Katherine Gregg is becoming worried about the imbalance between government PR and journalists; maybe she should look to small-government advocates for allies.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy New Year, and whatever other politically incorrect well-wishes we can offer you this holiday season! This year, at the Center, we are grateful for our American values, and our ability to exercise them in liberty.
Karen Lee Ziner’s interview at Sin bakery with the former Donald Anderson (now transgender) and the former Mrs. Anderson raises questions that radical advocates should have to answer but exhibits the groundwork to set the conversation we’re permitted to have.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about Kilmartin’s tenure, Providence’s in-Fane-ity, the NEA v. Stenhouse, a former progressive representative-elect, the secretary’s strategy, and education.
For any organization to be successful, it needs leadership. The job of that leadership is to put forward a vision and a message that inspires people to come to that point of view. On a recent appearance I made on State of the State, I was asked about the state of the Rhode Island Republican Party.
While it is definitely not the most significant incident of the week Rhode Island, Education Commissioner Ken Wagner made a hugely symbolic gesture on Dan Yorke’s State of Mind show:
“There are coaches that believe you go into the locker room and you hold carrots until you get performance,” Yorke said to Wagner. “Then you have Bobby Knight who comes in and throws chairs and tells them the truth.
“I just want you to throw a chair once. I want people to understand that this isn’t funny, this isn’t acceptable and this isn’t true that our students don’t perform…” Yorke was then interrupted by Wagner responding to his statement.
Wagner then followed Yorke’s lead, stood up and threw his chair to the side.
“This isn’t funny, this isn’t acceptable, and it’s not true that our kids can’t do it, they can do it!” Wagner said.
The symbolism isn’t that Wagner’s going to shake things up, but that he does, in fact, think it’s funny. Imagine, for comparison, that Rhode Island’s murder rate were among the worst in the country and Yorke offered a similar statement to the attorney general. How would we react if he took the Wagner make-a-joke-out-of-it approach?
Along the same vein, the Rhode Island Foundation has made news this week by announcing its new initiative to bring together another discussion about education, so that unelected insiders have another forum through which to tell Rhode Islanders how a long-term plan could maybe improve results for students a generation from now:
Aside from [RI Foundation President Neil] Steinberg, other members of the committee include: Kathy Bendheim (Impact for Education); Elizabeth Burke Bryant (Rhode Island Kids Count); Victor Capellan (superintendent of Central Falls schools); Jeremy Chiappetta (Blackstone Valley Prep Mayoral Academy); Barbara Cottam (R.I. Board of Education); Tom DiPaolo (Rhode Island School Superintendents’ Association); David Driscoll (former Massachusetts commissioner of education); Tim Duffy (Rhode Island Association of School Committees); Frank Flynn (Rhode Island Federation of Teacher and Healthcare Professionals); Tom Giordano (Partnership for Rhode Island); Christopher Graham (Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce); Julie Horowitz (Feinstein School of Education and Human Development); Dolph Johnson (Hasbro); Susanna Loeb (Annenberg Institute for School Reform); Elizabeth Lynn (van Beuren Charitable Foundation); Keith Oliveira (R.I. League of Charter Schools); Pegah Rahmanian (Youth in Action); Don Rebello (Rhode Island Association of School Principals); Anthony Rolle (URI); Ken Wagner (R.I. education commissioner); and Robert Walsh (National Education Association Rhode Island).
Honestly, is there anybody on that list that doesn’t already have a seat at the table — whose views are not already represented in public debate about public policy in education? No. In typical Rhode Island fashion, this is a group of the same old special-interest representatives who (we should assume) are coming together to ensure that whatever reforms the state may try will not disrupt their sinecures too harshly.
In other words, it’s more wasted time and money. Rhode Islanders should brush this off as a distraction and mimic Wagner’s joke in all seriousness. Aren’t we tired of accepting failure, deceit, and mockery?
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about abysmal test scores, unions in elective office, the governor’s out-of-state focus, and a veto from the capital’s mayor.
On Tuesday, November 27, 2018, I attended the South Kingstown School Committee meeting. The recently elected Vice Chair, Sarah Markey, is also the Assistant Executive Director for the National Education Association of Rhode Island (NEARI). The vast majority of the employees working in the South Kingstown School Department are represented by this labor union.
Last year, Markey attempted to get appointed to a vacant school committee position.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about new and old buildings in Providence and accountability on voter rolls.
Health care and medicine in the United States can be expensive, but think of what we’re getting. The solution to our problems is more openness about costs and value and more-direct decision making, which is the opposite of single-payer and other big-government policies.
This year was a GREAT year for worker freedom across the country, and here in the Ocean State. Early in the summer, the SCOTUS decision in the historic Janus case determined that state and local governments are forbidden from forcing their employees to join unions as a condition of employment. The ruling means union leaders can no longer automatically plunder the pocketbooks of public employees to fund the unions’ political agendas.
In August, we launched our MyPayMySayRI.com campaign to educate public servants about their restored First Amendment rights.
But the insiders want to keep workers in the dark, and in the unions… at any cost.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about the Secretary of State’s actions with voter rules (and the Projo’s opinion on that) and Mattiello’s pending face-off with progressives, all tied in with speculation about the governor’s race in 2022.
A flawed understanding of separation of church and state is helping to erode our understanding of religious freedom, says Rev. Dave Aucoin.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about the predicament of House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello, the wave of progressives, and the predicament of the Rhode Island GOP.
Rhode Island is in desperate need of leadership that will step up and take the Progressive agenda head-on. For too long, the far-left has schemed to take the people of Rhode Island backwards. They want to move us further away from the pro-family and pro-business reforms our state desperately needs.
A bonus call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about the election results.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about the arrival of election day.
On Tuesday, you and I have a chance to make a big difference! I am personally encouraging you to vote… to exercise your precious right and to vote for candidates who support a pro-growth, pro-business, and pro-taxpayer agenda!
It’s been almost three decades since we have had balance of power in Rhode Island’s representation of U.S. Senators in Washington DC. Senator John Chafee(R) and Claiborne Pell(D), both highly regarded and respected across party lines, made Rhode Islanders proud at home and in Washington DC.
Time has come for Rhode Island to do it again.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello’s challenges, the Democrats (seeming) Trillo promotion, polls, and the state of play in the campaign.
My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, was about Trillo’s latest issue statements and the Providence Journal’s endorsements.
Many of our differences, even our semantic differences, come down to the question of whether everything aspect of our lives has to be aligned and associated with a political identity.
For my weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, this week, about the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races in Rhode Island.
Our education conundrum: We’ve layered too much mere stuff in the system and created too many incentives for people to advocate against reform.
At the Center, we believe that public workers deserve to know that they now have full freedom to decide whether or not it is in their best interest to pay union dues. That if they choose not to pay, these employees cannot be recriminated against by corrupt union officials.
However we feel about Joe Trillo or his recent behavior, the story of his 1975 altercation raises questions about the kind of society that we want to be.
The madness of our time may result from the general public’s “whoa, there” response to progressives who’ve forgotten the keys of their incremental strategy.
On the American campus, Catholics are forced out of their jobs in the name of presenting a diversity of ideas while hoax papers are published because academics really do believe that identity politics can tell us about the physical universe.
As part of the recent Providence Journal sponsored “Publick Occurrences” panel discussion at RI College, I’d like to share some thoughts I prepared, but did not have the chance to put forth. The event’s premise – “Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?” and the polarization of public discourse – leaves us two factors to consider: