Wednesday, December 02, 2009

An Immodest Proposal



Wow, seems like you can’t swing a disabled child whose lifetime insurance coverage has been maxed out in this country without hitting some pundit whose take on health insurance reform is based on the notion that using tax dollars to fund universal coverage is akin to having his pocket picked by some deadbeat who is too poor (read lazy) to buy insurance for himself.

I couldn’t agree more. And if US citizens are going to continue to die because they can’t afford to buy the health care their body needs, then excuse me, but they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.

But believe me, the cost of health care is peanuts compared to what US taxpayers are paying to support a system that hasn’t been relevant to their own lives for many, many years. But because the operating budget is primarily comprised of state and local dollars, and only about ten percent on average comes from the federal government, it’s difficult to get the national pundits worked up enough to lobby for its demise.

Of course I’m talking about public education.

Like most responsible adults, I don’t have children. And I fail to see why I should have my pocket picked to pay for the progeny of those less fiscally conscientious than I.

Look readers, I need roads to drive on. I need this fakakta LA freeway system improved so that I can get to work faster. I need the FAA to get its shit together before I have to do any more holiday flying. I need the CDC to get me some of that swine flu vaccine. I need farming subsidies that will quit propping up livestock feed and instead bring down the price of the things I eat, and I really, really, need more public radio and television funding so I don’t have to sit through so many pledge drives.

And while I’m at it, I would like a nice subsidy on a new football stadium so that LA can attract an NFL team, and local meatheads will stay contained in their homes and sports bars on Sunday and stay out of the public places that I like to frequent for one goddamn idiot-free day a week if that’s not too much to ask.

Those are the things I need. And yet my money is going toward an educational system I don’t need anymore, and couldn’t be admitted to even if I did. Say, for instance, I should discover that algebra is useful in life. Well, I’ve forgotten algebra. It’s not my fault. I only have so much memory available, after all, and operating my TV/DVR is not getting easy easier. So, in order to make room in my brain, algebra had to be sacrificed, along with chemistry, world capitals, and pre-WW2 European heads of state. That’s right readers, Franz Ferdinand is just a indie band to me. So what would happen if I showed up at my local high school, and asked for an algebra refresher? I mean, after I was tackled to the ground, frisked, and held for observation? Why, they’d tell me to take a hike, of course, and I’d have to find a way to pay for algebra myself. Whereas, any snot-nosed brat with a pencil and a zip code can walk into their own local completely free-of-charge school and avail him or herself of thirteen years of education that is no longer offered to me – and all on my dime.

So how is that fair? I’m the responsible one. I’m the one not taking off work to watch some badly-performed recital or some soccer game in which one would be hard pressed to determine which side were the more untalented. I’m the one who uses my sick days when I’m sick, and not because my kid’s day care isn’t insured for a fever above 99 degrees. Let’s just say it - I’m the one who figured out how birth control works, and for that I am punished not only with the theft of untold thousands of dollars from my hard-earned salary, but also by having to hear, year after tedious year, about how little good my money is doing, and how generally stupid those ungrateful brats are for the passport to the good life that I am subsidizing for them.

Well, I’m finished being gracious about the whole goddamn thing. Let the fucking rugrats pay for their own goddamn education, and if they can’t, let their parents do it for them. And until they do, I don’t want to hear one more person with children in public school complain about universal health coverage, or unemployment assistance, or the stimulus package, or even the goddamn price of a fucking postage stamp. You free public education people have gotten away with the biggest fucking socialist scam ever pulled on the fine and patient and totally non-hypocritical American public, and I don’t want to hear another peep out of you.

30 comments:

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

YOu are the most brilliant woman I have ever been associated with.

Spooney said...

"Like most responsible adults, I don’t have children"
- that slays me!

Yeah, I say let the breeders pay for their own kids education. They brought them into the world, we didn't. Our taxes can go to try to fix all the problems caused by the over population that they've added to.

Dad E said...

It really pisses me off to see religious organizations given tax free status. I am paying for their right to sprew anti-abortion, anti-condom, anti-gay rights, anti-birth control, anti-evolution, dibble.

kiki said...

not only is this an outrage, it is *gasp* undemocratic

Spooney said...

@Dad E, nicely put!

SkylersDad said...

Through most of the 60's and 70's, the United States lead the world in math, science, and most other scores that mean anything. In 1979, we started to decline in comparison to other countries. What happened in 1979?

The Department of Education was founded.

Coincidence? I think not.

Some Guy said...

I just read this out loud to Megan. Outstanding.

SJ said...

I bitched about taxes before I had children much in the same way. Voted 'NO' for every property tax increase and complained all over the place.

Now I have them (kids, that is), and the truth is that the schools still struggle for money, no matter what they say is happening with our tax dollars. It is especially evident in poor areas. Teachers spend their own money to buy basic things for students. Roads still need fixing, as do schools. It's a scam alright, but I say it's a scam of bureaucracy and politics, more than a public school rip off designed to piss off the childless.

Cathy said...

While we're living in this dream world - I'd like to throw a few more bucks to public libraries, where the entire population is welcome to a free education.

Much fun to read, Vikki and there's a place in my heart for your sentiment, though I subscribe to a it-takes-a-village approach to raising children, even if they aren't my own, and am okay with supporting a public education program for children...not necessarily in it's current form, but in general.

RandyLuvsPaiste said...

"Like most responsible adults, I don’t have children."

Okay, Spooney said it first, but this point cannot be stressed enough.

Coaster Punchman said...

You are the most awesome ranter. Really. "Like most responsible adults, I don’t have children." Beautiful!

Doc said...

"I’m the one who figured out how birth control works"

Sorry. I had a moment of weakness and Flannery tempted me. Twice.

Doc

Flannery Alden said...

Doc, I believe we both took leave of our senses at the same time...twice. Very irresponsible.


And great rant, V, as usual! And why not give grown-ups the chance to go back for an algebra refresher? I think that would be a great idea...

Poplicola said...

It's OK, you can keep your filthy local money. It's chump change anyway. Out here in 951, our paltry local coffers had so utterly failed our schools that we were able to apply to the state for emergency funds and WOW! New paint for all the schools! Buildings in place of trailers! A whole new high school!

Your semi-local money got me old text books and rusty chain link fencing. Now we're living fat on the deep pockets of Yreka and Placerville. Everybody gets a laptop!

Nice swing at the Yiddish, by the way. That seems to be going around.

vikkitikkitavi said...

@all: Since the topic of funding has been broached, let me state that I would favor a bill that would allow the Department of Education to storm the Pentagon and take over all its resources, including its budget. I would then force the states to equalize public school funding, and make illegal the kind of shenanigans that allows richer districts to re-tile their swimming pools every year, while poorer districts in the same city struggle to buy electricity for their metal detectors.

Being the product of a public education, my opinion is that all you really need for a good education is a good teacher. It's a gross generalization, and yet also true. If it were up to me, I'd give all the education funds to the teachers, and raise their salaries so high that everyone would want to be one. All other solutions (the ability to fire bad teachers) would flow from that.

It is sadly true that Americans, who worship celebrities as gods, no longer want to work in any profession that requires thinking. Kids only want to be athletes and pop stars. No one is studying math or science. I have worked for many technology firms, and it's a given that if you have a scientific or engineering position open, you will have exactly zero qualified American applicants. They simply don't exist. Companies don't particularly want to hire foreigners - they are, when you add in legal costs, more expensive than hiring Americans, plus they usually turn out to be sort of an HR nightmare - but they have no choice.

vikkitikkitavi said...

@ Skydad: Hm...I graduated from public school in 1979. I hope it wasn't something I did. I do remember leaving some stinky socks in my locker as a sort of "fuck you" to my dumb-ass high school, but I never dreamed my prank would have such wide-reaching consequences.

Seriously, though, to think that most local school boards would be doing a stellar job if not for some do-nothing federal monkey office, then you're giving local school boards WAYYYYYYYYYYYYY too much credit.

vikkitikkitavi said...

@Pops: Every year, as I contemplate my Federal tax refund, and whether it will be enough to cover WHAT I STILL OWE the state of CA, I wonder what on earth they could be doing with so much money. Now I know. I'm sorry, but I'm not buying your explanation by way of Placerville. That's my money your school board is spending, and if I lose my house because my unemployed ass can't make the payments, I'm coming to live in those new, nicely-painted buildings, even if it is in 951.

Jess said...

Ever see the movie "Idiocracy?" It's basically about how intelligent people had fewer & fewer children while the un-educated mouth breathers were having more and more. Until the world was filled with stupid people. Um, it's kinda happening. You MIGHT say that you're being irresponsible for NOT having kids and trying to stem the flow of future wife beaters & idiots currently being born. Just sayin'.

kirby said...

I have a twofer solution for you. Let's sell the kids that fail their high school exit exam into white slavery, and use the profits to fund public radio and end the fund drives. Now that's a win/win situation.

kittens not kids said...

Kirby: I am breathless with the brilliance of your suggestion to end those cussed fund drives!

Vikki: "I'm the one who figured out how birth control works" - FINALLY, someone has the metaphorical balls to say this! finally!

as the child of public school teachers, and a devotee of education myself, i cannot tell you how unbelievably pissed off I get when people complain about how much teachers get paid. This is a common complaint where I come from, often from people who make well into the six figures, while my dad, who taught 12-year-olds for 35 years and held a master's degree, capped out around $65,000. that was *at the end* of those 35 years.

storm the pentagon, and redistribute some of that pointless wealth. *I* don't want to pay for THAT shit; where's the defense spending opt-out amendment?

SJ said...

We all have our soapboxes out at the ready on issues, it's true, you know, how some of us get pissed off when the right wingers want to opt out of their tax dollars going to fund 'those people' who'd rather get food stamps than work. Or they bitch about their tax dollars going to help Katrina victims. After all, they aren't poor, why should they pay for those who are? Plus, I'm glad your parents are responsible people. Otherwise, there'd be no you.

vikkitikkitavi said...

@Jess: History is full of examples of wealthy and intelligent families that breed themselves into an intellectual corner. One need only look to the Hilton family to see that dynamic at work. Rather than continue our own risky breeding schemes, I propose that we adopt more superior stock. Chinese females, statistically proven to be the most intelligent demographic on the face of the earth, are still readily available as infants for import into the US at bargain prices. As far as I can tell, they require only room, board, and a minimum state university-level education.

By depriving China of its females, we benefit twofold: first, we inhibit their ability to breed, and secondly, we boost our own stock, genetically.

Being only first generation from poor stupid white trash myself, I understand that poor Americans can acheive intellectual superiority, however, the price might be too steep for future generations to bear. The Chinese thing is a safer bet.

Jess said...

Actually, I looked into adopting a Chinese baby, and it's incredibly expensive (over $20K), very difficult (as it should be), takes a LOOOOONG time, and it's becoming less and less common as girls are becoming more valued in China, believe it or not.

The whole "just go to China to adopt" thing just isn't happening anymore. That's why people are adopting from Africa more and more.

Honestly, that's one of the reasons we tried so hard to have our OWN baby. We couldn't afford to adopt.

vikkitikkitavi said...

@Jess: I was just kidding.

Zoe Wiseman said...

What I find interesting is that you think you need an algebra refresher when in fact without the knowledge of algebra you wouldn't have been able to relate all this socialistic nonsense on so many different levels and bring it all together in harmony. Yes, without algebra knowledge you would just be one of those tea party brats that keep saying that a public option is wrong because the rich guys taxes are going to rise. X definitely does not = Y.

hearts.

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SJ said...

Huh. just mention a Chinese baby and you get Chinese spam. Are you listening, FBI? Do something!

Moderate Democrat said...

Vicky:

You make a Great Case for a Tax on the Sex Act to subsudize Public Schools. Such a Tax should be assessd like a User Fee. Here's what I have in mind.

Women should be required to wear special Chastity Belts. These Chastity Belts will have timers on them, which will be turned on when a Token is inserted into them, each token being unique to each Chastity Belt. These Tokens can be purchased from a Federal Quality of Life Agent who will assess their value by the Desirability of the Woman and her likelyhood of getting Pregnant. For example, a 25 year old Married Beauty Queen's token would cost $10,000 whereas a 50 year old bag's token would go for a quarter. All proceeds would then go to the General Education Fund.

You can find a Governmental Solution if you just look for it!

Larry Jones said...

Need more Vikki now.

dguzman said...

Can I just have YOU for a teacher?