Well, we managed to get through the governor’s State of the State speech unscathed in the comfort of our home with nary a word of parting seas. (If you missed his arrival in Medina, I can report that it was in all of the papers, just as he had planned it.)
The pageantry far exceeded the accuracy of Kasich’s assessment of the actual state of the state, which was sort of a spin-off of Voltaire’s Dr. Pangloss, the rosiest soul among fictional characters. It began with the first notice that the governor had chosen the Republican Town of Towns as his visible launching pad for re-election – no small concession to hometowner Bill Batchelder, the retiring Ohio House speaker.
The buildup of Medina’s small-town recognition for such an event soon assumed a merry life of its own. The medieval aspects of the governor’s entry into town (as shown in the art here) reflected what was once called “royal entry” with an endless line of trumpeted fanfares, caparisoned horses and, of course, the king himself lofted in full bejeweled regalia in the sheltered kiosk above the procession.
Departures are never recorded by classical artists, although the awed media told us about it the next day in Olympian terms. The Beacon Journal, enjoying the bottom-line benefit of not having to spring a reporter or two to yet-to-be discovered places in southern Ohio, took up a large portion of the front page and a full page of photos and stories inside to report the governor’s vision of the Ohio Miracle during his stay in the governor’s office today and possibly for at least five more years.
Such grandiose occasions, complete with the entire General Assembly and doting locals seated within eye contact, seldom deal with realities. You needed only to see the Beacon Journal’s’ day-after Page One headline to note the disconnect:
Kasich talks education, jobs.
Talking education by the governor has meant his enthusiastic support of charter schools sapping the public arena after he sternly issued a long-term threat to the education lobby to get out of his way when he first arrived on the scene from a Wall Street and Fox News job nearly four years ago.
Jobs? Is it nit-picking to mention the state has fallen to 47th place in providing private sector jobs? The governor is forever confident that Ohioans are too dumb (or lazy) to do the math.
Well, he’s had his vastly overripe royal entry into another campaign. It has been generously exclaimed by the media. And yes, I rained on his parade. Should we now see him get down to confronting all of his unfinished business as the state’s CEO without the blaring fanfare of the moment? I wouldn’t count on it.
Read more from Abe at Grumpy Abe