Conservative millionaire embarassed by high school algebra

Tony Bennett, school superintendent
Tony Bennett, school superintendent
(AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

The reality of teaching and evaluating the success of education doesn’t seem to be cooperating with the conservative message in Indianapolis.  Or at least, it’s not cooperating with rich conservatives. Must be that infamous liberal bias.

Here is the whole embarrassing story:

Tony Bennett was the superintendent of schools in Indianapolis, and got quite a reputation for being tough. “We need to hold schools accountable for bad performance!” he would say, which is a standard conservative rallying cry. Bennett implemented an A-F grading system for schools, and the grade that a school received would determine (among other things) how much state funding the school receives.  This is another reason conservatives love it: it’s a great way to take money away from schools that are already struggling. Because why would you help a school that is struggling?

 

Local Republican rich person, Christel DeHaan, likes to think of herself as caring about education. She cares so much that she actually runs a private school, Christel House. DeHaan also was a very large and influential donor to the school grading project, designed to crack down on all of the bad schools that are out there.

It all started to unravel when Christel House received a grade of C, primarily because the school’s test scores for algebra were so low.

What follows really isn’t Christel DeHann’s fault, although it’s potentially embarrassing for her. It’s actually much more the fault of school superintendent Tony Bennett, who apparently went completely off the rails with this news.

“Anything less than an A for Christel House compromises all of our accountability work!” Bennett wrote in an email, which naturally translates as, “We can’t give a bad grade to the rich person who is actually funding my pet project! I’ll be ruined… ruined!!!!

It should be noted that DeHann has given more than $2.8 million to Republicans since 1998, including $130,000 to Bennett and thousands more to state legislative leaders. So maybe Bennett was right to not want to make his owner angry.

So over the following months, Bennett pressured the grading director, Jon Gubera, on this issue, saying that anything less than an “A” for Christel House was just completely unacceptable, because it might imply that rich people aren’t pefect. Gradually, the formula for grading was revised several times, increasing from 2.9 to a 3.5.  When they discovered that this was still less than an “A”, according to the books, they had a conversation about whether they couldn’t just change the definition of “A”.

 

Gubera resigned shortly thereafer.

The entire thing, now opened up to the public and being reported by the AP, it’s looking very, very embarrassing for everyone involved.

And it’s all because of high school algebra….. well, and corruption.

The definition of liberal bias

In light of recent news, we have decided it is time to take a step back and address the core political issue of our time: what is the definition of liberal bias?

This question has been thrust into the spotlight by last week’s big news story: Zero conservatives selected to deliver 2013 commencement speeches at Ivy Leagues. This, of course, was the most important news event of last week. Moreover, the liberal bias in Ivy League universities provides a perfect case study to examine the bigger picture: the meaning of “liberal bias” in general.

What is a liberal?

First, it is important to define the term “liberal”. For this, we can look at the study of commencement speakers at top Universities done by the Young America’s Foundation (YAF). Of course, in this situation “study” means: they made a list of schools and commencement speakers, and then labelled each speaker as either liberal or conservative based on their own personal opinions.

It is these opinions that we can examine to discover the meaning of the word “liberal”.

Commencement Speaker Ideological Tilts
(click to enlarge)

For example:

Oprah Winfrey, Cory Booker, and Drew Houston are all labelled as “liberal” because they supported Barack Obama for President, and everyone knows that nobody who is moderate or independent has ever supported Barack Obama.

Mayor Bloomberg (party: Independent) is “liberal” because he is “socially liberal”, and everyone knows that the “we should give up the culture war nonsense and focus on taxes and deficits” schtick was, like, so three-years-ago.

Melinda Gates is “liberal”, according to this document, because of “contraceptives”.  The document is not clear as to whether using contraceptives makes one liberal, or believing in contraceptives makes one liberal, or what.  But either way, Melinda Gates is a liberal contraceptive type of gal.

Geoffrey Canada is “liberal” because he likes education, or possibly because he is socially active about liking education. Once again, the document is not totally clear.

So in conclusion: what does it mean to be a liberal?

It means you either support Barack Obama, or you support contraceptives, or you support education.  Especially, one can only assume, if you are socially active about it.

 

What does this tell us about liberal bias??

Now we know what it means to be liberal. What does it mean to have liberal bias?

Let’s take a look at the very objective and unbiased Fox43 article on the topic, posted last week. In that article, they say this: “YAF spokesman Adam Tragone told Campus Reform on Tuesday the list appears to reveal a larger trend of liberal bias occurring on these campuses.”

From there, they proceed to identify, point by point, several very concrete items of evidence that clearly demonstrate the larger trend of liberal bias:

1) “With all these sex talks at Yale, it seems like conservative values on these campuses are non-existent.”

Talking about sex is an inherent demonstration of liberal bias.  Obviously, if you want your institution of education to be politically unbiased, it must never talk about sex.

2) “96 percent of the faculty and staff at Ivy League schools who contributed to the 2012 presidential race donated to President Obama’s campaign.”

If too many people at a university donate to Barack Obama, then it is a sign that the university itself has liberal bias. Of course, there isn’t any actual evidence that personal financial donations influence the tenor of education at a university, but it feels like it should, doesn’t it?

3) “Of the top 100 universities listed by U.S. News and World Report, 62 chose to select liberal individuals to deliver commencement speeches, compared to 17 conservatives.”

62 is a lot bigger than 17, and that’s just not fair.  Of course, we’re not entirely certain how many conservatives were asked to be speakers at universities, or how many conservatives even wanted to be speakers at these universities. But that’s besides the point.  62 versus 17! Obviously there has to be some kind of bias in there somewhere.

 

Conclusion: How to be unbiased?

The only way to be totally unbiased is for everything to be 50-50. That’s just objective, mathematical fact.

In order to avoid being liberally biased, a university needs to make sure that it hires exactly 50% faculty who donate to liberal candidates and 50% faculty who donate to conservative candidates.  If it happens that the very best scientists and mathematicians in the world tend to donate to a liberal candidate, then that university should be obligated to hire second-rate mathematicians and scientists in order to fill their quota of conservative faculty members. (I know, that sounds a bit like affirmative action for conservatives; however, you know: shut up.)

In order to avoid being liberally biased, every time a University has a lecture on evolution, they must also have a lecture on creationism.  Every time they have a lecture on how sexism is bad, they must also have a lecture on how sexism is awesome. Every time they have a lecture on linear algebra, they must also have a lecture on how numbers can be whatever God wants them to be and therefore there is no point in learning math.

That’s just fair.

Until that happens, news stories like the one yesterday will always be able to be propped up as “evidence” of liberal bias!!!!

 

Related Article:   Poll Sampling has Liberal Bias!

 

This breakfast has a liberal bias!

This breakfast is liberal.

This breakfast is liberal.

Dennis Prager warns about the social, psychological, and moral dangers of this breakfast. We agree with him, but we also think he does not go far enough with his condemnations….

This appeared as a column on some unknown website a couple of days ago: a person named Dennis Prager explains the true visionary conservative position on schools providing breakfasts for poor children. To sum up, in his own words:

1. “A nutritious breakfast can be had for less than a dollar….” and therefore “it is inconceivable that there are homes in Los Angeles that cannot afford breakfast for their child. ”

2. Giving poor children nutritious breakfasts at schools “both enables and encourages irresponsible, uninterested, and incompetent parenting.”

3. Giving poor children nutritious breakfasts at schools “weaken the parent-child bond.”

4. “The free breakfast profoundly weakens young people’s character.”

To sum up, again in his own words: “These are the ways in which the Left has damaged children and families through free school breakfasts.”

 

These are amazing arguments, but we here at LiberalBias.com have to ask this:

…WHY are you limiting this argument only to school-provided breakfasts?

Consider this:

Textbooks!

Why are our socialist schools providing textbooks for free? A $20 textbook works out to less than 5 cents per day, so it’s inconceivable that anyone would not be able to afford it. If the school provides the textbook, then it just enables bad parents to not buy the books themselves. It also weakens the parent-child bond, because what is more bonding than a parent and child struggling together when they can’t afford textbooks for school?  Finally, giving textbooks to students weakens their character because it makes them assume that they will get free stuff from other people.

Therefore, allowing students to use textbooks without making them pay is destroying the character of our children.

 

Desks!

Why do our socialist schools allow students to sit at desks for free? Why are they not paying a rental fee for the year?  Isn’t this sending the wrong message? Doesn’t this just encourage dependency?  Doesn’t this just enable bad parenting, by letting the parents get away with not paying for the child to rent the desk?

It’s a moral disaster, ladies and gentlemen.

 

…and so on. You get the idea.  You can use this argument to basically demonize anything that schools provide.

So why don’t you, Dennis Prager?  You know you want to.  Go explain to the world that it’s destroying the character of our children that we let them use school desks without paying rent!  Go one: show off your glorious tea-party self!