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  •  It is not "we" who have abandoned public schools, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    drmah

    ... it is the fraction of America that turned its back on public education when the classrooms were desegregated.

    Right about the time humans were walking on the moon.

    They fled into the arms of parochial schools and "Christian academies" to insure that their children would be educated in an all-white cocoon.

    Then they began to resent the taxes they paid to educated "other people's" children, and they bought into the pro-bible, anti-science agenda of their sponsoring denominations.

    Today, public school spending, teachers unions and teachers themselves are vilified by corporate interests who want to divert public revenues into private pockets. They have allied with religious institutions with the same agenda, and the original motive - racism - is almost forgotten.

    Have you noticed?
    Politicians who promise LESS government
    only deliver BAD government.

    by jjohnjj on Sun Mar 03, 2013 at 05:04:19 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Almost forgotten or almost accomplished? (0+ / 0-)
    •  That's not what happened in a lot of the country (0+ / 0-)

      In California it had very little to do with any of that.  The schools' disproportionate dependence on property tax revenues resulted in their strangulation when property tax "reform" came through in the late 1970s,  

      •  I attribute Prop-13 to racism, too. (0+ / 0-)

        It came right on the heels of a huge school-busing fight in Los Angeles County.

        California under Pat Brown had been an "early adopter" of desegregated employment and housing. Conservatives began molding white racial resentment into a general animosity toward "big government" starting with Reagan's first run for Governor.

        By 1978, voters were stressed by inflation and alarmed over property taxes as real estate values soared (due to speculation by investors seeking to outrun inflation).

        Sacramento had solutions, but was slow to act. Prop-13's meat-axe approach appealed to our racist neighbors because they were already "fed up" with a state government that had integrated their workplaces, neighborhoods, and schools over the previous two decades.

        Those trademark photos of Howard Jarvis shaking his fist at the camera tell me that the Prop-13 campaign was aimed at an undercurrent of anger that went way beyond taxes.

        Subconsciously, a lot of folks voted for Prop-13 just to stop the government from taking "my" money and giving it to "those" people... the schools be damned.

        Have you noticed?
        Politicians who promise LESS government
        only deliver BAD government.

        by jjohnjj on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 12:53:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, partly, But the inflation/housing bubble (0+ / 0-)

          was putting a lot of pressure on people, esp seniors on fixed incomes.  I lived in California then and do not recall a particular racist resentment to the Prop 13 campaign but rather a resentment of gov't taking people's money at what was a steadily increasing rate.  Seniors were again resentful as the $$ went so heavily to schools and their kids were mostly long out of them.  

          But there was definitely a play to resentment at many levels, race and xenophobia among those.  Recall that those were the days when tens of thousands of Southeast Asian refugees were making So Cal their new home.

          California foolishly was very dependent on property taxes to fund their schools and local governments.  Property owners were (and are) much more likely to vote, and tend to be more conservative and older.  Prop 13 passed, then school bond measures began failing all over the state (a 2/3 majority of voters had to approve), and as these were local elections, property owners were heavily over represented.

          The ongoing tragedy of Prop 13 is that the devils sneaked in a Trojan Horse.  While all the hype was about poor seniors' dwindling resources being appropriated by Big Gov, the real $$$ had to do with commercial real estate, which was also included in the Prop 13 prop tax limits.  As a result of accounting and title shenanigans, whereby some continuity of apparent ownership could continue even when properties were sold, many commercial properties are paying taxes on the assessed value of as of 1978.   I can't imagine how much this has cost the state, local governments, and schools.

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