Live from Music Row Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael to the studio.
During the show, Carmichael weighed in on the recent Breitbart article where teachers’ unions have cheered for no more school choice. He was convinced that should Joe Biden decide to do away with charter schools it would only enrage Black and Hispanic parents of students who are stuck in underperforming school districts and argued that the tax for charter schools be put upon the super-wealthy.
Leahy: We are here in the studio with us now Crom Carmichael. Crom, so the teachers’ unions there’s a story at Breitbart News by my good friend Dr. Susan Berry. Headline: Teachers’ Unions Gleeful: ‘Bye Betsy,’ End to School Choice. There’s going to be an end to school choice they say. What do you think of this?
Carmichael: Well, I forgot to mention. I’m going to answer your question, but I need to add something to what I said before.
Leahy: You got it.
Carmichael: And that is those other things that happened in the election. Donald Trump has changed the Republican Party. He has fundamentally changed it. And he’s done it by making the Republican Party the party of the working men and women of this country and the party of opportunity for Blacks and Hispanics and Asians. Of course, Asians don’t need a lot of help because they’re doing so well.
And that’s because they are very smart and they’ve got a great work ethic. But the reason Trump mentions them all the time for some reason and I can’t tell you what it is but Asians have historically voted for Democrats, even though they live completely like Republicans. They are very very self-sufficient blah blah blah.
But Trump, the Black vote now, and the Hispanic vote now are very much up in the air because Donald Trump has made it clear that America is a land of opportunity. If you work hard you can do well regardless of your race. The Democrats want to say the opposite is true. They want to tell Black and Hispanic students that the only way you’re going to do well is to put us in charge and let us make government great and big.
And, by the way, we’ll throw you a few crumbs along the way. So that’s changed. Now getting back to your point, education is the key. It’s the Civil Rights issue of our time. If the Democrats try to close down charter schools, that is the most racist and bigoted thing a party can do because it is telling Black people and Hispanic people that we are going to force you to go to the lousy schools that we control.
Leahy: Yeah, exactly.
Carmichael: And you might as well go ahead and finish it and say and we’re going to do that because we want you to remain uneducated and in poverty so that you’ll be forced to support us. And I don’t think that’s a winning message.
Leahy: I agree with you. And the beneficiaries of all these efforts and Biden has basically said I’ll stop new charter schools. He’s kind of tried to thread the needle but he’s going to stop them.
Carmichael: By the way, he can’t do that. I know but he’s he could do that if he packed the Supreme Court with a bunch of fellow racists. He could do that, but he can’t with this Supreme Court because this Supreme Court will rule that charter schools are a state issue because it always has been.
Leahy: They’ll cut off federal funding for the charter schools and they’re going to do a lot of things to shut them down.
Carmichael: How do they cut off the federal funding? You’ve got to pass a law.
Leahy: He’ll do that by executive order.
Carmichael: And then the Supreme Court will strike it down.
Leahy: Well, we’ll see.
Carmichael: What I’m saying is is that this Supreme Court is not a bunch of racists just like Joe Biden is. But his cronies are a bunch of racists. And by the way, we can say that and I’m going to say that over and over and over again. And to my friends who support Biden, please reconsider! Because if Biden says I’m going to make sure that Black and Hispanic children do not have an opportunity to get a quality education then join the KKK.
Leahy: This is what his policy is going to be.
Carmichael: And by the way, Black Lives Matter is a hundred percent behind not allowing for the education of Black children.
Leahy: Well, so obviously the hypocrisy there and the inconsistency…
Carmichael: It’s just astounding.
Leahy: But here’s my question to you Crom. If Biden was to be successful in closing down charter schools, what do you think the impact would be on public education? Because I have a theory on this. I wanted to run it by you.
Carmichael: Well, if you if he were successful at shutting down charter schools, then Black and Hispanic parents would be outraged. But they still are forced to go to lousy government-run schools because you can’t replace them with private schools quickly enough. You just simply can’t. And that could maybe be a voting issue. I mean how in the world could a Black member of the House support doing away with the charter schools that are helping the Black constituents that they claim to care about? How could you do that and not and not be kind of the reverse of an Uncle Tom?
Leahy: Well, that’s exactly what I think is likely to happen though.
Carmichael: I don’t. If the Republicans control the Senate then the Supreme Court will be nine members. And I do not believe that the Democrats can change public policy to that with only executive orders.
Leahy: Well, they’re going to try for sure.
Carmichael: They may try but I’m saying I do not believe they will succeed.
Leahy: So here’s what I think is going to happen. I think we are actually at a turning point in public attitudes towards K-12 education. I think that if the Biden administration is elected and he is inaugurated and if they begin to close down charter schools by means legal, extralegal, or whatever, you’re going to see a revolution in attitudes towards public education. The support for public education is going to evaporate.
Carmichael: Please Michael, when you refer to it call them government-run schools.
Leahy: Government-run schools.
Carmichael: Support for government-run schools. Charter schools are not government run by the public.
Leahy: Got it.
Carmichael: So let’s be sure that we use that language.
Leahy: But what I think is if it was going to happen is the following. There will be a burgeoning of great private schools that can provide high-quality affordable education. And we have an example right here in Tennessee.
Carmichael: That’s right.
Leahy: Thales Academy. What I think is going to happen Crom is there will be people on our side. Wealthy people on our side who are going to say okay, now is the time. I think there’s gonna be a lot of money put up and you’re going to see Thales Academy and Thales Academy-like schools popping up all over the country next year.
Carmichael: Now let me make an addition to what you’re saying. And that is this, that Joe Biden says he wants to raise taxes on the wealthy. He calls those people making over four hundred thousand dollars. I think what’s going to happen is assuming the Republicans control the Senate all bills of spending and revenue originate in the House.
Leahy: Except for Obamacare. They’re supposed to.
Carmichael: So they originate in the House. I think Mitch McConnell is going to tell Nancy Pelosi that’s your responsibility to go ahead and do them. You go ahead and create your bills and pass your legislation, which will put enormous burdens on her members. And then send it over and we’ll think about it.
Then we’ll look at it. Here’s what I would do if I were the Republicans in the Senate. I would say we do agree that the super-rich are not paying their fair share. But the super-rich is not based on income. It’s based on net worth and publicly traded companies. And so I am happy to tax Warren Buffett for his unrealized gains and make it so that they go back and they have a compounding effect in the negative so that they actually increase the amount of the tax.
Bezos, Zuckerberg, Dorsey, and all the people who are worth over 10 billion dollars who’ve made all that money and do not pay taxes on it. And have seen it grow untaxed. And then say we’ll take that money and we’ll spend it on charter schools for Black and Hispanic people. That’s our bargain. You say you want to help Black and Hispanic people? Then step up and do it and we’ll do it by taxing the super-rich.
Leahy: That’s a great idea. And I think you’re getting to the point of piles of money that can be set up and put together to create alternatives to government-run schools.
Carmichael: Yeah, that’s it.
Leahy: Whether it be a charter or here in Tennessee it’s only $5,000. a year to go to Thales Academy. I mean, this is not like $20,000. a year.
Carmichael: And Metro spends $13,000. a year. and there are no capital costs. Now just for your listeners out there, on just how poorly run our government-run school system is. You have $13,000. dollars per student on an operating base not a capital cost average of 20 kids in a class. That’s $265,000. per classroom. A teacher all in might make $80,000. if they are a senior teacher. Where’s all that other money going?
Leahy: If you’re a parent out there it’s time to look at government-run schools and say not for my kids.
Carmichael: And here in Nashville, start supporting candidates for the council and anyplace else who want the freedom of choice on schools and not being forced into lousy government-run schools
Listen to the full third hour here:
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