From the monthly archives: November 2016

ECOT went to court to block the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) from auditing student participation in the ECOT online operation. The Franklin County Common Pleas judge denied ECOT’s request for a preliminary injunction to block the audit. The Franklin County Court of Appeals upheld the lower Court decision on Tuesday. ECOT will likely appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court. Separately, ECOT filed an administrative appeal with ODE that will be heard December 5. Where does ECOT get the funds for this flurry of legal activities? Right out of deductions from school districts! Where is the […]

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Who needs licensed teachers anyway, right?

When last we saw Ohio Senate Bill 3, Valentine’s Day had just ended and stores were starting to stock the shelves with summer wear here in Ohio (though Christmas decorations weren’t far behind).  The bill had floundered for a while in the Ohio House and then appeared to be on the fast track for passage, though there did appear to be adequate time for hearings and public feedback.

And then John Kasich got in the heat of the presidential race and the Ohio Statehouse all but shut down and all committee meetings just […]

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Trump’s Education Secretary pick Betsy DeVos believes the public common school system is a failure. See a November 23 Edweek article.

All Children Matter Inc., once directed by DeVos, owes $5.3 million to the Ohio Elections Commission due to violations of Ohio campaign finance laws in 2008. (A campaign money laundering scheme) See November 24 Dispatch article. Also see the November 23 Detroit Free Press editorial by Stephen Henderson.

Edd Doerr, President, Americans for Religious Liberty, indicates that in 2000 DeVos and her husband supported a constitutional amendment […]

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Ohio Lawmakers Going To The Dogs

On November 30, 2016 By

Ohio has never been considered a progressive state. Now that the Republicans – the Hoofbeaters, I mean – are firmly in control of everything from the Statehouse troughs to the Ohio River and the Lake Erie shores, it may be impossible to convince them of the absurdities of their fantasies. Whether it be the shallow excuses of, say, Secretary of State Jon Husted, an operative who has charmed the pens of editorial writers with his eternal war on non -existent voter fraud, or Attorney General Mike DeWine, who seriously believes that there is a special place in Heaven – and […]

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Plunderbund Action: Contact Your Representative About SB331, the Petland Bill

Yesterday, a House committee held the first of two hearings this week on the controversial measure to block local ordinances regarding the sale of puppies from commercial breeders. As we noted before, the bill represents erodes local control, undoing the hard work of advocates and elected officials who have gotten laws passed in Toledo and Grove City, and contains a loophole to permit the sale from self-defined “hobby breeders,” a category not subject to oversight by the state under the bill.

Bill sponsor Senator Bob Peterson defended the loophole, […]

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David DeWitt wrote a good piece at Plunderbund yesterday covering the many thoughtful responses from Ohio politicians about the knife attack by a Somali student on the campus of the Ohio State University.

One of those responses came from Ohio’s Republican Governor John Kasich who said that his “thoughts are with the victims of the attack right now” while praising the efforts of the first responders.


Lots of folks may not know that Ohio has a large Somali community.  Columbus is home to over 45,000 Somali immigrants, with over a thousand Somali students attending Ohio’s universities and colleges.  Ohio’s conservative governor certainly did seem […]

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For millions of Americans, President-elect Donald Trump’s selection of U.S. Rep. Tom Price, R-Georgia, as Secretary of Health and Human Services represents the worst kind of news: A completely uncertain and volatile medical future.

Price, an orthopedic surgeon from the suburbs of Atlanta, has been a leading opponent of President Barack Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act, peddling his replacement proposal – the Empowering Patients First Act – in recent budgets.

And what is the Empowering Patients First Act? A hodgepodge of warmed-over Republican “free market” leftovers that will hurt millions of people in the interest of insurance companies’ bottom lines. This […]

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It’s a very, very important question for Democrats going forward, now that Republicans are in firm control in the nation’s capital, having won a national magic trick of historic proportions with Donald Trump’s surprise victory over Hillary Clinton. Since President Obama was first elected in 2008, Democrats have lost 63 House seats, 10 Senate seats and 14 governorships.

In Ohio, where Trump beat Clinton by 8.7 percentage points, resulting in a reversal of about 11 points from 2012 when President Barack Obama won Ohio again by 3 percent, one of Ohio’s four remaining Democratic congressman out of 16 […]

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National eyes turned toward Columbus Monday after an assailant attacked people on the Ohio State University campus. According to news reports, “a student veered his car onto the sidewalk, leaped out and stabbed several people with a butcher knife.” The suspect was reportedly shot dead by a campus police officer within minutes of launching the attack.

From the New York Times:

Two law enforcement officials identified the suspected attacker as Abdul Artan, 18. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because the name had not been made public. The officials said that Mr. […]

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Herr Trump is causing another stir in his wobbly end run to the White House by dismissing  intelligence briefings  as useless busywork for a creature of his towering presence.  That isn’t surprising for one who has boasted that he knows more about ISIS than all of the generals and once praised Scotland for joining Brexit, which it didn’t.  Putin?   Don’t get me started. Details, right?

He also is so above the madding crowd that he’s now suggesting that he might bar the “failing” New York Times and other unworthy  nuisances of unfair coverage of his campaign.  The idea quickly caught […]

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Remember when The Onion, which calls itself “America’s finest news site,” was the premier fake news publication full of preposterous stories that aimed to be funny because they couldn’t really be real?

So when a new Stanford University study of middle school students revealed that 82 percent weren’t able to figure out the difference between sponsored content and a real news article, should that really be a shocking revelation?

The Wall Street Journal article, “Most Students Don’t Know When News Is Fake,” says “Teens absorb social media news without considering the source,” then suggests “parents can teach research […]

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