This Parade Needs Some Torrential Rain

President Barack Obama hasn’t even been inaugurated yet, and the Village is already talking about how awesome his successor Jeb Bush is going to be.  Here’s the problem with that little dynastic disaster:  Jebby here has this little albatross around his neck shaped like a school and pile of dollars set on fire.

Many of his admirers cite Bush’s success in Florida as reason enough to get behind him.

But a close examination raises questions about the depth and durability of the gains in Florida. After the dramatic jump of the Bush years, Florida test scores edged up in 2009 and then dropped, with low-income students falling further behind. State data shows huge numbers of high school graduates still needing remedial help in math and reading.

And some of the policies Bush now pushes, such as vouchers and mandatory online classes, have no clear links to the test-score bump in Florida. Bush has been particularly vigorous about promoting online education, urging states to adopt policies written with input from companies that stand to profit from expanded cyber-schooling.

Many of those companies also donate to Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education, which has raised $19 million in recent years to promote his agenda nationwide.

Sherman Dorn, a professor of education at the University of South Florida, says some of Bush’s policies as governor, such as an intense focus on teaching reading, made a real difference to Florida students. “It’s pretty clear Governor Bush should get credit for giving a damn,” he said. But by teaming with for-profit corporations to push cyber-schools, which have produced dismally low test scores in many states, Bush is “throwing away whatever credibility he had coming out of Florida,” Dorn said.

The long and the short of it is Jeb’s foundation is built around turning public schools into online diploma mills, only even fewer student would actually graduate as a result.  Think about the kind of scam where you eliminate the teachers, the school building, the school workers, hold classes “online” and pocket the difference.  That’s Jeb’s future of education, something so awful even Rick Scott couldn’t get it passed, in Florida, with a GOP super-majority.  Voters told Scott to go to hell when it came to allowing vouchers to go to religious schools when Scott then turned towards a crapton of crazy constitutional amendments, none of which passed (and few if any would have survived court challenges.)

Meanwhile, Jeb’s been working the corporate angle on this scheme with his buddies champing at the bit to get at all that education cash, and of course the plan is to turn all of America’s educational institutions into the the equivalent of Kaplan Online.

It’s time to bury any notion of this assclown being a viable 2016 candidate now.  Unless scientists come up with a bush that grows pepper bacon on it, I don’t want to see another Bush as long as I live.

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61 replies
  1. 1
    different-church-lady says:

    OK Village: voters still blame his brother for the financial mess and same brother is persona non grata with the party. Yes, dear Village, keep pimping him. Stay detached as always, don’t ever change.

  2. 2
    Betty Cracker says:

    Thank you. As a parent with a child in Florida’s crappy public school system, I’m gobsmacked every time I hear some idiot prattling on about the “Education Governor.”

    Also2, another fucking Bush, seriously? Even Americans aren’t that goddamn stupid. It sucks for the Bush crime family that their Fredo was elevated to Don status instead of Michael, but there you go. It happened. And we haven’t forgotten it.

  3. 3
    RSR says:

    Ed Reform: the 21st Century grift.

  4. 4
    Turbulence says:

    They really expect us to take Jeb unleash Chang! Bush seriously? Really?

    I mean, when I was a kid, my Dad taught me about Chiang Kai Shek and he sure as hell hadn’t been Director of the CIA or an ambassador….

  5. 5
    Cassidy says:

    “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” – Napoleon Bonaparte

  6. 6
    El Cid says:

    Yes, but he’s not liberal, he’s not a Democrat, and he’s not black. The Village misses its proper Republican leadership, in which those people are never going to get anything which might better go to the best classes and their Village admirers.

  7. 7
    General Stuck says:

    There is whole lot of shit to rain in the GOP before 2016 rolls around. It is beginning now with some old wingnut senate bulls, and others, rebelling against the no tax gods, AKA Grover and his band of electoral hatchet men.

    And that rending with be followed shortly by the Obama push for comprehensive immigration reform. All of it replete with many tea tard and wingnut head explosions, as more pragmatic wingnuts try to rein in the crazies. And that is just the beginning. Can the nativist blood suckers be subjugated enough to allow for a GE viable republican to run. And by viable, I mean a candidate that isn’t a chameleon and runs on something like core conviction, and doesn’t include the 27 percenters driving the clown car.

  8. 8
    GregB says:

    Should the Bush family change their name to Bourbon?

  9. 9
    Paul says:

    Don’t forget about Jeb Bush’s involvement as a Governor in the Terry Schiavo fiasco. Jeb Bush went out of his way to go after Michael Schiavo.

    For anybody who is against big government intrusion and religious freaks, Jeb Bush should be the last person you should vote for.

  10. 10
    Rick Massimo says:

    I learned from Mark Halperin last week that this is an example of the Left-Wing Freak Show not letting someone define themselves, which is a right that must be in the Bill of Rights somewhere.

  11. 11
    Zifnab25 says:

    It’s time to bury any notion of this assclown being a viable 2016 candidate now.

    What are you talking about? The way you describe him – corporate whore, abysmal technocrat, shameless liar, faux-moderate credentials – the man seems a shoe-in for the nomination in 2016.

    Republican candidates only need to do two things: Carry Ohio. And carry Florida. Jeb Bush is half way there. This guy has sterling Republican credentials, he’ll have an instant massive war chest, and Republicans will be more than happy to put a Bush back on the ballot now that they’ve had time to forget how crappy the first two were.

  12. 12
    maya says:

    only even fewer student would actually graduate as a result.

    Don’t mean to be picky, but if you are going to do a post on education it might be a good idea not to write like you graduated from Kaplan Online.Only even adding the ‘s’ to student doesn’t help much.

  13. 13
    jibeaux says:

    Unless and until Betty Cracker or Carl Hiaasen decide to run for national office, I’m perfectly fine with a policy of not voting for Floridians, period.

  14. 14
    The Moar You Know says:

    The money and effort that is being spent to rehabilitate this cursed family is gobsmacking to me. I can’t remember what rag did the ten-page kneepad-worthy bio on Jeb last month (I think it was the Atlantic but I just can’t remember) but that kind of advertising doesn’t come cheap.

    The Bushes are people who would gleefully have 95% of this nation ground up for fertilizer.

  15. 15
    Roger Moore says:


    For anybody who is against big government intrusion and religious freaks, Jeb Bush should be the last person you should vote for.

    OTOH, to win the Republican nomination, he needs to attract people who are in favor of big government intrusion on behalf of religious freaks, so maybe it gives him a leg up.

  16. 16
    Zandar says:


    My kingdom for a fuck to give, I suppose.

  17. 17
    General Stuck says:

    please release my comment from WP purgatory . thanx

  18. 18
    Emma says:

    @Zifnab25: If you’re saying he’ll carry Florida just because of his ex-job, I think you should rethink that. There are swarms of Florida voters that would crawl over broken glass to hand that jerk his ass.

  19. 19
    Yutsano says:

    Mexican wife who refuses to speak English. Jeb won’t survive a primary on that factoid alone.

  20. 20
    magurakurin says:


    you don’t mean to picky, you just are somehow compelled to be so?

    There has to be a better hobby than looking for typographical errors in posts on a minor league blog.

  21. 21
    Bostondreams says:


    Hey, writing like that when he writes posts about education has made Matt Yglesias rich.

  22. 22
    mdblanche says:

    Is that little albatross named George? Or is that the name of the big albatross?

    @GregB: Well, they’re going to have to change it to something if they’re still hoping for a restoration.

  23. 23
    Bostondreams says:

    As a former teacher in the Florida Public Schools, I was gobsmacked when I was told that the state now REQUIRES students to take at least one class online in order to graduate, as of two years ago.
    And now here in North Carolina, Florida Virtual School has started to extend its reach.

  24. 24
    SenyorDave says:

    Can we get an amendment to the Constitution to prevent a Bush from holding any federal office? I’m pretty sure you can’t target a person, but maybe we can make it so anyone whose last name begins with Bu is ineligible.

  25. 25
    mdblanche says:

    @Yutsano: But if he does, that will totally win him the Latino vote in November, right? Right?

  26. 26
    Suffern ACE says:

    Does this Bush pretend to be a cowboy too? If so, he’s a lock. Bank on it libs! Scared?

  27. 27
    Yutsano says:

    @mdblanche: ONLY if Rubio is his veep. Gotta have that token in there somewhere dontchaknow!

    Oh and as far as the same state thing: Jeb! just registers in Texas or Maine like Cheney did. Easy Peasy!

  28. 28
    Angelia says:

    The online classes are crap here in Virginia. My son is at community college and some classes are only offered online, mindless clicking through algebra problems trying to figure it out on your own. They are making a lot of money, no class room, only part time teacher help. His aid/instructor, even said-“I wish they would just let us teach.” After so many emails and questions.

  29. 29
    Yutsano says:


    His aid/instructor, even said-”I wish they would just let us teach.”

    Yesbut…where’s the profit in THAT?

  30. 30
    John Dillinger says:

    Speaking of corporate giveaways, if memory serves Bush also had his hands on the new baseball stadium fiasco down there. At a minimum, he needs to be asked why he’s so chummy with Jeffrey Loria:

    Also too, he’s getting awfully jowly as he ages. Not sure his is a face voters will find it easy to get used to after eight years of President Other Side of the Pillow.

  31. 31
    gene108 says:


    I fear for public education in North Carolina, with the Republican Legislature and Governor-elect waiting to take over in January.

    The education system, on average throughout the state, is below national standards and I don’t see these guys doing anything to improve things.

    Funneling money to a connected Republican like Jeb Bush would probably be the sort thing they’d want to do.

    Unfortunately, I don’t think the local North Carolina media will be able to paint funneling money to Jeb Bush as Republican corruption.

    Because of the backlash to Gov. Easley’s scandals, I think any media attempt to point out similar corruption by the current crop of Republicans will be seen as a “witch-hunt” by the “liberal media” establishment to get their “team” (i.e. Democrats) back into power.

  32. 32
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Suffern ACE: Jeb(!) doesn’t pretend to be a cowboy, nor does he have the Texas twang affectation sported by former Andover cheerleader W. But I’m sure Jeb(!) is perfectly capable of developing it if need be. He is the smart one, after all…

  33. 33
    gene108 says:


    Jeb! just registers in Texas or Maine like Cheney did.

    In defense of Cheney – as much as it hurts to defend him – the man was born and raised in Wyoming and served as a Congressman from Wyoming, before becoming Papa Bush’s Sec. of Defense and then working for Haliburton.

    Him claiming residency in Wyoming isn’t that much of a stretch of the rules, since he really did have substantial ties to the state.

    I don’t think Jeb’s going to have the same sort of connection to Texas or Maine that Cheney has to Wyoming and moving his residency to another state won’t be as simple.

  34. 34
    Walker says:

    Cannot find the link now while on my phone, but Jeb has other problems. During the housing bubble, there were several articles on the bubble blogs about how Jeb was financially benefiting from all the predatory lending in Florida.

  35. 35
    redshirt says:

    When I win the Powerball I’ll buy houses in FL, OH, VA, NC, and any other swing state in order to grease the wheels for my eventual Powerball Presidency. I’ll choose as my “home state” the one that is the swingiest in the electoral college.

  36. 36
    Warren Terra says:

    I’m disappointed: all of these demands that the voters bring them a Shrubbery, and yet nary a Knight Who Says Nih in sight.

  37. 37
    The Moar You Know says:

    but Jeb has other problems

    @Walker: A wife who seems to be suffering from unspecified mood disorders seems to be one of those problems.

  38. 38
    Hal says:

    So the new, official word from Republicans next election will be how wonderful career politicians and political dynasties are?

    Also, I know the American public has a short term memory, but I still think Bush is toxic waste in the political world. Good luck pushing the idea that we should go back to another version of the Bush years, though if Hillary does run, it would make a very interesting contrast.

  39. 39
    Schlemizel says:

    Betty – I live in Florida during the Bush/Childs gov race. At the time many of my Republican friends claimed (after the ass-whoopin he got) that Jebby was the stupid Bush. DO you know if they still say that?

    @The Moar You Know:
    I thought that was a prerequisite for a GOP Prez.

  40. 40
    Yutsano says:

    @gene108: Cheney had that easy out. Jeb! more than likely does not. Which means poor Marco most likely gets left at the altar while Jeb! goes and woos Susannah Martinez or some other nice talking Latino Republican. Ugh. I just realised it could be Ted Cruz. I’m now ill.

  41. 41
    Chris says:


    To which the Russian people responded “don’t worry, we won’t!”

  42. 42
    JPL says:

    @Yutsano: Ted Cruz was born in Cananda. When Arnie was first elected, the repubs talked about changing the constitution to allow him to run for President. That didn’t last long though.

    also, too. His mother is an American though

  43. 43
    MattR says:


    When Arnie was first elected, the repubs talked about changing the constitution to allow him to run for President.

    My favorite part of this is that birthers use those talks as further proof of a conspiracy to allow an obviously ineligible Obama to become president.

  44. 44
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Schlemizel: Nah. I think Shrubya proved who was the dumber Bush bro pretty definitively after that Chiles ass-whoopin’. BTW, I’ll never forget how pole-axed Jeb(!) looked during that debate when Chiles said, “The old he-coon walks just before the light of day.” LMAO!

  45. 45
    JPL says:

    @MattR: I was at a party before the 08 election and didn’t realize I was talking to wingnuts. They questioned the legitimacy of a candidate because he was born outside of the U.S. I thought that was unfortunate because everyone should realize that when you are born in another country to American citizens “like McCain was”, you are treated as a natural born citizen. It never dawned on me that they meant Obama until they kinda just walked away. lol

  46. 46
    mdblanche says:

    @Warren Terra: It can’t be done.

  47. 47
    Mino says:

    @Betty Cracker: Was he quoting from Cross Creek? Loved that book.

  48. 48
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Or Romanov.

    Both families met the sort of fates that the Bush Crime Family should.

  49. 49
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Well, when he was born, was his citizenship confirmed as American?

    There is a statute dating from the late 18th century that addressed the issue of children born of American citizens who are serving overseas as diplomats.

    Don’t forget the first iteration of birferism was directed by Paulista scum at John McCain.

  50. 50
    FFrank says:

    You’re going to get the same argument with Hilary Clinton who I don’t mind considering she’s more than competent enough.

    My only problem is with Hillary and with Jeb, is we are not a monarchy and yes, they are entitled to run if they want but we’re seeing the same names bandied about in the same family. I believe in Hybrid Vigor, so bring in new people with different perspectives and mix it up with maybe an Asian/Latino/Black Woman Scientist that becomes a Governor or Senator. Or maybe a Senator Warren and Governor Schweitzer. Or Tammy Duckworth/Elliot Spitzer combo, we need more willingness to bite back. Obama just lays back and gives the Republicans enough rope to hang themselves. I’d have the same issue with Roosevelt (if I was born back then) although they were both above average Presidents.

    In regard to Diploma Mills. Mountain State University in WV was closed down for not having enough admin for the amount of Students and other improprieties. I think this is also because of the new G.I. Bill which is very generous.

  51. 51
    Keith G says:

    President Barack Obama hasn’t even been inaugurated yet, and the Village is already talking about how awesome his successor Jeb Bush is going to be.

    While I have no doubt that this is occurring (after all mindless speculation is the mother’s milk of the political media), assertions need links.

    Who are many voices making up this wave of village pundit support?

  52. 52

    My reactionary sister in FLA worked for the state, in their unemployment office. Six months before she was to retire Jeb privatized unemployment and put her out on the street. She managed to be a substitute teacher to reach her retirement. Jeb, after he left office, sold Lehman Bros. paper to various state and county entities, further ripping off public employees. My sister still thinks that Obama is, what were her words, “the greatest hoax perpetrated on America”, she is sure that Hostess went down because of the damned unions and I’m guessing she’s ready to vote for Jeb if she survives the next four years.

    Some people are ground under the great wheel and others jump right in.

  53. 53

    Off-topic, if anyone is employing a hit man to take out Chuck Todd, please post where donations can be made.

  54. 54
    Keith G says:

    @Bob In Portland: What’s the buzz?

  55. 55
    J R in WV says:

    Well, Mountain State U also didn’t have enough qualified teachers and lost their accreditation. The students can’t count their credits towards a major, just as core requirements. Mostly, down the tubes, still in debt.

    A real shame. There are plenty of real state colleges in WV where credits transfer and everything. It does cost a lot more now than when I attended on the medium/old Vietnam era GI bill.

    Private “colleges” that actually have to put on their commercials that “these credits may not transfer” should have no student body!

  56. 56
    Maude says:

    @Bob In Portland:
    Not a wise thing to write online.

  57. 57

    @Keith G: Had two Voodoo bacon maple bars this a.m. and I’m sinking into sugar sleep. I guess it was a buzz for a little while.

  58. 58

    @Maude: Yeah, you’re right, Maude.

    Sorry, Chuck. I just want you unemployed and dependent on the social safety net.

  59. 59
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    Dynasties have no place in American politics (it’s why I’m lukewarm at best about Hillary running again, and really hoping she won’t). There’s no need for yet another Bush to have a go at the big chair.

    And yeah, I haven’t forgotten about the whole Schiavo circus either, which is a big stinking counterexample to the claim that the GOP are all about “limited government” and “state’s rights”.

  60. 60
    mainmati says:

    @Walker: Also I think his wife was arrested for failing to pay Customs duties and some of his kids have been convicted of DUIs so there’s baggage there. Of course, there’s also IOKIYAR to consider.

  61. 61
    Marmot says:

    Zandar is good. Praises be upon him.

    And thanks for knowing it’s “champing.”

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