Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Education Plan Is Political Payoff

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Education Plan Is Political Payoff

Article excerpt

Just a year ago, President Bill Clinton announced in his State of the Union address that the era of big government was over. But, in this year's State of the Union address, he announced further expansions of government and of government spending.

Anybody can be inconsistent, but Clinton's political genius is in getting away with it, smirking all the while. His plan to "balance the budget" is a classic. He promises a balanced budget by the year 2002 - a year after he is gone - but wants to increase the education budget alone to a whopping $51 billion right now.

That is precisely how we built up a huge national debt in the first place - spending now and promising big cutbacks in the future. Of course, the cutbacks never came. The danger that some game like this will be played again is even greater, now that the cry of "bipartisanship" is in the air in Washington. Bipartisanship is one of those nice notions loved by those in the media. But bipartisanship in action has too often meant collusion by the Democrats and the Republicans at the expense of the public. In the past, this often meant higher taxes. But, with the voters today being in no mood to stand for that, bipartisanship may mean some other ill-conceived scheme that enables Democrats and Republicans alike to look good while doing harm. The danger of bipartisan baloney is especially great because of the focus on education and because Newt Gingrich and the Republicans are in a defensive mode, where they may feel a need to make a deal - any kind of deal - with the president, to help rehabilitate their image. When Gingrich starts schmoozing with Jesse Jackson, that cannot be a good sign. If there has ever been an idea that has been disproved by the facts, over and over, it is the idea that having the federal government throw more money at schools and colleges will produce better education. No small part of what is wrong with American education today comes from the federal government. It was precisely after soaring sums of federal money began to pour into education in the 1960s that test scores began to decline, as the feds financed all sorts of boondoggles that got the schools away from the basics. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.