Bluegrass Institute president Jim Waters will guest host for Matt Walsh on Lexington’s NewsRadio 630 WLAP-AM today from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT).
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A memo circulated among radical environmentalists and recently leaked to the public provides further evidence that the current administration’s executive orders and unilateral mandates to shut down the coal industry are not designed for the working man, or for Kentucky families.
The memo, which advises supporters on what language to use when pushing for these unprecedented policies, recommends discussing “modernizing and retooling power plants” but not to take credit for “net job increases.”
Hmmm….so it seems the obvious fact that using executive orders and draconian regulations to shut down entire industries – including Kentucky’s energy sector – won’t result in net job increases (what a surprise) is actually not lost on the current administration!
The memo goes on to advise greenies to avoid debating “the increase in electricity rates” and to “Instead pivot to health & clean air message.” Apparently, the same greenies also believe that the best way to dupe the general public into supporting Obama’s EPA is by using language such as “cutting carbon pollution from power plants” instead of “regulations to control greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.”
The fact that those pushing most strongly to shut down our energy sector realize – as shown through the leaked memo – that jobs will be lost and electricity rates will rise as a result should outrage Kentuckians.
School choice proponents received a breath of fresh air recently from a lawmaker speaking on the issue of compulsory school attendance.
Unfortunately, that lawmaker doesn’t serve the Bluegrass State.
Last week, Utah state senator Aaron Osmond spoke out against his state’s compulsory attendance laws, putting much of the blame on this mandate for public schools’ inefficiencies and unacceptable student performance. As Osmond noted, until the 20th century, a primary education was viewed as a privilege, not a prison sentence – and teachers were viewed as highly respected education professionals aiding in the parents’ ultimate responsibility of raising their children right.
“As a result [of compulsory education laws], our teachers and schools have been forced to become surrogate parents, expected to do everything from behavioral counseling, to providing adequate nutrition, to teaching sex education, as well as ensuring full college and career readiness.”
This gutsy statement from the first-term lawmaker comes fresh on the heels of Kentucky Senate Bill 96 which – now that 55% of schools in the commonwealth have signed on – forces students in any school district in the commonwealth to attend school until age 18. The obvious costs that will result are those associated with the hiring of more teachers, procuring new text books and resources, and the classroom costs of attempting to force a traditional education on students who’d strongly prefer to be elsewhere.
However, the more subtle costs are what will hurt young people most – and those are associated with the lost wages and on-the-job experience these teenagers could have received outside the classroom.
The governor and Kentucky Department of Education staffers are reveling about the pending mandate that all of the state’s school districts will have to adopt a minimum high school dropout age of 18 by the 2017-18 school year.
However, the high-performing Oldham County Public School District isn’t jumping on this bandwagon.
The Oldham Era reports, “OC schools in no rush to raise dropout age.”
Oldham County schools have several reasons for their hesitancy. One is that properly supporting an Age 18 policy requires expensive special programs. The law that requires the Age 18 policy change included no funding for such programs.
Another reason is that upscale Oldham County does not have many dropouts now. Even more interesting, the law would not change the current dropout picture very much. In Oldham County, out of 16 dropouts last year, 12 were already 18 years old and would be able to drop out even with the new policy in place.
That raises an uncomfortable possibility: Will Age 18 dropout restrictions simply run up school costs without significantly boosting high school graduation rates? After all, Age 18 really hasn’t performed well elsewhere.
Will Age 18 work better in Kentucky? Only time will provide the answer to that one.
It’s understandable why the KFC Yum! Center authority would accept the forgiveness of most of its debt to the Kentucky State Fair Board with the same enthusiasm demonstrated by the University of Louisville basketball team when the Cardinals returned the NCAA championship trophy to that arena this spring.
But that doesn’t make it right.
In a surprising move last May, the fair board forgave all but about $1.6 million of the arena authority’s $7.2 million obligation to the public agency.
Not that the arena doesn’t need all the help it can get.
“The pension system has been mismanaged, but it’s being corrected. … I believe most of our state representatives realize that more has to be done. … We have to change how we do things.” –Covington Mayor Sherry Carran on a recent “Kentucky Tonight” program
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