In normal life, when there is no penalty for failure, failures proliferate. In government, failure, far from being penalized, is often rewarded. Those whose bad judgments botched the Capitol’s security on Jan. 6 now are granted seemingly unlimited deference regarding their judgments about needed security measures. Hence their infuriating project currently scarring the epicenter of American democracy: more than three miles of seven-foot-tall fencing that is topped by razor wire and patrolled by soldiers. This seals off from a phantom menace the Capitol, the Supreme Court and the Library of Congress, symbols of liberty under law, and the reign of intelligence.
My intrepid Mercatus Center colleague Veronique de Rugy warns of the folly of charging that great geyser of cronyism, the U.S. Export-Import Bank, with any responsibility for pushing for the reduction of carbon emissions.
Thankfully, Grayson’s character is fictitious. But I was reminded of a similar type of duplicity when listening to a recent interview with Randi Weingarten, who the New York Times describes as “the nation’s most powerful teachers union president.”
As much as we can know anything, we know that keeping schools closed harms kids. This is why there is universal consensus among experts, ranging from the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and even UNICEF, among others, that schools should be reopened as soon as possible.
Yet, when asked the softball question of whether there is any point at which the damage from extended school closures is not reversible, Weingarten replied that, “No, I don’t believe that. I believe that kids are resilient and kids will recover.”
You get that? You could keep schools closed for the next 5 years and there wouldn’t be any lasting harm to kids, according to Weingarten. The boldness of that lie is on par with Marla Grayson’s claim that she is simply someone who cares a lot.