New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg — the antigun, anti-big-gulp, billionaire nanny stater — is back, now trying to force the good people of Colorado to give up our God-given right to underfund K-12 education.
Why won’t he just leave us alone?
Wasn’t it enough when Bloomberg got in the middle of our post-Aurora legislative fight over gun-grabbing laws that wouldn’t exactly grab guns, but would make it slightly harder for an insane killer to shoot down dozens of people? And then he had the nerve to big-foot his way — you know, by writing a check — into the recent debate over whether the “gunnies” (Jon Caldara’s word) should kick out a few offending state senators and turn our state into a government-by-endless-recall coupocracy.
By now you’ve probably heard the latest. Bloomberg’s foundation has contributed $1.05 million to a group supporting Amendment 66, which, if passed, would add about a $1 billion a year to help fix crumbling schools, provide all-day kindergarten, ensure that kids in poor neighborhoods have access to preschool, enforce education reforms and add lots of other zany, government-overreach ideas — paid for by raising taxes — to improve education throughout the state.
Amendment 66 has nothing to do with guns, but, still, you know how these people are. They don’t even want teachers to have guns in the classroom, and, for all we know, they might have that hidden in the law somewhere, near the part about making students take gym unarmed.
In Colorado, we don’t like outsiders telling us what to do — even if the state is so full of outsiders that 11 counties (the insiders?) are voting on whether to secede.
We know we don’t like outsiders because that’s what John Hickenlooper told USA Today. Here’s the quote: “Colorado is a state where people like to be resourceful themselves and solve their own problems. They don’t really like outside organizations meddling in their affairs — and maybe the NRA gets a pass on that — but probably not a bad idea.”
OK, so maybe he was talking about the possible recall of Sen. Evie Hudak and her votes on guns, not about Amendment 66 or any other ballot measure, which, of course, routinely draw outside money. And maybe he did say that the NRA gets a pass on gun bills, so you could say, I guess, that the NEA should get a pass on education bills. But Hick must still be a hypocrite because we’ve got the sound bite and shouldn’t the governor be responsible for all sound bites, even if they’re not actually on topic?
The liberal argument is that if you’re against Bloomberg and the Gates Foundation and even one of the Waltons giving money, it’s hard to make the argument that money is speech or that there shouldn’t be limits on election funding or that giving money doesn’t seem so dangerous when it’s your guys who are being funded.
The liberal media definitely made a big deal about Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino billionaire who gave $92.8 million (along with his wife) to Republicans in 2012, funded Newt Gingrich basically by himself and just recently said (in what I could swear was a Tom Tancredo bomb-Mecca inspired speech) that we should nuke the Iranian desert as a warning.
He then said this, according to a video made at the speech: “Then you say, ‘See! The next one is in the middle of Tehran. So, we mean business. You want to be wiped out? Go ahead and take a tough position and continue with your nuclear development.’ ”
OK, Adelson wants to bomb Iran. But he didn’t say it in Colorado, did he? Only Tancredo would say something like that in Colorado.
Somewhere, though, the anti-Bloomberg message gets in trouble. He’s not exactly a friend of the teachers’ unions, and he is a big fan of education reform. In his latest spat with the New York teachers’ union, Bloomberg said that a union endorsement in a New York mayor’s race — in which the union never endorsed him — was “almost a kiss of death.”
And the union guy replied that “most candidates would rather be the victim of a zombie attack than get a Michael Bloomberg endorsement.”
So, why is Bloomberg getting involved in education in Colorado. Maybe because people across the country are closely watching this vote. Or maybe just because he can. In fact, he can write a million-dollar check every week for the rest of his life. And, yeah, it’s even possible that he’s written checks before and that no one, pre-guns, made a big deal out of it.
Or could it be that he’s just putting this whole zombie-attack concept to the ultimate test.
Here’s what we do know: The pro-66 people get a million bucks; the anti-66 people get free media.
And there’s this: It is being suggested that some people in Colorado are dumb enough to vote against Amendment 66 just because Bloomberg hopes we vote for it. If so, we need that money for education even more badly than I thought.