Is education a right?
Jose Nino, a writer and human rights activist from Venezuela has written a great article on education on Mises Wire arguing that education is not a right. Let’s review what he is saying. We listen to all types of dissenting opinions. Politicians always insist that education is a political pillar in our society. If we fail to attain education we will become uneducated savages.
All the inventions and innovations which we are aware of would not have been possible if it were not for education.
Nino further argues that politicians and academics are missing a point when they argue that education is a right. This is the false premise on which the state bases its argument to maintain a monopoly power on the education sector.
Nino begs to differ with the conventional wisdom by concluding that education is a capital good. It has never been a right.
By their nature, economic goods are generally scarce and consumers’ desires have to be satisfied.
Jose Nino argues that Free Education is not free after all. This is has been a subject under discussion since the introduction of Free Primary Education in 2003. He says that saying and believing that there is free education is being myopic.
In all countries which claim to offer free education, the writer argues that there is a large number of people who do not even use it. For instance, those who are schooled in private schools and homeschoolers. Despite their absence from public schools, they are forced to subsidize those who seek free education.
The biggest problem is the misallocation of economic resources that would have been used elsewhere in a more productive way.
He points out that if it were not for taxation, people would keep their money and create their own educational arrangements under a free market economy. That way the economy would be free from government c0ntrol.
The writer argues that even without a government hand, education will still exist. People will use their personal initiatives to acquire or spread education. He even refers to the fact that there are parallel education systems such as Lynda, Coursera and Khan Academy. At these alternative platforms, people acquire skills which are in high demand at the market place at affordable prices.
When we declare that education is a right, a new type of problems or challenges emerge on the scene.
Examples to support the claims
The education budget has grown from$14.5 billion in 1979 to $70 billion today. Despite the allocation of massive resources to public education, schools in the United States have largely been underperforming when compared to their international contemporaries. The federal government should bring to an end her efforts to intervene in the education sector.
In fact, general observations have shown that large budgets are allocated as a reward for incompetence.
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