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Feb 27, 201302:48 PMBlaska's Bring It!

with David Blaska

Yes, the Manskis absolutely did target Ananda Mirilli

Yes, the Manskis absolutely did target Ananda Mirilli

(page 1 of 2)

Ms. Mirilli reached out to this blog today to confirm that Sarah Manski was, indeed, recruited to run against her – and her, specifically. The Madison School Board candidate, defeated in last week’s three-way primary, said the Manskis spread a rumor that she was recruited by the Great Right Conspiracy to run as a stalking horse for school vouchers. News to me!

Forty-eight hours after taking out the troublesome minority candidate – her job accomplished – Sarah Manski withdrew from the race, assured that the school board would appoint “somebody good” if it came to that. (Matt DeFour’s reportage here.)

The Manski campaign was fueled by plenty of big-name Democrats, including the Democrat(ic) leaders in the Wisconsin State Assembly and Senate, Peter Barca and Chris Larson, even though they’re from Kenosha and Milwaukee, respectively. (I detailed that here.) It is also clear that the Manski candidacy and the Madison School Board election itself was, to these Democrats and unionistas, a partisan battle against Gov. Scott Walker, and forget about addressing Madison’s yawning minority achievement gap.

“There have been many conversations about conspiracy. Unfortunately, I didn’t see many folks trying to dismantle this one,” Mirilli told me. The Latina immigrant-American passed along to Blaska’s Bring It! the following missive from Sarah Manski’s husband, Ben. It was addressed to Latinos United for Change and Advancement. It is clear that “she” is a reference to Ananda Mirilli. (Underlines are my emphasis, bold-faced are those of the original.)

Ben Manski and John Nichols

On Dec 30, 2012, at 20:13, "Ben Manski" <> wrote:

Good evening LUChA ~

You may have already heard the exciting news that Sarah Manski, my wife, is a candidate for the Madison Metropolitan School Board’s District 5 seat. I’m writing to fill you in more about what is at stake in this election.

Many of you have met or worked with Sarah Manski. Yet even if you have known her for many years, you may not know that her advocacy is rooted in her own struggles as a self-supporting high school student living on her own nearly 20 years ago. Sarah’s teaching career and her advocacy for public education has been unflagging ever since.

This will be an important election. For one thing, nearly 300,000 people live in District 5, since this election is at-large. For another, Sarah is determined to protect Madison’s schools from the corporate education lobbyists.

One of Sarah’s opponents in this 3-way race is a supporter of using public tax dollars to fund private schools. She was recruited by the former head of a Bradley Foundation-funded group that promotes the corporate takeover of public education.

In turn, Sarah was recruited to offer an alternative to this other candidate. After weeks of consideration, Sarah filed her declaration of candidacy on December 19th. She is circulating petitions to get on the ballot right now.

A third candidate declared his candidacy a few days ago, on December 27th. He [T.J. Mertz] is a longtime blogger and activist on education policy.

I am proud of Sarah for taking on this challenge. I know why other teachers, education activists, and students urged her to run. They know that Scott Walker has plans for Wisconsin’s schools. Walker wants the power to get rid of local elected school boards and to appoint his cronies to run our schools.

Sarah Manski not only can win this important race, she also is the person best prepared to take on the political and managerial challenges facing Madison’s schools in the future. ... [blah, blah, blah]

On Wisconsin,
Ben Manski

Ananda Mirilli

Ananda Mirilli commented to Blaska’s Blog: “They made assumptions based on a conversation ... at a Community United meeting and my statement regarding to institutional racism,” in which she said:

It is about race. There’s racism in every school in Madison, and a lot of the achievement gap is about racism. It’s ridiculous to see how long it’s been going on. The question is: what are we going to do about it? How do we hold elected officials, and ourselves, accountable?

Old to new | New to old
Feb 27, 2013 03:14 pm
 Posted by  David Blaska

Marc Eisen speaks truth to power:

Progressives ... want to restore the old model that standardized education, tightly controlled alternatives, and protected teachers with an industrial-style union contract -- and sadly also did a wretched job of educating black children. African American leaders like Caire are still expected to fall in line, despite the old system's manifest failure.

Because he hasn't, Caire is shunned. The latest instance is the upcoming ED Talks Wisconsin, a progress-minded education-reform conference sponsored by the UW School of Education, the Center on Wisconsin Strategy, the mayor's office and other groups. Discussion of "a community-wide K-12 agenda" to address the achievement gap is a featured event. A fine panel has been assembled, including Mayor Paul Soglin, but Caire is conspicuously absent.

Feb 27, 2013 05:25 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

Well, we see the hypocrisy and racism of the left in full flight in this situation, don't we. Just like with Madison Prep. I have to say, however, that Sarah Manski's actions in this situation are appalling even by Madison standards. She's beneath contempt, as is John Nichols. His status as a credible journalist in Madison, and Manski's victory, show just how idiotic most Madison residents really are.

Feb 28, 2013 07:53 am
 Posted by  Anonymous

Blaska, you need to follow-up on Marj Passman. Dollars to donuts she is knee deep in it, too.

Feb 28, 2013 08:09 am
 Posted by  ssquared

There is one postive aspect to this underhanded left wing act.

Madison and Dane County will soon be rid of both of the Manski's.

May they never return (along with Austin King).

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About This Blog

Raised on a farm near Sun Prairie, David Blaska is a recovering liberal who spent 18 years in daily newspapers, including 12 at The Capital Times in Madison as a reporter and editor. He served Gov. Tommy Thompson as acting press secretary in 1998 and is a veteran and survivor of 19 years in state government. He served 12 years on the Dane County Board of Supervisors. From December 2007 to November 2011 he wrote the consistently popular "Blaska's Blog" for Isthmus online's "The Daily Page" until, he says, the intolerant liberals ran him off. He blogs from Madison.

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