Education & Healthcare: Commentaries

Two of the largest ticket items that Vermonters are being taxed on is primary education and healthcare. For decades, the Legislature has consistently consolidated power in Montpelier, which necessarily limits community and individual choices around these vital government services. We believe decentralizing decision making authority will give Vermonters more control over their personal lives

All Commentaries

Commentary: Public school democracy, voice vs. choice

New departures in sex education and union-promoted Critical Race Theory in the public schools are raising the temperature of parents and school board. Objecting parents should have the option they have at the college level: parent-empowered K-12 school choice.

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Commentary: The Teachers’ Union’s New Pupil Indoctrination Plan

           The National Education Association’s assembly has passed two startling resolutions, to push the union’s ideology of racial justice and equity, anti-capitalism, and white oppression into the public school classroom. The “remedy” of concerned citizens regaining control of curriculums only rarely succeeds. A better solution: let objecting parents send their children to independent schools, taking a large fraction of their public school equalized per pupil cost of education with them.

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Commentary: Let’s Grow Kids, or Let’s Grow Government?

Lawmakers recently passed a bill that begins the process for a major expansion of state-subsidized childcare for birth to five-year-olds rolled out over the next few years. The new law, crafted and pushed by the special interest group Let’s Grow Kids, could have major negative consequences for children, families, and taxpayers.

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Commentary: Three Lawsuits That Will Change Vermont Education

Three lawsuits now in progress are likely to expand parental choice in Vermont education. Rather than dealing with “an evolving and murky legal landscape”, the legislature should reform our laws to incorporate the new legal requirements into a well-conceived parental choice - provider competition model. 

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Commentary: Fed Crackdown on Failing VT Special Ed

The US Department of Education (USDE) recently found that Vermont is one of only two states which “needs intervention in implementing the requirements of Part B Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).” This shatters the myth that Vermont offers disabled students a superior education.

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Commentary: It’s Time to Rethink Failing Health Care Policies

Vermont ‘s All Payer performance , widely criticized , will almost certainly fall short of HHS agreement requirements in 2022. It’s time to move away from ever-increasing government management, and develop a demonstrably superior path of personal responsibility, informed patient choice, provider competition, price transparency, less third party payment , diminished regulation, liability restraint and outcome accountability.

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Commentary: Closing the Educational Performance Gap

A discouraging report from the American Enterprise Institute finds that the expenditure of billions of new dollars on public education has done almost nothing to close the reading and math gap between higher- and lower-income students.  Maybe we should be looking for more promising alternatives. 

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Commentary: False Alarm, The Supreme Court and the Affordable Care Act

U.S Senate Democrats are claiming that a conservative Supreme Court will end Obamacare coverage for 20 million Americans. This is shameless fearmongering. The horrors they so stridently predict will simply not materialize.

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Commentary: Free Exercise and Faith-Based Schools

A Supreme Court ruling in a Montana case finds that the government’s failure to pay tuition for children attending faith based schools is an unacceptable burden on “free exercise of religion”. That opens the door to tuitioning to such schools in Vermont, and vitiating our “no compelled support” constitutional provision.

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Commentary: If Public Schools Can't Deliver, Their Budgets Need to Fund Alternatives

A number of public school teachers and administrators have recently raised serious concerns about re-opening schools this fall. Harwood Union Superintendent, Brigid Nease, just penned a 2225 word letter sounding the alarm about the overwhelming challenges facing the system. Then on July 30, the House Education Committee held a three plus hour special meeting to hear from school officials about how they are preparing to open for the coming school year. All indications are this experiment it won’t end well.

The principals don’t even know if they have enough staff to open. One superintendent did a survey and 50% of her staff were either high risk for Covid or lived with someone who is. Teachers are waiting to hear what the plan is before they decide if they’ll take part or part ways.

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Commentary: Really Affordable Health Care

Candidates continue to promise “affordable health care”, but on close inspection that translates to “I promise to make the government transfer your health care costs to somebody else.” India’s Narayana Health City actually does make surgery affordable, with modern Western techniques and comparable results. There a CABG operation goes for an all-in bundled price of $12,000 (plus $10,000 airfare for two). In the U.S. the tab is $100,000 or more.  Wake up, America!

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Commentary: Singapore, A Useful Health Care Model

Singapore’s health care system, dating back to 1955, works wonderfully well. Clearly this small city state differs in many ways from the US, but there are many useful principles and practices we could take from its successful forced savings plan.

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