This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
If you can't find any interesting comedies in the movie listings and the circus isn't in town, you might want to attend a Davis School Board meeting. And bring popcorn.
The Nov. 5 "Board Briefs" newsletter distributed by the Davis School District contained a story about the district's new evaluations systems for educators and other employees.
The evaluation includes self-assessment and goal-setting by the teacher, observations from the principal and surveys from students and parents.
When a district official explained to the school board that the parent surveys were available in both English and Spanish, board member Peter Cannon, a self-described tea party devotee, asked if the nation had become bilingual and if not, why a Spanish translation was offered.
The official said it was an effort to reach out to a growing population of parents who do not speak English so their voices could be heard as well.
"Their information will count the day that they learn the language," Cannon replied.
I've written about this guy before. He is a champion of Glenn Beck's 9-12 Project, which aims to return the U.S. to the founding fathers' principles and values. Once, when the board voted for a tax hike to address education needs, his recorded vote was "The Farmington Tea Party votes no."
He also suggested during a public school board meeting that students qualifying for a free or reduced-priced school lunch should get a peanut butter sandwich instead of the hot lunch other students receive and be forced to stand in a separate lunch line. He's funnier than Snidely Whiplash.
But he also, apparently, is representative of his area. When former Rep. Julie Fisher resigned in 2011 to become director of the Utah Department of Community and Culture, Republican delegates went eight rounds of voting before finally electing Stewart Barlow to replace Fisher. He beat Cannon, the peanut-butter sandwich guy, by one vote.
Another tea party gem • Our funding woes are over. We can give public education all the money it needs. We can build roads galore, we can relocate the prison and fund any kind of Medicaid expansion.
We don't have to raise taxes. We don't have to bond.
Every Utah House member got an email recently from Jim Barrus, CEO of Constitutional Concepts Foundation of National Gold Inc., a Utah corporation.
Barrus not to be confused with Rep. Roger Barrus, R-Centerville, who by all accounts is a pretty normal guy told the legislators his company has more than $3 trillion in unmined precious metal reserves that it will pledge to Utah under a couple of simple conditions.
First, he wants his company's National Gold Band & Trust to be recognized by Utah (after all, he says, his firm has been contacted by Nicaragua to fund up to $40 billion of a canal project).
And he wants the state to change school curriculum so true concepts of our Constitution and history are taught (I'm not sure on this, but I would bet he's an anti-Common Core guy).
His ideas on true concepts? Well, his Web page defines democracy as a system in which: the majority will make slaves of the minority; power-hungry men and women will subvert the government for their own benefit; God is outlawed, morality is destroyed and God's laws are totally disregarded.
(Let's get those new Barrus-approved textbooks on the printing presses right away. We need the money.)
He defines a republic as a system in which people are free to enjoy their life, liberty and pursuit of happiness and the government has no lawful power to violate, or even infringe upon, peoples' rights.
So there you go. Problem solved. We're a republic.
He also has written on the Tea Party Express website that liberals started World War I so we would eventually have the League of Nations. When the U.S. didn't join, liberals started World War II so we could get the United Nations (except in the "No U.N." zones in Washington and Kane counties).
Curiously, nobody in the House has responded to Barrus' offer. But they had better watch out. Under our nominating process, he easily could become a delegate.