Why Leftists Should Embrace (Some) Charter Schools

Related Post Roulette

7 Responses

  1. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    “The left, to be quite blunt about it, has something to conserve. It is the right that has inherited the ambitious modernist urge to destroy and innovate in the name of a universal project. Social democrats, characteristically modest in style and ambition, need to speak more assertively of past gains.

    “The rise of the social service state, the century-long construction of a public sector whose goods and services illustrate and promote our collective identity and common purposes, the institution of welfare as a matter of right and its provision as a social duty: these were no mean accomplishments.”

    Depends on who you talk to. There are certainly people who’d look at the “social service state” and see an apparatus dedicated to endless coddling of thoughtless permament adolescence; who’d look at “the institution of welfare as a matter of right and its provision as a social duty” as being a normalization and acceptance of freeloading.Report

    • Rothbard: Statists, in fact, are really opposed to charity. They often argue that charity is demeaning and degrading to the recipient, and that he should therefore be taught that the money is rightly his, to be given to him by the government as his due. But this oft-felt degradation stems, as Isabel Paterson pointed out, from the fact that the recipient of charity is not self-supporting on the market and that he is out of the production circuit and no longer providing a service in exchange for one received.

      However, granting him the moral and legal right to mulct his fellows increases his moral degradation instead of ending it, for the beneficiary is now further removed from the production line than ever.

      An act of charity, when given voluntarily, is generally considered temporary and offered with the object of helping a man to help himself. But when the dole is ladled out by the State, it becomes permanent and perpetually degrading, keeping the recipients in a state of subservience.

      We are not attempting to argue at this point that to be subservient in this way is degrading; we simply say that anyone who considers private charity degrading must logically conclude that State charity is far more so. Mises, furthermore, points out that free-market exchange—always condemned by statists for being impersonal and “unfeeling”—is precisely the relation that avoids all degradation and subservience.Report

      • Avatar Ken Cartisano in reply to tom van dyke says:

        I think you’ve got it backwards. It is far more degrading to accept charity from individuals and neighbors, than it is from an impartial and non-corporeal state. It is this faceless edifice that facilitates the acceptance of welfare so readily and so pervasively.
        Also, it is obtusely hygienic to discuss free-market production circuits to someone who is in fear of losing their shelter or having no food. That’s just my opinion, of course.Report

  2. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    “I’d also add that voucher schemes are antithetical to democratic decision-making in that they involve atomized individuals making isolated choices rather than equal citizens and/or their representatives making collective decisions that bring about equity.”

    The Constitution doesn’t say anything about “collective decisions that bring about equity”. Indeed, why is Congress guaranteed at least three members for each state if the foundation of our government weren’t supposed to be “atomized individuals making isolated choices”?

    The anti-voucher attitude seems to be that if everyone’s in hell together then that’s better than some people getting to go to heaven.Report

  3. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    “While the traditionalists support changes to the public school paradigm, they’re also scared of tinkering too much with a system that works well—and has worked well—for a ton of students.”

    This begs the question of whether the extant school system does work well. It’s entirely possible to argue that students who go on to successful lives do as much despite their schooling as because of it.Report

  4. Avatar tom van dyke says:

    “[C]harters are playing a powerful role in reviving democratic participation in public education, expanding opportunities for progressive methods in public school classrooms, and providing new energy to community-based, community-controlled school initiatives for communities of color.”

    Now I’m against them, then. What a frigging nightmare, more progressive experimentation on our kids and rule by racial cabals.

    These solipsistic soliloquies—of the left, by the left and for the left—are somewhat appalling to the general audience, with their buzzwords [“collective identity”] and drivebys on those outside the cocoon [Michelle Rhee, “odious”].

    But I suppose they have value, since the left controls Big Ed. The point of this masterpiece of Left-ese is that charter schools might not be so bad afterall*. Y’all in the ed establishment get your heads together on this, and get back to us regular people who pay your salaries and submit our kids to your ideological mercies.

    * Fortunately, I’m reasonably fluent in Left-ese as well as English and therefore was able to get the gist.Report

  5. Avatar Art Deco says:

    I am trying to think of a cliche you didn’t hit in this post.Report