Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

March 7, 2014

March 7, 2014: Letters to the editor

Kokomo Tribune

---- — Draft standards: wolf in sheep’s clothing

2014 started with great optimism for thousands of concerned parents, grandparents and many educators from around the state. The governor spoke of his support for “uncommonly high standards written by Hoosiers for Hoosiers”; the General Assembly was moving towards dropping the highly controversial and swiftly adopted Common Core Standards from 2010; the State Board of Education and Department of Education announced they would work cooperatively together to produce a new set of standards that would be fair and exceed the requirements mandated in HEA 1427.

Now it is early March, and after three days of public testimony on the new draft standards the only area of agreement between the advocates of Common Core from 2010 and the opponents of Common Core is the draft standards are “remarkably similar” to Common Core! This cut and paste result is a huge betrayal to the hundreds of citizens and supportive legislators who have worked for months to not only retain our state’s educational sovereignty but to produce educational standards that are “uncommonly” high and truly prepare children for their careers or college.

The State Board of Education is the first state board in the country that has committed to a better set of standards, but time is running out. The education industry has historically fallen prey to jumping on the bandwagon of unproven, untested ideas such as Common Core. None of us would expose our children to medications that haven’t gone through years of trials and FDA approvals. Why are we willing to continue to use our children as educational lab rats when it comes to ideas such as Common Core? In the coming months the SBOE, DOE, governor and General Assembly are going to have to decide which side they plan to serve, the educational industry or the concerned citizens and the children of this state? We trust they will make the right decision but we will also verify.

David Read


Capitalistic greed must be reined in

Capitalism, the prevailing economic system in industrialized countries, is a free market system of private ownership, capital accumulation, control of industrial production, labor compensated by wages, with the goal of maximizing profits — making money.

One of man’s sins, greed — a primary capitalistic driver — is elevated to a virtue when operating within moral and legal limits and will raise living standards in America. Capitalistic greed is allowed to operate within our country by permission of our government and regulations set forth by our elected representatives who are legally bound to do what’s best for American citizens.

Inherit in our capitalistic system of greed are economic boom-bust cycles along with a constant move towards monopolies in the quest to maximize profits. In order to maintain our country’s living standards, it’s our government’s job to set forth policies to prevent wide economic fluctuations, keep greed within boundaries set forth, and deter the formation of monopolies.

As one elected official said, “they walk the halls of Congress like gods.” The super-rich can buy anyone or anything, in effect making up their own laws as they go. These all-powerful beings are driven by greed; they are not only able to influence/purchase our elected representatives, but they will be able to purchase/privatize portions of our government, like Social Security, Medicare, schools, prisons, and even force the post office to fail and eventually be sold to them at bargain prices.

Our elected officials and Supreme Court justices need to start doing their jobs, representing the American people, turning away from the greed causing our government to be dysfunctional. They need to reverse decisions/laws that unbridled greed has brought to our country and establish new parameters for our capitalistic economy.

Larry Brooks