Tales from the Mark Side: The Conservative Voice in Manatee County

Conservative values win the day … except in Manatee County?

By Mark Young



It was a stunning Tuesday election night victory for Conservatives, but not in Manatee County.

There was a lot of wasted money that went into this Manatee County School District special election to continue an extra one mill tax. Some of which we’ve already discussed, such as $300,000 just to hold the special election and the six-figure salary to the lucky person who organized the special election.

Then there is the money spent on covering the county in vote yes signs and producing misleading social media ads.

I’m sure the district spent well over a half million dollars on this special election that could have been better spent, but again, what’s a half million dollars when it comes to taxpayer money?

The way this district throws money down the drain, the cost of this special election is just a drop in the bucket because they have you, their very own cash cow they believe they can come and milk anytime they want.

So why should they be fiscally responsible?

I won’t repeat a lot of what I’ve already argued except to say again that a school district of 50,000 students who can’t properly educate our children within a $1 billion budget shouldn’t be in the business of education.

I’m not surprised the district was successful given their misinformation campaign, but I am surprised by the margin of victory.

The district said the tax is all about the students and teachers, but failed to tell voters the truth about every aspect of why they had come crawling back to the taxpayer yet again.

Failing to tell the entire truth equates to a lie and this school district lied to you.

But what is done is done and now it’s time to look ahead. Now, more than ever, it is important to keep a wary eye on this district and monitor how it spends your money and educates our children.

I’ll give you just a couple of examples. I’m sure most parents aren’t aware that in the 2019-20 school year this district spent $40,000 on Panorama surveys.

Panorama is the company owned by Attorney General Merrick’s son-in-law and is the gateway to the Critical Race Theory curriculum, which shames young white children for being white.

There are many examples inside this shady district to watch, to include relatives of school board members previously teaching without a degree but getting paid at a PhD salary, removing the Pledge of Allegiance from elementary classrooms and the many, many scandals that have already been outlined.

If you really believed this special election was about the teachers and children, then all I ask is that you pay very close attention to what this district is up to in the coming months and years.

You voted for it, so now you own it. And if you own it, you must take some responsibility to ensure that it is cared for consistent with the intention that encouraged you to vote for it in the first place.

You don’t just get to give this district more of our money and turn a blind eye to the aftermath.

The district played a successful shell game and won your money. Watch carefully what they do with it. I can promise you one thing: this victory will only embolden this district in the future to come back for more.

And because their misinformation campaign was so successful, they will continue to mislead you about what they are up to next, as they have done so often in the past decade.

With that said, congratulations to Virginia voters who gave conservatives a clean sweep in what has become a blue state. As I write this, the New Jersey gubernatorial election is still too close to call, but, win or lose, it is another big statement that this country is fed up with the progressive movement.

And a big congratulations to voters in Minneapolis for shooting down the effort to defund and “reimagine” their police department.

That was another misinformation campaign, but thankfully did not succeed. I’ll get into the whole ridiculous defund the police movement at another time.

For now, stay vigilant patriots. We’ve won a couple of big battles, but lost an important one on the homefront. We have more work to do.


By Mark Young

Mark Young is a U.S. Army veteran and a seasoned journalist of 25 years. His writing and reporting has garnered dozens of state press association and press club awards in Florida, Nebraska and Wyoming for investigative reporting, opinion writing, in-depth reporting and more.

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