'Training', not 'education' purpose of schools raises warning bells

by John DíAloia Jr.

July 29, 2003

Suspicions confirmed. Right from the top. Right from the Governor herself. In plain language. The educational policy of the State of Kansas is to train workers for industry - and she wants more tax dollars to make it happen.

Educate a child and he will be able to adjust to the turbulence of the market place; train a child for a job and he will be dependent upon government to retrain him when buggy whips are no longer in style.

"Sebelius said that businesses need a well-trained work force and that students need more than a high school education to perform well in a work climate that demands higher technical skills." This line is out of Jim Sullinger's July 17 article in the Kansas City Star about the Guv's discussion with the editorial board of the newspaper, a discussion in which she talked about increased taxation needed to fund education.

A well-trained, not a well-educated workforce. A work force that performs well in a technical work climate, not a citizen who can think and question and understands what makes society function and why he has the freedom he enjoys. Educate a child and he will be able to adjust to the turbulence of the market place; train a child for a job and he will be dependent upon government to retrain him when buggy whips are no longer in style.

The Guvís view of the government educational system is exactly what raised red flags for the critics of the School-to-Work program. Her remarks are convincing proof that the rationale for government schools amongst liberal politicians is not to educate the next generation - it is to control the makeup of the labor force while providing workers for industry and tax generators for government. Those who talk about training as being the purpose of government schools are telling their audience that they do not want an educated public - an educated public would be much more likely to see their power-grabbing control schemes for what they are and turn them out of office.

If parents needed a straw to make the decision to extract their kids from the clutches of the educrats, this could be it. Two friends commented on the Guvís remark. To quote one: "You train animals, you educate people. If only people could understand that ... you are viewed as economic cattle." The other wrote: "We are reverting to the peasant class. The nobility, the bureaucrats, will control."

I do not know if this friend reads the New York Daily News, but a recent article directly supports his fears about who controls whom and it adds credence to the notion that government schools are not about education but about control.

Angela Lipsman, a 15-year-old gifted student, has earned her associateís degree and is working on her bachelorís degree, having by-passed high school. By the educratsí Byzantine rules, even though she is satisfactorily completing college course work, she cannot get a college diploma until she has a high school diploma. Her father is being investigated by the child-welfare Clerks for neglect because he did not send her to high school, and a judge has ruled that the state can force her back into high school until she is 16 and not give her a high school equivalency diploma until she is 17. Her father was quoted as saying "[Iíll] go to prison before my daughter goes to a city high school." Tell me, is this a state concerned with a childís education, or a state concerned with keeping the vassals in line. It certainly is not freedom.

A previous TRACKSIDE stated that federal law prevents the taxing of Internet sales. Not correct. Federal law contains a moratorium, expiring in November of this year, that prohibits states from charging Internet access fees. It does not specifically address taxes on Internet sales. Supreme Court decisions in the Bellas Hess and Quill cases are the legal barrier to Internet sales taxes.

For setting me straight, I have to thank State Senator Tim Huelskamp and Bob Corkins, Executive Director of the Kansas Policy Research Institute. Corkins wrote: "As more states implement SSTP, the Commerce Clause rationale (relied upon in Quill) precluding Internet sales tax becomes weaker: if vendors nationwide have a more uniformly difficult chore of administering sales tax, then there is no undue burden placed on interstate commerce; Congress would then be free to enact a national sales tax nexus definition that permits interstate enforcement of Internet sales tax. Obviously, the debate over the federal "access fee" moratorium opens the door to other possibilities -- including the next best chance for SSTP supporters to push for their preferred national nexus definition. [And a chance for opponents] to try inserting language preempting Internet sales taxes."

See you Trackside.


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