Inside the Mammoth Backlash to Common Core

Common Core became a symbol for change itself, a magnet for every national anxiety (or conspiracy theory) involving the education system. Stories about the depravities of public education had been popping up in conservative media for years, but now critics had something tangible at which to direct their outrage.

Mother Jones

Life with Bob

As I stood looking into that crafty face pocked by shrapnel wounds, lined by many wars, some of which Bob has been to, I began to recognize the horrible truth. SOF is not phony exactly—the staff members really do the things they say they do—but neither is any of it exactly real. The magazine is a playground for half-assed adventurers, and Brown was having fun, that was all. I had come to work in Colonel Kangaroo’s Paramilitary Theme Park: Step right up, hit the Kewpie doll with a throwing knife and win an Oriental garrote for taking out those troublesome sentries. Cotton candy at the next booth—in camouflage colors, of course—and…. That was the key to understanding SOF—realizing that Bob is not in the business of putting out a magazine. He is in the business of being Bob. He likes being the international mercenary publisher, likes playing Terry and the Pirates, and the magazine is merely a justification. Trying to understand SOF as journalism merely leads to confusion.

Fred On Everything