Tuesday, November 29, 2005

The culture of corruption, alive and well in Ohio

Jim Horn at Schools Matter has an interesting post about uber-privatizer David Brennan. The constitutionality of his for-profit charter schools is a pending question before the Ohio Supreme Court-- the same Ohio Supreme Court that consists of six justices that have taken campaign contributions from Brennan.

Can you say "culture of corruption," boys and girls?


Blogger Malcolm Kirkpatrick said...

Are charter schools "public" schools? "It does not matter if a cat is black or white, so long as it catches mice"--Deng Tsao Ping.

We are all private individuals and public citizens. The difference between "government employee" and "independent contractor" is a matter of who bears responsibility for taxes and unemployment compensation, not of competence. People do not become more intelligent, altruistic, better informed, or capable when they enter into an employment relation with a government agency.

Unions, even "public sector" unions like the NEA, are --private-- 301-c(5) corporations. If corporate contributions make politicians' motives suspect, then the NEA taints more Democrats than Mr. Brennan has Republicans.

Government oversight is one accountability mechanism. As Chubb and Moe observed, regulatory bodies often get captured by the industries they ostensibly regulate "in the public interest". Domination of the credentialing process by teacher unions is an example. Public sector unions dominate the Hawaii Teacher Standards Board. The faculty of the University of Hawaii College of Education are members of the UHPA, an NEA subsidiary.

The most effective accountability mechanism humans have yet devised is the ability of unhappy customers to take their business elsewhere. Charter schools, school vouchers, and subsidized homeschooling provide this.

The State (governmant, generally) is in a conflict of interest when it simultaneously operates and regulates schools.

2:52 AM  

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