DANGERS AND DISTRACTIONS PART 1: EDUCATION VOUCHERS
ISSUES: DISTRACTIONS, AND DANGER
Part 1 : The Vouchers Movement
Recently the great news aggregator of our day, Citizens Free Press, seemed to be puzzled about a story out of Texas. Rural Texas legislators were joining the teacher union-addled Dems in scuttling Governor Abbott’s plan to divert education tax dollars into a voucher program. The article CFP linked to was from a less-than-honest corporate media out that omitted certain facts. The story sounded like there was a great rebellion going on in rural Texas supporting the teacher’s unions and fighting the GOP governor. That is not what is happening in Texas, or in state houses all over America. Yes, vouchers have been touted in some education reform circles as the panacea for parents struggling with the poor performance and increased indoctrination found in public schools. What is happening? An increasing number of state legislators across the land are seeing vouchers for the trap that they are.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is an enthusiastic proponent of school vouchers. Many conservative members of the Texas legislature are not so excited.
At first glance, vouchers might seem like a great idea. Give parents back some of their tax money and let them enroll their kids into private schools with higher standards and a better learning environment. What could be wrong with that? In fact, three big things are wrong with vouchers.
First, it trains fire away from the social engineers and education bureaucrats that are destroying the proper vision of America in the minds of all public school children, including those whose parents who will not pull them out whether they have access to voucher money or not. Angry parents are taking over school boards all over the country. That’s what should happen!
Second, injecting tax money into private schools automatically makes them more subject to government regulation than they are now. The Supreme Court has ruled more than once that a dollar of tax money in any enterprise gives government regulatory control. In addition, the whole Marxist-inspired woke agenda is a top priority of teacher and administrator organizations. It is being deployed in various guises and degrees by teachers in every state who have too often been willing to be deceptive if they need to be. Private schools taking government money won’t be shielded from their political firepower. Governor Spencer Cox took $70,000 from a nationally-affiliated teacher’s union in 2020.
Here Obama’s Sec. of Labor and future DNC chair Thomas Perez addresses the Board of the nation’s largest teacher’s union, the National Education Association (NEA). The group is a major purveyor of the entire woke agenda. They reward their friends with large campaign donations. Their Utah affiliate provided $70,000 to the 2020 political campaign of Spencer Cox.
And, our social engineering overlords have more coming. A recent article in the New American (https://thenewamerican.com/print/vouchers-school-choice-trap/) reveals the UN’s Global Education Monitor report for 2022 recommends “integration of private subsidized schools into the monitoring and evaluation framework in place for the public sector.” This has already happened in Sweden, Australia, and South Africa with disastrous consequences.
The UNESCO flag. In a recent report, the UN agency calls for using tax funds that go to private schools as leverage to control their curriculum.
A third major problem with vouchers is what will happen if billions of tax dollars suddenly flow into the private school market. If you inflate the amount of dollars in the whole economy one side effect will be across-the-board price “inflation.” If you orchestrate a drastic increase in dollars to the private education market specifically you will get inflated prices in that sector in the form of higher tuition. We’re talking simple supply and demand. At the same time, private schools that refuse to conform to regulations needed to receive voucher funds will suffer a drastic competitive disadvantage. Those schools that survive will likely react with their own tuition increases. Truly independent schools will then be an option only for wealthy parents who don’t need vouchers.
Of course, our allegedly conservative leadership in this state is all about vouchers. XXXXXXXX
What about charter schools? They use public funds to give the standard-issue public school a bit of competition. That sound’s good. They must comply with a load of public school requirements, which is not OK. They might benefit some families but they are not “the answer.” They still compete against truly independent alternatives. Truly better choices exist or can still be developed privately, like home-school co-ops. We must keep the government away from our private schools at all costs.
When the Tea Party fire was white hot after the 2008 election, corporate conservatives sent in well-paid organizers to “take charge” and re-direct a legitimate and explosive grassroots movement. The term coined for that activity was astroturfing. In the education area activists were steered toward establishment projects like vouchers, and away from seizing the real power that is rightfully theirs’ to change public schools.
Fast forward to current headlines. No one has sicced the FBI on the vouchers movement. But Moms for Liberty have been targets. Why? Here’s a clue: they helped elect new school board members in 271 districts across America. Our establishment fears outraged parents organized to force real changes in policy, curriculum, and changes in personnel. This fight really matters, whether your children are in public schools or not.
In the Tea Party era slick organizers financed by the Koch brothers and others steered activists away from issues like immigration control, an end to internationalist trade deals and endless wars, and the brick-by-brick dismantling of the Bill of Rights in the name of convenience and security. Today, old distractions are being recycled by some of the same pitchmen who sought to derail the Tea Party years ago. Hence, the return of the “balanced budget amendment” and “congressional term limits.” In Part II of this series we’ll be looking at these two non-solutions that are luring some activists away from more productive activity and toward a real danger, the movement seeking to convene a new constitutional convention (the Con-Con). Stay tuned.