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The End of Education

California set to abandon the use of textbooks in schools in favor of “internet aids”:

Gov Schwarzenegger believes internet activities such as Facebook, Twitter and downloading to iPods show that young people are the first to adopt new online technologies, and so the internet is also the best way to learn in classrooms.

I think there may be a logical fallacy skulking around in there somewhere.

How can the world’s fifth largest economy not have enough money to be able to outfit schools with textbooks? I’m sure it has nothing to do with out of control entitlements spending. Nope. Nothing to see here. It’s a revenue problem, you see.

  1. Peter says:

    One thing that is kinda novel and interesting about california’s bill is its support for open-source/free college textbooks. i usually get big boners when i hear the word open-source, so i had to say something.

  2. Betz says:

    Easy solution: Instead of buying textbooks, just buy all of the students Kindles …. books are like $5-10 dollars apiece.

    Problem Solved.

  3. Matt says:

    Paging Daniel Bachhuber

    …who (unfortunately) predicted this kind of move to me in the Fishbowl of the EMU. Agggh. It’s may be a fair point to bash on entitlement spending. But as I switched from my scanned-in Blackboard readings to this post, I must suggest that the textbook industry might very, very soon find themselves suffering the kind of monetary problems currently befalling the RIAA and newspapers.

    It doesn’t matter even if Arnold gutted medicaid or tossed “illegals” to save money – it’s always going to be cheaper to go to online textbooks, so that’s simply going to happen.

  4. dubya says:

    How dare you! If the leaders of Kaifornia knew how to read an economics textbook we wouldn’t be in a mess. I think they have spent far too much time watching Eraser and not managing the state in a fiscally responsible way.

    There is no need to attack me, the lowly messenger. I suggest you go back to leering at your well-worn VHS box of Hercules in New York with the lights turned down in your studio apartment.

  5. Gsim says:

    Dubya, shut your fucking mouth about Conan the Barbarian. If the leaders of California knew the Riddle of Steel they wouldn’t be in their present clusterfuck.

  6. nike urbanism duk says:

    Arnold is a stem-cell extremist/actorvist. He is likely hoping young people will soon download courses instantly and directly with a skull implanted thumb drive. His work on those Terminator movies made him into a techno-utopian believer.

  7. Anthony says:

    The exact number escapes me, but I know the amount of money spent on benefits for illegals in CA ranges in billions (5-7?) – outrageous.

  8. Timothy says:

    Vincent, you obviously don’t hate brown people enough to understand where Carson is coming from. Also JOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOS!

    Curtis, well, I think Curtis might have a point about state budgets being extremely prone to the business cycle. Except for ignoring the tendency to ramp up spending during good times and then wonder where the money went in bad ones. Time inconsistency kids, look it up.

  9. Vincent says:

    As an ex-Californian, I had high hopes for Arnold. He talked the talk, but he sure hasn’t walked the walk, as it were.

  10. Vincent says:


    So how come California is in such horrible financial straits? It’s not like the state’s financial problems started in the fall of 2008.

    How come Texas, which is #2 in terms of population, isn’t suffering the same crippling budget problems that have beset California since the 1980’s?

    But who am I kidding? You didn

  11. dubya says:

    In case you didn’t know. Kalifornia is run by the lead star of such cinematic triumphs as “Jingle all the Way’, “Kindergarten Cop”, “Junior”, and my personal favorite “Batman and Robin”. It is a sad day when your state is run by a worse actor than Ronald Reagan…. instead of the Gipper, we have Conan the barbarian. Although, on the bright side, he is a far more convincing liar than dear dear Nancy Pelosi. I….llll be back

  12. dubya says:

    As a U of O graduate working in Kalifornia for the last 2 years I can unequivocally say its a spending problem. I pay astronomical taxes on everything from the food I eat, gas I put in my car, and heaven forbid payroll taxes because I work. There are taxes on anything you can imagine and they magically always go up. I wish I could invest in taxes… its the only asset in Kalifornia to never go down, no matter the economy… ever!

    With every pay raise and achievement by me has come a litany of new taxes and fees sapping away any dwindling incentive for me to bother to do anything or work harder. Oregonians pay 0% sales tax. We pay 9.25% for smaller portions of food, worse service and bad roads. The state infrastructure is more decrepit than Ted Kennedy and Ted Stevens combined. Iraq has better roads than Kalifornia (and safer too).

    This is the legislature’s fault because in their infinite wisdom of creating a tax structure designed to penalize a finite amount high wage earners they have created a disaster when high wage earners lose their job or leave the state. It doesn’t take an economist to figure out that the ultra-wealthy for the most part are very clever when it comes to not paying taxes where as the common plebe (such as myself) does not have access to a variety of tax advantageous strategies and shenanigans.

    When the economy was humming along, the state increased spending on any program they could find and now with the economy in the toilet is scrambling to further squeeze the productive class for anything they can. It is beyond short-sighted.

    Thank you Oregon Commentator for addressing this nonsense. Get to the choppa if you want to live!!!! QUUUAAAAIIDDD!

  13. Curtis says:

    *Medicaid, not Medicare.

  14. Curtis says:

    Entitlements like…education? K-12 and higher ed are far and away the most expensive things that California spends its budget on, which take up one-third of the total budget last year, and 50% of the total budget this year. ( (

    Of course, there are “handouts” like Health and Human Services, which spends about 2/3 of its money on Medi-Cal, California’s Medicare program, which every other state in the Union also provides its citizens. (

    Beyond HHS, the California legislature also spent $22 billion last year to pay for liberal pet projects like prisons, the DMV and the California Highway Patrol. If those DFH’s hadn’t kept clamoring for stricter jail sentences and more cops on California’s highways, we might not be in this mess!

    Most states spend the vast majority of their budget on education, health care, prisons and public safety, which almost everyone agrees are pretty vital services. Certainly that is the case in California, and in every other state that’s been facing a budget shortfall.

    Sure, maybe it’s the free-spending ways of the California legislature – or maybe it’s the fact that, like most states, 75% of its funding comes from income tax and consumption taxes, and when recessions happen people tend to buy less and make less money.

    Who am I kidding? You didn’t mean this to be an actual analysis of tax policy. California’s liberal, taxes bad!

  15. Vincent says:

    Yes, alright then.

  16. Carson says:

    Article IV Section 4.

    I think Schwarzenegger should uphold the rule of law and govern by the rules set forth by the United States Constitution as he swore he would with his oath of office.

    Back in the sixties the government came into the schools and brainwashed us with the idea we needed to control the population because it was rising so fast. They said the roads would become crowded and we would run out of things like water.

    They unleashed abortions, birth control pills, and other forms of Family Planning.

    To allow the country to be over run with the criminals in businesses illegal labor while the criminals in the government aid and abet the invasion is a travesty against mankind.

    They have seen to our children were killed to control the population at the same time allowing the world to export their population problems here.

    What about our sacrifices, many made against our will?????

    P.S. We still haven’t recovered from the last time the criminals in business were allowed to bring in their slaves.

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