Archive for June, 2011

by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 30th, 2011 2:00pm CST | 3 Comments

From Washington Post comes this counterpoint to the Joel Klein column from yesterday: By Valerie Strauss This is the latest in a back-and-forth between Joel Klein, former New York City Schools chancellor, and Aaron Pallas, a Teachers College professor and statistician. The debate started with this Klein op-ed published in The Washington Post two weeks […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 30th, 2011 12:28am CST | 22 Comments

Tom Lee Park is the worst riverfront park in the country. That’s the comment made to Memphis City Council last year by Riverfront Development Corporation President Benny Lendermon, and surely, this is an RDC statement we can all agree to.  Rarely has such prime waterfront public realm real estate been put to such abysmal use […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 29th, 2011 2:26pm CST | 4 Comments

By Joel Klein Three years ago, in a New York Times article detailing her bid to become head of the American Federation of Teachers union, Randi Weingarten boasted that despite my calls for “radical reform” to New York City’s school system, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and I had achieved only “incremental” change. It seemed like a […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 29th, 2011 2:09pm CST | Comments Off on U.S. Reforms Out of Sync With High-Performing Nations, Report Finds

From Education Week: The United States’ education system is neither coherent nor likely to see great improvements based on its current attempts at reform, a report released this week by the National Center on Education and the Economy concludes. The NCEE report is the latest salvo in a flurry of national interest in what can […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 29th, 2011 12:22am CST | 2 Comments

    If Memphis was an actor, it would be looking to be cast against type. We’re like the actor who has only played light comedy roles that takes on a casting call as a serial killer just to shake up his image and how the public sees him. Memphis needs to do the same […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 28th, 2011 1:30pm CST | Comments Off on Our Fantasy Nation?

By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF of New York Times With Tea Party conservatives and many Republicans balking at raising the debt ceiling, let me offer them an example of a nation that lives up to their ideals. It has among the lowest tax burdens of any major country: fewer than 2 percent of the people pay […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 28th, 2011 12:02am CST | Comments Off on Bill Day’s I Love New York

Thanks to Bill Day, our favorite cartoonist, for sharing his take on last week’s vote by the New York Legislature approving marriage between two committed people, regardless of sexuality.  Mr. Day is an award-winning cartoonist and formerly offered his visual observations from The Commercial Appeal, which ended more than a century’s commitment to a cartoonist […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 27th, 2011 1:59pm CST | Comments Off on Why the Democratic Party Has Abandoned the Middle Class in Favor of the Rich

The following article first appeared in Mother Jones. In 2008, a liberal Democrat was elected president. Landslide votes gave Democrats huge congressional majorities. Eight years of war and scandal and George W. Bush had stigmatized the Republican Party almost beyond redemption. A global financial crisis had discredited the disciples of free-market fundamentalism, and Americans were […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 24th, 2011 2:35pm CST | 4 Comments

The legality of texting while lawmaking has been cause for debate, but Texas may be the first state to ban the practice altogether. From Governing Magazine: Scores of states and cities have recently enacted bans on texting while driving. But a proposed bill in Texas could make it the first state to prohibit a different […]

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by (RSS) Memphis City Schools | June 24th, 2011 12:49am CST | 3 Comments

If urban school districts like ours had a dollar every time somebody said, “Children are our future,” they’d never have a funding problem. Unfortunately for these districts, Americans are long on platitudes and short on support. That said, we begin with the obvious: children are our future. Or more precisely, well-educated African-American students will in fact […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 23rd, 2011 2:00pm CST | Comments Off on Opinions Drive What You See in Government

By John O’Leary in governing.com: When writing about how to enhance the performance of public-sector organizations, I am frequently accused of two things. I am accused of being an apologist for big government, because I often note the important functions of the public sector, and I am accused of being anti-government, because I often point […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 23rd, 2011 12:09am CST | 13 Comments

  The “politics of destruction” practiced by elected officials seems tame when compared to public employees themselves. It’s hard to reach any other conclusion after watching AFSCME’s over-the-top slash and burn campaign relentlessly attacking Memphis City Councilman Kemp Conrad and the internal power struggle inside Memphis Police Department as the old guard tries to wound […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 22nd, 2011 2:05pm CST | Comments Off on Finding the Creative City

From the Future of Business blog: Vancouver often tops the ‘liveability’ index but is it really an archetype for future working life? Next month (June), “Monocle” magazine, the glossy chronicler of culture and design, will publish its latest annual “liveability index”. Ranking the world’s cities in this way has become a rather popular activity in […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | June 22nd, 2011 12:07am CST | 14 Comments

  Two recent reports make the compelling point: the problems facing us are regional in nature rather than the problems of Memphis alone. One was in a report by Brookings Institution that said that the Memphis MSA has the highest crime rate in the U.S.  The other report – by U.S. Conference of Mayors – […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 21st, 2011 2:11pm CST | Comments Off on What Booker T. Washington Teaches Us

Perceptions from The Urban Child Institute  Graduating to a Better Memphis Graduation is always an exciting time, and it was made even more special this year with President Obama’s commencement speech at Booker T. Washington High School as the national spotlight shone on Memphis. There are many lessons to be learned from the turnaround in graduation […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 20th, 2011 1:27pm CST | Comments Off on What We Can Learn from Portland

Written by Jim Walker for Indianapolis Star: After two recent visits to Portland for conferences — one as part of the Indianapolis CEOs for Cities cluster — I flew home feeling great about living and working in Indianapolis. Many of the positive aspects of Portland — from its legal limits on sprawl, to its fully […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 20th, 2011 12:07am CST | 12 Comments

  There are times when you just need to give people what they say they want. In Shelby County Commission Terry Roland’s case, it is a society where government doesn’t address social issues.  These just happen to be the programs that no town outside Memphis needs more than the commissioner’s hometown of Millington. If Frayser […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | June 17th, 2011 2:00pm CST | 2 Comments

From the Infrastructurist, a guest Peter Kageyama, author of ‘For the Love of Cities.’ In January of this year, Newsweek published its list of “America’s Dying Cities.” The story declared that these were cities “with bleak futures ahead.” Not surprisingly, the list contained many cities that have struggled in past decade, losing both population and […]

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