By Doug Martin
Despite letter after letter and a strong physical presence in support of our democratically elected supt. of public instruction, the Pence/state board/CECI trio today set the ball in motion to steal more power from Glenda Ritz to carry on the billionaires' corporate-theocratic agenda I detail in my book Hoosier School Heist.
The whole attack against Glenda Ritz is, in essence, an attack against women who make up the majority of the teaching workforce. It is the same "Father-Knows Best" mentality that was at play with Mitch Daniels, which I wrote about a few years ago and cognitive linguist and political scientist George Lakoff has described extensively. Although I do not often see eye to eye with state board member Andrea Neal--who works for the Koch Brothers-associated Indiana Policy Review Foundation--I am glad she stood up and voted against the attack today on Ritz. Today's male attack against Glenda is very similar to the attack by Tony Bennett (who just received a mere $5,000 slap on the wrist for breaking the law) when he said in an email that his IDOE cronies needed to find ways to call out our supt. of public schools' "stupidity."
Let us talk about "stupidity."
I spent 6,000 hours, at least, studying this assault on public schools in Indiana and probably another 2.000 on what is going on across the nation. Even though smart people make the blueprint, those carrying out the orders, even though they are power hungry, greedy, and lapdogs of billionaires, are not very bright. Ironically, we have unelected members on the state board of education who are highly uneducated. In other words, "stupid." Stupid to country, stupid to democracy, and stupid to all things sacred.
Has Dan Elsener ever read the Upanishads and does he understand the Bible? My guess is probably not. He believes it is God's work he is doing, dragging Jesus from the cross and flipping the Savior on his head to propagate a free-market Christianity beginning in the early part of the 20th century and culminating in the type of Kerns Family propaganda which finds its way into think tanks, universities, the media, and rightwing evangelical borderline fascist TV shows.
Has Mike Pence read the real research on global warming, where the only debate is when (not if) the human race is going to die? No, he hasn't. The progress he promotes is leading us straight to the grave; the so-called jobs he promises by using taxpayer money to train future workers in our public schools have all been shipped overseas. For the jobs left, the billionaire plan Pence wants to utilize will merely flood the market so that these over-trained workers can be paid less.
Does Brad Oliver read Walt Whitman to his wife at night, that compassionate and spiritual poetic line stating that "every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you?" Don't bet on it.
It is time to tell it like it is. It is a world with dumb and corrupt people in charge. Our country's US DOE is run by Bill Gates even though he never graduated from college, doesn't read neuroscience, and lacks creativity, spirituality, and compassion.
You can't measure creativity, spiritual wellbeing, or the ability to live peacefully with bugs, flowers, and animals by a standardized test score, even though Evan Bayh, now working for the Apollo Global Management private equity firm that owns McGraw-Hill Financial, isn't going to say otherwise.
I have been saying this all along, in every city I visit and on every radio show I do. There is no sitting at the table with these people. They are carrying the table out of the backdoor with your head on a platter and setting you house on fire.
Let us kick the billionaires and politicians to the curb and let us build libraries and labor unions. Let us put a psychologist in every school and a public worker on every bridge. Let us create living-wage jobs for parents so that can find time to read books to their sons and daughters at night and give them a good healthy meal in the morning. Let us support kid and teachers.
Let us support Glenda Ritz and rebel against Pence, the state board, and the unelected CECI. Sign the petition to have the state board of ed. in Indiana be elected public officials now.