Choose the lesser of two evils for education?
In Florida, both candidates for governor are definitely evils who are known for being part of the corporate dismantling public education. As a matter of fact, the Republican incumbent, Rick Scott, was not part of the Republican Party’s politically aligned candidates before his election in 2010. The Democratic Party’s candidate is the ex-Republican Florida Governor Charlie Crist.
Scott is relying on blatant lies. Crist is relying on public amnesia.
Why are these two men the choices Floridians are being given? They are connected to the same corporate interests but are two different brands that owe payback to different specific individuals who are all investors in the Education Industrial Complex. Different brands of high stakes testing, charters, vouchers, textbooks, teacher evaluation rating methods, corporate curricular control and more are what each supports.
What Scott and Crist say and what each chooses as a photo-op mean nothing.
What each has done is all that counts.
What are the records for what Scott and Crist have actually done to weaken and dismantle public education while harming teachers?
“Crist has accused Scott of shortchanging teachers, passing a historically large, $77 billion budget this year that included less money for Bright Futures scholarships and per-pupil spending compared with the heyday levels of Crist’s first year as governor.
This year’s budget devotes $18.9 billion in aid to classrooms, or $6,937 per pupil. Although that’s up $176 from last year, it still falls a bit short of the record $7,126 per student that Florida was spending in 2007, before the Great Recession.
‘You want people to get good jobs, but you won’t educate them,’ Crist said. ‘It’s nonsense.’
Despite Crist’s claim, his administration actually reduced per-pupil spending after 2007, and Scott and Republican lawmakers have been increasing it since the current governor’s second year in office.
Education has been an outsized focus so far for Scott’s campaign, which has spent $16 million on ads.
A new $2 million ad buy attacks Crist’s decision in 2007 to sign a bill allowing Florida’s top public research schools to begin charging higher ‘tuition differentials’ for students.”
– Orlando Sentinel
“Many education advocacy groups, including the Florida PTA, dislike the voucher program, arguing it sends taxpayer money to private, often religious, schools that do not have to meet the same requirements as public campuses. The PTA, some Democratic lawmakers and Orlando-based Fund Education Now were among those who had urged Scott to veto the contentious legislation.
The statewide teachers union opposed it, too.
‘This expansion of corporate vouchers comes at the expense of our underfunded public schools,’ said Joanne McCall, vice president of the Florida Education Association, in a statement.
‘Public schools face a strict accountability regimen that includes frequent testing, school grades and punitive actions for not meeting state mandates,’ she added. ‘But taxpayer dollars flowing to voucher schools require very little accountability and can in no way be compared to what is required for public schools. This unfair dual system must stop.’”
– Orlando Sentinel
As long as the two party system exists as corporate financed brands for the continuance of corporate welfare, the lunacy will continue. As long as people select the lesser of two evils, evil will be elected and go to even more and more extremes for corporate bottom lines rather than for the people who rely on them to educate our children and protect our best interests.
A third party vote and/or a no vote for a specific political offices are not wasted votes. Each political party carefully counts and examines the reason for those lost votes. Be part of their calculation or expect the lunacy to continue and worsen.
(By the way, out-of-state people still cannot understand why the majority of senior citizens on Medicare elected Scott as governor since he was the CEO of the corporation guilty of the largest Medicare fraud in America. One reason? He sold himself on TV, with his own vast wealth paying for ads, as a friend of the senior population. He simply rebranded himself.)