My suggestion on how to talk about school choice.

While I like Jim Geraghty’s point, here (spoiler warning: he and I think that ‘C’ is the best way to put this):

Which argument is likely to be most effective?

A) School choice is a good idea because it is consistent with the conservative principles that the government that is closest to the people is most likely to make the best decisions, is most accountable for those decisions, and is easiest to correct those decisions.

B) School choice is a good idea because it is consistent with the libertarian principles that the power of the state should be limited and the power of the individual should be maximized.

C) School choice is a good idea because it puts decisions in the hands of parents, who know what is best for their children.

…I think that C can be punchier:

C) School choice is a good idea because you know best about what your kids need.

If I want outside opinions on a good, personal educational policy for my kids – and I often do, in fact – I know how to ask for them, thanks. Until then: it’s my child.  Heck, comes right down to it it’s my village and nobody in it speaks for me unless I’m all right with that.

Moe Lane

4 thoughts on “My suggestion on how to talk about school choice.”

  1. Embracing the power of ‘and’, Moe? Good plan.
    There is no reason conservatives and libertarians must disagree on this, it’s just a matter of getting the scales out of the eyes of the more hidebound of both ideologies.

  2. While reforming the educational system is essential, I’m pretty sure we’ll end the Federal Reserve System, the Public Broadcasting System, and the National Endowment for the Arts before we manage it.
    We managed to get some education reform done here last decade. (They were fairly minor, low hanging fruit, but so was Grenada.)
    There was OUTRAGE!
    Our Legislative and Executive actually held firm for several years.
    Then with data in hand clearly showing that the reforms had improved education outcomes while also reducing expenditures, they let the question go to referendum.
    Like I said, the reforms were low-hanging fruit. Uncontroversial things that poll-tested well. The tidal wave of ads against them refused to even address the content of the laws. Instead, there was hysteria.
    It was effective.
    We got absolutely destroyed. Most of the laws were overturned by a supermajority. (The rest were overturned by just shy of a supermajority.)

  3. If you are dealing with someone who adheres to conservative or libertarian identity, you start with C (Loudly if need be) then add A or B depending on what side they are on.
    Non political animals should only get C and be counterattacked if they insist that you don’t know what’s best.

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