Carol Burris puzzled over a strange phenomenon. Why is the state spending so much money on Common Core-aligned curriculum?

In the past, New York state set standards, and local districts developed their own curriculum, usually at a cost of about $1,000 per grade. Now, teachers are expected to use state-purchased curricula, developed at a cost of millions.

Burris digs deeper, and, of course, discovers the Gates Foundation, helping to create a national curriculum.

Burris asks:

*Why do New York State Education Commissioner John King and [Board of Regents’ chair] Tisch refuse to slow down New York’s rushed Core implementation, despite outcry from the public?*

*If parents, teachers and taxpayers had the time to critically examine the curriculum, they would ask the hard questions that would lead to its unraveling. This is not just a math problem. There are English/Language Arts vendors producing $14 million worth of New York curriculum as well. Recently ELA modules were ridiculed at a local school board meeting in upstate New York.*

*There are big questions that the press needs to ask about Common Core Inc. and all of the vendors that are receiving public money. There is also an overarching question that should be asked: Is this an attempt to create a national curriculum by having federal tax dollars flow to New York State and then out again to an organization committed to Common Core curriculum development? And to all of the business leaders who so enthusiastically support the Common Core—do you want your future workers to count like Sally? Is this the best curriculum that more than $28 million can buy? I think not. It is time we take a look with eyes wide open.*

### Like this:

Like Loading...

You bette believe that Duncan, NGA, and Gates (among others) plan to have a national curriculum:

http://deutsch29.wordpress.com/2013/11/24/common-core-aligned-curriculum-and-other-ngaduncan-decided-issues/

better

It’s a cash cow deutsch29 for these megacorps. Makes me sick.

that is a nice, here in kenya we expect more demonstration especially when the new county governments embezzle funds

http://bonixxnina.wordpress.com

Welcome to the discussion. Just read your link and find it so interesting. Thanks for posting your comments.

Ellen

There seem to be about 697 school districts in New York, so if the curriculum development costs were $1,000 per grade per district, and if we include kindergarten we get $1,000 x 697 x 13 = $9,061,000 spent by public schools in the state of New York on curriculum development. Millions are spent either way.

Love it. Thanks for your research Carol.

Follow the money and read the Gates’ funded Common Core Inc.’s 990 (2011) at this link:

Click to access 26-0876000_990_201112.pdf

Common Core Inc. (non-profit 501C3) seems to be making money from EngageNY also known as “Eureka Math.”

Do parents have a choice? As a parent, I would say NO to Eureka Math via EngageNY (NY Common Core curriculum scripts).

Millions wasted in NY education contracts for a scripted curriculum that no one wanted. New York parents and taxpayers need to file open records requests for the contracts and purchase orders related to Common Core Inc.

How are the Regents Fellows connected to Common Core Inc.?

Barbara Byrd-Bennett and Juan Rangel are listed as trustees.

Isn’t Juan Rangel the owner/director of Chicago’s UNO charter schools?

Yes…and Byrd-Bennett is the Broad-trained CEO/Supt. of Chicago schools. She and Rahm were responsible for closing the 52 inner city schools and imbedding 50 charters. Could those charters be UNO????

How are the Regents Fellows connected to Common Core Inc?

http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/Education-reform-backed-by-the-wealthy-5006670.php

Thank you for your research. As a teacher I do not have a great deal of time to look in to things as much as I would like.

Consider how much money would be available to students and schools if these products were not taken out of the top of the education budget. Consider how much more money would be available if we were not paying Pearson to construct tests which the state (or the school districts? I am not sure who at this point…) must print and distrubute. Think of the teacher positions and programs that could be saved.

Perhaps some real investigative journalism could occur to inform parents and taxpayers how this really works and where their money is actually going.

Perhaps we need to stop buying Microsoft Products as well. As we have taught in Humanities class for years, a boycott can be a meaningful means of protest.

The tests ARE the curriculum.

So Right!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Comment of the Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And the tests are COMPLETELY INVALID!

President O Baka is in California today raising money for democratic candidates. He will be partying with Gates and friends.

Every time I follow a link to Engage New York, my heart weeps for every teacher who is forced to teach this nonsense, and for every child trying to learn. Engage NY takes simple skills and turns learning into a mass of confusion. Just reading the modules make me completely crazy and overwhelmed. I can’t imagine trying to implement any of this with real children.

If you can read the Artical in the Times Union Albany, NY titled “Education Reform Backed by The Wealthy” by John Odato 11-24-13. The NY State Education Dept. has 27 people call Fellows” who are paid by a fund called The Board of Regents Research Foiundation. Merryl Tish began this fund with a $1million contribution. Bill Gates followed with $3.3 million contribution. This only the beginning the people employed by them report only to Merryl Tish and follow her directions. It is in essence a ”Shadow Government”. This is the most underhanded, unethical conflict of interest I have ever seen. Merryl Tish and her other contributers have created a side goup not responsible to any government officals. Many people do not even know about this group. They are helping state ed. officals do their job? I hope to raise awearness about this. I think Merryl Tish should step down from her position as chairperson of New York State Board of Regents. To me this is an outrage, they are using their wealth to create an agendaof their own. PLEASE IF YOU A TEACHER PLEASE STAND UP AND SCREAM. Don’t let wealthy people control the school because they have money.We are not Puritans, God is not shinning on Bill and Melida Gates nor is he shinning on The

Tish Family.

When I taught a university extension class last Winter on Dumbing Down of Am. Ed using the 2010 Ravitch book as core, my students were all advanced degreed seniors. Smartest person in the room was a PhD engineer from Cal Tech who did a presentation on this CC math module for elementary school. NO ONE in the room could follow the abstract and convoluted concepts…and my students were educators, engineers, lawyers, and tech experts.

Good luck 2nd graders who are 7 years old.

Ellen Lubic

It would be helpful if you could point to the second grade math standards that are convoluted and abstract.

Here is the introduction to the second grade standards:

In Grade 2, instructional time should focus on four critical areas: (1) extending understanding of base-ten notation; (2) building fluency with addition and subtraction; (3) using standard units of measure; and (4) describing and analyzing shapes.

1. Students extend their understanding of the base-ten system. This includes ideas of counting in fives, tens, and multiples of hundreds, tens, and ones, as well as number relationships involving these units, including comparing. Students understand multi-digit numbers (up to 1000) written in base-ten notation, recognizing that the digits in each place represent amounts of thousands, hundreds, tens, or ones (e.g., 853 is 8 hundreds + 5 tens + 3 ones).

2. Students use their understanding of addition to develop fluency with addition and subtraction within 100. They solve problems within 1000 by applying their understanding of models for addition and subtraction, and they develop, discuss, and use efficient, accurate, and generalizable methods to compute sums and differences of whole numbers in base-ten notation, using their understanding of place value and the properties of operations. They select and accurately apply methods that are appropriate for the context and the numbers involved to mentally calculate sums and differences for numbers with only tens or only hundreds.

3. Students recognize the need for standard units of measure (centimeter and inch) and they use rulers and other measurement tools with the understanding that linear measure involves an iteration of units. They recognize that the smaller the unit, the more iterations they need to cover a given length.

4. Students describe and analyze shapes by examining their sides and angles. Students investigate, describe, and reason about decomposing and combining shapes to make other shapes. Through building, drawing, and analyzing two- and three-dimensional shapes, students develop a foundation for understanding area, volume, congruence, similarity, and symmetry in later grades.

Here is a link if it might be helpful:http://www.corestandards.org/Math/Content/2/introduction

I was being sarcastic. But this just came re kindergarten CC math.

You are very literal so decided to post the whole thing just as it came from Teach for US.

Teach For Us logo

My Daughter’s Kindergarten Common Core Math Workbook

1 new posts today

——————————————————————————–

The Common Core has hit home for me, literally. I received from my daughter’s school a kindergarten common core workbook, and, as you might imagine, I have ‘issues’ with it.

My daughter’s school, like most schools, is having a budget crisis. So when I think that these workbooks each retail for about $30, I question if this is the best use of scarce funds.

Now I will be the first to admit that I am no expert in early childhood learning. When my daughter was three months old I devised a plan for her to break the world’s record for youngest person to solve the Rubik’s cube. Using ‘incremental’ learning, I bought a Rubik’s cube and removed all the stickers except for two white stickers. The idea is that I would have her learn to get the two white stickers together. Then, as a reward, I’d add another sticker and keep doing that, adding a new sticker each time she mastered the new cube, until all 54 stickers were put on the cube before she turned four. I didn’t force her to do the cube, knowing that she might resent it. Instead I’d leave the sticker-less cube lying around in places where she might notice it and pick it up on her own. Needless to say, she never showed any interest in the mostly black cube and is now nearly six years old and has no interest in the cube whatsoever.

I also don’t know much about what kindergarten math was like before the common core. For all I know, what is in this workbook is not very different from what they have been doing before that. I’ll be interested in hearing from people who are experts in early childhood education and who can tell me if I’m being overly harsh on what I see in this book.

A good teacher, like the one my child now has, does know how to take even a crummy curriculum and adapt it to make it appropriate for the class. But if tens of thousands of dollars are spent on bad books and surely the interim assessments and analysis that go along with them, then that is just a big waste of money which I’d rather see a school use to offer more special events, programs, and field trips to make school a fun place for my child.

Each page of the book features in large letters the words ‘TEST PREP’ so any administrator who claims that they don’t encourage test prep for kindergarteners is lying. Also notice that these kindergarteners are getting early practice in bubbling. The directions for this are “Trace the number. How many counters woul you place in the five frame to show the number? Mark under your answer.”

The directions for this one are “Which numbers show the sets that are put together? Mark under your answer.” Clearly both 5+3 and 7+1 are correct, though I guess they want the students to write 7+1.

The directions are “Listen to the subtraction word problem about the animals. There are ____ _______. Some are taken from the set. Now there are ____. How many were taken from the set? Circle and mark an X to show how many are being taken from the set. Trace and rite to complete the subtraction sentence.” These aren’t even the correct instructions! It should say that there are ____ ____ and ____ are taken from the set, how many are left, I think. So this is, as the title of the lesson says, ‘Algebra’ — for kindergarteners. So for number one there are four sea horses and one is facing to the left and three are facing to the right. It is not clear which ones are staying and which ones are leaving, but according to the problem the three facing to the right are leaving so this represents four minus 3. But who says that moving to the right is leaving (or just facing to the right, really?)?

Here is another type of ‘algebra’ problem. “Mark under the number to show how many are being taken from the set.” This time the right facing turtles are circled with a big ‘X’ over them to represent they are being taken away.

“Tell a subtraction word problem about the beavers. Trace the numbers and the symbols. Write the number that shows how many beavers are left.” Well it seems to me that there are three beavers while just one, not two, have left the raft. There is one who is maybe starting to leave, but it is equally likely that he is actually climbing onto the raft. Maybe there are one and a half beavers on the raft?

“Listen to a subtraction word problem about the birds. There are some birds. Four birds are taken from the set. Draw more birds to show how many you started with. How many birds did you start with? Write the number to complete the subtraction sentence.” Here is another type of ‘algebra’ problem. Look at the wording of the oral prompt: “There are some birds.” There ‘are’, or there ‘were’? “how many you started with,” seems like a strange way to say that. The student didn’t start with the birds, so why the ‘you’? What a way to make a five or six year old hate math (and penguins for that matter).

“Which shapes could you join to make the rectangle above? Mark under your answer.” I’m a big fan of manipulatives in the classroom. At my home, my children (I also have a two year old son — his Rubik’s cube training has not begun yet. I’m not going to make the same mistake twice. He’ll start three months before his fourth birthday. Guinness here we come!) love playing with magnetic shapes that can be made into three dimensional figures. But it seems pretty feasible that the two triangles and the square might be able to be made into a rectangle, though the answer is the second one with the two right triangles. I don’t think a question like this should ever be a multiple choice question unless the students are provided with the actual shapes so they can play around with them to see which one works.

“Which shape does not roll? Mark under your answer.” So first you have the explanation of ‘roll’ with the soccer ball and the arrows demonstrating the rotation of the ball. There is no reason why a kindergartener who has not spent time trying to put together IKEA furniture by looking at diagrams like this would understand what roll means from this picture, though of course every child knows the concept of rolling. And then look at the answer choices. The cylinder doesn’t roll very well when it is upright like that so it isn’t clear if that is part of the answer though a cylinder will roll if it is on its side. Then the sphere of course does roll, but what about the cube? The answer is intended to be ‘no,’ I guess, but a cube most certainly does roll. In fact, what do you do with cube shaped dice? You ROLL them!

For the other three questions on this page, these seem more like physics problems. I can argue that you can stack spheres for question 2. Have they ever seen a can of tennis balls? Cones can also be stacked. Ever see a box of ice cream cones? For number three, I’d say that all things can slide, even the sphere. Put any onto an ice skating rink and push them and see.

I don’t know. These seem pretty useless to me. It’s not that they are so difficult, just that they are not accomplishing much. My sense is that they have done ‘backward planning’ to get the students ready for whatever common core material they are expected to do when they are in high school so they are trying to set up for those things now. But I’d much prefer my child to explore math at this young age in a way that is more like a game and less like a test prep manual. This might make her good at bubble tests but not someone who likes math or will chose to study it further as soon as it is no longer required. Fortunately I trust my child’s teacher to try to find some good in this material and to not waste time on the stuff that is pointless.

• Email to a friend • Article Search • View comments • Track comments •

I think the best way to judge the state standards is to look at the state standards. Here is the introduction to the kindergarten standards. Could you identify the “abstract and convoluted concepts”?

In Kindergarten, instructional time should focus on two critical areas: (1) representing and comparing whole numbers, initially with sets of objects; (2) describing shapes and space. More learning time in Kindergarten should be devoted to number than to other topics.

1. Students use numbers, including written numerals, to represent quantities and to solve quantitative problems, such as counting objects in a set; counting out a given number of objects; comparing sets or numerals; and modeling simple joining and separating situations with sets of objects, or eventually with equations such as 5 + 2 = 7 and 7 – 2 = 5. (Kindergarten students should see addition and subtraction equations, and student writing of equations in kindergarten is encouraged, but it is not required.) Students choose, combine, and apply effective strategies for answering quantitative questions, including quickly recognizing the cardinalities of small sets of objects, counting and producing sets of given sizes, counting the number of objects in combined sets, or counting the number of objects that remain in a set after some are taken away.

2. Students describe their physical world using geometric ideas (e.g., shape, orientation, spatial relations) and vocabulary. They identify, name, and describe basic two-dimensional shapes, such as squares, triangles, circles, rectangles, and hexagons, presented in a variety of ways (e.g., with different sizes and orientations), as well as three-dimensional shapes such as cubes, cones, cylinders, and spheres. They use basic shapes and spatial reasoning to model objects in their environment and to construct more complex shapes.

Here is the link for your convince: http://www.corestandards.org/Math/Content/K/introduction

TeachEco….If you go to the Teach for Us website, you can see the actual book and the problem sets. Each page is labeled Test Prep.

Please keep in mind that these are 5 – 6 year olds. You will see that the tests are set up as fill in the bubble, not iPads. But even at 5 many children do not have the small muscle control to fill in bubbles, muchless have the mental experience to answer alegabraic problems.

And as far as I hear from Early Childhood Ed teachers, this kind of testing is not productive in any way and leads these small children to have much stress. Others can weigh in with more info on this.

Ellen

As I said in another post, criticism of the CCSS should be based on the CCSS, not on one attempt to implement them in a workbook.

Woof Thomsen,

based on the overwhelming majority of his comments on this site, I’d say that teachingecconomist is not so much “very literal,” but “willfully obtuse.”

Thank you Michael for the insight. Yes, TeachEc and Harlan seem to be cut from the same purposefully obtuse scratchy cloth.

Probably best not to engage.

And today even Diane posted this same CC kindergarten material.

Ellen

Former state schools chief Bill Honig disciplined

http://archive.calbar.ca.gov/calbar/2cbj/98aug/page25-2.htm

Bill Honig is a Common Core Inc. trustee according to the IRS 990.

Thank you for continuing to build awareness of these issues. #stopthismadness. http://youtu.be/IVPeTZDYTco

Democratic Principles OR Authoritative Mandates

http://kennethfetterman.wordpress.com

I particularly like this Burris quote from the Strauss blog, which says a lot about why teachers can end up stuck with the latest brainiac’s idea on how to conceptualize math (as illustrated in the Burris article):

“What saved us in the past from wrong-headed reforms was that they were not mandated by state or federal government. They could therefore be adapted or abandoned at the local level. Now that standards and curriculum are connected with Race to the Top money, high-stakes tests and teacher evaluations by standardized test scores, it is exceedingly difficult to do the careful and critical review that every new program deserves.”

And on a completely different note – the return of merit pay – this time with a research study backing it (despite numerous others that discredit it).

http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2013/11/talent_transfer_initiative_a_new_education_experiment_finds_that_merit_pay.html

So the author concludes that while he concedes that money is usually not the highest consideration for a teacher, that this study shows it does effect it.

The problem with this stance (and why I think Diane needs to refute it) – is that it puts the camel’s nose under the tent in 2 ways. First, it says that measured teachers were the reason that students’ test scores saw gains – I dispute that the teachers selected for this were valid depending how they selected their “top 20 percent” which seems to be based on test scores (though the study should be looked at to confirm or deny it – that at least seems to be the inference).

Secondly, it gets merit pay “on the map” as one of “many” reforms that could help low income students – and almost (ALMOST) goes so far as to say that this should trump class size as being a lesser value. That should raise alarms – please someone that knows the research look at this please?

Here’s an example of the EngageNY scripted lessons that were purchased with millions in tax funds that King promotes. There’s ZERO evidence that the Common Core Inc. scripts and/or the Core Knowledge scripts will prepare students for successful lives. King and the Regents refuse to address significant problems with for-profit scripted Common Core curriculum, conflicts of interests, state department contracts and high-stakes corporate testing.

It’s a must read:

Are you smarter than a first-grader? Explain Mesopotamia

Some Common Core questions draw laughs, shock from Saranac Lake School Board

http://adirondackdailyenterprise.com/page/content.detail/id/540133/Common-Core–modules–draw-laughs–shock-from-Saranac-Lake-School-Board.html?nav=5008

In KY we do not have a prescribed curriculum for our CCSS work. The CCSS have actually provided an opportunity for teacher to design their own curriculum. I feel that this paradigm shift has empowered a lot of teachers in our state to refine their craft. It is disconcerting to hear of other states mandating a set curriculum. It is time that teachers are given the keys to the Cadillac (elevate our profession, provide incentives for master teachers, allow teachers to make policy decisions).

In KY, we have momentum towards these endeavors and it all started with Common Core adoption. Due to that fact, I am vehemently pro-Common Core. I sincerely hope that states looking to implement CCSS look to our model.

To steal from Daniel Pink: I feel that the Common Core provides the measurable purpose, my decision making and design thinking provide the autonomy and my refining of craft provides the mastery necessary to truly change the landscape of education.

I know that my students are receiving an education that I was never afforded. That observation is not political; it is not idealistic or naive; it is not unfounded. I can tell you from first hand experience in the classroom and from a myriad of discussion with teachers at every level throughout the state, that the CCSS has drastically improved the sophistication of students’ thinking.

Brad,

How did the CCSS testing go in Kentucky?

Diane,

Is the discussion we are having about assessment and measurement or the validity of the standards themselves? I see validity of assessment as a different issue.

The standards have truly “opened up” our profession as I detailed above. They have invited us to be masters of our instructional craft. Whereas complete intentionality was typically reserved for NBCT or highly experienced teachers pre-CCSS, KY now has more teachers self-reflecting and refining their carft in order to meet the cognitive demands of the standards.

For example: On first glance, each standard has explicit skills, content and concepts. Further inquiry reveals that each standard also possesses implicit skills, content and concepts. What I see as the true beauty in the standards is that in order for a student to master any of them, they must think critically. From my vantage point, the CCSS require teachers to intentionally teach critical thinking skills as they apply to the explicit and implicit skills, content and concepts.

This conversation of intentionality, although once reserved for administrators and (I am guessing here) 20% of the state’s teacher workforce, is now a constant conversation among 95% of the teachers I work with within my building, my district and throughout my state educator network.

I can only speak from my KY experiences. I am sure that CCSS implementation has been poorly implemented in some states and the issue of assessment validity is a topic that must be addressed, but to dismiss the standards themselves is a bit foolhardy.

Brad,

How did the Common Core testing work out in Kentucky?

I personally do not condemn the standards, although I mightily disapprove of the undemocratic manner in which they were written and then imposed on the states by the lure of RTTT millions. I think the standards can be improved by teachers in every state that adopts them. They are far from perfect. I doubt you will find many teachers of kindergarten or first grade who approve of them.

Diane

It is good to hear from Kentucky. I know a person involved in education reforms there and understood from her that things were improving. Kentucky also seems to have been one of the more competent states in implementing the Affordable Care Act. Good state government can get a lot done.

The more I learn about the decisions that have been made by Dr. Holliday over the past three years, the more respect I have for the complexities of implementing a culture/system that values growth of students, growth of teachers, & growth of admins…not an easy task.

Brad,

How did Common Core testing work out in KY? It was a purposely manipulated disaster here in NY.

I’m glad you’re finding value in the implementation of the CCSS in your Kentucky schools. We’re not.

Back to the topic: what did you think of Burris’ article?

I should say that I’m serious when I say it’s good that you’re finding value. My feeling is that the CCSS shouldn’t be mandatory. I like the concept of school choice.

I think school level curriculum choice is possible in public education if there is parental choice in schools.

That’s not surprising, te. Is that in the form of a “deal” that you feel would be fair to strike (“I’ll give you CCSS choice if you give me parental choice in schools”) or do you feel that one isn’t possible without the other?

BTW: what do you think of Ms Burris’ article?

I don’t see school level curriculum choice and school level household choice as any sort of bargaining trade off, rather I think the only way local parents will allow significant school choice in curriculum is if there is significant household choice in schools.

When local schools start to differentiate themselves from each other, the catchment zones of the schools start to really matter. Parents will ask why their street address is the reason their child is required to go to the school with a Waldorf style curriculum rather than the nearby Montessori style school. There will be no good answer, and all and only admission policies of traditional schools will have to breakdown. As long as students are assigned to schools based on street addresses, local districts have to make sure that the assignment is unimportant.

As for the article, I think the debate would be better if people would distinguish between what the common core standards actually say, how the common core standards are implemented in different states (no doubt some worse than others), how to assess the common core, and how to label the results of the assessment. These all seem like separate issues to me but are often so jumbled together that it makes a hash out of serious discussions.

As for the money, I think people are not aware of the scale of spending on public education. Folks talk about a billion dollars as if it is a large amount of money. We spend 640 billion dollars every year on public education, so even a couple of hundred million spent on new curriculum is lost in the rounding error.

640 billion? NCES estimates 591 billion. That is quite a significant rounding error on your part.

If we solely focus on a state by state basis, a clear picture begins to emerge. CA, my home state, went from spending approximately $13.00 per student on annual assessments to $22.50 per test (not including $5.00 additional costs for formative tools). These new tests are an increase of 70% to the testing budget. And CA is one of the cheaper states since it went with Smarter Balance. You should check out how much PARCC increases cost on average.

My figure is an NCES number as well. I will get a link for you when I am off the road.

No worries, your hands are tied. I will post the most recent fast facts for you (8/2013): http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=372

Because state and local areas spend around 85% of the education budget, they will definitely feel your “rounding error” in their local pockets. I can see why your ivory fingers might not feel it, though.

By the way, what do you mean by “choice”? Are you suggesting that “choice” involve curriculum changes, like art magnets or science magnets, that would be run by the public schools, or are you advocating for more of the same with our crop of for-profit/quasi-for-profit charters whose very livelihood is tied to how they preform on annual standardized tests so they cannot deviate from curriculum changes very much? While I certainly agree with the former, I find the latter rather bile rising and self-destructive for communities.

There’s a lot to your reply, TE. My daughter just got accepted to the college of her choice…so I’m a bit overwhelmed with joy. So I’ll just say:

1) The whole subject of school choice vs public school is much bigger than I want to enter into now. I respect (though don’t necessarily agree) with your opinion. I’ve listened to and heard others with similar feelings and have yet to be persuaded.

2) Not sure…but I’m pretty sure you’re not in NY State. As a long time NY City teacher, I have to say that this article is EXTREMELY (and I mean “extremely”) disturbing. Not so much about the money, either. It’s about the misuse of power. About the obvious conflict of interests. Totally over the top. I can’t tell you how much this bothers me. So I guess NY State is one of those schools that is “…worse than others…” in that respect. So why should it be forced on us?

3) Though I understand what you’re saying about the separate aspects of standards/curriculum/testing and how the CCSS relates to them, I have to say that it does all come together, in the end. As more and more information comes out, it’s becoming clear that these changes are being forced on us by private interests with extremely deep pockets. Whether it’s for financial or altruistic reasons…it’s still being forced on us. And it’s not necessary. That’s what bothers me more than anything else. It’s not necessary.