Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Logic Loopholes

Does anyone remember the Arsenio Hall Show from the 90’s?  He used to do a segment on his late night talk show called “Things that make you say hmmmmm”.  So here goes some random thoughts and questions regarding our current educational situation:  

  • Why is it that Oklahoma politicians insist on reducing the income tax rate so as to remain competitive with surrounding states, but they don’t seem to want to remain competitive with surrounding states on teacher salaries and educational investment?
  • Why is our Governor remaining absolutely silent on the current financial crisis? 
  • The Governor and the DOK want everyone to believe a low personal and a low corporate tax rate was the cause for General Electric to move their corporate headquarters from Connecticut to Boston Massachusetts.   https://www.cga.ct.gov/2013/rpt/2013-R-0301.htm If this is true, then why didn’t GE move to Oklahoma?  Oklahoma’s personal income tax rate is lower than both of those states (http://taxfoundation.org/state-tax-climate/oklahoma), and in Oklahoma GE could have qualified for a 5 year tax free exemption?  If not Oklahoma, then why not any one of the 7 states with zero personal income tax?  http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2014/04/26/these-states-have-no-income-tax/8116161/
  • Why does the Governor automatically discount the quality of schools in Massachusetts as a reason for why GE moved its corporate headquarters?
  • Why is it that proponents of school choice think the only way to get people to choose better schools is to give them money, but they think that giving schools money is the worst way to improve a school?
  • Why is it that some politicians want close schools based on the number of students instead of the quality of education inside those schools?
  • Why is it that some politicians want to close rural schools but expand charter schools?
  • Why is it that politicians lament about “off the top” money and tax incentives being problematic for Oklahoma but have yet to vote to stop “off the top” money or end any tax incentives?
  • If Educational Savings Accounts (AKA Vouchers) are so important to the expansion of school choice options and the improvement of educational opportunities for low income students, then why won’t politicians find a funding mechanism outside of stealing money from public schools to pay for it?
  • Speaking of ESA’s (it’s still a voucher), why is it politicians feel the need to change the name to make it sound better for Oklahomans?  If people didn’t want to spend public dollars on private schools who do not have to follow public accountability practices when they were called a voucher, why do politicians think calling them an ESA makes for better policy?
  • If a private school doesn’t have to follow Oklahoma public school law, then what makes people think private schools will accept public school kids?
Things that make me go hmmmmmm….how about you?

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