Archive for the ‘Education’ Category
If someone would’ve told you that the New York chapter of the NAACP and a hardline progressive mayor were siding with the teachers unions in preventing minority students from getting a good education, you’d think it was something from the Onion. Sadly, it isn’t:
On March 17, 19 parents who send their children to Success Academy, a Harlem charter school, filed suit in federal court to stop New York Mayor Bill de Blasio from denying them previously arranged space in a public school building. Without space, their children and 173 others will not be able to continue at Success Academy this fall.
School bullying is a problem nationwide, but in New York the bullies are de Blasio and his pals — state NAACP President Hazel Dukes and teachers unions. Their targets are middle-school kids, 97 percent of them minorities, and 80 percent eligible for lunch assistance.
This shameful behavior is brought to you by the Bigot Wing of the Democratic Party. Don’t confuse these bigots with well-intentioned liberals like Juan Williams. They’re galaxies apart when it comes to education reform.
Juan Williams is fighting for education reforms that give every student the opportunity to live the American Dream. Part of his fight involves limiting teachers unions’ influence on educational opportunities, especially for minorities.
Consider what another Success Academy called Bronx 2 is doing to educate minority students. In that charter school, 97 percent of students passed state exams in mathematics, and 77 percent passed English. In math, the school ranks third in the state, besting schools in well-heeled suburbs. Bronx 2 shares space with a district public school, where kids under the thumb of the union and city bureaucrats, are failing. Only 3 percent passed the state English test. Same building, but a world of difference. Which school is giving kids their civil rights? Not the one Dukes and de Blasio are defending.
I’d love hearing Mayor de Blasio’s explanation on why he’s insisting that minority students’ only educational option is for failing schools. Smart policymakers would notice Bronx 2′s successes and do everything possible to expand those opportunities for minority students. Shouldn’t the NAACP be insisting that minority students be given the opportunity to excel in charter schools.
Instead, they’re being held back. The NAACP and Mayor de Blasio should be ashamed of themselves. Additionally, they should be required to meet face-to-face with these parents and students to explain why they’re being this hard-hearted.
Politically speaking, this is a fantastic opportunity for conservative school choice activists to explain why they’re for expanding choice options. From a human standpoint, it’s the perfect opportunity to explain why expanding educational options is a moral imperative.
Get ready for the bullies. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder sued to stop school choice in New Orleans, arguing that it was getting in the way of the federal government’s 1975 court-ordered desegregation plan. When parents protested that they wanted to be the ones choosing their kids’ schools, not the Department of Justice, Holder’s lawyers told the court that parents lacked the standing to make their views known.
If anyone has standing in their child’s education, it’s parents. And parents in New Orleans said that racial balance was less important to them than being able to choose a school that educates their child. Ultimately, Holder had to give up.
Ultimately, this fight is about punching bullies like Eric Holder, Bill de Blasio and the NAACP in the nose. Negotiating with bullies doesn’t work. Inflicting pain does. That’s why the heroes in this fight are the parents and the activists who defiantly stand with them because it’s the right thing to do.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s passion for school choice is eloquently laid out in Gov. Jindal’s op-ed. First, Gov. Jindal makes the case against the status quo:
In New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio has embarked on a systematic campaign to destroy the city’s burgeoning charter school movement. He’s diverting more than $200 million in funding marked for charter schools, and has also thrown hundreds of students out of their promised school buildings. He has also declared his intent to nullify arrangements that allow charters to locate in existing public schools rent-free.
The mayor’s open warfare against Eva Moskowitz, who founded a network of 22 charter schools, has all the markings of a petulant tyrant holding low-income students hostage. De Blasio has said, “There’s no way in hell Eva Moskowitz should get free rent” — as if the 6,700 students in the charter schools she runs were a mere afterthought in his personal vendetta against a fellow Democrat.
Last May, he told a teachers-union forum that Moskowitz “has to stop being tolerated, enabled, supported.” Yes, by all means, let’s not “tolerate” someone behind a movement to empower parents and students with more — and better — education choices. This woman who is making it possible for low-income kids to have an equal opportunity for a quality education must be stopped.
Gov. Jindal gets it. He’s consistently talked about school choice in the context of giving students a shot at the American Dream. He’s even got a history of fighting for his policies:
In Louisiana, we know a thing or two about government authorities meddling in parents’ right to choose the schools that are best for their children. President Obama’s Justice Department filed a lawsuit trying to impede our program that gives parents of low-income students in failing schools an opportunity to attend a better school. Fully nine in 10 students participating in the program are minorities, yet the Justice Department seeks to block the program on the grounds that it would lead to racial segregation. The lawsuit would be funny if it weren’t so sad — and if the lives of so many young African-American children weren’t at stake.
President Obama’s Justice Department filed their lawsuit to placate their allies in the teachers union. That’s the same reason why Mayor de Blasio is implementing his anti-choice policies in NYC. It’s shameful that President Obama and Mayor de Blasio worry more about placating their special interest allies than they worry about doing what’s right for the nation.
In that respect, President Obama and Mayor de Blasio are showing their anti-American stripes. If they cared about making life better for everyone, they wouldn’t be attempting to implement these misguided policies.
Thankfully, people are standing up for themselves and their families rather than just caving in the face of the Left’s peer pressure.
Gov. Jindal understands this, which is why I think he’s the favorite to be the GOP presidential nominee. It isn’t thatI haven’t notice that other polls show Christie or Bush or Rand Paul leading or near the top. It’s that Gov. Jindal has a lengthy history of domestic policy successes without angering the GOP’s conservative base.
Gov. Jindal has championed school choice. He’s pushed tax reform. Those are definitely issues conservatives will positively respond to. Most importantly, he hasn’t hugged President Obama like Gov. Christie and he hasn’t been a foreign policy pacifist like Sen. Paul.
Technorati: Bobby Jindal, School Choice, Tax Reform, Chris Christie, Rand Paul, Pacifism, National Security, GOP, President Obama, Eric Holder, Justice Department, Bill de Blasio, Teachers Unions, Democrats, Election 2014
Tuesday night, Greta van Susteren took exception to NYC Mayor de Blasio’s shutting down several charter schools. In this video, she properly framed it as a moral issue:
Here’s the partial transcript of van Susteren expressing her moral outrage:
GRETA: You know Mayor, I’ve actually walked through a charter school in NYC and it’s like one part of it is a charter school and the other is the public school. It is like walking from one universe into another universe. It’s the most astounding thing, whether it’s how clean it is, whether there are colorful drawings on the walls where it looks like students are learning or you walk into the other area and it looks like a prison.
Here’s how Mayor Giuliani responded:
MAYOR GIULIANI: The objective here should be they should all be like charter schools.
GRETA: Oh absolutely.
GIULIANI: We should be moving in the direction of hundreds, if not thousands, of charter schools and those other schools that are decrepit and not doing their jobs — we had 100 schools a year that weren’t doing their job for like 20 straight years. I closed some of them down. Mayor Bloomberg closed down a lot of them and he took a lot of heat for that.
When Mayor de Blasio announced the shutting down of those charter schools, he told hundreds of minority students that they weren’t getting a shot at the American Dream. That’s the definition of immorality. That isn’t our national identity.
Mayor de Blasio’s actions spoke something exceptionally clearly. His actions clearly stated that the teachers union’s priorities were more important than minorities’ priorities. That isn’t just unacceptable. That’s reprehensible. That’s disgusting.
Bill DeBlasio, one of the biggest card-carrying hardline progressives in the United States, insisted that he doesn’t hate minorities or charter schools when interviewed by Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough:
“I don’t understand your positions on charters,” stated Mr. Scarborough. “The waiting list is 50,000. And it’s not a bunch of rich kids from Manhattan that want to get in there, it’s some of the poorest, most disadvantaged children of colors.”
“For me, charter schools make sense because they can teach us how to make the entire public school system better. Why not expand, why not open the doors, figure out a way to let that 50,000 get into new charter schools? … We can learn from these charter schools some things that are working,” he continued.
Ms. Brzezinski further brought up Mr. de Blasio’s 16-year-old son, Dante, as she inquired about some charter co-locations recently canceled by the de Blasio administration.
“Let me ask it this way mayor: With all due respect, your son goes to–is it Brooklyn Tech? Has a $13 million endowment, it’s a highly-selective school; you’re very excited, I’m sure, that he goes there. If you found out that he wasn’t going there next year, wouldn’t you want to know what the plan was? Do you think you played this out in a way that might not have been effective?” she asked.
Mr. de Blasio insisted he had nothing against charter schools, but he is focused on the broader student population. ”I’ve never been against charter schools,” he said. “I have to worry about 1.1 million kids a year. By the way, only 70,000 go to charters. But I care about those 70,000.”
Mr. DeBlasio’s insistence that he’s “never been against charter schools” is a stunning lie. He’s opposed charter schools since before getting elected to succeed Mayor Bloomberg.
Mayor de Blasio’s statement that he worries “about 1.1 million kids a year” is spin. I’d love hearing his explanation of how letting 70,000 charter school students hurts 1.1 traditional public school students. I’m betting the best he could do is more outrageous spin.
Check out this article about the feud between de Blasio and Eva Moskowitz:
Mayor Bill de Blasio is rescinding three of the 17 charter-school plans previously approved by the Bloomberg administration. To the de Blasio camp, this is a judicious, well-reasoned course correction. To Eva Moskowitz, who runs the only three schools being completely rejected, the decision is a politically motivated vendetta.
That de Blasio and Moskowitz are bitter antagonists is not new: As a candidate, de Blasio used his harshest language to attack her and the Success Academies she’s created.
It’s never been a secret that Democrats are beholden to public employee unions. They’re most beholden to the teachers unions. Playing connect-the-dots, it isn’t difficult to come to the conclusion that de Blasio cares more about the teachers unions, which hate charter schools, than he cares about underprivileged students, especially minorities.
When push came to shove, the teachers unions got the red carpet treatment while minority students got mistreated, even abused. When a decision was made, de Blasio chose to exile minority students to an uphill fight to achieve the American Dream.
He essentially did to these charter school students what George Wallace did when he stood in the doorway at the University of Alabama to prevent black students from enrolling at the university. There’s no question that some will criticize me as being provocative. Similarly, there’s no question that de Blasio’s decision to shut down charter schools that serve minority students is every bit as racist as Gov. Wallace’s actions 50 years ago.
This Peggy Noonan article dovetails nicely with Glenn Reynolds’ excellent column about “Irish Democracy”, which I wrote about in this post. First, here’s Dr. Reynolds’ explanation of the foundation of Irish Democracy:
In his excellent book, Two Cheers For Anarchism, Professor James Scott writes:
One need not have an actual conspiracy to achieve the practical effects of a conspiracy. More regimes have been brought, piecemeal, to their knees by what was once called ‘Irish Democracy,’ the silent, dogged resistance, withdrawal, and truculence of millions of ordinary people, than by revolutionary vanguards or rioting mobs.
Simply put, people refusing to buy insurance through the Anything But Affordable Care Act’s exchanges are putting the ABACA in impossible financial straights. This was made necessary when Senate Democrats and this administration wouldn’t listen to the American people. In Ms. Noonan’s opinion, they still aren’t listening:
As the president made his jaunty claims and the senators and congressmen responded semirapturously I kept thinking of four words: Meanwhile, back in America…
Meanwhile, back in America, the Little Sisters of the Poor were preparing their legal briefs. The Roman Catholic order of nuns first came to America in 1868 and were welcomed in every city they entered. They now run about 30 homes for the needy across the country. They have, quite cruelly, been told they must comply with the ObamaCare mandate that all insurance coverage include contraceptives, sterilization procedures, morning-after pills. If they don’t—and of course they can’t, being Catholic, and nuns—they will face ruinous fines.
In this instance, it isn’t just that the Obama administration isn’t listening to the American people. It’s that they’re ignoring the Constitution, too. That’s before considering the fact that this administration made exceptions to the ABACA for its well-connected friends.
The message sent to the nation is exceptionally straightforward: Well-connected friends of Barack Obama get special privileges. People whom this President despises get the shaft. (That’s right. I didn’t forget about the bitter clingers.) President Obama’s disdain for blue collar people isn’t news. It’s just disgusting. That’s why people have turned their back on him.
Meanwhile, back in America…
Meanwhile, back in America, conservatives targeted and harassed by the Internal Revenue Service still await answers on their years-long requests for tax exempt status. When news of the IRS targeting broke last spring, agency officials lied about it, and one took the Fifth. The president said he was outraged, had no idea, read about it in the papers, boy was he going to get to the bottom of it. An investigation was announced but somehow never quite materialized.
If ever there was something that got the masses fuming, it should be the thought of a politically ruthless administration using the IRS as a weapon to eliminate its political enemies. And yes, this administration has used the IRS as a weapon against TEA Party activists and other conservative organizations.
In less than 3 years, we’ll have the opportunity to wipe the memories of this administration from our memory. It’s imperative that we accomplish that. It’s imperative that we elect someone that will listen to the American people. That means electing a pro-reform governor that respects the Constitution, preferably Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, John Kasich or Mike Pence.
I didn’t include Jeb Bush or Christie in that bunch. They don’t respect the Constitution. People want politicians that don’t think of themselves as being above the Constitution or the rule of law. Bush supports Common Core, which wants to strip away local control of education. That’s certainly anti-constitutional. Christie supports gun control, something totally at odds with the Constitution.
It’s time we elected a president that’s run things and accomplished things that’ve helped families. Bobby Jindal fits that description. While campaigning, he listened to parents who hated the education options their children had. That’s why he pushed for school choice. Thanks to his listening, school choice legislation was signed into law in Louisiana.
John Kasich fits that description. He fought for the same union reforms that Scott Walker did. He also cut taxes while eliminating Ohio’s deficit. Thanks to Gov. Kasich’s popular pro-growth agenda, Ohio is headed in the right direction.
Scott Walker listened to Wisconsinites’ cries for lower property taxes. He pushed union reforms that stripped them of the right to hold school districts hostage by saying that they had to buy health insurance through the teachers union’s insurance company. As a direct result, health insurance costs to school districts dropped dramatically…until the ABACA was semi-implemented.
Whether you call it the TEA Party movement, Irish Democracy or whether it’s just doing what President Reagan believed in, it’s time for conservatives to elect someone that actually wants the people to decide what’s best for them. We don’t need another administration that thinks it’s supremely qualified to tell families what’s best for them.
Yesterday, I wrote this post highlighting Paul Thissen’s reaction to my post about how unions didn’t build the middle class. The activists in the MOB, aka the Minnesota Organization of Bloggers, aren’t unlike NATO in that, an attack against one is an attack against all of us. When they saw that Speaker Thissen had taken issue with my post, Mitch Berg and the Lady Logician jumped into the discussion. Here’s how the Lady Logician responded to Speaker Thissen’s tweets:
You misrepresent the smaller gov’t policy stance to mean no govt & that is simply NOT what small gov’t ppl want. No one is arguing against roads & education but when govt gets in2 the minutia of telling ppl what lightbulbs 2 buy or what HEALTHCARE to buy or whether or not they can own a specific type of dog, then we are going to argue.
Here’s Mitch’s response to one of Speaker Thissen’s tweets:
The evidence is, in fact, that gov’t research *follows* corp. innovation. Ditto education. Not other way around.
Mitch wasn’t done schooling Speaker Thissen. Here’s the rest of Mitch’s tweets to Speaker Thissen:
So did gov’t build roads out of pure goodwill? Or did biz pay for them? You’re saying government is the only body that can give us clean water? Record shows that’s untrue. Most municipal water systems in the US *started* as private enterprises. Nearly a quarter still are. The “gov’t brings us all riches” argument is the black/white one. Markets, not politics, deal well with nuance. Either is “private enterprise is lost without government”. Or rather it’s a fallacious place to start the conversation. At best, it’s “assisted” by gov’t. But the idea that prosperity follows infrastructure is utterly ahistorical.
That’s a typical Mitch-slap. Spoeaker Thissen probably didn’t realize conservatives were this principled about free markets and limited government. The reality is that Speaker Thissen didn’t address why he thinks government is equipped to run a complex online health insurance business for the entire state. That’s essentially what MNsure is. (That isn’t just my opinion. It’s what Jim Nobles said on Almanac last Friday.)
Was government responding to free markets when they passed legislation that specified what types of lightbulbs could be used? Why did government inject itself into the discussion as to what dogs were legal in Minnesota? Was there an outbreak of dog violence against people? Or were they just inserting themselves into an issue because they were reacting to one of their special interest allies? I’m pretty certain it’s the latter.
Speaker Thissen’s tweet that questioned whether people could get to their jobs or companies could move their goods without public roads dovetails with President Obama’s now-infamous statement that entrepreneurs didn’t build their companies, that government did. That’s BS. Mitch is right in saying that government might assist entrepreneurs but government isn’t what makes businesses thrive.
The Anything But Affordable Care Act is a perfect example of how twisted leftist thinking is. I wrote here about how MNsure made things worse for one Minnesota family:
This Minnesota family is a young married couple with three children. Until ObamaCare and Dayton’s MNsure came along they shared the cost of their Blue Cross-Blue Shield family health insurance policy 50/50 with the father’s employer. Thanks to ObamaCare, the cost of that policy sky rocketed and is no longer affordable to the family. After endless hours of working with MNsure, here is what resulted.
Without the parent’s consent, MNsure jammed their three children onto government insurance. The children are now covered by Medicaid at no cost to the family or employer, but 100 percent cost to the taxpayers. The father had to go with a single insurance plan from his employer and purchase a separate new policy for his wife. Because of the confusion and disarray at MNsure, neither he nor his wife currently has health insurance ID cards for the insurance they have already paid for.
That’s why limited government conservatives complain about government overstepping their constitutional authority. Additionally, this shows government isn’t capable of running a business.
In other words, government should get its claws out of the things it isn’t qualified to do and focus on the things that constitutions limits it to. Limited government conservatives don’t hate government, even though that’s the propaganda that ABM and other leftist propaganda organizations spread. It’s that we understand that the best decisions for families happen at a family’s kitchen table.
It’s time Speaker Thissen figured that out.
Technorati: Paul Thissen, Nanny State, Anything But Affordable Care Act, MNsure, Transportation, Water Treatment Facilities, DFL, Limited Government Conservatism, Free Markets, Entrepreneurship, Capitalism, MNGOP
Jeb Bush’s education reform agenda, outlined in this article, starts with the declaration that “The best solution to our nation’s failing educational system is empowering parents.” I don’t disagree with that. It’s that I can’t figure out what empowering parents has to do with implementing Common Core School Standards. Gov. Bush is a big proponent of CCSS.
Consumer choice created the most innovative and powerful economy in the world. Choice makes computers cheaper, images sharper, cars safer, and services faster.
Choice rewards success and weeds out stagnation, inefficiency, and failure.
This is why school choice is critical to the education-reform movement, and why National School Choice Week, which began this Sunday, January 26, is more than just a proclamation. It is a call to action for one of our most cherished principles.
How is it that parents have a say over every aspect of their children’s lives, yet often must delegate the critical decision of where they go to school to political boards and government bureaucracies? This has created an education monopoly that spurns accountability, views innovation as a threat, and prioritizes the job security of employees over the learning of children.
School choice won’t matter if CCSS is adopted because everything will be written at the national level. That means a one-size-fits-all curriculum from coast to coast and border to border.
Text books are already getting ‘adapted’ to fit CCSS. In Bill Gates’ and Jeb Bush’s worlds, adapting text books to that day’s prevailing political correctness is more important than publishing text books that teach students the truth about American history. History books that fit into CCSS’s accepted category preach victimization, not American exceptionalism.
I’m not advocating for only teaching students that America is exceptional. My first criteria is that the truth be told, warts and all, in as great of detail as is applicable to the students’ grade level.
CCSS proponents repeat the mantra that it’s been adopted by state governments. That’s misleading at best. In most instances, it’s been implemented without legislative approval. It was adopted when the executive branch applied for Race to the Top (RttP) funding, effectively bypassing the other political branch of government.
Without people providing checks and balances, systems get corrupted. If you doubt that, how’s HealthCare.gov working out for you? This George Will column highlights why CCSS must be rejected:
At any time, it is more likely there will be half a dozen innovative governors than one creative federal education bureaucracy. And the mistakes made by top-down federal reforms are continental mistakes.
Universalism should be rejected ASAP. That’s because one-size-fits-all approaches a) don’t work and b) aren’t what the people want.
I agree with Gov. Bush that school choice is imperative to improving this nation’s educational system. Unfortunately, his advocacy for CCSS is as counterproductive to school choice as it is detrimental to students.
President Obama and his apologists have alternated between calling their health ‘reform’ legislation the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare or “the health law” depending on what the focus groups say works best. Republicans should simplify matters by calling it what it is. The moniker that fits best is the Anything But Affordable Care Act.
This article doesn’t deal with new names for this terrible law. It just talks about the terrible effects it’s having on people:
“When the Affordable Care Act came out with this mandate, the initial reaction was, ‘OK, we’re doing that already for the most part,’” said Brandon Nelson, director of labor relations and benefits for Anoka-Hennepin District 11.
But “the penalties get your attention, so we’re just making sure,” he said.
The district is analyzing employee data over a 12-month look-back period to determine which employees currently work more than 30 hours and are not offered health insurance from the district.
As the largest school district in the state, Anoka-Hennepin has nearly 6,000 employees; 145 of them, about 2.5 percent, are full-time employees and are not offered health insurance from the district, according to Nelson.
Of those employees, Nelson estimates that the district will offer 75 of them insurance by 2015 and adjust assignments for the remaining 70 to ensure they are working less than 30 hours each week.
That’s the first part of the statistics. Here’s the most troubling of the statistics:
The district typically contributes $648 each month toward single health insurance plans and no more than $1,042 per month on family plans. If employee counts and insurance pricing stay constant, the district could incur anywhere from $583,200 to $937,800 in additional expenditures next year if all 75 employees elect to get insurance through the district.
That the Anoka-Hennepin district is thinking they’ll see an additional “$583,200 to $937,800 in additional expenditures” should send the signal to taxpayers that their property taxes will jump significantly. That’s the type of thing that will quickly sink the Anything But Affordable Care Act.
That’s a newly mentioned problem for the bill. Already, young people visiting the MNsure website are noticing that their insurance premiums are a rip-off. Young families are noticing that their insurance situation just got dramatically worse. If that isn’t terrible enough, the Anything But Affordable Care Act apparently will lead to higher property taxes, too.
Whether you’re Sen. Franken who voted for this bill or Gov. Dayton who campaigned for creating the MNsure monstrosity or the DFL legislators who voted for the legislation creating the health insurance exchange, the reality is the same. The Anything But Affordable Care Act will force school districts across the state to raise property taxes while cutting some of their employees’ hours.
Let’s see the DFL explain that mess away.
Technorati: Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, Anything But Affordable Care Act, Al Franken, Mark Dayton, Health Insurance Exchange, School Districts, Property Tax Increases, Middle Class Squeeze, DFL, Election 2014
I’ve written here frequently about foolish people writing for the St. Cloud Times. This time, I get to write about Dr. Roy Saigo’s wise words, mostly because they’re the skills I learned as a supervisor at Fingerhut. Here’s something Dr. Saigo said that I can relate to:
The second thing Collins emphasizes is the most effective CEO is not a celebrity. If the boss is a celebrity, then you have “one genius and 1,000 helpers.” He talks about CEOs who tell the media they are going to produce the best products, be the best grocery chain, university, football team, etc. Yet, successful companies build their businesses with practical, achievable goals and little fanfare. I call this accountability.
Part of my training to be a supervisor was a class called Interaction Management. One of the things that IM emphasized was identifying key principles. These key principles could be anything from getting a simple job done that takes little time to empowering workers to master a multi-faceted responsibility that might take 3-4 hours.
At Fingerhut then, the key to accomplishing important responsibilities wasn’t about instructing the employee what he or she needed to do. It was about telling them about their responsibilities to their co-workers and their employer. How they got from Point A to Point B wasn’t important as long as the thing got done properly and in the fastest time possible.
I tried to live by a saying I’d heard from a former night shift supervisor. His instructions to his workers was simple: make me look good in the morning. Which leads to this key paragraph in Dr. Saigo’s article:
A successful team develops a positive, can-do spirit, toughness and, most importantly, trust and a sharing of the joy of success.
Ronald Reagan once said that “It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you don’t care who gets the credit.” Of all of the wise things Ronald Reagan said, that sentence was consistently proven true. It’s something that others have picked up on. Superblogger Glenn Reynolds wrote a book a few years back. Appropriately, it was titled “An Army of Davids.” The key principle that Reynolds conveyed to his audience was that there were hundreds of experts just waiting to be discovered and utilized through the internet. He didn’t think that everyone on the internet was a genius. It’s just that he thought that he knew that, for every highly-publicized expert on TV, there were hundreds of experts on the internet just waiting to be found.
Reynolds’ attitude wouldn’t be possible if he was an egomaniac. Successful people have to have an ego because they couldn’t survive without it. The difference between successful people and and egomaniac is that egomaniacs are control freaks. They’re the fastest people to the microphone when there’s success. They’re also the people you won’t see admitting failure.
Reynolds couldn’t have written that book if he was a control freak because he needed to admit that there were lots of outstanding people in every discipline in the United States. Thanks to his book, lots of people were empowered.
It’s political light years away from the next presidential election season but it isn’t too early to start drafting potential GOP presidential candidates. Atop my list is Scott Walker, Wisconsin’s governor. Marc Thiessen’s article sums up Gov. Walkers qualifications perfectly:
During the 2012 recall fight in Wisconsin, a group of protesters dressed as zombies disrupted Gov. Scott Walker’s speech at a ceremony for kids participating in the Special Olympics. Walker just ignored the protesters. Afterwards, talk radio host Charlie Sykes told Walker he should have “gone Chris Christie on them.” But Walker wanted to keep the focus on the Special Olympics athletes, saying “it was their day.”
The incident is revealing. Walker and Christie, the New Jersey governor, are friends, and they have both found a way to win in purple states that have not voted for a Republican president in a quarter-century. But they each did it in very different ways.
Christie is moderate in policy, but immoderate in temperament.
Walker is moderate in temperament, but immoderate in policy.
Activists are drawn to Christie’s gruff exterior because they want a fighter. There’s no questioning whether Gov. Christie is a fighter. Still, for all his combativeness, many of his policies are what I’d expect of a New England Republican. That makes Gov. Christie significantly less appealing than Gov. Walker:
Walker is a tea party hero thanks to his courageous stand against the public-sector unions in Wisconsin. Cruz may have “faux filibustered” Obamacare, but Walker faced down 100,000 protesters outside the Capitol in Madison and won. He not only passed his reforms despite unbelievable odds, he became the first governor in U.S. history to survive a recall election. He’s both a fighter and a winner, a compelling combination for the conservative base.
Moreover, Walker’s appeal to the right goes beyond collective bargaining. As governor, he passed a raft of other conservative reforms that went virtually unnoticed because of the collective-bargaining fight. He signed legislation enacting voter identification requirements, permitting the concealed carry of firearms, defunding Planned Parenthood, prohibiting any health exchange operating in Wisconsin from covering abortion, reducing taxes, expanding school choice and reforming entitlements. Walker is an across-the-board, unflinching, full-spectrum conservative.
But Walker also has a proven ability to win the votes of moderates and reform-minded independents. While Walker is often portrayed as a “divisive” figure, exit polls in the June 2012 gubernatorial recall election showed that about one in six Walker voters also planned to vote for Barack Obama in the November presidential election. And, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “those confounding Obama-Walker voters of 2012…[are] still with us.” Two separate 2013 polls of Wisconsin voters, the paper reported, show that “11% approve of both politicians.”
Put differently, Christie is the bully who supports many liberal policies like gun control and global warming. Gov. Walker has a mental toughness that can’t be questioned. He stared down the thugs in Wisconsin and won the fight for important reforms. Everyone knows about the collective bargaining rights fight. Few noticed that he got other reforms passed, too.
Most importantly, I won’t have to worry whether Gov. Walker will abandon conservatism’s core principles. He won’t. He’ll pick great judges. He’ll feature a positive pro-growth agenda. He’ll be an unapologetic conservative with a lengthy history of conservative accomplishments.
George Will noted another appealing part of Gov. Walker’s in this column:
To fight the recall, during which opponents disrupted Walker’s appearance at a Special Olympics event and squeezed Super Glue into the locks of a school he was to visit, Walker raised more than $30?million, assembling a nationwide network of conservative donors that could come in handy if he is reelected next year.
It’s great that Gov. Walker is a proven fundraiser. He’d need it if he runs against Hillary in 2016. More importantly, though, he understands the value of a strong organization.
In other words, Gov. Walker a) is an unapologetic conservative, b) has a lengthy list of conservative accomplishments, c) can rally the conservative base while still appealing to independents and d) is a prolific fundraiser. That’s quite the trifecta heading into 2016.