T-Paw’s Tumble

July 7, 2011

I really had higher aspirations for this guy.

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I feel that Tim Pawlenty has simply picked the wrong year, physically. The era of the Republican Party being dominated by middle-aged to elderly Caucasian gentlemen is coming to a screeching halt. In place of this is more and more women and ethnic minorities to freshen the scene up a bit. It is quite the transformation our party is undergoing, making the stereotypical image of the GOP being solely for “rich white people” more and more obsolete.

That being said, I felt that going into the affair Tim Pawlenty was the guy to beat…Mitt Romney. I just knew that Mike Huckabee was going to run, and between he and T-Paw, Mitt would be left in the dust. Boy was I wrong. Not only did Huckabee not run, but by simply being there and “looking Presidential”, Mitt Romney has scaled the polls and become a clear frontrunner. Still, what does Tim Pawlenty not have? He looks charming and stately, speaks with a passive-aggressive intellectual tone and had a fair resume.

Today paints a stark contrast for his strong opening. Minnesota is in a fiscal bind. Pawlenty managed to write off the crisis, insisting that the numbers given were somehow incomplete and assuring the media that when the fiscal year rounded off, the state would be billions of dollars in surplus. This did not happen. He has also come under fire for cutting public education in his time as Governor. Let’s not forget his uncharacteristically aggressive shots at Mitt Romney. In the first debate he asserted that Mitt Romney’s economic plans simply weren’t the ones we needed. He then appeared on FOX News Sunday and reiterated the phrase “Obamneycare”, saying that the Health Care bill passed by the democrats was little more than a reincarnation of the Health Care bill passed in Massachusetts under Governor Romney. The stage was set for a Wild West gunfight in the Second Debate, when Pawlenty stuttered and sputtered and stood down when directly asked about his statements with Governor Romney present.

The incident can be dismissed on accordance of the impromptu (and rude) nature of the questioning, courtesy of CNN and John King. I still feel that if brought up in more polite timing than an interrupting of opening statements, T-Paw could’ve handled himself better and we might have enjoyed a little exchange. Fact is, he didn’t; what he has done since then is another issues of his. He has used the “Obamneycare” line several times since then, supposedly to appear bold again; but it is not working. Tim Pawlenty now seems like the nagging little kid in school that does not have the guts to stand up to the class President but badmouths him behind his back.

Thing is, I like Tim Pawlenty, though significantly less than I once did. His shortcomings are stacking up on him, and the polls show this. This isn’t to say that he is about to take his ball and go home; hiring Mike Huckabee’s daughter brings him a step closer to reconnecting with the grassroots (and getting an endorsement from The Incredible Huck). T-Paw needs to hurry, though; his numbers slip more and more with each release, and he may soon join former Speaker Gingrich in obscurity.


The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

The Record (Bergen County, NJ) 10-03-2010 COLLEGE ESSAYS ARE HIS PASSION, BUSINESS Section: BUSINESS Type: News

“Write about something you are passionate about” is classic advice for the college application essay. Daniel Stern took something he is passionate about — simplifying the college-essay process — and turned it into a Web business. website college essay topics

Stern, who grew up in Upper Saddle River and graduated from Northern Highlands Regional High School, is founder and president of CollegeEssayOrganizer.com, also known as CEO. Users pay fees ranging from $5 to $49, click on the schools they are applying to, and instantly get a list of all of the essays they need to write for those schools, and guidance on how the same essay could be used for multiple schools. The company is based in Manhattan, where Stern, 36, also heads a tutoring firm called Metro Academic Prep. He joined with another tutoring company, A-List Services, and its owner Scott Farber, to create the CEO website. The partners invested their own money in the start-up and have yet to take any profits out of it, but have thousands of paid users and are signing up new users at a rate of 250 and more a day as those college deadlines approach. (Interview edited and condensed for space.) Q. How did you get started in tutoring?

As John Lennon said, life is what happens when you’re making other plans. All I knew was that I didn’t want a job that required me to wear a tie. If stockbrokers got to dress casually, I’d be down on Wall Street now. I always loved words, I always loved writing. I started writing for U.S. News & World Report, then freelancing, but I always supported the writing with tutoring, mostly college-essay tutoring.

Q. How was CEO born?

When I worked with families, inevitably parents and students would say the most useful thing you did was create that road map for the college-essay process. All of the educational consultants in the city that I am colleagues with would all complain in August and September, ‘Oh, God, we’ve got to look up all these essay requirements. Wouldn’t it be great if someone would automate it?’ So I figured I would do it.

Q. How important is the essay?

It’s incredibly important. There are surveys where they ask colleges every year what are the most important factors you look for, and the college essays keep going higher up on the list. Many of the top applicants have the same raw numbers — top SAT scores, SAT II scores, GPAs. They need something to distinguish themselves and the essays are the best way to do that. It’s an opportunity to say, ‘This is who I am.’

Q. Is there one college that’s toughest in terms of number of essays?

NYU. NYU is a monster. You have to write the two required essays, and then there are three required essays on the NYU supplement, and then there are 27 program or department specific questions. So just for NYU you might be writing seven or eight essays. Probably the greatest misconception in all of this is parents and students thinking they only have to write the two essays required by the Common Application. They overlook the supplemental essays and overlook the fact that the Common App does not include many of those program-specific questions, or the scholarship essays. We’re experts at this and it takes us hours to find these questions. in our site college essay topics

Q. Do you remember what you wrote your college essay about?

Absolutely. It was about how when I was a junior in high school, my brother was an eighth-grader and played on a youth basketball team. My brother’s team was undefeated for four years and my father coached that team. Basketball is very big in our family. When I was a junior, three friends and I decided to coach a team in my brother’s league. We both made it to the championships. So it was my kids against my brother’s team, coached by my father. Needless to say my mom was pretty miserable the night of the championships. They ended up beating us — my brother still rubs that in my face. I wrote a really fun essay about family and sports and my theme was it’s not even how you play the game, but how you value yourself when the game is over.

Q. What essay category did that fall under? Turning point? Influential person?

It could fall under so many categories. A lot of essay questions are open-ended — tell us something about yourself. It could be personal values, or a defining moment.

Q. So you don’t remember the question but you remember what you wrote? Is that the key — the answers are more important than the questions?

The question is always asking about you. For example, if the college asks, ‘Why are you applying to our college?’ most students will regurgitate the school’s brochure and say how great the college is. What they should be saying is these are my intellectual and personal passions and this is how your college will help me cultivate those passions. I think of the college essay as a love letter to the college. You want to say, ‘This is how I feel, this is what I’m all about’ and let the person decide if they feel the same way toward you.

Q. Did you get into your top choice college?

My top choice was George Washington, and I got in.

Exec Access appears every Sunday.


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