More on public schools and competition

From a comment by "Brock" to this post below, and my response intermixed:

John & Jon - we, as a society, have a VERY great interest in a well educated population. I can't think of all the great ideas that move society forward by myself. I need help, and there's no telling where the next Bill Gates will come from. I think this competition is great, but Jonathen's contention that it's a shell game of stolen money is completely off.

I'm not sure about "we, as a society" having a great interest in anything; I don't presume to speak for everyone else. Speaking for myself though, I do desire a well educated population, and this is the very reason public schools must be abolished. Public schools mass produce uneducation.

Choice is a great thing. I like the choices I have in other areas of life - food, cars, real estate, clothing. So why not let parents have a similar choice in the type of education their child gets?

Right now, money is take from them without their permission for a type of school that you desire, whether they desire that same type of school or not. This would be akin to you going around taking $5 from all your friends by force and buying a Happy Meal for all of them for lunch. If some of them would rather eat a Caesar Salad or a slice of pizza, they're out of luck. If they demand their money back so they can make their own choices based on their own unique preferences, they get reprimanded for trying to take the "public's money". You reply, "'We as a society' have a great interest in a well-fed populace. Stop saying we stole your money."

Education is THE single greatest investment any nation can make. Education for all, doubly so. Without that you're cutting your potential for future economic growth - and wasting enormous amounts of human capital.

Believe it or not, individuals left to their own devices can make the most appropriate choices for themselves for their educational needs. A one-size-fits-all solution is not the answer. An opposition to public schooling does not universally come with an opposition to all learning. I, like you, do not want to waste human 'capital'; that is precisely why I oppose public schooling. The amount of human 'capital' being wasted daily in public schools is tragic.

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Ted Kennedy (or rather his

Ted Kennedy (or rather his staff, I can't imagine him actually doing the research) found that Massachussets had a higher literacy rate prior to the introduction of public schools and compulsory education.

Education is clearly a

Education is clearly a private good, the overwhelming share of the benefit of an education goes to the individual receiving it. Individuals strongly tend to pursue their own benefit. Private funding of all education would produce a better educated population.

People obviously need food more then they need a public education, so why doesn't Brock think that's a more important investment for the nation? Imagine the nightmare that would follow the socialization of the production and distribution of food.

Texas is currently going

Texas is currently going nuts about how to fund public education in the face of unyielding resistence to current levels of property taxes, which are what fund the local districts now.

We have a system dubbed "Robin Hood" that siphons this tax money from property-rich school districts to property-poor school districts, but the system is not working and the consensus is that it must be replaced with something else.

Some unthinkers want to impose a statewide income tax. Some want to change the Texas Constitution to allow local governments to tax property and sales differently.

Meanwhile, I'm sitting on the sidelines going nuts. The one thing people in this country overwhelmingly hold to be axiomatic is the public funding, regulation, or ownership of educational institutions. It is, in my opinon, as big a problem as the Drug War.