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General News    H2'ed 5/19/12

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: Quiet Drama in Philadelphia

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"You will not be able to plug in, turn on and cop out.

You will not be able to skip out for beer during commercials,

Because the revolution will not be televised. . . .

The revolution will be live."

 

   --From the 1970 hit song by Gil Scott-Heron

 

 

Last week, the city of Philadelphia's school system announced that it expects to close 40 public schools next year, and 64 schools by 2017. The school district expects to lose 40% of its current enrollment, and thousands of experienced, qualified teachers. 

But corporate media in other cities made no mention of these massive school closings -- nor of those in Chicago, Atlanta, or New York City. Even in the Philadelphia media, the voices of the parents, students and teachers who will suffer were omitted from most accounts. 

It's all about balancing the budgets of cities that have lost revenues from the economic downturn. Supposedly, there is simply no money for the luxury of providing an education for the people.

Where will those children find an education? Where will the teachers find work?  Almost certainly in an explosion of private sector "charter schools," where the quality of education -- from the curriculum to books to the food served at lunch -- will be sacrificed to the lowest bidder, and teachers' salaries and benefits will be sacrificed to the profits of the new private owners, who will also eat up many millions of dollars of taxpayer subsidies. 

Why does there always seem to be enough money for military expansion, prisons, bank bailouts and tax cuts for the wealthy, but not enough for education--or for jobs, housing, healthcare, or old age pensions?  These are not "welfare" but are part of the social contract for which we pay taxes and make social security payments.

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Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books including the best-selling WEB OF DEBT. In THE PUBLIC BANK SOLUTION, her latest book, she explores successful public banking models historically and (more...)
 

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