Ignorance of what the politicians do is no excuse!

SMS Cezanne as a NegriHow many of us pay attention to the politician’s moves BEFORE they impact us.
Politico has a very important piece on the two new people appointed by the Dept of Education to oversee higher education.  Neither Ted Mitchell, nominee for  undersecretary of education,  nor the administration’s choice for assistant secretary for postsecondary education, Ericka Miller, has made higher education policy a career focus. Their agenda,  creating a federal system to rate colleges, then tying federal financial aid to those ratings is likely central to the future of higher education, especially at schools like this.
I see this as doubly challenging because of the perfect storm of the combination of right wing anti intellectualism, Gates foundation naiveté about how to fix higher ed, Republican efforts to down size government, and near religious belief that the future of higher education is Western Governors University and MOOCs.
One local worry for me is the plans of our ex Governor Gary Locke. Now that he is leaving his job as ambassador to China, I expect Gary to return to Seattle. What will he do?  Gary is more a techie than a pol and, even if he wanted to run, the two Senate seats are well filled.  I am a strong fan of Gary but he is one of the founders of Western Governors University.  I wonder whether he may not surface as Bill and Melissa’s spokesman for Gate’s expenditures on higher ed .. already near a half billion dollars!

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