There’s a good editorial in today’s NY Post. I say good because it makes fun of my dad. I love doing that. His name is Billy Easton, and he’s the Executive Director of the Alliance for Quality Education, a NYS education advocacy group. Usually, when I make fun of him, I call him an old man. NY Post takes a different tack. Check it out:
Thus was Easton’s “organization” — it’s actually an Albany mail drop — listed among similar “groups” delivering Valentine’s Day “Don’t Break Our Hearts” cards to Albany legislators last week demanding that they “reject Gov. Cuomo’s $1.5 billion in school cuts.”
Brilliant! By wrapping the word organization in quotation marks, the author more or less proves that my dad’s organization is not an organization. It’s not a group either, that word also quotation-ed out. Thus my dad must be something corporate and evil. You know, like old man Rupert Murdoch, proprietor of the NY Post. The author finishes the passage by quoting the demand of my dad’s group: “reject Gov. Cuomo’s $1.5 billion in school cuts.” This time, the quotation marks do double the work: their traditional job–quoting–and their supercharged, smackdown job–mocking whatever the author places between them. Instead of presenting the merits of his sides’ argument, the author just wraps quotation marks around my father’s argument. Much easier! And it more-or-less proves that we should gut the already struggling NY education system. Good stuff.
The article gets funnier. Refuting the AQE’s claim to advocate for “fair funding and smarter spending” (quotes!), our author spits this gem: “Spending on teachers, that is.” Gasp! As everyone knows, anything italicized is shocking and evil. Who spends on teachers?! Teachers are fat cats trying to ruin America. That’s why they’re italicized. Everyone knows that.
Let’s wrap this thing up:
[Easton] is ubiquitous in Albany and worked the floor at Cuomo’s budget presentation like a carnival shill.
Albany being Albany, that may not be illegal. Still, the Commission on Public Integrity would do well to take a long, hard look at Billy Easton and his — dare we say it — “group.”
In other words: Albany being the capital of a democracy, citizen advocacy groups pushing elected officials to adopt public interest policies may not be illegal. Pretty outstanding that it’s not, what? Carnival shill!
Maybe while the Commission on Public Integrity is looking hard and long at my dad, they’ll also check out the writer of this editorial and his — dare I say it — “newspaper.”