“Unmasking” Americans for Prosperity


Good day, Visitors.
Last fall, as you all know, my brother was recalled from his seat on the Jefferson County School board here in Colorado. Jeffco, as it is known here, is a declining school district of about 85,ooo students and a budget of over a billion dollars. John ran as a fiscal and social conservative, he and two other like minded colleagues were elected and proceeded to implement the responsible promises they made during their elections.

This earned the ire of the national teacher’s union, who pre-funded a recall of these candidates by pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into an effort that started within days of the election.

One of the union targets in this process was the organization called Americans for Prosperity.

AFP  and it’s sister organization Americans for Prosperity Foundation were founded by the wealthy industrialist Koch brothers and are part of their broad based political network.  And, if the Scott Kwasnys and Wendy McCords of the world are to be believed, both organizations are the spawn of the devil.  AFP and the Kochs are the root of all right wing political evil. AFP is populated by rich white folks bent on denying opportunity to struggling Americans. AFP and it’s ilk are completely out of touch, disinterested in the struggle of hard working Americans and especially Americans of difference and color.  AFP and it’s nefarious agenda must be opposed at all costs.

That’s quite a false narrative, Visitors.

During the recall debacle, AFP largely flew beneath my radar. I was too busy doing my part to try and halt Jeffco’s continuing decline, busy attempting to spread some truth in my corner of the union-corrupted world.

After I spoke at one of the Jeffco board meetings, I was leaving the openly antagonistic audience when a lean, good-looking young man approached me. He stuck out his hand- “Hi, I’m Darrin Levy. I’m one of the local field directors of Americans for Prosperity. Can I have a word?”

Darrin Levy

Our chief torchbearer- Darrin Levy

Darrin suggested that I join an informal class that the local AFP Foundation had organized, called the Grassroots Leadership Academy. My curiosity was piqued. I didn’t know a blessed thing about AFP or the AFP Foundation, but if the union minions despised them they must be worth checking out.

What followed was a remarkable six week class that was marvelous in it’s simplicity. The mission of AFP  Foundation is refreshing- here it is.
Americans for Prosperity Foundation is dedicated to educating and training citizens to be courageous advocates for the ideas, principles, and policies of a free society — knowing that leads to the greatest prosperity and wellbeing for all — especially the least fortunate. http://americansforprosperityfoundation.org/

You folks know me, this resonates. But what does it look like? My time is limited, I’m a single mother and small business owner. I can’t be wasting an evening a week on something unless it is truly worthwhile.

What followed was a terrific collection of foundational classes on the benefits of economic freedom. We heard from immigrants who really did view America as this golden prize worth striving for. We heard about the history of this remarkable experiment in this country. We heard and practiced concrete, practical ways to tell our own stories about the benefits of economic freedom.

Part way through the class I had a discussion with Darrin. I was enchanted with what I was seeing, and was interested in some of the more community-oriented benefits of AFP Foundation. Darrin told me about this wonderful, down-to-earth AFPF community program called “Bridge to Wellbeing”.  Bridge is a series of empowering programs that unapologetically helps local community members grab life by the reins, turn knowledge into power, and live more prosperous lives. Organized by AFP Foundation, these programs are taught by local experts and experts from around the country. Local participants attend at no cost to them.

Here are some examples, Visitors.

Passion to Profit-  Hear from local entrepreneurs about how they turned their passion into a thriving small business. (LOVED this one, Visitors.)

Flip The Switch– Ways to lower your energy bill.

Healthy Eating, Happy Family – How healthy eating can keep you out of your doctor’s office, and benefit your budget.

My favorite, of course:

Is My Child’s School Any Good? -We teach you how to check.

(Look at more of these cool things here http://americansforprosperityfoundation.org/bridge-to-wellbeing/)

Well, I was hooked. This is great material, with immediate benefits to the people and community I love.

In addition to participating in the Grassroots Leadership Academy Class, I also got to experienced a one day event sponsored by the Americans for Prosperity, the sister organization to AFP Foundation.  It was a super day! I mingled with over 100 other citizens who were also gaining activist skills. We gathered at the capitol and listened to legislators and other everyday Americans who were also concerned about eroding freedoms in Colorado.

The goal here was twofold- to continue our education as citizen activists. Secondly, to help our representatives hear about our “Six for Sixteen” agenda. (Six for Sixteen is AFP’s attempt to educate legislators about six very impactful issues for Coloradans. You can read about it here.  https://americansforprosperity.org/36932-2/

Among these six issues is one  that spoke to me. The idea of equalizing the playing field for charter schools is simply foundational to bettering education in Colorado. It’s astonishing to me that publicly funded charter schools do not get the same amount of per pupil funding that other government-run schools get. This is clearly a union sponsored stranglehold that must be broken. Ideally, funding would be attached to the student, and parents can make the best choice for their kids. Equalizing funding for charter schools is a good start.

Another issue on the ballot  for November is  a proposed  amendment to the Colorado Constitution known as ColoradoCare, or Amendment 69.

“ColoradoCare bares a lot of risks for our state. Our new campaign will help citizens everywhere get the facts on this proposal which, if passed, would force Coloradans into government run-healthcare, push Coloradans out of their current plans, double the state budget, hike taxes on Coloradans by at least $25 billion per year, impose a new 10 percent payroll tax, while risking European and Canadian-style rationing of care and long waiting lists for procedures.” http://amendment69co.com/

AFP is actively campaigning against this trainwreck, thank heaven. The Colorado Heath-OP collapsed last year (http://denver.cbslocal.com/2015/10/16/largest-health-insurer-on-colorado-exchange-collapses/) leaving local taxpayers on the hook for millions of dollars. Amendment 69 is an expansion of this disaster,  a looming juggernaut of ‘feel-good’ politics that simply won’t work.

AFP is me, an activist citizen concerned for Colorado. AFP is anyone who will not sit in our comfortable situations, content that we have ours. Join me if you like, to help stop this gradual erosion of our freedoms in this America, the most wonderful country on earth.

Much love,

Victoria

 

 

 

 

 

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3 thoughts on ““Unmasking” Americans for Prosperity

  1. Mmm. European rationiing of care.

    All healthcare systems ration care. Some ration it according to the cost of an insurance policy, some ration it according to pre-existing conditions, and some ration it according to need of all with a fair cost/benefit analysis such as the QALY, the additional years of life expected because of the treatment.

    The main problem of US health care, as I see it, is that not everyone has it, and people are ruined by conditions which are not covered. We don’t have full access to every treatment over here, either, costs and relative priorities must be set- but we don’t have people excluded because of poverty.

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    • Hello Claire! I am very interested in your comment. What is QALY? Regarding US health care, it is a common world myth that poor folks in the US do not get health care. Medicaid is government insurance program for persons of all ages whose income and resources are insufficient to pay for health care, and is one of several entitlement programs in the US that are bankrupting the country. It’s partner to Medicare, which is a federal health insurance program for the elderly. These programs, along with Social Security and some others, make up the vast bulk of government spending and are completely out of control. AFP seeks to limited the growth of entitlement programs like these in order to preserve some sense of economic freedom for our children.

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      • “Quality-adjusted life years”- a way of assessing objectively the relative costs of treatments for widely differing conditions.

        What about military spending? Should that be reduced at all?

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