Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Perry: “I Didn’t Do It.”

I remember several years ago an episode on “The Simpsons” where Bart Simpson does some stupid clumsy thing in front of a host of witnesses and the first thing to come out of his mouth were those famous words of denial: “I didn’t do it.” It became a catchphrase like “Where’s the Beef?” became in the 80’s and “Wassss-UP?” about 10 years ago.

On the episode as it developed, anytime anyone said “I didn’t do it” everyone would erupt in gales of laughter.

Well today Governor Rick Perry had his Bart Simpson moment.

Today at a press conference, responding to a question concerning the expected thousands of teachers who are going to descend on Austin this Saturday to protest coming cutbacks in education and teacher layoffs, the governor had this to say, as quoted in the Austin American-Statesman:
“‘The lieutenant governor, the speaker, their colleagues aren’t going to hire or fire one teacher, as best I can tell,’ Perry said. ‘That is a local decision that will be made at the local districts.’”
See? Perry is saying in his own self-righteous disingenuous way that the people wielding the axe are the true villains in the coming educational crisis. It has absolutely nothing to do with state government. It’s those local school boards making local decisions.

I wish.

Except everyone knows who got us in this mess and how nice his hair looks on any given day.

It was Perry, whose agenda to lower property taxes and institute a business tax to fill the vacuum that this created, who caused the current budget crisis. It was Perry who took $3 billion in federal stimulus money meant for education and used it to balance his budget instead. It was Perry who turned down hundreds of millions of federal dollars for education because of the mandates they came with. And it was Perry’s antics that caused the insertion of a special clause requiring Texas to spend as much on education as it had in the previous year before they could collect more hundreds of millions of federal dollars for public school education.

And it was the legislature that hobbled local state school boards with a requirement that raising property tax rates for school districts above $1.04 per hundred dollar assessed value, required approval by the school district property electorate – a non-starter here in “T for Tea Party” Texas.

Rick Perry and Bart Simpson. Only their hairstyles separate them right now.

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