Libertarians against public schooling?

Micheal ZK
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Libertarians against public schooling?

For the most part i agree with libertarians about less government control, but i was wondering how this would affect public schools.   Help if you can.


Jormungander
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There is no unified

There is no unified libertarian response to this issue. Some libertarians would want no public schools and others see running schools as one of the few things they would want the government to do.

Personally I would like more competition in schooling. I would like for there to be some kind of a voucher system. Currently the government pays every public school some amount of money per child attending per day. In a voucher system the same thing would happen, except that the money would be tied to the child and not to a school. So if you live next to a piece of sh*t public school you could move your child to a different public school or a private school and the government would pay which ever school he went to the standard amount of money per child per day.

Forcing parents to send their kids to whichever school is closest or spend large sums of money on private schooling seems like a terrible idea to me. I would much rather the US school system be like Sweden's. Competition will make the schools better; a government enforced monopoly that can only be subverted by paying an arm and a leg to go to private schools will not.

Also keep in mind that what I wrote is not the typical libertarian response; there is no typical libertarian response on this issue.

"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."
British General Charles Napier while in India


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I don't think fostering

I don't think fostering competition is the right way to improve schools.  For one thing, it would kick evolution out of schools in the South once and for all (after all, the free market is a hopeless slave to demand, and if the parents would prefer their children taught creationism rather than evolution...).

I have larger critiques against libertarianism in general, but this probably isn't the time or place to discuss it.


Micheal ZK
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Are there any other topics

Are there any other topics like public schooling

that libertarians dont agree on? 


Jormungander
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Micheal ZK wrote:Are there

Micheal ZK wrote:

Are there any other topics like public schooling

that libertarians dont agree on? 

Immigration, foreign policy, welfare, socialized medicine, separation of church and state.....this list could go on.

Lets take immigration for example: personally I think that the government should very strictly monitor who is allowed in to the US. I see that as a necessary service that the state should provide. Other libertarians want the borders to be wide open. They want anyone to come in with no questions asked. I suppose the issue is rather or not a limited government can legitimately tell people whether or not they can come in. I say yes, it can. Others say no, only open borders are truly free.

I'm sure that for most of the other issues I listed above the same kind of situation can be described: different libertarians want different things. For one thing, different libertarians want different limitations on the government. Some would like an ultra-small to non-existent government, others (like myself) would merely like a smaller government. This is a broad set of political stances and opinions. You might as well have asked "what topics to leftists disagree on." There are so many different kinds of leftists that some will disagree with others on political issues. It is the same way with libertarians.

"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."
British General Charles Napier while in India


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Thank you very much,

Thank you very much, Jormungander, for your help.  I too belive that smaller government is the answer, which would explain my interest in libertarianism.  However there is more research to be done.

 

Out of curiosity, how would you propose to limit or regulate immigration?

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From what I understand the

From what I understand the main libertarian banner is just smaller government, less taxes, more freedom.  Of course each individual will differ on how small a government they want.

 

When it comes to schools, I'm a little split.  I think that competition between schools is a great idea, and kids shouldn't be forced to go the crappiest school in the area because of where their parents decided to buy a house.  However, as was mentioned before the majority of people in this country think that creationism in one form or another should be taught in public schools.  Unfortunately, I just don't think people in this country aren't smart enough to decide which school to send their kid to.

"It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring." - Carl Sagan


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V1per41 wrote:Unfortunately,

V1per41 wrote:

Unfortunately, I just don't think people in this country aren't smart enough to decide which school to send their kid to.

That is exactly the kind of attitude libertarians are trying to fight against. The idea that we need make decisions for others because if people decided for themselves, some would decide wrong. I would rather allow some people to make poor decisions, rather than have all decision making taken away. If we allowed people to make education decisions, then many will make the wrong choice. That does not make our current system of sending children to the closest school available any better.

My public high school biology teacher danced around the topic of evolution. She didn't seem to want to just state it as fact. She would always phrase statements about it as though it might be true (not so subtly implying that it might not); rather than just using simple declarative sentences. We don't need to use private religious schools to deprive students of science educations; our public schools are doing that job just fine. I think that the dismal state of science education would improve if public schools were forced to compete with private schools. If vouchers were in place and there was a local private school who's students scored higher on science tests than the local public school, most parents would flee the public school like a sinking ship. Currently, teachers can not experience negative consequences no matter how poorly they perform. Even if a biology teacher lacks confidence in the existence of evolution, parents will have no choice but to subject their children to a sub-standard education (unless they are rich and can afford private schooling). We need a way for public schools to be placed in jeopardy; where if they don't perform well then they could loose most students to other, better schools. And as a consequence some parents will make the wrong choice of sending their kids to religious schools; that is the price of freedom.

"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."
British General Charles Napier while in India


Jormungander
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Micheal ZK wrote:Out of

Micheal ZK wrote:

Out of curiosity, how would you propose to limit or regulate immigration?

Now that is a real trick issue. My take on it is that our military should almost always act as a defensive military. I would propose that military border patrols are exactly the kind of defensive actions that our military should be engaged in. Of course, we can not adequately defend our country while stationing troops all over the world. And we especially can't while sinking into the quagmire that is Iraq. If we stop policing the middle east, we could use our military primarily for defending our borders. Keeping our borders secure, keeping shipping lanes open, protecting aid works and embassies and engaging in purely defensive warfare are about the only things our military should be doing.

I also advocate denying illegal immigrants all social services: no schooling for their children, no access to emergency medical care without upfront payment, and so on. I know that this sounds like a really mean thing to do, but I think it is necessary. In California many emergency rooms have shut down because they have to admit everyone who shows up, but illegals don't pay for their medical services. Illegals driving emergency rooms out of business harms all of us. This is a life or death issue that can not be tolerated. I wish there was a less callous way of keeping emergency rooms open, but I think that denying medical attention to illegals who can't pay is the only way. Denying the children of illegal immigrants schooling is for the same reason. Most don't pay taxes, but they get to use our public school system and drain its resources. Of course the problem is that their children are American citizens, entitled to public services that their parents refuse to pay for. The only solution I can think of for that is to make the children of illegal immigrants non-citizens, lacking the right to access public services like the rest of us. That would effectively destroy the attraction that America holds for illegals. If they can not be leaches draining our public services dry then they will have less reason to come here (though they still would come to get cash, just they would not want to start families here). That being said, I understand how callous the things I wrote are, and I understand how unpopular such ideas are. Rather than solve this problem, we will just have our social services degrade thanks to the actions of illegal aliens. I really hope my parents never have a medical emergency, because the nearest emergency room closed because it was driving the hospital towards bankruptcy.

I fully support allowing legal immigration. Just in case someone breaks out into a "you hate foreigners" rant, as has happened to me in the past.

 

Also: sorry for my gigantic, multiple posts everyone. I am finding it hard to concisely convey my political views.

"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."
British General Charles Napier while in India


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I think a better solution

I think a better solution would be if states funded public schools equally based on number of children in the school rather than the current method of funding them mainly through property taxes in the school district. That way there wouldn't be the extreme difference in performance between wealthy suburban and poor rural or urban schools.

 

Please note that the differences between public and private schools is greatly exaggerated - unlike public schools, private schools can pick and choose what kids they take, and can expel problem ones without having to still pick up the tab for their education. Not only that, parents who don't really care (a big problem in poor performing schools) are very unlikely to choose public schools. The other problem with the current system that makes the private schools look better is only the succesful parents who care will send them there - making it less likely they have parents who are addicts, single parents, working 2 jobs to get by, or any other problem that could affect how they do.

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Personally, I have always

Personally, I have always viewed public education as the government investing in a new generation, and what the gen will do when it takes power from the previous one. To do so haphazardly or poorly is to risk the investment and the future of the government and the people. Education should be mandatory and free to all citizens. All the way through university.

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Public schools are tools of

Public schools are tools of oppression. This invention was made compulsory by empress Mary Theresia, who needed a lot of obedient underlings, because she had some industrially rich areas to conquer militarily.  It certainly did it's good in educating people, but today we're all longing for freedom, justice, self-determination, love and peace and so on,and this type of schooling is not good for us anymore.
I appreciate the work of my countryman, John Amos Komensky, the teacher of nations, who humanized the schooling a lot. Schola ludus. But this humanization of dehumanized institutions must proceed. Rudolf Steiner did a great work on this, he invented Waldorf schools, from nursery school to university, which are much closer to  how children and young people should be educated today. Waldorf schools are very demanded among parents, there's everything better than in an average school. I'm sure there's much less chicane, drugs, crazy teachers, drunk teachers, jock gangs, (I've seen it all) and I believe there was not even one school shooting till this day.

Of course, there are complains, Jews complains that it's non-jewish, not-Christian-proof school that teaches *German* language, Christians complains that Rudolf Steiner was an occultist, pagan, that Nazis used some his writings, and so on. But the only complain what non-religional people can have, that there could be more science. Waldorf schooling is mainly focused on right hemisphere activities, while our conservative schooling worships maths and physics. (yuck)


As for the problem of immigrants, I don't think anything good about closing the borders. It's a guilt of USA for a large part, that there are poor and dying refugees, and this poverty must be dealt with. Closing of borders won't help, either you spend your economics on feeding the people, or on killing them, because they will give no other choice, they're desperate. While there will be a poverty abroad, from there will come either financially-poor immigrants, or kiloton-rich bombs.
Strict border policy will only encourage a more corruption among military/rangers and more ripping off the immigrants by smugglers.
Killing the people makes just more of the poor refugees and immigrants, it's no real solution. Neither is the economic system of powerful corporations, in close relation to politics. It's as bad as Church and state.
The only solution is to save the world from poverty, by worldwide sharing of capitalistic excessive resources. This is the only way how to stop immigrants, how to stop spending our economy on wars, and how to rise a living, moral and ecologic standards worldwidely and locally.

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Vastet
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Vastet wrote:Personally, I

Vastet wrote:

Personally, I have always viewed public education as the government investing in a new generation, and what the gen will do when it takes power from the previous one. To do so haphazardly or poorly is to risk the investment and the future of the government and the people. Education should be mandatory and free to all citizens. All the way through university.

In re-reading this, I see the need to clarify something before someone takes it and runs with it. I didn't mean that education through university should be mandatory; simply that an education should be mandatory.

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V1per41
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Jormungander wrote:V1per41

Jormungander wrote:

V1per41 wrote:

Unfortunately, I just don't think people in this country aren't smart enough to decide which school to send their kid to.

That is exactly the kind of attitude libertarians are trying to fight against. The idea that we need make decisions for others because if people decided for themselves, some would decide wrong. I would rather allow some people to make poor decisions, rather than have all decision making taken away. If we allowed people to make education decisions, then many will make the wrong choice. That does not make our current system of sending children to the closest school available any better.

My public high school biology teacher danced around the topic of evolution. She didn't seem to want to just state it as fact. She would always phrase statements about it as though it might be true (not so subtly implying that it might not); rather than just using simple declarative sentences. We don't need to use private religious schools to deprive students of science educations; our public schools are doing that job just fine. I think that the dismal state of science education would improve if public schools were forced to compete with private schools. If vouchers were in place and there was a local private school who's students scored higher on science tests than the local public school, most parents would flee the public school like a sinking ship. Currently, teachers can not experience negative consequences no matter how poorly they perform. Even if a biology teacher lacks confidence in the existence of evolution, parents will have no choice but to subject their children to a sub-standard education (unless they are rich and can afford private schooling). We need a way for public schools to be placed in jeopardy; where if they don't perform well then they could loose most students to other, better schools. And as a consequence some parents will make the wrong choice of sending their kids to religious schools; that is the price of freedom.

I completely understand your arguments and in principle strongly agree with them.  The problem is that in practice the general public in this country just aren't smart enough.  When over 50% of the people would voluntarily pay more money to send their kid to a lower quality school, then you run into a real problem where the good schools can't get enough students and are forced to close.

I'm split on this issue for this very reason.

 

"It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring." - Carl Sagan


Micheal ZK
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Parents should have to

Parents should have to choose a school from a Fox reality TV show.

 


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I consider myself

I consider myself Libertarian, and even though a lot of public schools are shit, a lot of private schools are wack and over-priced. I feel like kids who attend public schools tend to experience more diversity and deal with more realism. It can help them learn how to deal with bullshit. I hated high school, even though I went to a very diverse and well-ranked place, but I wouldn't rather go to private school. One of the reasons school sucks so much is the inane repetition. Private schools, to me, would be much much worse, and much less diverse and interesting.

I babysat for a girl whose parents made her attend an expensive private Jewish school. It was tiny (bad when it comes to cliques and girls), and she wanted to transfer to public school because it "looked more fun." I felt bad for her.

Of course it depends on the situation and blah blah blah...but I'm not against public schools.

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