows highly effective organizing of protest actions with no need of a hierarchical leadership structure.

    Let’s face it, many, if not most, of the 1960s student “leaders” were egotistical, misogynistic, white males, who turned off many would-be activists with their domineering leadership styles and their rigid ideologies.

  21. Nash. LOL. I missed the great student protests at UofA by 4 months. Jerry Rubin had visited the campus the day before the Kent state killings urging students to organize against the war. Then Kent State happened. A couple days later students led by a wrestling team member who was rumored to be an FBI informant and agent provocateur burned a vacant building on campus (scheduled for demolition to make way for the new Student Center) and occupied the Supe Store in the basement of the old student center (which happened to house the bookstore, snack bar and PO. The protest went on for 13 days. Richard Shelby was the city attorney in Tuscaloosa. Tuscaloosa police and AL state troopers came in and made some arrests. Two weeks later school broke for the summer. I showed up 3 months after and was told about the happenings by one of my Poly Sci grad assistants (or was he an assistant prof?) who had been involved at some level. As I understand it, until the cops got involved the students were pretty much left alone to occupy the Supe Store.

    Occupy strikes me as the closest current thing to what happened at the UofA. At that time it was Vietnam (along with black and women’s rights movements to add a little fuel to the fire so to speak) that was the motivating factor. With Occupy it’s social and economic inequality. Ending Vietnam was easier than addressing the inequality that motivates the Occupy movement.

  22. They’ll need to choose their own cause(s). And it won’t be done over FB or Twitter—they’re so passé.

  23. I left school (Kenyon in ’60) because of the crappy instructors they were assigning to first-year core curriculum classes.

    We should have been out protesting that. Instead, too many of us squandered our time drinking and gambling.

    I did amass a wonderful library, and developed significant knowledge on my own.

  24. chloe,

    Rick has been offered numerous jobs since retiring. So far, he’s not interested. We’ve saved more than enough money to live… not an extravagant, but definitely a comfortable lifestyle. His retirement was not forced… it was willingly and giddily chosen by him.

    But the same way that 2 people are super happy and eagerly awaiting their marriage… it’s still an adjustment.

  25. Poobah, the details on the grad student protests are a bit sketchy, but I did note that half of the students who submitted proposals were approved. Nash’s insight on this would be welcome, him having until just, like, what?, yesterday been immersed in higher education. It seems to me that since it’s dissertations they’re talking about, any denial of funding would also be in part the fault of the denied student’s dissertation committee. By the time I got to the dissertation stage of my graduate education -- then changed directions and became an Outward Bound sailor/instructor -- I was getting no funding for any research and didn’t see a prospect for it. But then again I was working full time for the University and had been for a couple or three years. I’m sure some of my classmates who were still full time grad students working as grad assistants may have had access to funding to allow them to work on their dissertations, but I am assuming that to be the case.

  26. Leave or we’ll call your mommy? Really? When I worked with student services in the mid 70s we only called parents if their kid (21 or older -- back then that was the age of majority) had been injured, arrested or was missing -- and if they were injured or arrested and were capable of consenting, we only called if they said we could. For those under 21, in loco parentis allowed us to call, but even then we would carefully consider whether to call. Now that the age of majority is 18, in loco parentis wouldn’t apply to many college students.

  27. patd,

    To see those in current dollars I think mulitplying by 8 or 10 would work.

    My first “real” job paid $1.10/hour in 1962. I think the more telling is that I was earning $76K in 1991, that same job is paying less today. More important is that inflation has cut what was once a pay in the top 10% of the country to just middle income. I am making more today than in 1988, but it is barely enough to keep up with a house payment, truck payment and the utilities.

    On top of that I need boat parts. I work for boat parts.

  28. Craig.Crawford,

    Craig.Crawford: expecting 6 years of college

    I suspect the many decades since I was in a masters program much knowledge has been accumulated so that a two year program now needs six. Phd was a three maybe four, but no more than that. And, you were expected to go somewhere else for degrees, not sit around the ol club house where you picked up a BS.

  29. Welfare Rancher Cliven Bundy, Racist, Hero to Republican Right
    by Taylor Marsh

    THE WELFARE rancher who has Nevada Republican Senator Dean Heller proclaiming, “What senator Reid may call domestic terrorists, I call patriots,” now appears to have backed a stone cold racist. Sean Hannity joined him, as did the Republican right, including Greg Abbott, who’s up against Wendy Davis in Texas for governor.

    Cliven Bundy, besides illegally grazing and flouting U.S. law, is some piece of work and a racist, too.

    “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton.
    And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.” -

    Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy [New York Times]

  30. Craig:

    Those were doctoral students requesting their stipends be renewed.

    Doctoral students usually have 1/2 of the teaching load of faculty, but get only get 1/4 of the salary, which they have to live on as most doctoral programs DO NOT permit students to have any “outside employment.” Doctoral students don’t pay tuition but they usually have to pay “fees” which can be substantial. Many are married with kids and live in near-poverty.

    Doctoral students are exploited by universities; they are assigned to teach high enrollment low-level courses that faculty don’t want to teach, because it’s too much work.

    And, yes, it does take 5-6 years for most students to complete a PhD.

  31. Nash I like twitter but it really comes down to who you know, who you follow and who cares enough to follow you and/or them.

    Go to Twitter.com sign up creating any name that strikes your fancy. On Twitter I am jessied44 Follow me and you get a lot of politics, entertainment, and charities.

  32. Jamie:
    re: cost shifting

    I agree with you…cost shifting is a disgusting trend.

    It is the #1 issue for most students.

  33. There is evidence that increased student activism is a global trend…

    From “Inside Higher Ed.”

    “The contemporary student protests on the educational front tend to be against cuts in public finding of higher education and increases in tuition fees, both of which are associated with neoliberal reforms in higher education. Austerity measures, following the global financial crisis, have accelerated the implementation of such reforms in countries where they previously did not exist. Although the differences between countries continue to be pronounced, a sense exists nevertheless that the national higher education systems are becoming more alike in the sense of being more market-oriented, even in countries with a strong social-welfare tradition.”

    http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2014/04/10/essay-importance-understanding-global-student-activism#sthash.KrIcKTvA.XPQhtN8n.dpbs

  34. Jamie:

    I have played around with Twitter.

    I just can’t figure out how you use it to forment revolution.

  35. Flatus:

    I believe that undergraduate students should have a full menu of choices in the liberal arts and should, regardless of major, be required to take a certain number of courses (that they can select) from several different areas: social sciences. literature, languages, history, lab sciences, mathematics, the arts, etc.

    It’s the only way to produce fully educated citizens.

    The founders of this nation believed that a well-educated population was the only way to sustain democracy.

    They did not want education to be reserved for the elites.

  36. Patd

    MSNBC keeps referring to Bundy as a “Welfare Cowboy”. Your mission should you choose to accept it -- parody of Rhinestone Cowboy” :)

  37. Nash

    On the revolution side it is how you get several thousand people in a large square somewhere. They then become targets for whatever they are protesting … after that it’s totally up for grabs but keep comments to 147 characters.

  38. corey: That statue doesn’t look like an orgy to me.

    Not that I’ve been to many orgies (or even one).

    If your fellow citizens are looking for porn, they should check out Vatican in Rome. (Nude statues everywhere!)

  39. There is a video on Youtube from this guy Rev. Rick Strawcutter. He shares his ignorant views of the statue. Heck, only 10 people go to downtown Adrian anyway.

  40. The well rounded human being who can reason from the general to the particular and vice versa requires a broad education. The Ancient “Liberal Arts” included:

    Grammar
    Rhetoric
    Logic
    Arithmetic
    Geometry
    Music
    Astronomy

    And the Modern interpretation some combination of

    Literature
    Languages
    Philosophy
    History
    Mathematics
    Psychology
    Science

  41. Jamie: Wikipedia has an excellent article on the evolution and alternative definitions of liberals arts.

    One recent innovation is that some universities (mostly in the USA) are now offering degrees in “liberal arts.”

    Students don’t have a specialized “major.” The degree is designed to maximize breadth of learning.

  42. Nash 2.5,

    I did a BA with a major in finance. My language was French which I started in grade school. Lots of econ, math, history, astronomy, oceanography, lit, philosophy, as well as many credit hours of military stuff including advanced push-ups.

  43. Flatus:
    re: pushups

    The Athenians believed in educating both mind and body.

    We used to have a “health and wellness” course on our campus that was required for all students, with a “lab” conducted in the gym where they learned many different ways to exercise and keep fit.

    The “lab” part of the course was eliminated years ago due to budget cuts. Now it’s just a lecture.

    That’s the kind of short-sighted stupid crap we have been seeing for years. Every year, the students lose something else, but tuition always goes up.

  44. I could cry for today’s kids when it comes to health and wellness. My high school not only had the requisite track, baseball, football, and basketball teams both male and female but swimming, modern dance, folk dancing, calisthenics etc “PE” of some form was required all four years plus basic health course as alternative to biology and physiology. We were actively moving a minimum of an hour a day.

  45. The Derby horses are taking their own sweet time deciding who is in and who is out this year. As of now, horses through “Uncle Sigh” on the following list are in. The others are hanging around the stable going, “how you feeling today?” Still some trail mixers have lost their mounts, so start picking:

    Horse Jockey Trailmixer

    California Chrome Victor Espinoza Jamie
    Vicar’s In Trouble Rosie Napravnik Nash 2.5 / Flatus
    Dance With Fate Nakatani
    Wicked Strong Rajiv Maragh Jace / Renee
    Danza Joe Bravo
    Samraat Ortiz
    Hoppertunity Joe Brunns
    Intense Holiday
    Wildcat Red
    We Miss Artie
    Ride On Curlin
    Chitu Pogo
    Tapiture
    Ring Weekend
    General A Rod
    Medal Count
    Candy Boy
    Harry’s Holiday
    Uncle Sigh X-R

    Bayern
    Commanding Curve
    Social Inclusion
    Vinceremos
    Pablo Del Monte
    Big Bazinga
    Strong Mandate

  46. Jamie, please put me down for wildcat red.

    as for your earlier suggestion, the muse hasn’t clocked in yet this morning. am surprised sturge or xr haven’t offered up their versions by now.

  47. What’s the #1 book at Amazon today?

    A book on why economic inequality is increasing, and how to fix it.

    From Amazon….

    “Captial in the Twenty-First Century,” by Thomas Piketty.

    What are the grand dynamics that drive the accumulation and distribution of capital? Questions about the long-term evolution of inequality, the concentration of wealth, and the prospects for economic growth lie at the heart of political economy. But satisfactory answers have been hard to find for lack of adequate data and clear guiding theories. In Capital in the Twenty-First Century, Thomas Piketty analyzes a unique collection of data from twenty countries, ranging as far back as the eighteenth century, to uncover key economic and social patterns. His findings will transform debate and set the agenda for the next generation of thought about wealth and inequality.

    Piketty shows that modern economic growth and the diffusion of knowledge have allowed us to avoid inequalities on the apocalyptic scale predicted by Karl Marx. But we have not modified the deep structures of capital and inequality as much as we thought in the optimistic decades following World War II. The main driver of inequality--the tendency of returns on capital to exceed the rate of economic growth--today threatens to generate extreme inequalities that stir discontent and undermine democratic values. But economic trends are not acts of God. Political action has curbed dangerous inequalities in the past, Piketty says, and may do so again

  48. meanwhile to get the juices flowing

    actually the real lyrics aren’t that far off with regard to ole cliven

    There’s been a load of compromisin’
    On the road to my horizon
    But I’m gonna be where the lights are shinin’ on me

    Like a rhinestone cowboy
    Riding out on a horse in a star-spangled rodeo
    Like a rhinestone cowboy
    Getting cards and letters from people I don’t even know
    And offers comin’ over the phone

  49. In this morning’s Journal, editorial board member Mary Kissel reviews Elizabeth Warren’s “A Fighting Chance.”

    Hardly a benevolent review, “A Tale of Two Elizabeths” is summed-up by the catch line:

    “The story of how a middle-class girl rose to the Senate--and came to see the market econmy that gave her the chance as ‘rigged.’”

  50. As a youngster fishing with my grand father, I always hated it when the fish swallowed the hook, because we usually just caught them and released them. When they swallowed the hook you had little choice but to kill them and pull or cut the hook out, guts and all.

    The right wing took the bait and swallowed the Cliven Bundy hook clear down deep. Now they can’t disgorge it.

    Like the fish of my childhood, their fate is clear.

    Oddly enough, I have no sympathy for them what so ever.

  51. More on Bundy from Paul Begala.

    “Let me tell Sean about the Racist: The Racist hates federal subsidies. Not the subsidies that provide grassland to Nevada ranchers at below-market values. Nor the subsidies that bring water to the desert by, say, building Hoover Dam. Nor the subsidies that benefit mining operations in the Silver State. No, the Racist hates subsidies that sap the human soul: like food stamps for moms with hungry children. Especially if those moms happen to be, well, differently pigmented from him.”

  52. Jamie,

    Please put me down for this beauty: CANDY BOY
    … intelligent, aware and alert.
    Ready… set… go!

  53. Have you ever noticed how great those horses appear to feel when they’re flying across an open field. Those lucky jockey’s seem to become one with their horse, and must know exactly what drives them … tapping into that exhilaration. Hopefully, it’s through love.

  54. Sometimes I hate computers -- after logging in and drafting a lengthy post regarding grad students (short version -- Nash is correct) the site spontaneously redirected me to WordPress login screen and my post was gone when I returned.

    I have relished Jon Stewart’s skewering of Hannity and his inconsistent, ideologically driven positions on who must and may not follow the law and his man crush on the Bundy idiot. And Colbert chimed in last night with a great echo of Stewart. But what else would we expect of Hannity? If Pope Francis were president, Sean would be calling him a socialist. But he’s Pope, and Hannity should be converting to a religion that elevates the rich over the poor at any moment.

  55. I’m no poet or lyricist, but here’s my feeble attempt:

    There won’t be no compromisin’
    On the road to my horizon
    But I’m gonna be where my cows are grazin’ for free
    Like a welfare cowboy
    Riding out on in the lights of Sean’s Fox News evening talk show
    Like a welfare cowboy
    Spewing hate and nonsense to people I don’t even know
    And Hannity comin’ over the phone

  56. pogo: drafting a lengthy post regarding grad students (short version — Nash is correct) the site spontaneously redirected me to WordPress login screen and my post was gone when I returned.

    Happens to me all the time. If I am providing more than my share of wit and wisdom in a single response I open up a word program. Then a cut and paste, it is fini and not going in to a bit bucket.

  57. Pat

    That’s Home on the Range not Cole’s Don’t Fence Me In but I love the lyrics

    Pogo

    Excellent construction attempt.

  58. pat, I did. Laughed my ass off. I guess Bundy’s take is that for “the Negro” family values means getting to birth babies and keep your kids with you as slaves until they are sold to another master. Yes, what a wonderful life slavery must have been -- except for all the bad things about it, like being a slave just f’rinstance.

  59. Patd, Chloe, and Craig -- Have your entrants.

    ALL NEW FOLKS & LURKERS

    Got your attention? Good. The Kentucky Derby is a trail tradition and you are all invited to join in. The only prize is bragging rights but we have fun getting there.

  60. The one good thing about the right wing rancher Bundy episode is it has added a new phrase to our political dialog…

    “welfare cowboy.”

  61. Yesterday… I didn’t know who the hell this Bundy fella was… had to google him. My god… what piece of white trash. The guy isn’t even a dog whistle… he’s a punch in the face racist. And the right wing media isn’t gonna be able to back track from supporting him no matter how hard they try now.

  62. I just found out that my Derby horse, Wicked Strong, was bred and raised in Ipswich Massachusetts. I live in a little New Hampshire town that was named after Ipswich. Another reason to be in love with him.

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