The right to choose your government.

Monopoly Government Schools

I firmly believe that monopoly government education is an evil thing, and say so quite plainly on my Panarchy South Jersey website.

Some days ago I got this comment from a fellow by the name of Joseph Finlayson who visited the site. Here’s what he had to say.

Hi, I’m just a guy, a regular guy. Not too poor, not too rich and I’m just looking out for my own interests. If I went private with my kid’s education, it’d cost me a fortune – I don’t want to do it. So, while my kids are growing up, I’ll choose the government that gives public education. As soon as that’s up, I’ll switch governments and choose a more minarchistic one. Result = the government that provides public education will be cash starved, and either will not be able to provide public education – or will be forced to tax citizens at the prevailing market rate for their education.

To which I responded:

That is correct. “I’m just looking out for my own interests.” That’s fine. But you also want ME to be looking out for YOUR own interests, while I am, at the same time, just looking out for mine. Where is the justice here? Another example. Friends of mine have kids, and they want to send them to private schools. They are not rich either, but they will do whatever it takes. They pay the tuition for the private school, AND they pay for public school education, all at the same time. Is this fair?

But let’s move from justice to generosity. If we cared about other people, such as yourself, having a hard time (hypothetically) educating their own children out of what are often meager assets in the early years of their married life, shouldn’t we be generous and gladly pay our taxes for their benefit? This turns generosity on its head, because you cannot force someone to be generous. I myself contribute gladly to education by supporting the parochial schools here in South Jersey and elsewhere. And I would contribute more of what is now taken from me in the form of property taxes. Instead, the taxes are taken from me, whether I am willing or not. Is this any way for people to treat one another? I don’t think so.

My answer is that each family should do what it can to educate its children. Grandparents are great assets in the education of youngsters. And there are always very generous people who will contribute to schools so that no child is deprived of a good education. You just have to have a little more confidence in the inherent goodness of people.

Of course, as a panarchist, I would not deprive anyone of the right to send their kids to government schools. I merely insist they do so without forcing me to contribute to their school. Seems only right.


2010/08/19 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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