Archive for the ‘Americans for Prosperity’ Category

Using Tragedy to Push Voucher Schemes

January 9, 2012

It looks like anything is fair game for anti-public school fanatics. Peggy Venable, who directs the Texas office of (David and Charles Koch-funded) Americans for Prosperity, put up this odious Twitter post last week after police shot and killed an eighth-grade student in Brownsville:

AFP-Texas tweeted the same thing.

“School choice,” of course, is code for private school vouchers. During the 2011 Texas legislative session, Venable’s group supported a radical voucher scheme that could have diverted billions of dollars from the state’s public schools to private and religious schools. The bill would actually have had the state of Texas (not counting local or federal funds) pay more for a student to attend a private school than a public school. Venable was also thrilled that the Legislature slashed more than $5 billion in funding for public schools from the current two-year budget.

Now she is using the horrifying and tragic death of a junior high school student to push her anti-public education agenda. How cold and shameful.


Politics and Curriculum Standards in Texas

June 29, 2010

Gov. Rick Perry has been doing all he can to solidify his support among far-right pressure groups. This weekend (July 2-3), for example, Gov. Perry will be speaking at the Americans for Prosperity Foundation’s Texas Defending the American Dream Summit in Austin. The governor will join speakers such as Tim Phillips, president of the AFP Foundation; a number of nationally known writers, actors and entertainers on the right; and Joe the Plumber, the guy who became something of a political celebrity during last year’s presidential campaign.

On the agenda is the usual heavy dose of right-wing paranoia, including workshops such as “Recognizing Media Bias: Analyzing the news,” “How to Fight Biased Media: What to do when you spot bias or errors in the media.” Another panel is called “From Tea Parties to Taking Back America,” as if someone (guess who) has somehow stolen America from its rightful owners.

Here was a panel that especially caught our eye: “Texas Textbook Wars & Curriculum Controversies.” Seeing that panel topic at an AFP confab is hardly a surprise to us. During the long debate at the Texas State Board of Education over proposed social studies curriculum standards, one of the voices in support of the changes coming from the board’s far-right faction was Peggy Venable, executive director of the Texas office of Americans for Prosperity (AFP).