Want your kid to go to summer camp this year? How about one sponsored by ALEC, the shadow organization that sponsors and writes right-wing legislation to be shared by the states? ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, is offering "Kid's Congress' in New Orleans this year. What better way to indoctrinate youth than to mix the fun of New Orleans with Koch-funded politics? Am I the only one that finds this bordering on subversive and distasteful?
ALEC is having its national meeting in New Orleans the first week in August. Right-wing state lawmakers (ALEC members) from around the country will be in attendance. Many will bring their families and ALEC offers its "Kid's Congress' to the attendees. Why the concern? Learn about ALEC, and then tell me you would let your child attend!
ALEC is the shadowy, corporate-funded organization that has sponsored and written the following state legislative proposals:
* Voter ID bills that tighten registration requirements and disenfranchise up to 20 million voters. According to the Brennan Center for Justice, over 20 million will be disenfranchised by the new laws. They are mainly students, the elderly, the poor and the disabled.
* Bills that have assaulted and destroyed collective bargaining rights in states such as Wisconsin and Michigan. ALEC stands behind laws that would roll-back employee protections, worker's compensation and even do away with the minimum wage.
* Bills that eliminate pension plans and turn them into 401K's
* Bills designed to overturn the Affordable Care Act. ALEC offers each state a "Guide to Repealing Obamacare". Because it would certainly be horrible if we both reduced overall health care spending in the U.S. while also making affordable health insurance available to 32 million more Americans.
* Bills that eliminate environmental protections. Not only are the bills already written(ALEC says they have 15 model bills), the state legislators can work with ALEC's task force to launch an all out assault on EPA rules and regulations.
* Bills that lower corporate tax rates. In fact, to assist in this effort, ALEC has written the "State Budget Reform Tool Kit". It is a must have for states that want to lower taxes for the wealthy and raise taxes for the middle class and poor.
* Bills that strip education of funding and decimate local control of schools.
This list could go on and on. It includes prison reform (and privatization) legislation, legislation designed to "protect innocent corporations from liability for asbestos poisoning", how states can effectively market pharmaceuticals, as well as "how to privatize" almost every sector of government, along with instructions on how to frame the bills to make them sound as advantageous as possible.
ALEC has also been responsible for providing model legislation that tightens immigration requirements, similar to Arizona's "Papers Please' Law.
That is certainly where I would want to send my kid to summer camp! I want my kids to learn how to disenfranchise voters, privatize prisons, rid the country of unions, do away with clean air and water and strip education of funding. In fact, I want my kids to learn how to be a corporate lobbyist; then they can make the laws that America needs. Maybe ALEC will offer an activity that teaches the kids how to buy a Congressman! That's one that I don't want them to miss! Better yet, maybe they will offer a session or two on "How To Become A Beloved Governor Just Like Scott Walker"!
While Your State Legislators Get A Scholarship, Their Kids Get Indoctrinated!
While ALEC has offered scholarships to your state lawmakers which consists of a $1900 gift, the idea of "Kiddie Congress" is perhaps even better! Maybe next year, a class in Koch-cloning will be offered!
I have reviewed the agenda and schedule. Most of it sounds inocuous enough, with the exception of the first 2 to 4 hours of each morning, which is designated as: Kid's Congress Camp. It is the only time that the schedule DOES NOT provide a description of the activities offered. Why not? What goes on during that time?
Further, in the release of liability and registration form, it states:
"ACCENT on Children's Arrangements, Inc. will provide exciting children's programs for the ALEC 2011 annual meeting. The children and young adults in the program will be entertained and cared for all day with activities tailored to meet their needs. Please note that these programs are for children only. Parents and/or caretakers are not allowed to accompany the child(ren) in the Activity Center or the off-site Youth Tours. American Legislative Exchange Council can offer parents a safe and secure, child-pleasing and educational experience for their children."
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