Thursday, April 10, 2008

All Your Children Are Belong To Us

A stupid law is being proposed in Michigan to require all homeschoolers to register with the public schools and provide information about their families. Why? Don't worry:
Ron Koehler, who is the assistant superintendent for organizational and community initiatives at the Kent Intermediate School District (KISD), said he thinks having the information would enable the intermediate school district to inform parents about programs and classes that may be available to home school students.
Yeah, and I have a bridge in New York I'd like to sell you. Why does a public school rep think he has the right to demand that families not using the public schools identify themselves and hand over their private information?
"They're still our students and families," he said.
Uh, no. They're not.

I'm past being amazed through this last decade at the eagerness with which both lefties and righties are willing to hand over our freedoms and privacies to the state, in the name of making sure that Something Bad doesn't happen. From warrantless phone tapping of citizens (because they might be discussing a plot to blow up something!) to the endless mantra of "How can we know those homeschooled kids are being educated and not abused?", we're all agog to know what our neighbor might be up to that might be Bad.

I'm not a libertarian--quite the reverse--but I have a hopeless nostalgia for the principle of probable cause. It's not worth the cost of allowing the state warrantless, at-will access into people's homes and lives, just to make sure terrorist plots are foiled, or children aren't being beaten. It's sure not worth that cost to make sure kids are passing geometry.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Books Read in 2008
(Updated continuously)

Concept filched from DarwinCatholic.

Baptismal Instructions - St. John Chrysostom
Eclipse of the Sun - Michael O'Brien
The Thanatos Syndrome - Walker Percy
The Third Man - Graham Greene
Fathers and Sons - Ivan Turgenev
The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemingway