Dana Goldstein

Dana Goldstein, a former associate editor and writer at the Prospect, comes from a family of public school educators. She received the Spencer Fellowship in Education Journalism, a Schwarz Fellowship at the New America Foundation, and a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellowship at the Nation Institute. Her journalism is regularly featured in SlateThe AtlanticThe NationThe Daily Beast, and other publications, and she is a staff writer at the Marshall Project. 

Recent Articles

EDUCATION REFORM AND SCHOOL FUNDING.

Last week President Obama and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan officially rolled out the Race to the Top competitive grant program, which will reward $4.3 billion to states that encourage education reform in four areas: implementing standards and assessments, improving teacher quality, building data systems, and putting highly qualified teachers in front of the neediest kids. But edu-blogger Alexander Russo made a very good point this morning, via twitter : In its focus on teaching -- the DOE actually bans states from applying for Race to the Top if they have laws preventing student testing data from influencing teacher assessments -- the program neglects to tip the scale in favor of ending another, more basic form of educational inequity: unequal funding. The initial Race to the Top application weighs whether states are maintaining overall education funding in the midst of the recession, but it does not prioritize equitable funding across school district lines . In the vast...

MEDICAL INNOVATION AND HEALTH REFORM.

Ben Domenech is a conservative and founder of RedState. He opposes health reform. And yet even he finds ridiculous Megan McArdle 's argument that Big Pharma is the only entity capable of producing medical innovation. He writes: Working at the Department of Health and Human Services provided me the opportunity to learn a good deal about the workings of the NIH, and I happen to have multiple friends who still work there — and their shocked reaction to McArdle’s description was stronger than mine, to say the least. “McArdle clearly doesn’t understand what she’s writing about,” one former NIH colleague said today. “Where does she think Nobel prize winners in biomedical research originate, academic researchers or in Pharma? Our academic researchers run clinical trials and develop drugs. I’m not trying to talk down Pharma, which I’m a big fan of, but I don’t think anyone in the field could read what she wrote without laughing...

SHOCKING STAT OF THE DAY.

According to a new poll, only 42 percent of self-identified Republicans believe Barack Obama is an American citizen; 30 percent are "not sure," and 28 percent believe he's not a citizen. In the general population, 77 percent of people know their president -- as required by law -- is a citizen. Via: Taegan Goddard . Update: Steve Benen has this useful chart breaking these birther beliefs down by region. -- Dana Goldstein

"LIFESTYLE" AND HEALTH REFORM.

Maybe we don't need to do anything at all about our health care system. After all, it's junk food and divorce that are making people unhealthy. And those are things people "choose." Megan McArdle : These aren't just a way to save on health care; they're a way to extend and expand the cultural hegemony of wealthy white elites. No, seriously. Living a fit, active life is correlated with being healthier. But then, as an economist recently pointed out to me, so is being religious, being married, and living in a small town; how come we don't have any programs to promote these "healthy lifestyles"? No. Seriously: Health reform is not about using the muscle of government to control "lifestyle." If this were Obama 's modus operandi , he wouldn't have appointed a secretary of agriculture from Iowa, Tom Vilsack , who reflexively defends Big Corn, aka The Industry That Fattens Us. Rather, health reform is -- or should be -- about the simple unjustness of a system in which health care costs are a...

THE ABORTION AD WARS.

None of the health-reform bills before Congress mandate abortion coverage in a potential public plan. Rather, they kick that ball down the field, allowing a council of experts -- after reform passes -- to advise the Health and Human Services secretary on what procedures should and shouldn't be covered. Yet continuing its campaign to use the abortion issue to kill health reform, the Family Research Council will be airing this TV ad in five states with swing senators: Pennsylvania ( Arlen Specter and Bob Casey ), Arkansas ( Blanche Lincoln ), Alaska ( Mark Begich ), Louisiana ( Mary Landrieu ), and Nebraska ( Ben Nelson ). What this ad doesn't tell you is that behind the scenes , religious-right groups are lobbying Congress to ban all abortion coverage within the health-insurance exchanges, even abortions covered by private insurers. Another tactic of abortion opponents is to use health reform as a vehicle for cutting off federal funding to Planned Parenthood, which currently uses tax...

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