Business is not your enemy

September 19th, 2008

Wisconsin blogger Michael Mathias is someone I don’t understand at all.

That’s not to say he’s a bad human being.

We just share hardly any mental common ground.

For example, best viagra sovaldi this morning he had a post that postulated that Milwaukee-area businesses would be thrilled by the failure of Milwaukee Public Schools:

Well Milwaukee’s business community should be delighted:

The Milwaukee School Board voted Thursday night to begin looking into dissolving the Milwaukee Public Schools system.

The completely unexpected 6-to-3 vote followed a gloomy assessment of the short- and long-term financial situation of MPS from Superintendent William Andrekopoulos and several board members.

The resolution called for the administration to examine state and federal guidelines for dissolving the school district and who would be responsible for educating children in Milwaukee if that happened.

Voting for the resolution were board members Danny Goldberg, sildenafil purchase Jennifer Morales, Jeff Spence, Bruce Thompson, Terry Falk and Tim Petersons. Voting against were Peter Blewett, Michael Bonds and Charlene Hardin.

We should be hearing nothing but praise for the move from the usual suspects, right? Isn’t this what Tim Sheehy and the members of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce have been hoping for all these years?

Wasn’t this the desired outcome when we introduced “competition” into the education system by awarding taxpayer dollars to “schools” (i.e. the Little Beating Heart of Academic Excellence Academy) that didn’t have to follows the same standards MPS operates under in either teacher compensation or benefits, or testing or reporting, or educating special education students or students who were disciplinary problems?

To me, this post illustrates two misunderstandings:

  1. Michael doesn’t seem to understand that nothing is more important to a business than educated workers and consumers. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve heard a business owner express dismay that they had to retrain a new hire to do the simplest things. Businesses WANT education to work and businesses are the entities that suffer second most when it does not. (The people who suffer the most are the ones who fail to get/achieve a decent education.)
  2. The second misunderstanding is that business is somehow plotting against the rest of us. That’s just silly. Business is what keeps all of us employed and productive. Government’s depend on business for revenue. Non-profits depend on business for donations. Without business, there would be no goods or services to buy and no salaries to buy them with. Is business perfect? Nope. Are some businesses evil? Yep, because some people are evil and businesses are run by people. But the mere existence of business does incalculably more good in a capitalistic society like ours than it does harm.

    Entry Filed under: Blogs,Milwaukee

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. grumps  |  September 19th, 2008 at 9:35 am

    Businesses will say that they want a well-educated and finely-trained workforce. However, they balk when faced with the costs of that education. Even when their business requires specialized skills or specific vocabulary and curricula they will shy away from providing it themselves.

    They expect that “The Public,” meaning someone else, will pay for training that workforce.

  • 2. Debunked  |  September 19th, 2008 at 11:24 am

    And further, businesses only want as much education as is necessary – and no more.

    They don’t need college educated individuals to screw bolts onto a car frame or to snap together a couple of pieces of plastic at the end of an assembly line.

    And if those people are too educated, they’ll want more money. So the businesses will instead outsource the jobs to other countries with less education and people willing to work for lower pay, thus putting more Americans out of work, the economy weakens, the money system falters, education goes to hell, and the average American is no better off than those in Indonesia willing to work for 50 cents an hour.

    Oh, wait…

  • 3. charliesaurus  |  September 19th, 2008 at 9:35 pm

    Grumps – I got to tell you… It’s not a matter of balking at the price… it’s a matter of staying in business. I run a small business – and find that the more government gets involved – the harder it is to actually keep people employed and keep the doors open.

    In truth, Government doesn’t have to worry about being financially responsible. One vote and *POOF* more money appears with an extra fee here and a sales tax there.

    I can’t magically *POOF* myself more money and business.

    And – I am not impressed by people who get to keep their jobs, regardless of their performance and results. If I do a bad job, no one’s going to make excuses for me. I’ll just go out of business. (Maybe if I was a super-large business, I’d get bailed out… but I digress.)

    And, let’s be honest – It’s just crazy to believe that simply throwing more money at it will fix it. It’s just not that simplistic.

  • 4. Aaron  |  September 20th, 2008 at 9:43 am

    We just share hardly any mental common ground.

    When it comes to understanding the world around me, I’ve got more in common with a salad fork.

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