AZ blazes educational trail with ESA vouchers

July 3, 2017

Empowerment Scholarship Accounts open educational choice to all students

The daily newspaper, which adamantly opposes parental choice in education, provided an editorial platform for Sen. Debbie Lesko to inform the public of the passage of her bill authorizing Empowerment Scholarship Accounts.

Does anyone smell a rat?

The newspaper titles Sen. Lesko’s  AZ I See It op-ed Lawmaker: Stop spreading fear about vouchers. But the machinations don’t stop there.  A video accompanies the online version of Sen. Lesko’s commentary. Straddling the back of an orange settee, reporter Joanna Allhands, looking like she’s about to take her vehicle to a do-it-yourself car wash, engages in a cheesy display to make the point that she and the newspaper she works for, oppose the accounts.

As the AZ Senate President Pro Tempore, Lesko didn’t just fall off the political turnip truck. She’s a savvy leader who has been an active member of the community and has served in the state legislature since 2009. She’s also a parent of three children and a grandparent, which gives her more than passing familiarity with public schools and their inability to serve every child effectively.

A Republican representing Legislative District 21, Lesko was the sponsor of Senate Bill 1431, legislation expanding Empowerment Scholarship Accounts, which gives all parents the ability to make educational choices in the best interests of their own children.

Under the provisions of Sen. Lesko’s legislation, signed into law by Gov. Doug Ducey, all students will be eligible for this educational opportunity. It was originally available only for students with special needs.

Republicrat Kate Brophy McGee shamefully joined with unified Democrats  — tied at the hip with the educrat unions, as disclosed by Center for Responsive Politics —  to vote against the measure. It passed, despite her efforts to undermine parental choice.

Center for Arizona Policy carries an excellent overview of the ESA program, including information regarding the unsuccessful lawsuits filed by the education establishment attempting to halt the opportunity for Arizona children to achieve academic success.


AZ Regents chair gets testy at challenge, hurls personal insults & UPDATE

June 17, 2017

Mark Finchem, a Republican representing Dist. 11 in Tucson doesn’t meet the high standard of dress established by former state legislator Greg Patterson — who has since gone to law school and is now the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) chairman. Patterson oversees the three state universities he previously sucker punched for their imperial excesses.

It no doubt galls Patterson, who is also a CPA, that the less educated Rep. Finchem is a member of the Judiciary and Public Safety Committee and Vice Chair of two other significant committees.

In a private meeting that Patterson secretly recorded,* he laid into Finchem — who along with East Valley Rep. Jill Norgaard (R-Dist. 18) — had the temerity to co-sponsor a bill to rein in the authority of the board that Patterson chairs.

Apparently, she dresses well enough and is suitably degreed to suit Patterson, but her perch as Chair of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education, gives her a level of prominence that rankles the ‘Top Regent’ who takes his title very seriously. Bully Patterson referred to Rep. Finchem’s western attire as a  “costume that doesn’t work.” He advised Finchem to trim his mustache and buy a suit before abruptly leaving the meeting.

Though Patterson has been a registered lobbyist since 1997, he fails miserably in the area of persuasive techniques.

This news article provides background on the unsavory meeting, and includes disapproving comments of Patterson’s actions from Vice Chair Bill Ridenour, who takes over as chairman July 1. Board of Regents President Eileen Klein, also condemned Patterson’s behavior, saying it was not reflective of how the regents do business. 

The Arizona Board of Regents voted on Jan. 20 to oppose SB 1061, a bill proposing to cap tuition and fee increases at two percent per year at the state’s public universities. The bill was co-sponsored by nine Republican state senators and one Republican state representative and would have significantly restricted the power of the regents and the universities to impose ever escalating tuition and fees on students. Readers have to plow through ten paragraphs of self-congratulatory hogwash to get to ABOR’s opposition to restrictions to rein in student costs. 

Universities do not have market forces and shareholders to enforce spending discipline, so foisting the trickery of “a $1 billion/30-year plan to fund new capital and rebuild aging infrastructure without raising taxes,” sounds reasonable to the elites who won’t be around in 2047 to answer for its ruinous impact.

One burning question remains: Were they dressed appropriately enough to meet Greg Patterson’s exacting standards as they implemented the epic con job?

ABOR Chair Greg Patterson has resigned after hurling an insult-laden spew at state legislator Mark Finchem.

As of his resignation Monday June 19, the pretentious Board of Regents chairman is now officially a goner, though he still had three years on his term. According to this report in the Arizona Republic, he laid off his obtuse insults — which he secretly recorded and then disseminated to shocked regent staffers — on being “overzealous.” He also declared he was in a “caffeine-induced rage.”  If those foolish excuses weren’t enough, he had one more up what we assume was his perfectly starched and ironed sleeve.  He didn’t want to be a “distraction.”

Patterson won’t distract anyone. But as he toils at his lobbyist day job, will he be able to attract clients who don’t want to risk having their grooming insulted?


Boorish grads boo U.S. Ed. Sec. Betsy DeVos

May 11, 2017

Commencement season brings with it prominent speakers to bestow words of wisdom on graduates as they leave the confines of academia and prepare to make their way in the world. In generations past, the speakers were greeted with cordiality as the eager college seniors looked forward to putting their years of education to good use.

Unfortunately, times have changed. Many students, such as those at U of Calif. Berkeley, are practiced rioters. Twelve previous years of El-Hi have inculcated them with massive doses of liberalism — five days a week, 180 days a year. Rioters are not alone.  There are now a substantial number of “snowflakes,” who react negatively to instruction or issues they disdain, needing safe spaces, soothing music, coloring books, puppies and hot cocoa to comfort them.

They are products of non-competitiveness, where everyone on the team gets a participation award, but there are no actual winners, or conversely, losers. The prospect of hurting a losing competitor’s feelings is too unbearable to comprehend. Graduates who are unable to speak grammatically correct English are indicative of the lack of time spent on communication skills. What American History is taught has been given a new slant along with factual revisionism. Americans are not world leaders who live in freedom, granted by a masterfully crafted Constitution that invokes a Creator. It is an aggressor nation that oppresses its citizens and exploits the environment.

Graduates are not likely to favor capitalism over communism, because they view the former as exploitive, though they have no real grasp on the issues. Many of them voted for Socialist Bernie Sanders. They refer to politicians they don’t like as “Hitler,” lacking any understanding of the atrocities committed by the Nazi Third Reich.

It is with this backdrop that U. S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, was scheduled to give the commencement address at Bethune-Cookman University — a historically black university in Daytona Beach, Florida on Wednesday.

DeVos was greeted with loud boos and turned backs as she reached the lectern to deliver her commencement remarks. As she spoke, she was booed, shouted at, and met with calls of “Go home!” from students and audience members. Minutes into her speech, the president of BCU, Edison Jackson, stopped her to address the disruptive students. Jackson said degrees would be mailed to students if their behavior continued. “Choose which way you want to go,” he said.

DeVos began again, but the toothless warning went unheeded as the boos increased.  She addressed some of the opposition to her speaking at the black university, asking for those critical of her to hear her out, voicing the Trump administration’s support for black colleges and universities. “We support you and we will continue to support you,” she said.

Business Insider reports that the weeks leading up to her speech were marked by vocal opposition by students, civil rights organizations, and Florida education groups, who claimed DeVos has no understanding of the history and significance of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs)

Parents often go into debt to provide the college education they believe to be the key to their children’s successful futures. But instead of being educated, they are being indoctrinated and propagandized by mostly leftwing unionist instructors. This is where their National Education Association (NEA*) dues go. The American Federation of Teachers (AFT*) has the same agenda. American children spend more time each day with these agents of the left than they do their own parents.

On Tuesday, petitions carrying the names of over 8,000 students were delivered to university leaders urging them to “disinvite” DeVos from addressing the commencement ceremony.

Victimhood is a status graduating college seniors — of any background or ethnicity —-should ditch. It clashes with caps and gowns.

*H/T Center for Responsive Politics


Janet Napolitano: She’s only gotten worse

May 1, 2017

Right thinking Arizonans dealt as best they could under the oppressive, radically left-wing Gov. Janet Napolitano. It wasn’t easy as she repeatedly slashed her veto pen over excellent bills — earning her the moniker J-No,  unwaveringly appointed partisans to the state courts, and declared her bonding to open borders with her notorious statement, “You show me a 50-foot wall and I’ll show you a 51-foot ladder at the border. That’s the way the border works.”

We all knew Janet Napolitano never had a commitment to securing America against invasion.

Who knew she was also a crook?

Breitbart features a revealing article by Chriss W. Street that reminds us of how fortunate we are to be rid of this wretched liberal who abandoned her gubernatorial post to join the Obama administration as the ineffectual Secretary of Homeland Security. Now as the coarse and boorish president of the University of California system, Napolitano is accused in this recently released 167 page report by the California State Auditor Elaine Howle of hiding $175 million in budget surpluses while continuing to raise student tuition.

The audit found that the UC spent $32.5 billion on expenses during the 2015-16 school year to fund 10 campuses, five medical centers, and its Office of the President headquarters. Although the UC states that its “fundamental missions are teaching, research and public service,” the UC only spent “$6.7 billion (21 percent) on teaching, “$4.6 billion (14 percent) on research” and “$630 million (2 percent) on public service.” The other $20.6 billion (63 percent) was spent on non-fundamental activities.

This Los Angeles Times editorial tries its damndest, wildly contorting language using “might not” twice in the single headline, to give cover to Napolitano as it questions the audit. This is an example:

“The audit puzzlingly implies that non-restricted funds are either being hoarded or misspent on illegitimate uses instead of direct student services. One of the supposedly problematic projects it names is UC’s Washington Center in the District of Columbia, where students from all campuses are eligible to live in a dorm and take courses. If this isn’t a direct student service, it’s hard to imagine what is. Other uses of the money include helping undocumented students who fear deportation and reducing UC’s carbon footprint.”

Could the newspaper’s agenda be any more clear?

This may, might, could convince the equally far leftist California Gov. Jerry Brown (brief video), but not many others. Janet Napolitano needs to be replaced.


“Mom, Dad…about those slaves you owned…..”

April 22, 2017

Universities foster and elevate victimhood

In today’s zany world, it had to happen. Intending-to-produce-“snowflake“-guilt courses such as the Problem of Whiteness within the African Cultural Studies program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and White Privilege along with courses in Black Lives Matter. As colleges offer monetary scholarship inducements at Sam Houston State University in Texas lunacy has reached its zenith.

Now we read that Students at Western Kentucky University voted in favor of a resolution seeking to provide free tuition to black students as reparations for slavery. The Student Government Association passed this resolution Wednesday by a vote of 19-10, according to this report in the Lexington Herald-Leader. Their parents and other Kentucky taxpayers will be footing the bill for what the coddled students regard as free.

The Civil War ended over a hundred and fifty years ago. President Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, halted slavery with the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Today, any American with a determination to succeed can work, study, achieve and aided by a wide variety of academic scholarships, complete their education. 

Yet people out-hustle themselves to claim greater victim status. There are countless books on the topic, detailing every conceivable affront.  The very concept of victimization now carries with it an odd measure of prestige. Academia has fostered a nation of victims who revel in their new-found status and exhibit an ambivalence about growing up.

Writing for PJ Media, David Solway’s snowflake” description is as good as they come:

“Anyone who has followed academic issues since the anti-intellectual 1960s knows that the university is in serious trouble, catering to a professoriate that has bought into the travesty of “social justice” a coercive ideology obsessed with “victim groups.”

The university’s ancestral mission of pursuing truth has been replaced by a species of social engineering and leftist indoctrination. At the same time, it views its mandate as establishing a “safe space” for a student clientele that spends far too much of its time and energy “wringing its hands over pronouns, gluten and microaggressions” (link to Jon Brown at American Thinker) rather than devoting itself to the rigors of study and the acquisition of honest merit. These impoverished souls have come to be known as “snowflakes,” justifiably.”

The victim mentality is a cultural phenomena that looks to blame others for perceived shortcomings. For too many, the long acclaimed sense of personal responsibility has given way to desiring a mantle of inevitable weakness.  Universities stand as a testament to that foolish philosophy.

Recently the students at Notre Dame University protested Vice President Pence, a former Indiana governor and native son, as their commencement speaker, saying his appearance on campus “made them feel unsafe.”

Conservative Ann Coulter has been disinvited to speak at left-wing Berkeley University, where repression of First Amendment freedoms take center stage.

Here are but a few of our recent posts under the heading “academia”

April 17, 2017: Clemson Univ. teaches expecting promptness is racist.

April 10, 2017: Skewed news & rethinking the desirability of a college education

April 1, 2017: NAU educrat docks student’s grade for use of “Mankind”

Dec. 24, 2016: Tucker Carlson eviscerates overindulged, liberal college student


Clemson Univ. teaches expecting promptness is racist

April 17, 2017

Cultural divide expands even further; now extends to the clock

Diversity training scores another goose egg. Craig Bannister writing for cnsnews exposes the latest leftward lunacy coming out of what was previously referred to as higher education.

Clemson University’s “diversity education and training” instructs the university’s employees that every “cultural perspective regarding time” is equally valid, so it’s wrong to expect people to be prompt.

The university is spending nearly $27,000 on this program for its faculty members and the school’s President James P. Clements has pledged that ‘all employees will participate in the diversity plan in order to create a more inclusive environment on campus.

As an example, in one slide presentation, employees are taught that tardiness is acceptable because the concept of time is culturally relative. Thus, every culture’s perception of the actual time must be respected — since one “cultural perspective regarding time is neither more nor less valid than any other.”

Got that?  Chronic lateness  is no longer rude or disqualifying, but needs to be respected.

The presentation gives the example of “Alejandro,” who called a 9:00 a.m. meeting, and instructs that he should not rebuke a group of foreign professors and students who show up late: “Time may be considered precise or fluid depending on the culture.” The slide tutors that Alejandro shouldn’t impose his definition of time on others since doing so is not only disrespectful, but racist.

Bannister’s source is Campus Reform.

This past week SRAZ postedSkewed news & rethinking the desirability of a college education,” describing a professor at Fresno State University who took to twitter to opine, “To save American democracy, Trump must hang. The sooner and the higher, the better.” It melds with the Clemson madness. Our once revered institutions of higher learning have become liberal propaganda machines, dispensing outrageousness and putting the finishing touches on the 12 previous years of brainwashing by members of the leftwing teacher’s unions. Open Secrets reveals the donations made by the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), two of the largest lobbying groups in the country.

The deception grows as Clemson’s President James P. Clements sums his views up with these words on the university’s website: 

“It is important, as an institution of higher learning, to celebrate our diversity and help others see the importance of creating an environment of inclusive excellence.”

We should be celebrating unity — which strengthens, rather than separates us. That’s what America has represented to generations of legal immigrants who gratefully assimilated into Americans, making our heritage their own as they transitioned to speaking English,  embraced our traditions and honored the freedoms enshrined in our Constitution. It was known as Americanization.

In a paean to diversity, the inmates with multiple degrees are now overseeing an increasingly Balkanized asylum. President Clements’ annual base salary is $801,330.  No doubt he’s worth every cent.


Skewed news & rethinking the desirability of a college education

April 10, 2017

Aggressor professor morphs into victim, claims death threats lodged against him by fascists (political conservatives)

Fresno State University Professor Lars Maischak, who teaches — of all things — American History, a topic he appears not to comprehend, has been in the news recently.

We thought the Fresno Bee might have an update on this pathetic excuse for a lecturer. Instead, the newspaper headlines it’s article Breitbart News singles out Fresno State professor over tweet on Trump, describing Professor Maischak who advocated on his twitter account, “to save American democracy, Trump must hang. The sooner and the higher, the better.”

Maischak identifies himself as “teaching American History with a German accent at Fresno State.” He has a predilection for the words fascist and fascism which he uses liberally throughout his tweets. After he was outed, he used weak excuses to back away from his calls inciting murder of the President of the United States.

The Bee refers to Maischak as a “target,” rather than an insurrectionist. It repeatedly characterizes Breitbart News as “right-wing.”

The fault, you see, lies with Breitbart for calling attention to this anti-American ignoramus. Such is the view of the radicals inhabiting academia and the media today.

On the university’s website alongside its name are the words, “Discover, Diversity, Distinction.”  There was a time, not so long ago, when unity rather than diversity was celebrated. Now hyphenated Americans with questionable commitment to the USA, merit praise.

With Joseph L. Castro at the school’s helm and former Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano in charge of the entire California university system, it’s not difficult to see that the liberal skew is carefully cultivated and maintained. Castro’s absurd statement following Maischak’s treasonous comments said, “Statements made on his (Maischak‘s)  personal social media accounts are his alone and are not endorsed by nor reflect the position of the University.”

No chastisement.  No talk of firing or even a suspension.  Just a tacit signal that more of the same is OK with Castro.

The University President’s Commission on Human Relations and Equity provides an insight of what matters most in this liberal, liberal arts school. As an example, under a heading  KEY TERMS is Intersectionality: It’s described as “a theory and methodology developed in feminist studies, intersectionality (Crenshaw, 1989) reveals and explains the ways in which identity categories, such as gender, race, sexual orientation, ability and other axes (do they mean axis’) of identity, intersect to produce multiple and varied lived experiences and inequalities.  Intersectionality helps us understand how our multidimensional racialized, gendered, and sexualized social identities shape our experiences of power and oppression.”

Got that? Want to pay thousands to make sure your kids do?