I was talking to a family member last night who lives across the street from a high school campus in suburban Denver. He used to go running on the track at the facility in the mornings.
“They have brought in tractors and have completely torn out the grass on all the athletic fields to re-sod them. The fields were perfectly fine and otherwise well maintained,” he said. “This has to be a multi-million dollar project, and it’s all for nothing. Where are they getting that kind of money? I thought local governments were broke.”
Actually, YOU are paying for this stuff, dear federal taxpayer. This is money that was allocated during the last federal bailout that was not spent on crisis needs, and is now finding a home in whatever pork projects locals desire, no matter how ludicrous.
They’ve outsourced education to YouTube and now they are on a spending spree. And they want multiples more money than the money they are currently in the process of lighting on fire for the next academic year.
When schools shut down this spring, Congress sent them $31 billion — nearly half its annual schools outlay — for sanitation and online learning, even though students weren’t in schools to theoretically contaminate them and online learning barely happened for millions of children. The vast majority of this money has not even reached schools yet.
Nevertheless, the Wall Street Journal reports that education special interests are demanding, through their Democrat representatives, nearly half a trillion in additional deficit spending for the fall without requiring schools to operate. Yes, you read that right: Democrats want nearly $430 billion extra to put kids in the equivalent of Khan Academy online math lessons. Did I mention that Khan Academy is free? And that the ask to duplicate it is 600 percent more than annual federal spending on K-12?
“There is absolutely no way that federal funds included in the next COVID relief package…will reach schools in time to open in August and September,” notes Inez Feltscher. “Due to bureaucratic inertia and the requisite multiple rounds of paperwork, new federal COVID-response funds are unlikely to reach schools before 2021.”
Even though schools haven’t spent a fraction of their existing coronavirus loot, Republicans are also on board with larding on more. They merely want to inflate federal K-12 spending by 150 percent, $105 billion. In case you were concerned that Congress isn’t spending the next generation’s money fast enough while neglecting to ensure schools prepare the nation’s young to gratefully contribute to their country, WSJ reports neither side will even require schools to operate to have their federal funds increased by several magnitudes:
“Democrats said they would strongly oppose any attempts by Republicans to make the education funding contingent on schools reopening, as the administration has proposed.
‘As a mom and a grandmother, the thought of using student safety as a bargaining chip is truly appalling,’ Sen. Patty Murray of Washington, a member of Senate Democratic leadership, told reporters Tuesday. ‘Families don’t need the federal government telling them to ignore their health or ignore public safety…because the president wants to somehow wish this virus away.’
…Administration officials have sought to condition money for schools on their plans for reopening, another push that some Republicans oppose.
‘I think schools at all levels have been impacted by what happened and so I think a lot of that support needs to not be conditioned,’ [Missouri Republican Sen. Roy] Blunt said.”
If Congress can’t stop itself from setting skyscrapers of future generations’ money on fire, the least they can do is give it to parents instead of schools that are bad at education and good at leftist proselytizing. Parents are scrambling to find any education situation for their children that makes more sense than haphazard worksheets and YouTube videos from public schools that spend an average of $17,000 per child per year and now want even more without even having to open for business like grocery stores and hospitals.
And now, Mitch McConnell, who is up for re-election, is proposing yet another round of this garbage so he can move the needle on tort reform a smidgen. It would probably be cheaper to have the federal government pick up the tab for private legal defense teams than to buy tort reform with a mountain of pork spending.
Some measure of stimulus made sense in the throes of the coronavirus, though this panic absolutely should have never happened in the first place. The damage that fear-mongering among social media Karens and corrupt politicians have wrecked this year is over $10 trillion, with most of that being rolled up in debt for future generations and paid for on the backs of the most socio-economically vulnerable.