Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Quote of the Day:

"The founding fathers were wise enough to keep the government out of religion, but not wise enough to keep the government out of education." -Les Jones

I submit that the Founding Fathers simply couldn't imagine anything so ridiculously far-fetched as compulsory, tax-financed kiddie farms.


Jonathan said...

John Adams believed in public schools.

In the Massachusetts constitution, Adams included a provision for the government to fund public schools. It was passed.

You can't say the Founding Fathers never conceived of Public education. For Adams, public education was a priority to a thriving republic.

Anonymous said...

So, What you're saying is..... Massachusetts has been Socialist from the very beginning?

Anonymous said...

Uh, jimbob, "socialism" didn't exist in 1776.

Many of the Founders and their contemporaries believed that an educated electorate was essential if their Republic was to survive. So public schooling has been a part of the Republic from its inception. The Northwest Ordinance, under which the old Northwest Territory was organized into proto-states (Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, etc.) specified that a part of every township organized in the Territory had to be set aside for school buildings.

Anonymous said...

jimbob: socialism has always existed, just not necessarily by that name, or with all of the current details. Governments--dating back to the first time Ogg hit Thag over the head with a rock, and figured that gave him some kind of authority--have held to the view that they know best, and everybody had best defer to their plans for handing stuff out.

That said, Jefferson also believed in public schooling. I've no doubt he'd be appalled at the current incarnation, but the idea of having schooling available to all would seem to be a useful thing for a public-participation system. If you have an unschooled electorate, you end up with, well, ... look around.

Weetabix said...

I think what the FF's couldn't conceive of was a set of evil overlords deliberately warping their young charges for their own selfish political ends.

And I don't think there's very much tinfoil in that hat.

staghounds said...

The FF (funny to refer to Warren Harding originated terms in two comments in a row) certainly COULD conceive of such a thing, and did.

That was the point of the establishment clause, because in history up to that time, "evil overlords deliberately warping their young charges for their own selfish political ends" had generally been connected with religion. Most glaringly the Papist one.

The borders we claim to be able to see or draw between religion, ideology, and politics were at that time not so believed in. And still aren't in great swathes of the population. Islam, the Vatican, Pat Robertson...