Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Latest Offerings

"TGIF: The Common Sense of 'Common Sense'"
"Yes to Recriminations Against Iraq Policymakers"


Roderick T. Long said...

In related news, many working-class people in England learned to read solely in order to be able to read Rights of Man! No wonder the British government tried to have it suppressed.

Sheldon Richman said...

What? They didn't wait for England to set up public schools? Everyone knows you can't learn to read without public schools.

James Greenberg said...

Sheldon, I understand very well from the freedom angle your arguments about public schools (compulsory education is inferior to voluntary education, as with all things compulsory/voluntary).

I just wanted to point out that there are other factors at work that inhibit an individual's ability to learn to read -- socioeconomic, ethnic/cultural, native intelligence, etc.

While many of these issues overlap with freedom, even in a free-market educational system there would be individuals who would either fail to learn to read or choose not to learn.

I don't mean to begin an argument, for we mostly agree on the subject. I wholeheartedly agree that free schools are better than coercive schools. I just wanted to point out that, especially in SoCal, ethnic groups such as Hispanics are documented as being more resistant to reading and education in general than Asians and Whites, and that even the best free education system might have difficulty penetrating that cultural barrier.

Granting that free education is better than coercive education, and understanding that the point is freedom not results, have you ever tried to estimate or quantify how much more improved the system would be in a free-market? I know it's near impossible, but that could form the basis for a persuasive debate.

Sheldon Richman said...

James, free-market education doesn't guarantee results. It simply assures the maximum entrepreneurship and innovation. (I don't see how that could be quantified.) What people do with the services offered depends, as you say, on many things. Reading, however, is not one of the tougher things people learn growing up.