Dear Tennessee Legislators: Your anti-Common Core bills aren’t worth the paper they are written on

2013-02-27 19.31.04


By Eric Holcombe
I wish it wasn’t so. There are several bills before the education committees of varying potential effectiveness to close the gaping wounds of Common Core caused by the state’s fraudulent end-around of the voters with the Race To The Top (RTTT) application. However, the Republican “leadership” just isn’t interested in some of these bills. See, Governor Haslam has a direct conflict of interest as a board member of Achieve Inc, the Washington D.C. corporation that received (still receives?) millions from Bill Gates, and the “project manager” for PARCC, the no-bid testing body created with RTTT money. His appointed commissioner of education, Kevin Huffman is on the board of PARCC so he too has a direct conflict of interest in altering Common Core or the mandatory online data mining of your children. He is also a member of the Council of Chief State School Officers, the other Washington D.C. corporation that received millions from Bill Gates. Plus our state attorney general Bob Cooper, who is appointed by the illegally “selected” judges in our unconstitutional “Tennessee Plan”,  is a signatory to the RTTT application that committed us to Common Core and the data-mining and also cannot afford to admit any fault in the claims made therein. So any bills that would seriously challenge Common Core “state” Standards or the desires of the federal government (but I repeat myself) will earn a quick “opinion” from the AG that we are being “unconstitutional” or that we shouldn’t dare challenge our federal overlords or some such poppycock his office is known for when it comes to anything remotely 10th Amendment related. Some bills just don’t have a chance – like SB2405/HB2332 by Beavers and Womick that would simply stop Common Core, or SB1469/HB1705 by Gresham and Faison that while it doesn’t really stop PARCC, it does limit the bizarre data-mining of children that the U.S. government has already suggested it wants to do. Unfortunately, this bill appeals to the data-gathering privacy limits imposed by FERPA, which Obama has already gutted by executive order because this was necessary since the PARCC/SBAC data-mining and subsequent 3rd party sale of your children’s privacy was already illegal under federal law. Rep. Rick Womick appears to be protesting the “leadership” gatekeepers of the “acceptable” bills just a bit here:

Other bills are simply too weak and would do nothing substantive to correct the error of RTTT and the obvious corruption in the state board of education and executive branch that brought it to us. The only bill that has progressed is SB1835/HB1549 by Gresham/Dunn (see amendments) which does nothing about the existing Common Core standards for English Language Arts or Mathematics, but only the adoption of future standards for science, social studies, health and sex education – which will still be done after the state board of education simply puts it on their website for 60 days. And believe me, it will happen. Because they want their sugar daddy money from the fed. This bill has the possibility of shutting out PARCC from TN, but again, we will be doing mandatory online testing for Common Core with somebody – because this bill does nothing about the existing tar baby we are attached to. But none of the bills will work anyway. Why? Because Obama is making our allegedly “state-led” standards mandatory as part of his federal education budget:

As Neil McCluskey from the Cato Institute explains:   “The big story in the proposal is – or, at least, should be – that the president almost certainly wants to make the Core permanent by attaching annual federal funding to its use, and to performance on related tests. Just as the administration called for in its 2010 NCLB reauthorization proposal, POTUS wants to employ more than a one-time program, or temporary waivers, to impose “college and career-ready standards,” which–thanks to RTTT and waivers–is essentially synonymous with Common Core. In fact, President Obama proposes changing Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act – of which NCLB is just the most recent reauthorization – to a program called “College- and Career-Ready Students,” with an annual appropriation of over $14 billion.

This was utterly predictable. Core opponents, who are so often smeared as conspiracy mongers, know full well both what the President has proposed in the past, and how government accumulates power over time. RTTT was the foot in the door, and once most states were using the same standards and tests, there was little question what Washington would eventually say: “Since everyone’s using the same tests and standards anyway, might as well make federal policy based on that.”

Don’t worry, we have “Conservative Republicans” Bailout Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander (and his campaign manager Jimmy Duncan) watching our backs right? Maybe Doug Overbey and Brian Kelsey can tell you that I am all worked up about a problem that doesn’t exist yet…

So Bob Cooper (at “leadership” urging for opinions) will shoot down ANY of your bills – not that both houses wouldn’t just return to their RTTT vomit once they feared loss of the sugar daddy money (Yes, I noted the hand-wringing of Charlotte Burks last week).  Our executive branch and the necessary appointees are bought and paid for. The people lose.

My prediction: Tennessee will pimp your children some more for that almighty federal dollar. The names of the “standards” may change, as other states have already attempted to rebrand the BS into bovine scat, but it still smells the same.

It’s time to put the 10th Amendment pants on….if you have any. Or maybe borrow Sen. Ramsey’s boots. He doesn’t seem to be using them. I hope you have the courage to do so.


WARNING! This Common Core Post contains explicit content


by Eric Holcombe

…because it contains text from two of the text “exemplars” recommended by the Common Core “state” Standards for English Language Arts for preparing your human capital widget to “compete in the global marketplace”.  That means if you are under 18 years of age, stop reading now. This isn’t your Common Core English class. My intent is not to disseminate the pornographic material contained in the so-called “state-led” Common Core standards, but rather to warn you in the spirit of Ephesians 5: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

‘Wait!’ you say, ‘we hear all the time that Common Core “isn’t a curriculum”, so how could it possibly be recommending a bunch of books to read? Isn’t that a curriculum?’ Uh, yeah…it goes right along with that famous “state-led” claim. But the state and local whores of Common Core still insist on telling us these were all our idea and they are “rigorous” and “internationally benchmarked”.  They continue to do state propaganda puff pieces on the wonderful success of Common Core and it’s all rainbows and unicorns.

But there’s a problem. The Common Core English Language Arts Standard contains a list of recommended reading text “exemplars” – grade “appropriate” of course. However, some of them contain passages that are simply pornography and are therefore illegal to present to a minor in the state of Tennessee:


39-17-911. Sale, loan or exhibition of material to minors.

(a) It is unlawful for any person to knowingly sell or loan for monetary consideration or otherwise exhibit or make available to a minor:

(1) Any picture, photograph, drawing, sculpture, motion picture film, video game, computer software game, or similar visual representation or image of a person or portion of the human body, that depicts nudity, sexual conduct, excess violence, or sado-masochistic abuse, and that is harmful to minors; or

(2) Any book, pamphlet, magazine, printed matter, however reproduced, or sound recording, which contains any matter enumerated in subdivision (a)(1), or that contains explicit and detailed verbal descriptions or narrative accounts of sexual excitement, sexual conduct, excess violence, or sado-masochistic abuse, and that is harmful to minors.”


I’ll warn you now – these texts aren’t fit to be read. They are filth. I can’t think of an “appropriate” age to read them or any educational benefit from reading them. If they were a picture or a movie, some would legally be considered child pornography. In fact, if these texts are provided to minors in a Tennessee public school classroom, the school most certainly will be in violation of Tennessee’s obscenity law and possibly guilty of delinquency of a minor. That is if the human capital widgets “learn” anything from reading them.

White County Assistant Principal (and candidate for U.S. Congress) Jerry Lowery warned the gathering at the Senate Education Committee “fact-finding’ hearings of the filth contained in “The Bluest Eye” and would not read it aloud, instead providing written examples to the Senate Education Committee of what he found offensive and inappropriate for students. So at least the Senate Education Committee is aware, uh… I mean reminded about it, because see, these are “state-led” standards that we thought up right here in Tennessee. At least that’s what the propagandists keep telling us.


 The two Common Core recommended texts are called “The Bluest Eye” and “Dreaming in Cuban”. They are recommended for 11th grade students. They can be found listed on Page 19 of the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts Exemplars (along with the ISBN numbers so you can order your curriculum that isn’t a curriculum) or they can be seen in the Common Core Appendix B list of Text Exemplars here on page 152 along with some ambiguous descriptions and non-pornographic excerpts from each text. I have wrestled for a while about publicizing these texts more than they have been already, but I think the parents and taxpayers need to see the kind of depraved minds that are behind these “state-led standards that aren’t a curriculum” and the “list of books that isn’t a partial or complete list”. This is how the Common Core whores operate. They hope you never find this. When you do, suddenly the “exemplar” text lists aren’t a “partial or complete list”(?!?) or really even a suggestion that you read, even though they give you the ISBN info so you can order them.  These are the people deciding what your children need to learn and when – and rewriting the college entrance exams. I am showing you these to provoke you, so that you don’t go back to sleep and ignore the millions in payoffs to the organizations our governors and commissioners of education are part of (NGA, CCSSO, Achieve Inc., Diploma Project, PARCC). So that you can no longer ignore that the fraud of Common Core was foisted upon the administrators and teachers of the public schools to force their consent before the standards even existed. So that you are equally offended when you see these local propaganda puff pieces in the “news” paper. But ultimately, that you might consider whom is teaching your children – and how much control do you really have over what is being taught?

 Here is the link to excerpts from both texts. By clicking this link, you agree that you are 18 years or older (and want to find out what Common Core intends to teach 16-year olds to help them compete in the global marketplace).

 What I want to know is, if Common Core is really “state-led” as claimed by the Governor, commissioner of Education, the state school board, Jamie “we were going to do it anyway” Woodson and all Bill Gates’ paid whores at the “fact-finding” hearing, just exactly whom from Tennessee worked on putting together this English Language Arts Text Exemplar list and why didn’t they have any objection to the content? Who from Tennessee worked on these “state-led” standards and thought it was just fine to present pedophilia pornography to minors in violation of state law? I’d like to give credit where credit is due.

Setting the record straight on DHS and license plate tracking

Last week the internet was ablaze with reports of the Dept. of Homeland InSecurity contracting to obtain license plate tracking information, and then the subsequent canceling of request to contract.  Contrary to what many are thinking, that was not a victory for we the people.

It seems as if many people are under the mistaken impression that we dodged a surveillance-bullet when DHS withdrew this solicitation. We didn’t. A national plate tracking database exists, run by Vigilant Solutions, and it is widely used by law enforcement nationwide. The company is currently aggressively defending in court its ability to track anyone it wants, however it wants. If you’d like to see which agencies have access to its rapidly growing database, you can click here and scroll through the drop down menu. Vigilant has helpfully provided a list for all to peruse.

More on the beta testing city for the police state, Los Angeles, CA.

Britain’s GCHQ guide to Online Covert Action

It has long been an open secret that U.S. and other government     agencies have been spreading disinformation and misdirection among     dissident groups, including various “patriot myths” designed to     disrupt activists and prevent them from making competent efforts.     One of the just-released documents by Edward Snowden includes the     British manual for doing that, which is shared with its allies. See

So the next time you receive word from some “patriot” for actions     that are too simple, obvious, direct, and appealing, the odds are     high that is coming from a government agent.

-- Jon

Constitution Society     
2900 W Anderson Ln C-200-322 
Austin, TX 78757 512/299-5001

Commission passes election year County employee bribe bonuses, another sales tax referendum & more spending increases

Here’s a humorous, while direct  letter to the editor on the employee bonuses.

Item F6 took an interesting turn when Commission Jim Folts pointed out that there was no such parcel of land on the State Comptroller’s website maps.  Commissioner Burkhalter, who is running for Juvenile Judge, tabled the motion, only to bring it back up at the end and claim that he had found the parcel on the State’s website.  Then the County Purchasing Agent, Theresa Johnson, said that the parcel number was a typo, that the parcel number is 062.25 not 062.65.  This made Burkhalter look bad, because he claimed he found something that didn’t exist and said he needed to abstain after misreading the State’s website.  That wasn’t the only problem.  Commissioner Ron French inquired what the last Assessor’s appraised value was.  It was $150,400 in 2010, about half of what the resolution authorized purchasing the land for.  More waste from the Sheriff’s Dept.  The matter was tabled again.  This issue will likely be back.

Commissioner Folts, tried to find out what happened to the wrecked Animal Control vehicle, budget increase item F3.  A man in the audience said he knew, but he was not recognized and the Commission passed the purchase of a new vehicle at $24,295, without learning where the wrecked vehicle is.

Today’s article in The Daily Times does a decent job of reporting on part of the meeting.  The one thing that doesn’t come across in the context that it was spoken was Karen Miller’s statement about using the children as an excuse for tax increases.  She is very much concerned about the children and the people of Blount County.  If you want the full story, listen to her comments at the Commission meeting last night, here online.

Candidate comments for the orders of the evening.

Good evening Mr. Chairman.  What a beautiful day.  After you weather the storm, out comes the beautiful sunshine.  The people of Blount County have been weathering a storm on the level of a tornado bearing the burden of $221 million in debt. Tonight you have the opportunity to let the good people of this County to see a little glimmer of sunshine by rejecting this bribe called a bonus.

This bonus is about buying votes. Furthermore, it treats all employees the same, regardless of merit. Communism offers the same pay, regardless of effort.  Is that what you want for Blount County? Show the people of Blount County a ray of sunshine by sending all the turn back money to the rainy day fund to weather another storm or better yet, pay down some of this County’s astronomical debt.

Secondly, item F6, approving the purchase of 4 acres of land for $300,000.  Does this land contain gold or oil on it?  Why would anyone in their right mind spend $300 grand on 4 acres, unless it was sitting on a gold mine?

There are more problems with tonight’s agenda than I can cover in 3 minutes, so I’ll finish with item F8, increasing the sales tax.  Haven’t we been there and done that already, multiple times?  Didn’t this Commission waste $80,000 last year on a wheel tax referendum?  Einstein is credited with saying that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.  The people have spoken several times already.  Enough is enough.

Vote down all these spending increases on the agenda tonight and you won’t need a sales tax increase.  Then Mr. Chairman and Commissioners, the people of Blount County will finally be able to see a ray of sunshine.

Tona Monroe Candidate for Commission District 7 Seat B


Hey there, my name is Douglas Benton from Alcoa and after reading the paper on Feb 2, about the “GRAND REWARD”, I became…well, sad and disgusted.

I am old now…and looking back, there are lots of things I would do different.  There are lots of things I did that were against the law, and thank goodness, I never got caught and went to jail.  I have told my share of lies…hidden the truth from people…spun a story in a certain way.  These things I wish I could change.   Do you ever feel that way?  When you are young…you really don’t understand how you are hurting the other person or people…but you know why.  Those lies are important now.  Every night, when I lay my head on my pillow, I think about what happened that day and re-evaluate the decisions I made.  Do you all ever do that?  YOU SHOULD !!!

You are NOT telling the taxpayers that WE are ~208 MILLION dollars IN DEBT.  YOU ARE LYING TO THE TAXPAYERS !!!  Does that bother you?  Are you grown-up enough where the LIES start to bother you?

I have been coming to these meetings for a couple of years now and I watch a couple of concerned citizens come before you and express their opinion…and then, you vote the way you want…without thinking about what the people want.  Why do you think they voted you here?…because they trust you to make the RIGHT decision.  The truth is…you don’t care.

BlountCounty employees earn a good living…paid for by the taxpayers.  They get a CADILLAC health plan that cost us TAXPAYERS “900 and something dollars a month per employee”…Mr. Vinyard couldn’t even give me a correct dollar amount last week in the Budget Meeting.  To me, that is a GIFT…THAT KEEPS ON GIVING !!!!  I don’t know anyone, in the private sector that is paying $25/month for their health plan.  And with this governmental takeover of our healthcare system…Obamacare…everyone I know is paying double and some are paying triple for their plan.  A friend of ours came in from Los   Angeles on Wednesday, and we started talking about Obamacare…and he told me that his plan WAS $316/month with a $1k deductible and no copay…now it is $1,367/month with a $9k deductible and a $50 co-pay.  “If you like your health plan…you can keep it” .   Obummer also said that every family would save around $2,500/year on their health plans.  These are the biggest lies of the century!

Did he learn to lie from you all or did you learn to lie from him.  No one trusts you all to do the right thing…that’s why they don’t come to these meetings.  They hate watching liers!!!

Mayor Mitchell, why DIDN’T you put in the article that BlountCounty was ~208 MILLION dollars in debt…instead of having them print “This resulted in a $2.3 million turn back from appropriations in the general fund” and “according to the state Comptroller’s Office’s audit, the county ended fiscal year 2012-2013 with an $11.4 million fund balance”.    Talk about spinning some BULL.    I AM VERY ANGRY NOW!!!    WE ARE AROUND 208 MILLION DOLLARS IN DEBT AND YOU WANT TO GIVE AWAY ANOTHER 543 THOUSAND DOLLARS OF MY MONEY…FOR WHAT???…FOR VOTES???? STOP GIVING AWAY OUR MONEY!

Douglas Benton Candidate for Commission District 2 Seat B

Douglas Benton’s comments off the agenda

I knew you would pass the $543 thousand dollar “GIFT”.  That’s why we call you the “bobbing heads of Blount County”…you can’t say no.  Mr. Mayor, here you go again, giving away our money.  A couple of months ago you were going to give the Park Service a chunk of our money for the government shutdown…and you didn’t even have the Commission’s approval…now you have given away ½ million dollars of the taxpayers money to buy votes from the employees of Blount County.  If you want to give them a gift…pull out your wallet.

I can’t wait for the Property Tax increase coming next year.  You are going to whine and say “its for the kids”…or “we’re going to have to lay off thousands of employees”…or something ridiculous like that.  I wish it was a law that you had to let the citizens vote on every expenditure over $25 thousand dollars.  That might stop you spending our BORROWED money…that you don’t have.  Or did you forget that we are ~208 MILLION dollars in debt?   And Mr. Vineyard….DEBT IS DEBT !!!!!!!!!

Senator Doug Overbey should support Grand Jury Reform

My letter to the editor was published today.  Click here to read more on the subject of Grand Jury reform.  Earlier this year, a local activist was dismissed from jury duty, demonstrating the need for judicial reform.

From Jon Roland:

The following are the standards that a grand jury system must satisfy to comply with the original understanding of that term used in the U.S. Constitution:

  1. Selected at random from the general public, with perhaps some filtering, but without “stacking”.
  2. Selection by a neutral party (not the judge or prosecutor).
  3. Size of 23.
  4. Decision by 12.
  5. Election of foreperson by the members.
  6. Term of service long enough to learn how to do it.
  7. Limits on terms of service to avoid entrenchment.
  8. Adequate training of grand jurors.
  9. Prevention of undue influence by interested parties, especially judge or prosecutors.
  10. Secrecy of grand jury deliberations, while they are going on, but with allowance of disclosures in their presentments.
  11. Enough time to examine each case, or enough grand juries.
  12. No impediment to access by public to members to present complaints or give testimony, except for reasonable scheduling.
  13. Acceptance of any person, not just a professional prosecutor, being appointed to prosecute a case by the grand jury granting him an indictment.
  14. Acceptance that a grand jury indictment removes official immunity from criminal prosecution.
  15. Acceptance that a grand jury finding of sufficient evidence of misconduct removes official immunity from civil prosecution.
  16. Establishment of rule that a grand jury must determine whether a court has jurisdiction before returning an indictment for that court.
  17. Avoidance of excessive or abusive use of grand jury to harass, intimidate, discredit, or injure persons.
  18. Prevention of misuse during trials of evidence obtained by grand jury.



Constitution Society     
2900 W Anderson Ln C-200-322 
Austin, TX 78757 512/299-5001

Tennessee Fascism

Picking which companies get incentives and which ones don’t amounts to fascism.

Businesses should be treated equally under the law.  But in today’s society, get konnected with Big G and you can make a pile of money.

Food stamps cut in crony Agriculture bill

1% cut?  Oh my gosh… the sky will now fall.

Meanwhile, the corporate hacks in Congress made sure to keep us poisoned and pacified with plenty of fluoride.