October 7, 2011
"… . What is striking about this in Perry’s case—and indeed in the case of many tea party candidates—is that they no longer seem to feel any need to even offer lip service to the notion that education is important to building success and opportunities for peoples’ lives. Where once the notion was that getting a good education was key to creating and maintaining a large middle class in America, now the emphasis is on boot strapping one’s way to the top. Indeed, many tea party types seem resentful that their tax dollars are used to educate “others” at all—whether illegal immigrants, or the poor who “belong” here. Education is a “cost” to be limited or eliminated, not a “good” that pays itself back in untold and often immeasurable ways… ."

I’m with you (and Perry) on the illegal immigrant issue, as I’ve posted here before. First draft = incomplete. But Texas, like many states, is slashing support for higher ed, increasingly pricing it out of the reach of more and more people. (My own university has almost tripled tuition and fees in the last 10 years in the face of staggering budget cuts—and no, we haven’t seen big pay increases, fancy offices or big time sports here. It’s about a dollar for dollar swap, with tuition paying for cuts in state support.)

Also, the business groups Perry relying on for his reform proposals seem dedicated to the proposition that college is little more than jobs training … and given that Google did not exist the year I joined my current university (1994), I question the notion that a university can train someone to a job. We’re trying to help people develop an array of skills that can help them with a globalized world and to do jobs that don’t exist yet. And I’m not sure Perry believes that.

Politicalprof: Why Rick Perry’s Grades May Matter …

 Wait … isn’t Perry taking flak for supporting in-state tuition for non-legal residents?  And hasn’t Perry been pushing hard for a $10,000 college degree, precisely because he feels eduction is extremely important, and that it out to be affordable for everyone?  You can blast certain elements of the Tea Party all you want about this, but lumping Perry into the mix seems unfair to me.  He’s arguably been more focused on the importance of a college education than our President.

I’m no Perry supporter, and there are plenty of legitimate grounds that ought to disqualify Perry from office.  This isn’t one of them.

(via jeffmiller)

(via jeffmiller)

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