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Author Topic: I am willing to argue public education has ruined this country...  (Read 8411 times)
Anonymous
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July 04, 2011, 03:26:47 AM
 #1

Only a few lifetimes ago things were very different in the United States.  Originality and variety were common currency; our freedom from regimentation made us the miracle of the world; social-class boundaries were relatively easy to cross; our citizenry was marvelously confident, inventive and able to do much for themselves independently, and to think for themselves.  We were something special, we Americans, all by ourselves, without government sticking its nose into and measuring every aspect of our lives, without institutions and social agencies telling us how to think and feel….[T]here are some studies that suggest literacy at the time of the American Revolution, at least for non-slaves on the Eastern seaboard, was close to total.

- J.T. Gatto

I think our populace is at the pinnacle of its desensitization. Our populace has been subject to a mediocre one-size-fits-all education, with no room for improvement due to its castratized incentive and a national curriculum of authoritarianism. All originality and self-reliance has been sucked dry of every individual put through our schools.

This is why we are doomed: Poor, provisional education.
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smellyBobby
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July 04, 2011, 03:36:35 AM
 #2

Look at Sweden, the balance between free-market and government restrictions.



http://www.economist.com/node/11535645?story_id=11535645

"BIG-STATE, social-democratic Sweden seems an odd place to look for a free-market revolution. Yet that is what is under way in the country's schools."

"The local municipality must pay the school what it would have spent educating each child itself—a sum of SKr48,000-70,000 ($8,000-12,000) a year, depending on the child's age and the school's location. Children must be admitted on a first-come, first-served basis—there must be no religious requirements or entrance exams. Nothing extra can be charged for, but making a profit is fine."

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July 04, 2011, 03:46:50 AM
 #3

Look at Sweden, the balance between free-market and government restrictions.



http://www.economist.com/node/11535645?story_id=11535645

"BIG-STATE, social-democratic Sweden seems an odd place to look for a free-market revolution. Yet that is what is under way in the country's schools."

"The local municipality must pay the school what it would have spent educating each child itself—a sum of SKr48,000-70,000 ($8,000-12,000) a year, depending on the child's age and the school's location. Children must be admitted on a first-come, first-served basis—there must be no religious requirements or entrance exams. Nothing extra can be charged for, but making a profit is fine."

This is a total perversion of the term "free-market" and the usual totally misguided idea of education. You can't put a price on education. You can't throw money at a child and say "be taught". Life doesn't work like that.
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July 04, 2011, 03:58:19 AM
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For once, I completely agree with you Atlas.  Public education is constantly being dumbed down to the worst students in the class.  It's actually becoming more difficult to fail than to pass.   Roll Eyes
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July 04, 2011, 04:15:25 AM
 #5

All knowing Atlas please answer this simple question for me.

If public education is evil, and Sweden has more state influence in their education system than America does, then why is Sweden not more of a failure than the U.S. ? Why are the Swedish people generally more happy? How come their Society is not a massive failure as you argue?

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July 04, 2011, 04:20:31 AM
 #6

All knowing Atlas please answer this simple question for me.

If public education is evil, and Sweden has more state influence in their education system than America does, then why is Sweden not more of a failure than the U.S. ? Why are the Swedish people generally more happy? How come their Society is not a massive failure as you argue?
The equation is a lot more complex than that. The US is fucking large. The effects are worse when you put a single regime against a large, centralized populace. While Sweden is small.

In addition, they may be ignorantly happy but from what I've seen their culture is disgusting. I've seen it first-hand on this forum. They have been truly desensitized to true compassion and its due to their lack of a family unit in childhood.
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July 04, 2011, 04:38:29 AM
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All knowing Atlas please answer this simple question for me.

If public education is evil, and Sweden has more state influence in their education system than America does, then why is Sweden not more of a failure than the U.S. ? Why are the Swedish people generally more happy? How come their Society is not a massive failure as you argue?

I am going to repeat this until you stop ignoring the facts.

http://www.economist.com/node/7880173

Sweden is a stagnating mess. The only reason it isn't in terrible shape right now is because of all of the wealth it gathered during the period where it had extremely free markets (19th century through to the 1930s) and because of big reforms in the 90s, and even now it is in bad shape economically.

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July 04, 2011, 05:55:34 AM
 #8

In addition, they may be ignorantly happy but from what I've seen their culture is disgusting. I've seen it first-hand on this forum. They have been truly desensitized to true compassion and its due to their lack of a family unit in childhood.
You, sir, are disgusting here. Were you 'desensitized' as well? it might explain why you bash the culture of an entire country based on one example, from an internet forum of all places...

I don't mean to be rude here. But please try to see something of the world before make blanket statements based on things you have read somewhere on the internetz. Go visit Sweden once Smiley

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July 04, 2011, 06:21:39 AM
 #9

All knowing Atlas please answer this simple question for me.

If public education is evil, and Sweden has more state influence in their education system than America does, then why is Sweden not more of a failure than the U.S. ? Why are the Swedish people generally more happy? How come their Society is not a massive failure as you argue?

Sweden lacks the "multiculturalism" and "diversity" with which America is so "blessed"...



(homogeneous cultures historically survive much longer than "multicultural melting-pots")

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July 04, 2011, 07:13:56 AM
 #10

I wonder how many will have the courage to read about what really goes on in Public Education in America.

http://www.deliberatedumbingdown.com/
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July 04, 2011, 07:17:17 AM
 #11

LastBattle, the article you cite is full of bias and misinformation. Here are the facts.


Here is government revenue showing clearly that the U.S has the lowest tax-rate.


Here is GDP/Capita growth showing little relationship between tax-rate and GDP growth.


Now if Sweden was in a big mess, would it not have high unemployment and be on the brink of collapse just like Greece? Especially considering that you argue that Sweden has been in a mess for such a long time.

Well the unemployment numbers show that Sweden, and other Scandinavian countries unemployment below the European average. Unfortunately there was no U.S overlay.



Protip: Make sure the articles you read actually reflect what is happening in the world.


UPDATE:

Here are the links for the graphs: gdp per capita

Start here for stats: World bank development indicators

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July 04, 2011, 07:43:45 AM
 #12

LastBattle, the article you cite is full of bias and misinformation. Here are the facts.


Here is the tax-rate showing clearly that the U.S has the lowest tax-rate.


Here is GDP/Capita growth showing little relationship between tax-rate and GDP growth.


Now if Sweden was in a big mess, would it not have high unemployment and be on the brink of collapse just like Greece? Especially considering that you argue that Sweden has been in a mess for such a long time.

Well the unemployment numbers show that Sweden, and other Scandinavian countries unemployment below the European average. Unfortunately there was no U.S overlay.



Protip: Make sure the articles you read actually reflect what is happening in the world.

Again you feel the need to post irrelevant graphs. Sigh. Allow me:

-That first graph is indicating revenue, not tax rates, which are much different (how income tax brackets work, for example, modifies things without changing the actual rates)

-Come to think of it, did you even read the article? Your second graph is utterly unrelated to the article's main points.

-Nope. You didn't read the article and are instead shooting off wild guesses as to its contents and attacking strawmen. Damn shame, too, since you will never stop talking bull about Sweden if you refuse to bother reading what you are critiquing.

Sweden has low official unemployment for the same reason as Japan: government subsidized window sitters who are paid to make unemployment statistics look prettier. In Sweden, this is augmented by many workers getting hired and then spending most of their "career" on sick leave. I don't think you would classify Japan as being a "stellar example to follow" economically, either.

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July 04, 2011, 07:57:34 AM
 #13


Again you feel the need to post irrelevant graphs. Sigh. Allow me:

-That first graph is indicating revenue, not tax rates, which are much different (how income tax brackets work, for example, modifies things without changing the actual rates)

-Come to think of it, did you even read the article? Your second graph is utterly unrelated to the article's main points.

-Nope. You didn't read the article and are instead shooting off wild guesses as to its contents and attacking strawmen. Damn shame, too, since you will never stop talking bull about Sweden if you refuse to bother reading what you are critiquing.

Sweden has low official unemployment for the same reason as Japan: government subsidized window sitters who are paid to make unemployment statistics look prettier. In Sweden, this is augmented by many workers getting hired and then spending most of their "career" on sick leave. I don't think you would classify Japan as being a "stellar example to follow" economically, either.

Revenue includes tax. So the first graph shows the percentage of GDP that is collected by the government. Of-course most of it is tax, but not all.

And "window-sitters" is this coming from the same biased article that you use as the pillar of your beliefs? Look at the graphs, or are they just fake because they do not fit your perspective of the world?

Nonetheless even if Japan has Window sitters, what difference does it make? The Japanese aren't complaining as much as the Americans are. It seems as if corporate interests want you to believe that Window sitters are evil so that they can preach their "low-tax/low accountability" agenda.

So I repeat, go find a better article, over a series of posts in different threads you have used that single link to support your beliefs. I have presented information from multiple sources yet you are unable to do the same.

If your position is strong it should not be hard for you to go and find better statistics.

It is clear that Sweden and other Nordic countries with their high taxes and big government are outpacing most industrialized countries.

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July 04, 2011, 11:42:12 AM
 #14

Only a few lifetimes ago things were very different in the United States.  Originality and variety were common currency; our freedom from regimentation made us the miracle of the world; social-class boundaries were relatively easy to cross; our citizenry was marvelously confident, inventive and able to do much for themselves independently, and to think for themselves.  We were something special, we Americans, all by ourselves, without government sticking its nose into and measuring every aspect of our lives, without institutions and social agencies telling us how to think and feel….[T]here are some studies that suggest literacy at the time of the American Revolution, at least for non-slaves on the Eastern seaboard, was close to total.

- J.T. Gatto

I think our populace is at the pinnacle of its desensitization. Our populace has been subject to a mediocre one-size-fits-all education, with no room for improvement due to its castratized incentive and a national curriculum of authoritarianism. All originality and self-reliance has been sucked dry of every individual put through our schools.

This is why we are doomed: Poor, provisional education.
There have been sort of conspiracy theory going on that US school system is being dumbed down on purpose, but I don't know how well-founded claim that is. I agree that one size-fits-all is not what schools should be in contemporary world. That, however, does not mean good results can't be achieved under such system. I believe one-size-fits-all what is given just about anywhere in the world (except maybe for the most gifted and people with disabilities) and these schools happen to outperform the schools of US. Another question is are even these schools really high-quality.

Not so long ago there were news that Texas is going for historical revisionism in their textbooks against certain political views (don't know if it actually happened). If thats possible in the US education system, then I have very little faith for the quality and impartiality of your education-system in general. One thing that comes around very often is this attitude of superiority of American culture (or past culture) and I'm not sure if its the media or indeed the education thats shoving the propaganda. Recently there was a  12-year-old girl who connected family-trees of all but one US presidents to one British king (so she's probably pretty smart) but then used this sentence in her work: "Barack Obama, US president, the world leader". I found that quite funny.
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July 04, 2011, 01:09:35 PM
 #15

It is clear that Sweden and other Nordic countries with their high taxes and big government are outpacing most industrialized countries.

Sweden and other Nordic countries spend their money on things that are more productive than warfare. Therefore they achieve a high standard of living despite their socialism (and Sweden today is much less socialistic than it was in the 1970s anyway).
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July 04, 2011, 01:18:19 PM
 #16

  Nothing extra can be charged for, but making a profit is fine."

That sounds awful (and way better than the US). So if you want to buy more education you can't buy it from the people you get most of your education from? Or you aren't allowed to buy extra from anyone? Either way sucks.


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July 04, 2011, 01:19:38 PM
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Schoolsucksproject.com is relevant to this discussion. Very good podcast imo.

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July 04, 2011, 01:28:49 PM
 #18

Atlas - you have not suggested an alternative?


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July 04, 2011, 01:40:15 PM
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How is it that no one bothered to blow his ridiculous statement (it's not an argument without supporting proof) out of the water with this simple chart:






How odd that all the top scoring nations no only use far more pervasive public schools than the US, but they're also mostly socialist and/or heavily centrally planned.  Communist China actually blew everyone else away.  How ironic.


The problem here is that Atlas is just a child.  He boils down complex issues like national education into something simple enough for him to understand.  Education is exceedingly complex and, of the many issues plaguing US education, control by the government is one of the least relevant.  Things like uninvolved parents, society's low value for education, and kids too busy on their iPhones are all far more relevant issues that have nothing to do with the government.

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July 04, 2011, 02:01:33 PM
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How odd that all the top scoring nations no only use far more pervasive public schools than the US, but they're also mostly socialist and/or heavily centrally planned.  Communist China actually blew everyone else away.  How ironic.

You mean 'Communist' China which has some of the lowest tax rates (20-25% corporate tax, 20% capital gains) in the world? I assume Hong Kong, which also performed amazingly well, and Singapore come under 'mostly socialist' too? Maybe the reason nobody used that chart is because it shows that market-embracing nations like China and Singapore can outperform socialist monoliths on a fraction of the resource.

Any comparison involving Norway in an economics debate is fundamentally flawed. The country is an anomoly of economics, due mostly to the fact that 20% of its economy comes from petroleum products, and its petroleum exports alone are greater than its entire imports.

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