October 10, 2007

Ideology v. Our Children

Return of the Goldwater GOP -- by Harold Meyerson

Just outside our nation's capital, in affluent Montgomery and Fairfax counties, they still build public schools when the number of school-age children rises above the number that the existing schools can accommodate. . . . They thus increase government spending and withhold revenue from the private-school industry, but I've never heard anyone complain about that. A free public education is a right, or, if you prefer, an entitlement in America, because the nation long ago decided that an educated population is a national good.

You might think that the same logic would apply to providing children with health care, that the gains to the nation from having a healthy population would outweigh those of bolstering private health insurance companies in the name of laissez-faire ideology. According to President Bush and the hard-right wing of the Republican Party, though, you'd be sadly mistaken.

Click here for the complete text.


PoliShifter said...

I've written extensivel about this phenomenon before as has Thom Hartmann.

Republicans have this view that all government is bad and wrong. They tend toward this notion that pure capitalism in the Ayn Rand sense of it (no regulation, let market foreces work) is the way we should go.

What they fail to grasp is that it is the public works and public programs that allow capitalism to flourish.

Public education, roads, bridges, laws, rules, and regulations keep the economy going. Republicans think it hurts the economy.

Just like that bridge that collapsed. Republicans didn't want to spend the money to fix it. Well, it's an investment. Commerce and workers cross that bridge everyday fueling the economy.

Public education is vital. You're laying the ground work for creating future leaders and innovators.

There was a time when most people couldn't read or write. It was called the dark ages.

If kids grow up with healthcare keeping them healthy from a young age they are likely to be more healthy when they become adutls which means more productivity and innovation.

I'm tired of Republicans looking at domestic spending as waste. It's not. It's an investment.

It's the American People that make America great, not the Republican Party.

pekka said...

A great post, bird lady, and polishifter's comment was nothing to sneeze about either!

Like a certain Canadian hockey commentator so elegantly put; "it ain't rocket-surgery"...and I add to that; to know that the best investment of any nation can do is to educate her population. America is a special case, though, by having some of the finest institutions of learning and highly educated people co-existing with the schools that would be more representative for the third world with scores of the graduates that are functionally illiterate. How might this help building America escapes all of us except those who are mainly responsible for it?

two crows said...

hi, Poli--
oh, yes -- public works of any sort are seen by Congress [and I believe this extends to both sides of the aisle] as a way to deliver jobs to their districts in order to secure votes.
they have nothing to do with making the country better for the rest of us. only to make it better for the corporations who can give them the money that will pay for the polls to allow them to see how much they can get away with before we turn on them and vote for someone else.

two crows said...

hey, Pekka--
having walked the halls of both sorts of schools during my time [by simple luck of the draw, I was educated in those at the higher end], I have come to the conclusion that it's not by chance that both the best and the worst schools in the developed world coexist in the same country.

Mary Ellen said...

Excellent post, two crows!

It just sickened me while I watched the debate and most of the candidates talked about dumping Social Security and Medicare. First Bush says that the children who are not covered under SCHIP "do" get insurance through Medicare/Medicaid and then they say they want to drop that! How anyone can deny children health care is beyond me. I think EVERY child should be covered...and every adult for that matter. Our country is an embarrassment.

Sorry I didn't get here yesterday, I was trying to get caught up with my housework...looked like someone set off a bomb over the weekend.

two crows said...

hi M E--
:) kids do set off those bombs every so often, don't they?
back when I was in my 30's I told my dad [a died-in-the-wool-republican] that I would never see a penny from social security. he shouted me down swearing that would never happen.
but, even then, I saw the fund being spent on everything else. and I wasn't even following politics that closely at the time.

now, here I am, almost 60 years old, and it looks like I'll never see a penny of the money I put into Social Security.

I wish my dad had been right and I had been wrong.

two crows said...

[lazy, good-for-nothing proof-reader!!]

phil_in_ny said...

The right doesn't want education of any kind at all. Its about keeping people as stupid as possible, so they can keep power.

Most educated people don't vote Republican/conservative, unless its strictly for financial reasons; taxes, etc. Other than that, most people can see through the BS.

Mary Ellen said...

two crows-

watching the debate last night, one of the repug idiots said that those of us who are due to get their social security should be willing to accept less than what we were told we would get and those who are coming after us, should get nothing. Nice...we put the money in, we get nothing back because the Republicans thought Gore was so funny when he talked about a "lock box"?

I wish Gore would run.

two crows said...

hey, M E--
yeah, well, as I say -- as long as 30 years ago, I heard that Congress was plundering the Social Security fund.
there were SO MANY baby boomers and we were shoveling money into the system so much faster than it could be paid out that Congress just couldn't keep its greedy hands out of the cookie jar.

and, after all, it's not as if THEY will ever be in need of that money -- not with the golden parachute they've voted for themselves.

so, what the hey -- let the rest of us eat cake,

two crows said...

hi, Phil--
sorry, have been offline [wallpapering and recycling] ALL day and missed your comment.
of course they don't want an educated electorate. that has never bode well for elected officials.

educated constituents do inconvenient things like read magazines and newspapers and ask politicians why they do some things and don't do others.

what a nuisance! an educated populace gets in the way of the serious business of plundering the country for personal gain.

TomCat said...

The problem with SCHIP, from Bush's perspective is that every penny spent on children, can't be spent on millionaires.

two crows said...

yep, TC--
that also explains our educational system.