Saturday, August 10, 2013

More On Tony Bennett's Downfall

It looks like the people who followed former State Supt. Tony Bennett from Indiana to his job as Florida Education Commissioner are being purged from Florida's Department of Education. His chief of staff, Dale Chu, left shortly after his boss announced his resignation following the release of e-mails in Indiana that showed Bennett and his staff discussing grade changes for his top political donor's charter school in Indianapolis. This week, Anna Shults and Katie Stephens both left their jobs. Another Indiana transplant, Will Krebs, is still hanging on to his job as deputy commissioner for accountability.

It also looks like Bennett learned little about discussing sensitive matters using his public e-mail account. Yesterday, the AP in Florida released a verbose e-mail he sent to former Gov. Mitch Daniels and Florida's former Gov. Jeb Bush, who founded the nonprofit education reform organization, "Excellence in Education," before talking to his actual boss, members of the state's board of education, about his plans to resign as Florida's top education official. Star political columnist Matt Tully described Bennett's bluster as being his biggest weakness. That's being polite. The guy seems a bit off to me. He tells the two that he never expected to "love" Gov. Scott the way "I do you guys" when he decided to take the Florida job. Really? That's how these guys talk to one another.

I was struck by how Bennett viewed Daniels. "For four years I tried to serve you ,Gov. Daniels in a way that showed the world that you were the best damn governor in the world," Bennett wrote. The last time I checked Indiana's Superintendent of Education was an independently-elected constitutional officer. Bennett's reference to serving Daniels in "world" terms sounds a bit too Illuminati for my comfort. Throwing in the fact that the other recipient of the e-mail is an ex-governor member of the Bush family near the top of the New World Order food chain, the e-mail is all the more creepy. He never formally worked for Bush, but you would never know that reading Bennett's e-mail. He speaks of the results in Indiana as validating "our efforts." "Frank Sinatra sings, 'I did it my way,'" Bennett writes. "Well we pursued our path to reform 'Doing it your way," Bennett continued. "God I'm glad we did!"

Bennett tells Daniels and Bush that he is sharing with him his plans to tender his resignation to Gov. Scott later that day in "strictest confidence" as if nobody else is reading his e-mails. He closes by saying, "I am here to serve if needed." Hint, help me find a new job to serve my true masters.


Flogger said...

I am not sure what Tony Bennett's goal was after reading his E-Mail except to re-affirm his loyalty to Daniels and Bush. I also caught that sentence where Bennett is hoping for a seat on a life boat, by implication he wants seats for his family too.

The whole idea IMHO is to push the Privatization Agenda of Education and have the tax payers pick up the tab. Socialize the cost and Privatize the profits.

Bennett does not address the cause of his downfall or his own responsibility.

Greg Wright said...

When I served on Tony’s School Board advisory committee, I found most of his ideas to be sound and well thought out. Prior to the election, I heard speak at a Tea Party meeting where he was unsuccessful at defending Common Core. He seemed very surprised that the Tea Party did not support Common Core and seemed to be unprepared to defend his position in front of Conservatives. I believe that the Tea Party was ultimately responsible for his defeat. They did not like his ISTA Union Organizer opponent, Glenda Ritz; but, they liked common Core even less. Indiana’s GOP establishment needs to keep that in mind as they evaluate Common Core. Apparently the Tea Party is taking notes. said...

obsequious |əbˈsēkwēəs|
obedient or attentive to an excessive or servile degree:

fawning |ˈfôniNG, ˈfän-|
displaying exaggerated flattery or affection;

sycophant |ˈsikəfənt, -ˌfant|
a person who acts obsequiously toward someone important in order to gain advantage.