I didn't notice anyone touching on this point back in the education tangent, so I might as well. My follow-up with the overall argument ties back to it anyway.
MoghLiechty2 wrote:You're darn right money's getting wasted. If there's on thing we should realize it's that pouring more money into the current system isn't helping. Something has got to be done with how it's getting spent. Privatization/vouchers anyone?
Not so fast.
Dumping money into a system nobody cares enough about to police is still a superior option than dumping money into a system nobody cares enough about to police and
which exists to accumulate as much money as possible.
The current private school system is dominated by people who are spending 100% (theoretically) of their own (usually ample) money, and so would be expected to care far more than, well, most Americans about education - otherwise they'd just use the public school system.
That's what makes private schools have some degree of quality - because the customers actually care
. A market in which the customers don't care about product quality (read: most of the people currently in public school, and probably some in private school too) can not be expected to produce quality product, because there would be no selection pressure in favor of quality product.
Privatization does not magically make product better. People caring about the product makes it better, private or otherwise (compare the quality of the US military compared to the military forces of other nations, in terms not only of capability but of discipline, morale, and other factors that money doesn't affect), and America lacks that for education.
Or, in short, American public education sucks because most of us don't give a shit - and frankly even if we did we wouldn't be able to recognize a good education if it slapped us in the face. So if you took all those people and put them in private education, then private education would end up sucking too, for the exact same reason.
That's a good example of why republican politics are thought of as senseless, partisan dogmatics. The thought there is that privatization makes things better. But there's no explanation - apparently people are to think this mechanism is some form of free-market magic
. Actual analysis of the issue shows that there are actual reasons
behind product quality or the lack thereof, rather than buzzwords, and that the republican platform isn't simply wrong - it's not even wrong, it's completely inapplicable as a useful decision-making process.
I think it's unfortunate what happened to the republican party. They've basically become the charicature of neoconservatism, a political party that exists solely as a joke. And people are very, very slowly starting to figure this out. Obama should abandon the party as they deserve to be abandoned, but he's a politician, and can do so no faster than the speed at which everyone realizes the Grand Old Party is just about literally incapable of useful contribution to the nation's government anymore.