A $23 billion emergency proposal to save teacher jobs in the wake of the state budget crisis looks to be hitting the chopping block. Tom Harkin has pulled his amendment from the war supplemental because the White House didn’t forwarded a budget request. Dave Obey says he’ll add it back in on Thursday, but according to Politico, he’s “clearly frustrated by the administration’s approach and, after the setback in the Senate, said the White House is creating conditions that only invite failure.”
A couple of weeks ago, Dave Dayen wrote about a special tax credit that has been allowing hedge funds to make enormous profits from building charter schools. Which, of course, takes money out of public offers and puts it in the pockets of Wall Street profiteers. Juan Gonzalez has been covering this at the New York Daily news, and as he told Amy Goodman, “The result is, you can put in ten million dollars and in seven years double your money.”
Paul Rosenberg wrote a very good post about the practical and philosophical reasons that underpin the conservative desire to dismantle public education:
- The attack on public education itself is a prime example of the attack on social democratic ideas and institutions…this serves to discredit public education, take money away from the public education system, and take money and jobs away from public employees and their unions.
- The siphoning off of certain students into separate learning environments is part of the conservative agenda for inscribing hierarchical differences in society.
- The creation of lucrative money-making opportunities funnels public money to more wealthy members of society.
- The creation of private governance structures further strengthens the power of unaccountable conservative elites, weakening democratic control.
- The private governance structures in turn empower crony networks that can also serve as organizing foundations for further consolidation of conservative power.
The government has set up a series of financial incentives that are loaded in the direction of dismantling public education (as well as the teachers’ unions). The ability of public schools to provide quality education will decrease with additional teacher layoffs, even as hedge funds are financing campaigns for the expansion of charter schools, which they are making a killing from.