It should come as a shock to absolutely no one that the guy y'all elected governor is following the Right Wing Playbook to the letter. Actually, it's the updated Seventh Edition of the Right Wing Playbook, with a forward on Vindictive Action and Teacher Humiliation written specifically for Gov. Ducey by his friends and masters at the Goldwater Institute.
There are several exciting chapters to this playbook, including:
• Chapter I: When the Law Doesn't Match the Ideology, Just Ignore The Law. This is an exciting new approach to pesky laws that were probably written back when Democrats roamed Arizona. The strategy used to be if you didn't like a law, you should demonize it and try to get it repealed or changed. Now, just pretend it doesn't exist.
This bold stroke was first used by a handful of members of the Arizona State Legislature. After stealing money from the public schools for years to help pay for tax breaks for the wealthy, the lawmakers were aghast when, first, the schools had the nerve to ask for the money that the State Constitution says is due them, and then, second, when the Commie courts had the nerve to side with the schools (as though the people at the courts don't know from whence their paychecks come).
The legislators first tried to be nice, explaining that since they had given away all the money in tax breaks, they simply couldn't afford to pay the schools what was legally theirs, so let's just forget about it. When the unreasonably stubborn courts said "Huh-uh!," the legislators came up with a new idea. Every time the courts told the Legislature that the schools were owed $336 million immediately and probably another billion dollars down the road, the Republican lawmakers just put their hands over their ears and said "Nyah! Nyah! Nyah! Nyah" over and over and over again.
Pretending the school-money issue doesn't exist has worked so well, Ducey has now adopted the strategy. Even though Arizona state law clearly prohibits "companies" like Uber and Lyft from providing what amounts to taxi service without meeting any of the legal criteria for taxi service, Ducey has, from on high, declared that the state of Arizona will ignore those laws in the name of "entrepreneurship."
Ducey quite boldly said that the state will ignore those laws until the Legislature gets around to either re-writing them or getting rid of them altogether. One law no one can ignore forever is the law of probability. If you have unregistered, unlicensed and un- or under-insured drivers giving people rides for money, something bad is going to happen. And when it does, I hope Ducey's name is on the lawsuit that follows.
•Chapters II through VI: How To Squeeze the Last Drop of Blood Out of Public School Teachers. Public school teachers are evil. You could have an entire season of "Sleepy Hollow" with public-school teachers as the villains. They don't have the common decency to vote for the people who are slashing their income, threatening their job security, and questioning their integrity—all in the name of making a few political points with the Tea Party Clampetts of the world.
For years now, the haters at Goldwater Institute have been waging open warfare against teachers, cops, firefighters, and just about everybody else who didn't belong to a fraternity in college. In truth, Ducey probably thinks that teachers are beneath his notice, but in order to keep the Overlords at Goldwater happy, he'll join in on the bloodbath.
•Chapter VII: One Rich Donor is Worth 10,000 of Those People. It's more convenient, too, since the Rich Donor lives right down the street, while Those People live way down the hill.
•Chapter IX: School Choice. Be it known that Ducey is in favor of parents sending their children to the school of their choice. This, of course, is the same as my being in favor of people being allowed to breathe. This isn't the Jim Crow South. Arizonans have long held the right to the send their kids to whatever school they wanted. However, when the governor says that, what he means is that he wants Arizonans to be able to send their kids to the school of their choice and have YOU pay for it.
That should offend the crap out of self-proclaimed fiscal conservatives, but for some reason, it doesn't.
The latest nonsense involves a plan to seize school buildings from public districts and hand them over to charter schools at little or no cost. This, of course, is against the law, but for that, you can just refer back to Chapter I.
When discussing some of the governor's plans, official mouthpiece Daniel Scarpinato—who used to have credibility, but now just has a high-paying job—said, "We still have to flush out the details."
Well, first of all, details are fleshed out, but then again, considering the subject matter, perhaps "flushed" is the right word, after all.