Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Competitive Markets Mean Better Products at Lower Costs ... More on the Good News of Indiana Supreme Court's Ruling on School Vouchers

Competitive markets result in better product offerings and lower costs for those products and services being offered --- higher quality at a lesser price than monopolies would provide.

Those competitors who are able to offer that winning combination to free choosing customers manage to stay in business. Those who fail to do so eventually close their doors. The customer always wins, and the relative cost and quality equation always improves.

And that cost and quality improvement will now come to ALL Indiana schools (public and private alike) because of yesterday's Indiana Supreme Court ruling upholding legislation which allows school vouchers for families whose household income is below a certain prescribed level.

For those families of modest income whose children opt out of attending public schools, the taxpayer supported vouchers will range from 50% to 90% of the amount taxpayers would pay if those children had chosen to remain as students in Indiana's public school system. In other words, through the 'magic' of competitive markets and free choice, We the People will win again.

That is, everybody will win except the teachers unions, of course. You see, my bet is that the public schools will show considerable performance improvement as well. It's an existential thing as markets work to the benefit of customers and the better competitors.

On the other hand, monopolies don't work that way at all. That's why we're in the mess we're in with the government knows best monopolistic system of public education that we have now. Happily, that's about to change in Indiana.

Of course, the teachers union is loudly crying foul to allowing parents and students to have anything to say about which schools their children will attend, but that's not surprising. The unions don't represent the kids or their parents, and they have no vested interest in the quality of the education that the kids receive.

Indiana Voucher Victory is subtitled 'Unions lose another challenge to school reform for the poor:'

"Indiana passed one of the nation's most ambitious education reforms in 2011, so naturally teachers unions sued to kill it. The unions lost big Tuesday when the Indiana Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the state's Choice Scholarship Program is constitutional.

The Indiana State Teachers Association and the National Education Association sued to stop the statewide program, which allows families with household income below 150% of school lunch eligibility to receive vouchers equal to between 50% and 90% of state per-pupil education funding to use at any school. According to the lawsuit in Meredith v. Pence, letting families use the vouchers at religious schools violated the state constitution's religion clauses.

Ah, no. The Indiana constitution says "No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." But under the Choice Scholarship Program, state dollars go directly to parents who decide where to spend it.

"We find it inconceivable," the justices wrote, that the framers meant to prohibit government spending from which a religious institution could ultimately benefit. Everything from police protection to city sidewalks benefit religious institutions, but "the primary beneficiary is the public," and any benefits to religious groups are "ancillary and indirect," said the ruling. "The direct beneficiaries under the voucher program are the families of eligible students and not the schools selected by the parents for their children to attend.". . .

As for the unions, they've shown again their concern is their own power, not the well-being of students."

Summing Up

Congratulations to the parents and students of Indiana's K-12 schools.

And yesterday's ruling also is a good opportunity for We the People to learn more about who unions really want to help and who they could care less about assisting, either educationally or financially.

Hint: For the unions, it's not about helping the parents, students or the taxpayers.

For the unions, it's all about the power and prestige of the union leadership and union revenues, aka membership dues.

Thanks. Bob.

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