Saying Goodbye to 2012 is Bittersweet

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I hope all of you are enjoying the holiday season with Chanukah, Christmas, and New Year’s celebrations. As we say goodbye to 2012 and hello to 2013, I offer you my final blog post of the year.

This year will go down in history as one of the most eventful years to date. Somehow President Obama – arguably one of the most corrupt and dangerous presidents in American history – clinched a second term in November. SCOTUS ruled  the individual mandate provision in Obamacare constitutional as a tax. Shockingly, but not surprisingly, Mitt Romney lost the election. Our side witnessed devastating losses in U.S. Senate contests, as well. Unemployment rose. The country cared more about birth control politics than preserving free enterprise this election year.  And the list goes on and on.

2012 was not a good year for America. Don’t kid yourselves if you think higher taxes, the implementation of Obamacare, and other policies ushered in by this administration are going to benefit us. They’ll incur more harm than good.

If you want to be encouraged for the battle ahead, check out Rebooting America founder Justen Charters in his viral “Six Trillion Dollar Man” music video for ChristinePAC. Share it with your friends and family.

Although there’s much to complain about 2012 and the consequences surrounding Obama’s re-election, I recognize that much good came out of this year. I graduated from UCSD with a B.A. in Political Science on the three-year track in June. Shortly afterward I moved from Southern California to Northern Virginia to intern at the Media Research Center’s CNSNews division.  I then got hired to work for the Leadership Institute as the Northeast Regional Field Coordinator, which has been a great experience thus far. Working with conservative students is fun, hard work, and great. I’m also grateful for wonderful co-workers, and find myself incredibly happy with the work I’m doing. I’m very blessed for gainful employment!

I was also graced with many opportunities in 2012. I was a youth speaker at several conferences, appeared on many radio shows, and continued to write for various conservative media outlets. I befriended and strengthened friendships with great people and fellow young conservative activists. I met many  people who I look up to including Michelle Malkin, Ken Cuccinelli, Mark Levin, Dana Loesch, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), and incoming U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), to name a few. I got to explore this country more and ventured to Texas, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Massachusetts for the first time. FreePAC Dallas was a blast, and my various trips to the Northeast to meet with students were equally worthwhile. I also co-founded another youth movement – Resistance 44- with my good friend Justen Charters and gauged young people with our conservative message.

2012 wouldn’t be complete if it weren’t for my family, friends, and fellow activists. Thank you for keeping my spirits up. I’m thankful for all of you and your continual support!

Despite impending tax hikes on all Americans come January 1st (thank you, President Obama and Congress), Americans should look forward to 2013.

-Pro-life? Attend 40th Annual March for Life event. The march will be taking place on January 25, 2013 in downtown Washington, D.C.

-President Obama and Democrats in the U.S. Senate are threatening to enforce gun bans. If this happens, apply for a concealed carry weapon (CCW) permit. Check your state government’s website on how to apply for CCW permits in your state. Additionally, sign-up to be a member of the NRA, Gun Owners of America, and/or National Association for Gun Rights.

-If you live here in the Commonwealth of Virginia, you have the opportunity to help pivot our state red and elect Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli as our next governor. Outside support is also appreciated. This is the first and most important electoral contest our side must win. (Visit Cuccinelli’s website, sign up to be a campaign volunteer, and donate money to his campaign.)

-Get involved with the National School Choice Week movement. Next year’s event takes place during the week of January 27, 2013 – February 2, 2013. This is how we outreach to people.

-All conservatives – especially young people – must get involved in Rebooting America. If you liked National Papa John’s Appreciation Day, you’ll like our future events.

-Start reading blogs featuring young conservatives on Counter Cultured, Young Cons, Values and Capitalism, and Acculturated.

-Defend Israel and support groups like CUFI, Zionist Organization of America, StandWithUs, and Young Jewish Conservatives.

-Defend free enterprise and make the moral case for it. Don’t support higher taxes.

-Champion family values and undermine the welfare society.

-And most of all breathe, exercise, eat healthy, travel the country, be frugal, surround yourself with good people, and don’t succumb to pressure. Take the occasional break from politics and your electronics to enjoy the world around you.

What will I be up to in 2013? Here’s what you can expect from me:

  • Speaking engagements: I’m scheduled to speak at a CUFI on Campus’ SALT conference panel on student activism in San Antonio, TX on January 3, 2013, which is followed by my participation in “The Cheated Generation” panel at Maryland Conservative Action Network’s Turning the Tides conference on January 12, 2013 in Annapolis, MD. More appearances are likely throughout the year.
  • Look out for an e-book featuring yours truly: I, along with other young conservatives, wrote a chapter for an e-book slated for release in March 2013.
  • National appearance: Can’t reveal this yet, but you’ll be seeing me on the national stage in mid-to-late January.
  • Blogging: I’ll continue blogging for CNSNews.com, Counter Cultured, Right Wing News, and make my debut on The Blaze. Some other opportunities might come up. I’ll keep you posted.
  • Work: Work is my first priority, so it’ll come first before outside activities. Nevertheless, I’ll be documenting my travels, crazy professors, and leftist abuses in the Northeast if anything comes up. If you’re a student in the Northeast looking to be active on campus, please contact me here.
  • Rebooting America: I’ll be more involved. You should join the movement too.
  • Twitter: Follow my musings and tweets @Gabby_Hoffman.

L’chaim and cheers to a happy, healthy, and productive 2013!

Stand for Greater Choice in Education: National School Choice Week – January 22-28, 2012

This January marks the 2nd Annual National School Choice Week. Organizations, educators, activists, politicians, and parents are coming together to stand up for better education. This week-long event will take place from January 22-28, 2012.

Given the corrupt nature of teachers unions and the lack of attention allotted to student needs in schools, it is imperative to encourage more school choice legislation and programs all across the nation.

Below is a promo ad for the event.

Here is more information from NSCW’s Andrew Campanella :

Here are three things you can do right now to help make National School Choice Week 2012 a huge success:

  1. Find an event near you to attend or support. Check our events listing daily – new events are being posted all the time.
  2. Better yet, plan your own event! We have all types of resources on our website to help you get started including free documentaries to host a screening and discussion as well as an Event-in-a-Box to help brand your event.
  3. Spread the word about National School Choice Week to your family, friends co-workers and neighbors by forwarding this email or writing your own and sharing a link to our website: www.SchoolChoiceWeek.com.

I am one of approximately 30 student bloggers for National School Choice Week. You can find some of my pieces on their blog:

September 2011: Missing link. Will recover.

October 2011: “Dr. Ben Chavis Boasts Unorthadox Leadership that Delivers Education Results”

November 2011:  “Milton Friedman and School Choice: Limited Government Principles Foster Quality Education

To learn how to get involved, visit their website and find an event near you.

Milton Friedman and School Choice: Limited Government Principles Foster Quality Education

Capitalism and Freedom

Image via Wikipedia

Cross-posted from National School Choice Week blog on November 22, 2011:

In his book Capitalism and Freedom, Milton Friedman writes, “Not all schooling is education nor all education, schooling. The proper subject of concern is education. The activities of government are mostly limited to schooling.” (86).

At a time when big government policies are all-pervading and equally treacherous, education similarly suffers at the hands of bureaucrats and union bosses. Copious amounts of dollars are funding school administrations and teacher pay, while student needs are neglected and tossed aside.  For example, “Teachers Unions Gone Wild”—an undercover video by James O’Keefe that exposed the New Jersey Education Association teachers’ union in Fall 2010—captured problems inset with powerful and equally egregious teachers unions. When an oversized bureaucracy rules, quality education ceases to exist.

In a time where education reform is desired and necessary, it is imperative to note that big government policies are counterintuitive to a world-class education system.

Milton Friedman encouraged a localized approach to education. In particular, he emphasized parental control over school placement. Additionally, he best explained the case for school choice with respect to limited government through vouchers:

“Governments could require a minimum level of schooling financed by giving parents vouchers redeemable for a specified maximum sum per child per year if spent on ‘approved’ educational resources. Parents would then be free to spend this sum and any additional sum they themselves provided on purchasing educational services from an ‘approved’ institution of their own choice. The educational services could be rendered by private enterprises operated for, or by non-profit institutions,” (Friedman 89).

Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice continues the legacy wrought by Milton Friedman and his wife Rose Friedman:

“In 1996, they established the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation to advance a system of k-12 education where every parent, regardless of race, origin or family income, was free to choose a learning environment that was best for their child. As they said, “This foundation is the culmination of what has been one of our main interests for more than four decades: improvement in the quality of the education available to children of all income and social classes in this nation, whether that education is provided in government or private schools or at home.”

“Today, while our name is different (The Foundation for Educational Choice) our mission remains the same.

“Our Foundation is dedicated to building upon our founders’ theories and vision, clarifying their meaning to the public and amplifying the national call for true education reform through school choice.” – (Taken from the Foundation’s website)

As a result, this is the best time to heed Milton Friedman’s words about limited government in education.

California Students Could Succeed Again With School Choice

Cross-posted from the NSCW Blog

When people think of California, they envision a place marked by idyllic weather, insurmountable wealth, friendly people, and world- famous attractions. It is undeniable that the Golden State has led the way for job growth, endless opportunities, and innovation. California is quite enviable – why else do people flock here? Nevertheless, one area was left untouched in this period of prosperity: education.

A state greatly overridden by teachers unions and virtually nonexistent school choice laws, California is in great need of education reform. Heritage Foundation reports that California is reluctant to embrace private school choice options, although it is more hospitable to public school choice options. Nearly 351,000 students are enrolled in the state’s 941 public charter schools, signaling the minimal albeit important presence of school choice here.

Compared to other states, California ranks near the bottom in quality of education. In 2009, it was ranked 48 of 50 in terms of sending graduating seniors to four-year colleges. Additionally, teachers unions dictate the course of education and remain hostile to outsiders like school choice proponents. As a result, school choice policies hardly penetrate into the state.

Continue reading at the NSCW blog

Student Bloggers Desired for National School Choice Week (January 22-28, 2012)

Along with the looming debt crisis, destruction of international relations, and equally deliberate attack on American morals and values, education is a hot button issue that commands equal attention.  Members of our generation must participate in the education debate. Americans depend on our input.

As one who put up with a public school education (then Capistrano Unified School District 1996-2009, now UCSD 2009-2012) mired by teacher protests and scandals  involving corrupt district officials, I have concluded that school choice is the only option that ensures education reform. Nevertheless, the fight doesn’t stop there: we must defeat and undermine powerful, yet equally selfish, teachers unions.

If school choice concerns you or if you feel inclined to tackle this issue, be sure to sign up to blog about school choice from January 22-28, 2012. Check out this opportunity below and be sure to sign up by July 1, 2011:

National School Choice Week is looking for college student bloggers to write about such topics as personal experience, particular school choice options in their community, interviews with school choice leaders, etc. Each student will be asked to blog a minimum of once per month beginning in September through National School Choice Week, which is January 22-28, 2012. A retreat will be held in mid to late August to familiarize the students with the coalition leaders and the variety of issues surrounding School Choice Week.

Additionally, the students will be invited to attend one of National School Choice Week’s planning meetings closer to the week, where they can get to know the broader group, as well as report on their activities. During National School Choice Week, students will be encouraged to attend an event and blog about it. If you are interested in helping NSCW become a great success in 2012, please contact Alisha Meneely at alisha@schoolchoiceweek.com by July 1, 2011.

Senator DeMint (R-SC) Makes Case for School Choice

Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) is vouching for school choice. This alternative is becoming the more viable, effective option to afford better educational opportunities to students.

School choice empowers parents, facilitates healthy competition, and produces better-prepared students for life.

Parents need to be involved in their child’s education. Rather than subduing children to the influence and downright indoctrination that goes on in public schools, parents should look to the best schools that are affordable and productive.

“A child is not the creature of the state.”

Watch the video below featuring TEA Party advocate and conservative lion, Jim DeMint: