Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Growing Layers of Failure

The irony is so thick here it could be used as mortar to cement bricks.

STORY ONE (via National Public Radio): Kansas City's Failed Schools Leave Students Behind

STORY TWO (via The Blaze): North Carolina Food Police Replaces Nutritious Homemade Lunches with Deep Fried Processed Chicken Nuggets

The tragedy in Kansas City schools in story ONE above is simply heartbreaking.  The Kansas City failure is a story of a revolving door of administrators, an incompetent school board, middle class flight to private schools and suburban districts, and a teachers union deeply invested in a system that assures failure.  Scott Simon of NPR will continue this series next Saturday and I hope you will all tune in or visit the NPR Website.

I've written often here that Government does absolutely nothing well.  There are some things that only Government can do, the military is the most often mentioned example.  But even then the waste, incompetence, the inefficiencies and corruption is staggering.  

I'm guessing next week, Scott Simon will at least mention the state is considering Charter Schools or even privatizing the entire failed Kansas City School System.  This is exactly what should happen.

Meanwhile, via story TWO above, we have our government taking on another task that it will mismanage completely.  The well meaning North Carolina Legislature wanted to make sure children in the pre-kindergarten program had the proper nutrition to help them prepare for school.  Unfortunately, they only created a bureaucracy of food police following bureaucratic guidelines without even a modicum of logic or intelligence.  

So we have nameless inspectors not allowing children to eat a homemade meat and cheese sandwich on a whole wheat bun with fruit and fruit juice and instead forcing the child to eat in the school cafeteria.  Because the inspector is only "doing his job" he has no idea what the school cafeteria lunch actually is.  His job is to simply inspect the homemade lunch to be certain it has two fruits and vegetables. He doesn't care his actions forced the child to eat deep fried processed chicken nuggets with white bread and milk and ABSOLUTELY NO VEGETABLES!!!.

Somewhere along the line the mission of schools to teach got lost and their new mission is monitor homemade lunches.

As Liberals we should not ever be invested in the process, but only in the results. By definition Liberals should think outside the box, love alternatives and innovation.  We should not be invested in methodology of the past.  We should always strive for new, groundbreaking solutions.  It's time we realized that government is virtually never the solution.

Our goals and dreams must never change, but we must be willing to follow new paths toward achieving those goals.


Chris said...

That's a nice thought, but Liberals (progressives) are about nothing but process.

Compulsory schooling yielding increasingly poor students unable to analyze ideas? We just need more money jammed into the same system to fix it.

Kids getting fat? Couldn't have anything to do with the exponential increase in availability of cheap and tasty snack food, coupled with increased leisure time and money, coupled with a coordinated campaign to frighten parents into wrapping their kids in a cocoon. And you know what? I don't care. If other kids are getting fat, that's their problem. It's not mine, it's not yours, and it's certainly not governments problem on our behalf. Let's remove any remaining vestiges of personal responsibility, though, just to be sure. It doesn't matter that the child in question got a poor lunch, what matters is that the parent is chastised for not following the process.

Bob Keller said...

Chris, You make excellent points.

This is why I believe true liberals must divorce themselves from the Progressive Movement and the Democratic Party.

You cannot say you're a supporter of improving children's education then go in lockstep with teacher's unions that fight higher quality education with all their hearts, minds and pocketbooks.

Progressives are all about power. Period. They want control. Then they want absolute control.

That's why I often say there is NO DIFFERENCE between left wing Progressives and right wing Fundamentalists except the name of the god they want to force us all to serve.

Chris said...

I am a right-wing fundamentalist. Heh.