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WSJ: "The Self-Inflicted Economic Death of Ohio"

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But if Cincinnatians vote down things like light rail, don't support downtown development, and even badmouth projects like the Streetcar, the Banks, the Freedom Center, how can they expect "knowledge workers" to stick around?

 

The economic developoment of the region depends on projects that actually make long-term financial sense and can eventually sustain themselves. The Freedom Center is arguably none of the above. While light rail, the banks, etc. are all fine ideas, the freedom center in my opinion is a perfect example of political pandering and taxpayer fleecing.

 

I was just pointing out how a lot of "cultural" things within the city are lacking support from Cincinnatians, and the Freedom Center is a good example because I always hear talks about why we should cut its budget or even tear it down entirely.

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"Strickland" "psychobabble"

 

Ok, I tried to delienate the reasons for Ohio's fiscal troubles upthread.  Not much discussion on regionalism or Medicaid reform followed.

 

To get to the point, Finn wrote a slandering, disconnected diatribe to make the case for his decades-old panacea of charter schools.  Charter schools consume hundreds of millions of Ohio taxpayers' dollars per year for a small number of students to have an exclusive education.  Results have worse than public schools.  There has been fraud and theft.

 

It looks all the world to me like a ruse to get public funding for private religious schools.  School vouchers have been the output of a decades-long foundation-funded campaign that spend hundreds of millions of dollars to sell the public on their point of view.  They concentrated on Wisconsin and Ohio.  Thanks for nothing.

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Could it be his talk of "reform" is really pandering to the unions?

 

I may be taking this out of context, but name one thing the teachers union has won in Ohio in the past 5 years...

 

OEA has fought for school funding change...That hasn't happened...We even present several alternative ideas to Columbus...

My fees to renew my license went from 45 dollars every 5 years to 350 dollars every 5 years...

Or how about my coaching pay check is taxed at 45 percent...

Or how about to get rid of the OGT (for the record I think it is a good idea)...

 

People like to blame the teachers union, but the facts are the facts...Minus a strike here or there, they really have no power at all and haven't even protected their own members...

 

For the record a lot of the things the union gets blamed for are the legislators fault...And for the "they protect lazy teachers" argument, It isn't easy to fire a teacher, but it isn't hard either...It just requires documentation, which I believe is important, otherwise any kid that complains a teacher is "bad" because they are "hard" would get fired...That is a far worse scenario than what is in place now...AND you can fire a tenure teacher, again all it requires is documentation, I have seen it happen a couple of times in my teaching experience...It is on the administration to do their job...

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But all you've done is talk around the questions posed, not submitted an answer.  Unless you're saying that the answer is "nothing, let the unruly kids run wild and the hungry kids starve."  But I don't think you are saying that.  I just don't know what you are saying.

I said the onus falls on the parents and whatever helps parents be responsible adults/role models for their children should be supported.  That includes having the children being around other mature adults/mentors and imbuing the children with the essential virtues necessary for success/self-actualization by adulthood so they can make responsible decisions and become productive members of society. 

 

Finn wants Ohio's economy to turn around (via the free market) and supports the school choice instead of letting helpless children (with absentee/incompetent parents) languish in inner city schools.  But to say that everything in the article is "a ruse to get public funding for private religious schools" is silly.  Ohio's educational system is so underwhelming that one doesn't need a ruse to argue for alternatives!  The facts speak for themselves.  Also, where is Strickland's reform plan?  Could it be his talk of "reform" is really pandering to the unions?

...

 

One more time.  Finn got the Wall Street Journal to run a poorly written piece about Ohio's economy that hardly makes the case for taking taxpayer's money and giving it to a few students to have an exclusive education.

 

And Governor Strickland has only had 18 months in office.  So far, his educational efforts have been to appoint the very talented Eric Fingerhut as Chancellor of Education.  Fingerhut has done a lot of work and outreach.  I have only heard good reports about Fingerhut's efforts.

 

I don't think you understand taxing or fiscal policy either.  You change the subject to unruly kids and people who should not be parents when I mention it.

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1) Whoever said "a few students to have an exclusive education"? You did. I'm sure Finn and anyone else that understands the plight of students in underperforming public schools would want them all to have school choice (voucher, charters, etc.).

 

If 18 months isn't a long time to wait for public education reform, tell me what is. Sounds like more pandering out of Columbus.

 

I don't understand all this stuff about "underperforming" and "failing" public schools, as if the schools, and the public sector, are to blame for the difficulties in the classrooms. Show me a "failing school" that's not in a failing neighborhood filled with failing families. What drives down the performance in those "failing schools" is parents and families that are not helping the kids -- and vouchers are not going to help those kids because the parents aren't there to seek the vouchers for them or to enroll them in charter schools or to lottery them into other schools in the same district. Stop blaming the schools and the public sector. The problem with the most troubled urban and rural education systems is really a social and economic problem in the homes and in the broader society.

 

As for whether 18 months is a long time to wait for education reform, I'll tell you what is longer: The previous 10 years after the DeRolfe Decision, when two Ohio governors and both houses of the legislature not only failed to reform education, but fought the decision tooth and nail. I agree Strickland should have something in the process sooner than now, but 18 months is still early -- and a whole lot less than 10 years.

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But all you've done is talk around the questions posed, not submitted an answer.  Unless you're saying that the answer is "nothing, let the unruly kids run wild and the hungry kids starve."  But I don't think you are saying that.  I just don't know what you are saying.

I said the onus falls on the parents and whatever helps parents be responsible adults/role models for their children should be supported.  That includes having the children being around other mature adults/mentors and imbuing the children with the essential virtues necessary for success/self-actualization by adulthood so they can make responsible decisions and become productive members of society. 

 

But you've said that it isn't anyone's job to spend your hard earned money to do the things you are talking about.  So which is it?

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I think it gets at what we are arguing about when we argue about taxes.  Some conservatives seem to think that liberals like taxing for its own sake.  Some liberals seem to think that conservatives like to see hungry children go unfed.  I don't think either of those are true.  You pointed out a general set of what you say are worthwhile activities for dealing with problem children.  The question is, "Do you think they are worth paying for?"

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a poorly written piece about Ohio's economy that hardly makes the case for taking taxpayer's money and giving it to a few students to have an exclusive education.

...

I don't think you understand taxing or fiscal policy either.  You change the subject to unruly kids and people who should not be parents when I mention it.

1 Whoever said "a few students to have an exclusive education"?  You did.  I'm sure Finn and anyone else that understands the plight of students in underperforming public schools would want them all to have school choice (voucher, charters, etc.).

 

2 If 18 months isn't a long time to wait for public education reform, tell me what is.  Sounds like more pandering out of Columbus.

 

3 I understand taxes and fiscal policy quite well.  What I understand better is the free market economy and the role high tax rates play in hampering growth and innovation. 

 

Are you really defending Ohio's economic state right now?  Would a better title for this thread be "The Self-Defined Economic Success of Ohio's Tax and Spend Government"?

(1) Vouchers are a ruse for people who can already afford private schools to get my tax money to send their children to the school of their choice.  "Charter schools" are the figleaf constructed by the foundation-funded rich people to make it look like it is not an exclusive benefit for the religious-education and the prep-academy set.

 

(2) How is that "pandering"?

 

(3) I delineated other reasons for Ohio's fiscal problems upthread.  Would you care to address such questions as Medicaid and nursing home funding?

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It is easy to criticize the article as "inaccurate" or whatever, but it is unmistakable that Ohio is hurting bad.  Isn't it reasonable to suggest that some of it might be due to Ohio itself? 

 

I don't know how many of you read Richard Longworth's book "Caught in Middle", but if you didn't, I suggest you do.  One of his key observations was how in Indiana and Ohio there was a deep state of denial about what is going on.

 

I just look at the conversation on this board.  There seems to be a big belief in significant government regulation to force people and businesses to locate and live in accordance with preferred development patterns.

 

Ohio is high tax, and appears to be high regulation and anti-business.  There is always some regulation or other being discussed here that targets businesses: pay day loan store laws, strip club laws, etc.

 

What's more, like much of the rest of the Midwest, Ohio has been reflexively opposed to change.  Of course, for some people, that's rational.  If you are an under-educated factory worker with no hope of participating in the 21st century economy, why not support policies that try to prop up what remains?

 

One of the problems facing Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan especially is that their industries didn't get obliterated.  One reason Pittsburgh seems to be hanging in there, for example, is that its industries were destroyed long ago.  It faced up to the fact that there was no holding on or going back long ago.  Of course Pittsburgh is no economic mecca to be sure, but it seems to be doing better than the Detroits and Clevelands of this world.

 

As for Strickland's popularity, coming after Taft and near the end of the Bush administration certainly helps.  He's made some tough but right calls such as blowing the whistle on ODOT's over-commitments, but the jury is still out.

 

It's incredibly difficult to push through change.  Indiana governor Mitch Daniels may yet go down to electoral defeat for two reasons: he pushed through daylight savings time and leased the Toll Road to pay for a major highway expansion program.  These were both extremely unpopular in certain quarters.  It's tough to believe, but you can still make people in Indiana bitter and angry by bringing up daylight savings time.

 

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Regarding ODOT's projects, the time from concept to implementation on major highway or transit projects is very long.  You can just say, "Cancel these, build those" easily.  What's more, if one administration started re-writing the project list when taking office, this would establish a precedent for doing so, which would lead to chaos.

 

As we speak, ODOT is looking at revising its strategies and policies, so change may be in the offing.  It just isn't as fast as some want.

 

By the way, the Columbus inner loop project is desperately needed.  That's a heavily congested and high crash area.

 

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What's more, like much of the rest of the Midwest, Ohio has been reflexively opposed to change.  Of course, for some people, that's rational.  If you are an under-educated factory worker with no hope of participating in the 21st century economy, why not support policies that try to prop up what remains?

 

AMEN!

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I just look at the conversation on this board.  There seems to be a big belief in significant government regulation to force people and businesses to locate and live in accordance with preferred development patterns.

 

 

that is how we ended up with the massive suburbanization in this country.

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It is easy to criticize the article as "inaccurate" or whatever, but it is unmistakable that Ohio is hurting bad.  Isn't it reasonable to suggest that some of it might be due to Ohio itself? 

 

...

 

I just look at the conversation on this board.  There seems to be a big belief in significant government regulation to force people and businesses to locate and live in accordance with preferred development patterns.

I call it "responsible management for the common good in a world of declining resources".  I also call it maturity.

...

 

What's more, like much of the rest of the Midwest, Ohio has been reflexively opposed to change.  Of course, for some people, that's rational.  If you are an under-educated factory worker with no hope of participating in the 21st century economy, why not support policies that try to prop up what remains?

 

One of the problems facing Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan especially is that their industries didn't get obliterated.  One reason Pittsburgh seems to be hanging in there, for example, is that its industries were destroyed long ago.  It faced up to the fact that there was no holding on or going back long ago.  Of course Pittsburgh is no economic mecca to be sure, but it seems to be doing better than the Detroits and Clevelands of this world.

...

Reducto ad absurdum would be Youngstown.  Their integrated steel industry and off-shoot steel users' industry have been obliterated.  Auto employment has been reduced through automation and outsourcing to Mexico.  That is not working out very well. 

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Quote from: arenn on Today at 10:53:29 AM

 

I just look at the conversation on this board.  There seems to be a big belief in significant government regulation to force people and businesses to locate and live in accordance with preferred development patterns.

 

that is how we ended up with the massive suburbanization in this country.

 

 

Touche!  A well made point; it was not regulations per se, but directed government investment and programs in highways, home loans, etc. that pushed for suburbanization.

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Reducto ad absurdum would be Youngstown. Their integrated steel industry and off-shoot steel users' industry have been obliterated. Auto employment has been reduced through automation and outsourcing to Mexico. That is not working out very well.

 

Actually, Youngstown is the perfect poster child.  They are one of the few cities out there that has come to terms with their permanently reduced size and role in the world.  Hence their active shrinkage management program that is being studied across America.  They may not have had a return to prosperity, but they are facing up to the problems.

 

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I am skeptical that Ohio can regulate its way to some imagined Portland-like nirvana.  I do agree that previous regulations has unintended consequences, many of them negative.  However, no one seems to have learned the real lesson, which is that all regulations have unintended consequences.  Today's planners have lost none of the zeal for planning that brought us urban renewal, public housing (something which many, many progressives and modern architects were in on, btw), highly segregated land uses, streets without sidewalks, etc.  The real lesson should be some humility about the limits of our ability to plan.  Instead, every new generation of planners goes out and says, "this time for sure".

 

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You all might find this article interesting.  It is from the republican magazine the American Spectator.  For some reason google/firefox say this is an attack site and block it.  Not sure if it really has malware or if this is just part of google's ongoing program of conveniently blocking web sites of organizations that don't line up with what they like.  (Google definitely does this - you might have recalled the tempest last week about the pro-Hillary bloggers who suddenly all had their sites blocked by blogger as "spam" when they started attacking Obama).  In any case, consider the source, which is another right wing publication like the Journal opinion page.

 

How the republicans lost the Buckeye state:

http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=13450

 

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It could be worse in Ohio; it could be Michigan, where there is a similar self-inflicted death spiral going on.  Not only the auto industry imploding, taxes have been going up, the state spends more on incarceration than it does schools, the Detroit mayor faces several felony indictments, the Detroit city council has many members under investigation, etc.  One difference is that there seem to be some media types calling the state's leadership on the carpet.  See this column from today for example:

 

Has Michigan passed its tipping point?

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080704/OPINION03/807040342/1322/OPINION0301

 

That guy writes mostly about the auto industry, but has many scathing columns about the political class and the state's economy.  See:

 

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?Category=OPINION0301

 

and

 

http://info.detnews.com/redesign/blogs/danielhowesblog/index.cfm

 

Oh, the Journal hates Detroit too.

 

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120916727098046281.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries

 

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You all might find this article interesting.  It is from the republican magazine the American Spectator.  ...

How the republicans lost the Buckeye state:

http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=13450

 

Despite John Kerry's desire to turn the Buckeye State into the 2004 equivalent of the Florida recount debacle, Bush prevailed again four years later

 

Bollocks.  It was Secy of State Kenneth Blackwell who gamed the election by fouling with rules about voter registration and provisional balloting.  That SOB invalidated mail in voter registration forms that were printed as a public service by the Cleveland Plain Dealer.    He's another Katherine Harris.  He may have succeeded in giving us another four years of President Cheney.

 

I have a notion that the Ohio Democratic Party was infested with Republicans and that explains their ineffectiveness.  Just something that I read on another blog, FWIW, YMMV.  Funny that Antle could write that article without talking about Iraq, Katrina, or how absolutely loathesome Bush is.

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Touche!  A well made point; it was not regulations per se, but directed government investment and programs in highways, home loans, etc. that pushed for suburbanization.

 

It was regulations too. Most regulations in suburban areas require segregated uses. You couldn't have mixed use even if you wanted to, and that still rings true today in much of Ohio. We're way behind the curve.

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Bollocks.  It was Secy of State Kenneth Blackwell who gamed the election by fouling with rules about voter registration and provisional balloting.  That SOB invalidated mail in voter registration forms that were printed as a public service by the Cleveland Plain Dealer.    He's another Katherine Harris.

 

Hundreds of thousands of votes were completely lost in the populous, liberal Lake Erie counties (meaning a lot more Kerry votes than Bush votes). The election was rigged. Watch "How Ohio Pulled it Off" or any of the numerous documentaries on the 2004 election fraud in this state. Poll workers and machines were oversaturated in suburban trash areas and largely absent in many minority and central city districts.

 

http://www.howohiopulleditoff.com/trailer

 

Thankfully, the antichrist Blackwell got his ass handed to him in 2006.

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Touche!  A well made point; it was not regulations per se, but directed government investment and programs in highways, home loans, etc. that pushed for suburbanization.

 

It was regulations too. Most regulations in suburban areas require segregated uses. You couldn't have mixed use even if you wanted to, and that still rings true today in much of Ohio. We're way behind the curve.

 

You are correct, but I was referring to Federal government programs specifically.

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The "throwing more money at the schools" method is probably the most injurious and wrong-headed approach that liberals have toward education. Which district in the US spends the most per pupil? Washington, DC spends over $13,000 per student and most people wouldn't send their kids to school in Washington, DC.

 

Throwing more money at it doesn't always make it better.

 

Boreal, lighten up and get real. C-Dawg, please don't ruin this thread like all the others.

 

you have correctly identified what that Supreme Court saw in 1954, separate is inherently unequal

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Nothing is going to happen on the schools issue as the status quo beneifts both the GOP (with their predominently suburban base) and teachers unions (part of the Democratic base, which would be threatened by any thoroughgoing school reform).

 

@@@

 

There is an example of an experiment at comprhensive school reform in Kentucky, with KERA, also a response to a state supreme court decision.  The reform fixed funding, but also reformed testing and instruction.  As in Ohio, reform was opposed by both conservatives and teachers (the joke was that KERA stood for Kentucky Early Retirement Act), but the reform was enacted because K-12 was so dire...the politicians got tired of saying "Thank God for Mississppii", since that state always ranked dead last in education measures, preventing KY from ranking at the bottom).

 

I recall bringing up Kentucky here before but as pretty much dismissed for various reasons, which I think illustrates the fatal mix of chauvinism (Ohio compared to KY? Never!) and parochialism (not being interested in other states' experience in education reform..other states besides Ohio & KY had court orders to fix their schools), or maybe a political agenda to shoot down concepts of reform as a threat to the status quo.

 

 

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I tend to agree with ARenn and FtLod about taxes and business climate.  I don't think you can blame unions anymore as they pretty small % of the private sector workforce, so perhaps other things could be done to improve the business climate, such as the tax structure..maybe Ohio should model itself after growing states like North Carolina, Georgia, and Texas.

 

 

 

 

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The "throwing more money at the schools" method is probably the most injurious and wrong-headed approach that liberals have toward education. Which district in the US spends the most per pupil? Washington, DC spends over $13,000 per student and most people wouldn't send their kids to school in Washington, DC.

 

Throwing more money at it doesn't always make it better.

 

Boreal, lighten up and get real. C-Dawg, please don't ruin this thread like all the others.

 

We're going in circles here.  Just comparing per student expenditure is only half the equation.  It is more expensive to provide education for a student population that includes more students with special needs or behavioral problems.  The question is what to do with these kids.  Have you figured out a free method?

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We're going in circles here.  Just comparing per student expenditure is only half the equation.  It is more expensive to provide education for a student population that includes more students with special needs or behavioral problems.

 

Don't forget too that many inner city schools in states like Ohio are running at half capacity. Population loss and charter schools have taken away a lot of students. Inner city schools have to spend more per pupil on basic utilities and maintaining the building just because they many times are half full.

 

The real question is, "Whose responsibility is it?"  Who are you to say it is mine?

 

And whose responsibility is it to pay for suburban kids? If we're going to have public education, it's going to cost us tax money (though nothing compared to what we put towards defense, or highways, or other things). When it comes down to it, we don't put much money towards public education. Modern school buildings resemble prisons for good reason. Basically, in terms of our priorities, public schools are no more important than jails and our funding structure reflects that.

 

Still, I agree it's about a lot more than money. I don't even think money is the issue. I think it's the teachers in many cases, hence why DC just fired hundreds of teachers and is undergoing a huge revamp. They've been spending all this money with no results. They've had enough. It's time to start looking at other reasons the schools suck. In DC, there were many teachers who couldn't pass basic tests on the subject they taught, or they didn't even have bachelor degrees at all. That's how desperate the situation is in the nation's capital. Not even Teach for America can save it. There's just way too much ground to cover. Most teachers can't handle the DC environment.

 

Our teachers are largely trained with a "one size fits all approach" which translates to "one size fits all middle class suburbanites approach." There's a reason Teach for America is generally more effective in troubled districts than the formally-trained education majors coming out of our colleges. The pay is the same either way. Keep in mind too how incredibly hard it can be to find good teachers in poor districts. TFA is sometimes the only option, and it's been working well lately. Of course I also think the surrounding demographics play a huge role. If the kids are living in areas where most their friends are going to four-year universities, they're going to want to go too. It's basic peer pressure. Without that culture of four-year university, it's going to be harder to motivate students. That's why not any old teacher can do well in districts like that. It takes a different kind of teacher for a different kind of job.

 

Basically, what you have today are a lot of angry parents in the central city, and then a lot of angry teachers unions whenever their jobs are threatened. The teachers unions are the strongest unions left in this country, and it's hard to break them. I would say the unions do protect a lot of bad teachers, or teachers who just can't fit into the culture of the school they're teaching at. My own experience leads me to believe that. Of all my teachers, I'd say only a handful were acceptable. And most of these good teachers were also professors at BG, go figure. They had to live up to much higher standards.

 

And despite all this discussion, we're talking about something that can't even begin to save this state. High school degrees mean nothing these days. We've got to increase our percentage of bachelors and masters degrees in Ohio if we want a fighting chance. And of course, we don't have the money to do this...

 

Our universities our struggling just as much as the primary and secondary schools.

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The "throwing more money at the schools" method is probably the most injurious and wrong-headed approach that liberals have toward education. Which district in the US spends the most per pupil? Washington, DC spends over $13,000 per student and most people wouldn't send their kids to school in Washington, DC.

 

Throwing more money at it doesn't always make it better.

 

Boreal, lighten up and get real. C-Dawg, please don't ruin this thread like all the others.

 

We're going in circles here. Just comparing per student expenditure is only half the equation. It is more expensive to provide education for a student population that includes more students with special needs or behavioral problems. The question is what to do with these kids. Have you figured out a free method?

The real question is, "Whose responsibility is it?" Who are you to say it is mine?

 

There's plenty of responsibility to go around.  First to the parents to make sure that the kids have a stable home life.  Then to the schools to make sure the kids get a well rounded useful education.  Then to the public to make sure that the education and services these children need to become productive members of society are funded well enough for them to accomplish their mission. 

 

The problem is that some children are being failed at 1 or more of these levels, and often all three.  I believe that if a child has a bad school system, good parents can overcome that, and if they have bad or no parents, a good school system with good special needs education can help them overcome that as well.  The problems is that so many of the parents who aren't willing or capable are clustered in our poorest school system.  That's why they need more money per student.

 

Who am I to tell you what your responsibility is?  I'm a member of the same public as you that will benefit or fail depending on how well we do at bringing the next generation up to be productive members of society.  We're on the same team.  If you have a different play you want to call, then by all means do so.  But if not I can't tell what you want from us but to give up.

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The problem is that some children are being failed at 1 or more of these levels, and often all three.  I believe that if a child has a bad school system, good parents can overcome that, and if they have bad or no parents, a good school system with good special needs education can help them overcome that as well.  The problems is that so many of the parents who aren't willing or capable are clustered in our poorest school system.  That's why they need more money per student.

 

This really does state the obvious.  However, I think either your interlocutor deleted his posts, or the moderators did.

 

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This thread is ridiculously off-topic.

 

It's filed under "Ohio Business and Economy" not "Education."  So save the debates to a different thread.

Ok, you don't want to spend any more time on the WSJ author's arguement for vouchers and "charter schools".  I have twice posted about the nature of Ohio's fiscal problems and had no responses.  You can't cut taxes without cutting programs.  For the love of Dayton, what's your solution?

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Just in case anybody wants to talk about the cost of programs in Ohio, here is a column from the Beacon Journal:

 

Nine out of every $10 in state money are spent on a handful of priorities: public schools, higher education, Medicaid, prisons and property tax relief. Of late, prison costs (an average of $25,000 per inmate) have outpaced the growth in state revenues, and that isn't likely to change soon, the inmate population projected to increase from the current 50,000 to 60,000 by 2011. The trend for Medicaid largely is the same, spending on the federal and state health-care program for the poor typically increasing in a weak economy.

http://www.ohio.com/editorial/douglas/23745339.html

 

I see a billion dollars of prison spending that can be cut into.  A pox on the prison lobby!

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It is easy to criticize the article as "inaccurate" or whatever, but it is unmistakable that Ohio is hurting bad.  Isn't it reasonable to suggest that some of it might be due to Ohio itself? 

 

I don't know how many of you read Richard Longworth's book "Caught in Middle", but if you didn't, I suggest you do.  One of his key observations was how in Indiana and Ohio there was a deep state of denial about what is going on.

 

I just look at the conversation on this board.  There seems to be a big belief in significant government regulation to force people and businesses to locate and live in accordance with preferred development patterns.

 

Ohio is high tax, and appears to be high regulation and anti-business.  There is always some regulation or other being discussed here that targets businesses: pay day loan store laws, strip club laws, etc.

 

What's more, like much of the rest of the Midwest, Ohio has been reflexively opposed to change.  Of course, for some people, that's rational.  If you are an under-educated factory worker with no hope of participating in the 21st century economy, why not support policies that try to prop up what remains?

 

One of the problems facing Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan especially is that their industries didn't get obliterated.  One reason Pittsburgh seems to be hanging in there, for example, is that its industries were destroyed long ago.  It faced up to the fact that there was no holding on or going back long ago.  Of course Pittsburgh is no economic mecca to be sure, but it seems to be doing better than the Detroits and Clevelands of this world.

 

As for Strickland's popularity, coming after Taft and near the end of the Bush administration certainly helps.  He's made some tough but right calls such as blowing the whistle on ODOT's over-commitments, but the jury is still out.

 

It's incredibly difficult to push through change.  Indiana governor Mitch Daniels may yet go down to electoral defeat for two reasons: he pushed through daylight savings time and leased the Toll Road to pay for a major highway expansion program.  These were both extremely unpopular in certain quarters.  It's tough to believe, but you can still make people in Indiana bitter and angry by bringing up daylight savings time.

 

This is a well-reasoned response.  Since the time of this article, I think it's fair to say that Ohio has only gotten worse.  As for Mitch Daniels, he's the sort of leader Ohio needs.  Someone that will make unpopular decisions that actually payoff.  He went into office with a few simple goals and has done everything he can to accomplish them while almost entirely ignoring partisan politics.  That's easier in a state like Indiana with basically one urban area and a more harmonious political climate.

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