“When it comes to paying contractors, the sky is the limit; when it comes to financing the basic functions of the state, the coffers are empty.” ― Naomi Klein, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster CapitalismIf you want to see how disaster capitalism works in real time, watch for shock-and-awe Gov. Bruce Rauner to appoint Paul Vallas as head of predominantly-black Chicago State University.
|Vallas may have cost Quinn the election.|
If it was up to the voters, he couldn't be elected dog-catcher. Vallas, the faux Democrat whose selection as Pat Quinn's running mate was a major factor in Quinn's loss to Rauner in the gov's race, is one of the most despised figures in the field of education. As I recall, he even lost his own primary run for governor to none other than Rod Blagojevich. From Chicago to Philly, to New Orleans, to Haiti, to Chile, and Bridgeport, he has left chaos, and division in his wake.
His top-down, school reform approach, pushing so-called "choice", privatization and busting teacher unions, puts him on par with Trump and Betsy DeVos.
His appointment comes at a time when his former partner in Synesi Associates, Gary Solomon, is on his way to prison, along with Barbara Byrd-Bennett in the SUPES corruption scandal. Synesi is one of the indicted companies that hired Byrd-Bennett as a consultant, in return for her support in obtaining millions of dollars in CPS no-bid contracts. Vallas not only hired Solomon and his companies when he worked in Philadelphia, but brought Solomon with him to New Orleans.
Vallas is no more qualified to run a university than he was to run a public schools system. In fact, the governor of CT tried to pass a special dispensation and failed after a state superior court judge ruled that Vallas did not complete a state-mandated school leadership program and was therefore not qualified to be superintendent of Bridgeport. He was then run out of town by voters.
I'm hoping CSU faculty and students will rally in opposition to Rauner's appointment.