Obviously the supporters of the 2013 Lakota levy have no idea how things work in the private sector. Only in government could they say the kind of things they do and expect to get away with it. In journalism, at least the way the industry used to be, editors would force answers to questions, who, what, why, when and where. In manufacturing, the standard question when something is amiss would be to identify the “five whys.” But with Lakota schools and the levy cheerleaders advocating tax increases upon a community for some mythical reason, let us identify the Letter to the Editor of Libby Williams who is this time around the Lakota Levy Chairperson for the tax increase. What is shown below is the letter Libby wrote unedited as it appeared in Today’s Pulse, Sunday, October 20, 2013.
Keep Lakota Excellence a Priority
For the last two years, our district leaders have been listening. They met with parents, business leaders, seniors, supporters, and nonsuppoters alike to find out what our community desires from their schools. Those thoughts, paired with the knowledge of what our students’ needs are for a quality and sustainable education, were used to determine the levy that we have on the ballot Nov. 5.
We have seen over $20 million in cuts to programs and people. Over 600 students can no longer participate in activities because they are cost prohibitive. Those changers are starting to affect our product – out students.
Let’s keep quality and excellence a priority. Join me in voting yes for Lakota – either at the board of elections before Nov. or at your precinct on Election Day.
Every vote counts to help get our schools and our community back on track. We are Lakota, and we need you.
Lakota Levy Chair
Without question Libby is just a nice concerned parent who wants what she thinks is best for her child. Every time there is one of these levy attempts Lakota’s management finds a few neurotic parents to use for their needs, so I won’t lambast the poor woman needlessly. The world is full of people like this pro tax chairperson For Lakota that are full of good intentions. However, it must be remembered that the path to hell is always paved with good intentions. In fact, most of the time, the path to hell is an 8 lane highway while the path to heaven is a dirt road nearly covered with grown over grass. The path to hell is always lined with all the fun stuff, the emotional eye candy, while the path to heaven is uneventful and rather desolate, so the former has a lot more attraction over the latter, but the facts remain. So in order to ascertain the ridiculousness of the statements provided in the pro tax letter, let us apply the industry standard “Five Whys” to understand that the statements from Libby are simply those from a Lakota cheerleader and have nothing to do with the conditions of the game being played. Let’s look now at some of the key parts of Libby’s letter and provide the proper questions analyzed the way the private sector does. After each “WHY” I will provide the answer.
For the last two years, our district leaders have been listening. They met with parents, business leaders, seniors, supporters, and nonsuppoters alike to find out what our community desires from their schools
- 1. Why did the “leaders” meet?
- a. Obviously Mantia and the school board were using a proven Saul Alinsky method of consensus building where they spent many tens of thousands of tax dollars on the Jeffery Stec facilitator methods of gathering everyone together and letting them vent with a kind of “group hug” mentality. Lakota never planned to “listen” to anybody they only planned to let people believe it so that unity could be formed in those collaborations.
- 2. Why did the leaders believe they needed to listen to the community after three elections told them the answer?
- a. The over 18,000 voters who cast NO votes during the last election was all the voice of the community Lakota needed. Yet they chose to ignore those elections and spend even greater money on building “teamwork.” No Lakota Levy actually hosted some of these events. It was obvious that Mantia believed that these consensus building exercises would take the edge off the tempers and bring the community around to seeing things her way. Once she had all the different groups together who opposed her tax increases in front of Jeffery she believed that they would not oppose her in the next election. She never planned to listen, only to take the edge off everyone’s tempers. Obviously now that the signs for No Lakota Levy are out again, and there are ads in the paper, a new website and more people than ever wanting to join No Lakota Levy, those efforts, and the many thousands of dollars they cost, were a complete waste.
- 3. Why two years, were they hoping that voters would forget about the previous three defeats and the conditions contributing to those defeats? Did they hope that No Lakota Levy would disband and go back to other business? Did they hope that I would lose the desire to engage the situation and move on to something else? What is so important about waiting two years?
- a. Lakota obviously believed that the “Rich Hoffman” era of tax resistance would fade if they stopped throwing fuel on the fire. This time around they have made a point not to engage directly with aggression hoping to soften their image after my exposure of their antics over the years. They determined to prove that they were the opposite of everything I have said about them. So they cut a deal with me through No Lakota Levy to back off and let them recover their public image—which I agreed to so to save the community further grief. A two year break at the ballot box was worth it. But the minute they announced their intentions, it was time to get back to work. Now they have what I promised in the Cincinnati Enquirer two years ago when they came after me with all their blazing guns, which backfired—that in the next election they would have to worry about two tax opponents instead of one, and since I wasn’t working with No Lakota Levy any longer, I would be free to speak my mind, instead of the softer dialogue I used before as a spokesman to a group who didn’t feel the kind of conviction I do against public education in general.
- 4. When they met with those groups, why did Lakota then determine that it was OK to put on a levy when many of those groups expressed that taxes were too high already?
- a. After the last levy, and during the “community conversations” Lakota was told they needed to reduce their wages at Lakota by 5%. However, Lakota decided not to listen to that statement and proceed on with further wage increases for 2014 when a new union contract is coming due. When property owners told Jeffery and the gang that taxes were already too high, there was a lot of head nodding, but no action taken, purposely.
- 5. Why does Lakota believe listening is enough? Why is “action” on that information not pursued? Anyone can listen, but it’s what is done with the information that is more important.
- a. This is the typical reaction of any government institution. They will do what they determine to be best. When they “listen” they only hope to pull you into their line of thinking. They will not yield their position. They only care to advance matters further to the political left. By listening, they hope that through kindness they can pull people over to their beliefs. But they never had any intention of taking community suggestions applying them to the business side of the Lakota levy. They only hoped to delay a tax increase for a short time and let tempers cool so they could try again before the 2014 union contract negotiations. That was their only objective during the entire time.
Those thoughts, paired with the knowledge of what our students’ needs are for a quality and sustainable education, were used to determine the levy that we have on the ballot Nov. 5.
- 1. Why is “quality” in question?
- a. As it has been stated here at Overmanwarrior’s Wisdom many times, Lakota is a good school not because of the employees they have, but due to the kind of parents of the students themselves. Most of the families producing the children at Lakota at least care about their kids, they have nice homes, nice jobs, and nice cars with Blue Ray players in the back seats for kids to watch while being shuttled around from one activity to another—the parents at least are engaged in their children’s lives. There aren’t many neighborhoods in the Lakota district filled with degenerate welfare recipients and unmanaged children with token “baby mommas.” Most parents at least care about their children’s futures, even if that concern often gets translated into neurosis. So Lakota is starting with kids who have a generally good home life, which is the key to raising successful children. Lakota’s success is due exclusively to the quality of their students, not the quality of the staff. I have said many times, all the employees at Lakota could be fired and replaced with new employees’ right out of college, and the results would be the same, because the kids and their parents are better than in areas around Cincinnati where strong family values are not recognized.
- 2. How does money create quality, and why is money short at Lakota?
- a. Money does not create quality, so there is no statistic that Lakota can present to justify the over $60K average that employees at Lakota make through their collective bargaining agreements. Money is paid to reward those who are exceptional—but through the union collective bargaining agreement the exceptional and the bad all get paid together. The teacher who really cares about the life of their students gets paid on a scale the same as the sexual deviant who is trying to “bang” the mother one of his students, (You know who you are cocksucker) or send sexually provocative texts to their students hoping to get back naked pictures of teenagers in heat. This whole collective bargaining concept is an absolute joke, and should be abolished. The politicians who allowed the union lobby to shove them in this direction in the 1980s should be walked off a short plank into a sea of sharks and piranhas, and we should never look back! And no, I do not like bad people, or those who are up to no good. I especially do not like to be forced to pay for these scum bags with my tax money.
- 3. Why are student needs connected to the radicalism of labor disputes?
- a. We saw the same tactic during the recent government shutdown, parks were closed, monuments roped off, while President Obama spent $4 million to fly to Hawaii on Air Force One. The bussing cuts, the pay to play fees, the cuts in electives, and every painful imposition at Lakota was done to hurt the tax payer by hurting their children. Meanwhile the teachers are banging each other and trying to seduce their students with a Brave New World orgy porgy mentality. (Go ahead, click the link to see the truth). It is so common I am tired of hearing about all the incidents. The behavior is reckless, and pathetic. Lakota wants to justify their collective bargaining agreement with their employees which averages over $63K per year! To protect that, they will put the hurt on children and their parents in a New York minute—and that is the exclusive reason that students have suffered. It was Superintendent Mantia’s call, her fault, and her track record that she now has to defend.
- 4. Why is education not sustainable?
- a. Lakota has maintained an Excellent with Distinction now every year for a decade in spite of not having a levy passed since 2005. I fought that levy back in 2005 too, and so my resistance to taxes is not new. The quality of the school is not determined by the administrators or the teachers; it is determined by the parents—as stated. The Excellence with Distinction is a scam that is awarded to superintendents who are good at playing the political angle. It has nothing to do with quality. Lakota is in the tough position of having to make a decision to deliberately wreck their ranking so they can justify their tax increases, or letting it resume being good proving that money does not equate to quality. That strategy was implemented long ago to draw out this very purpose, and the results are clear. Their comments that the education level is not sustainable is deliberately vague, the sustainability of the wage levels is not, but the class sizes, the types of classes, the condition of the schools are all very sustainable. The collective bargaining agreement with employees making all over $60K per year is not.
- 5. Why is this information being placed at this time in 2013, specifically in November.
- a. As stated Lakota has a contract renewal with the LEA in June of 2014 so to get the money lined up for the pay increases that have been promised, they must have the money lined up by the start of the next fiscal year. Lakota gambled when they cut their deal with me hoping that two years would be enough time for my influence to fade from the public scene and the network that No Lakota Levy had established would erode away. They figured that if they could isolate the press from my “radicalism” then they’d have a shot. They also wanted to wait for an off year election. It would have been murder for them to try this attempt during the last presidential election because the Lakota school district is mostly raw conservative. The only supporters of Lakota who are not neurotic parents are fellow government employees who live off looted tax money. This year there aren’t many big elections, no governor races, no congressional or senate races, only smaller issues—so the schools are attacking now hoping they can get enough turnout without having too much turnout. Too much hurts them, and too little turn-out hurts them, they need it to be just the right amount where it’s all the neurotic levy supporters while the No Votes stay home. This is why Fairfield is trying for another levy so soon, Lebanon, and so on with many dozens of others. It’s all about timing and getting the odds stacked in their favor. They don’t give a damn about the actual will of the community, only to skip by the process with numbers to their favor. They could have tried for spring or summer elections, but they didn’t at Lakota because they knew the numbers were not there. They hoped by using the community conversations method that they’d build up a voter base, take away the opposition, and put time and distance from their antics of the past. But they must do it before 2014. They also know that they will have to go to voters again in 2017, so they need time for people to forget about this tax increase so they can have about 3 years before asking again. Those costs are driven exclusively by their collective bargaining agreement with the LEA.
We have seen over $20 million in cuts to programs and people. Over 600 students can no longer participate in activities because they are cost prohibitive.
- Why was $20 million cut?
- As painful as Lakota tries to make it sound, the $20 million in cuts are perfectly in line with what they should be due to declining enrollment. Lakota as a district is entering a phase of mature development. The homes are more expensive than average meaning there are fewer buyers able to live in the community who have school age kids—leaving more mature investors to purchase real estate. Most of those mature investors do not have children in the district, so enrollment is dropping at Lakota considerably. CLICK HERE TO SEE AN EXPLAINATION. Not having those $20 million in cuts would have been irresponsible. That would mean that there would be $20 million worth of non essential personnel on the Lakota payroll. The fact that those cuts occurred is to the credit of No Lakota Levy for forcing the issue. If there had not been a defeat in the previous three elections, Lakota would not have made those needed cuts. They will have to make many more cuts in the future—because of declining enrollment.
- Why can over 600 students no longer participate in activities?
- 600 students were pushed out of the extra circular activities because of the enormous costs to the students. No Lakota Levy tried to help with this by releiveing students of some of the pressure, but this caused Lakota to lash out at me very publically as they knew they could not afford to lose the children as an extortion device. CLICK HERE TO READ A FORBES ARTICLE DONE ABOUT ME, AND NO LAKOTA LEVY. The fees created by the mismanagement of Lakota’s resources caused 600 students to lose the ability to participate in extra circular activities. The services were paid for by the community, yet the management at Lakota chose to use children in an exploitive way to pad their collective bargaining agreements. It’s that simple.
- Why are extracurricular activities cost prohibitive?
- The fee was set high on activities so to make it hard on the parents. The intention is for parents to complain to their neighbors and for the information to spread like wildfire from home to home and upon election time, voters are supposed to vote in favor of tax increases to alleviate the pain placed on the original complaining neighbor. This tactic is taught at Levy University each year at the OSBA Conference in Columbus, Ohio. How do I know—I have many friends who have been to it and reported exactly what goes on there. The practice is EXTORTION!
- Why were cuts needed?
- There weren’t. They were implemented as an extortive measure.
- Why is management so poor that these conditions arise?
- Lakota management does not have control of the ship, by law. The union lobby has made it so that legally school boards can do very little to control their budgets. Anything the school board tries to do to manage their money ends up disputed and in arbitration. This is why the only kind of superintendents that are brought into a district is former teachers who have been molded by the system for the benefits of the system. Where Lakota management goes wrong is that they side with their radical labor force rather than the rest of the community so that they can keep the internal peace. The union radicals use nice people like Libby Williams to do their dirty work for them as they hide in the shadows and drive up costs behind the exploitation of children. It’s a bad system that goes so far to be considered outright evil.
Every vote counts to help get our schools and our community back on track. We are Lakota, and we need you.
- 1. This is why I call the levy advocates cheerleaders, and why I think the whole idea is so stupid. The score in the game could be 100 to nothing and the cheerleaders still stand on the sideline doing their little dances and saying things like, “let’s go team.” I addressed this issue back in April provoking this response in the Pulse Journal from one of those levy cheerleaders who reside in the shadows behind Libby. CLICK HERE TO READ MUCH MORE, but here is the letter written on the subject.
Wasn’t Rich Hoffman already discredited by the media one year ago because of phrases like this and previous comments such as “…crazy PTA moms and their minions of latte drinking despots with diamond rings the size of car tires and assess to match…”
Mr. Hoffman claims that Lakota will “see an influx” of tax revenue after new developments are built. That sounds great, but it’s not reality. Commercial property contributes very little to school funding and has not kept pace with residential growth. Gov. John Kasich cut $1.8 billion from schools over the last two years and his current budget increases funding for charter schools and proposes additional vouchers on private schools, once again depriving public education of money.
Lakota Treasurer Jenni Logan predicts the district will face a $1.8 million dollar budget deficit by 2014. This is after $35 million in cuts over the last three years, which has resulted in minimal bus transportation; larger classes; fewer days for art, music and gym; no reading specialists; a dismantled gifted program, etc.
Even with these cuts, Lakota schools are still worth “cheering” for. We are not part of a losing team, but our children and grandchildren could lose out on future opportunities if there isn’t more financial support. So, let’s drown out the Rich Hoffmans of our community by making the next levy a successful one. If that happens, we all win.
- As stated above, Lakota hopes to drown out people like me so that nobody sees what’s really going on. If the text above is clicked on, I dispute everything said point for point. But basically, the levy cheerleaders have no grip on reality, no understanding of economics, no concept that they are allowing their children to be used as extortion pawns, and no will to question anything. They just want to stand on the sideline and do their cheering for the sake of feeling important.
I could speak forever on all the reasons why the Lakota levy is a bad idea and why the people behind it are up to no good. But the best way to beat them is with a levy defeat. The best way to shut them up, shut them down, and drown them out is by showing up to vote against them. The only way to manage money in the Lakota district is to keep it out of their hands. If voters do that, they can strike a blow that will resonate for many years. It will end careers that deserve to be ended, it will flush out the garbage as they will seek employment elsewhere, and it will set a standard that other schools will have to duplicate. The way to silence the lies is to force them to eat the truth, and the way to do that is to take away their money. And that is the real fear behind the cheers, is that if Lakota does not get this levy, their bluffs will have been called, and they will be forced into a labor dispute that will force them to pick sides. The only way that can happen is if voters show up, and show up in unusually high numbers to decline tax increases and force Lakota to live within its means.