Month: March 2011

Those Mean Republicans: Why can’t everyone be sensitive, fair, and just raise taxes?

As a country, we don’t need a Department of Education. We don’t need the EPA to be as large and aggressive as it is. We shouldn’t have a large IRS organization. In fact, there are many government departments and programs that should have never happened, and now that we can see the cost of these government expansion programs, it’s time to correct those mistakes by ending them.

The reason I find the book Atlas Shrugged so revealing is that is was written in the 50’s, well before the rest of America saw trouble. So the perspective has truth to it because the book reads like a book written today, including the name of the bills that have been passed in the news lately. So it goes to say that the solutions to most of America’s problems are in that novel. It is the great American novel and should be revered as high, as or higher than Gone with the Wind, or Tom Sawyer.

It is true that there will be massive unemployment when all those government departments are ended. Those jobs should have never been filled by a government agency to begin with, so the pain of the transition will be immediate, and hard to swallow. But we have to swallow it. There isn’t a choice.

We can’t solve these problems on a national level without solving our financial problems on a local level. That is how we fix America, at the local level. Once that process is started, then we can tackle the problems at a national level. This is why school levies are so important. Schools teach generations of future American’s, and I think they’ve done a terrible job, because there are a lot of “other” social issues that have been thrown into that teaching. That’s a whole different topic that I’ve covered in various articles, so I won’t repeat it now. But the bottom line is that the cost of education is just too expensive.

Here Doc Thompson explains how property taxes are divided up and what they get spent on, much of which goes to schools.

As S.B.5 is about to be passed, union members are proclaiming that they’ll never vote for a Republican again. I say to them, so what. Who cares? The Republicans have an obligation to get our costs under control. Democrats have shown they don’t have the stomach for serious and needed cuts. They have made themselves virtually irrelevant. And if the country turns its back on the Republicans, they’ll face a third-party, which will really mess things up. But the country will not go back to what it was. One of two things will happen. We will go bankrupt. Or we’ll get leaner and meaner. There is not an option that allows for things to be as they were. The ignorant notion of overturning S.B.5 will be in the hands of the unions. If we give Ohio the tools to succeed and they overturn it, the blood will be on them, because it can never be said that we didn’t do our best to solve our problems.

When you hear the school board in Lebanon speak, or the unions of Lakota, they clearly don’t understand that money is not an infinite source. They truly believe, as Michael Moore does, that there is “plenty of cash out there. All we have to do is get it away from those that are sitting on it.” The fact that there are Americans who think such things are proof that our education system is completely broken and useless, because people aren’t learning what they should be.

If you’ve ever been on a camping trip, or a long motorcycle trip, you learn how to pack only what you need. I’ve been on such trips with people who don’t know how to pack correctly, and half-way through the trip they are complaining about being tired, or that the weight of their packing is hurting them. One of the great benefits in learning the skills of using only what you need is so that those same skills can be used in other parts of your life. The people who would be complaining on a hard camping trip are the same people who think government is in the business of creating jobs, and that’s why these people are miserable, because such thoughts go against nature.

How can you begin to explain anything to people like this?

It will be a painful process, but anybody who took a public sector job knew the risks, just like the person that is told not to pack too much in a backpack, but doesn’t listen and soon finds themselves in pain. They were warned.

The private sector will replace those jobs in time, but we have to deregulate our society so that those that create will create those jobs. Government only knows how to feed. Someone has to do the creating, and creators do not take government jobs. Those two things just don’t go together.

I can understand why public sector employees would be upset. They actually believed everything could continue and their good, well-paying jobs could continue forever. That’s what they were told anyway, just like the car salesman that sells a car he knows is prone to breakdowns, but says all the right things so the new owner doesn’t discover all those faults till later…..much later.

Look at these people. It must be terrible to not understand how things work. This video is from March 30th 2011.

Of course those people in public jobs are going to want to increase taxes to continue to fund their mistakes. But that’s not an option either, because taxes are a form of regulation, and regulation destroys creativity. And without creativity you have nothing, no jobs, no tax base, and no country.

So go ahead and get mad at the Republicans because they have to shut down the government. Get mad at the Republicans because they are passing S.B.5. Get mad at them for considering eliminating entire branches of government. Fantasize that Democrats will give all those things back to you. Because what they will give you if that happens is a third world country. America will no longer be a place where you can even hope to get a good paying job, let alone have a soft, union job full of benefits. You’ll elect yourself into the course we are currently on, if we don’t get control of it.

Here is your typical critic from the left.

So I’ll warn you now, don’t pack too heavy. Be ready for the long haul. Don’t look to government to create a job. Get out-of-the-way of those who create, and get ready to ask those people for a job, because that’s the only way. Wall Street is an easy villain for the weak. But without Wall Street, there is no creation, and ultimately no jobs. The motto that “we’re going to keep dancing as long as there’s music” is over. Because the music stopped, yet the people with their hand out are still dancing and showing that all along they never could hear anyway. If you want to know the truth, read a book, and I don’t mean the Communist Manifesto or The Coming Insurrection. Those are pamphlets for children. Drop the talking points designed my mindless, illiterate fools, because they did read those two pamphlets which are being accepted as a reality to our national demise.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

We Get Paid To Ask For More Money: With education, it’s all about marketing and spin

The day after the Lakota School Board chose to take a bit more time to analyze the deep cuts that must be met there was an article in the Enquirer about unions rushing to get contracts passed before S.B.5 becomes law. Listen to Doc Thompson discussing this issue on 700 WLW in the video below. It is good that Lakota did not get into a hurry to buckle under the union pressure. That would have been very irresponsible. However, most school districts, such as Lebanon went ahead and made deals with the unions. In Lebanon, Mark North, who makes $149,937 a year showed why he’s paid so much. He twisted the wording of his real intentions to proclaim that it was to the districts advantage to lock down their costs because S.B.5 would be challenged in court anyway. He gets paid to spin information like that so voters don’t see the real intentions, which is to secure their union contracts. But his actions, like a lot of other districts looking to pad the pockets of their union friends are revealed. Isn’t it nice to know where the loyalties of your elected administrators are? After all, it’s not their money. It’s yours………and before you say that Mark North is not an elected official, he is appointed by the school board who is elected by the public.

Here is the Enquirer article:

http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20110328/NEWS0108/103290330/Unions-employers-fearing-SB5-rush-contracts?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

Under the comments section of that article there were a couple of the comments by the clueless types of people who inhabit the extraordinary costs of those collective bargaining agreements.

office1698
7:38 PM on March 28, 2011
Can’t wait for the referendum to begin! Gov Kasich and his Tea Party supporters have yet to see the power of unions.

ucfcltymbr
7:41 PM on March 28, 2011

Enjoy your Tea Bag Party reign. It will not take long for the public to come to their sense and run you and your pals out of Columbus and DC.

What we’ve seen over the last couple of weeks is that the unions and administrators have been most certainly in bed with each other. In casual talk we all make jokes about it to ease the tension, but in the back of our minds we want to believe that the administrators, whether it is a school board, or a city council, that they are acting in our best interests. With the rush lately to pass all these contracts before S.B.5 becomes law, the villains reveal themselves.

Villains? Is that the right word? Is that too harsh?

No. It’s not. Villains, looters, feeders, predators, are all words that can be accurately used to describe what the pubic worker has become to the American economy. They are those things because they have become too greedy, demanded too much, and are now in a position to make demands to the people who pay them. They have become corrupt to the point of treason if the word treason was used in a traditional capacity.

What are the definitions of treason?
treason
n
1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) violation or betrayal of the allegiance that a person owes his sovereign or his country, esp by attempting to overthrow the government; high treason
2. any treachery or betrayal

The unions, their strikes, their political manipulation, their raw extortion of the public tax dollar have engaged in treason, and they do it openly without fear of prosecution.

In the Pulse Journal report of the Lakota meeting of Monday, March 28, 2011 Lakota Education Association President Sharon Mays proclaimed that teachers have “stepped up” in these times of financial crises. She said, “We’re taking on more teaching responsibility-more class preps-in order to give students more opportunities. Delaying a decision is not fair to teachers or students.”

What does any of that mean? How have the teachers “stepped up?” Everything she stated is undefined, actually it’s expected. As employees of the district, everything she said is expected. Sharon makes $81,156 per year and at that pay rate, everything she stated is expected from someone in that pay scale. Everything and more! Yet she phrases it as though she were actually doing the district a favor of some kind that teachers are working longer than 7.75 hours per day.

Everyone I know that makes over 50K per year, including executives, company presidents, plant managers, sales managers etc, put in approximately 10.5 hours per day. They may spend 7 to 8 hours at the office and another 2 to 3 hours at home. Teachers take home papers to grade and do some class prep work as would be expected. And for Sharon to make $81K per year, I’d expect her to be on call 24 hours a day and do at least 4 to 5 hours of work per day at home. That is the value of that type of salary.

Yet that’s not what’s happening. Teachers are being paid extraordinary amounts of money to teach, which I’ve said should be in a range of pay between 40K to 70K. Any more than that is taking advantage of the tax payer. And the manipulation that union leaders commit against the community is a form of treachery, especially in the face of the last two weeks leading up to the S.B.5 passage.

The plan of these unions is to push hard to get their contracts signed, buy time, and then get their signatures for a referendum into the state by July 7th so they can freeze the bill and get it overturned in the November election. They truly believe that the public will be just as naive as they’ve been in the past, that holding babies and campaigns of “it’s for the kids” will work. They are counting on the same old strong-arm tactics to.

But what is the aim of those tactics. Are they protecting our children? Are they working on behalf of the greater good of the community? Are they working on behalf of a school system that is facing major layoffs?

No. They want their money. They want their money even if it costs their fellow union members their jobs.

I am proud that the Lakota School Board took some extra time to cut their costs. I would hope that once S.B.5 comes into play that they make full use of it to drive their costs down before the July 7th freeze, due to the referendum attempt.

For those union members at the top of the pay scale protecting your inflated salaries, you should be ashamed of yourselves letting others suffer so that you can continue a wage level you know is outrageous, and to hide such a fact behind children is despicable. If I were on the school board I’d set a cap on teaching salaries and for those that didn’t want to live under that cap I’d point to the door. You’re lucky I’m not on the school board. I hope the people we have there now can muster up a similar level of responsibility to protect the community. Teachers that put money before kids are not the type of people I want in my district anyway. We’ll pay you well, but not foolishly, and it is that foolish level of pay that causes the deficit.

It might be wondered or even considered malicious for me to include these wages in this article. The reason is that I know of no other way to balance a budget. How can you balance a budget without looking at the money you spend? Then you have to consider what that money buys you and assess whether or not you are getting the value for what you spend. And I don’t see it. I don’t think the money we spend on government is worth it. I don’t think the money we spend on education is worth it, because I see very little light on behind the eyes of our youth. And I get the sense that public education is simply an organized crime-like syndicate and they are charging the tax payer for protection of services the public values. If lightweights in the mind think my view is extreme, too bad. Everybody thinks it. They just don’t talk about it in order to maintain the status-quo. When people like Ms. Mays, and Mr. North, who makes a lot more money than the average taxpayer, says we need to increase taxes in order to continue to pay their salaries, I say to them, you’re not doing your jobs if all you can do is ask for more money. North as a superintendent should have put the community in front of the union. Mays as head of her own union should have brought her members to the table to take a pay reduction to save the teachers at the bottom of the totem pole and fit into the community’s budget. That would have been the responsible thing, but they didn’t do those things.

This is a fight that is just starting. We’ll see how much courage each side has when the smoke clears. One thing is for sure, I will be reporting every detail of it, because only one side is right. There is no left or right here. There is only right or wrong.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

Creators and Feeders: The blueprint to save America is at your local book store

To those that want to know the answers to everything they are right in front of you. Literature, even though considered a harbor for the liberal arts degree, thus creating just another damn hippie to cast their unproductive concepts of love and peace in a world that is quite the opposite, literature is about truth ultimately. It is in the interpretation of that truth that everything gets distorted.

This is what happened in Thus Spoke Zarathustra, which I’ve proclaimed openly, is my favorite book. Zarathustra came down out of the mountains to help “mankind” understand that they can become “better” than just human beings. That’s where the Ubermensch idea comes from translated loosely into English as “the overman.” I learned about Nietzsche reading a lot of Joseph Campbell and was drawn to Nietzsche’s anti-institutional ideas in quotes that littered the massive body of work known as The Masks of God, which is a four volume set that Campbell spent many years writing based on the course he taught at Sara Lawrence College. One thing that Campbell was doing in his comparative mythology work was breaking down the differences between collective societies, such as you find in the east, and individual oriented societies that you find in the Occident, otherwise the west.

Where the west fails, and I’m thinking of Europe in this case is when they attempt to copy the east with their own culture. Somewhere in that attempt progressivism was created, and has been and will always be a disease to the creative power of the individual which propels all society.

There is a reason that you don’t find development in Africa except what the American or European mind brought to it. There is a reason that China spent many years as a stagnate country. They had periods of renaissance, one such period during our European dark ages was quite explosive, but fizzled out only to be reawakened once England handed Hong Kong back to the Chinese in 1999 which they then decided to adopt their culture around which has helped create the renaissance they are currently experiencing. But ultimately collectivism, especially progressivism, is an idea killer that hinders society in terrible ways for the trade-off of social security.

Two bodies of literature jump out at me exhibiting these collectivism warnings. One is A Brave New World, the other is Atlas Shrugged.

I wrote my own book, The Symposium of Justice in 2004, many years before I eventually read Atlas Shrugged myself. I was surprised that Ayn Rand had created similar characters and themes as I did, and she did it over 50 years ago. It might have something to do with the fact that we both studied Nietzsche at some length. I’m thinking particularly of the diner scene, which seemed awfully close to something I did without knowledge of Ayn’s work. The reason? Because truth is truth. There aren’t these degrees of negotiation along some political lines where there are extreme right-winged views or extreme left-winged views and somehow in government these views must be compromised into some stew of thought representing everyone as best as possible. People who seek the truth and find it, come to similar conclusions that cannot be escaped.

Because of my kids, I get to meet a lot of young people, and I must say they are a very disappointing group, bent and distorted around years of progressive thought. I blame progressivism for their foolish behavior, the desire to get “trashed” as they put it, where their right of passage to adulthood is the ability to drink and lose consciousness. That is a pathetic goal. These young people are a soft species robbed of honor because they have been taught to be entirely too sensitive for their own good, indecisive, insecure, raised in broken homes where step parents are a major factor, the whole situation is a mess, and progressive thought is to blame. The most recent catastrophe cast upon the fragile psyche of today’s youth is a thing called Facebook Depression. Listen to Doc Thompson of 700 WLW talk about this mysterious new progressive illness here.

One young boy that my youngest daughter knows lost his job for sleeping and playing on Facebook during his work hours. The kid is a video game wiz so I know there is intelligence there. But he can’t handle basics of reality. For him, it is acceptable to fall off the horse and let the horse keep on running down the path leaving him behind. I feel sorry for the kid because his fundamental belief system will prevent him from seeing the truth of the reasons he continues to fail. You could sit the kid down and scream at him and it would be no different from yelling at a dog that wants to please you, but can only wag its tail or drop its ears, completely unable to understand what you’re trying to tell it.

This kid is just a product of progressivism. I don’t blame him as much as I feel pity, much like I feel pity of an insect that falls into a swimming pool and struggles to free itself, hoping a kind hand lifts it from the water before it drowns. There are millions upon millions of these kids functioning in the world today, most of them completely lost by adults that are just as lost. This is the result of progressivism. Progressives seek a level of fairness that is not earned, but is perceived as a right, which it’s not.

The world is built by people who produce. It is very simple. There is no room for interpretation or negotiation on that simple fact. There are those who create. Then there are those that feed off that creation. The trouble always occurs when those that feed off creation take too much, or stand in the way of that creation. And the problem with modern society is that we don’t create enough, and those that do create keep it to themselves so they can avoid the problems with progressive thought.

Ayn Rand’s book has been out there for everyone to read for a great number of years. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel here. When a congressman or senator says to the Speaker of the House, “you need to abandon the tea party,” they just don’t get it. They are as foolish as the young person I told you about that think something is going to fall out of the sky and somehow fix his life if only he drinks one more drink, or goes to school and gets a degree for a job that doesn’t exist. It is only by getting down in the mud and fighting, and creating a new job that anything happens. The tea party knows what Ayn Rand knew 50 years ago, that progressive thought will kill your country.

She wrote Atlas Shrugged at a time that socialism hadn’t failed yet. In fact, there was a real threat that the Soviet Union might overtake the United States and its capitalist ways. When Ronald Reagan took the gloves off for a bit in the 80’s, we saw how rapidly capitalism could work, and how quickly socialism failed. Reagan’s strategy worked and proved Ayn Rand correct. Now, in hind-sight we have the benefit to go back to her work and admire how she arrived at truthful conclusions that are truly American in their context. The critics talk about the 80’s as a selfish age, which ironically is explored in great detail in Atlas Shrugged from all angles. Selfish or terms like it are cast from those in the progressive camp, from their distorted perspective corrupted by a sense of entitled fairness which does not exist anywhere in the universe because the laws of physics prohibit such a preposterous notion.

One element in that book that haunts me is the discovery of a new type of engine built by a genius that turns his back on the world in a way because he knows that the world as it is designed through progressive thought will reject new ideas because all new ideas threaten the security of people. This engine runs off strictly static electricity. It would never need fuel, oil or any other element. It would run along the same premise that lightning is generated in the atmosphere. The sickening thing about that bit of science fiction is that it is rooted in fact.

I’ve told you on these pages about regenerative medicine. I’ve told you about the Skycar. There are many, many inventions sitting on the shelf right now, that are being held back from society for all the reasons that progressivism fails, and that failure is outlined beautifully in the book Atlas Shrugged.

If you haven’t read it and you want to know the truth of what is going on in the world. If you want to understand why the welfare system fails, why government regulation is bad, and how the feeders in life, called “the looters” in the book are destructive read that book. Forget the mindless politicians. They are looters, every one of them. We must have some level of government in this country, but we don’t need it to be nearly as large as it is now.

It is true that there will be suffering. Those that are feeders off society will have a difficult time adapting, but this process must happen. It is not a matter of right or left. It is literally right or wrong.

Nature does not lie. The reason progressives believe that the earth is so vulnerable is because at their true nature, their mentality, they believe that they can change the world. They can engineer thought. They can engineer control of the whole world. But with nature, it is survival of the fittest. Progressives seek to change that. The reason, well not everyone can be the fittest, so in the pursuit of fairness the strong are attacked, and the strong are what everyone feeds off of. If you bring down the strong, there is nothing for anybody to feed off of. And government, especially a large, progressive government that is extremely expensive is that there are too many people feeding off the strong and society will crumble.

The key is that if you want to be a feeder, or a “looter,” then find yourself a creator that is a fair-minded person that appreciates your labor, because through competition, the creator in order to get a competitive edge over other creators will adapt to necessity, just as a stream will always run downhill and find the path of least resistance. If you want the benefit of that flow, put yourself in that path of least resistance and you’ll always be employed and of a benefit to a creator. And if you are a creator, create. Don’t attempt to be a feeder if you are a creator. You will only frustrate the hell out of yourself.

Every single politician in existence is a feeder. They are almost completely worthless. Yet they believe that they have some kind of dominion over everything that is created. And that is what needs to change. This is a belief given to us from Europe, which is a corrupt notion. It hasn’t worked for them, and it won’t work for us.

If you want to know how to do that, understand what needs to be done or how to fix what’s wrong with America and you want the truth go to your local book store and read Atlas Shrugged. The movie will be out soon also. But if you really want to soak up something that won’t lie to you, go get that book! Today! Then watch the news armed with the truth and see what you think about comments over the federal budget and what we can cut or should cut.

The cost if you don’t take a step to understand the truth, as a taxpayer, is that we will find ourselves in the situation that London found itself over the weekend, which is ridiculous and pathetic, headed up by people like the kid I described above, someone who thinks they are entitled to a good life and everything will magically fall in their lap without them doing anything to create that reality. Because they believe the great lie of progressive thought, which is an audacious naïveté of human influence seeking to alter the behavior of nature itself.

Literature, especially literature that has stood the test of time, will cast light where the darkness of progressivism resides like termites deep in the foundations of our existence. Figure out who you are and be it. That’s the first step because we’re not all equal in the world of Mother Nature and never will be.

If there is a book that can give America a blueprint on how to rebuild the country, it’s Atlas Shrugged. Read it word for word and understand it sentence by sentence.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

Looters of Lebanon: Mark North and the School Board Rob the Taxpayer!

CAUTION! THE VIDEO YOU SEE BELOW WILL MAKE YOU FURIOUS.

A great crime has been committed on the people of Lebanon, Ohio one that was defined by one of my favorite philosophers as “looters.” The term looters is aimed at those in government positions that seem to believe that their sole function of existence is to take from those that have, and give to those that haven’t. They are the reason government is thought to be corrupt at every level. They are the reason that congress cannot agree on the proper level of budget cuts which will most likely shut down the government on April 8th. Government in almost every category is in my mind simply looters that steal from us all in the form of taxes and mindlessly spend that money on programs that only make our nation worse and less competitive. Looters are the proper term for these types.

It is difficult to see the behavior clearly at a national or even a state level because the media does a good job of cleaning up the way information is presented. However, recently at a Lebanon School Board meeting Mark North, superintendent of the Lebanon School System and the entire School Board performed in front of the community the very kind of “looter” trick that has all but destroyed our nation, and they did it right out in open.
See it for yourself.

What happened here was the School Board during their public meeting called for a measure to go into an executive session, which was unprecedented, since this was a public meeting. Executive session means all parties involved go behind closed doors to discuss issues in secret. The reason was to approve their union contracts before the Ohio House of Representatives passes the new S.B.5 Bill and Governor Kasich signs it into law. As you can see the crowd wasn’t sure what to think of this move and this prompted Robert Waters to rise and question the board, which he had a right to do since the executive session was going to be done out of the public eye and was an extreme surprise to the audience.

When Mr. Waters asked the question, “How long will the board be in executive session,” it is the Superintendent Mr. North that says, “Sit and wait.” Then goes on to tell the board that Mr. Waters is not a member of the board and to sit down, as if Mr. Waters is simply a child in the school system.

The reason Mr. Waters needed to question the board in this way is that the Lebanon School Board under the guidance of Mark North made a deal with the education union prior this meeting to pass the contract so the terms would be grandfathered in prior to the S.B.5 passage. This was extremely irresponsible, because if the board and Mr. North had been truly representing the community of Lebanon, they would have attempted to hold off the passage of the contracts until after S.B.5 was passed so they would then have leverage to control their costs. But what they did is now guarantee that the step increases will occur which is driving the need for the levy attempt.

They openly stole money from Lebanon right in front of everyone’s faces when they didn’t need to. That is called looting, and if the people of Lebanon allow that kind of behavior to go on when it is so very obvious then our nation as a whole is doomed. You cannot expect the nation to operate right if you can’t solve problems like this in your own community.

I spent much of Saturday with the people fighting the Lebanon Levy. I was impressed with their organizational skills, and they appear poised to be able to raise the money needed to fight this levy. There are donors that are afraid of retaliation from the school system that are on the fence, but that’s normal. Courage will find them because the group I met was very good. There are several people in this group and they have many diverse skills and are very passionate about defending the taxpayers of Lebanon and truly keeping education aimed at children. I was surprised to learn that Mark North had classified these good people as “a bunch of angry parents.” It was upon hearing that comment that I decided to spend the day with them, because after seeing the video of the executive session I felt the Lebanon School Board was committing a crime against Ohio, not just the people in their district, and this is a fight that needed attention. Here’s their website.
http://www.lebanonschoolfacts.com/

I didn’t want to rush to judgment, I asked a man who knows Mark North, “what kind of man is he, is he a man of integrity, because what I’m hearing is that he’s not?”

The response I got was a tight-lipped one where the words were carefully selected. “Mark is a man who will do anything for the school system.”

I nodded knowingly. What that means is that Mark North sees his role as a protector of the school system, which means the unions that occupy it. Those unions are what drive up their labor costs, and it is those step increases that are making this levy in May needed, which they just passed in executive session when they didn’t have to. North like most government types is a looter looking to pad the pockets of those he’s directly responsible for at the expense of the people who pay him. In this case he’ll disguise the looting by telling the taxpayers that Lebanon was rated in the top 9.98% in achievement performance at the lowest costs per pupil. What he doesn’t say is that he could have avoided the upcoming levy by not cutting a deal with the unions, showing where his true loyalties are.

Looters only care about the taxpayer when it comes time to ask for money. They are the greediest of the greedy and are the epitome of what’s wrong with our country. I’ve seen a lot of bad conduct by public officials, but this incident is one of the worst, simply because it was done in the open with absolutely no respect for the community. They truly expected nobody to stand up and question their motives. Lucky for Lebanon, one guy did.

Anyone who votes for a levy increase in Lebanon is contributing to a crime and endorsing the behavior of looters like Mr. North. As long as those methods work, they will always disrespect you, and the bet is that the taxpayers of Lebanon will turn the other way and allow the looters to get away with a crime committed in front of everyone to see.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

All Health Care is a Scam: The Future Requires Courage and Offers Adventure

I can’t help but think of Atlas Shrugged, the great Ayn Rand novel, when I think of health care issues. Listen to Doc Thompson talk to Bob Hackett on 700 WLW about prescription drug addiction, Medicare fraud and various health care related topics.

In Atlas Shrugged Hank Rearden invents a new metal called Rearden Metal which is stronger, lighter and can be produced in larger quantities much cheaper than traditional steel. It’s so good that the government offers to buy him out to prevent the metal from hitting the market. Their reason is that the metal is too good, and will cost many steel workers their jobs because those companies producing traditional steel will not be able to compete. Sounds like farm subsidies to me, and countless other debacles the government has stuck its nose in to prevent pure completion which embraces technological advancement. Ayn Rand’s book is fiction but written over 50 years ago, it is all coming true almost exactly as she warned us. Case in point, look what the government did with General Motors.

Speaking of a car company like GM, a similar story could be told about Preston Tucker who invented the Tucker Car in the late 40’s. The government sent Senator Ferguson of Michigan, representing the big car companies of Detroit to go after Tucker with legalities, all of which were explored in Ayn’s book, but this wasn’t any fiction. Tucker nearly found himself in jail, and he lost his car company because his car was “too good.” The big three couldn’t keep up with Preston. So the government cut the knees out from under the innovator to protect the status quo. The result of this intervention was predicted by Ayn Rand and can be seen clearly now. The Motor City’s engine is dying. Detroit’s population shrank by more than 25% in the last decade, according to Census statistics reported in the New York Times. The city’s population fell to 713,777 in 2010, a drop of almost 240,000 residents. That’s 100,000 more than Katrina-ravaged New Orleans lost.

See the rest of the Detroit article here:

http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/daily-ticker/increbile-shrinking-city-detroit-becoming-ghost-town-20110323-095202-383.html

The government should have left Tucker alone and forced the car manufactures of Detroit to compete. But government did what it always does, it corrupted innovation and growth with an attempt to control the manufacturing process. And 60 years later, look at Detroit. But the jobs the senator and his friends were protecting lasted so those people could retire and go fishing for a couple of years, and that’s all that mattered to those people during that time. They didn’t care what would happen to Detroit a half a century later. They only thought of themselves.

Well, the same thing goes on in every industry, most notably the health care industry.

Health care now has its own version of Rearden Metal. It’s called regenerative tissue construction, and DNA engineering. See my article with videos about regenerative medicine here: Well worth your time in investigation.

We have arrived at a time and place where the human being can change what getting older means. We don’t have to take pharmaceutical medicine any longer, or at least we shouldn’t have to. Science has arrived to make such things seem barbaric. Growing new body parts and fixing all illnesses, genetic defects, and even cancer rests within genetic engineering, and will very, very soon be as common to our language as television is now, compared to a person that remembers life without television. The human body can repair itself. It built itself within a mother’s womb and can always regenerate all tissue at any time. Those secrets have begun to be unlocked.

Hospitals except for emergency surgery such as gun shots, car crashes and other traumas will become unnecessary. Doctor visits less needed. And prescription drugs including the thousands of drug stores all over the country are going to become useless.

There won’t be a need for health care such as what we have today. I sat in a recent meeting with my health care provider where they explained that the costs had gone up again this year. I wondered how long any of the people working in that industry think this can continue. The health care industry is where education and other public sector positions are at; at the maximum amount that society can or should be willing to pay for their services. The people working in these fields are in for a shock if they are not prepared to adapt to the changes.

Medicare is a corrupt system that costs all of us a treacherous amount of money.

This kind of thing has to stop. Obama Care will only exacerbate this kind of behavior. We need a lot less of this fraud and abuse, not more. And regenerative science will give us the option. It will allow us to extend the retirement age to perhaps 100 to 150 years old. It will solve our Social Security problems, and it will eliminate much of the expensive abuses that go on in the medical industry. But it will require human beings to think differently. And humans aren’t good at that. Look at these idiots in London today, just because the government wants to cut its costs, which is the responsible thing to do. People like this are parasites to innovation and are incredibly short-sighted and define why I can’t stand unions.

The great moral question of tomorrow will be a religious one, how long should we live? Do we have a right to manipulate the aging process? The answer is that of course we do, because we already do with prescription drugs, that we’ve all come to accept it as a reality. The next natural step in that scientific advancement is regenerative medicine. We have to look at it as the only moral solution to our current funding dilemma and it is the most humane way to deal with handicaps and debilitating illnesses.

Government already knows this, but they will not act on it until the money runs out. They will attempt to not become unpopular with voters working in the medical industry, nurses, doctors, insurance companies, health care providers, pharmacists, drug manufactures, etc. There is so much money generated in health care that government will cling to an old archaic system just to preserve jobs.

The medical industry as we know it will change. New jobs will be created, but they will be different roles, and there will be a lot of resistance to those changes. Drug manufactures will spend billions of dollars to prevent people from trusting new forms of medicine, just as steel lobbyists in Atlas Shrugged tried to keep a new metal from hitting the market. They don’t want the cost of competition. They, just like those in the education profession, cling to the old way of doing things, because their pensions and job security are tied to it.

I’ve changed professions 5 times in my adult life, because I’ve always adapted to change. I have never fallen in love with any position I’ve held, but always viewed them as a way to supply income to my family. I have never thought of retiring with a pension from a job. I will work as long as I feel like doing something for income. I have no intention to wither away into a gradual degradation of my body and spend the rest of my day’s fishing. In fact, I think any human being that views their life as an hourglass is a fool that sets unneeded psychological limits upon themselves. We live in an exciting age that should embrace the entrepreneurial spirit of free enterprise, the way America did leading up to the Civil War, and ironically the introduction of Marxism from Europe around the middle of the 19th century. Government needs to get out of the way of the safety business, the regulation business, the job creation business, in fact, it needs to get out of the way completely. Let everything that will fail, fail, and let innovation solve our problems.

I know what it’s like to lose a job. I’ve had periods of wealth, and periods of complete collapses. I can remember vividly days where I rode my bicycle to work 12 miles each way all year-long to save money on gas. And I’ve worked every job and odd job one can dream up from sales to janitorial work and everything in between. I’ve been on the bottom and have been on top. I know what I’m asking when I tell people to be bold, not to worry, and not to cling too tightly to the job you currently hold, because to do so prevents innovation which is necessary to the growth of our nation, and ultimately beneficial to our everyday lives. What is the point of arguing about retirement and pensions if such things aren’t needed in a future where life expectancy will double or triple within the next two decades? And to those of you reading this that think what I’m saying is science fiction, check it out for yourself. There is only one reason for us to continue dying at age 65 to 85, and that is to protect the jobs of those in the health care industry. That’s the only reason, because science is bringing us new options that many people would forgo in favor of security. Think what an absurd notion it is to consider that someone would trade a life of limitless adventure and unknown excitement for one that is certain to end about 10 years after retirement. Yet those in government that seek to suppress these new scientific discoveries will do just that, because they are short-sighted puppets to lobbies sent by pharmaceutical companies to stifle the creativity of our nation, and are themselves cancers to our inventive spirit.

I see those pharmaceutical lobbyists as corrosive and foolish as the typical labor union, which also cleaves like idiots to the mundane existence of life between the break bells and an eye toward retirement where they can finally live their own life, just as it is ending.

The question is do you have what it takes to say yes to life? Because in saying yes, you say you have the courage to reinvent yourself as many times as needed to always look with an eye toward the rising sun and leave the false security to those seeking sunsets.

And in saying yes, the world may crumble, but it will be rebuilt with something much better and stronger than would have otherwise been possible.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

Understanding Multiculturalism: The Good Guys are the Bad Guys, and the Bad Guys are the Good Guys.

Multiculturalism is not a bad thing; in fact it is quite healthy and has most been successful in the United States. There is nowhere on Earth that groups as divers as the Amish and the most gang inspired African-American’s can co-exist in relative harmony.

America is proof that multiculturalism can work in the world as mankind moves toward an identity more akin to Earthlings as opposed to the national identities and religions known today.

With that statement, I may sound like I’m endorsing something like what George Soros stands behind, an “open society.” Absolutely not! I am all for a one world order if that one world resembles the success of the United States as opposed to the communist leanings that much of the world openly embraces. And with that said, I do not support American imperialism either. I have no wish to impose American will on other countries. I would prefer to take the high ground and lead by example and let the success of the United States inspire the world to be a freer and fair place. It is America that is the only opportunity for such a concept in the world, without exception. So if you truly want to see rights for women, equality of races, or freedom of religion, then you will support American philosophy with open arms.

But………..there are enemies that speak of American Imperialism and the evil United States as if America is the worst invention ever to befall mankind. And shamefully, this does not come from just outside our country, but from within it with almost equal force. Our universities and aspects of public education have been open freeways of hypocritical anti-American sentiment that we’ve funded generously with public funds, as though we wish to fund our own destruction.

I have argued for years with the mindless type that just wants to take the blue pill and eat at fast food restaurants. They don’t want to be encumbered with thoughts of deep scrutiny, and it is a crime in itself, because America has enemies that wish to destroy it, so that certain cultures can reign without opposition in an infantile quest to conquer the world. The radical Muslim culture is one of those groups, which have such a terrestrial understanding of spirituality which they seek to impose on others, that they have made themselves dangerous to others. And they have captured popular opinion in such a way to make society paralyzed to criticism. In America we have freedom of religion, because what someone does to have an understanding with their God is their business. But not something that is to be used to manipulate society. The same people who complain about our nation’s courthouses displaying the Ten Commandments are those that are preaching that radical Islamic rule is beneficial to mankind. The same people who advocate the rights of women in the United States are the same that will support the treatment of women in a way that would be considered inhuman for a dog in the Muslim culture.

None of that is our business in America, only that we find the limits of their spiritual understanding to be naïve and foolish compared to our own experience, even though we’ve been too kind to speak such things out of fear of hurting their feelings. God forbid we do something so devastating to the radicals throughout the world as to judge them on their merits.

The other issue that has paralyzed us all is this guilt over slavery. America ended slavery. England brought it to the colonies and America ended it. That’s all anybody needs to know. There is still slavery in much of the world including in Africa. Sex slavery is a MAJOR problem in the world still, and who is speaking out for those poor kids and women kidnapped and used like useless rags destroying their lives before they even get started. Where is Jessie Jackson on that matter? Or Louis Farrakhan?

The answer is that the civil rights movement is a power grab. Americans have always been good people that loved freedom and is a place where religious tolerance and slavery could actually be discussed. We had our Salam Witch trials which we’ve as a culture rejected. As an American culture we’ve rejected slavery. America did those things on their own, nobody else. So the time to feel guilty about it is over.

The time to allow small minds to continue to ruin American culture is over.

I’ve always worn a cowboy hat, even when I was a kid. And of course that got me a lot of grief from progressive minded people that thought cowboy hats were out of fashion. The cowboy is a symbol of what America used to be, not what it was going to be, so I heard plenty of giggles and Lone Ranger jokes.

I’ve heard comments about my hat from a group of kids not too far away that thought I couldn’t hear, and I noticed that all the males of that group nearly had their pants around their knees, as they were trying to emulate the “rap” culture given to them from MTV. So they accept that their pants can be worn so far down that they have to hold their pants with their free hand to keep them from falling off. Yet a cowboy hat is something to belittle. That’s the progressive work that is firmly in place and has been for a number of years, and it’s misinformed. We can argue forever that there is a collective mind behind this progressive movement that is intent on the destruction of American value and the advancement of Islamic fundamentalism, African-American heritage, and pro-socialist agenda’s originating from Europe, and is a malicious attack on our country without guns, and is intentional. But that has been the result, intentional or not. The Black Panther voter intimidation case that the DOJ ignored is a perfect example of this. Recently Chick-fil-A came under attack by gay marriage groups, and we continue to hear absurd defense of the radical Muslim faith. There are too many wrongs being committed that are off limits by radicals that are ready to call people names for doing what is right. These people are no different than the spoiled child that has parents that pander to their every whim. No group in America or the world should be able to scream and cry and get an audience of any weight, yet we foolishly listen to these children to our own peril and allow ourselves to be paralyzed with guilt.

I feel no such guilt. I see that the intent behind these attempts are to destroy what has been built of the greatest nation on earth. And the reason is that the competition to catch up to that nation is just too steep for these lazy radicals that know their ideas cannot match that of American freedom. They also know that there are many that share their laziness so there is always an army of screaming, child-like minds ready to protest, because complaining is easier than action. Rioting is easier than building, so there is no shortage of those squeaking wheels desiring grease.

It is time to stop putting oil on those wheels and proclaiming them broken, beyond repair. We must not bend the greatness of our nation to these mindless radicals. It is the great responsibility of our age and it must be met with more than thought.

The world is counting on us to do so. The hope for the African village being tyrannized by tribes of terrorists seizing food supplies to be sold on the black market sent by America to that village is not in the UN. It is in American culture that spills over our boarder to those unfortunate places as inspiration. Or the 9 year old boy in the Philippians stolen while fishing for food and sold into the sex trade of some wealthy businessman seeking only some decadent act to satisfy his darkest fantasies. America is the only place on earth capable of doing anything about such terrible acts. They are the only place that will even discuss it! Pick a spot on the map and name your evil. The only defender on the planet capable of even addressing it is America, or the idea of America. And the enemies of America know it. That is why they attempt to paralyze America with self-conscious fear. And that must stop before it’s too late.

America may not be perfect, and it may take several decades to work out all the details of multicultural evolution, but no country has made as much ground as the United States have in the history of the world. The ones that point out those small imperfections are the same that wish to use imperfection for their own climb to power so that they can illusion their minds with authority.

While this battle takes place, I will continue to wear my cowboy hats proudly so the right kind of people know where I stand in the confusing lines of multicultural association.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

How To Beat A School Levy: The impact and future as seen through the eyes of Lakota

I received a request for interview by a reporter that sent me some prep questions that were quite good and well thought out. I thought I’d go ahead and post them here since I’ve received so many requests from other school districts, from people desiring to organize their own groups to defeat their school levies. The information I am sending to this reporter for her article, much of it won’t find its way to a short article anyway, can have immediate use to other anti-levy leaders that are looking for information to defeat the tax increases in their respective districts. The districts may be different, but the problems are all the same.

Interview Community Profile, West Chester

1. What was your involvement with the Lakota Levy?

a. I am currently the spokesman for No Lakota Levy.com which is a group of residents and businessmen living within the Lakota district opposed to further property tax increases. For many years we all worked separately from our various positions, but when it comes to the business of defeating a Lakota Levy we pull our resources together to finance the campaign portion of such an endeavor and run a unified campaign. I handle the media contacts and campaign strategy in conjunction with a core group of approximately 22 motivated members at the front of the effort, each handles specific obligations from data collection, legal needs, financing, and content design. My specific obligations were to collect all that information and project it through the website of nolakotalevy.com and other media outlets.

2. What is your main reason for not supporting the levy?

b. The only way to sustain the education budget at Lakota is to stop the inflating costs. Education is going to have to get leaner, not larger. School Choice is going to force competition, so Lakota must adapt if it hopes to continue to be a choice school for students moving to the district. Online classes are proving to be more efficient for some forms of education, such as foreign language and mathematics. Blind obedience to older forms of education are proving to be devastating to our national culture, so throwing more money at an average, or outdated system is not wise, and the teacher contracts that we are currently obliged to at Lakota are inflating the budget in an uncontrollable way, the average teacher makes over $62,000 per year and the step increase obligations are increasing that budget each year. Real estate movement has frozen as a result of the Housing Bubble crash of 2008 and taxes need to actually go down to attract business and residential growth to the area, not up. Passing a levy would only make this problem worse and far less attractive. Potential business development and residential expansion will move to Franklin, Trenton and Monroe if taxes continue to increase which is not the direction we want to go to in Liberty Twp and West Chester.

3. You say that to pass the levy it would just be putting a band-aid on a much larger problem. Is this problem the mismanagement of state funds in your opinion?

c. My opinion is that education has grown to expect too much funding. It has become used to a large bureaucratic system that funnels money without question under the umbrella of education and those dollars are not getting children the education they need. The band-aid is a term to that describes the levy increase is only to pay for an inflated budget driven by step increases from a teachers union that told the press they took a pay freeze, yet the budget needs continue to expand because of those step increases, so the statements to the press and community were very deceptive. Throwing more money at the situation will not improve the educational lives of the children in the community. In fact there is no evidence that more money will solve anything. What we need is competition introduced to all school districts, through programs like School Choice. This will force school systems like Lakota, and Mason, and all others to bring down their per-pupil costs which are currently hovering around 10K per student. That’s a ridiculous sum that as a society we cannot allow that cost per student to increase to 11K or 12K in the coming years. Those costs need to go in the other direction so we can sustain education far into the future. Not just till many of the district employees currently in the system reach retirement. Our concerns are for the health of the district. Not the current employees.

4. With the levies not passing, what effect do you think this has on the West Chester community?

d. Unfortunately in the short run busing has been cut, electives cut, lay-offs of some of the newer teachers, who probably shouldn’t have been cut because they were new and full of energy. Sports have been cut, but all these cuts are really cents on the dollar. They are intended to impact the community negatively in order to secure future funding, and that is an unfortunate game to play. The healthy aspect of not passing the levies is that it has helped create the need for a bill such as S.B.5 which will give our school board the ability to control its costs. One of the primary complaints I’ve heard from the school board is that there is very little they can actually do, because the union contract is so restrictive. That kind of restriction costs an enormous amount of money in compliance. So because of the failures of these levies, we have been able to get advancements of programs like School Choice, and S.B.5 which will allow our school board to continue to manage Lakota as a highly sought after school district. The most devastating event that could have happened in recent history is when the teachers union threatened to strike in 2008, which immediately drove up the labor costs within the Lakota School district, and this has had a very negative effect on real estate that is cautious of such high taxes and the ability of the school system to remain solvent. I have been asked, as many in the No Lakota Group have, why I don’t run for school board to help solve these problems. Well, when S.B.5 becomes law I can think of about 50 people right off the top of my head that would then be ready to help run the school district properly, businessmen that are successful in the West Chester area. They won’t do it now because the unions are a radical group showing no flexibility or understanding of fiscal responsibility. I personally would not deal with such people, and many of the people I know won’t either. What we can do at this phase is deny more money to a broken system. That forces them to live within a budget. The district really should look at lowering their 160 million dollar budget to something below 120 million. We’re not asking them to do that. We’re asking them to work with what they have without increased costs. Just under 100 students were added to the Lakota School System after 2009 because the housing market froze. That lack of growth occurred well before Lakota failed a levy. It is a direct result of a poor housing market, and extremely high taxes. More tax increases is an insane and treacherous path that will force a decline in what we’ve all worked hard to build in West Chester and Liberty Twp. We need to drive our costs down instead of up and by voting no we are forcing that discussion to take place. We’re not taking away their money. They are choosing to respond to the small cuts instead of getting their payroll under control. The same amount of money is still flowing in their direction. And that figure will go down if they continue to make Lakota appear to be a bad district for sports, busing cuts and electives, driving residents away which will further lower the taxable income the district receives. The district must be responsible, work with the budget they currently have while keeping Lakota a desirable district attractive to parents while using S.B.5 to get their costs in line the moment it is passed.

5, Do you think the education or school system reflects on a community?

e. No, that is a popular myth. The school system is a reflection of the community not the other way around. The kids that go to Lakota are good or above average because the parents that send those kids to school care about their kids. Whenever parents take an active role in their kids those kids will perform higher. The school system will be good because the people in the community are good. Money has nothing to do with it. Things are good or great because of the people involved. Paying people well does not make something good. It only says you appreciate the work they do and you pay them more money so that they won’t leave and go someplace else. Lakota was a good district when there were cows next to the school buildings and there was not air-conditioning, because the residents that were attracted to live in the district are good people, and they still are. Because of that long-standing success Lakota has attracted people from other places within the city. But these are the first type of people who will leave and turn their backs on the district in the crises we currently face, because they falsely believe that money is the key to success. It is not. Success is a state of mind. And because Lakota has good people it will remain a good district.

6. Do you think with the school levies not passing people will be discouraged from moving into the West Chester community?

f. I think some of the parents that are looking for a great school system with a foot half in half out will be, and those types of people are the first to leave when something goes wrong anyway. They cost our community more with their short-term investment hoping to get excellent schools for their kids on the backs of the tax payer while not making a long-term commitment to the community. They usually move away when their kids grow up and downsize. I don’t have much sympathy for those types of residents. As a community we need to build a strong community with residents that are willing to invest in our district and maintain that investment, and not sell at the first sign of trouble. To do that we need to lower taxes. We need to lower our overall operating budget and still provide the services that other districts have cut to maintain their costs. We need to think outside the box and not allow ourselves to sink in obligation to union contracts that are outdated and forced upon the community through coercion. Coercion is exactly what the strike threat in 2008 was and that behavior has no place in our district. There are a lot of great teachers out there and we want them in our schools. We’ll offer them good pay, a nice community to teach in, and pleasant students with parents that care. Those are all benefits. But we cannot afford over 400 personnel that make over 65K per year. That’s way too expensive. The teachers union should have recognized this and renegotiated their contracts to bring their costs in line with the community at large that is considered statewide to be affluent, yet average just around 50K per year per working professional.

7. What are some positive aspects for the community with the levy not passing?

g. It is forcing the discussing of how we can cut costs and still maintain the high level of service that Lakota has built a reputation around. If successful, Lakota will be one of the first school districts of its kind to remain excellent while reducing their budget, which is a process that must happen. It’s not an option. Once we bring costs down for education then West Chester can explore the possibility of lowering tax rates and attracting growth back to the region from the imposing tax rates that we are currently experiencing. This should be the first desire of the school board, to provide a quality education and to do so within the allocated budget. Not passing the levy has stopped the blind obedience to union step increases by exposing them for what they truly are.

8. With the levy not passing, do you think Lakota schools are cutting appropriate aspects to fit with their budget?

H. Absolutely not. They should not have cut busing. That is less than 3% of the total budget. They should not have cut sports. Sports are less than busing as far as budget significance. They should not have laid-off any teachers. They should not have cancelled electives before they explored reducing their inflated labor costs. All teachers with tenure are not worth 65K per year. If we reduced overall payroll by 30% Lakota could have saved nearly 30 million dollars which more than solves the budget problems. But making such decisions requires true management understanding and making tough decisions, which are unpleasant, especially with a teachers union that is very contentious. After all, it was just 2008 that they flooded the school board meeting in October and threatened to strike. Once S.B.5 is passed, teachers will not be able to extort more money with such manipulative methods that are destructive to the community at large. If those employees seeking unreasonable sums of money wish to teach someplace else, they are free to leave. But they will not be able to strike and stop work hurting our children in the process. The problem starts when we have superintendents like Mike Taylor that feed the teachers union with comments saying “I don’t think teachers make enough money,” this coming from a former teacher himself that has obviously lost touch with the cost value of services in the private sector. The superintendent, reports to the school board. The school board reports to the community. All the teachers report to all above and what has been forgotten is who the manager of funds is. It is not the teachers unions that threaten a community with striking in order to drive up their labor costs. It is the community itself that has had to deny funds in order to stop the excessive bleeding of tax payer dollars that has been corrosive to further development of our area out of sheer greed. No, the cuts have not been made in the proper place. A real manager understands that the excessively expensive employees are better off to go someplace else while the hungry, appreciative employees that are in the business for all the right reasons come out of college every year and are there for us to hire. Labor is not in shortage so the advantage goes to the manager, the community. Our school board will need to begin thinking like managers of the community’s money instead of trying to hold back a wall of threats by a teacher’s union that wants more than any community should ever be expected to pay.

9. Is there anything else you would like to add?

I. It is unfortunate that the perception that passing a school levy is actually good for kids. This was created by union marketing and has no basis in reality, absolutely zero. What is good for our children and our communities is competition and options. The current level of school funding at 10K per student is too much and relies on broken models of tax collection from unconstitutional property tax acquisition. It is my conclusion after watching the behavior of education costs for over a decade closely and fighting 6 school levies that the union influence has been detrimental to community management of school district costs. The trend in the future will be less funding from the state so more finance dependency will have to come from the local communities all over Ohio. That means that the teachers unions will have to either become much more accommodating and realistic or must be eliminated completely in favor of a system dictated strictly off competition. For myself, I simply don’t want a single dollar of my tax money going to union activity; because I do not, or have ever support them. I think they are bad and devastating to the American economy and I think it’s the wrong kind of thing for any children to be exposed to. I’d personally like to see children striving to be much more self-reliant and competitive, which I don’t see happening in public education. But that aside, it is the costs that everyone in the community must consider, personal issues aside. And it is labor costs that are the most extraordinary part of the budget that must be handled. This should not be a difficult concept for tax payers to understand. This is exactly why sports teams have salary caps, so a team cannot spend above a maximum set budget. School systems need to have a funding cap that the community establishes and the school board must figure out how to live within that cap. For Lakota that number is somewhere between 150 million and 160 million, which is a lot of money to spend on educating 18,500 students. If that means Lakota has to drive the costs down to 7K per pupil or even 6K per pupil, then that’s what the district must do, and still meet the excellent rating of the community. If they refuse to provide this service, then School Choice will be implemented and parents can send their kids to Mason, or Little Miami, or Fairfield in order to get the services they want as parents. This is the reality that is arriving, and it is expected that Lakota will embrace this challenge and emerge as a leader, because failure is not an option. And neither is higher taxes. If they can’t think out of the box to drive down their costs, then they need to step aside so people who do think this way can take control and get the budget under control.

Now, to support some of what I put down here I point you dear reader into the direction of two articles. These two articles describe the problem of public school from two angles, but centering on a common theme. Public school has a monopoly over education, where it shouldn’t, and that monopoly exists to protect the financial structure of its employees and nothing else. If we ever hope to truly educate our children properly we will eliminate this monopoly in favor of real, competitive education that has genuine value and a benefit for the communities that support it.

______________________________________________________________________________

 

New Report Shows Vouchers Benefit Public
and Private School Students

INDIANAPOLIS — A new report by the Foundation for Educational Choice finds that out of the 10 “gold standard” studies examining school voucher programs throughout the nation, nine showed that vouchers contributed to the academic improvements for students who use them.
The report also reviewed all 19 empirical studies on how vouchers affect academic performance in the public school system, finding that 18 of these studies show vouchers improved public schools.

“A Win-Win Solution: The Empirical Evidence on School Vouchers” reviews the studies spanning 20 years, including some recent ones. The empirical research consistently finds school voucher programs have improved the academic achievement of both the students who transferred to private schools and those who remained in public schools.

The research, by Greg Forster, a senior fellow with The Foundation, examines randomized experimental studies and other high-quality empirical studies evaluating school voucher programs conducted by researchers at Harvard University, Stanford University, Cornell University, Princeton University and the Federal Reserve Bank among other respected research institutions.

Forster, a senior fellow with The Foundation, says that test scores and graduation rates would have improved more dramatically if the voucher programs were offered to all students and not restricted based on income and other demographic factors, or capped to a certain number of participants.

“We are seeing some benefits thanks to vouchers, but we would see much more improvement with much more choice,” Forster said. “The more competition, the more pressure there would be to improve public education. With a lot more choice you will likely get improvements on a much broader scale.”

There are 26 school choice programs in 16 states and Washington, D.C. The first limited voucher program launched in Milwaukee in 1990. More than 190,000 students nationwide use public funds to attend the private school of their choice.
“Choice works,” said Robert Enlow, President and CEO of The Foundation. “We have known that for a while now. This review of all the research underscores it. What we need now is more choice for more kids to achieve more success.”
About the Foundation for Educational Choice

The Foundation for Educational Choice is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and nonpartisan organization, solely dedicated to advancing Milton and Rose Friedman’s vision of school choice for all children. First established as the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation in 1996, the foundation continues to promote school choice as the most effective and equitable way to improve the quality of K-12 education in America. The foundation is dedicated to research, education, and outreach on the vital issues and implications related to choice and competition in K-12 education

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NH Supreme Court: homeschooled girl must go to public school against mom’s wishes
BY JOHN-HENRY WESTEN

CONCORD, NH, March 17, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The New Hampshire Supreme Court upheld a lower court order Wednesday that sided with the father of a homeschooled student and forced her into a government-run school against her Christian mother’s wishes.

The court made clear that it was not addressing larger religious liberty and homeschooling concerns and was basing its ruling only on the narrow and specific facts of the case.

“While [the case] involves home schooling, it is not about the merits of home verses public schooling,” stated the justices in their opinion.

“We affirm the decision on the narrow basis that it represents a sustainable exercise of the trial court’s discretion to determine the educational placement that is in daughter’s best interests.”

The court heard oral argument in the case on Jan. 6.

Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) attorney John Anthony Simmons, who represented the mother, who is divorced from the father, argued that the burden of proof was on the father to prove harm in order to change the schooling arrangement. Because no harm was demonstrated and the girl was acknowledged to be academically superior and socially interactive, even by the court, Simmons argued that the homeschooling arrangement should not have been changed.

However, in the original order issued in July 2009, Judge Lucinda V. Sadler reasoned that the girl’s “vigorous defense of her religious beliefs to [her] counselor suggests strongly that she has not had the opportunity to seriously consider any other point of view.”

“Parents have a fundamental right to make educational choices for their children,” responded Simmons. “Courts can settle disputes, but they cannot legitimately order a child into a government-run school on the basis that her religious views need to be mixed with other views. That’s precisely what the lower court admitted it was doing.”

“The lower court held the Christian faith of this mother and daughter against them,” Simmons said. “Unfortunately, the Supreme Court bypassed this issue and wrote this off as a ‘parent versus parent’ issue without recognizing the very real underlying threat to religious liberty.”

Nevertheless, ADF Senior Counsel Joseph Infranco said that the law firm appreciates the Supreme Court’s choice to limit “its decision to the facts of this case,” which should ensure that the decision “cannot be used as a battering-ram against religious liberty or homeschooling.”

The “ADF will be vigilant to make sure that it’s not,” he concluded.

“We are disappointed that this young girl is being forced to attend a public school over her mother’s, and reportedly her own, wishes,” said Michael Donnelly, the attorney for the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). HSLDA had submitted an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in the case.

“However, the NH Supreme Court confined its ruling to this case and these facts avoiding any collateral impact on the rights of other parents in New Hampshire who homeschool their children,” he continued. “While the lower court’s decision could have been read to create a presumption in favor of public education over homeschooling, the court emphatically rejected this notion.”

Rich Hoffman

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