V for Victory

One of the more hopeful developments in this Batflu Year, has been the closing of North America’s schools and universities. While these have stayed open, or are now reopening in the rest of the world, with the blessings of those medical experts who are moved by evidence-based research, those in “progressive” jurisdictions across this continent promise to stay closed. There is actually no health issue, except for those teachers who are very old, or have mortal physical conditions. (Keep them quarantined.) The danger from infections, for the young and robust, is approximately nil. But here we have a huge political issue, joined by the vast, overpaid teachers’ unions. Parents are everywhere in two minds. They want to return to normal, but have been terrified by media reports that are intentionally misleading, when not openly false. For the meejah¬†are another part of the Left “core constituency.”

Whereas, I am not. Yet I regret the absence of both imagination and spine, on my own side. For instance: we should be seizing this opportunity to put the nanny-state school systems entirely out of business.

Let the parents continue “homeschooling” their children. Let those of university age starve, or find jobs. Let everyone who wishes, continue to enjoy their holiday from reality, until the money runs out. Let federal governments give up trying to argue with provincial and state “education” departments. But let them also withdraw their catastrophically wasteful subsidies. The ambition should be to let the (darn) systems collapse — parent by parent, then school by school.

Instead, focus on championing the “charter schools” movement. The basic idea is to redirect spending from the foetid “education” bureaucracies, to parents in the form of school vouchers. Let the parents decide how these should be spent — on the existing public schools if they want, or if they know better, on better.

Should gentle reader be data-driven, I recommend Thomas Sowell’s latest book, The Charter Schools and their Enemies. Existing charter schools routinely deliver dramatically better results for their students, at significantly lower per-pupil costs. (About half of present spending is sunk into useless “administration.”) Minority students score decisively better in charter schools, than the white monied do in the nanny-state systems, however this is measured. But independent schools are hated by the Left, because they threaten its arbitrary power. More deeply, the Left depends on an idiotized citizenry, that can be easily manipulated to vote against its own interests. Were young people coming up, capable of thinking for themselves, the Left would be doomed.

Hence, there is a big fight, already. This is one front in the current Culture War, but probably the most critical one. Wars must be won, and can be. As we used to say in Canada, when sending our troops to defeat the original Fascists and Nazis in Europe: “No price too high.”

We need a new, “take no prisoners” attitude from the Right, to replace jowls and rumbling bowels. The enemies of civilization must be faced down, even while it looks like we are losing. But we have hardly begun. Take heart against an enemy that must be utterly destroyed.

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PONZU. Today is a memorable Friday, up here in the High Doganate. For long I have been assembling salmon sandwiches, for Friday lunch. My mommy taught me to make these with red sockeye salmon from a tin. (The “pink” stuff is rubbish.) Hellmann’s mayo, blackpepper, a squirt of lemon, and a dash of curry powder, all mooshed together into pulp. On white Wonder bread, or equivalent. But today I have discovered the ingenious effect of Japanese ponzu shoyu. It is an intensely limed soy sauce. A dribble of that, instead of the lemon, and one’s sandwich is raised to the sublime. I was already grinding my curry powder in an ingenious Japanese mill (which reduces coriander- and cumin-seed to a powder in just a few hand rotations). And they share my love for fish. So God bless the Japanese, our allies against the Chinese Communists.