Saturday, May 14, 2011

On The Road Again?

In traveling about the state attempting to sell his budget at 17 Town Halls meetings, Governor Dannel Malloy may not have heard from Phil (not his real name). He’s an engineer, and engineers tend to maintain low profiles – unless you uncork them.

Dilbert, the much read and much loved comic character in the strip by Scott Adams, is an engineer, a worker hero constantly grappling with the vagaries of business in the good old US of A.

Phil's e-mail began with a reference to budget passed in the General Assembly and affirmed – with some significant changes – by a coalition of union leaders over the weekend. Phil is a stickler on what he calls “the math” of the budget. His emails are here reproduced in full and untouched.

Subject: gotta love it

I love reading about Democrats who have the courage to raise taxes.

I'm still having trouble with Malloy's math. So delaying raises for 2 years equals 1.6 Billion? The details to be named later should be interesting.

Some day you should do a piece how many students in Eastern Ct, especially those near Norwich Free Academy have School choice.

Districts that don't have a high school (they are too small to support a school) have their choice of a number of schools.

The high schools actually come in and market to the prospective students and their parents.

It's really amazing.
I wrote back that “vouchers would have the same effect.”

A voucher system would allow parents to shop around for the best school. And best schools would be showered with money, while the poorer schools would whither on the vine. Start up schools would incorporate into their curricula the best practices of the best schools because, in the good old US of A – everywhere but in public education -- we measure success by sprinkling it with money.

And we know what miracles the powerful aphrodisiac of success produces:

Every success involves considerable risk. And every attempt to eliminate risk in behalf of security is a nail in the coffin of success. You can’t take your chances by eliminating chances.

Subject: Re: gotta love it

They actually listen to the parents and develop programs to meet the parents/students needs.

It’s a model that has been ongoing and working for decades.

We are thinking of moving to be in Norwich Free Academy's district, my wife went there.

But we are also trying to figure out how to leave the state. Our house is the big factor: It’s not just a matter of what price, but IF it can sell.

I work for [a large aeospace company], we can't find Aerospace Engrs in Ct, we can find Aerospace Engrs outside of Ct, but we can't convince them to move to Ct.

How sad is that? We invented Aerospace engineering in Ct.
I wrote back: “That pretty much says it all. Can I use the content of your letter -- without mentioning you, of course?”

Permission granted.
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