A Preview of the Gianforte Education Plan?

Given his world-class Internet expertise, Greg Gianforte will probably be able to find this post, but in the event he’s too distracted posting No Trespassing signs on public lands, I beg you all not to show him this story, or we will have a new Gianforte education policy in place by next Monday.

Soon Wisconsin’s former senator Ron Johnson offered a brilliant plan to save billions of dollars in higher education: just show videos!

From ThinkProgress:

“If you want to teach the Civil War across the country, are you better off having, I don’t know, tens of thousands of history teachers that kind of know the subject, or would you be better off popping in 14 hours of Ken Burns’s Civil War tape and then have those teachers proctor based on that excellent video production already done?” Johnson said. “You keep duplicating that over all these different subject areas.”
Johnson also criticized what he called the “higher education cartel” and said he wanted to know why, if “we’ve got the internet,” there need to be different instructors to teach the same subjects in the first place.

Most people here in Montana are smart enough to know that students learn best with actual teachers and professors in the classroom, but one has to imagine that someone who made many of his millions “taking outsourcing of jobs to new levels” would love the idea of replacing educators with PBS videos and YouTube.

So let’s keep this between us, please?

If you appreciate an independent voice holding Montana politicians accountable and informing voters, and you can throw a few dollars a month our way, we would certainly appreciate it.

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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba has been writing about Montana politics since 2005 and teaching high school English since 2000. He's a former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.
His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.
In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.


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  • Don, perhaps you’ve read the book The Ugly American? (a great book btw) Well, GG is the ugly outta stater! He’s gonna move here and tell us Montanans how we should live our lives. What arrogance. What hubris. What CHUZTPAH! The guy is a real piece of work. I can not stand to look at the guy with that shiny bald head which he mistake for a halo!

    And I’m still mad as hell at his comments on Native Americans. He’s an IDIOT!

    He said that they need a lack of nepotism. Wellllll, does he even realize that there’s a reason why every kid at Browning calls every adult either auntie, uncle, or cousin? No, I don’t think he does. So allow me to explain.

    GG, you stupid moronic, chrome dome, outta state sumbitch, it’s because they really ARE all related! You see, dufus, the tribe was nearly wiped out to the point of extinction. I can’t remember the exact number of Blackfoot who were actually left, but it was damn few. Hence, they really ARE all kind of related! It’s truly amazing that there are any Blackfoot left! (kinda like the Maori in New Zealand, who can all trace their heritage to one of the seven canoes)

    So, it’s kind hard NOT to show nepotism, for who you gonna hire that isn’t related to you, a white bald dude from back east??? Jus’ wonderin’.

    And then he bemoans their “lack of a culture of success”. Welllll, maybe Pelon should head on down to Ashland and give some of his billions to the St. Labre school! Seems that if you talk to the teachers down there, they’re having a LOT of success!

    But GG ain’t into giving to any group that doesn’t believe the earth is four thousand years old.

    And really, no culture of success? Maybe he should talk to some of the state champion Indian athletes that I’ve coached. Or see the championship teams that the Indians have produced. The guy is a true bugnutz! He doesn’t know one damn thing about Montana and it shows. He really should just STFU, and let his billions do his talking for him. Only problem is, that when a guy has money comin’ out the ass, THAT’S where he generally talks from too! GG is the perfect example. Impressed by that? Me neither!

    • p.s. Oh, and Don, I almost forgot. I know that you are a reader, so I would suggest that you get yourself a copy of Living With a Wild God by Barbara Ehrenreich, a good Butte gal and one of my favorite intellectuals. AND, she is a great writer. Went to Reed College in Portland back in the sixties. Absolutely the best college in the country at the time for producing intellectuals. If you’re not familiar with it, google it.

  • Wow guys…..

    Montana Tech to administer CodeMontana
    Program started by Greg Gianforte and Rob Irizarry aimed at introducing computer science to junior high and high school students across Montana will now be administered by Montana Tech.

    CodeMontana, a program comprising of over 1,200 junior high and high school students across Montana will now be administered by Montana Tech. The program was created by Greg Gianforte and Rob Irizarry to introduce junior high and high school students to computer programming at earlier ages. CodeMontana’s relocation is being made possible by a gift of $220,000 from the Gianforte Family Foundation.

    • Bill,

      Awesome… so, where is the efficacy date related to Code Montana? The frank answer is that there isn’t any because people start “MOOCs” like Code Montana and don’t finish them.

      Without a teacher involved, a lot of students will start and not finish. We can’t YouTube-ize education and expect the masses educated.

      Epic bullshit.

  • I bet if you guys came up with a great idea to promote Montana’s education the Gianforte Foundation would sponsor your proposal in a heartbeat. What is your CodeMontana? If you need I could probably find you an email address to submit your proposal. Do you want cheese with that wine or do you want your CodeMontana in the headlines?

    • I just DID, willy! Has Gianfrote given any of his billions to St. Labre??? An Native American school! Did Gianfrote give anything to the Native American kids who might want to learn computer skills too other than lip service? If not, WHY not? Guess it’s easier to whine about things than actually do something about it! BTW, $220,000 for GG is about like me givin’ a nickel to the bum standin’ by Walmart. Same amount of hurt! Sorry, willy, but I’m STILL not impressed.

        • Once again, Bill, GG’s “gift/tax write off” is my nickel to a bum standing by Walmart. Why doesn’t GG do like that hated liberal Ted Turner. He gave a measely BILLION DOLLARS to the U.N.! Now THAT’S puttin’ your money where your mouth is!

          GG’s playing games with your mind. You see, Bill, if you don’t give ’til it hurts, it’s not really giving! If GG can fund his goofy Petra Academy and others like it, why can’t he actually GIVE a huge gift to St. Labre if he’s so concerned about Native people? Seems that GG belongs to the I’ve got mine branch of Christianity. What’s that called again? The prosperity gospel? Isn’t that special! God want’s the great white father to be rich. Geez, what a phony baloney.

              • TOUCHE! Good points, Bill……almost! But wait. Is Hillary running for guv in Montana too? I thought not.

                You see, Bill, it’s GG who pretends to be the Great White Farter to the Indian folks here in Montana. Only problem is that he is something of a joke. In fact, they have awarded him his native name! Yup. It’s kind of an honor………..almost.

                They call him Man With Mouse Parts! Yikes!

                Well, truth be told, they DID have an alternate name for GG. Man who helps sheep over fence! Or, as we say out I the outback of Montana, Dances with Sheep! Gets kinda lonely out on the prairie being a billionaire moron! Guy takes comfort where he can!

                Kinda fits, don’t it!

  • Gianforte doesn’t realize that the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT provides millions of dollars through Rural Utility Service to provide our vital rural telephone and electric co-ops ‘free’ money from the US ‘Gummin’t or ‘G’ do you deny that or would not want to expand federal support which has tremendously added to the quality of life for Rural Montana and America thanks to FDR’s Vision back in the 30’s with the REA, WPA, NRA, etc? With the RUS, BROADBAND would be impossible because your crony Korporate communications crooks don’t think it’s profitable to really invest in Rural ‘red votin’ Montana communities so public schools can excel despite the GOP….

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RT4_oJfqVj4 Gianforte’s success built on OUTSOURCING model! ‘G’ had NO trouble bringing in foreign workers on VISAs but ‘afraid’ of some refugees that only the US Government deals with….oh, and he helped FOREIGN Nations profit by OUTSOURCING US jobs with his computer wizardry, so let’s all get on his ‘Ark’ and take a ride, AWAY from the Capitol!

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