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Fantasy Press Conference (Shameful Redux)

microphones(In light of the impending stimulus package making the rounds on Capitol Hill, the following is a riff on remarks made by President Barack Obama following a meeting with his education economic team. The original can be read in its entirety on the official White House blog.)

One point I want to make is that all of us are going to have responsibilities to get this economy education moving again. And when I saw an article today indicating that Wall Street bankers Congress had given themselves the education system $20 billion $100 billion worth of bonuses in new spendingthe same amount of bonuses as they gave themselves in 2004 effectively doubling federal funding of education — at a time when most of these institutions were are teetering on collapse and they are asking for taxpayers to help sustain them, and when taxpayers find themselves in the difficult position that if they don’t provide help that where they don’t have any other choices for educating their children, the entire system could come down on top of our heads if the next generation – indeed, this generation – can’t compete in a global economy — that is the height of irresponsibility. It is shameful.

And part of what we’re going to need is for folks on Wall Street in the education BLOB who are asking for help to show some restraint accountability and show some discipline transparency and show some sense of responsibility. The American people understand that we’ve got a big hole that we’ve got to dig ourselves out of — but they don’t like the idea that people are digging a bigger hole even as they’re being asked to fill it up.

And so we’re going to be having conversations as this process moves forward directly with these folks on Wall Street the BLOB to underscore that they have to start acting in a more responsible accountable and transparent fashion if we are to together get this economy rolling again. There will be time for them to make profits an opportunity for those with rigorous programs to put them in play in the classroom, as is already seen in charter schools across the country, and there will be time for them to get bonuses quality teachers to excel and be compensated on their merits rather than their seniority — now is not that time. And that’s a message that I intend to send directly to them, I expect Secretary Geithner Duncan to send to them — and Secretary Geithner Duncan already had to pull back one institution that had gone forward with a multimillion dollar jet plane purchase tenure protection contract at the same time as they’re receiving TARP ARRA money. We shouldn’t have to do that because they should know better. And we will continue to send that message loud and clear.

Having said that, I am confident that with the recovery package moving through the House and through the Senate, with the excellent work that’s already been done by Secretary Geithner in consultation with Larry Summers and Paul Volcker and other individuals education reformers in the trenches, that we are going to be able to set up a regulatory framework that allows accountability, transparency and choice to rights the ship and that gets us moving again. And I know the American people are eager to get moving again — they want to work be able to choose the best education for their children, be it in a conventional, charter or private school. They are serious about their responsibilities; I am, too, in this White House and I hope that the folks on Wall Street in the BLOB are going to be thinking in the same way.

(brought to you as a public service by M.O.M.S.Mothers Opposed to Misappropriated Stimulus)