As we have observed and discussed in this paper, Gov. Matt “Bell Curve” Bevin is a mini-Trump in a number of ways. So it came as no surprise to discover that Bevin also has a resistance within his administration. A group of more secular, sane, moderate conservatives who work behind the scenes to prevent Gov. Bell Curve from acting on his most preposterous, dangerous instincts. Perhaps inspired by the anonymous op-ed published by the New York Times detailing the dangers of a morally-bankrupt president, LEO is also taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous op-ed, this one from a senior official within the Bevin administration.
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I am part of the resistance inside the Bevin administration.
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is facing a challenge unlike any in its history. For a state with a rich history of corruption and insider-political dealings — which continues today — it’s the misguided leadership of a politically ambitious, religious zealot on a personal crusade for power that poses the greatest, most unusual threat to the future of Kentucky.
To be clear, there have been tremendous, conservative accomplishments during Bevin’s tenure, and once he abandons his office in pursuit of higher office, Kentucky Republicans should be poised to continue the pursuit of its conservative agenda: stripping away regulations that protect the environment in order to reward and benefit coal, power and chemical companies; undermining unions, which frees companies to treat their employees what they’re worth in the market… not much; repealing Medicaid expansion, thereby making those tens of thousands of freeloaders work for their health and dental care; and, finally driving a stake through public education, expanding private and for-profit charter schools and ending desegregation.
I could go on, but big-donor conservatives — such as Charles and David Koch — should have faith that the anti-worker, anti-teacher, anti-government, anti-welfare movement is strong in Kentucky.
But all of these accomplishments have been made much more difficult because of Bevin’s impetuous, adversarial and petty behavior. The dilemma — which he does not grasp because his ego eclipses common sense and self-reflection — is that many of the senior officials are working diligently from within his administration to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
The fact is that Bevin has surrounded himself largely with equally religiously zealous, anti-working-class sycophants, which only feeds his most wretched instincts. When he publicly attacks teachers, judges, the media and so on, he doesn’t receive quality, critical feedback. Instead, he receives only praise.
He doesn’t believe his constituents, and even elected officials and the media are worthy of his attention. They’re “not smart enough,” he says, to understand “how brilliant” he is.
The public was (rightfully) outraged at Bevin’s accusation that kids would be sexually molested because teachers went on strike. Do you really think that was the worst thing he’s said about teachers… when there were no cameras around?
Oh, and if you thought it was racially insensitive of Bevin to suggest that black boys and girls don’t play chess, you should’ve heard him joking after about playing Monopoly.
Then, there are his actual policy ambitions — all reflecting his penchant for narcissistic autocrats. If it were not for the work of the steady state, Kentucky judges who have been elected by voters would have already been replaced by Bevin appointees. The steady state protected Kentucky taxpayers from investing in even more aluminum plants, as well as a bell manufacturing company in Connecticut and even some real estate in the prestigious Anchorage neighborhood.
It’s the work of the steady state that stopped Bevin from extending a no-bid contract to a member of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for a Call-to-Ministry Czar. Or, creating a new agency: Intervention for Women Ready for Family Planning.
You think the Ark Park is an embarrassment? How would you have felt about a “What God Says About Your Gay Thoughts Experience”?
Honestly, you should be thankful “In God We Trust” is the only thing proposed for Kentucky public schools.
It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room. We fully recognize what is happening. But stay vigilant and keep resisting, because I am about as real as the voices in Bevin’s head.