Eber: Identity politics a recipe for subverting democracy

We have all known the National Lawyers Guild since the late 1940’s when the House UnAmerican Activities Committee (HUAC) declared it a Communist Front Group.  This group is far to the Left of the Progressive movement.  Yet, as this article shows, the values of the NLG have been adopted by the Progressive movement and the Democrat Party.  Did you know that the California Democrat Party State organization has identity politics requirements for those appointing members of the committee—based on orientation, sex, color, etc.

The NLG Presenter Representation Policy is:  https://www.nlg.org/2017-workshops-and-panels/

  • More than half the program presenters should be women or transgender
  • More than half the program presenters should be persons of color
  • At least one person on the program should be a legal worker or organizer who is not necessarily the client in a case, but rather a non-lawyer conducting legal/political/community work on the issue
  • Please include law students, persons with disabilities, and persons of all sexual orientations and gender identities.”

No, qualifications do not count.  Experience, skill, ability does not count.  The first priority for the radical group is division and identity, not knowledge.  No wonder they are racist, sexist, bigoted—this is the KKK of the Left.  If this was the 1840’s they would be members of the “Know Nothing Party”.  Leading members.

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Identity politics a recipe for subverting democracy by Richard Eber

 by Richard Eber, California Political News and Views,  7/21/17

Presenter Representation Requirements for National Lawyers Guild (NLG)

(As taken from their web site)

As you organize your workshop, please be aware that the NLG works to prioritize people from communities underrepresented in the legal profession and targeted by law enforcement (eg. people with disabilities, people of color, LGBTQI people, and indigenous people). This policy is NOT a technical requirement. It is a mandate. We strive to be an organization committed to anti-oppression principles and practices and expect everyone to do their part in this ongoing process.

The NLG Presenter Representation Policy is:

  • More than half the program presenters should be women or transgender
  • More than half the program presenters should be persons of color
  • At least one person on the program should be a legal worker or organizer who is not necessarily the client in a case, but rather a non-lawyer conducting legal/political/community work on the issue
  • Please include law students, persons with disabilities, and persons of all sexual orientations and gender identities.

When you are asked by the convention committee to specify the program and speakers, you should identify how they fit into the representation requirements. We strive to offer convention programming that is as inclusive as possible

At first glance reviewing the so called “representation criteria” for this radical attorney’s group, it would appear to be a joke. Who in their right minds would come up with a policy that puts more emphasis on sexual preferences, skin color, race, disabilities, and gender, than the ability of to achieve recognition based upon merit?

Unfortunately, all of this is true. The NLG is completely “Blinded by the Light” in their quest to “out progressive” the most leftist of liberals.  This is identity politics at its best or perhaps better described as affirmative action and tokenism on steroids.

So called identity politics has been with us for years and has been a mainstay of the Democratic Party since the Clinton administration.  This phenomenon has been defined as a tendency for people of a particular religion, race, social background, etc., to form exclusive political alliances, moving away from traditional broad-based party politics.

This is what Hillary did in the 2016 trying to pander to environmentalists, women, the LBGT community, racial minorities, and labor union to form a coalition to beat the evil empire forces of Donald Trump.  She thought promoting income redistribution and social equality would be enough to comfortably win the election.  After all, experts believed identity politics represented over 70% of the electorate.

As we all know, (but not everyone will accept) Hillary Clinton and her followers, led by political pundits, were proven to be wrong.  Many Americans, including a large number of voters who felt intimidated by the press and social media, were not ready to turn over their futures to the progressive team. As it turned out identity politics was defeated by family oriented folks who desire a quality job, prosperity, and individual freedom that the Democrats seemed to shun.

Make America Great Again resonated better with voters than trying to be PC making decisions on winners and losers in our society. The silent majority rejected the shallow principles identity politics offered. What surprised the Democrats in 2016 was how easy it was for individuals from all walks of life to see through their bigoted sense of reality.

How could it be that those who pushed the same policies of the NLG could be so narrow minded and against the concept of American exceptionalism?  Look at what they said about those they wanted to give and receive awards.  By utilizing criteria that eliminated the factors of “merit” and hard work, the group has ignored the values our society has embraced since its inception.

In the 2016 election, voters were not ready to give out the keys to the kingdom to a bunch of leftist zealots who really believed the concept of “No Child left ahead” and throwing the spirit of Horatio Alger on the scrap heap of life.  Instead of understanding such basic concepts, so called Democratic Leaders seem to be content claiming the Russia stole the election and that Donald Trump did not legitimately defeat them.

Such a strategy is a big mistake, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer with their smile less “ain’t it awful” routine are doing a poor job of trying to lure “decline to state-undecided” voters that left the party from being welcomed back in the so called  “big tent” with the rest of the donkey’s.

Instead, we are seeing just the opposite with the current Queen of Division Senator Elizabeth Warren leading the way with her Identity Politics agenda.  It promises social justice with a heavy dose of increased government involvement in people’s lives to achieve these goals.

But wait there’s more! Freshman California Senator Kamala Harris is now considered to be the Princess in waiting in the Identify Politics Court of Public Opinion.  By virtue of being rude to male counterparts in Senate hearings and placing a higher priority on LGBT personal policies in selecting the CIA Director, (as opposed to dealing with terrorists) Harris is considered to be a serious candidate to be a VP running mate on the Democratic slate in 2020.  In fact she is considering a run for President.

Along with this, California with its complete domination of Democratic office holders is considered to be a major player in leading the Democrats back to the White House… If this progressive day dream is to be achieved, the young generation of political leaders in California will have to present a more palatable program than the present Sanctuary City, pro gun control, Cap and Trade and identity politics, in a PC culture where social justice is made the rule of law.

This is a tough sell. According to Melissa Bachelor Warnke, in an op end in the L.A. Times “Too often, the progressive movement has made the curious feel stupid, or the less liberal feel shunned. This is a mistake we pay for dearly. If we are going to strengthen the reach of the progressive movement, we must broaden our conception of inclusiveness rather than flatten its dimensions.”   http://www.latimes.com/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-identity-politics-trump-election-20161123-story.html

Meanwhile back on the ranch, all we as conservatives can do is await the next move by Jerry Brown, Gavin Newsom, Kevin De Leon,  and  the rest of the gang in Sacramento to impose their next progressive stink bomb on the rest of the state.

Will it be higher taxes, removing local control on urban planning, failing to  solve the public pension crisis, trying usurp power from the Federal Government with Sanctuary city legislation,  increase workers comp costs,  remove school  choice, weaken law enforcement, or an endless list of government overreach schemes? Only the next two years will tell.

At the same time I am certain the dummies at the National Lawyers Guild will be debating who is the most suitable person from their ranks to represent them. Currently, the over/under choice in  the group to secure this designation is a blind, indigenous, Gay, part African American, transgender legal worker with at least 2 ex husbands and/or wives in their resume.

Welcome to the wonderful world of identity politics where anyone who has a light complexion is put in the back of the bus!

Feds Spend $224,999 on ‘Clean Water’ Video Game

The Obama holdovers are spending your money on the direct indoctrination of little children.  No longer do they worry about scams, phony science—spend and like Goebbels, the children will believe.  In this case they are using video games ot lobby to their version of “clean water”.

“The National Institutes of Health is spending over $200,000 on a video game about clean water.

The computer game will help children “right the environmental wrongs” of a fictional town. A grant for the project was awarded last month to Meadowlark Science and Education, a company that makes STEM video games in Missoula, Mont.

The target audience of the new environmental health video game is 5th and 6th graders, who will use the game to sharpen their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math skills while increasing their “awareness of the importance of clean water.”

The National Institute for help is violating the law—they need to register as a lobbyist.  They are using tax dollars to mislead and miseducate our children.  When will President Trump be able to veto this abuse of children?

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Feds Spend $224,999 on ‘Clean Water’ Video Game

Children can ‘right environmental wrongs’ of fictional town

BY: Elizabeth Harrington, Washington Free Beacon,  7/17/17
The National Institutes of Health is spending over $200,000 on a video game about clean water.

The computer game will help children “right the environmental wrongs” of a fictional town. A grant for the project was awarded last month to Meadowlark Science and Education, a company that makes STEM video games in Missoula, Mont.

The target audience of the new environmental health video game is 5th and 6th graders, who will use the game to sharpen their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math skills while increasing their “awareness of the importance of clean water.”

“Improving STEM-focused curriculum is a primary objective of the current U.S. administration and is crucial for ensuring that upcoming generations receive the training and skills necessary to compete in the existing global economy,” according to the grant for the project. “To that end, there is an urgent need for additional effective teaching tools able to reach a generation that requires instant access to information and advanced technology.”

“Of particular interest to this proposal is the development of a highly effective, marketable, and interactive educational video game (iEVG) that focuses on STEM topics and targets 5th and 6th grade students—the age at which interest in STEM subjects is developed or lost,” the grant states.

The goal of the study is to create a computer game with “significant commercial potential that increases awareness of the importance of clean water in human health.”

The project, which began in July, has received $224,999. Research will continue through 2018.

Meadowlark Science and Education announced an upcoming project on its website for a computer game entitled “Water Follies.” The objective of the game is for children to convince politicians on the importance of environmental issues.

“You play as Clark Flyer, a meadowlark who works together with a diverse cast of lovable animal characters, to solve and correct environmental issues plaguing their town,” the company said. “Clark’s goal is to convince the reluctant politicians in power that clean, lead-free drinking water should be everyone’s top priority.”

“Using your knowledge of STEM, you will solve puzzles, conduct experiments, and develop hypotheses to right the environmental wrongs that have affected the community,” Meadowlark Science and Education said. “By interacting with the townsfolk, you will make many new friends and learn about their lives. With the help of your new buddies, you can make Holian Falls a town where everyone would want to live!”

The company has a disclaimer on its website listing government funding and that the content is “solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”

The Delta Tunnels: A Bad Deal for All Californians

We all know that when government wants a project they low-ball the costs and the effects.  In the case of the Jerry Brown Delta Tunnel scam, it is “only” going to cost $69 billion—this is a State with a debt of $1.5 trillion.  Oh, and another Brown scam to cost $200 billion—the choo choo to no where.  In both cases the only way to finance these projects is through higher taxes and higher water costs.

“Moreover, the biological opinion only accounts for the construction of the tunnels, neglecting to address the impacts of increased water diversion during operation on endangered species and wildlife that rely on the Delta ecosystem for survival.

After the Tunnels are built, many of the 4 million residents of the Delta, Stockton, San Joaquin County, Antioch, and Contra Costa County will be left with drinking water that won’t meet Clean Water Act standards—that is if the 2015 Clean Water Rule survives the Trump Administration’s recent proposal to repeal it. Increased water diversion will bring more saltwater further east into the Delta from the San Francisco Bay, further threatening the health of the Delta’s people, native and migratory species, and agricultural sector. The losses of my community will continue to line the pockets of corporate interests in the Central Valley and Southern California despite

Who really needs clean water?  While the Democrats scream that Republicans hate the environment, Democrat Guv Brown, claiming he wants to save the Earth, is willing to spend $69 billion or more, create 14 years of pollution and noise, just to pay off the corporations and unions that will get the unneeded work.  Why is Texas do so well?  Because California works hard to destroy the environment, jobs and the economy.

Delta Tunnels

The Delta Tunnels: A Bad Deal for All Californians

Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, City Watch LA,  7/17/17

 

VOICES–Many Californians have fond memories of landing their first decent-paying job, working long hours to save enough for a down payment, and finally buying a family home. Many of us poured our weekends and hearts into repairing beautiful old houses.

Now imagine, after years of paying your mortgage, raising your family, and upgrading your property, that the state government chooses your neighborhood to become a vast industrial site–for more than a decade.

This is the living nightmare that Governor Jerry Brown’s Delta Tunnels proposal would create for my neighborhood in Stockton, on the eastern side of San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary.

In June the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a “no jeopardy” ruling on the construction of the tunnels, despite an estimated 40,000 construction trucks producing diesel emissions equal to putting six hundred thousand new cars on the road. Once the state government uses eminent domain to seize properties for the proposed Delta Tunnels, Bay-Delta residents will be living with around-the-clock noise and pollution for 14 years if there are no construction delays.

Moreover, the biological opinion only accounts for the construction of the tunnels, neglecting to address the impacts of increased water diversion during operation on endangered species and wildlife that rely on the Delta ecosystem for survival.

After the Tunnels are built, many of the 4 million residents of the Delta, Stockton, San Joaquin County, Antioch, and Contra Costa County will be left with drinking water that won’t meet Clean Water Act standards—that is if the 2015 Clean Water Rule survives the Trump Administration’s recent proposal to repeal it. Increased water diversion will bring more saltwater further east into the Delta from the San Francisco Bay, further threatening the health of the Delta’s people, native and migratory species, and agricultural sector. The losses of my community will continue to line the pockets of corporate interests in the Central Valley and Southern California despite

Though Californians rejected a Peripheral Canal proposal in 1982, this time there will not be a clean vote of the people. Project approval will be handed to the Delta Stewardship Council whose members are mostly appointed by the Governor. The special interest water districts making up the Joint Powers Authority will approve a financial plan that has urban ratepayers subsidizing corporate agriculture, including Stewart Resnick’s Wonderful Company.

Four wholesale water districts: Santa Clara Valley Water District, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Westlands Water District, and Kern County Water Agency will have control over a significant portion of California’s water. California residents will have no say in how much that water costs, or if their neighborhood receives its fair share for the money it spends. Through the participation of Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Southland homeowners will pay an extra $9000 per household over 40 years and will receive no additional water. In fact, the Delta Tunnels may become a very expensive stranded asset.

My home, my community, the magnificent, picturesque estuary that I love, is tied directly to the health and wealth of your community. Our middle-class businesses will falter, and our poor people will suffer when water is taken out of the estuary. In Southern California, middle-class businesses and your poor people will suffer when the $17 billion bill comes due. The only upside is for Big Agriculture, largely growing crops for export to Asia.

Instead of this expensive gamble on one massive construction project, let’s instead invest in the hundreds of underfunded local water projects that are proven to build California’s water sustainability and create good paying, long-term, local jobs throughout the state.  

(Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla is executive director of Restore the Delta. She lives in Stockton, California.)

 

Los Angeles Times Denies Request To Correct False Claims By Disgraced Columnist Michael Hiltzik

Lets get real.  The Los Angeles Times is not an accurate newspaper.  In fact, like CNN, it is the poster child for Fake News.  Worse, it uses good trees to push lies, misrepresentation and is an effort not to inform the people, but to indoctrinate them.  Facts are to be manipulated by the LA Times.  The L.A. Times is the dead tree equivalent to the “News” on Saturday Night Live—meant to entertain and provide ideological purity, not the truth.

“At issue is the charge by Hiltzik that Ben Domenech, The Federalist‘s publisher, lied when he noted on Face The Nation on June 25 that Kasich “ended up having to throw 34,000 disabled people off the [Medicaid] program” in order to make room for able-bodied adults who were made eligible through Kasich’s Medicaid expansion under Obamacare. Domenech’s claim was based on budget estimates provided by Kasich’s own administration and confirmed by multiple independent policy experts. The Wall Street Journal investigated the claim by Domenech and found it to be completely accurate.

“Sure enough, in 2015 Ohio redesigned its disability determination system to remove some 34,000 people from the safety-net rolls,” the paper noted in early July.

But unfortunately for readers of the Los Angeles Times, actual facts are subordinate to the extreme left-wing political agenda of the paper’s most ethically challenged columnist.”

Years ago, I had a wonderful dog.  When he died, I stopped my subscription to the Times—it was no longer needed.  Why does the Times defend the loss of health care for the disabled?  Shame on them.

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Los Angeles Times Denies Request To Correct False Claims By Disgraced Columnist Michael Hiltzik

The Los Angeles Times is refusing to retract a bogus Obamacare claim by disgraced columnist Michael Hiltzik.

 

By Sean Davis, The Federalist, 7/17/17

The Los Angeles Times is refusing to correct an error-ridden column by disgraced columnist Michael Hiltzik regarding changes to Ohio’s Medicaid program by Gov. John Kasich. Rather than admit error and correct the record, Los Angeles Times reader representative Deirdre Edgar responded to a formal request for correction by asserting that “disagreement does not warrant correction,” a peculiar standard when the issue is whether facts were accurately reported by the newspaper.

At issue is the charge by Hiltzik that Ben Domenech, The Federalist‘s publisher, lied when he noted on Face The Nation on June 25 that Kasich “ended up having to throw 34,000 disabled people off the [Medicaid] program” in order to make room for able-bodied adults who were made eligible through Kasich’s Medicaid expansion under Obamacare. Domenech’s claim was based on budget estimates provided by Kasich’s own administration and confirmed by multiple independent policy experts. The Wall Street Journal investigated the claim by Domenech and found it to be completely accurate.

“Sure enough, in 2015 Ohio redesigned its disability determination system to remove some 34,000 people from the safety-net rolls,” the paper noted in early July.

But unfortunately for readers of the Los Angeles Times, actual facts are subordinate to the extreme left-wing political agenda of the paper’s most ethically challenged columnist.

No stranger to garbage activism masquerading as journalism, Hiltzik has a long history of deliberately deceiving his readers, his employers, and even his fellow journalists. Deliberate deception is pretty much Hiltzik’s stock in trade. In 2006, Hiltzik was suspended after being busted for “sockpuppeting,” the practice of posting comments to news stories under a fake name. Prior to that, Hiltzik was busted for hacking into the e-mail accounts of other journalists. Here’s how the New York Times covered news of Hiltzik’s hacking at the time:

Correspondents in The Times Moscow bureau became suspicious when they discovered that their passwords had been entered into the computer system at times when they had not been using the computer, journalists close to the bureau said. The newspaper’s computer system keeps a record of each time an employee uses his password to log onto the system.

In the paper’s sting operation, two electronic messages containing false information were sent from a correspondent in The Times’s Jerusalem bureau to a correspondent in the Moscow bureau. Mr. Hiltzik intercepted those messages and later inquired verbally about their content at the Moscow bureau, the journalists said.

It could not be learned exactly how Mr. Hiltzik obtained the passwords necessary for him to gain access to his colleagues’ electronic mail. It is also uncertain what position Mr. Hiltzik will take when he returns to Los Angeles early next year.

“We were extremely upset,” a journalist who was hacked by Hiltzik told the Washington Post. “It was an incredible invasion of privacy. There were a lot of personal e-mails in there.”

In 2015, during the heat of the Republican presidential primary, Hiltzik also attacked Carly Fiorina, a cancer survivor, for having the audacity to note on the campaign trail that she had survived cancer.

The refusal of the Los Angeles Times to do the right thing and correct Hiltzik’s myriad errors is disappointing, but not surprising. After Hiltzik hacked the e-mail accounts of other journalists, the paper kept him on the payroll. After he repeatedly and deliberately created and used fake identities to comment on his own articles and anonymously attack his detractors, the paper kept him on the payroll. The Los Angeles Times has made abundantly clear that when it comes to Hiltzik, a sockpuppet and e-mail hacker who viciously attacked a woman for speaking openly about her battle with cancer, there is simply no behavior it won’t tolerate.

The full text of the letter The Federalist sent to the Los Angeles Times requesting a retraction of Hiltzik’s false article and the official Los Angeles Times response to the formal request are reprinted below.

July 5, 2017

To Whom It May Concern:

I write to request a formal public retraction of Michael Hiltzik’s June 26 column for the Los Angeles Times, entitled “Here’s how a bogus claim on Medicaid made it onto CBS, with no pushback.” The premise of Mr. Hiltzik’s column, that Ben Domenech made a false claim about the effects of changes to Ohio’s Medicaid program, is itself demonstrably false.

On June 25, Mr. Domenech stated on the Face The Nation program on CBS that Ohio Gov. John Kasich “ended up having to throw 34,000 disabled people off of the program because it incentivized adding these working, able-bodied adults over people who actually were in the system who had disabilities or had other dependence.” Rather than being “bogus” or “highly misleading,” as Mr. Hiltzik charged, Mr. Domenech’s claim is supported by voluminous evidence, including multiple statements and estimates from Gov. Kasich’s own administration.

As part of its expansion of the state’s Medicaid program pursuant to the federal Affordable Care Act, the Kasich administration in 2016 changed the Medicaid eligibility requirements for what is known as the Aged, Blind, and Disabled population, or ABD. Prior to those changes, certain members of the ABD population in Ohio could qualify for Medicaid if their monthly income was less than $634 (64 percent of the federal poverty limit) in at least one month during the year through what was known as spend-down eligibility. The changes enacted by Gov. Kasich increased the spend-down income threshold to $743/month (75 percent of the federal poverty limit).

According to the Kasich administration’s own estimates, those changes meant that over 34,000 individuals who were eligible for Medicaid under the old spend-down requirements would no longer qualify for Medicaid under the new requirements, which increased the income eligibility threshold by nearly 20 percent. In a separate document, the Kasich administration estimated that tens of thousands of previously eligible Medicaid recipients “will no longer qualify for Medicaid because their income is too high” under the new standards enacted by Gov. Kasich. While the Kasich administration planned to transition those members of the ABD population from 209(b) Medicaid coverage to section 1634 Medicaid coverage in 2016, the new eligibility requirements would take force in 2017, instantly putting Medicaid coverage at risk for tens of thousands of disabled individuals.

Independent health policy experts came to the same conclusion as the Kasich administration. Beth Kowalczyk, the chief policy officer for the Ohio Association of Area Agency on Aging, stated that under the Medicaid changes enacted by Gov. Kasich, “Many individuals who are currently using spenddown for Medicaid eligibility will simply lose Medicaid and will have to seek coverage on the federal health exchange.” The Ohio Health Care Association similarly noted that Ohio would see significant budget savings as a result of increasing Medicaid eligibility requirements for the state’s disabled population.

“Significant savings come from removing 34,050 spend-down beneficiaries in the community from Medicaid coverage and shifting them to other coverage not paid by the state,” the organization noted in a detailed PowerPoint presentation explaining the changes to the state’s Medicaid program.

Unfortunately, Mr. Hiltzik chose to ignore this evidence in his fact-free broadside against Mr. Domenech’s factually accurate claim. Instead, Mr. Hiltzik rejected the evidence simply because he was unaware of it.

“Throwing 34,000 disabled people off Medicaid would be hard to do without creating a major fuss, yet we’d never heard anything about it,” Mr. Hiltzik wrote.

This is an odd journalistic standard for evaluating the factual basis of a claim. Rather than fabricating figures from thin air, Mr. Domenech repeated the estimates and conclusions about a change to Ohio’s Medicaid program that had been publicly offered by the government administrators of that very program and corroborated by multiple outside experts. Not only were tens of thousands of disabled individuals no longer eligible for Medicaid in Ohio due entirely to policy changes enacted by Gov. Kasich, they were made ineligible by design in order to eliminate costs previously paid for by the state of Ohio. White papers from Gov. Kasich’s administration make clear that the very purpose of the new requirements was to force disabled individuals to seek health coverage outside of the state-funded Medicaid system.

After claiming that Mr. Domenech’s claim must be false because Mr. Hiltzik was unfamiliar with the information, Mr. Hiltzik then attempted to refute Mr. Domenech’s claim of coverage changes in 2017 by citing data from 2015. In his column, Mr. Hiltzik cited a quote from an official about disability caseload in 2015-2016 as proof that Mr. Domenech was lying about policy effects in 2017. Had Mr. Hiltzik reviewed the evidence provided by Mr. Domenech, he would have known that the eligibility changes enacted in 2016 would not take effect until January of 2017. Mr. Domenech made no claims about disability caseload in 2015, an entirely different metric than the number of people currently eligible for the program. Instead of reviewing the relevant facts, Mr. Hiltzik instead parroted irrelevant ones in his attempt to prove that Mr. Domenech’s claim was “bogus.”

The most problematic aspect of Mr. Hiltzik’s column however, is the fact that he actually admitted that Mr. Domenech’s claim was 100 percent accurate.

“As part of its transition, Ohio eliminated the “spend down” program, Mr. Hiltzik wrote. “About 34,000 people who might have qualified under spend-down now wouldn’t qualify for Medicaid.”

However, in a transparent attempt to wave away the factual accuracy of Mr. Domenech’s sole claim, Mr. Hiltzik then moved the goalposts and claimed, “But that doesn’t mean they were left uncovered.” But Mr. Domenech made no claims about source of coverage. His sole claim was that Medicaid eligibility changes enacted by Gov. Kasich would disqualify 34,000 individuals from participating in the program.

After spending paragraph after paragraph smearing Mr. Domenech for offering a “bogus” and “highly misleading” claim about the effects of Gov. Kasich’s changes to Ohio’s Medicaid program, Mr. Hiltzik admitted that Mr. Domenech’s claim, which came directly from estimates provided by Gov. Kasich’s own administration, was entirely accurate.

The Los Angeles Times has a long tradition of enforcing rigorous journalistic standards in its reporting on matters of public policy. Mr. Hiltzik’s column and the myriad charges levied within it do not meet the typically high journalist standards of the Los Angeles Times. As a result, I look forward to a full, formal retraction of Mr. Hiltzik’s June 26 column. Please feel free to contact me via e-mail if you have any questions about this official request for a retraction.

Sincerely,

Sean Davis
The Federalist

Thank you for writing. We understand that The Federalist disagrees with Michael Hiltzik’s opinion column, but disagreement does not warrant a correction. However, the Op-Ed staff may consider your submission for a Blowback piece. More info is here: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/readersreact/la-op-blowback-about-story.html

Best,
Deirdre Edgar

California Struggles to Implement New Gun-Control Measures

The bad news is that California Democrats passed numerous bills to limit your ownership of guns and ammunition magazines.  The good news is that the courts are not allowing this, plus the California Department of Justice.  The Democrats decided to see what they could get away with, instead of staying inside the Constitution.

“Then, on June 29, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction blocking the enforcement of the state’s gun magazine confiscation plan.

“The regulation is neither presumptively legal nor longstanding,” U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez said in his ruling. “The statute hits close to the core of the Second Amendment and is more than a slight burden. When the simple test of Heller is applied, a test that persons of common intelligence can understand, the statute is adjudged an unconstitutional abridgment.”

Another troubled part of California’s new gun-control regime is a plan to require all ammunition sales be done through specially licensed dealers. By July 1 those who wanted to apply for the license to sell ammunition were supposed to be able to apply online, and the DOJ was supposed to have an online database of licensed dealers up and running.”

Instead of supporting the deportation of criminal illegal aliens, Democrats prefer to make more victims by protecting the criminals and making it more difficult for honest people to protect themselves.   In Texas, you are allowed to open carry your guns—in California the Legislature is trying to take away your guns.

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California Struggles to Implement New Gun-Control Measures

‘These delays are really just a symptom of how insanely overbroad and complicated the system has become’

BY: Stephen Gutowski, Washington Free Beacon,  7/18/17

California has faced a number of setbacks in implementing the state’s latest gun-control measures, causing a number of deadlines to be pushed back and leaving some measures in legal limbo.

After passing laws that expand the definition of “assault weapon” and make it illegal to possess gun magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, the state is facing myriad problems in trying to enforce the new laws. The first trouble came when the California Department of Justice (DOJ) attempted to draft their plan to register all of the rifles in California which have “bullet button” reloading devices and other rifles that would fall under the state’s expanded assault weapons ban. On June 26, the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) determined that the DOJ had improperly sought to avoid the public comment period on the plan. That caused the deadline for registration to be pushed back six months.

Then, on June 29, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction blocking the enforcement of the state’s gun magazine confiscation plan.

“The regulation is neither presumptively legal nor longstanding,” U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez said in his ruling. “The statute hits close to the core of the Second Amendment and is more than a slight burden. When the simple test of Heller is applied, a test that persons of common intelligence can understand, the statute is adjudged an unconstitutional abridgment.”

Another troubled part of California’s new gun-control regime is a plan to require all ammunition sales be done through specially licensed dealers. By July 1 those who wanted to apply for the license to sell ammunition were supposed to be able to apply online, and the DOJ was supposed to have an online database of licensed dealers up and running. Neither the online license application portal nor the seller database were up and the regulations governing the licensing process were just made public on Monday. That means the process will likely take several more months to complete despite the fact that it will be illegal to purchase ammunition from anyone without the currently nonexistent ammunition dealer license on January 1, 2018.

Gun rights groups, which have labeled the new gun-control measures passed in 2016 the “Gunpocalypse,” have challenged the various new regulations. The California Rifle and Pistol Association, with backing from the National Rifle Association, filed the suit against the magazine confiscation plan that resulted in the Benitez ruling. The Firearms Policy Coalition has filed a suit against the DOJ over their refusal to publicly release their proposed assault-weapons regulations.

Brandon Combs, president of the Firearms Policy Coalition, said the main problem facing the state’s efforts to flesh out their new gun-control measures is how complicated they are.

“California governor Jerry Brown, Gavin Newsom, and the state’s legislature have created a system of gun-control laws that are so complicated and so full of problems that the attorney general and thousands of DOJ lawyers can’t figure out how to make them work without illegally creating new regulations,” Combs told the Free Beacon. “I think that a number of things are contributing to the delays, including the fact that DOJ doesn’t really want people to exercise their right to keep and bear arms. They don’t prioritize civil rights, especially ones they don’t like.”

Combs said he believes it will take the state several years to figure out how to make the new gun-control measures workable.

“I think that California’s gun-control laws have finally become so complicated that we’re now in probably a two- to three-year period of the state trying to figure out how to clean up the mess it made and make the laws enforceable,” he said. “These delays are really just a symptom of how insanely overbroad and complicated the system has become.”

He said that the reason the laws have become so complicated is to hide the true intentions of California legislators.

“Really, all of this is just layering lipstick on the gun-control pig,” Combs said. “It’s not that difficult to ban guns or people, but they are trying to do it in a way that makes it look like they are not. So, delays like this is what you get when gun-control proponents can’t help but be dishonest about the laws they’re passing.”

Gun-control groups have not expressed much public concern over the delays and setbacks. The 2016 California gun-control measures represented a bright spot for the movement in a year that largely favored the efforts of gun-rights groups. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence did not immediately return a request for comment from the Washington Free Beacon but previously said they were not worried about the delayed implementation of new assault-weapon regulations.

“I don’t see this as a catastrophe,” Amanda Wilcox, legislative chair of the Brady Campaign’s California chapter, told the Trace. “It’s a setback, but I take the long-term view. The important thing is that people can’t buy [bullet-button firearms].”

The California DOJ did not respond to a request for comment.

 

Students suspended for shutting down pro-police speech

This is a man bites dog type of story.  At the Claremont Colleges last Spring a speaker wanted to discuss the police and why they are needed.  Instead, the bullies of the campus decided to close down the speech, the campus fascists refused to allow the public to listen to the discussion.  Like the Brownshirts of Nazi Germany, they decided what students could hear and not hear.  As usual the Administration took its time to punish those responsible.  But, shockingly, some of the goons are being punished.

““On the evening of April 6, a group of approximately 170 individuals from the Claremont Colleges and others outside our community organized, led, and executed a blockade of the Athenaeum and the Kravis Center. They breached the perimeter safety and security fence and campus safety line, and established human barriers to entrances and exits. These actions deprived many of the opportunity to gather, hear the speaker, and engage with questions and comments,” according to the statement.

“… Sanctions were based on the nature and degree of leadership in the blockade, the acknowledgment and acceptance of responsibility, and other factors.”

Some were suspended, a few put on probation.  Why not punish ALL those involved—even if it is probation?  Maybe forcing all of them to take sensitivity classes, at their own expense as the price to return to school?  Yes, the leaders need to be punished—but so should the followers.

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Students suspended for shutting down pro-police speech

 

Jennifer Kabbany, The College Fix,  7/17/17

 

Several students involved in a large and aggressive protest against a pro-police speech at Claremont McKenna College in April that blocked the public from attending the talk have now been punished, the school announced Monday.

The throng had surrounded the building, forcing the speaker, “The War on Cops” author Heather Mac Donald, to give the talk via livestream to a near-empty room as demonstrators yelled “F*ck the police” and “Black Lives Matter” and banged on the venue’s windows.

After reviewing video and photos of the blockade, the college has punished seven students: Three received one-year suspensions, two received one-semester suspensions, and two were put on conduct probation, the college’s announcement said.

Officials also issued provisional suspensions of on-campus privileges to four non-students who appear to have played significant roles in the blockade, according to the statement.

“On the evening of April 6, a group of approximately 170 individuals from the Claremont Colleges and others outside our community organized, led, and executed a blockade of the Athenaeum and the Kravis Center. They breached the perimeter safety and security fence and campus safety line, and established human barriers to entrances and exits. These actions deprived many of the opportunity to gather, hear the speaker, and engage with questions and comments,” according to the statement.

“… Sanctions were based on the nature and degree of leadership in the blockade, the acknowledgment and acceptance of responsibility, and other factors.”

The school called the demonstration a breach of the school’s institutional values of freedom of expression and assembly, and added it “created unsafe conditions in disregard of state law.”

Claremont McKenna is part of the Claremont Colleges, a consortium of five elite private universities in Southern California, the others being: Pomona, Scripps, Harvey Mudd and Pitzer colleges.

The statement put out by Claremont McKenna notes that its administrators have asked each campus to complete their own misconduct reviews.

“Our students must master the skills of respectful dialogue across all barriers. Our community must protect the right to learn from others, especially those with whom we strongly disagree. And Claremont McKenna College must take every step necessary to uphold these vital commitments,” the statement said.

Mac Donald, in an email Monday to The College Fix, responded to the news with this statement:

I am confident that Claremont McKenna College conducted its Student Conduct Process in good faith and with a determination to uphold the principle of open and reasoned discourse.

Nevertheless, while the outcome of CMC’s process is—admirably—more transparent than the disciplinary process at Middlebury College following the Charles Murray violence, it would be useful to know why the number of students subjected to that process was so small: less than 5% of the blockade group.

To be sure, some portion of those blockaders were not CMC students. Did CMC determine that the other CMC students were not responsible for the blockade, or did they simply lack sufficient evidence to charge them? Still, in this era of spineless administrators, it is salutary that five students received actual suspensions—three for one year, another two for one semester—which is more punishment than has been reported at other schools experiencing similar outbreaks of student totalitarianism. CMC is to be congratulated on following through on its promise to hold at least some students responsible.

CMC announces that in the aftermath of the April 6 blockade, its faculty “must help us understand how to mitigate the forces that divide [our] society.” As long as CMC remains complicit in the ludicrous conceit that its minority students are oppressed and in need of a safe space, it will contribute to social divisions, rather than mitigating them. When CMC students demanded the ouster of Dean Mary Spellman in 2015 for allegedly contributing to CMC’s unsafe environment for minority students, President Chodosh did not rebut the charge that minority students were the victims of microaggressions and other forms of racism. Instead CMC created the CARE center. I asked President Chodosh if he has ever defended his faculty against the implicit charge that they treat minority students with anything other than full respect. He has yet to respond.

As long as the ideology of racial victimology dominates American higher education and finds outposts even in institutions as traditionally committed to apoliticized learning as Claremont McKenna College, student demands to silence points of view that

 

California’s Low Birth Rate is Worrying Experts. Here’s What You Should Know.

CalPers is $1.4 trillion in unfunded liabilities.  The State has a $1.5 trillion debt.  We are protecting illegal aliens instead of enforcing the law.  We have the worst roads in the nation and the highest taxes.  Of course we have a low birthrate—young people do not want to finance the scams, corruptions and big government of the ruling Party.  They move to Texas and other Free States.

“• Birth rates are falling across the state, but the declines are most striking in Southern California

  • Astronomical housing prices have made the state an inhospitable place for young marrieds and people of child-bearing age.

Oh, an the seniors are moving out of State as well.  If you live on a fixed income—it is cheaper in Arizona or Nevada—who can afford the almost 10% sales taxes most in California pay, for example.

baby-voting

California’s Low Birth Rate is Worrying Experts. Here’s What You Should Know.

California County News, 07/17/2017

California’s plummeting birth rate is eliciting concern. Births per 1,000 women have declined across all age groups in every county in Southern California and are now at their lowest levels since the Great Depression.

There are three pieces worth reading on the subject today: a county-by-county breakdown showing where and how birth rates in California have dropped, this editorial by Ian Wheeler in the Daily News laying out some of the economic impacts, and another op-ed by Joel Kotkin aptly titled, “Is California anti-family?”

Spoiler alert: yes.

Here are few conclusions we can draw:

  • Birth rates are falling across the state, but the declines are most striking in Southern California
  • Astronomical housing prices have made the state an inhospitable place for young marrieds and people of child-bearing age.
  • The trend poses a serious threat to California’s economic future, with demographers predicting a smaller workforce forced to support more retirees and increasingly strained entitlement programs.

 

California Cuts Services, Staff to Pay Pension Costs

CalPERS is taking its toll on local government in California.  This year most cities are forced to pay about 20% more for the agency than last year.  Cities fall into two categories—1) they did not raise taxes, so must cut basic services.  Or, 2) they raised taxes in 2016 for the “purpose of roads,  libraries and public safety”—but that money is actually being spent for CalPERS.  CalPERS still has according to independent organizations an unfunded liability of $1.4 trillion.

“In Santa Barbara County, the 2017-2018 budget calls for laying off nearly 70 employees while dipping into reserve funds. The biggest cuts are to the Department of Social Services, which works to aid low-income families and senior citizens. Meanwhile, $546 million of needed infrastructure improvements go unfunded as Santa Barbara County struggles to pay off $700 million in unfunded pension liabilities. County officials estimate that increasing pension costs may cause hundreds of future layoffs.

“In Santa Barbara County, the 2017-2018 budget calls for laying off nearly 70 employees while dipping into reserve funds. The biggest cuts are to the Department of Social Services, which works to aid low-income families and senior citizens. Meanwhile, $546 million of needed infrastructure improvements go unfunded as Santa Barbara County struggles to pay off $700 million in unfunded pension liabilities. County officials estimate that increasing pension costs may cause hundreds of future layoffs.”

This is another Leftist County that loves taxes and big government.  They desrve less services and a crumbling infrastructure—they Board of Supervisors for instance turned down $1 billion from an oil company to drill.  Had they voted in favor of the oil—meaning jobs—plus a steady flow of revenues, they would have enough money for employees and roads.  They created the disaster themselves.  Will the voters understand?

Calpers headquarters is seen in Sacramento, California, October 21, 2009. REUTERS/Max Whittaker

California Cuts Services, Staff to Pay Pension Costs

David Schwartzman, City Watch LA,  7/10/17

POLICY–Across California, many local governments have raised taxes while cutting services. Local officials desperate for union support have made irresponsible deals with public employee unions, creating staggering employee costs. Taxpayer money meant to provide essential services to the least well-off instead goes directly to higher salaries and benefits.

In Santa Barbara County, the 2017-2018 budget calls for laying off nearly 70 employees while dipping into reserve funds. The biggest cuts are to the Department of Social Services, which works to aid low-income families and senior citizens. Meanwhile, $546 million of needed infrastructure improvements go unfunded as Santa Barbara County struggles to pay off $700 million in unfunded pension liabilities. County officials estimate that increasing pension costs may cause hundreds of future layoffs.

Unfortunately, Santa Barbara County is far from alone. Tuolumne County is issuing layoffs in the face of rising labor and pension costs from previous agreements. In Kern County, a budget shortfall spurred by increased pension costs has led to public safety layoffs, teacher shortages, budget cuts, and the elimination of the Parks and Recreation department, even as Kern County’s unfunded pension liability surpasses $2 billion. In the Santa Ana Unified School District, nearly 300 teachers have been laid off after years of receiving pay raises that made them unaffordable, including a 10% raise in 2015.

In Riverside County, non-union county employees took the blow for the county’s irresponsible pension deals, as all but one of the 32 employees the county laid off this June were non-union members. This came after contract negotiations granted union employees hundreds of millions of dollars in raises. The Riverside County DA said these raises caused public safety cuts. In addition, Riverside County imposed an extra 1% sales tax to pay for these benefits. Across California, citizens suffer as local governments give away their money while cutting their services.

Government projections continually underestimate pension costs. According to a new study by the Hoover Institution, pension liabilities are understated by trillions of dollars. This happens because governments assume unrealistic rates of return on pension investments. The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CALPERS), the agency managing pension and health benefits for most California employees, will assume arate of return of 7% starting in 2020 (the current assumption is 7.5%), however, last year, CALPERS earned a return of 0.6%. California’s defined benefit system for public employees means that governments must pay their employees a fixed amount regardless of how pension plans perform. Rosy estimates for future pension performance make government obligations look smaller than they are.

Unrealistic projections also allow government officials to award big pensions, as officials argue that the big future returns they have assumed can pay off the costs. When reality hits and pension returns fall short, taxpayers are left footing the bill. This year, Californians paid $5.4 billion because of this baseless confidence, more than the state spent on environmental protection, drought response, and fighting wildfires combined. Short-sighted government optimism has real consequences for citizens forced to live in the real world.

The future of government finance throughout California looks bleak due to government mismanagement of taxpayer funds. Local representatives grant unions generous terms, and those unions in turn donate to re-election campaigns. This vicious cycle costs Californians essential services. Agreements between government officials and union bosses allies harm taxpayers, service beneficiaries and even some union workers, who find their representatives complicit in laying them off.

Government does not exist to give taxpayer money to the politically connected. Because of their twisted incentives, California’s elected officials are directly responsible for the state having the highest poverty rate in the country, and the second most unfree economy. Instead of working to fix California’s challenges, many local officials create them by refusing to serve their constituents and instead forcing citizens serve the government. If public servants are serious about real improvements, they need to push for changes to the public pension system and for limitations in every interaction between lawmakers and public employee unions.

 

Yet Another Wealthy California Town Is Short on Cash

Moraga is a liberal/Progressive town—it loves taxes, unions and big government.  The cost of a house, median price, is $1.2 million.  This is a town where the middle class work but do not live.  Yet, with all the taxes and government, the City is running out of cash.  Oh, they are blaming this on Prop. 13—translated that means they want the “right” to tax folks out of their homes.

“But on June 28, the 17,000-resident town authorized a declaration of fiscal emergency, a step California cities can take before bankruptcy. In this case, it gives officials in the affluent enclave the power to expedite a referendum on new fees to boost its revenue, which has been restrained by a lackluster retail base and property-tax limits the state enacted almost 40 years ago.

“We just don’t have enough revenue to take us through the future for many more years before we would really be in some of the situations other cities are, where they’re laying off mass numbers of employees or declaring bankruptcy,” town manager Robert Priebe said in an interview.”

Watch as Bay Area towns, mostly thanks to the skyrocketing CalPERS mandatory contributions, go belly up, cut basic services and wonder how this happened.  In fact the people of Moraga VOTED for the taxes and big government—this is what they wanted.

Money

Yet Another Wealthy California Town Is Short on Cash

By Romy Varghese, Bloomberg,  7/7/17

  • Moraga’s council announces fiscal emergency as funds dwindle
  • Town wants residents to mull new fees or face service cuts

The San Francisco suburb of Moraga seems as far as one could get from the financial pressures that have battered big cities like Detroit or Chicago. The price of a typical home has soared to more than $1.2 million, it’s not drowning in debt and there are even free summer concerts.

But on June 28, the 17,000-resident town authorized a declaration of fiscal emergency, a step California cities can take before bankruptcy. In this case, it gives officials in the affluent enclave the power to expedite a referendum on new fees to boost its revenue, which has been restrained by a lackluster retail base and property-tax limits the state enacted almost 40 years ago.

“We just don’t have enough revenue to take us through the future for many more years before we would really be in some of the situations other cities are, where they’re laying off mass numbers of employees or declaring bankruptcy,” town manager Robert Priebe said in an interview.

The community, where the median family income is $169,000 a year, illustrates an irony for some at the center of the California’s latest economic boom. While real estate prices have surged, the local tax collections haven’t necessarily followed the same trajectory because of Proposition 13, the 1978 ballot measure that keeps homeowners’ tax bills from rising by more than inflation or 2 percent a year. As a result, local government revenues are growing more slowly than the rest of the U.S., according to a state analysis, leaving some seeking other ways to raise money.

In Moraga, where the council discussed establishing a poet laureate position before approving the fiscal distress declaration, lowering headcount isn’t the first priority. The town’s $8.5 million budget this year authorizes about 36 full-time workers. Members instead opted to reduce services such as park maintenance in the community about 20 miles east of San Francisco.

“We’re not willing to hurt the public first,” Priebe said. “We’re not going to lay off half of our employees and have the quality of life of all of our citizens really be impacted.”

Moraga’s declaration hasn’t affected its standing on Wall Street. Its $7.7 million in outstanding debt is rated AA+, second highest by S&P Global Ratings. One of its bonds due April 2029 was valued on July 5 at 0.85 percentage point more than benchmark debt, little changed from the 0.82 percentage point seen on the day of the fiscal emergency declaration. That spread stood at 1.16 percentage point at 2016 year-end, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The squeeze on Moraga stems in part from two infrastructure failures: the damage to a bridge in April and a sinkhole that became such a civic event that residents threw it a sarcastic birthday celebration. Though officials are hoping for state and federal reimbursements, the cost to fix both depleted its savings, leaving the city vulnerable to another emergency. The general fund, boosted modestly with this year’s anticipated $46,217 surplus, has about $1.6 million in reserves.

The fiscal emergency declaration allows Moraga to put any revenue-raising measure on the ballot when it wants instead of waiting for a regularly scheduled election. Options being mulled include proposing a flat fee on property or a utility tax, Priebe said. The town will poll residents by phone to see what’s preferable.

Moraga should look to cut personnel expenses first, said Seth Freeman, an unsuccessful council candidate and the only resident to speak about the issue at the board meeting. He criticized the council’s decision to award raises to employees two weeks before issuing the emergency declaration.

“I’m concerned that the simple solution would be to raise taxes than to address some of the issues under the control of the town manager,” Freeman said in an interview. “The compensation for a small town is unaffordable.”

Priebe said the town’s costs are low compared to others in the county and that it must remain competitive. “If we offered no raises, we would lose people.”

 

New Research Reverses Negative Findings About Biggest School Voucher Programs

A study showed that for the first three years in a charter schools, the results are negative.  By the third year, the students were on par with union run schools—than it is all great.  Oh, and this at HALF the cost of government schools.  The better news is that almost all charter school students graduate and most go to college.  LAUSD has a 54% real graduation for the 2014-15 school year.

“However, by the third year in the program, these negative effects have disappeared. The performance of students in the voucher program was found to be on par with their public school peers. This is in fact an improvement upon public schooling because it indicates the same level of achievement can be had at half the cost of public schools or less.

In Indiana, Dr. Mark Berends of Notre Dame and R. Joseph Waddington of the University of Kentucky found a similar pattern. Students entering the Indiana voucher program fell behind their public school peers initially, before equaling them (in the case of math) and surpassing them (in the case of English) by their fourth year.

To paraphrase President Bush, government schools are soft core racism.  It is students of color that lose in government schools and succeed in charter schools.  Note Democrats and unions are holding children of color hostage in failed government schools—racism of the unions and the Democrat Party.  End racism, free the students.

classroom

New Research Reverses Negative Findings About Biggest School Voucher Programs

By Collin Roth and Will Flanders, The Federalist,  7/3/17

Despite the efforts of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and President Trump, school choice has been on the defensive. Outlets like The New York Times, National Public Radio, and The Atlantic have all given attention to a series of new studies that purport to show that students in voucher programs in Washington DC, Indiana, Louisiana, and Ohio were actually falling behind their public-school counterparts. These recent studies stand out from the preponderance of the evidence from other programs, which have found positive, or at minimum null, results.

However, new evidence released in this month on voucher programs in Louisiana and Indiana is establishing a pattern that should restore faith in advocates in the academic benefits of choice. Increasingly, it seems that choice students may undergo a performance drop upon initially entering the program, but a performance gain from continued exposure.

Dr. Patrick Wolf of the University of Arkansas and colleagues followed students randomly assigned to a school voucher in Louisiana via a lottery system. Such random assignment creates an experiment whereby the researchers can be far more certain that the effects they observe are due to the voucher program than other factors. In the first two years, Wolf and colleagues found negative effects on achievement in both math and language arts.

However, by the third year in the program, these negative effects have disappeared. The performance of students in the voucher program was found to be on par with their public school peers. This is in fact an improvement upon public schooling because it indicates the same level of achievement can be had at half the cost of public schools or less.

In Indiana, Dr. Mark Berends of Notre Dame and R. Joseph Waddington of the University of Kentucky found a similar pattern. Students entering the Indiana voucher program fell behind their public school peers initially, before equaling them (in the case of math) and surpassing them (in the case of English) by their fourth year.

The new results in Indiana and Louisiana are also consistent with the results of Milwaukee’s School Choice Demonstration Project that ended in 2012. That study of Milwaukee’s voucher program found insignificant differences among students in public schools and the voucher program. But the voucher students pulled ahead in English in the fourth year.

The significance of the pattern is still up for debate, but there is room for supposition. As with any student entering a new school, it is likely that newly minted voucher students undergo a period of adjustment. Differences in academic expectations, in school rules, and adjustments to a new social and academic environment may make it difficult for voucher students at first. But over time, these students adjust and increasingly thrive.

Successful school choice programs can and have been defined by more than just academic achievement. Coupled with the increasing popularity of voucher programs around the country, studies have found decreased criminal behavior, better school safety, higher likelihood of graduating from high school, and increases in civic values and tolerance. That plus the cost savings in an era of drastically indebted entitlement states makes school choice a positive policy option in myriad ways.

Nevertheless, policymakers and school choice advocates should not shy away from the debate on achievement. Long-term evaluations are consistently showing evidence of student growth. They also suggest a need for patience, cautioning against premature judgements about the success of a school choice program.