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Blog of Mass Destruction

Exploiting Children For Profit

By The Reverend Published: June 12, 2012

Certain dogs, if given unlimited access to fresh meat, will eat until they die.

That's an apt metaphor for conservative efforts to privatize everything that isn't nailed down in this country.

I have often been mocked by conservatives when I suggest that one of the GOP's goals is to end the K-12 public school system as we have known it in the 50 states, and replace it with a for-profit, free market substitute.

Conservatives, bearing little proof, assert that for-profit ventures in a capitalistic economy always produce goods and/or services more efficiently than government. The Reverend has never accepted the premise that by adding "profit" to a good or service leads to higher efficiency, lower prices for consumers and/or a better product/service.

However, I DO understand why the GOP, and to a certain extent, Democrats, never stop pushing to privatize, or more accurately, profitize, every single government tax revenue stream found flowing in the 50 states. Whether Social Security or Medicare, K-12 public schools or college student loans, public transportation or conventional pension programs.......the conservative perspective is always the same: place the tax revenue stream that currently pays for those services in the hands of profit seekers.

When it comes to K-12 public schools, Republicans are shooting for a twofer. Not only do conservative players want to get their hands on that revenue stream for profit skimming purposes, but the evil Democrat-supporting teachers unions can be destroyed at the same time. Here's one of the latest examples.....here's the governor who, unfortunately for him, gave the response to one of Obama's SOTU addresses...and came across like a Bollywood version of Mr. Rogers....

Louisiana, under Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal, will be the first state—but probably not the last—to implement a bold new plan to privatize education.

Under the new system, parents can apply for vouchers to enroll their children at private schools, even small church-run facilities. Only lower and middle-class students will initially be eligible for the vouchers to cover tuition in more than 120 Louisiana private schools beginning this fall. But next year the program will add a mini-voucher that students of all incomes can use to take classes not offered in the public schools. For each voucher accepted, the state will deduct funding from the student’s local public school.

Officials expect the program will save the state money in the long run, but no fiscal analysis has been done.

My, my..."no fiscal analysis has been done." Must be because of all that "fiscal responsibility" conservatives go on and on about.

Jindal is simply doing in his state what Republican Governor, and ex-Bushie, Mitch Daniels has already done in Indiana.

Here are some interesting details: First, the price tag for voucherizing and privatizing all of Louisiana's public schools has not been estimated. I wonder why that is? In spite of there being no cost analysis, advocates assert that the "private sector can educate children more cheaply than public schools." I take it that it's a totally faith-based plan.

In Bollywood Bob's privatization plan, starting next year, ALL families of students will be eligible for vouchers that, theoretically, can be used to send children to any school the parents choose. The monetary limit of the voucher will be approximately $8,800 per year. But get this....

Small private schools often charge as little as $3,000 to $5,000 a year.

Yet at some private schools with low tuition, administrators contacted by Reuters said they would also ask the state to cover additional, unspecified fees, which would bring the cost to taxpayers close to the $8,800 cap. The law requires the state to cover both tuition and fees.

See where this is headed? The Wal-Mart Quasi-Public School System, symbol WMQPSS on the New York stock exchange...that's where.

Perhaps Bollywood Bobby will get Wall Street sharks to float an IPO so that the "profit" from Wal-Mart Schools Inc. can be rightly distributed to rich shareholders....as god intended. It's easy to see what will happen if this public school privatization scheme becomes reality in the states.

If profits are to be continually made from K-12 school systems, which is the intent of Jindal's plan.....there are only two ways that can happen. Either the costs to the privatizers must go down.....which means lower teacher salaries and little-to-no benefits, which means a lesser-quality education product.....or the privatizers will continually demand more money from the state to cover, you know, "unspecified fees." Or, more likely.....both, simultaneously.

National studies of existing charter schools, and the like, have demonstrated that they do not provide a superior education for children over our public schools......yet, Jindal and other Red State governors are rushing to expand vouchers and privatize the public school system as rapidly as possible....always telling critics that the plan is all about providing the best education for the children.

It's a lie.

Privatizing, voucherizing the public school system is for the purpose of using our K-12 students as pawns for profit. Privatizing is for the purpose of creating a "profit seekers" paradise. One in which all state tax revenues, revenues designated for the education of our students, passes through their money-skimming hands so they can take some for themselves while systematically degrading K-12 education in order to continually make "profits" in the years to come.

All things exist so that the rich few can get richer.....even our children.

 

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