DICK BAYNTON: Let Freedom Ring

Dick Baynton

Both Democratic candidates for Virginia Governor recently spoke at a forum in Roanoke sponsored by the Virginia Education Association (VEA). These candidates seem to be using some of the same ingredients for success…or failure…as Bernie Sanders when he campaigned for president.

Ralph Northam, currently Virginia’s Lt. Governor and Tom Perriello, former one-term Congressman of the Fifth Congressional District have similar policies such as $15 per hour as the national minimum wage. Perriello also mentioned that there is fear regarding what the new Education Secretary will do to public schools by diverting funds to alternative training such as charter schools. Mr. Perriello advocates two free years of college for high school graduates.

Thomas Sowell, PhD, the revered conservative economist and writer has said, “One of the worst things for Blacks is the minimum wage.” He has also mentioned that public schools are run by teachers’ unions that protect the most incompetent members.

Apparently both Northam and Perriello think that our public schools are doing a fine job of educating our children. They should read the 2016 report of the results of the PISA data (Programme for International Student Assessment) sponsored by the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). The report was based on results of 540,000 students in 72 countries who were 15 years of age. The report shows that the U.S. was #40 in math, #25 in science and #24 in reading. By comparison, our Canadian neighbors were #10 in math, #7 in science and #3 in reading.

Apparently in our country many teachers are paid for their daily attendance from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM while other countries must pay their teachers for results (student performance). Or perhaps there is a link between teachers’ unions and the Democratic Party; since 1990, teachers unions have contributed $148 million to federal candidates of which 96% went to Democrats.

Apparently Mr. Perriello missed the reason why Donald Trump was elected President. The clear message sent by the voters was that we are sick and tired of career politicians. There should be no such thing as a professional career politician who bounces from one government job to another continuing to refresh their resume. The record of a person that has been on the government dole for 30 years is not the equivalent of 30 years experience but rather one year’s rhetoric repeated 30 times.

Mr. Perriello was elected to Representative from the 5th District of Virginia in 2008. It is worthwhile to note that many of the same people that elected him to office in 2008 also voted to replace him two years later. During the Roanoke forum, Mr. Perriello confirmed his current stand of resistance to all things Trump and his administration. This is the Democratic lockstep of Charles Schumer (D-NY), Richard Durbin, (D-IL) and thousands of other progressives: liberal Democrats parading around not as the loyal opposition but as‘the lions of losers who would prefer to see Mr. Trump any place but in the White House.

On the part of Mr. Perriello and all other liberal hacks who have adopted the notion that resistance is somehow good for our nation’s workers, voters and entrepreneurs; please look over your shoulders. Since 2009 the national debt has spiraled up to almost $20 trillion, our one-way deals with Iran and Cuba has left us and our friends at risk and empty-handed regarding any concrete benefits and our military has been shortchanged and moderated. Many of our politicians who become government fixtures have confused public service with public sophistry (fallacious argument, deceptive reasoning, subterfuge).

Let’s hope that in spite of the resistance to our present conservative government, the current administration is able to reverse and replace many of the abject failures of the past eight years. Let’s hope that we have more successful business people, professionals such as physicians, accountants and others who want to trade a few years of practicing their professions for a couple terms as local, state or national statesmanship (the word statesmanship is meant to be non-gender specific).

Let freedom ring, let self-determination be restored, find jobs for eager workers and those who have been living in the gloom of welfare and/or unemployment and inspire a new higher level of trust and confidence in our duly-elected leaders.