Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Latest Saxton Ad-Not Letting Bullshit Slow Them Down

We've been pretty consistent in going after Ron Saxton's TV advertising based on the creators' consistent misleading bullshit and generally pulling stuff out of their asses. We've even taken a swipe at one unscrupulous radio ad.

But before we even had a chance to get our feet wet with the latest Saxton ad disaster, Stand For Children beat us to it.

The new ad's script:

ANNOUNCER: Ted Kulongoski has increased education spending hundreds of millions of dollars.

[GRAPHIC: Increased Education Spending Hundreds of Millions OR Legislative Revenue Office]

ANNOUNCER: What has that done for Oregon schools?

[GRAPHIC: What’s That Done for Oregon Schools?]

ANNOUNCER: New independent report cards give Oregon schools these grades, C+, C-, F.

[GRAPHIC: 2006 Report Card; Participation C+; C- Preparation; Affordability F National Report Card on Higher Education 2006]

ANNOUNCER: Ron Saxton reports reforms that Kulongoski rejects

ANNOUNCER: Performance pay for teachers

[GRAPHIC: Performance Pay for Teachers]

ANNOUNCER: More school choice

[GRAPHIC: More School Choice]

ANNOUNCER: and reducing overhead to get more money into the classroom.

[GRAPHIC: More Money in the Classroom]

ANNOUCER: Reasons the Oregonian said “Saxton was a powerful choice for schools.”

GRAPHIC: Saxton was a powerful choice for schools, The Oregonian 9/28/06]

Stand For Children's press information shows why you need waders to get through this ad.

Starting with the first question:
Ted Kulongoski has increased education spending hundreds of millions of dollars. What's that done for Oregon schools?

Maybe Saxton should get out more. Or at least drag his sorry ass out to some rural school districts in the state he says he wants to govern:

Rural school districts in Oregon have the widest funding gap in the nation, and students in rural districts that receive the most tax money outperform those in rural districts that receive less, a new national study shows." [cited in the Oregonian, 4/18/06]

Or maybe just check things out in Multnomah County:

A report on Multnomah County's temporary income tax "noted that the three-year tax coincides with better student performance on state tests in reading and math.... The report also says that, since the tax started, there's been an acceleration in closing the achievement gap between white and minority and poor students, although the gap is far from closed." [cited in the Oregonian, 4/11/06]

Saxton's ad also says that New independent report cards give Oregon schools these grades, C+, C-, F.

The report card the ad cites is referring to only higher education in Oregon, not K-12. And even with that, they cherry pick the grades. They "forgot" to include the A in Benefits (meaning the benefits that the state gets from having an educated populace). And a B- in Completion (the proportion of students earning degrees/certificates in a timely manner).

The one area where Saxton's source does grade K-12 public schools: Preparation

*Eighth graders in Oregon perform well on national assessments in math and reading, and low-income 8th graders perform very well on the national assessment in math.

*About two-thirds of secondary students are taught by teachers with an undergraduate or graduate major in the subject they are teaching.

*Over the past 12 years, the percentage of non-white young adults (ages 18-24) who earn a high school credential has increased.

Saxton then quotes an Oregonian editorial, which has the paper noting he quoted them out of context:

The editorial, which was about Saxton's decision to move to an apartment so his son could get into Lincoln High School, was referring to Saxton's previous experience on the Portland School Board. The editorial goes on to say that Saxton ought to acknowledge the Oregon school spending has fallen below the national average.

Even campaign manager Felix Schein can't entirely defend this:

Saxton's campaign manager Felix Schein said the grades relate to public schools because they measure preparation for college and participation, both of which are affected by K-12 schools.

Uh Felix...did you read that part in YOUR OWN SOURCE CITATION that offers a glowing report of Oregon's public schools in preparation for college? Jeezus man, do you think we're stupid?

Once again, Saxton's entire ad is a messy, stinky, pile of shameless bullshit.