Just got back from the school vouchers discussion (second item), and am rather dissatisfied. First off, there's the idiot who insisted that them evil conservatives are selling snake oil to poor black people by getting them hooked on school vouchers. That was just the icing on the cake, though; my problems with the arguments began before that.
One of the anti-voucher panelists insisted that a voucher program is like giving blacks in the 50's vouchers to eat lunch at Woolworth's -- of little value, because blacks wouldn't be served there anyway. Her argument was that there is nowhere to use the vouchers. She apparently doesn't think that schools would not come into being, or at least that it would take too long for the schools to be formed if a school voucher program began. She explicitly excepted Catholic schools, though. Another panelist insisted that the government is "pooring money into the coffers" of these religions, thus violating the establishment clause. Hang on here, if these religions are taking so much money from the government, "into their coffers", as it were, then why aren't competitors springing up to challenge them for the right to that dough? It's not as if the Supreme Court insisted that voucher money go to religious schools.
The other thing that annoyed me is that no one had the nerve to
even mention, let alone discuss, the vested interest of the teacher's
unions in fighting school vouchers. I would not be a bit surprised if
the anti-voucher panelists turn out to have financial connections to the
unions. If not financial, then at least social; the lady who isn't a law
professor here is a professor at the IU school of education, and
therefore has a vested interest in teacher certification and such
Boy, talk about a generic blog. What can I say, I'm not a design guy. My brother says he'll design a template for me if I want...
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Marvelous ways to waste an afternoon