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Barrack Obama is awesome. - Page 3

post #81 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You talk about discussing something on the merits which is what I have brought up and what you have dismissed.

Alright, Nick.

Let's see how this goes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You have not explained in any form or fashion how simply giving a religious school a voucher to educate a student is a religious endorsement.

Really?

I think that's being a little less-than-generous.

I explained before that "voucher programs are controversial here because they basically amount to a direct aid for religious institutions, which is unconstitutional. Zelman says vouchers are not direct aid because the government isn't directly funneling money into those schools. The parents have something of a "choice" of where to spend the money. But when all the factors that go into deciding where to spend the money lead to something like 90%+ of it going to religious schools, you're just kidding yourself that it isn't an unconstitutional direct aid. The end result is that we're subsidizing religious schools to deal with the problems we have in our public school districts. That isn't right."

"I don't think by just giving someone a "choice," regardless of how unequal those choices are, that it defeats the prohibition against direct aid. I wouldn't oppose vouchers from a constitutional perspective if the choices in the voucher program were more equal. The Zelman majority was just paying lip-service to the whole "choice" concept. For instance, in Zelman, something like 90% of students choosing a private school chose a religious private school. They could have chosen a secular private school but the voucher money wasn't nearly enough to cover that. But the Catholic Church heavily subsidizes education for the students of its schools. The voucher money neatly coincided with the tuition rate for these private religious schools. If they made the choices more equal by giving enough money for these poor students to actually afford choosing a private secular school, then I don't see as great a Constitutional problem. The students actually have a choice there"

To put those in better context for you, direct aid to religious institutions is prohibited. However, even if we characterize the vouchers in this case as "indirect aid," I still think it fails the primary effects prong for indirect aid cases elucidated in O'Connor's concurring opinion. For indirect aid to religious institutions to be constitutional, it has to be administered neutrally, which I won't dispute here, and it has to provide a genuine choice. The voucher program here does not provide a genuine choice for the reasons I talked about in the preceding paragraphs. Basically, it creates a funnel to religious schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

The court found for the program for this exact reason. You reject their decision because you reject the belief that a religious institution can act in a secular and neutral manner. You can't explain why this is so because there is no logical rationale. It is a straight up bias that you hold.

I'm not even contending that point, so I don't know why this an issue.
post #82 of 119
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

My intent-o-meter is broken. You'll have to tell me the tale.

I personally think it very sad that since the Obamas do not have a family dog, they make the youngest daughter act as a surrogate. Do they let her walk upright since she isn't allowed to sit up? Perhaps they will let her wear shoes now that it has been pointed out that she should be treated as a human.

Nick

I hope that was sarcasm.
post #83 of 119
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Northgate View Post

This country will NOT elect a black man as their president. Period.

That's funny. In opinion polling between Obama and the Republican Candidates versus Clinton and the Republican Candidates, Obama does better in ever match-up than Hilary does.

Barack Obama – 48% // John McCain – 48%
Barack Obama – 52% // Rudy Giualiani – 45%
Barack Obama – 54% // Mitt Romney – 41%
Barack Obama – 55% // Mike Huckabee – 40%

Hilary Clinton – 48% // John McCain – 50%
Hillary Clinton – 51% // Rudy Giuliani – 45%
Hillary Clinton – 54% // Mitt Romney – 43%
Hillary Clinton – 54% // Mike Huckabee – 44%

Obama has a lot more cross party appeal, and this is just one example:
http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/...ote/index.html

Looks like you may have to eat your words.
post #84 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShawnJ View Post

Alright, Nick.

Let's see how this goes.

Really?

I think that's being a little less-than-generous.

I think someday you will realize that we do not afford any authority and thus just saying it doesn't make it so. That is even more true in this instance where the authority has said it and you have rejected it. So I consider it very generous.

Quote:
I explained before that "voucher programs are controversial here because they basically amount to a direct aid for religious institutions, which is unconstitutional.

First this isn't an explanation. This is just an assertion by you. They don't "basically amount to direct aid" because the funds being given have a valid secular purpose. The court saw this and ruled accordingly. You haven't and have never explained in any form or fashion how giving someone money to educate a kid is advocating for or endorsing a particular religion.

So please feel free to explain this now. I am of the view that you can't and instead it shows your bias.

Quote:
elman says vouchers are not direct aid because the government isn't directly funneling money into those schools. The parents have something of a "choice" of where to spend the money. But when all the factors that go into deciding where to spend the money lead to something like 90%+ of it going to religious schools, you're just kidding yourself that it isn't an unconstitutional direct aid.

Perhaps you have to kid yourself that it is direct aid, but myself and the Supreme Court majority need no inducement to see this correctly.

Just for those keeping score, your "explanation" has amounted to assertions where you claim things are true because of explanations like "basically amount" and "kidding yourself."

The court also addressed the figures by noting that individual religious endorsement is not the same as government religious endorsement. If 90% of people who received a tax refund decided to donate it to various churches, a tax refund does not become a religious endorsement. There were any number of choices available, public, private, religious and secular, and they made their individual, not government choice to endorse.

You and the minority never address what amounts to your bias here. If the majority of people choose to be religious, that doesn't mean the government has forced or even endorsed them being so. You can be uncomfortable with it but you cannot PREVENT it. It is their right. The voucher program was undertaken in a completely neutral fashion. The vouchers were given with no religious language or endorsement. The criteria for picking a school was neutral as well. Finally the court found if anything there was a financial disincentive because the vouchers were half what the student would normally receive if they attended public schools.

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"I don't think by just giving someone a "choice," regardless of how unequal those choices are, that it defeats the prohibition against direct aid.

I don't think... basically amounts... kidding yourself... these are the phrases that amount to your "arguments" against the case. They are just your biases. The aid is for the purposes of providing education to poor children. That purpose is completely secular.

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I wouldn't oppose vouchers from a constitutional perspective if the choices in the voucher program were more equal.

That is a lie. You would oppose because the criteria is already neutral and equal. The results are not and the biased authoritarian in you cannot tolerate that. You've seriously had this problem for a while Shawn. You simply cannot believe that if they knew what you knew, they might not choose to do what you do. Everyone was presented with the same neutral criteria and yet they made a decision dramatically different than what you believe they would have made. Thus it must be wrong not because of something you've explained, but because you cannot believe they would make that decision.

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The Zelman majority was just paying lip-service to the whole "choice" concept. For instance, in Zelman, something like 90% of students choosing a private school chose a religious private school. They could have chosen a secular private school but the voucher money wasn't nearly enough to cover that. But the Catholic Church heavily subsidizes education for the students of its schools. The voucher money neatly coincided with the tuition rate for these private religious schools. If they made the choices more equal by giving enough money for these poor students to actually afford choosing a private secular school, then I don't see as great a Constitutional problem. The students actually have a choice there"

100% could have chosen a religious private school and that doesn't mean it is an endorsement of religion by the state. Your assertion about Catholic subsidization does not match anything I have read nor is it mentioned in the Souter opinion.

Now let's go ahead and concede it though and note that a school having an endowment is not a religious endorsement by the government. The court found that the fact the voucher was half of what was offered public schools was a financial incentive to choose public schools. You have to be profoundly biased to consider receiving double the money to attend a public school to be a religious endorsement.

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To put those in better context for you, direct aid to religious institutions is prohibited.

Everyone understands this.

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However, even if we characterize the vouchers in this case as "indirect aid," I still think it fails the primary effects prong for indirect aid cases elucidated in O'Connor's concurring opinion. For indirect aid to religious institutions to be constitutional, it has to be administered neutrally, which I won't dispute here, and it has to provide a genuine choice. The voucher program here does not provide a genuine choice for the reasons I talked about in the preceding paragraphs. Basically, it creates a funnel to religious schools.

The choices are not "genuine" because you don't like the percentages and because you don't like religion. The voucher program treats private, public, secular and religious the same. While I don't think I've ever heard of Catholic schools as being wealthy, you insure us that they are and have the means to subsidize the voucher cost. Ignoring for a second the fact that if anything the program creates a massive incentive to remain with public and secular school by doubling the value of the voucher, there is still nothing within the criteria that prevents a private secular institution from setting up an endowment to help every student who receives a voucher.

Now that said, seriously open your eyes here and think about what you are asserting. It is comical. You are contending that the government is failing to provide the true cost of the education of the child, that the church must thus subsidize it, and as a result the government is AIDING churches by forcing them to spend their own money to educate children since the government fails to provide this.

How is that endorsing religion again? It isn't. It is actually penalizing religion. If we took out the word church and instead substituted the phrase historical black college, your biases would shut off and you would call it what it is, a punishment for being that trait instead of an endorsement. If the "reward' for going to a historically black college was receiving half the money/voucher you would receive for going to another school you most certainly wouldn't call it preferential treatment an endorsement, or likely even aid.

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I'm not even contending that point, so I don't know why this an issue.

You are contending it in your refusal to see the results of individual choices using neutral criteria for what they plainly are. If the results are 90% choice for religious, even by secular parents and using neutral criteria then you cannot fathom the results. You refuse to see the institutions as serving a secular purpose which is why 90% would choose them in the first place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by icfireball View Post

I hope that was sarcasm.

Talk to BRussell about why he wants the two compared. On a SECOND humorous note, a few blogs that referenced the photo of Huckabee alleged that Mrs. Huckabee is choking the dog.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #85 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

Secular endeavors by religious organizations?

Plenty.

Nick

No. The question was are there any examples of taxpayer dollars being used to fund secular endeavours by religious organizations (e.g. Salvation Army). It's an honest question and gets right at the heart of any discussion about vouchers.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #86 of 119
Mid you'll have to define what you will accept as definitions here. I suspect it will be artificially tight in terms of acceptance.

Every government grant for research, every dollar of student financial aid and every government backed student load that goes to any university or college with a religious background (Notre Dame for example) meets the criteria.

I've also read of relief organizations getting grants from the government. However I can't honestly say I've read deeply or researched into that area.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #87 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

Mid you'll have to define what you will accept as definitions here. I suspect it will be artificially tight in terms of acceptance.

Every government grant for research, every dollar of student financial aid and every government backed student load that goes to any university or college with a religious background (Notre Dame for example) meets the criteria.

I've also read of relief organizations getting grants from the government. However I can't honestly say I've read deeply or researched into that area.

Nick

Nick,

Nah. It won't be particularly narrow. I'm just curious about what kinds of precedents are out there for taxpayer dollars being given to religious organizations. The problem with grants and loans and stuff for students/faculty is that that aid does not go to the school; it goes to the individual. Is a voucher the same thing? Is that aid directly to the parents? Or directly to the school?

And I'm being totally straight about all of this. If there are precedents for taxpayer dollars being used in ways similar to vouchers, it would seriously strengthen arguments for them.

But keep in mind my earlier point re: military spending. My opposition to this is largely that I don't like the idea that people can just opt out of the system.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #88 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Nick,

Nah. It won't be particularly narrow. I'm just curious about what kinds of precedents are out there for taxpayer dollars being given to religious organizations. The problem with grants and loans and stuff for students/faculty is that that aid does not go to the school; it goes to the individual. Is a voucher the same thing? Is that aid directly to the parents? Or directly to the school?

And I'm being totally straight about all of this. If there are precedents for taxpayer dollars being used in ways similar to vouchers, it would seriously strengthen arguments for them.

But keep in mind my earlier point re: military spending. My opposition to this is largely that I don't like the idea that people can just opt out of the system.

From my brief reading digging into this case, while considered a voucher system it was operated much like financial aid for higher education. Families applied for the program. Their income was considered as well and the were given the money to use as tuition assistance to attend a private school. It was called a scholarship within the oral arguments.

So I am being totally straight when I say that this is no different than how financial aid is received by every college student that applies for it across the entire nation.

I'm also interested in why you consider this to be opting out. I know you enjoy taking assumptions on the conservative side and ripping into the actual numbers but that can be done here as well. 10% of children already "opt out" via their parents paying for private school. Another 2% opt out via home schooling. I suppose we could say 25-50% opt out when they simply drop out in high school and choose nothing as opposed to choosing the public schools.

You briefly mentioned the military as an example, but the issue isn't just money, it is participation. You may note that you can't take your money and remove it from being spent on the military. However for the most part you are not compelled to participate in that military as well. The parents in this instance are not demanding the right to avoid paying taxes that end up being spent on education. They desire to have some say over how they must interact with those funds when compelled so under the force of law.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #89 of 119
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Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

Kennedy also started a host of programs that benifited us right up until today ( all kinds of education physical and otherwise etc. ).

No, not "etc." Such as? And physical education...yeah, that's done a lot for us. Kids are fatter and more out of shape than ever. The only reason he even started it was so we could be more fit than the Russians. Maybe he should have banned McDonald's instead.

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In a very short period of time he did more than most presidents do in 2 terms.

Do tell. I'm listening. I'll start you off: He cut taxes. Next?

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Hell! We would have never landed on the moon if it wasn't for him.

That's dubious. I agree he set the direction for that achievement and was a great communicator. Let's not say we never would have done it.

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He recognized forward thinking is needed to reform this country for a new era. He was anything but stay the course. He was also a brave president for his actions in the missle crisis and on the steps of that High School in Alabama when he ordered Wallace to let those kids attend.

Agreed. I never questioned any of those things.

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Also if you even start on Vietnam we've already been over that one. The indications are he wanted to pull out but his life getting cut short didn't allow him to. He was popular for bucking the system and it probably got him killed.

I haven't said anything about Vietnam. Feeling defensive?

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I've noted before Obama's attitude is similar. This really is the kind of thinking we need now. Not someone who'll just stay the course.

I agree his attitude is similar. It's the specifics or lack thereof I have a problem with.

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I'm going to go ahead and call you a dummy for this one SDW.

Yeah, how dare I point out that Kennedy was not God on Earth and a lot of the perception of him being a Great President was due to the nature of the media at the time, and the fact that he was unfortunately assassinated.
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post #90 of 119
Mike Gravel an angry old man? YOU'RE GODDAMN RIGHT. There is a LOT to be angry about. No one else is angry enough. I still pick him as #1 to be President. Nevertheless Biden is my next pick. I hope Biden at least gets VP or Sec. of State and fixes Iraq. He's our national mechanic. He'll fix it. Obama, meh, he's okay. So are all of them. Republicans want to substitute government services with more funding for nuclear missiles. I think if any Republicans won it would be so destructive to this nation and the world it would parallel Herbert Hoover's disaster of a Presidency and perhaps be worse. It would certainly lead to a second Depression and probably WW III. IMHO.
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post #91 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

From my brief reading digging into this case, while considered a voucher system it was operated much like financial aid for higher education. Families applied for the program. Their income was considered as well and the were given the money to use as tuition assistance to attend a private school. It was called a scholarship within the oral arguments.

So I am being totally straight when I say that this is no different than how financial aid is received by every college student that applies for it across the entire nation.

As I understand it, the primary difference here was that the voucher was given to the parents and not directly to the schools, as was the case in Lemon.

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I'm also interested in why you consider this to be opting out.

A variety of reasons. I'll detail below.

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10% of children already "opt out" via their parents paying for private school. Another 2% opt out via home schooling.

By "opt out," I mean that I don't like the idea that people can choose to take their funding out of a system that is not just about them. Certainly, I don't like the idea that, even with Zelman's success in the SC, that my tax dollars will be funding a kid taking a cathecism class at a Catholic school in Ohio.

And people are always free to choose private schools or homeschooling. I don't pay for that. I'd rather that didn't happen. I'd rather that people worked to make the public schools better.

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I suppose we could say 25-50% opt out when they simply drop out in high school and choose nothing as opposed to choosing the public schools.

My taxpyer dollars don't pay for that, directly, either. They may pay for it later in the form of crime, but they don't pay for them dropping out. I wish they wouldn't, though, which is why I'm spending lots of my time these days to trying to stop the ~50% of Latino males from dropping out at the 9th grade around here.

At any rate, thems not my tax dollars at work.

Quote:
You briefly mentioned the military as an example, but the issue isn't just money, it is participation. You may note that you can't take your money and remove it from being spent on the military. However for the most part you are not compelled to participate in that military as well. The parents in this instance are not demanding the right to avoid paying taxes that end up being spent on education. They desire to have some say over how they must interact with those funds when compelled so under the force of law.

I disagree. The parents in this case desire to pull their funding from the system. Obligated to participate or not, when they do that, they weaken the system. That's the issue. I can't get a "road voucher." I can't get a "public rest stop" voucher. I can't get a "state park voucher." I can't get a "post office voucher." I can't get a "solid waste collection voucher."

And that's why I've asked, upthread, for examples of public monies being used to fund secular endeavors by religious organizations. I can't think of any.

Why are schools any different?
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #92 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Certainly, I don't like the idea that, even with Zelman's success in the SC, that my tax dollars will be funding a kid taking a cathecism class at a Catholic school in Ohio...My taxpyer dollars don't pay for that, directly, either...At any rate, thems not my tax dollars at work.

The clear underlying theme of your position is that you want a say over how "your" tax dollars are used. Is that right? Do you agree that most everyone else likely feels exactly the same way? Do you recognize that therein lies the central conflict?

You feel ownership over the money "transfered" (taken) from your pocket to the government. You want a say over the way it's used. At the same time you seem to expect others to give up their "ownership" and say over how it is used.

This hypocrisy is so obvious, it is surprising that you cannot see it.

There is a simple solution to all of this, but you think it sounds "unpatriotic" (which isn't a very compelling argument against the solution by the way).
post #93 of 119
Yeah. I'm not so sure that's the argument you want to make, since it suggests that everyone's a hypocrite, doesn't it? Don't want your tax dollars to go to kids in public schools? Hypocrite! Don't want your tax dollars to go to kids in private schools? Hypocrite!

It's a win-win!

Or a lose-lose.

Take your pick.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #94 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

By "opt out," I mean that I don't like the idea that people can choose to take their funding out of a system that is not just about them. Certainly, I don't like the idea that, even with Zelman's success in the SC, that my tax dollars will be funding a kid taking a cathecism class at a Catholic school in Ohio.

Well do you hate the cathecism class enough to have the child attend a school that utterly fails them and likely sentences them to a life of poverty instead?

I mean that it the big BUT... here that is never addressed by the voucher opponents and I don't mean that as a swipe against you because Souter notes the same thing in his minority opinion. It basically boils down to if you hate cathecism enough to sentence a kid to a lack of education/

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And people are always free to choose private schools or homeschooling. I don't pay for that. I'd rather that didn't happen. I'd rather that people worked to make the public schools better.

We the point is that they really aren't free to choose them when the government takes so much for public it creates a monopoly. This is sort of the education version of the Social Security problem. SS started as a 1% tax. If people wanted to save for themselves or still find someway of going outside the system at that stage, it was possible. At 13+% the same argument about opting out can no longer be made.

Public schools are generally paid for now with property taxes and local taxes with what used to be a purely local matter. A number of cases, generally under the auspices of equalizing school spending, have taken local control of this matter and transferred it to the state level which in turn must deal with federal mandates as well.

So before you did have some say. You could take action locally. Now you must deal with three entities and lobby them to have some sort of effect. Additionally we haven't underfunded the schools, we are tied for first on the planet for funds provided. In short, it isn't really a choice when they've taken every available dollar at the local, state and federal level, created a monopoly and your possibility of influencing that massive bureaucracy is roughly zero.

Also we can see the distortion when we look at what government is spending, or rather sinking into the massive failure hole. The cost of most private schools, is usually half of what is spent on government schools. This means the government is charging 200% of what the market is chargins and then failing on top of it. However when you are forced under compulsion of law to pay that 200% extortion fee, you don't have a choice to exercise.

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My taxpyer dollars don't pay for that, directly, either. They may pay for it later in the form of crime, but they don't pay for them dropping out. I wish they wouldn't, though, which is why I'm spending lots of my time these days to trying to stop the ~50% of Latino males from dropping out at the 9th grade around here.

At any rate, thems not my tax dollars at work.

Actually they are your tax dollars at work. The lack of productivity and hence income from these undereducated individuals is made up by you with a more progressive tax system. It is also paid for by you with transfer payments via section 8, food stamps, general relief, etc. Finally you presume the crimes take place further down the line. We haven't had the phrase "tried as an adult" enter or lexicon for no reason. It is because this group acts on their lack of employability via their skill set almost immediately.

However your initial proposition amounts to pay now or pay later... so no matter what, you do pay and thus it is your tax dollars at work.

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I disagree. The parents in this case desire to pull their funding from the system. Obligated to participate or not, when they do that, they weaken the system. That's the issue. I can't get a "road voucher." I can't get a "public rest stop" voucher. I can't get a "state park voucher." I can't get a "post office voucher." I can't get a "solid waste collection voucher."

How many of those services are you compelled to engage in under threat of law? If you drive past the rest stop do you receive a summons to appear in court? This is why I noted the difference between being forced to pay and being forced to participate. No one is going to prosecute you for not using the state parks this year.

I suppose the closest example is solid wast collection and while I am not a property lawyer, I do know that most folks lose the water rights to their property when they are developed by whoever built the house on it. The developer typically signs them away to the local water district. If you owned a large piece of land that was not developed by someone else and retained the water rights on it, they typically could not force you to give them up, ie go off septic and refuse you the right to drill a well. On my property for example, someone bought the properties, developed them and gave up the water rights in exchange for being allowed to tie into the city water and sewer system. For me to now assert the right to go off those systems would mean demanding property rights I never purchased in the first place.

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And that's why I've asked, upthread, for examples of public monies being used to fund secular endeavors by religious organizations. I can't think of any.

Why are schools any different?

Schools are different for a couple reasons. First most of the other services are not controlled in a three prong manner of local, state and federal as noted above. Secondly other services perform at or near market rates for the services provided, if they don't heads roll pretty quickly. Finally again, you are not compelled under threat of law to participate with your physical person in them.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #95 of 119
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Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Yeah. I'm not so sure that's the argument you want to make, since it suggests that everyone's a hypocrite, doesn't it? Don't want your tax dollars to go to kids in public schools? Hypocrite! Don't want your tax dollars to go to kids in private schools? Hypocrite!

It's a win-win!

Or a lose-lose.

Take your pick.

The hypocrisy, as I see it, comes from the apparent fact that you wish to have a say over how "your" tax dollars are used, but that others should not have the same say. Or that them having a say is fine so long as what the choose to do with it agrees with your choices and values.

But maybe it really isn't hypocrisy as much as profound presumptuousness in that you assume it is your tax dollars in play here and not their tax dollars. By the way, I thought it wasn't your money or my money or their money anymore anyway, but the government's money.

In any case, there really is a simple solution to all of this. You get your money back, I get mine, they get theirs and we all decide individually and separately how that money is to be used. Other than being "unpatriotic" what is wrong with that solution?
post #96 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

Is that what you call it, evidence? They are facts in isolation. We have no falsifiable theory that shows we have the ability to predict the weather fifty or one hundred years into the future.

Nick

Oh god! If someone tried to tell you not to stick your hand in a running lawnmower you'd say " well you have no way of knowing that it would cut it off unless I actually do it "!

While you're pondering the obvious the earth keeps going to hell!

Oh well!
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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post #97 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

No, not "etc." Such as? And physical education...yeah, that's done a lot for us. Kids are fatter and more out of shape than ever. The only reason he even started it was so we could be more fit than the Russians. Maybe he should have banned McDonald's instead.



Do tell. I'm listening. I'll start you off: He cut taxes. Next?



That's dubious. I agree he set the direction for that achievement and was a great communicator. Let's not say we never would have done it.



Agreed. I never questioned any of those things.



I haven't said anything about Vietnam. Feeling defensive?



I agree his attitude is similar. It's the specifics or lack thereof I have a problem with.



Yeah, how dare I point out that Kennedy was not God on Earth and a lot of the perception of him being a Great President™ was due to the nature of the media at the time, and the fact that he was unfortunately assassinated.

Since you weren't actually alive at the time why don't you try reading a history book and find out. By the way it had nothing to do with the media hype at the time. It was his actions ( and to be fair age ) that caused the media hype. After years of not much change he shook things up and it made alot of people in power angry. But he did what was necessary to shake off the WWII, 1rst half of the century way of thinking which was no longer valid for the times. We could go into these things but I'm sure you can read.

This is the type of change we need now.

" I haven't said anything about Vietnam. Feeling defensive? "

I was feeling preemptive.

" Kids are fatter and more out of shape than ever. "

Yes we need desperately to return to that. However there would be a lot of middle aged people now in worse shape if not for him.

" The only reason he even started it was so we could be more fit than the Russians. "

Uh no.

" Maybe he should have banned McDonald's instead. "

I might agree with this.
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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post #98 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

Well do you hate the cathecism class enough to have the child attend a school that utterly fails them and likely sentences them to a life of poverty instead?

I mean that it the big BUT... here that is never addressed by the voucher opponents and I don't mean that as a swipe against you because Souter notes the same thing in his minority opinion. It basically boils down to if you hate cathecism enough to sentence a kid to a lack of education/

That's a beautiful false choice there, Nick! Very smoothly done. It's not about how much I hate the catechism class vs the cute baby schoolboy! It's about how much I hate the baby Jesus versis the cute baby schoolboy!

Er, I mean, how much I love the US Constitution versus the cute baby schoolboy.

If the system doesn't work, fix it. I don't understand all this whinging.

Quote:
Additionally we haven't underfunded the schools, we are tied for first on the planet for funds provided. In short, it isn't really a choice when they've taken every available dollar at the local, state and federal level, created a monopoly and your possibility of influencing that massive bureaucracy is roughly zero.

You know as well as I do that you can't simply say "We spend as much per-pupil as France." Because of the way education is funded, as you just explained in some detail, funding varies considerably from state to state. Mississippi, for instance, spends a third what the top states spend.

Quote:
How many of those services are you compelled to engage in under threat of law? If you drive past the rest stop do you receive a summons to appear in court? This is why I noted the difference between being forced to pay and being forced to participate. No one is going to prosecute you for not using the state parks this year.

If you pull your kids out of public school and homeschool him, do you get prosecuted? Participation is a red herring, Nick. It's not about participation. It's about how taking tax dollars out of the system weakens the whole.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #99 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by sslarson View Post

The hypocrisy, as I see it, comes from the apparent fact that you wish to have a say over how "your" tax dollars are used, but that others should not have the same say. Or that them having a say is fine so long as what the choose to do with it agrees with your choices and values.

But maybe it really isn't hypocrisy as much as profound presumptuousness in that you assume it is your tax dollars in play here and not their tax dollars. By the way, I thought it wasn't your money or my money or their money anymore anyway, but the government's money.

I don't believe I said anywhere that people couldn't change the rules and keep their money. I don't believe I said anywhere that people couldn't go stuff their paychecks in a mattress and fortify their houses with tanks and trenches.

But you don't seem to get that you can't attack me for being a hypocrite or presumptuous without including your own argument in there, as well. And since my argument is about the social contract and yours is about individual desires, wanna guess which one takes the prize?

Quote:
In any case, there really is a simple solution to all of this. You get your money back, I get mine, they get theirs and we all decide individually and separately how that money is to be used. Other than being "unpatriotic" what is wrong with that solution?

It is really, really unpatriotic? Also, the folks in MS don't have enough money to feed themselves and need some of your money. The folks in NOLA don't have enough money to recover from Katrina and need your help. The folks in OK last week will spend a year recovering from thsi ice storm and need your help. Folks in California might experience an earthquake. Folks in NYC might have a major terrorist attack. Folks in Utah have too many kids to afford to clothe them all.

It's unpatriotic, sslarsen, because we are a nation governed by a social contract, not some heap of disparate tribes all out to accumulate the most stuff.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #100 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

I don't believe I said anywhere that people couldn't change the rules and keep their money. I don't believe I said anywhere that people couldn't go stuff their paychecks in a mattress and fortify their houses with tanks and trenches.

I am pretty sure that taxation is not a voluntary situation so, unless I want to go to jail, I cannot really do those things.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

But you don't seem to get that you can't attack me for being a hypocrite or presumptuous without including your own argument in there, as well.

I don't see how that is at all. My argument is that the best way to deal with you controlling how your money is spent is for you to get it back and decide for yourself, and the same for everyone else. But you don't seem very keen on that idea because it appears that you not only want to control how your money is spent but also everyone else's.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

And since my argument is about the social contract and yours is about individual desires, wanna guess which one takes the prize?

First of all you are layering your individual desires upon the choices being made with "your" tax dollars. You have stated that very clearly several times.

Secondly, what I'm talking about is a simple solution that gets away from the inherent conflict that is exposed by your statements about what you want (or don't want) to be done with "your" tax dollars vs. what I want (or don't want) to be done with "my" tax dollars. Let's just get the middle man (government) out of the equation and each decide on our own. No one would prevent you from donating time, money and other resources to those who you see to be in need of it. No one would prevent you from trying to convince others to do the same. No one would even prevent you from putting conditions on your charity (e.g., it cannot be used for a Catholic school).

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

It is really, really unpatriotic?

Are you asking a question or making a statement?

In any case, adding the "really, really" doesn't make the argument any more convincing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Also, the folks in MS don't have enough money to feed themselves and need some of your money. The folks in NOLA don't have enough money to recover from Katrina and need your help. The folks in OK last week will spend a year recovering from thsi ice storm and need your help. Folks in California might experience an earthquake. Folks in NYC might have a major terrorist attack. Folks in Utah have too many kids to afford to clothe them all.

First, I thought we were talking about schools but now you have changed the subject to food, clothing, shelter, etc. Regardless, I (and many others I suspect) would be very likely to voluntarily provide assistance. It doesn't need to be taken from me by force.
post #101 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

That's a beautiful false choice there, Nick! Very smoothly done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

It's unpatriotic, sslarsen, because we are a nation governed by a social contract, not some heap of disparate tribes all out to accumulate the most stuff.

I just had to set those two statements side by side to see if anyone else notices the irony in them.

Not to mention the implied false choice here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Also, the folks in MS don't have enough money to feed themselves and need some of your money. The folks in NOLA don't have enough money to recover from Katrina and need your help. The folks in OK last week will spend a year recovering from thsi ice storm and need your help. Folks in California might experience an earthquake. Folks in NYC might have a major terrorist attack. Folks in Utah have too many kids to afford to clothe them all.
post #102 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by sslarson View Post

I don't see how that is at all. My argument is that the best way to deal with you controlling how your money is spent is for you to get it back and decide for yourself, and the same for everyone else. But you don't seem very keen on that idea because it appears that you not only want to control how your money is spent but also everyone else's.

Let's try this again: who do you think you are to decide for others how they should best deal with their money?

Quote:
First, I thought we were talking about schools but now you have changed the subject to food, clothing, shelter, etc. Regardless, I (and many others I suspect) would be very likely to voluntarily provide assistance. It doesn't need to be taken from me by force.

That's admirable. Congratulations. But I'll bet there's lots of stuff that other people think is mightily important that you wouldn't be willing to pay for. Who do you think you are to determine what desperately needed services people in less populated states like Oklahoma or Idaho get to have?
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #103 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Let's try this again: who do you think you are to decide for others how they should best deal with their money?

How are you getting that from what I have said? I'm saying exactly the opposite! I'm saying that I don't really have any right whatsoever to say how they should deal with their money and that the best way to deal with that position is to let people have their money and spend it as they see fit themselves. You appear to be the one that has the perspective that I (and others) won't deal with our money "correctly" (according to your values) and therefore the money should be taken from those who won't deal with it correctly and use the money in the "right" way.
post #104 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by sslarson View Post

I'm saying exactly the opposite! I'm saying that I don't really have any right whatsoever to say how they should deal with their money

But you are. Watch:

Quote:
the best way to deal with that position is to let people have their money and spend it as they see fit themselves.

Are you not, right there, saying how people should deal with their money? What I'm saying is pretty simple. Government takes up money and distributes it to people, services, and institutions that need it. You don't like that. When you want to opt out of that system, you want to shirk your patriotic duty. And not only that, you want to take money away from, say, a tiny school in Bessemer, Alabama or Kiln, MS or that doesn't make enough in property taxes to support a school of any kind and the folks who live there for generations don't have the skills or the time to homeschool. What is wrong with you?! You're like those people who listen to NPR every day but don't contribute to the fundraisers!

Quote:
You appear to be the one that has the perspective that I (and others) won't deal with our money "correctly" (according to your values) and therefore the money should be taken from those who won't deal with it correctly and use the money in the "right" way.

You seem to be obsessed with trying to suss out my motives. NICK! NICK!! HE'S TALKING ABOUT INTENT!
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #105 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by icfireball View Post

That's funny. In opinion polling between Obama and the Republican Candidates versus Clinton and the Republican Candidates, Obama does better in ever match-up than Hilary does.

Barack Obama 48% // John McCain 48%
Barack Obama 52% // Rudy Giualiani 45%
Barack Obama 54% // Mitt Romney 41%
Barack Obama 55% // Mike Huckabee 40%

Hilary Clinton 48% // John McCain 50%
Hillary Clinton 51% // Rudy Giuliani 45%
Hillary Clinton 54% // Mitt Romney 43%
Hillary Clinton 54% // Mike Huckabee 44%

Obama has a lot more cross party appeal, and this is just one example:
http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/...ote/index.html

Looks like you may have to eat your words.

Well, sure. If I were a racist bigot deep down inside but didn't want people to know I was (because it's uncool and all) -- and someone ringed my house and asked me poll questions, I wouldn't answer in such a way as to reveal the true nature of my hand.

But the lever I choose to pull in complete privacy and secrecy is another thing altogether.

And trust me. I'm a liberal Democrat. I wish this nasty fact about humanity wasn't true. But I believe it is. I hope I'm wrong. I'm speaking only from gut instinct.
"The selfishness of Ayn Rand capitalism is the equivalent of intellectual masturbation -- satisfying in an ego-stroking way, but an ethical void when it comes to our commonly shared humanity."
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"The selfishness of Ayn Rand capitalism is the equivalent of intellectual masturbation -- satisfying in an ego-stroking way, but an ethical void when it comes to our commonly shared humanity."
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post #106 of 119
BTW, is this an Obama thread?

Or is it a school voucher thread?

Or is it a taxation thread?

I can't tell.
"The selfishness of Ayn Rand capitalism is the equivalent of intellectual masturbation -- satisfying in an ego-stroking way, but an ethical void when it comes to our commonly shared humanity."
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"The selfishness of Ayn Rand capitalism is the equivalent of intellectual masturbation -- satisfying in an ego-stroking way, but an ethical void when it comes to our commonly shared humanity."
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post #107 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Are you not, right there, saying how people should deal with their money?

This must be some kind of Orwellian twist where you have taken my suggestion that people not have money forcibly taken from them but instead are allowed to keep it and decide for themselves how it is to be used is the same thing as me (or you) deciding how they should use their money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

You seem to be obsessed with trying to suss out my motives. NICK! NICK!! HE'S TALKING ABOUT INTENT!

No. I'm dealing with the words you've written which just happen to pretty transparently reveal your motives.
post #108 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Northgate View Post

BTW, is this an Obama thread?

Or is it a school voucher thread?

Or is it a taxation thread?

I can't tell.

Similar to the "Theory of Everything", maybe this is the "Thread of Everything."

post #109 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

That's a beautiful false choice there, Nick! Very smoothly done. It's not about how much I hate the catechism class vs the cute baby schoolboy! It's about how much I hate the baby Jesus versis the cute baby schoolboy!

Er, I mean, how much I love the US Constitution versus the cute baby schoolboy.

If the system doesn't work, fix it. I don't understand all this whinging.

You seem to forget that the system can refuse to fix itself or resist improvement by outsiders. The system can seek its own interests and ignore the the interests of those it is supposed to service.

Best/worst of all, it can do this using all the money you have in your pocket since you pay for it. Under circumstances such as that, most people would choose to forgo the public version of the service and privatize it in some fashion. We can do this in many areas, but because of the three pronged nature of educational funding, we cannot here. If your city decides to privatize trash collection, it doesn't become a state and federal civil rights lawsuit.

Quote:
You know as well as I do that you can't simply say "We spend as much per-pupil as France." Because of the way education is funded, as you just explained in some detail, funding varies considerably from state to state. Mississippi, for instance, spends a third what the top states spend.

I can say it in areas like Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C. where per capita spending is higher than Mississippi and the result is just as bad or worse.

Quote:
If you pull your kids out of public school and homeschool him, do you get prosecuted? Participation is a red herring, Nick. It's not about participation. It's about how taking tax dollars out of the system weakens the whole.

Actually there are times where you do get prosecuted. If you were to go to any forums or boards that deal with such matters you can regularly hear of stories where certain districts magically keep losing paperwork and accidentally keep prosecuting parents for not sending their children to school. It may not exist everywhere but it certainly does exist.

Also you declare that taking tax dollars out weakens the system, but that is why in the cases such as this one, they do not make the scholarship a dollar for dollar deduction. Instead they have made it 50% of what would have been paid. The child gets the education they want and the school system itself is actually left with MORE money per capita to address the needs of the remaining children. It does not weaken the system as a whole at all. The nature of most of these inner-city schools is such that they are already running at 25% or more overcapacity. They typically are schools that might service a thousand students who instead are servicing 1300 on a year-round calendar. In such a scenario as that students being educated at another site and allowing the district to retain a percentage of the money to still improve itself with is the best scenario I can imagine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Northgate View Post

Well, sure. If I were a racist bigot deep down inside but didn't want people to know I was (because it's uncool and all) -- and someone ringed my house and asked me poll questions, I wouldn't answer in such a way as to reveal the true nature of my hand.

But the lever I choose to pull in complete privacy and secrecy is another thing altogether.

And trust me. I'm a liberal Democrat. I wish this nasty fact about humanity wasn't true. But I believe it is. I hope I'm wrong. I'm speaking only from gut instinct.

Why do you dismiss real data for some fantasy in your head? If the world presents itself as less racist, sexist and any other ism you care to conjure up, it is ridiculous for you to ignore the actions and reality, and substitute the intents you believe are there instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Northgate View Post

BTW, is this an Obama thread?

Or is it a school voucher thread?

Or is it a taxation thread?

I can't tell.

Clearly we let it get off topic because everyone who has participated in it, including yourself is secretly racist and hates Obama, thus we must have changed subconsciously changed the topic.

I'm sure that isn't the reality of what has happened, but you've proven it is more fun to ignore reality and fit everything to the preconceived narrative in your head.

I'll say it is in BRussell's head as well since he posted the two pictures and desire for us to infer a "tale" without being willing to state what that was. You being less subtle are more than willing to clarify it at the top of your lungs.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #110 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You seem to forget that the system can refuse to fix itself or resist improvement by outsiders. The system can seek its own interests and ignore the the interests of those it is supposed to service.

Ah! Well, then. I would argue that a system that is truly broken will want fixing. Does this suggest that the system ain't as broken as we (myself included) like to believe?

Quote:
I can say it in areas like Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C. where per capita spending is higher than Mississippi and the result is just as bad or worse.

"just as bad" as what?

Quote:
Actually there are times where you do get prosecuted. If you were to go to any forums or boards that deal with such matters you can regularly hear of stories where certain districts magically keep losing paperwork and accidentally keep prosecuting parents for not sending their children to school. It may not exist everywhere but it certainly does exist.

As my social science friends are so fond of saying "N OF 1!! N OF 1!!!"

Quote:
Also you declare that taking tax dollars out weakens the system, but that is why in the cases such as this one, they do not make the scholarship a dollar for dollar deduction. Instead they have made it 50% of what would have been paid. The child gets the education they want and the school system itself is actually left with MORE money per capita to address the needs of the remaining children. It does not weaken the system as a whole at all. The nature of most of these inner-city schools is such that they are already running at 25% or more overcapacity. They typically are schools that might service a thousand students who instead are servicing 1300 on a year-round calendar. In such a scenario as that students being educated at another site and allowing the district to retain a percentage of the money to still improve itself with is the best scenario I can imagine.

Well, you'll no doubt note that I've not really commented on the specifics of Zelman, which seems the most reasonable of voucher systems I've read about.

The more obvious solution to this is to build more schools and hire more teachers and train them up gooder. But then, I'm a nut about public education and think its existence in so many of these inner-city and rural areas is appalling.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #111 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by sslarson View Post

This must be some kind of Orwellian twist where you have taken my suggestion that people not have money forcibly taken from them but instead are allowed to keep it and decide for themselves how it is to be used is the same thing as me (or you) deciding how they should use their money.

That is precisely what it is. Except no one is forcing you, no matter how much thinking it may give you some sense of moral superiority in this discussion. No one is showing up at your door with a gun demanding payment right then and there. That's not what's happening. Every year, you enjoy roads and running water and school systems and national defense and all kinds of other stuff. You have to pay for it. You don't wanna. Them's the dues, man. Don't like it? Nobody's forcing you to be in the club. You are completely free to go somewhere else.

Quote:
No. I'm dealing with the words you've written which just happen to pretty transparently reveal your motives.

NICK! NICK!!! HE'S TALKING ABOUT MOTIVES AGAIN!!!
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #112 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You seem to forget that the system can refuse to fix itself or resist improvement by outsiders. The system can seek its own interests and ignore the the interests of those it is supposed to service.

Best/worst of all, it can do this using all the money you have in your pocket since you pay for it. Under circumstances such as that, most people would choose to forgo the public version of the service and privatize it in some fashion. We can do this in many areas, but because of the three pronged nature of educational funding, we cannot here. If your city decides to privatize trash collection, it doesn't become a state and federal civil rights lawsuit.



I can say it in areas like Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C. where per capita spending is higher than Mississippi and the result is just as bad or worse.



Actually there are times where you do get prosecuted. If you were to go to any forums or boards that deal with such matters you can regularly hear of stories where certain districts magically keep losing paperwork and accidentally keep prosecuting parents for not sending their children to school. It may not exist everywhere but it certainly does exist.

Also you declare that taking tax dollars out weakens the system, but that is why in the cases such as this one, they do not make the scholarship a dollar for dollar deduction. Instead they have made it 50% of what would have been paid. The child gets the education they want and the school system itself is actually left with MORE money per capita to address the needs of the remaining children. It does not weaken the system as a whole at all. The nature of most of these inner-city schools is such that they are already running at 25% or more overcapacity. They typically are schools that might service a thousand students who instead are servicing 1300 on a year-round calendar. In such a scenario as that students being educated at another site and allowing the district to retain a percentage of the money to still improve itself with is the best scenario I can imagine.



Why do you dismiss real data for some fantasy in your head? If the world presents itself as less racist, sexist and any other ism you care to conjure up, it is ridiculous for you to ignore the actions and reality, and substitute the intents you believe are there instead.



Clearly we let it get off topic because everyone who has participated in it, including yourself is secretly racist and hates Obama, thus we must have changed subconsciously changed the topic.

I'm sure that isn't the reality of what has happened, but you've proven it is more fun to ignore reality and fit everything to the preconceived narrative in your head.

I'll say it is in BRussell's head as well since he posted the two pictures and desire for us to infer a "tale" without being willing to state what that was. You being less subtle are more than willing to clarify it at the top of your lungs.

Nick

Jesus you're full of yourself. Wow.
"The selfishness of Ayn Rand capitalism is the equivalent of intellectual masturbation -- satisfying in an ego-stroking way, but an ethical void when it comes to our commonly shared humanity."
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post #113 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

Oh god! If someone tried to tell you not to stick your hand in a running lawnmower you'd say " well you have no way of knowing that it would cut it off unless I actually do it "!

While you're pondering the obvious the earth keeps going to hell!

Oh well!

Actually we can prove that and if don't think we can, then you don't know the scientific method.

I'll tell you what, I'll arrange for a lawnmower and some pig carcasses. You find the weather model that say.. has accurately predicted the number of hurricans the last few years and we can compare notes.

I... um... left my notes under the lawnmower though... so... uh... you'll have to reach under there and get them for me. They say you're right so be quick about it.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #114 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by midwinter View Post

Ah! Well, then. I would argue that a system that is truly broken will want fixing. Does this suggest that the system ain't as broken as we (myself included) like to believe?.

It would want fixing if the objective of the participants in it happen to match up to the service it is supposed to provide. One area that is very strange with regard to public education is those who failed to provide good service are often placed in charge of determining the next course of action. Their solutions reflect the same desires of the system not to change and as such, the solution is seldom one that brings about any change.

Quote:
"just as bad" as what?

As states where the spending per capita is below the national average.

Quote:
As my social science friends are so fond of saying "N OF 1!! N OF 1!!!"

I'm not attempting to use the exception to prove the rule is that is what the saying is supposed to suggest. Since a little less than 2% of students are home schooled, you only have a few examples per district to consider in the first place. When those few examples are treated in a common manner it still forms a trend.

Quote:
Well, you'll no doubt note that I've not really commented on the specifics of Zelman, which seems the most reasonable of voucher systems I've read about.

The more obvious solution to this is to build more schools and hire more teachers and train them up gooder. But then, I'm a nut about public education and think its existence in so many of these inner-city and rural areas is appalling.

That would be the best solution and have no doubt agree with you. However the failure of the government to do this does not mean the children and parents are compelled to suffer. Think of vouchers as the smallest and most agreeable form of civil damages government can pay for failure to provide a service by those who have the right to it.

The school I worked at in Los Angeles was a five acre campus originally meant for three hundred students. When I left, they were petitioning the state for the first two story portable classrooms in an attempt to fit the 1200 students that were being serviced there. Many of their older brothers and sisters were being bussed to schools one to two hours away where there was space. The districts had received funds and failed to deliver service. Review after review found the district to be incredibly top heavy with regard to administration but left to solve the problem themselves, they simply thought up new organizational groups, new titles and kept their old jobs. Districts became mini-districts, then clusters, then centers, etc. The acronyms changed and the kids suffered the same.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #115 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by e1618978 View Post

That would be fine for me, but pretty crap for poor people. In fact, pretty crap for me since I started out as a poor person in public school.

And look at you now, you turned out just fine! Why, you even have a Mac!

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

 

Get the lowdown on the coming collapse:  http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45010

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

 

Get the lowdown on the coming collapse:  http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45010

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post #116 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

First this isn't an explanation. This is just an assertion by you. They don't "basically amount to direct aid" because the funds being given have a valid secular purpose. The court saw this and ruled accordingly. You haven't and have never explained in any form or fashion how giving someone money to educate a kid is advocating for or endorsing a particular religion.

So please feel free to explain this now. I am of the view that you can't and instead it shows your bias.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

I don't think... basically amounts... kidding yourself... these are the phrases that amount to your "arguments" against the case. They are just your biases. The aid is for the purposes of providing education to poor children. That purpose is completely secular.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You are contending it in your refusal to see the results of individual choices using neutral criteria for what they plainly are. If the results are 90% choice for religious, even by secular parents and using neutral criteria then you cannot fathom the results. You refuse to see the institutions as serving a secular purpose which is why 90% would choose them in the first place.

Really?

Well, Nick, as I'm sure you know, whether something was enacted with a secular purpose is just one prong of a three prong test for whether something violates the Establishment Clause. Of course you know this. I don't doubt for a second you don't. But you're treating "valid secular purpose" as if it's dispositive. It's not. So I'm unclear how something having a valid secular purpose alone can defeat the prohibition against direct aid in constituting an endorsement of religion. Why would I only have to prove that the funds don't have a valid secular purpose? I've never contested this conclusion.

But the other two, my friend?

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

The court also addressed the figures by noting that individual religious endorsement is not the same as government religious endorsement. If 90% of people who received a tax refund decided to donate it to various churches, a tax refund does not become a religious endorsement. There were any number of choices available, public, private, religious and secular, and they made their individual, not government choice to endorse.

If it was just a tax refund and that's it-- no other limitations-- yet 90% of the people donated the refund to churches, then yes, that's not going to pose any problems. That's just pure individual choice. There's nothing that funnels it to the religious organizations. However that example is not like the vouchers in Zelman, where if the students were to transfer, the vouchers only covered the cost of religious private school education. If it covered the cost of the more expensive secular private school education as well, there would be less of a funnel to the religious schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

You and the minority never address what amounts to your bias here.

You've read Souter's 32 page dissent? Or the others?



Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

If the majority of people choose to be religious, that doesn't mean the government has forced or even endorsed them being so. You can be uncomfortable with it but you cannot PREVENT it. It is their right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

100% could have chosen a religious private school and that doesn't mean it is an endorsement of religion by the state.

You are vastly oversimplifying and mis-"reading" the opinion.

The majority said this plan does not create a funnel of government money to religious organizations; not that funnels are constitutional.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

That is a lie. You would oppose because the criteria is already neutral and equal. The results are not and the biased authoritarian in you cannot tolerate that. You've seriously had this problem for a while Shawn. You simply cannot believe that if they knew what you knew, they might not choose to do what you do. Everyone was presented with the same neutral criteria and yet they made a decision dramatically different than what you believe they would have made. Thus it must be wrong not because of something you've explained, but because you cannot believe they would make that decision.

Agreeing with something constitutionally is not always a proxy for a person's normative beliefs or policy positions. I would see less of a constitutional problem with this voucher program if there were more equal choices, but I would still oppose it on policy grounds. I hardly see how that's so unbelievable a position. Furthermore, I hardly think you're qualified to talk about my opinions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

Finally the court found if anything there was a financial disincentive because the vouchers were half what the student would normally receive if they attended public schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

The court found that the fact the voucher was half of what was offered public schools was a financial incentive to choose public schools. You have to be profoundly biased to consider receiving double the money to attend a public school to be a religious endorsement.

You need money to attend a public school?

Students did get money for "tutorial aid" for public school, but I think the state just threw that in there to pad the statistics. I think the proper comparison is what the money is being spent on outside the school district.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

The choices are not "genuine" because you don't like the percentages and because you don't like religion. The voucher program treats private, public, secular and religious the same. While I don't think I've ever heard of Catholic schools as being wealthy, you insure us that they are and have the means to subsidize the voucher cost.

Welcome to Nick's fabulously wonderful world of making things up.

Nowhere have I said Catholic schools are "wealthy" or that the schools "subsidize the voucher cost." I said, and I will repeat again, that that Catholic Church subsidizes tuition for its school students. This is irrefutable. My point was that religious private schools were cheaper than secular private schools as a result of the Church's subsidy to the schools. Because the voucher amount neatly coincided with the tuition rate for religious private schools, 90% of transferring students chose those religious private schools instead of the secular private schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

there is still nothing within the criteria that prevents a private secular institution from setting up an endowment to help every student who receives a voucher.

But they didn't.

If they did do that, then we would see more equal choices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

(1) You are contending that the government is failing to provide the true cost of the education of the child, (2) that the church must thus subsidize it, and (3) as a result the government is AIDING churches by forcing them to spend their own money to educate children since the government fails to provide this.

1. For secular private schools, absolutely.

2. The Church does subsidize the cost of education. My thoughts on this point are above.

3. You cannot get around the prohibition of direct aid by claiming taxes are really your money. That's not the way things work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

How is that endorsing religion again? It isn't. It is actually penalizing religion. If we took out the word church and instead substituted the phrase historical black college, your biases would shut off and you would call it what it is, a punishment for being that trait instead of an endorsement. If the "reward' for going to a historically black college was receiving half the money/voucher you would receive for going to another school you most certainly wouldn't call it preferential treatment an endorsement, or likely even aid.



We are talking about the Establishment Clause, are we not? Which part of "historical black college" has anything to do with religion? The "historical" part? Is it "black?" "COLLEGE!" I know it's college.
post #117 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShawnJ View Post

Really?

Well, Nick, as I'm sure you know, whether something was enacted with a secular purpose is just one prong of a three prong test for whether something violates the Establishment Clause. Of course you know this. I don't doubt for a second you don't. But you're treating "valid secular purpose" as if it's dispositive. It's not. So I'm unclear how something having a valid secular purpose alone can defeat the prohibition against direct aid in constituting an endorsement of religion. Why would I only have to prove that the funds don't have a valid secular purpose? I've never contested this conclusion.

But the other two, my friend?


The other two? Are you seriously suggesting that providing education advances religion or cutting a check to parents as a scholarship represents an excessive entanglement?

I'm not going to piss in the wind and state your case for you counsel. If you want to make claims about the other two points, then present them.

Quote:
If it was just a tax refund and that's it-- no other limitations-- yet 90% of the people donated the refund to churches, then yes, that's not going to pose any problems. That's just pure individual choice. There's nothing that funnels it to the religious organizations. However that example is not like the vouchers in Zelman, where if the students were to transfer, the vouchers only covered the cost of religious private school education. If it covered the cost of the more expensive secular private school education as well, there would be less of a funnel to the religious schools.

There is nothing that prevents the secular school that took the 10% from expanding to accommodating additional students. There is nothing that prevents the private schools from dropping their rates to gain the students. This is nothing more than pure individual choice here as well but you don't like their choice. The more expensive schools choose to price themselves out and it is likely because they desire not to service the clientèle. Their lack of desire does not mean the poorer students forgo their rights.

Quote:
You've read Souter's 32 page dissent? Or the others?

Naw I read the summation which presents the major points without all the previous citations. However you desire to suggest you did so if you believe they addressed it you should state it.

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You are vastly oversimplifying and mis-"reading" the opinion.

The majority said this plan does not create a funnel of government money to religious organizations; not that funnels are constitutional.

I'm not misreading the opinion. You are intentionally misconstruing my statement to knock down the strawman. You suggest the mechanism that led to a 90% result is a funnel. The majority opinion stated it isn't. I said the same mechanism could lead to a 100% result and it still wouldn't be a funnel using the same reasoning that stated 90% wasn't. You then distract from this by saying they didn't rule that funnels were legal.

I'm not contending it is a funnel. You are and do so without any support beyond your opinion. Support your contention that a 90% result amounts to a funnel when the majority has ruled it isn't. Use something beyond your desires, and opinions.

Quote:
Agreeing with something constitutionally is not always a proxy for a person's normative beliefs or policy positions. I would see less of a constitutional problem with this voucher program if there were more equal choices, but I would still oppose it on policy grounds. I hardly see how that's so unbelievable a position. Furthermore, I hardly think you're qualified to talk about my opinions.

We all understand that the authoritarian streak in you demands that reality conform to your whims before people get their rights. Thankfully the Supreme Court has not made that a ruling and thus when

Your view is as follows, the district has failed to educate these poor children and not enough rich schools care to educate them as well, so until these two variables change, they forgo their rights.

Your indignation about being qualified to judge your opinions is so cute.That waspy, east coast, private school exasperation you show when we don't realize WHO you are and give you some sort of proper due is quite hilarious.

You are welcome to state what makes me unqualified to judge your opinion.

Quote:
You need money to attend a public school?

You do. It may not be provided directly by the parents but it is is provided on a per pupil basis wherever they choose to attend.

Quote:
Students did get money for "tutorial aid" for public school, but I think the state just threw that in there to pad the statistics. I think the proper comparison is what the money is being spent on outside the school district.

Since you "think" the state manipulated the numbers, why don't you state something to show that. If you think the proper comparison is money spent outside the school district, why don't you quote that portion of the decision with the relevant information. Why don't you further show something beyond what you think since your mere thoughts are not very persuasive to me.

Quote:
Welcome to Nick's fabulously wonderful world of making things up.

Sure. You've refuted what I've said with an ad-hom. How quaint!

Quote:
Nowhere have I said Catholic schools are "wealthy" or that the schools "subsidize the voucher cost." I said, and I will repeat again, that that Catholic Church subsidizes tuition for its school students. This is irrefutable. My point was that religious private schools were cheaper than secular private schools as a result of the Church's subsidy to the schools. Because the voucher amount neatly coincided with the tuition rate for religious private schools, 90% of transferring students chose those religious private schools instead of the secular private schools.

The scholarship rate was half the level of monies received by public schools. That amount was NOT determined by the church. You've mentioned the fact that secular schools won't match the rate a half dozen times but you never support in any form or fashion how this constitutes a religious endorsement. Your view is that the Catholic Church offers the educational services at a loss. That still does not mean the parents choosing it is a government endorsement of religion.

Let me quote from the opinion for you.

The incidental advancement of a religious mission, or the perceived endorsement of a religious message, is reasonably attributable to the individual aid recipients not the government, whose role ends with the disbursement of benefits.

The government hands out money. That is the end of its role. The fact that the church will take a loss does not change that roll. So please, before you repeat yourself again, show how the church influencing INDIVIDUAL choices amounts to government endorsement.

Quote:
But they didn't.

If they did do that, then we would see more equal choices.

You fail to realize that people do not forgo their rights until you feel proper percentages of other people have acted as you desire. You've not stated any support for this beyond the fact that you want it. The choices must be broad, not equal. Please cite some support for this beyond, gimme what I want.

Quote:
1. For secular private schools, absolutely.

2. The Church does subsidize the cost of education. My thoughts on this point are above.

3. You cannot get around the prohibition of direct aid by claiming taxes are really your money. That's not the way things work.

1. Your support for this is that Shawn doesn't like the percentages. The court does not view you as an authority.

2. The church influencing individual decisions is not the state endorsing religion.

3. That isn't what I am claiming. You state that individuals choosing to go to subsidized Catholic schools is a government endorsement of religion by providing aid to those churches. The first point is that you've not proven it is a government endorsement. The secondary point is that churches providing services at a loss does not amount to "aid."

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We are talking about the Establishment Clause, are we not? Which part of "historical black college" has anything to do with religion? The "historical" part? Is it "black?" "COLLEGE!" I know it's college.

I was trying to get you to see past your biases. The fact that they ruled that it doesn't violate the establishment clause you still act as if they did state this really shows your refusal to deal with reality. I simply suggested a scenario where you might be able to deal with reality since you ignore it here and substitute lengthy diatribes about how your opinion can't be judged, how you think the ratios need to be equal, losses are aid, and how you feel the establishment clause has been violated. Your support for all this is, "Yeah, but I'm Shawn."

Get over yourself.

Nick

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #118 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

It would want fixing if the objective of the participants in it happen to match up to the service it is supposed to provide. One area that is very strange with regard to public education is those who failed to provide good service are often placed in charge of determining the next course of action. Their solutions reflect the same desires of the system not to change and as such, the solution is seldom one that brings about any change.

Well, you and I both know that (on different levels), this isn't as hopeless as it may seem. Just because things haven't changed is no indication of intractability. It may take time, but incompetent people can be exposed and removed. Peter principle be damned.

Quote:
I'm not attempting to use the exception to prove the rule is that is what the saying is supposed to suggest. Since a little less than 2% of students are home schooled, you only have a few examples per district to consider in the first place. When those few examples are treated in a common manner it still forms a trend.

A trend, maybe. But a trend within an exception to the rule.

Quote:
That would be the best solution and have no doubt agree with you. However the failure of the government to do this does not mean the children and parents are compelled to suffer. Think of vouchers as the smallest and most agreeable form of civil damages government can pay for failure to provide a service by those who have the right to it.

That's an interesting way to approach the issue, I think, and to be honest I've never thought it that way. But another way to do it would be to establish, say, 1000 flagship schools around the country and make them highly competitive to get into, free for any students, provide enormously high salaries for teachers, and make them into palaces. The private sector can't do that.
Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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Gangs are not seen as legitimate, because they don't have control over public schools.
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post #119 of 119
Can we please close this thread and start over with one Obama thread and one school voucher thread? Thanks.
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