Friday, June 27, 2014

No. 000037 Jane Dueker Strikes Tony Messenger Out as Hypocrite on Three Pitches

Ms. Jane Dueker has a well deserved Saint Louis following as sports fan (and moderate Democrat), working off the Mound on principle.

She just struck out left wing radical Tony Messenger in three pitches:

Messenger's View: Disregard Inconvenient Laws

Messenger is a hypocrite in that he views the Missouri Constitution and laws as only applying to others, but when Constitutions or laws are an inconvenient obstacle to what he wants he is unhesitant in urging others to breach or disregard both. 

He is very happy, for example, with the Governor's veto of SB493 in this Fair or Foul video for the Post-Dispatch.

In the video Messenger attacks Missouri State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-14, for her vote in favor of SB493 because the bill opens the door for public money to be spent for tuition and costs at private schools.

In his veto message Governor Nixon wrote of Ms. Chappelle-Nadal's vote: 
Conference Committee Substitute for House Committee Substitute for Senate Committee Substitute for Senate Bills Nos. 493, 485, 495, 516, 534, 545, 595, 616 & 624 would authorize the expenditure of public funds for the tuition of students who transfer from an unaccredited school in an unaccredited district in St. Louis, St. Louis County and Jackson County to private, nonsectarian schools located in the students' district of residence. Although proponents of this provision claim that only local tax dollars would be expended and that they would be expended only if approved by the district's voters, no such vote would be required after a district has been unaccredited for three years. Either with or without a vote, the result would be the same-public money would be diverted to private schools, in clear violation of the Missouri Constitution Art. III, § 38(a). In addition, through its enactment of Conference Committee Substitute for House Committee Substitute for Senate Committee Substitute for Senate Bills Nos. 493,485, 495, 516, 534, 545, 595, 616 & 624, the General Assembly would extend this private school option without holding private schools responsible for how well they educate students. Unlike the accountability to taxpayers that locally elected school boards provide, this scheme for directing public funds to private schools would come with no such protection. Private schools do not have to answer to voters, their leadership does not have to stand for election or re-election, and their budgets are not transparent to allow public scrutiny. Accordingly, public funds should not be diverted to private schools.
In his Fair or Foul video Mr. Messenger also attacks Senator Chappelle-Nadal for a conflict of interest in both serving as a Senator and as a school board member for the University City School District.

This is a bizarre charge. For that to be true University City voters would have to have conflict of interest with themselves. Senators and school board directors are accountable to the small group, the public at large.

What Mr. Messenger really faults is that, wisely, Ms. Chappelle-Nadal does not want to make a bad situation worse by having underperforming Normandy students threaten the accreditation of University City's schools.

The Post has reported:

“I want to make sure that this district stays accredited,” she [Senator Chappelle-Nadal] said, according to the Post-Dispatch’s Jessica Bock.

Mr. Messenger apparently wants University City's school board to act in ways that will threaten that district's accreditation. 

Messenger's knowledge of the law.

In Mr. Messenger's video he shows sufficient skill with Google to find applicable state statutes when it suits his purpose.

Our question for Mr. Messenger:

Mr. Messenger can you please show us the state statute that permits either DESE or its new Normandy School District to pay tuition to University City or Francis Howell for Normandy students solely because they transferred in 2013.

Readers, don't hold your breath on a reply for Ms. Dueker has been doing a good job explaining that can only be done by the General Assembly by an appropriation bill or new and retroactive law in 2015. 

Mr. Messenger long ago blocked me on Twitter when I noted another of his radical ideas --- open schools districts in St. Louis County --- was derp.

Journalist can dish it out but cannot take it.

Ms. Dueker. Please keep on pitching.

Senator Chappelle-Nadal 

A few sentences on her performance as a senator is appropropriate. 

We think Senator Chappelle-Nadal is a hypocrite for even worse reasons than does Mr. Messenger. 

Her vote not to accept Normandy's students was an admission of what we all know. The problems in Normandy are not with the school district, the school board, or the teachers and lie little or at all with the students or parents.

Everytime Senator Chappelle-Nadal has said this is a school problem that can be solved at the school level she is not telling others what she, by her on actions, we now know she believes.

If University City's schools cannot turn around Normandy's students, the task before us is beyond what schools alone can accomplish.

Normandy is within the failing parts of a major urban area. It needs massive doses of economics for Democrats, especially a program that puts everyone fit to work to work.