29 September 2008

It's good to be Queen.

When will DC Council get it through their heads that when you are Queen, you don't answer summons from the commoners?

I seriously don't understand where DC Council gets off trying to have Chancellor Rhee or Victor Reinoso appear in front of them. They ceded authority when they handed over control of the schools to the mayor, despite all evidence that the mayor and his team (chiefly Victor Reinoso) couldn't even put together their own plan for running a school system. If there's one thing I make sure my freshmen composition students know how to do, it's cite sources, because plagiarism is simply wrong.

This is the same city council that approved the hire of an individual with three years of classroom experience and no education degree to run one of the more high-profile and disfunctional school systems in the country.

Here's Rhee, in her own words, talking to Fast Company, a magazine that was born and should have died extolling the "rule-changing" tech boom:
Rhee has been outspoken about the low value she places on appearing before the council. In the September issue of Fast Company magazine, she described watching council hearings on television: "There's this crazy dynamic where every agency head is kowtowing. They sit there and get beat down. I'm not going to sit on public TV and take a beating I don't deserve. I don't take that crap."

The arrogance is astonishing, but Rhee has taken a calculated gamble that this city council will roll over for her, and so far she's been correct. Her most intense opposition comes from Councilmember Barry, and she correctly dismisses that as non-threatening, since his own credibility is severely compromised in this town. Who will step up and put his or her political capital on the line to stop her?

Vincent Gray? Hmm...does it advance his political aspirations to appear annoyed but in the end not seriously challenge Rhee's lunacy? A: Yes.
Jim Graham? Please...
Kwame Brown? Mr. Brown likes to talk, but that's about it.
Jack Evans? Sure...The Developer's Best Friend has two reasons to let Rhee run amok: her failure reflects poorly on Fenty, therefore increasing his own influence AND his developer backers are dying to get their hands on public property that DCPS controls.
David Catania? No. DCPS and DC's children can all die quietly in the name of fiscal responsibility.
Carol Schwartz? (because she will beat that right-wing Republican as an independent) Possibly, but doubtful.

OK, I'll stop. It's too ludicrous to go into the remaining members (Mendelson, Bowser, Cheh, Alexander, Thomas, Wells). OK, maybe Mendelson, because he has a habit of putting obstacles in the way of steamrollers, but like Barry, he would have trouble garnering support or public interest in his opposition.

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