Anyway, looking for real ideas for how to make education spending more productive and promote better outcomes for students? One good place to start is my chapter on K-12 for the Independence Institute’s Citizens’ Budget. Or check out what Colorado school districts like Douglas County and Falcon 49 are up to. More on that later… [emphasis added]
For the most part, beautiful. Of course, being a news story, they rightfully reported the views of the opposition:
“I feel that the program will take money away from schools in a time when we desperately need money. We are cutting everything,” said Delana Maynes, with Taxpayers for Public Education. “You still have to pay teachers. You still have to turn on lights.”
Local FOX 31 Denver News and reporter Eli Stokols are to be commended for wanting to look at the effects of K-12 education spending cuts and innovative ideas for addressing the challenge. But the first edition of the televised series cries out for context and correction. First of all, it’s important to stress that yes, for the past couple years Colorado schools have been experiencing real budget cuts — after years of steady increases in per-pupil funding. And of course, the cuts will have an impact, albeit an impact that can be heavily mitigated and overcome in the long run by re-thinking how our school system does business.
That being said, the “crisis” trumpeted in Stokols’ piece is painted in a dubiously overstated light. It all begins with the following graphic that purports to show Colorado K-12 spending in a long-term decline:
ELECTION DAY NOTE: I will be providing Election Night coverage here, including quotes and photos as available. I am working with a collaborative of organizations on this project — including Independence Institute, People’s Press Collective, Complete Colorado, Who Said You Said, Mothers Against Debt and National Review Online. Go here for the relevant details (including a live video feed), and stay tuned for the best in Colorado grassroots conservative political coverage!
Update II, 12:30 PM:Minor tweak to the governor’s race predictions.
Following the most bizarre and unpredictable political campaign season in recent memory, I’ve decided to do the unthinkable and venture some predictions on results. Please note that I am venturing educated guesses with my head, not my heart. (If you want to get involved in some of the action yourself, Rossputin is hosting a general election prediction game.) Now without further ado, first the Colorado statewide races: (more…)
Only two of the top 10 moments came from U.S. House races, and my own Colorado 7th CD made the list. I’m not sure whether to be astounded or proud or embarrassed… or maybe just amused. I’ll save the satisfaction until Election Night.
Of course, it was the prolific National Review Colorado blogger Michael Sandoval who first brought attention to Ed Perlmutter’s slaphappy moment that well may go down as part of the closing chapter of the liberal Democrat’s Congressional career. Can you see the political wave a-comin’?
Update / Clarification:Michael Sandoval wasn’t the first to mention the slapping incident online. Lynn Bartels mentioned it at the end of her Denver Post story on the debate, but Sandoval was the first to post the video and feature the incident as a headline story. (Adam Schrager of 9News probably wrote about it, too, in the hours after the debate, but I can’t find a link.)
Why exactly is minor party-Republican gubernatorial candidate Dan Maes and his dwindling cadre of political backers trying to foist on Colorado a story that he bravely resisted efforts to buy him out of the race? It sure looks like the victim card is being played, unfortunately without the truth to back it up. The bottom line is that any proposed deal came from Maes and his allies, and that at all points Tom Tancredo and his closest advisers have communicated clearly that no job will be given to 10-point Dan Maes to buy him out of the race.
You can read on from the source to see that the claims Rossputin was involved in an attempt to buy Maes out of the race are utterly without merit. Rossputin wasn’t the only one Harrington tried to pursue about getting a deal for Dan Maes. (more…)
Complete Colorado’s Real Gubernatorial Genius is back with the third and final edition in the series, highlighting Republican candidate Dan Maes — Mr. I’m-Gonna-Be-Somebody-Someday. In my opinion, it will give you the purest laugh-out-loud experience of the trio:
In case you missed them, watch the earlier lampoons of Tom Tancredo and John Hickenlooper. Put together, the three minute-long Real Gubernatorial Genius clips will provide some needed Friday election season humorous relief.
Three weeks before Election Day. I can’t think of a better time to lighten the mood. It almost goes without saying that it’s healthy not to take political candidates (even those we may support) too seriously. In that spirit, the creative minds and voices at Complete Colorado present the first edition of “Real Gubernatorial Genius”:
Complete Colorado believes in equal opportunity satire (and if you’re not visiting the site regularly to stay updated on all the in-state news you need to know, now is the time to change that unfortunate oversight). Having heard this edition is just the first in the series, I look forward to the sequels featuring other candidates for governor.
It’s becoming a tradition. As of this evening, I have posted online my ballot with informed recommendations based on my personal inclinations, for whatever they are worth. The online ballot includes all Colorado statewide issues and one local issue, with a discussion of each, along with the candidates for whom I plan to vote (some of which include explanations).
Perhaps I should be flattered, but here’s hoping you don’t agree with me on every last point. Not that I take it to the extreme of one of the greatest conservative political philosophers of the 20th century, of whom William Buckley, Jr., once famously said: “As hard as it is to disagree with Harry Jaffa, it’s even harder to agree with him.” Even so, I hope you find it useful.
Colorado drivers, look around you. Okay, keep your eyes on the road. Of course. But if you’re motoring along highways throughout the state, you may see one of the 100 famous Who Said You Said billboards spread throughout Colorado (86 in the Denver metro area and 7 each in Fort Collins and Grand Junction):
The billboards invite citizens to “Stop Payment” on reckless ?spending by visiting WhoSaidYouSaid.com and send “Stop Payment”? notices to those officeholders. Federal spending has ballooned to $3.7 trillion, we have a $1 trillion budget deficit and are $13 trillion in debt.
In the most recent edition of The Enterprise Group Political Report (“At the Nexus of Business and Politics”) email newsletter, Andrew Boucher of Boucher Strategies in Fort Collins writes:
I’ll make three fearless predictions for November:
1. In the state legislative races, there will be at least one absolute stunner where a Republican no one has ever heard of knocks off an incumbent Democrat no one knew was in trouble.
2. Everything down-ballot is going to swing heavily towards the Republicans. (The less a voter has been paying attention to a particular race, the more likely they’ll default to the the national mood. Call it surfing the wave.)
3. Ben DeGrow is exactly right: “In this kind of generic political environment, in which most voters keenly see the adverse effects of excessive government spending, the opponents of Amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101 have their work cut out for them.”
I like these fearless predictions, and not just out of any sort of shameless self-promotional attempt to quote someone else quoting me. But especially reading the first of the three, I was inspired to chime in. Who could the surprise, out-of-the-blue Republican winner be? Let me forward some nominees (then you can discuss amongst yourselves): (more…)
…Hank Brown, a former U.S. senator and former University of Colorado president, withdrew his endorsement, setting off a domino effect not only among prominent Republicans, but Maes’ core, grassroots base.
Tea Party leaders across the state today said in often harsh terms that they wanted Maes to drop out….
The reliable in-state Magellan Strategies polling firm today released the results of last week’s voter interviews on Colorado statewide races. Taking the pulse of 954 likely voters, they found not surprisingly that John Hickenlooper has a wide lead over Republican Dan Maes (and an even wider lead over third-party Tom Tancredo) — though some small amount of Hick’s support may have been eroded in the intervening few days before the latest Rasmussen poll was taken.
But I’m more interested in bringing attention to the down-ticket races, which Magellan features in its top line results, as follows:
Republican Attorney General John Suthers holds a commanding 47-32 lead over Democratic challenger Stan Garnett
Democratic State Treasurer Cary Kennedy trails GOP challenger Walker Stapleton by the modest margin of 42-38
As is typical with these lower-profile, down-ticket races, a healthy share of undecideds (especially among unaffiliated voters) remains. But it seems more than reasonable at this point to say it’s a good year to run as a Republican in Colorado–unless your name is Dan Maes.
But a key reason why I wanted to bring attention to the down-ticket races is because the first head-to-head public survey of these races further belies the accuracy of the so-called Big Lie, er, Line on a certain local Lefty blog. It may be time for them to wake from their slumbers and update their results. In the meantime, please enjoy my amateur (and more accurate) attempt at election oddsmaking: (more…)
On Saturday night I watched in dread as Magglio Ordonez slid into home plate, was tagged out… but never got up. Quickly confirmed to have a fractured ankle, he had to be aided off the field. The number three hitter in my Detroit Tigers lineup, swinging the bat well again after a forgettable 2009, gone for 6 to 8 weeks (2B Carlos Guillen landed on the 15-day disabled list after the same game). A mere matter of days before the non-waiver trade deadline. A season that on the cusp of the All-Star break looked like it could be promising… you can just about write it off now.
A month ago relief pitching sensation Joel Zumaya broke his arm and finished his season while pitching against Minnesota. Less than a week ago third baseman Brandon Inge broke his hand on an inside pitch. With some key rookies providing unexpected contributions, it looked like the Tigers could weather the storm enough with a trade deadline pick-up to make the final piece. Hard to see how that can happen now, at least not without mortgaging away a much more promising future.
Dare I say it, but my Colorado Rockies haven’t looked much better of late. Ubaldo is off his game, the effect of Troy Tulowitzki being out of the lineup for weeks now taking its toll, and the post-break road trip couldn’t end soon enough. Too many holes in the lineup. Inconsistency from the bullpen. Can they catch enough fire to make up lost ground in the NL West race come September? I’m beginning to have my doubts.
For the Tigers and Rockies, if things continue to falter, there is always 2011. But need I go into the trainwreck-like spectacle that is the governor’s race in Colorado? “There’s always 2014….” (more…)