How to make sense of Governor Kasich

Does John Kasich really have a plan? I’ve heard some pretty smart folks call him an idiot- and these are people who have to actually deal with him. Some have called him a mad man- as in mad – crazy. But maybe he’s taking his orders out of an uninspired book I read years ago- by a “Mad Man” as in Madison Avenue- Jean-Marie Dru’s Disruption: Overturning Conventions and Shaking Up the Marketplace (Adweek Magazine Series)

The premise was (from Amazon’s Review:

replacing business-as-usual advertising and marketing philosophies with radical new thinking. He contends that this shift in thought will better position new and established products, brands, and services for the competitive battles to come.

Kasich models himself as “not business as usual” kinda guy- even though he’s straight out of a business as usual business that was thinking totally upside down- the “investment banking” crew on Wall Street thought nothing of turning true common sense investment practices into a winner-take-all casino- where chutzpah was what separated the men from the boys.

So, without thinking about the long-term implications of things- we have passed some really crazy throw the baby out with the bath water laws like SB5, halfway through the voter photo ID rule and now- the idea of parents taking over failing schools:

Ohio Gov. John Kasich plans to tuck a “parent trigger” provision into his budget bill.

That would mean schools in the bottom 5 percent of the state’s performance index for three straight years would be eligible for a parent take over.

Ohio has 3,446 public schools serving 1.78 million students.

The California Teachers Association, a union representing 325,000 educators, has some advice for Ohio: deliberate carefully, consult with those who have dealt with the practical side of takeovers, make sure the process for takeovers is transparent and provide opportunities for open debate.

Parent Revolution, an organization that successfully lobbied for the law change last year in California, helped parents at McKinley Elementary in Compton petition for the take over.

The school district challenged the petition; the parents sued over the constitutionality of the district’s petition signature verification process; and the California State Board of Education has yet to finalize regulations, according to Parent Revolution spokeswoman Linda Serrato.

State Rep. John Patrick Carney, D-Columbus, said he is concerned about Ohio being used as a guinea pig.

“Really, in Compton, we don’t know what the result will be,” he said. Passionate parents may want to take over a school but may lack expertise on how to run it, Carney said on Wednesday.

via California only state with law allowing parents to take over schools.

With a cursory examination of this idea- I’ve got to wonder- what happens when the parents that take over the school- no longer have kids in the school? Keeping community groups engaged and working on something is easy when the initial outrage is there- but the long run is difficult. How is this really a solution? Or is it only another tool to Poke the Box (as Seth Godin calls his latest book) and elicit some kind of emotional response to force people to talk about a very real problem- schools that suck.

Again- Poke the Box is another guru book suggesting you might not actually have to make the change- just force the issue to the forefront. But the problem with this is in business things can change on a dime- in law, it’s almost set in stone- and hard to change.

Kasich may be brighter than we think- and actually opening some avenues for change with his prodding- the problem is his blind and loyal following in the State House- isn’t so bright. We generally elect affable people who aren’t exactly rocket scientists- otherwise we wouldn’t have had to go back to the ballot to change the State Constitution which they allowed to actually write in the exact locations of the Casinos for example.

The long term problems that this kind of disruptive strategy (if in fact it is a conscious strategy and not the rantings of an idiot savant) could be huge for Ohio- and that’s generally why laws are debated and discussed more than what we’ve seen (SB5 was passed very quickly and the government ID for voting even faster).

There are many who are being alienated by Kasich shown by his quick rise in disapproval ratings. Yet, smart thinkers are already planning to use these shakeups to experiment with some new ideas. For example, the idea of charter universities- may enable our current universities to do an end run around some of the accreditation policies that are making it incredibly difficult to hire is some tech fields- for instance the people who know the most about Social Media and web development don’t have masters or doctorates required to teach in Ohio- and aren’t interested in the low pay or slow pace of academia when they can be working in the field with no degree at all. Charter universities may be able to hire these people in teaching laboratories where they can teach and do at the same time.

If you start looking at John Kasich’s actions through the filter of Disruption or Poke the Box- it may help you to make sense out of what’s happening in Columbus. The question is- will it lead to a renaissance for Ohio or a Wall Street style house of cards that melts down and is rebuilt on the same bad foundation?

Time will tell.

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12 Responses

  1. Stephen Lahanas March 24, 2011 / 12:09 pm
    Gov. Kasich makes perfect sense once you understand what he truly represents. He is neither an innovator nor a reformer – he came into the campaign and into the office with a national agenda which he is dedicated to apply here in Ohio. It is the same exact agenda being used by the GOP Governor’s of Wisconsin, Michigan, New Jersey, Florida and about a dozen other states.
     
    The bills and actions they are pushing are coordinated across the following key strategies:

    Cut taxes for business – use the further tax cuts as justification for emergency measures (breaking unions, taking over municipalities, cutting services etc.). Any new revenues will come out of increases to middle class taxpayers (either at state or local levels or both).
    Dismantle the foundation of local opposition parties – this occurs primarily through attack of organizations which traditionally support them (civil servants, teachers, lawyers, police).
    Restrict and obstruct opposition voting – by placing new restrictions on both voter registration and in person voting. The net result in each state where these measures will take place is about a 5% shift in opposition voter turnout.

    Kasich is not concerned about Ohio (or Ohio voters) in the least which explains his behavior. He can in one term completely achieve most of his agenda here thus making a huge impact in national politics – it is very possible that the voting changes alone may shift the outcome of the next presidential race. He is an ideologue and a warrior for his cause – not a governor in the traditional sense as we’ve had here before…

    Well-loved. Brilliant: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 6

  2. Teresa Lea March 24, 2011 / 12:12 pm
    This post is way too kind to Kaisch.

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  3. John Ise March 24, 2011 / 12:55 pm
    Stephen is RIGHT ON!  Here in Florida is they typical headline:

    Poorest, sickest, oldest poised for brunt of Florida Senate budget cut proposals

    By John Kennedy

    Posted: 7:17 p.m. Monday, March 21, 2011

     
    A budget hobbled by recession-era red ink began taking shape Monday in the state Senate, including proposed cuts to schools, Medicaid and programs used by some of the poorest and sickest Floridians.

    Oliver Twist is back!

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4

  4. Greg Hunter March 25, 2011 / 1:04 pm
    I like Kasich, not for policies, but for guts. He is not afraid of the next election. He is pursuing his goals relentlessly. Admirable really. He does not care that he is alienating many of the people that voted for him. I wish all politicians acted in such a manner.

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  5. djw March 25, 2011 / 1:09 pm
    Agreed completely, Greg–it’s a shame his actual priorities are so cartoonishly evil. He may have overreached, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Ohio isn’t Wisconsin–and that is not a compliment.

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  6. John Ise March 25, 2011 / 1:52 pm
    As the social safety net gets shredded by the likes of Kasich, who benefits?  Well…corporations like GE!  From the NY Times:

    GE reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States.
     
     
    Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion. …
     
     
    [L]ow taxes are nothing new for G.E. The company has been cutting the percentage of its American profits paid to the Internal Revenue Service for years, resulting in a far lower rate than at most multinational companies.Its extraordinary success is based on an aggressive strategy that mixes fierce lobbying for tax breaks and innovative accounting that enables it to concentrate its profits offshore. G.E.’s giant tax department, led by a bow-tied former Treasury official named John Samuels, is often referred to as the world’s best tax law firm.
    So patriotic it makes you want to vomit!

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  7. Ice Bandit March 25, 2011 / 10:03 pm
    As the social safety net gets shredded by the likes of Kasich, who benefits?  Well…corporations like GE! (John Ise)
     
    …the Old Bandito can’t let that allegation go unchallenged, dear John. Oh, GE is in bed with a politico all right, but it’s President Obama whose lighting the cigarette and asking GE if they felt the earth move. If Obama and GE honcho Jeff Immelt were any closer Michelle would be hiring a private investigator. Of course, like any good hooker, Immelt is hoping the First Sugar Daddy will be lavish with gifts, and in GE’s case that would be in the form of taxpayer bucks for such hopeless indulgences as high speed rail. Don’t blame Kasich for GE’s working girl luck, it’s Jeff Immelt who’s wearing the fishnets……..
     
     

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  8. Bob from the Boro March 30, 2011 / 7:39 am
    I held my nose and voted for Kasich as I perceived him to be the lesser of the two evils.  I do admire the fact that he does not seem to care about his pole numbers and does what he thinks is right.  A pleasant change from most politicians. 

    If America does not change its present course of bigger and more intrusive government, then we are doomed to the dust bin of history.  There are those that need the social safety net, and as the world gets more competitive it will only get worse.  That having been said, if you continue to give more jobs, power, and money to the government unions the problem will only get worse.

    I know you guys will love this one, but I can’t resist:  Government is not the solution to the problem, government is the problem.

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  9. Greg Hunter March 30, 2011 / 8:08 am
    ….more intrusive government…

    You mean like the heartbeat bill, yeah that’s less intrusive.

    You held your nose…Really? …you voted for a guy who was part of a system that robbed the American taxpayer to keep the banks open that worked for a media company that blamed employee unions.

    I say checked your brain in the booth not held your nose.

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  10. Ice Bandit March 31, 2011 / 8:44 pm
     
    ……so GE paid no taxes yet broke no laws. The way the left has been weeping, wailing and gnashing their bicuspids over this issue, one would think GE CEO Jeff Immelt was selling US nuclear secrets to the Ayatollah. Their rage, of course, is highly selective for when real tax cheats like Charlie Rangel and Tim Geithner were being exposed, Democrats reacted to the news with excuse making, rationalization, yawns and the sounds of crickets chirping. So the question is this; who would you rather had the funds the left wishes GE had paid; the company who will reinvest those bucks in R and D, job and wealth creation, and recompensing stockholders, or the Obama administration. And that choice, dear reader, is as easy to make as the alternative of spending the evening alone with a drunk and nearly naked Jessica Alba or having a root canal sans novacaine……..

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

  11. joe_mamma April 1, 2011 / 9:15 am
    “……so GE paid no taxes yet broke no laws.” Ice Bandit
     
    Exactly amigo.  And who allowed them to do this….Government.   We need to rid ourselves of the notion that corporations are Capitalists.  They are not, they are opportunists and will seek out every legal business advantage they can.   

    Brilliant or Bozo? Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

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