Wednesday, June 07, 2006

My Faith In Democracy Is Restored (And We're Not Talking About Amercan Idol This Time)

Congrats (I simply can't write "kudos"--the word makes me shudder) to California voters for decisively rejecting Prop 82. This was Rob Reiner's plan to pay for universal preschool through a huge new tax that soaked the rich.

The last poll I read (a few weeks ago) had it winning, so I'm surprised and heartened. This was a bad idea all around. Why? I don't have to explain any more since it ain't gonna happen. (The previous sentence was written by a nursery school dropout.)

A sidenote: Supporters claimed a study had shown every dollar spent on preschool led to a two to four dollar gain for society. I don't need to read other studies to know this is absurd. First, the sky-high return--if they'd been reasonable and said you make a $1.10 on every $1.00 spent, maybe they'd have some credibility. Second, the variance. Their research is so inexact that they don't know if things'll be two times better or four times better! What they're doing is hard to distinguish from guessing.


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