More budget-conscious Houston families appear to be contemplating home schooling as an alternative to pricey private school tuition.
Houston mother Olivia Ober, for example, plans to withdraw her two young daughters from private school next month in favor of a less expensive private home-schooling hybrid model based out of a church.
â€śFinances definitely came into play,â€ť Ober said.
Across the region, home-school advocates are seeing signs of increased interest. Some argue that money is a secondary consideration, if that. They say other factors â€” such as religion and morality â€” are driving the gains....
I will add that Nebraska has many volunteer fire departments, and Neil you are quite right about the services that were noblesse oblige in the United States and Britain. Benjamin Franklin's activities are an example of this, Since most of us attended public school, most of us know about Horace Mann, and of course we have our obligation to pay taxes, etc. Rendering To Caesar: A Biblical Perspective On Government.
"...the Bible makes it plain that parents are responsible for their childrens' education. Home schooling is the norm, at least biblically speaking. Trusting Satan's minions to educate the kids is insane.
Of course, paying taxes is also our Christian duty. The Lord will provide enough to do both."
I don't mind paying property taxes to educate other people's kids because I understand that there will ALWAYS be a mojority who clamor for government education and there is nothing that I can do about it. In a way, I consider it the equivalent of paying hush money to be left alone. You use the government to educate your kids and leave me alone to educate mine at home.
It is tempting to imagine that Guinness's views might alternatively be explained by his seeing so little in return for his taxes that he finds the idea of gov't providing "services," esp. to individuals, absurd.
Historical trivia: Police & fire-protection organizations were not generally public activities until the 19th century, both in England & America, & these were confined to large cities. Private persons were expected to arrest fugitives (hence, "Citizen's Arrest" in Common Law, posse comitatus, etc.).
And America still has volunteer fire depts here & there.
Guinness wrote: Again I submit that your implicit working definition of taxation is too narrow and quite novel.
I may regret jumping into the middle of this, but here goes. It seems to me that Neil's perspective on taxes, being American, and Guiness' perspective, presumably European (though I'm not certain of that - just an assumption from the name), are bound to be different.
In America, there is a presumption that our government's right to tax us (and to do anything else for that matter) comes from the people's inherent rights that are ceded to the government. In Europe, the presumption is that the people's rights come from the government (originally from the king) that are ceded to the people (usually after a war or two). That difference alone is enough to account for the apparent misunderstanding here.
Government schools are the novelty, having been invented only about 150 years ago. Prior to that, all education was private.
Regardless, the Bible makes it plain that parents are responsible for their childrens' education. Home schooling is the norm, at least biblically speaking. Trusting Satan's minions to educate the kids is insane.
Of course, paying taxes is also our Christian duty. The Lord will provide enough to do both.
Agree that a tax is a charge imposed upon citizens by a government, but where is purpose mentioned? You say it's not a fee for individual services, so what is it then?
I get some historical [European] examples, but still no stated purpose, so I now resort to Wikipedia [surely a relatively neutral source] where it says on Taxes, "Some of these [functions] include expenditures on war, the enforcement of law and public order, protection of property, economic infrastructure ..., public works, social engineering, and the operation of government itself. Most modern governments also use taxes to fund welfare and public services."
So the idea of individ. services, though possibly disputable or incomplete, is not entirely off the map on this subject, is it? Maybe you prefer "collective services," but you haven't said so.
Neil wrote: Guinness, before I dig myself into a hole as a tax heretic, may I ask again about, "general taxation is not a service fee"? To wit, that is a negative definition. What is the positive one?
A positive example of the definition of taxes:-
"To tax (from the latin taxare: to estimate, which in turn is from tangere: to touch) is to impose a financial charge or other levy upon a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity) by a state or the functional equivalent of a state."
With respect Neil, I believe that the onus is still very much on you to support your original premise for your "problem", and provide the positive definitions of taxation in universal usage that demonstrate that taxes are for the direct provision of specific services.
For example, historically many taxes have not been used for the provision of services to any of the taxpayers AT ALL, but rather to provide for the luxuries of the rulers, or the churches or even the lowly tax collector himself.
Again I submit that your implicit working definition of taxation is too narrow and quite novel.
Guinness, before I dig myself into a hole as a tax heretic, may I ask again about, "general taxation is not a service fee"?
To wit, that is a negative definition. What is the positive one? I ask the same about your toll road example, too; I see negative, but no positive. I can hardly follow the straight & narrow by being told where the road *isn't*.
Jim: "well-educated citizenry make better soldiers." An unsubstantiated assertion, & not the original reason many Am. public schools were founded. And how much schooling is needed to follow orders & operate a rifle?
I would also add, that the article was comparing the cost of private schools as compared to home schooling. Of course every state is going to support public schooling, a well-educated citizenry make better soldiers, so the State has an interest in having at least some public education.
Neil wrote: I am supposed to contradict a definition I do not understand?
Neil, that is not my intention at all.
You have made an argument based upon a premise. I am asking you to demonstrate your premise. Your premise is that taxation is an individualised service fee. Yours is the novel idea.
For example, a road toll is clearly a specific usage service fee for a specific road whether imposed by government or a private road builder. In contrast general taxes that go to pay for the general provision of most roads in general are not service fees nor dependent on the usage of those roads
The problem? Compelling folks to pay for services not rendered is a form of theft. It is not clear to me that mass education broadly benefits the public as, for example, emergency services & waste collection do. An illiterate person can still be a productive, law-abiding citizen - unskilled, menial jobs are there for the asking. Moreover, public education is not succeeding well in graduating literate, law-abiding citizens, so even on pragmatic grounds, it is a failure. Finally, one cannot educate w/o imparting & employing philosophical principles. That is hardly something that government is competent to manage, cf. Rom. 13.
In a related vein, there was a piece on the Tucson news last night about a local Sheriff wanting to stop (he didn't say how) illegal immigrant children from attending public schools, who benefit from taxes their parents don't pay. Local educrats were outraged, since schools get funded based on Average Daily Attendance; what do they care about equity? But homeschooled citizens, paradoxically, represent a loss to them even though in theory they cost less, which explains why they are often persecuted by school officials, even in districts where homeschooling is expressly legal.
They didn't mention that many school districts today are under budgetary pressure from revenue shortfalls, which would be an indirect incentive for families to abandon them (fewer campuses & programs, larger class sizes, etc).
A problem remains: homeschool parents still have to pay property taxes (which fund gov't schools), in addition to their own homeschool expenses (primarily textbooks, curricula).