Kansas GOP Insider (wannabe): Man Up, Conservatives

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Man Up, Conservatives

Here is the full text of Article 6 of the Kansas Constitution:

§ 6: Finance.(a) The legislature may levy a permanent tax for the use and benefit of state institutions of higher education and apportion among and appropriate the same to the several institutions, which levy, apportionment and appropriation shall continue until changed by statute. Further appropriation and other provision for finance of institutions of higher education may be made by the legislature.(b) The legislature shall make suitable provision for finance of the educational interests of the state. No tuition shall be charged for attendance at any public school to pupils required by law to attend such school, except such fees or supplemental charges as may be authorized by law. The legislature may authorize the state board of regents to establish tuition, fees and charges at institutions under its supervision.(c) No religious sect or sects shall control any part of the public educational funds.
The Kansas Supreme Court issued a 47-page screed mansplaining their interpretation of those 145 words. People who can read should be offended. 

From those 145 words, a group of unelected lawyers selected by secret committee somehow determined that Kansas schools need about $38 million more to be adequately, suitably funded. (That estimate is courtesy of one of the lawyers poised to take a huge cut of the cash, so caveat emptor.)

I'm no Constitutional scholar (and I'm going to go out on a limb and say neither are the majority of our so-called "Supreme" Court members), but it seems like the legislature is responsible for making funding decisions. It's almost like that's its primary role.

It's quite telling that everyone with half a brain knew how this ruling was going to go down, and not because anyone could put to words exactly how the funding was unconstitutional, but because the Court maintains this continuous charade in which they demand more money and the Legislature (and taxpayers) just hand it over. We knew this was coming, because this Court is corrupt--not because we read the Constitution and the Classroom Learning Assuring Student Success Act and thought: those two don't jibe. NO ONE DID THAT! And most Kansans can read -- even those who attended public schools!

I find the suggestion that the Court will order schools closed completely laughable. The Court has no authority other than what the people give them. Yes, we have some papers that suggest the Court can give orders. But who is the enforcement arm of that body? 

School boards could and should decide to open. Those responsible for cutting the checks to school districts, should go ahead and cut checks to districts. Teachers should show up. Administrators should show up, and the state, which funnels money to the county, which funnels money to school districts should cut checks to pay all of the staff.

All honest people should agree that children's education should not be held hostage to this process. (And I'm saying that as someone who typically puts air quotes around the words "public education.") 

No funding or policy decisions should be made under duress. That's just asinine. And, I note, that's not how good decisions are made. 

Giving legislators only a few short days to come up with a funding solution that will please a court determined to be unappeased as long as conservatives hold office in Kansas is impossible. I guarantee you the Schools for Fair Funding lawyers who have grown extraordinarily wealthy off the backs of Kansas taxpayers are already firing up their next lawsuits. These ambulance chasers will not stop until they have enough to send their great-great-great-great grandchildren to the poshest private schools in America. (Or until their villas in the Swiss Alps are paid off.)

At some point, Kansans need to call the Court's bluff. This has gotten out of hand. It's always been stupid. Kansas taxpayers don't have an endless supply of money. It's time we stop acting like ATMs for this corrupt, politicized court.

I have a lot more thoughts on this, but unlike the members of the KS Supreme Court, I don't spend the majority of my days golfing or lounging by the pool, only to step away from my long term vacation to disrupt the vacations of conservatives and taxpayers -- WHO TOIL AWAY the majority of days to fund the lavish lifestyles of Kansas justices. This is my long form way of saying, it's a holiday. I'm going to spend time with my family and friends. I'm going to spend some time remembering those who are no longer with us. 

If you are a grassroots conservative, and you take one second away from your family and friends to think on this steaming pile of bile from the Supreme Court, and you wonder what you can do: Right now, I would say shoot your legislator an email and promise your blood, sweat and tears this campaign season. Money is great, but your time may be more valuable. Every minute legislators spend in Topeka trying to appease the Supreme Court is a minute they can't be on the campaign trail. They're going to need your help, so offer it and mean it.


  1. The opinion of the Kansas Supreme Court in the Gannon case violated Kansas Law. House Substitute for Senate Bill 3, which passed in Special Session in 2005, and was signed into law by then Governor Kathleen Sebelius clearly states that the court: "As a part of a remedy, preliminary decision or final decision in
    which a statute or legislative enactment of this state has been held unconstitutional as a violation of article 6 of the Kansas constitution, the appellate court or any master or other person or persons appointed by the appellate court to hear or determine a cause or controversy or to make or enforce any order or remedy ordered by a court pursuant to K.S.A. 60-253, and amendments thereto, or any other provision of law, SHALL NOT HAVE THE AUTHORITY TO ORDER A SCHOOL DISTRICT or any attendance center within a school district TO BE CLOSED or ENJOIN the use of all statutes related to the distribution of funds for public education."
    The court's threat to close schools is unlawful and the instruction or urging of how to use statutes relating to the distribution of school monies is also unlawful. The court is within it's authority under the doctrine of judicial review to opine if the law is unconstitutional but the authority of the court ends there.
    This means that Kansas schools will not be closed and schools will be operational in August of this year.

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  3. The Kansas City (Red) Star and it's failing sibling the Eagle (Beacon - what happened to that part of their masthead?) a demanding that Governor Brownback call a special session to address this illegal extortion. I think that the Governor should do so for the purpose of impeaching, trying, and removing 3 or 4 Justices for high crimes and misdemeanors.

    Folks need to understand that impeachment is a political and not a legal act - and, both technical and actually, high crimes and misdemeanors are whatever you can get enough votes in the respective houses for.