George Will, sometime libertarian, writes:
>In today’s political taxonomy, “progressives” are rebranded liberals dodging the damage they did to their old label. Perhaps their most injurious idea — injurious to themselves and public schools — was the forced busing of (mostly other people’s) children to engineer “racial balance” in public schools. Soon, liberals will need a third label if people notice what “progressives” are up to in Utah.
>There, teachers unions, whose idea of progress is preservation of the status quo, are waging an expensive and meretricious campaign to overturn the right of parents to choose among competing schools, public and private, for the best education for their children.
The “campaign” they’re waging involves a referendum on a school choice law. People can vote for it and people can vote against it. But people can choose private schools right now if they can afford them. But more basically, “meretricious” is not a term Will, what with his perpetual dishonesty about anyone’s view but his own, ought to be using. Of him, one might say:
>Intellectually bankrupt but flush with cash. . .
But that was his line (later in the piece). The idea that there is a right to choose among competing schools (some of them–nay the majority of them–religious) using public money is an astounding one–especially for a simple-minded constitutional minimalist, such as Will is (when it comes to the limiting rights of other people). Indeed, allowing parents to take public tax money to private schools, one might reasonably argue, greatly expands the reach of the government into the private sector: private schools, what with their “competitive” edge, are now public schools. Do they need federal money to compete?