When I watch student protests in Portugal or Illinois and I see them chanting against basic math and basic economics, it makes me realize what a huge impact the education system has had on their thought processes. The issues at play aren't difficult to understand. In a free society, businesses have the ability to flee tax and regulatory oppression. Social spending comes from profits. You can't lower profits and raise social spending without ending up insolvent and bankrupt, yet our students can't grasp this simple concept.
Seriously, think about that for a minute. Here are the equations involved:
Profits * Tax Rate + Borrowing = Government SpendingThat's it. That's all there is. If you raise taxes and increase regulation, profitable people and businesses may leave. If you borrow money to pay for social programs, your debt-servicing costs will crowd out the programs you want to support. How is it possible that after a decade or so of "education" our students can't comprehend those two simple equations?
Government Spending = Government Programs + Debt Servicing Costs
I'm not a big fan of bashing the education industry. I'd argue that poor test results and low graduation rates are more the result of the breakdown of traditional morality and the nuclear family than poor teaching. This one, however, is completely the fault of the education establishment. These people are flat-out morons when it comes to the trivially simple equations that govern spending. The students taught by these idiots go on to vote, leading to forehead-smackingly stupid results like those in Illinois. At least if parents could use vouchers to send their kids to private schools, they might learn basic economic math from someone other than the brain-dead progressives in the NEA.