People throughout the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex have been mailbox-bombed by up to six (!) bright, shiny, slick, professionally produced oversized “post cards” from the (desperate?) International Leadership of Texas (ILTex). The biggest headline on these cards says “Free Public Charter School.” These four words strung together no doubt caused instant mirth in the minds of every libertarian in the area. Take each word one at a time and see why.
1. Nothing is Free. Someone, somewhere, somehow must pay for whatever is claimed to be free.
2. Public means that every person who pays taxes funds whatever is public but only a small cadre of people with access to taxpayer money and political power actually have control over, and are thereby the primary beneficiaries of, that public thing.
3. Hence, the concept of “Free Public” is an oxymoron. This applies to every school; one is either public – paid for by taxpayers – or it is private – paid for by voluntary choice. Note too that in our society people who voluntarily pay for private schools are simultaneously forced to pay for public schools as well, so “free” truly is a meaningless concept.
4. The word Charter in the heading is explained by the subheading, “Approved by the Texas State Board of Education.” Any school that needs “approval” from a tax-funded state entity is “public” and therefore not “free.”
The purpose of this school with campus locations scattered across North Texas (and one in Houston) is to “prepare students for exceptional leadership roles in the international community.” To that end kids will, according to the “Our Mission” header, be “mastering the English, Spanish, and Chinese languages.”
Yet under the “Trilingual Education” subhead they will “learn fluency in Spanish and Chinese.” So what happened to “English?” Does this mean that kids coming out of our Free Public Taxpayer-Funded Government-Controlled Academically Liberal No Child Left Behind Common Core Takes A Village schools are already “fluent” in English? Really?
(Since there is no such thing as a “Chinese language” – it’s a “macro language” that includes 13 sub- languages – they change this to “Mandarin” on the reverse side of their post card. The ILTexas Marketing & Recruitment Department can’t seem to get its “trilingualism” right.)
ILTex want’s all you parents to enroll your kiddos in their elitist school. Libertarian, Objectivist and other individualist-minded parents should be aware that (1) since ILTex is using tax money their program isn’t voluntary, and (2) the school’s motto is “Others Before Self” and they’re frequently “emphasizing servant leadership.” At this point those parents might ask who exactly these “Others” are that are more important than themselves, and who their offspring will really be serving; the politicians? The corporatist? The bankster? The academics?
Google searching reveals that both the collectivist anti-market left and the collectivist religionist right equally embrace servant-leadership. So hurry! All who believe that character and leadership require altruism, self-sacrifice, community service, a social consciousness, the surrender of one’s unique being to somebody’s “greater good” and the beehive mentality of groupthink must register their progeny by March 31. The ILTexas folks expect to be overwhelmed with applications so they plan to sort the chaff from the chaff on April 6 by holding a Student Lottery. A lottery; how’s that for being treated like a selfless nonentity?
Politically inclined Libertarians might want to skip “servant leadership” and look into “Libertarian Leadership” instead.