“Let’s get out of our own way and make Kentucky the leading example to our Nation of what things can be like when Liberty is our first priority.”– CZ
In all of our pursuits, “Who’s That Candidate”, from the presentation of our content to the activities in which we are involved or promote, we focus solely on protecting and advancing the sacred principle of Individual Freedom.
We view EVERYTHING through the foundational principle of Individual Freedom because it is the singular principle upon which our Country was founded. All of the Liberties that we enjoy and that our Constitution was written to safeguard, extend from individual freedom.
It is the HUB of Freedom’s wheel. As important as it is, the first priority of “Who’s That Candidate”, is to present solutions that are focused on protecting and advancing the sacred principle of Individual Freedom.
Remember, a gilded cage may be safe but it is still a cage.
It is not true FREEDOM.
Tax Freedom: The Pillar of Liberty
Any entity, which can exercise control over our finances and our health, has at its disposal the means of absolute control over the individual and thus Society as a whole. Our intent in this policy is to address the control exercised over us through the use of tax laws. The government would like to cushion the emotional blow by referring to it as the “Tax Code”, but it is Law, and do not be misled, it is ultimately enforced through the threat of violence. And although we mentioned the subject of governmental control over our health, we will leave that for another time.
Please remember, here at “Who’s That Candidate”, we view all of our topics and solutions through the foundational principle of Individual Liberty. This is the singular principle upon which our Country was founded. All of the Civil Liberties which we enjoy and which our Constitution was written to safeguard, extend from this single core principle. While it is an important consideration, the first priority of “Who’s That Candidate”, when writing about solutions, is not to make things safe, our solutions focus on protecting the sacred principle of Individual Liberty. We are in complete agreement with Benjamin Franklin’s opinion on this matter, when he famously penned, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety”.
The title of this policy is TAX Freedom and we would like to start by saying, the ideas we are about to propose may appear very counterintuitive at first glance, but if you will take the time to think through what we propose, we believe you will understand the solutions and how they can benefit both us as individuals and our State. It will benefit us as individuals because it will eliminate governmental leverage over our financial lives. Not only this but it will eliminate a fundamental means whereby politicians manipulate the system for self-enrichment. It will also benefit our State by making us extremely attractive to outside Business Investment, which will provide jobs and reduce the need for government financial assistance for our citizens.
Abolish Corporate Tax
We stated above that what we propose may seem counterintuitive and we will start with the toughest. It is this. Corporations do not pay taxes. Bold statement but absolutely true. For corporations taxes are an overhead budget item and are, year over year, incorporated into the price of their products or services. Thus taxes are passed along to consumers. There is simply no way to force them to pay taxes. NONE. Most Corporations, but not all, pay out most of their revenue in overhead, wages, bonuses, and shareholder dividends. There are almost no companies in the world that have profits, which are so great, that the money accumulates faster than it can be put back out the door. Facebook and Microsoft are two extremely rare examples. With the exception of these extremely rare few, the money that is left in an “account” that can be “taxed”, is used for future capital expenditures. And though they may write a check to the government this year for those “taxes” it is then incorporated into the price of the product next year. In other words, by taxing this money that is future building projects, business development, and job creation, we stymie these companies’ ability to be more productive, which has a depressive effect on our economy and job availability. As hard as it seems for some people to understand, corporations are not individual persons that are getting rich. But what about the “obscene” pay that CEOs and executive staff get paid who operate these mega-corporations? In most companies, if we took all of their salaries and their bonuses away and redistributed it to all of the remaining employees, it would amount to less than a nickel raise for each member of their respective workforces. Now, we understand that this is an extremely simplistic treatment of the subject, but we contend that it is an accurate assessment of the subject, as a whole. All overhead in business is passed downstream and taxes are part of the overhead. The only people that really and truly pay taxes are the workers (blue collar, white collar, and Executives) and shareholders, which pay income tax, and then the consumer who pays in the form of sales tax. As we said before, there is no real way to get Corporations to actually pay taxes unless you can figure out a way to keep them from incorporating taxes into their cost of doing business. That is an unrealistic goal based on misguided ignorance of business operation itself. So then the real question is, why do we tax them at all? This is the reason. Because taxing them provides cover for politicians to enrich themselves. Complicated tax codes are the tall weeds that they can move around in and it gives cover to their dirty deeds.
Make Property Tax Illegal
At this point, we would also like to mention property taxes. We don’t really believe there is much that needs to be said on this subject. If you believe you own your property, stop paying taxes on it and see who really owns it. To say you really own something you must have absolute control over its possession. The government holds that position, not you. Property taxes leave the property “owner” in an extremely vulnerable, submissive, and coercible position, to the government. It is one thing to place your property in a position of collateral by choice and a completely different thing if it is being placed in a position of collateral for the purposes of coercion, by a government, to make you act in a manner it deems appropriate.
Abolish State Income Tax
Last, we advocate for ending State income tax. We know from the examples set by multiple States, which have already switched, it has had a positive effect on their States. Our neighbor to the south, Tennessee, has enjoyed this tax freedom for a long time.
Replace all with Uniform Consumption Taxes
We said all of this to set up the idea that we are going to ask you to support. And it is this. We want you to support wiping out the complexity of our state income and property tax system and turning to a total end-user consumption tax system for the State of Kentucky. We also want you to advocate, through your vote, to exempt businesses from paying any and all taxes, including sales taxes when purchasing equipment or inventory for their businesses. So there will no longer be a building of their tax liability into their product as an overhead expenditure. All write-offs for “entertainment” for golf and corporate “business trips” to the Bahamas will cease. And for those businesses that are pass-through Corporations and Sole Proprietorships, it will greatly reduce the ability to hide personal income, because there will be no write-offs for anybody. There will be no write-offs period. Yet at the same time, it will give these individuals a higher income. They will now pay taxes based on their consumption choices. We believe history has shown that while there have been some abuses when Corporate tax levels have been reduced, they use the money for the purposes of business reinvestment. Historically tax reduction has caused new jobs to be created and more revenue to be collected by the government. And since our State government already uses tax liability reductions or tax exemption as a tool to attract new companies to our state, our legislators already know that tax exemption works. When we give these exemptions, the tax base and tax revenues increase, due to the new jobs created. What it doesn’t do when the corporations are tax-exempt, is give tax code cover for the backdoor deals that enrich legislators. This is the reason there is always a sunset clause on the tax-exempt status. They need to get back to business as usual.
Our States’ tax codes are a complicated mess. And everybody that wants to abuse it, needs it to be complicated. The more weeds there are, the easier it is to hide amongst them. The more complex the codes are, the more leverage politicians have for self-enrichment. Our tax codes and regulatory bodies “CREATE” the Lobbyists who enrich our “Representatives”. As a side note, in the near future, we will talk about regulatory bodies and how they are used to also enrich our government officials.
We recognize that making businesses tax-exempt is a radical departure from even most plans which deal with consumption, end user, and sales tax plans. Most of the problems that arise in these plans are on the business tax end and are the predominant reason some call for a flat tax instead. Our approach eliminates these problems and greatly decreases the ability of politicians to manipulate the codes for personal gain. Our proposed solution will take a monumental amount of government intrusion, out of our lives. Our solution places control of our taxes into our hands based on our consumption choices.
Last, for those who would argue that it might not be revenue neutral. And? I’m pretty sure we can all agree that if our state government will quit spending money on crap it shouldn’t be spending money on, we won’t need as much money. But that is only if we concede that it won’t be revenue neutral. We do not concede this point at all. It is our belief that it will increase tax revenue while spreading the pain more equitably across everyone.
Now we would like for you to honestly ask yourself how attractive Kentucky would be to Companies if we simply do not tax them. By being the most Business friendly State in the Country, can we go from being a net taker of Federal money to a self-sufficient State that can deal with its own social needs internally? Are we so desperate to make sure these Corporations are taxed, that we will cause ourselves to be less free from the government? Will Kentucky continue to cut off its own nose to spite its face? Since there is no way you can prove businesses pay taxes right now and for the few exceedingly rare instances such as Facebook and Microsoft, that have massive cash reserves which they can’t possibly spend on their businesses, is it worth the negatives that our present tax system brings into politics? When it comes to business, our tax code is just a massive paperwork money shuffle. If we eliminate these taxes, Kentucky won’t even have a postcard for taxes. For every single Kentucky resident, there will be no person dealing with the Kentucky State Department of Revenue. And businesses will just continue to do what they are already doing. As an added benefit the Department of Revenue will not need complete sections of staff and thus our State Government will need less money to operate. Here at “Who’s That Candidate”, we promote increased Liberty and personal freedom. Getting our State Government out of our wallets is the single greatest method toward achieving that goal. Let’s get out of our own way and make Kentucky the leading example to our Nation of what things can be like when Liberty is our first priority.
Education, The Pillar of Society
It is with purposeful intent we say that Education is THE Pillar of Society. With that established, we will also say, that the way in which the Public Education System has been co-opted and used in the last 50+ years, has made it the most destructive force in the United States of America. Pillars are supports for structures built on top of them. If they are strong, straight, and true, they can be a firm foundation for what they support. But if they are flawed, the structures that rest atop them will ultimately fail. This is presently happening in American society. The Educational Pillar has been co-opted by the radical left and is being used for indoctrination in such a way as to undermine the core principles upon which our Country was founded. The American society, which has historically espoused individual freedom coupled with self-reliance and which has been able to create the greatest good for the world, is failing.
Does our Country have great sins in its history? Without equivocation, it does. But we must not throw out the proverbial baby with the bath water. We can think of it in this manner. Jesus’ principles of salvation and the principles for the treatment of our fellow human beings are perfect. But the people, for whose benefit they are meant, are not. You do not discount the teachings of Christ simply because the people, who are the representatives of those teachings, mess them up and appear to be hypocrites. The Radical Left, much like Satan, would like to use the failures of the practitioners to attack the principles themselves. The claim is that the principles are failing. That sentiment is tantamount to claiming that because people steal, it is the principle of not stealing that is actually wrong and needs to be changed. Do not give in to people who would say that such a simple rendering of this argument is naïve and that the issue is much more complex and, therefore, can’t be explained in such simple terms. It can, and it is that simple.
As education, beginning in large part with the now infamous 1925 Scopes Trial in Tennessee has been used to great effect to tear down America’s religious heritage, so also education is now being used to attack the Principle of Individual Freedom and Liberty, in all of its other forms. Individual Freedoms and Liberties are being attacked in the areas of the Free Market, Free Speech, Freedom of Assembly (especially on College Campuses), etc. Through our present education system, our children are being indoctrinated into becoming an Army for the destruction of the very system which created the greatest amount of freedom and which has also been the greatest agent for good in the world, only exceeded by Christ himself.
So, we may look at what is presently happening in education and believe it to be horrific but this is just the culmination of an agenda. An agenda, whose primary purpose is in fact, to break down American Society. For many center-right Republicans, this may very well be the time that they are waking up. Waking up and realizing that those who cried out and railed against the small seemingly insignificant actions taken by the left in Education were not just making much ado about nothing. They were not just overreacting. They are not just far-right radicals, as the media has painted them and they are not Domestic Terrorists, as the FBI has called them. They are in fact prophets, warning of a disease, which education has been used, to inject into the veins of the United States of America. For those who say this is hyperbole: Ladies and gentlemen, your track record so far leaves little reason for anyone to listen to you any longer. Education IS in crisis in America. We are far past the idea that “if we don’t change some things, we could start seeing some real problems”. Education has been taken over by the radical far left and is being used to indoctrinate your children and grandchildren. The very real problems of which we were warned are here!
Although our state and every other State, was intended to independently control its own educational structure, The Federal Department of Education exerts enormous influence over all decisions made by the States’ Departments of Education. It does this by leveraging the money it allocates to the States. By making rules for how the States can obtain the money or threatening the withholding of monies if their guidelines are not adhered to, the Federal Department of Education has become the de facto ruler over education. In the State of Kentucky, they have done this while only inputting approximately 11.5% of Kentucky’s total budget per student. According to the “Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy”, $15,324 was spent per student in the 2018-2019 school year. This would mean that $1,762 came from Federal subsidy and leaves a balance of $13,562. Yet….the Federal Department of Education is the driver of educational policy? Really? Why?
Not only do they dictate educational policy but they are also now coupled with the powerful teacher unions across the country and are taking their cues from far-left organizations like the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers. In many instances, it is the Unions themselves who write the legislation, which is then proposed and passed by our legislatures. Reporter Lance Izumi wrote in the Washington Times that the AFT leader Randi Weingarten openly advocated for building up political power in order to enact a liberal agenda, which included promoting universal healthcare among other socialist ideas. What does that have to do with educating our children? Absolutely nothing. But Education is the conduit for a larger agenda within our Country. America is being manipulated by the “It’s for the Children” mantra. We now also see the educational system actively working toward eliminating the traditional role of the parent in their children’s education. The Washington Post’s Yaron Steinbuch reported that in Damariscotta, Maine, a town of approximately 2,300 people, a school social worker began assisting a 13-year-old girl in her gender transition and told her not to talk to her family about it. We use this example to drive home a point. This is not just happening in California or other large expansive school districts. This is not an isolated instance. This is happening at an ever-increasing rate, in small town USA. The modern education system has been co-opted and put into service as the delivery mechanism for the radical progressive Liberal disease. Using social activism in areas such as gender identity, they are creating a purposeful divide between the student and parent by not only keeping information from the parents themselves but by actively encouraging the students to do the same. But it is not only social activism. Under the guise of “science”, science itself is being destroyed. Science, whose very foundational premise is to question, is now being used to establish a new worldwide pseudoscience heterodoxy that quelches intellectual dissent or opposing opinion. This is not coming to a school near you; it is well-established in every school system across our nation. Please understand we are not talking about rank-and-file Teachers. We are talking about the Federal Department of Education, the teachers’ unions, and the radical progressive liberal administrations of local school districts. The area of greatest threat, on the local level, is our own Kentucky Department of Education and the School District Administrations. If the rank-and-file teachers do not go along, they can and have been subjected to targeted harassment attacks and their careers are threatened. This is especially true if the teacher states they are reluctant to violate their own religious conscience. Maybe it has not infected Kentucky to the extent it has in California and New York State, but make no mistake, it is here and growing. We cannot and must not compromise with those who said we were overreacting when we tried to warn of the slippery slope that we were on. We must now recreate our system here in Kentucky so that we return the power back to those who are legitimately responsible for the education of our children – their parents.
We have taken a little more time to set up this particular Policy Pillar for ”Who’s That Candidate” because we feel that parents, grandparents, and anyone who has a vested interest in the education and future of Kentucky’s children, need to understand the critical condition into which our state’s educational system has devolved. And make no mistake, Kentucky’s educational system is in this condition. The bureaucracy of our State’s educational system has been taken over by radical socialist ideology. Once a bureaucracy is under the control of this ideology, it is only a matter of time before its poison trickles down into the complete body. And to the people and politicians who still think we are radical conspiracy theorists… IT IS YOU WHO ARE A DANGER TO AMERICA AND OUR CHILDREN! And with the help of God, we will beat you at the ballot box and turn this State around to be a leading beacon of change in our country.
It is from this understanding we will make those proposals that we believe will restructure our system to facilitate the true acquisition of knowledge; teach the abilities necessary for independent critical thought and the principles of self-reliance and governance. Further, it is our intention to return educational leadership and oversight to the local parental level and empower parents to have greater control over the curriculum and the administrative processes in their children’s schools. Please take special note that we said control. We did not say input. We believe in a bottom-up and not in a top-down power structure. Government of the people, by the people, and for the people does not stop at the doors of our children’s schools. It should and will begin there. The radical left has long understood the value of capturing and controlling our educational system because they understand the battle for the future is won or lost through the education of our children. We had better quickly come to this truth. We had better come to the realization that it is also through our children that individual freedom and true Liberty will be carried forward. So, with these thoughts as the underlying foundation, we will give a basic overview of the educational proposals, which we believe will give us the foundation to recapture the hearts and minds of our future generations and will reinvigorate the cause of Individual Freedom and Liberty.
Per what seems to have become our standard mode of operation here at “Who’s That Candidate”, our Educational Proposal starts with a fundamental departure from the present system in use in our State. At the present time, our educational system is based on the collective developmental progress of the average student and it is rote in nature. We know, through a wide range of studies, that the maturation rate for each individual child can be very different. Yet, our present system in Kentucky only marginally addresses this issue and then only with the easily identifiable, developmentally challenged, or at the other end of the spectrum, the developmentally gifted. But the extremely wide “normal” maturation range of the middle causes many students to flounder and struggle. To then consider the variability between individual children and the individual subject matter that each may excel at or have a slower maturation pace in, leaves us with the easily derived conclusion, that our system is wholly inadequate, at best. That is unless your goal is not to truly maximize the potential of each individual child. If your goal is to make our educational system nothing more than a means of indoctrination, then there is no better model to be found.
In many real-world tests of educational systems that best promote the individual child’s best educational results, they all seem to revolve around a form of self-paced student-led learning models. These systems allow for identifying those areas that students naturally enjoy and excel. This system ensures there are no generalized knowledge gaps, due to slower maturation rates in a particular subject, such as mathematics or reading comprehension. Montessori and Homeschool curricula are some examples of these systems. Many stem programs also have components of the self-paced learning system. What they all have in common is a very high rate of success, when monitored properly. Students that come out of these types of systems are becoming preferred candidates in both University and work settings. These systems are demonstratively producing candidates who are more psycho-social stable; who are better able to independently problem solve; who work without a high degree of oversight and who are creative in nature.
In self-paced models, the individual talents and interests of students are more easily identified and fostered. Students work independently and are in general control over when and how long they work on a particular subject. Because of the nature in which the curriculum is written, they are in large part self-taught. The curriculum is structured in a building block model. Each block is small, easily understood, progressive, and manageable. When a student is lagging in a subject, teachers are more easily able to identify if a student is truly struggling or as a lot of us were prone to in school, we just didn’t like the subject. In either of these cases, because the rest of the students are working independently, the teacher is more freely able to work one on one, to help the struggling student. In the case of subject dislike, encourage them to not only work on the subjects they gravitate toward but each of the others as well. This system is not only greatly beneficial to the student but also a preferred system by almost all teachers who have worked with both systems. Unlike the present model, it creates a system that more closely mimics a one-to-one ratio of teacher-to-student environment. Teachers can actually teach where it is needed most. One of the most frequent complaints that teachers have is that they must manage too many students resulting in not having the time to devote to students who desperately need their individual attention. Unfortunately, the self-paced system is almost exclusively offered only in a private school setting.
We mentioned above that this educational system causes the students to basically teach themselves. Because this is a self-paced and in large part a self-taught model, critical thinking is a skill that is naturally fostered. Psychologically, being able to critically think, positively reinforces self-reliance and self-confidence. Correlatively, with a self-paced educational environment, studies suggest that there may be long-term benefits, such as much lower rates of psycho-social behavioral problems, drug use, and a higher rate of postsecondary education and career success.
We would like to go back and talk a little bit more about the individual maturation of children. The glaring elephant in the room, which our present educational model cannot address, is the difference that 9 months can make in the mental and physical maturation rate of a child. Depending on a child’s birth date, they can literally be 9 months behind in their developmental progress as compared to the oldest child in the class. Even children born in close proximity to birth dates can be very different in maturation. Without exception, every medical guide on the development of children presents normal maturation as a range and not as a definitive. With this knowledge in hand, we would like to point out a story released by NPR in August of 2017 which reported on a study from the National Bureau of Economic Research. According to this study, children who start school at an older age do better than their younger classmates and have better odds of attending college and graduating from an elite institution. The study also finds that this gap occurs not only at all socioeconomic levels but even in families. It shows an achievement gap exists between siblings who start school at a young age and their siblings who start school when they are older. David Filigo, an Economist at Northwestern University and a co-author of this study, says he was surprised because he thought high-income families would have the resources to close the gap between siblings.
With the self-paced system, a simple assessment test can show whether a child is ready to begin at the most basic level or not. In this way, the child can start when they are ready and not at some arbitrary time, defined by a 9-month time span, which can place them at a distinct cognitive and social disadvantage. Mr. Filigo also pointed out that parents are becoming more aware of this cognitive gap or what they view as the individual maturation rate of their child and are holding them back before they start their academic careers. In essence, they are red shirting their children. Red-shirting is something normally done in college athletics. It is used to give the athlete an extra developmental year before they begin playing.
As we end this portion of our comments on this age gap problem, we would like to point out that it was also shown in the study from the National Bureau of Economic Research, that children who were the youngest in their class were more likely to be involved in juvenile crime than their older classmates. Mr. Filgio states, they are not “massive differences” but they are “meaningful.”
We will now list a few other advantages of the model we propose.
- In the self-paced system, a child is never left behind because they are not put into an arbitrary class grade system. Yet at the same time, there is accountability to ensure effort and advancement toward a child’s maximum individual potential.
- All work is done in the class, eliminating the need for homework. This is a great benefit for those children who do not get encouragement and/or the fundamental educational support of their families.
- The self-paced education model takes the financial load of school supplies away from parents and the many teachers who buy class supplies out of their own pockets. The Curriculum workbooks and other necessary supplies are provided. Normal school supplies are not needed (notebooks, binders, etc.).
- Classroom setup for self-paced learning is also different than a traditional classroom. Because there is no longer a lecture style, the setup places the teachers in the middle of the room and the students around the teacher, with dividers between each student. This has been shown to greatly assist the teacher in their ability to manage the class and diminish behavioral problems.
- Because students are in their own pod workspace, without the higher outside stimuli normally associated with a traditional classroom environment, self-paced students have been shown, on average, to work faster, achieve greater academic mastery, and have a higher subject knowledge retention rate, than their contemporaries in the traditional school model.
While we have now addressed the fundamental educational model, which will put the student first and ensure that a student maximizes their individual potential, it does not address the administrative bureaucracy. It is the administrative bureaucracy that is the greatest danger to our children. As with all institutions, it is the administrative bureaucracy that provides leadership and more importantly the direction/vision for the institution. As the saying goes, “He who has the gold, makes the rules.” In this case, it is “He who controls the gold makes the rules.” This creates a dynamic where the Kentucky Department of Education and the local administrations are not subject to oversight by the parents of the children who attend public school. School Boards are becoming increasingly antagonistic toward parental input. In a private school setting the parent has much greater influence and power over the education of their children. They can vote with their wallets against the direction a school’s administration is taking. This should also be true of parental power in our Kentucky Public School System. While the public-school parent does not have the ability to vote with their wallet in the same manner as the private-school parent, we can change how monies are controlled and more importantly how the curriculum is chosen.
Maximize Individual Potential
As we stated previously a bottom-up approach is preferable to the present top-down model. And once again “Who’s That Candidate” is advocating for a structural change that returns power to the most fundamental level, which is self-government. In this case, that is the parents.
At this time parents are able to join Parent-teacher associations or other such organizations but the influence of these organizations has slowly diminished and has very little to no influence over curriculum or budgets. The general thinking is that those who are considered professionals can best make the decisions concerning the education of your children. This ideology has become so pervasive that many School District Administrators and School Boards have been emboldened to openly state that parents have no real place in the education of their children and educators should be in the purview of the administrative state alone.
We stand against this ideology. It is our strongly held belief that the very opposite is where the mechanism for decision-making should be held. Namely in the hands of the parents within any given school district. We propose that the Parent Teacher Association become the decision-making apparatus and that the Administrations and School Boards should be subject to the PTA. Policies concerning the education and the welfare of the children should and must be made by the parents of those children in concert with those teachers themselves who are involved with the children every day. The administrative apparatus of every district should in fact be only administrative in nature and tasked with carrying out those policies which have been enacted by the PTA. The administrative apparatus, in their professional capacity, can be and should be in an advisory role to the PTA.
We would like to emphasize at this time, what we are about to put forward is an extremely broad picture of our proposals for the make-up of the PTA as a governing body. The details are many and cannot be put forth in this short overview. With that caveat, we envision a PTA which is made up of parents who actively have at least one child in the local district and the child has at least 3 years left before graduation. At least one of the child’s parents must have 5 years of personal historical attachment to the State of KY. The parents who sit on this board would be picked by random generation lottery every year and the term will be for 13 months. An overlap period of one month would be implemented for the purpose of the transition. The new parents will be able to observe and learn their new roles, elect chairs, etc., before beginning to act in an official capacity. Administrative staff will be created as a permanent continuous entity in order to ensure the continuity of yearly transitions as new parents are seated, maintain official documentation, establish parent eligibility, etc.
The PTA and The School Board
This leaves us to discuss School Boards. They are extremely political in nature and all too often are a position sought for this very reason. A School board is very powerful in its ability to affect generations of kids and their future thought processes and belief systems. This power comes from its ability to choose curriculum, implement policy, and mandate rules and restrictions. As we previously pointed out, the relationship between School Boards and parents is deteriorating to such a degree that it can now be called an antagonistic relationship. This is especially true in areas of values and belief systems that parents possess, as well as what parents believe state-sponsored education’s role concerning these issues should be. For us, we believe the left-liberal ideologues have actively targeted this political position for acquisition specifically because of the power and impact it can have. But it does have a role in our proposal.
We propose that the School Boards basically function in the same manner as they do presently, with one notable exception. Everything they do now is subjected to the PTA for ratification. This would include budgets, curriculum choices, all policies, school paint colors, and everything. In our way, the power structure within the school district emanates from those that have the greatest investment in the school system, their children. By making the parents the source of power, they no longer have to beg and plead with administrations and school boards to hear them. They must hear them. Obviously, this is a simple outline of our proposal and in no way addresses the many details that are needed to bring this about. It will require much work and time and cannot be approached lightly. We fully believe that we cannot continue with the present model for two major reasons. First, it has been proven over time to be extremely inefficient and does not maximize the student’s individual potential. Second, it ensures that the power resides where it rightfully should, in the hands of the parents. No governmental agency should in any way supersede the parent in the decision-making processes surrounding their children.
Integrity, The Pillar for Governance
The founders of the United States of America believed that there is a necessary role for a strictly limited governance. The purpose of such governance is to secure individual rights. While not anarchists, the founders understood that governmental power tends to overstep its rightful limits, such that checks on power and balances across different power structures were built into the American system of government. These checks and balances included broad Constitutionally recognized individual rights, well-identified and specifically limited roles for government, with governmental power split into executive, legislative, and judicial functions. Additionally, all state and federal governance was intended to be led by publicly elected legislators, following transparently fair electoral processes free of corruption and open to the highest levels of public scrutiny. Citizens serving in government must be held to the highest standards of personal and public integrity, fairness, transparency, and accountability. The process itself by which citizens are elected to office must also be held to the highest standards of integrity, fairness, transparency, and accountability.
The term “republican” today is commonly associated with one of the two major political parties. But the term more properly represents an ideal form of representative government that neither major political party today adequately represents or even strives to achieve. The fundamental goal of the Who’s That Candidate project is to re-establish ideal republicanism within the Republican party, to “put the Republic back into the Republican Party”. The first step in re-establishing the republican ideal is to promote the highest levels of integrity both for our citizen legislature and for the process by which they are elected.
The American society, which has historically espoused individual freedom coupled with self-reliance, and which has been able to create the greatest good for the world, is failing. Part of that failure is due to a lack of individual integrity among various elected and unelected government officials. Too many see elected office as a means to create a fiefdom of corruption and personal profit, while abdicating responsibility for legislative governance. All too often, unelected insiders within the bureaucracy or other “hired out” vendors have assumed the role of governance that properly should be the responsibility only of elected officials.
Corruption also creeps into current governance via grandiose ambitions of wealthy individuals seeking to usurp democratic processes in order to stamp their own personal visions and schemes onto broader society. Instead of actually winning the hearts of minds of people with compelling arguments, they instead subvert and undermine real democracy wherever and however they find the back-channels to do so, whether through bribery, blackmail, censorship, election fraud, or propaganda disguised as “news.” Whether these corrupt individuals seek elected office themselves or simply manipulate other elected officials, the end result is a gross distortion of genuine public will bent to a particularly biased reinventing of reality, contorted toward whatever pie-in-the-sky or megalomaniacal dreams the big spender wishes to implement.
Even worse today, we have turned over the entire process of “public” elections to unelected private companies managing a complex network of electronic devices without adequate transparency or accountability. The process of “winning an election” today is less about the people having their say and increasingly about insider corruption, of who is best positioned to game a complex system and get away with it. And even when and where a given election might be legitimate, the current systems provide no transparent process to quickly and easily confirm the legitimacy. In Kentucky, we can’t even get a list after an election of who actually voted, as such information is deemed “proprietary” by the unelected vendors managing the techno-babble that substitutes for an open, free, and fair process. And since there are more registered voters on Kentucky’s voter rolls than there are citizens residing within the state, ample means exist to exploit a system replete with gaping opportunities for corruption and fraud. No process of election can ever be considered as transparently fair, just, and legitimate without meeting the highest standards of transparency and accountability, and current election processes in Kentucky utterly fail to meet such high standards.
An ideal Republic strives for an entirely open, transparent, and fair process for public elections. This in turn allows voters to focus on electing citizens of the highest moral stature, to represent them with honesty and integrity. The Who’s That Candidate project supports a legislative agenda focused on securing liberty, securing individual rights. Elitist agenda, pork-barrel special projects, grandiose schemes of public works, corrupt fiefdoms, and social engineering have no rightful place in Republican governance.
Free, Fair, and Transparent Elections
As part of our Integrity Pillar, we support returning all public elections to an entirely paper-based, hand-counted process. There is simply no secure or transparent electronic or computer-based system of voting, counting votes, or managing of the electoral process. Any electronic system is simply too easily subject to fraud and “gaming of the system” and thus ultimately fails to meet the highest standards of transparency and accountability. In contrast, voting with pen and paper followed by an open, transparent processes of human-counted votes (open to public observation and the potential for recounts) must be the required gold standard for an accountable election process. List or rolls of registered voters must be accurately maintained and made publicly available at all times before and after elections. A complete list of citizens voting in any election must be made publicly available in a reasonable time frame immediately following any election.
Transparency of Government Processes and Records
Secrecy within government is a toxic pool for growing a culture of corruption and fraud. Therefore, government integrity requires a completely open and public process for all government activities. There must be easy and open public access to all government records, contracts, minutes of meetings, and essentially any and all government documents. Government by its very nature cannot ever be a secretive or proprietary process. Transparency and openness encourages integrity and discourages corruption and malfeasance.
Integrity of Elected Officials as the Basis for a Renewed Republic
The Who’s That Candidate project advocates a process for selecting responsible, just, and worthy Republican candidates for the Kentucky General Assembly. This process must originate in the local communities the candidate must serve, they must be identified and selected by their own community as appropriate individuals trusted and admired by their neighbors and peers within their local communities. We advocate choosing individuals who will adhere strictly to the Who’s That Candidate Policy Pillars, and who will uphold the highest standards for personal integrity, honesty, and responsibility.