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Friday, May 28, 2010

That damned Problem

What's Mallard raving about today?

Schools, Math.

Mallard has quite a lot of nerve criticizing anyone's math.

His logic is also flawless: The Education system is bad...therefore spending more money to fix it won't work.


Iron Dragon said...

Ok, for the sake of argument what exactly do we do that won't cost money? New programs cost time and money for training, possibly new text books and things to help students follow it. Smaller class sizes either mean moving students or more teachers, neither of which would be free. Vouchers would also be expensive, tutoring or after school programs would also eat into funding. It's possible they could cut classes to make up the funding but what gets cut? Foreign languanges are necessary for competition in a global market, math and the hard sciences are pretty much a necessity. Gym is arguable but given the rising level of obesity it probably should remain too, if only to keep things from worsening.

English is needed to keep ideas clear and concise, to allow for communication of thoughts. Computer classes are fairly obviously needed. If we cut art and music classes we risk a lot of potential talent withering but I suppose that would be where Tinsely would argue we need to take the axe. History might have to go too, at least if we want to focus on a purely lean educational budget.

And, cutting the programs might not save any money, it might mean it can be used other places but on what? Also, besides all of this education needs to be studied to be improved which also costs money.

I have this weird feeling that Tinsley never wonders what happens when programs are cut or when funding drops out.

Ducky is Right said...

Because the obvious solution is to cut funding. That'll teach them all a lesson!

Ducky clearly falls into the libertarian, "I have no concept for how things work, but everyone should listen to me, anyways."

Rootbeer said...

A better question might be why the child has fallen asleep while sitting upright at his desk. Does he suffer from narcolepsy?

Kip W said...

Silly professional educators! Everybody knows it's alcohol you throw at problems. First it makes them humorous, then hilarious, then fuzzy, then they fade to black. Problem solved!

Kip W said...

ps to Ducky is Right: The solution is always to cut taxes. Even when it involves shooting at brown people in other countries (or here), because we should cut taxes even as we raise spending.

It's so convenient to have an honest and heartfelt moral ideology that solves every problem by cutting taxes. Ah, good old leeches! Is there nothing you can't fix?

wv: gorein -- what the Supreme Court Five wouldn't let.

rewinn said...

Econ 101: you get what you pay for.

Teacher pay is lousy, the workload is high and the funding system stinks. Many of the regular shoppers at the thrift store where I volunteer are teachers buying schools supplies (e.g. reading materials) with their own money!

Schools put up in the days of high taxation are 50 years old and need replacing. Most families have no stay-at-home mom, so the free labor they used to provide schools has to be compensated for somehow.

All this costs money. Reality is a bitch!

You get what you pay for. "Mallard Fillmore" is free.

Frank Stone said...

Oops -- you screwed up again, Brucie: You wrote "school system" when you meant "public school system". Or were you trying to trick us into thinking you don't reserve special contempt for public schools?

I'm reminded of an episode of the tv series Boston Public in which the school was faced with the prospect of laying off teachers during a budget crisis. The principal finally hit upon the solution of eliminating varsity sports from the school budget, basically telling the jocks' parents that if the football program was so important to them, they could pay for it themselves, because keeping the teachers was a greater priority. I wonder how long it would take Brucie to start shrieking like a deranged bag lady if this solution were being implemented in real life?

Steve-O said...

Conservative ideology 101:

1. Back up dump-truck full of money at Pentagon door and dump.

2. Ship pallets of $100 bills to Iraq never to be seen again.

3. Make sure rich people are in the lowest tax bracket.

Say "Hell No" to funding for pre-school, education, unemployment, pre-natal health, or basically anything that benefits anyone who makes less than $150,000 a year.

Marion Delgado said...

Would throwing a million dollars at Republicans like Tinsley who want to end public schools and convert to fundamentalist church and home schooling and avaricious charter schools fix the problem?

If it were all in pennies, I mean.

And from a great height.

Bill the Splut said...

"Our education system is substandard! Let's improve it by spending no money on it!"

Does he even read these things when he's done?

exanonymous said...

Naturally, the private market would take care of everything.
By paying teachers more money for starters.

Apparently the magic happens when you allow administrators to pull in a bigger profit from something children have a right to.

Not all public school systems are that bad anyways, which defeats the whole idea that it is the "public" part of the system that is wrong. In areas where there is more money, access to better teachers (by being a university town for example) and a general population that has no desire to introduce religion into the classroom and politics into the textbooks, and community involvement, the students thrive.

Faster, Harder, More Challenging GeoX said...

The principal finally hit upon the solution of eliminating varsity sports from the school budget, basically telling the jocks' parents that if the football program was so important to them, they could pay for it themselves, because keeping the teachers was a greater priority.

Boy, THERE'S a lovely pipe dream.

Anonymous said...

If you are not going to support these reductions, then tell the people where you are going to raise their taxes, because there will be no choice

Iron Dragon said...

Actually Anonymous that did happen recently where I am. Local districts aren't getting the money they were supposed to from the state due to financial issues. We had people coming in, cops, firefighters, owners of local businesses and parents all saying that they would take a 30% tax increase if it meant that we could keep the teachers and not have to gut the schools. The council was unwilling because they feared political backlash for doing so, so we've had a rather ugly fight between the union, the schoolboard, and the local politicians.

But again, I have no problem with increased taxes funding schools. What I have issue with is people trying to put religion into the classroom, or the idea that money spent on weaponry and foreign wars just rains from the sky while money spent to maintain infrastructure, educate the next generation to allow them to take the reigns as competently as possible, or provide aid to the less fortunate, well that's different and we have to keep putting cuts in.

Kaitlyn said...

At the rich high school my mom works at, they booted teachers for failing kids when they clearly were failing. They boasted a 98% graduation rate this year. Bullshit.

The poor high school I went to has a new principal who will fail students, even if it hurts the numbers (and the amount of money the school gets) so he can set up programs to help the kids learn.

The state of education in this country is disgusting.

We need more funding, and there should not be poor schools and rich schools - decent money for schools won't guarantee "good schools"*, but it will help level the playing field somewhat.

*conservatives HATE school because it's so hard to measure success. Except with asinine tests that EVERYONE hates - the teachers do teach to the test, they have to.

Ducky is RIght said...

It'd be a very simple task to add a small tax on gas; or a modest sales tax increase, either in percentage or a flat amount, say $.10 per sale.
Any variety of ways that will have a minimal impact in the daily financial lives of the individual citizen, but will have the cumulative effect by volume of at least tiding over the budget until things improve.
Gee, that was hard.

Tell you what, Anny: let's go ahead and slash the education budgets and lower taxes. You all can use that money to buy Learn Chinese lessons. Because you will need it.

rewinn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rewinn said...

If Anonymous Coward had done his 40-80 hours of research watching the news instead of drinking at a bar, he'd know that even Arizona voters raised their own taxes just now.

And, as others noted, it's not a simple question of "cut costs or raise taxes". We could reduce our aircraft carrier groups to merely twice as many as the rest of the world combined, and save a lot there. We could reduce our war budget to merely 1/3 of all world military spending and save a HUGE bundle.

If we simply un-did the Reagan tax cuts, we'd be in huge surplus .... which would be fiscally prudent.