Tag Archives: school vouchers

Ugh. Well, I Guess That Answers The Question About Whether Being President Would Make Trump More Civil…

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Apparently during a meeting with Democratic Senators, President Trump repeatedly referred to Senator Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas,” the mocking nickname (which didn’t originate with him) often used by her detractors to refer to Warren’s unsubstantiated claims of Native American heritage. Warren once exploited what she later asserted was oral family lore to benefit from a university’s affirmative action hiring policy.

No, she was not at the meeting. From George Washington’s 11o rules of civility:

Rule 89: Speak not evil of the absent, for it is unjust.

Ugh. To say that Presidents Trump’s mockery was uncivil and unpresidential is insufficient. Using playground name-calling to denigrate any elected official is boorish, juvenile and really, really stupid as well. Continue reading

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Filed under Character, Education, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Etiquette and manners, Government & Politics, Leadership

The Ethics Alarms “Fake News” Project: Seeking Ethics Distinctions Among Web Hoaxes, False Narratives,”Fake News” And Negligent, Incompetent or Biased Reporting (PART I: The New York Times School Voucher Headline)

I LOVE this story! I wish it WERE true!!!

I LOVE this story! I wish it WERE true!!!

Yesterday’s New York Times included a story headlined  Free Market For Education: Economists Generally Don’t Buy It, and it stated,

The odds are good that privatizing education will be part of the agenda for President-elect Donald J. Trump’s administration. […] You might think that most economists agree with this overall approach, because economists generally like free markets. For example, over 90 percent of the members of the University of Chicago’s panel of leading economists thought that ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft made consumers better off by providing competition for the highly regulated taxi industry.But economists are far less optimistic about what an unfettered market can achieve in education. Only a third of economists on the Chicago panel agreed that students would be better off if they all had access to vouchers to use at any private (or public) school of their choice.

While economists are trained about the value of free markets, they are also trained to spot when markets can’t work alone and government intervention is required.

That summation, however, was misleading to the point of falsehood. As the Scott Alexander points out at his blog Slate Star Codex,  the source for the story indicated something quite different—materially different:

economists_views

Got that? Scott Alexander writes:

Continue reading

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Filed under Education, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Train Wrecks, Journalism & Media, language, U.S. Society

And Here’s Why The Supreme Court Majority Was Right In Shelby v. Holder…

Ok, if you don't buy the theory that they hurt the public schools, how about this: they're racist!

Ok, if you don’t buy the theory that they hurt the public schools, how about this: they’re racist!

In its much maligned decision in Shelby v. Holder, the Supreme Court declared that the Justice Department could not interfere with state legislative decisions affecting voting rights based on 60 year old data about racist practices prior to the 1965 Voting Rights Act. The Federal government should not be able to over-ride the will of the people and its elected legislatures without a compelling and overwhelming interest, and allowing the large list of states designated as subject to the Act invited abuse of power. What kind of abuse? This kind:

The U.S. Justice Department has filed a lawsuit to stop the Louisiana from distributing school vouchers to poor black families in any district that remains under a desegregation court order. Over 600 public schools are affected. The argument of Holder’s Justice Department  is just as ridiculous as it reads: it is that “many of those vouchers impeded the desegregation process.” You see, if black children are able to go to better, private schools thanks to the vouchers, the percentage of whites to blacks in failing but desegregated public schools will go up, “impeding” desegregation. Can’t have that! What citizens would want politicized, absurd bureaucrats who reason like this second-guessing their legislature?

As the Washington Post noted in an incredulous editorial it called, pulling no punches, Justice Department bids to trap poor, black children in ineffective schools: Continue reading

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Filed under Education, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Law & Law Enforcement, Race