Posts by: Left Hook

Stormy Daniels isn’t the only one who has been offered hush money.

Some past employees of ECOT were offered some, too.  In ECOT’s case, kids and taxpayers got screwed – not a porn star.

News that several past employees were offered public money in exchange for agreeing not to disparage the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) follows an Associated Press story that quoted a whistleblower saying the Department of Education was informed last August that ECOT manipulated software to garner unearned money from the state. The whistleblower also provided the information to Auditor David Yost last year.

The whistleblower turned […]

Full Story...

We recently told you that Franklin County Commissioner and Democrat Paula Brooks is in league with Bill Lager – the man at the center of the charter pay-to-play scandal. She received $25,000 from him for her re-election campaign and her campaign hired a company aligned with Lager lobbyist Neil Clark to buy its TV time.

Brooks isn’t the only incumbent Democrat on the ballot aligned with Lager.

Sheriff Zach Scott gets money too. His failed run for mayor last year received $25,000 from Lager – money that arrived 9 days after Scott spoke at the 2105 ECOT graduation. Lager […]

Full Story...

Ohio’s charter school scandal finally has the potential to hurt Gov. John Kasich – just as his run for President banks on winning Ohio’s March 15th primary.

Given the scandal’s potential to hurt Kasich and his fellow Republicans, why is Franklin County Democrat Paula Brooks suddenly BFFs with Bill Lager – the man at the center of the charter pay-to-play scandal? And why is Brooks’ re-election campaign paying money to a company aligned with Lager lobbyist Neil Clark? For more than three decades Clark has helped Republicans maintain their majority in the Ohio Senate.

As the Columbus Dispatch reported […]

Full Story...

Gov. John Kasich has done the impossible: United Democrats, Republicans and Independents. A solid majority of each views his tax-shift plan as bad idea.

Just one-quarter of Ohio voters support the proposal to slash income tax rates but increase the rate and scope of the sales tax, with support dropping and opposition skyrocketing once the plan’s details are divulged, according to a new poll released today.

The poll found that 62% of Ohioans are opposed to the biggest suggested shift – paying for a reduction in state income taxes with an increase in the state sales tax.

“Ohioans would much […]

Full Story...

Recently retired House Speaker Bill Batchelder has long marketed himself as a fiscal hawk, legal scholar and a man of principle.  Critics have long maintained he is none of the above. Last week he proved them right.

The man who led efforts to cut programs for the poor and taxes for the rich never championed the cause of ending double dipping – the practice that allows public employees to work long enough to qualify for a pension, collect it, then go get another public sectors job.

Batchelder, a Republican from Medina, has mastered the art of double-dipping.

He was a […]

Full Story...

Professional football and hockey, male-dominated institutions that celebrate professional violence, are suddenly and earnestly confronting their long-festering problems of family violence.

Too bad Ohio continues to do so little when confronted with politicians facing similar patterns of similar acts.

Back in 2011, Plunderbund took the lead in reporting a 911 call that Melissa Jordan made when her husband, state Sen. Kris Jordan, became violent.

A video showed Mrs. Jordan telling deputies, “This is not new, he’s done this numerous times…. I can’t tell you how many things he’s busted and broken, destroying things in fits of anger” and she […]

Full Story...

It’s no secret that John Kasich wants to run for president — again. He can’t admit that now because he’s running for re-election, and that’s like asking Ohioans for their votes but telling them you have NO PLANS to serve the full term. So his allies (none more vociferous and vocal than The Columbus Dispatch) are talking a lot about his potential run and the mandate he’s seeking and making all sorts of noises about what a fine nation we’d have if only Kasich’s policies were in place.

To run, he needs to get re-elected governor. He also […]

Full Story...

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel told the Canton Repository that he wakes up every day and wonders “how we can create an environment for a vibrant and growing economy. One of the main challenges we face as a state, as the baby boomers retire, we are seeing a shortage of skilled workers in many important fields.”

He made the comments while touring Brown Mackie College, a private, for-profit school.

Josh is a huge fan of for-profit educational endeavors, regardless of whether or not they turn out quality students or spend public money wisely. And some of those for-profit endeavors are […]

Full Story...

In today’s Akron Beacon Journal, Doug Livingston managed to do what the state auditor, state superintendent of public instruction, member of State Board of Education of Ohio and the governor have not: Exposed hiring, financial and political irregularities at charter schools affiliated with Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish-born Islamic cleric.

Among the major findings:

Ohio taxpayers paid $914 million to Gulen-affiliated charter schools last year and scholl officials used much of the money to hire Turkish teachers and administrators with questionable credentials. The Gulen schools have expanded In Ohio, despite state audits dating back to 2002 that found thousands of public […]

Full Story...

We have told you before that Gov. Kasich’s mouthpiece, Rob Nichols, has a reputation for NOT telling the truth. The flap of the week is playing out alongside the ongoing trial of Ben Suarez, the North Canton businessman accused of asking politicians for political favors, then illegally laundering campaign contributions to them.

US Rep. Jim Renacci and Treasurer Josh Mandel have been getting the bulk of the bad press but Kasich finds himself in the hot seat over Nichols’ initial denial of involvement, and his claim that the administration made it clear it could not help Suarez.

But the governor’s own legal […]

Full Story...

Matthew Blair, a Dayton-area teacher who said he personally witnessed grade tampering at a charter school affiliated with the Turkish Gulen movement, is asking for an investigation after he learned that the scandal was apparently covered up by the state agency that is supposed to police charter schools.

In an email sent Monday to members of State Board of Education of Ohio, Mr. Blair said he witnessed exposed wiring, mold in the school building and school administrators tampering with standardized tests.

Rather than look in the matter, Ohio’s top education officials launched a phony investigation, complete with instructions to those […]

Full Story...