For all my Florida ultra-liberal friends, I have just the ticket for you, an event you can salivate over, a chance to go babble political correctness with birds of a feather.
South Florida leaders have been invited to a “Community Conversation” in Miami, a panel discussion sponsored by an outfit called The Good Government Initiative, associated with a local university. The topic is whether “money in politics corrupts absolutely”. I can just imagine what this is all about, and what the panel will say about how business corrupts politics.
Let’s be Sherlock Holmes and see if we can predict what this “Conversation” is all about. First, we look at the people involved. We have a journalist from a liberal newspaper, a Democrat politician from Broward, a lawyer who was a former politician, the person who runs Florida New Majority (a collection of labor unions, minorities, unemployed workers, and “community groups”), and a business etiquette expert. It’s hosted by a former Democrat county commissioner, and moderated by a trial lawyer. This group’s first initiative included Dan Gelber (who had the most liberal voting record in the Florida House), and a former ambassador to Jamaica.
The President of this “Good Government Initiative” has degrees in social welfare, won a Conservationist of the Year Award, and became “committed to social activism after attending a civil rights demonstration”. She is a petition-gatherer who wants to increase government salaries and believes term-limits won’t work. Her “proudest achievements” included killing an airport at Homestead Air Base, and passing an “ordnance which guaranteed civil rights to gay and lesbian citizens.” She wants University of Miami students to be involved and to “play a role”.
The group’s planned classes will be taught by “local government budget and finance directors”, and maybe UM faculty members from the Schools of Education and History. Knowing this, we can all feel relieved that “students” in the group’s programs will certainly receive well-balanced and unbiased instruction of how political decisions should be made.
Here’s what’s disturbing: The purpose of this whole initiative is to “train elected officials” and political leaders from Palm Beach/Broward/Dade, and provide “undergraduate education”. There’s nothing wrong with that. The Left has the same right to conduct political activities as the Right. But this effort smacks of say-one-thing-and-do-another.
Intellectual dishonesty creeps in if such activities are hidden behind a false façade of unbiased legitimacy. This whole venture makes me wonder what brand of “good government” training will be dispensed. Hmmm. Sounds to me more like an attempt to instruct politicians and would-be electeds in the ways and thinking of the far Left, pretending it’s unbiased education while actually it’s leftist political indoctrination by special-interest people.
As a guy who fights for political strength for Florida’s businesses, I admit I could be wrong about this, but I’ve seen it happen too many times at other colleges. The Left likes working with universities, where they can recruit. The future will reveal what these people are truly up to. The telltale signs will be whether the people who teach their seminars harbor lopsided political persuasions, the nature of topics that will be covered, and the messages the instructors instill in the minds of those they teach. We’ll see.
But like the Wizard of Oz pulling levers and turning wheels behind the curtain, the evidence so far is that this group’s public patter is different than their private mission.
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