Crazy secessionist Gov. Rick Perry (R-Tx.) is up to his old tricks again. A constant critic of the federal government, history and reality (which, to be fair, has a liberal bias), Perry took a bold stand this week against federal stimulus dollars for education. Seems his state was eligible for up to $700 million for the Race to the Top program, which “which will provide $4.35 billion in grants to states that take certain steps intended to raise academic standards, such as performance pay for teachers and principals, loosening caps on the number of charter schools, and building long-term student tracking systems.”
As one of the few remaining Texans who can do so, Perry picked up a pen and wrote a scathing letter to Education Sec. Arne Duncan:
In his letter, Perry said it would be “foolish” to accept the funds – arguing that it would too firmly tie his state’s hands on education.
“I will not commit Texas taxpayers to unfunded federal obligations or to the adoption of unproven, cost-prohibitive national curriculum standards and tests,” Perry wrote. “Texas is on the right path toward improved education.”
The right path, eh? How perfect and right pathy, you ask? Well, Texas is ranked 36th nationally in graduation rate, 49th in SAT scores and 50th (out of 50, right?) in percentage of the population with a high school diploma. Geez, when you look at it like that, you have to admit, Perry has a point. In fact, here’s his point:
We would be foolish and irresponsible to place our children’s future in the hands of unelected bureaucrats and special interest groups thousands of miles away in Washington, virtually eliminating parents’ participation in their children’s education.”
Indeed you would be. Imagine what kind of terrible things would happen if someone not from Texas started looking at your education system! Think about how terrible things would be!
To be fair, Texas does seem to have the situation on lock. There was a great (and by “great,” we mean incredibly terrifying) article in Washington Monthly a few weeks ago about the Evangelical anti-scientists who are in charge of writing the content of Texas’ text books. Here’s one of our favorite parts:
I don’t care what the educational political lobby and their allies on the left say,” [said Don McLeroy, a member of the Texas State Board of Education]. “Evolution is hooey.” This bled into a rant about American history. “The secular humanists may argue that we are a secular nation,” McLeroy said, jabbing his finger in the air for emphasis. “But we are a Christian nation founded on Christian principles. The way I evaluate history textbooks is first I see how they cover Christianity and Israel. Then I see how they treat Ronald Reagan—he needs to get credit for saving the world from communism and for the good economy over the last twenty years because he lowered taxes.”
Again, we can’t imagine why Texas’ education rankings are where they are! This has the looks of a well-oiled machine.
We kid Gov. Perry, of course. Sure he’s a favorite of the teabaggers and the fringe right, but he’s not always against stimulus dollars — he has some cognitive reasoning ability, you guys! In fact, just this week El Paso was proud to except federal dollars (not for education, though!). From the El Paso Times editorial board:
El Paso City Council did the right thing Tuesday when it approved spending $773,000 in federal stimulus money to buy 1,145 M-4 rifles.
Law-enforcement officers need to be as well-armed — or as closely as possible — as the criminals or terrorists they might encounter.
Indeed! Huzzah Texas and huzzah Rick Perry!