Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 557, February 14, 2010

"The path of agorism is not easy."

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An Optical Illusion
by Rob Sandwell

Attribute to The Libertarian Enterprise

I wanted to share something perfectly delightful with you.

school sign

See that? It's an optical illusion.

This is an honest to god picture I took of an elementary school sign in my hometown. And I took it on the 26th, so judging by the phrase, "22 REPORT CARD GO HOME," I'm assuming this was up for at least 5 days by the time I took the picture. Probably more.

Do you see the illusion?

It's the illusion of a good education.

It's the illusion of opportunities for our children.

It's the illusion of your tax dollars being put to good use.

It's the illusion that a school which can't even spell the word "goal" can somehow teach our children anything of any value at all which they can then go forth and use to advance their fortunes in a world replete with violence and corruption.

This is the institution that so many use as the first and most important argument against the concept of voluntarism. This is the sacred cow that statists all throughout history have pointed to in an attempt to discredit and disquiet the advocates of anarchism.

A government school which can't even spell a simple four letter word. It brings a few other four letter words to mind.

Now, I know some people will argue that this is a simple mistake, and that it is hardly any real proof, or even strong evidence, that public schools are as vile and dangerous as most anarchists would say they are. And of course, that's a valid response.

One poorly spelled sign outside one elementary school hardly makes the case all on its own. Even if that sign is almost definitely put up by an employee of that institution. An employee of an educational system who themselves can not spell the word "goal." An employee who probably was also a product of that very same educational system.

And what of the fact that none of the parents noticed the sign and demanded that it be changed? What of the fact that no one driving by, in at least five days, bothered to try to get the school to fix the error? What about the fact that none of the school children noticed it and pointed it out to their teachers? Well, to be fair, we can't actually say that's the case.

I mean, the alternative is also possible. That parents, citizens, and students saw the sign, brought it to the attention of the school, and the school simply refused to take action.

So that leaves us with two possibilities. Either no one noticed, in which case the school system has failed to produce any citizens capable even of recognizing simple spelling errors, or people did notice and the school failed to act, in which case the school is obviously uninterested with quality standards and public perception.

Take another look at that picture. Drink it in. It's everything that is wrong with the system which our children are being forcibly subjected to, the system we are being robbed to fund.

Attendance gole 95% - 92%

Do we really want 95 to 92 percent of our children attending these schools?


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