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Another Outbreak of Animal Cruelty

April 28, 2014 - 6:00pm

There's an old saying: When the horse dies, dismount.But despite the demise of a faithful old equine ridden by liberals for decades, the left refuses to stop flogging it unmercifully.

Everyone but the low-information voter and the liberal so committed that he is sorry to have missed the party at Jonestown knows that the old myth about throwing money at government schools to improve them is sheer wishful thinking, nurtured by liberal media propaganda.

Yet, the thrashings continue.

Recently, a former state legislator went back to the whip once more. In an op-ed published in several papers, Paula Dockery wrote, Limited education dollars should be used first and foremost in our public school classrooms.

Why? Because, she did not say, powerful teacher unions get a percentage of those paychecks and what does not go to the astronomical salaries of union bosses goes into the campaign war chests of liberal politicians, who always vote for more spending.

Dockery expanded her premise into a rant against voucher programs -- programs that are helping thousands of students escape failing government schools and get an education (programs she supported before she evolved).

They are a vital part of a three-part approach to school reform that has proven beneficial across the board. It is good for students, good for taxpayers, and good for government schools.

Liberals fight it every step of the way.

The current tactic is to try to burden private schools with red tape. They refer to this as accountability.

That's right. They fight accountability in the government schools but promote it for the private schools. They call the FCAT ineffective and demand that private schools use it.

Dockery says we need to focus on arming our teachers with the resources and flexibility. "Resources" is Libspeak for money that comes out of the household budgets of Florida families.

Limited? Only by the fear of a taxpayer revolt. Education is the largest item in the budget, at more than $18 billion. And she chose a particularly inopportune time to complain, with the Legislature increasing school spending this year by more than $1 billion.

What really riles liberals is the possibility that private schools might earn a profit. They might turn out nothing but future magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa key-wearing Rhodes Scholars but if school owners make a small return on their investment in the process liberals view them as evil incarnate.

Challenged by readers on her premise that spending money will improve public schools, Dockery would not or more likely could not back it up with any evidence. She certainly would not have cited this.

Nor would she or could she explain how boosting adult paychecks causes children to learn.

Couldn't the anti-reform crowd be a bit more humane, and bury that poor, old nag?

Lloyd Brown was in the newspaper business nearly 50 years, beginning as a copy boy and retiring as editorial page editor of the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville. After retirement he served as speech writer for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

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