Monthly Archives: February 2011

Ronald Wilson Reagan Part 40

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I was on a plane flying from St. Louis to Orlando last night and we took off 20 minutes late. Not to worry though because the pilot informed us that he will just do 600 mph and get there 20 minutes early. I was amazed to see so many baseball and tennis courts lit up in Orlando. Of course, the temp in St. Louis was 36 degrees and in Orlando it was 73 degrees.

I am going to post portions of this article by Ronald Reagan the next few days.

June 10, 2004, 10:30 a.m.
Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation
Ronald Reagan’s pro-life tract.

EDITOR’S NOTE: While president, Ronald Reagan penned this article for The Human Life Review, unsolicited. It ran in the Review‘s Spring 1983, issue and is reprinted here with permission.

Mother Teresa:”If you don’t want the little child, that unborn child, give him to me.”

It is possible that the Supreme Court itself may overturn its abortion rulings. We need only recall that in Brown v. Board of Education the court reversed its own earlier “separate-but-equal” decision. I believe if the Supreme Court took another look at Roe v. Wade, and considered the real issue between the sanctity of life ethic and the quality of life ethic, it would change its mind once again.

As we continue to work to overturn Roe v. Wade, we must also continue to lay the groundwork for a society in which abortion is not the accepted answer to unwanted pregnancy. Pro-life people have already taken heroic steps, often at great personal sacrifice, to provide for unwed mothers. I recently spoke about a young pregnant woman named Victoria, who said, “In this society we save whales, we save timber wolves and bald eagles and Coke bottles. Yet, everyone wanted me to throw away my baby.” She has been helped by Save-a-Life, a group in Dallas, which provides a way for unwed mothers to preserve the human life within them when they might otherwise be tempted to resort to abortion. I think also of House of His Creation in Catesville, Pennsylvania, where a loving couple has taken in almost 200 young women in the past ten years. They have seen, as a fact of life, that the girls are not better off having abortions than saving their babies. I am also reminded of the remarkable Rossow family of Ellington, Connecticut, who have opened their hearts and their home to nine handicapped adopted and foster children.

The Adolescent Family Life Program, adopted by Congress at the request of Senator Jeremiah Denton, has opened new opportunities for unwed mothers to give their children life. We should not rest until our entire society echoes the tone of John Powell in the dedication of his book, Abortion: The Silent Holocaust, a dedication to every woman carrying an unwanted child: “Please believe that you are not alone. There are many of us that truly love you, who want to stand at your side, and help in any way we can.” And we can echo the always-practical woman of faith, Mother Teresa, when she says, “If you don’t want the little child, that unborn child, give him to me.” We have so many families in America seeking to adopt children that the slogan “every child a wanted child” is now the emptiest of all reasons to tolerate abortion.

Dr. Koop shares his experience when sharing his faith as a surgeon in the hosptial setting and as Surgeon General in Washington. More information at http://www.christianethics.org

1934 Three Little Pigskins . Lucy moments.

My son is crazy about the “Three Stooges.” It is always been our goal to expose our kids to the finer things in life and lots of culture.  Last night we saw an episode with Lucy in it from 1934. Notice a picture of Lucy below with the Reagans.

President Reagan, Nancy Reagan, Tom Selleck, Dudley Moore, Lucille Ball at a Tribute to Bob Hope’s 80th birthday at the Kennedy Center. 5/20/83.

1980 interview with Milton Friedman by Phil Donahue (part 3). Friedman greatly influenced me and as a result was a very involved in 1980 campaigning for Reagan.

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Little known presidential facts:

  1. Abraham Lincoln is the only president to receive a patent (# 6469). He was the first president to have a beard, at the request from a little girl named Gracie Bedell. The first child to die in the White House was Abraham Lincoln’s 12-year old son, Willie.i
  2. Abraham Lincoln was the tallest president at 6′ 4” and weighing 180 pounds.i

Sweden’s Voucher Program Part 5

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Milton Friedman’s film series “Free to Choose” Episode on Education part 3. It was Friedman’s voucher plan that was put into practice in Sweden in 1993.

I am sitting in the St. Louis airport waiting to get on my plane to Orlando on a business trip. Can you imagine, I booked a trip with Southwest Airlines because they have always done such a great job and they sent me from Little Rock to Florida by way of St. Louis.

Liberals  are so critical of the  Little Rock public school system, but they don’t want to offer other choices with vouchers which would cause competition. However, both the public schools and other schools would become more efficient if there were vouchers. That is exactly what has happened in Sweden.

Max Brantley is always critical of charter schools, but I personally prefer to look at the option of a school system that is funded by vouchers.

I read an excellent article called “School Choice in Sweden: An Interview with Thomas Idergard of Timbro,” (March 8, 2010) by Dan Lips and I wanted to share some of his answers with you below:

DL: What has Sweden’s experience been with the universal vouchers program?
TI: People really choose! Before the reform, less than 1 percent of all pupils in compulsory education (and around the same amount for students in upper secondary schools) were enrolled in private schools. Today, 10 percent of the pupils in compulsory education and 20 percent of students in upper secondary education choose independent schools. In certain regions of the country, almost half of all pupils and students are enrolled in independent schools.
The independent schools have gone from being an odd phenomenon in certain cities to an obvious and natural part of the Swedish education system. From a business point of view, the independent schools are developing into what can be considered as a real industry, and they are promoting real innovation.
The small independent schools have often challenged the public schools and forced them to improve. But the large chain companies, which have an estimated one-fourth to one-fifth of all independent school students, have proven to be an important force for innovative progress, regarding both educational methods and, important enough, ways to measure, compare, maintain, and improve results.
This also explains why independent schools, on an average, prove to have a smaller per pupil cost than public schools. Since 2004, the inflation-adjusted cost increase per pupil has been smaller for independent schools than that for the whole Swedish education system. And independent schools are not allowed to choose their students. Detailed analysis of cost items shows that independent schools spend a higher share of their revenues on education and teaching materials and are more efficient in managing other costs.

George Washington at 279 (Born Feb 22, 1732) Part 1

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Glenn Beck discusses this topic with Peter Lillback and David Barton. Also discussed is the revisionist history done by the Progressives that has created the current widely held view that Washington was a Deist.

My son Wilson was born in Sept of 1996.  Shortly after that I got to go on a trip through New England with my sons Rett (9 yr) and Hunter (8yr) and we toured sites that were associated with our Founding Fathers. One of my favorites was Mt Vernon where George and Martha Washington lived.

It is fitting that today which is George Washington’s birthday that my son Hunter is back in Virginia and may get a chance to visit Mt Vernon again. He is attending a week of training  for the military and will be heading back for his second tour in 2012. He served in Iraq in 2008 and will be heading to Afghanistan next.

The first time we went to Mt Vernon he asked me why the sign said that no one could touch George Washington’s bed. I told him that over one million people visit Mt Vernon every year and if everyone touched the bed that it could fall apart. He had really wanted to say that he had touched George Washington’s bed.

In a way, we all want to be closely associated with our Founding Fathers. I was especially impressed with Washington’s Falwell Speech. In the next few days I will post portions of the speech (which really was just a newspaper article) but since it is so long I will put an outline of the speech that is provided by David Barton of Wallbuilders.

OUTLINE

  1. Retirement from office.
    1. He realizes people must be thinking about his replacement, therefore he declines re-election.
    2. He has thought it through, and feels like it is in everyone’s best interest.
    3. He wanted to retire earlier, but foreign affairs and advice from those he respected caused him to “abandon the idea.”
    4. Now that everything is calm, he is persuaded that the people will not disapprove of this “determination to retire.”
    5. He is convinced his age forces retirement, and he welcomes the opportunity.
    6. He offers gratitude for the people’s support.
    7. He offers a blessing “that Heaven may continue to you the choicest tokens of its beneficence. . .”
  2. Scope of the Address.
    1. His sentiments are for the people’s “frequent review,” he wanted us to read and re-read the Address.
    2. His only motive was as a friend.
    3. He felt no need to recommend a love of liberty – it was already there.
  3. Unity of Government.
    1. Unity is a “main pillar” of “real independence”:
      1. for the support of “tranquility at home”
      2. for “your peace abroad”
      3. for “your safety”
      4. for “your prosperity”
      5. for “that very liberty which you so highly prize.”
    2. Common attributes of unity:
      1. same religion
      2. manners
      3. habits
      4. political principles.
    3. The most commanding motive is to preserve the “union of the whole.”
    4. The North, South, East, and West all depend on each other.
    5. Unity leads to greater strength, resources, and security.
    6. Unity will help “avoid the necessity of . . . overgrown military establishments” and will be the main “prop of your liberty.”
    7. He questions the patriotism of anyone who tries to “weaken its bands.”
    8. It was unity that brought two valuable treaties:
      1. with Great Britain
      2. with Spain.
    9. Government for the whole – via the Constitution – is indispensable; not just alliances between sections.
      1. the adoption of the Constitution was an improvement on the former “essay.”
      2. respect for its authority, compliance with its laws, and acquiescence in its measures are fundamental maxims of true liberty.
      3. the people’s right to alter constitutions is the basis of our political system.

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Little known fact about George Washington:

George Washington the first President of the United States was a very enigmatic person. There are many fascinating anecdotes about the great man

The story of how George Washington, cut down a cherry tree with his new axe, is well known. The incident never happened. It was a story concocted by Washington’s biographer, Parson Mason Weems, years after his death.

Ronald Wilson Reagan Part 39

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President Reagan and Bob Hope laughing with George Shultz at the Kennedy Center Honors. Washington, DC 12/8/85.

Reagan’s Surgeon General C. Everett Koop talks about “baby doe.” Discussing film series “Whatever happened to the human race?”

You will notice in this above clip by C. Everett Koop that Ronald Reagan, Koop and Malcolm Muggeridge all wrote a book together called”Abortion and the Conscience of a Nation, (1983).” It sold millions of copies and I have been quoting from the first chapter of that book in these posts from the  Human Life Review.

I got to see Bob Hope get a performance in Memphis with my grandfather (Everette Hatcher Sr., 1903-1988) and we had a great time. You will notice Bob Hope above in the picture above.

I am going to post portions of this article by Ronald Reagan the next few days.

June 10, 2004, 10:30 a.m.
Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation
Ronald Reagan’s pro-life tract.

EDITOR’S NOTE: While president, Ronald Reagan penned this article for The Human Life Review, unsolicited. It ran in the Review‘s Spring 1983, issue and is reprinted here with permission.

Malcolm Muggeridge: “Either life is always and in all circumstances sacred, or intrinsically of no account.”

I know that when the true issue of infanticide is placed before the American people, with all the facts openly aired, we will have no trouble deciding that a mentally or physically handicapped baby has the same intrinsic worth and right to life as the rest of us. As the New Jersey Supreme Court said two decades ago, in a decision upholding the sanctity of human life, “a child need not be perfect to have a worthwhile life.”

Whether we are talking about pain suffered by unborn children, or about late-term abortions, or about infanticide, we inevitably focus on the humanity of the unborn child. Each of these issues is a potential rallying point for the sanctity of life ethic. Once we as a nation rally around any one of these issues to affirm the sanctity of life, we will see the importance of affirming this principle across the board.

Malcolm Muggeridge, the English writer, goes right to the heart of the matter: “Either life is always and in all circumstances sacred, or intrinsically of no account; it is inconceivable that it should be in some cases the one, and in some the other.” The sanctity of innocent human life is a principle that Congress should proclaim at every opportunity.

1980 interview with Milton Friedman by Phil Donahue (part 2). Friedman greatly influenced me and as a result was a very involved in 1980 campaigning for Reagan.

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Little known presidential details:

  1. Jimmy Carter is the only president to have been commander of both a nuclear submarine and a peanut farm.b
  2. William McKinley, Grover Cleveland, and James Madison are on the $500, $1000, and $5000 bill, respectively. The bills are still used as legal tender but are no longer being printed.b

Sweden’s Voucher Program Part 4

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Milton Friedman’s film series “Free to Choose” Episode on Education part 2. It was Friedman’s voucher plan that was put into practice in Sweden in 1993. See Friedman below next to George Shultz who was next to Reagan.

(R Row, from front to rear) Milton Friedman, George Shultz, Pres. Ronald Reagan, Arthur Burns, William Simon and Walter Wriston & unknown at a meeting of White House economic advisers.
(R Row, from front to rear) Milton Friedman, George Shultz, Pres. Ronald Reagan, Arthur Burns, William Simon and Walter Wriston & unknown at a meeting of White House economic advisers.

Pat Lynch and other liberals like him are so critical of the  Little Rock public school system, but they don’t want to offer other choices with vouchers. I guess they really think that competition is a bad thing. Max Brantley recently said, “I’m with you on the current administration’s failure to deal with administrative bloat.” (“Little Rock School District What a waste,” Arkansas Times, August 5, 2010). However, Brantley thinks limiting competition somehow will work if we just hire more competent people.

The key to straightening out our  schools is competition. Do you think that the Little Rock School System would rise to the occasion if they had to? Now they have a captive audience that can not afford to go elsewhere.

I read an excellent article called “School Choice in Sweden: An Interview with Thomas Idergard of Timbro,” (March 8, 2010) by Dan Lips and I wanted to share some of his answers with you below:

DL: What is the range of choices?
TI: On a general level, the range of choices is very wide. There are all kinds of independent schools. In 215 of Sweden’s total 290 cities and municipalities, there are one or more independent schools operating. Compulsory schools are for pupils 7–16 years old, are mandatory by law, and have uniform content with one national curriculum for all schools, regardless if they are public or independent. Upper secondary schools are for students ranging from16–19 years of age. Upper secondary students choose between different educational programs depending on their goals (such as preparation for university studies or education for a profession). Upper secondary schools were formally voluntary, but almost all students attend now, and the curricula differ between programs. However, for every program the curriculum is national and the same for public and independent schools. Around 14 percent of all compulsory schools and 44 percent of all upper secondary schools are independent. And there is a steady increase every year. In 1992, less than 1 percent of schools in Sweden were private. Today one out of five Swedish compulsory or upper secondary schools today is independent.
Before the voucher reform, the few private schools existing merely differed from public schools regarding ownership. Today, almost half of the independent schools differ more or less radically from public schools regarding pedagogical concept and methods to fulfill the curriculum. Around 10 percent of the independent schools are religious/confessional. More than six out of 10 independent schools are run as for-profit limited companies, a form for school operation that has become more common throughout the years. And there are small, local schools—founded by teachers and headmasters and run as only one unit—alongside larger chain school companies that are represented all over the country. One school corporation is even listed on the Stockholm Exchange Market.

Ronald Wilson Reagan Part 38

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President Reagan and Nancy Reagan attending “All Star Tribute to Dutch Reagan” at NBC Studios(from left to right sitting) Colleen Reagan, Neil Reagan, Maureen Reagan, President, Nancy Reagan, Dennis Revell. (From left to right standing) Emmanuel Lewis, Charlton Heston, Ben Vereen, Monty Hall, Frank Sinatra, Burt Reynolds, Dean Martin, Eydie Gorme, Vin Scully, Steve Lawrence, last 2 unidentified. Burbank, California 12/1/85.

Above you will see the picture of Charlton Heston. My wife actually got her picture taken with Heston in 1992 when he came in to try to jump start Mike Huckabee’s effort to beat Senator Dale Bumpers.

Dr. Koop shares his journey to becoming Surgeon General in Part 1 of this interview at Wheaton College, IL. http://www.christianethics.org

Dr. C. Everett Koop was a big influence on me because of his involvement in the film series “Whatever happened to the human race?” It probably really motivated me to campaign for Ronald Reagan in 1980.

I am going to post portions of this article by Ronald Reagan the next few days.

June 10, 2004, 10:30 a.m.
Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation
Ronald Reagan’s pro-life tract.

EDITOR’S NOTE: While president, Ronald Reagan penned this article for The Human Life Review, unsolicited. It ran in the Review‘s Spring 1983, issue and is reprinted here with permission.

Reagan: “This Administration has a Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Koop, who has done perhaps more than any other American for handicapped children…”

We must all educate ourselves to the reality of the horrors taking place. Doctors today know that unborn children can feel a touch within the womb and that they respond to pain. But how many Americans are aware that abortion techniques are allowed today, in all 50 states, that burn the skin of a baby with a salt solution, in an agonizing death that can last for hours?

Another example: two years ago, the Philadelphia Inquirer ran a Sunday special supplement on “The Dreaded Complication.” The “dreaded complication” referred to in the article — the complication feared by doctors who perform abortions — is the survival of the child despite all the painful attacks during the abortion procedure. Some unborn children do survive the late-term abortions the Supreme Court has made legal. Is there any question that these victims of abortion deserve our attention and protection? Is there any question that those who don’t survive were living human beings before they were killed?

Late-term abortions, especially when the baby survives, but is then killed by starvation, neglect, or suffocation, show once again the link between abortion and infanticide. The time to stop both is now. As my Administration acts to stop infanticide, we will be fully aware of the real issue that underlies the death of babies before and soon after birth.

Our society has, fortunately, become sensitive to the rights and special needs of the handicapped, but I am shocked that physical or mental handicaps of newborns are still used to justify their extinction. This Administration has a Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Koop, who has done perhaps more than any other American for handicapped children, by pioneering surgical techniques to help them, by speaking out on the value of their lives, and by working with them in the context of loving families. You will not find his former patients advocating the so-called “quality-of-life” ethic.

1980 interview with Milton Friedman by Phil Donahue (part 1).

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Little known presidential facts:

  1. Every so often, Calvin Coolidge would press all the buttons on the President’s desk and hide and watch his staff run in. He would then pop out from behind the door and say that he was just seeing if everyone was working.b
  2. The first president to be born outside the original 13 States was Lincoln.k

Candidate #1,MN Gov Tim Pawlenty: Republican Presidential Hopefuls (Part C)

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Gov. Tim Pawlenty RNC Speech Part 1 of 3

Tim Pawlenty visited Arkansas last week. In the video clip above he really jumps on President Obama for increasing wasteful spending by our government to new heights.

I wanted to include some posts from the article “Excerpts: Tim Pawlenty’s Courage to Stand.” Former Minnesota Governor Discusses Losing the VP Slot to Sarah Palin and How President Obama ‘Broke His Promise’ in His New Book:”

In his new autobiography, former Gov. Tim Pawlenty
reflects on his evolving political and personal life,
from his humble upbringing in St. Paul, Minn., to the
governor’s mansion. An evangelical Christian and a
booming voice for the Republican party, Pawlenty has
said several times he is strongly considering a
presidential bid in 2012.

Read excerpts from his book, “Courage to Stand: An
American Story,” below:

Pawlenty on preparing materials for the vice
presidential vetting process in 2008:

“It was kind of comical at times — the Governor and
First Lady in the middle of the night organizing stacks
of paper now strewn all over the computer-room
floor, trying to make tabs and get it all in the right
place, checking to see if the three-hole punch worked
and then running out to Kinko’s for photocopies.”

Pawlenty reflecting on McCain’s choice of then-
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his 2008 running mate:

“Sarah Palin has become a force of nature in the
Republican Party. She inspires people in the
conservative cause. She exudes enthusiasm, and that
energy is the fuel of grassroots politics. We need that
kind of energy and fuel from people all over this
country if we want a shot at setting America back on
course. While some might still debate McCain’s
selection, the undeniable truth is that it took courage
to stand up to the critics, the pundits, and the
expectations of the media and the Washington
establishment and choose Sarah Palin in the first
place.”

Ronald Wilson Reagan Part 37

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President and Nancy Reagan with Prince Charles and Princess Diana in the Yellow Oval room. 11/9/85.

I watched the movie “The King’s Speech” with my son Wilson this week. We both really enjoyed it. It basically chronicles the life of King George from 1925 to 1939. It shows how he had to improve his speaking abilities. It also showed his daughter Elizabeth who was about 13 yrs old in 1939 and she took over as Queen in 1950. Her oldest son is prince Charles who is pictured above.

Now that everyone is getting ready for the big royal wedding that is coming up this year, I am reminded of the huge wedding that Charles and Diana had in 1981.

I am going to post portions of this article by Ronald Reagan the next few days.

June 10, 2004, 10:30 a.m.
Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation
Ronald Reagan’s pro-life tract.

EDITOR’S NOTE: While president, Ronald Reagan penned this article for The Human Life Review, unsolicited. It ran in the Review‘s Spring 1983, issue and is reprinted here with permission.

Reagan “the pressing issue of infanticide which, as we have seen, flows inevitably from permissive abortion as another step in the denial of the inviolability of innocent human life.”

The Congress has before it several measures that would enable our people to reaffirm the sanctity of human life, even the smallest and the youngest and the most defenseless. The Human Life Bill expressly recognizes the unborn as human beings and accordingly protects them as persons under our Constitution. This bill, first introduced by Senator Jesse Helms, provided the vehicle for the Senate hearings in 1981 which contributed so much to our understanding of the real issue of abortion.

The Respect Human Life Act, just introduced in the 98th Congress, states in its first section that the policy of the United States is “to protect innocent life, both before and after birth.” This bill, sponsored by Congressman Henry Hyde and Senator Roger Jepsen, prohibits the federal government from performing abortions or assisting those who do so, except to save the life of the mother. It also addresses the pressing issue of infanticide which, as we have seen, flows inevitably from permissive abortion as another step in the denial of the inviolability of innocent human life.

I have endorsed each of these measures, as well as the more difficult route of constitutional amendment, and I will give these initiatives my full support. Each of them, in different ways, attempts to reverse the tragic policy of abortion-on-demand imposed by the Supreme Court ten years ago. Each of them is a decisive way to affirm the sanctity of human life.

Milton Friedman on Donahue Show. Friedman influenced me tremendously in 1979 when I read his book Free to Choose. (part 5)

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  1. John Adams’ campaign propaganda against Jefferson said that if Jefferson was elected, “murder, robbery, rape, adultery, and incest will be openly taught and practiced.” They later resolved their differences and wrote many letters to each other.i
  2. It was so cold at Ulysses S. Grant’s presidential inauguration that the canaries that were supposed to sing at the inaugural ball froze to death.k

Sweden’s Voucher System Part 3

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Milton Friedman’s film series “Free to Choose” Episode on Education part 1. It was Friedman’s voucher plan that was put into practice in Sweden in 1993.


.Marcus Wilson launches a 3. (Photo by Kevin Nagle)

I went to the Van Buren v. Bryant basketball game the other night at Bryant. I wore a white razorback shirt with the number 32 on it and my grandson Luke Hatcher wore a yellow shirt and sat next to me. Kevin White who is the asst pastor at North Park Baptist is sitting in front of me with the dark green hat and the green shirt. His son Drew White is trying to block a shot by the Bryant player. (Van Buren won the game.)

Drew actually is not only one of the best basketball players I have seen but he also has a scholarship to play football at OBU as a receiver. His brother is presently a receiver at Southern Arkansas University and they will be playing against one another in conference play next year.

Luke’s family just moved here from Van Buren and they were members of North Park Baptist Church which one of the most dynamic churches I have ever visited.

I have wondered why Pat Lynch and other liberals like him are so critical of the  Little Rock public school system, but none of the liberals want to try a new approach like vouchers.

I read an excellent article called “School Choice in Sweden: An Interview with Thomas Idergard of Timbro,” (March 8, 2010) by Dan Lips and I wanted to share some of his answers with you below:

Across the United States, policymakers are increasingly adopting education policies that give families the power to choose their children’s schools. Nonetheless, the idea of providing school vouchers to allow children to attend private schools remains controversial. For instance, congressional leaders and the Obama Administration have tried to end a successful school voucher program for low-income children in Washington, D.C.
American policymakers on the Left and the Right may be surprised to learn that a universal school choice program has taken hold in Sweden. The Heritage Foundation interviewed Thomas Idergard, Program Director of Welfare and Reform Strategy Studies at Timbro,[1] a free-market think tank based in Stockholm.
Dan Lips: Mr. Idergard, thank you very much for taking the time for this interview. Can you please tell us the background of how Sweden’s voucher program came to be? How was it created?
Thomas Idergard: Thank you very much, Mr. Lips, for giving me the opportunity to tell you more about the Swedish model for real school choice—for all.
The Swedish school voucher program was introduced in 1992 by the then Center-Right government. First, the Social Democrats opposed the reform, but after having returned to power in 1994 they not only accepted it but also expanded the legislated compensation level of the voucher. Today there is almost a total national political consensus—with the one and only exception from the small Left (i.e., former Communist) Party—on the foundations of school choice in Sweden.
Since the 1970s, the Swedish school system had declined regarding quality and student attainment. One reason for this was the lack of choice. Only the very rich, who could afford private schools with private tuition fees on top of our very high taxes, had a right to choose. For all the rest, the school was one monolithic organization in which all students were considered to have the same needs and to learn the same way. The lack of choice created a lack of innovation regarding pedagogical concept and ways of learning adapted to different students’ needs. Public schools, run by politicians in the local branch of government (cities and municipalities), were all there was for 99 percent of all students.
The school voucher program was designed to create a market—with competition, entrepreneurship, and innovation—based on the Swedish and Scandinavian tradition of social justice and equality: All families should be able to choose between public and private schools regardless of their economic status or wealth. This equal opportunity philosophy, taken into its full potential, created an education market!

Sweden’s Voucher System Part 2

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Dr. Thomas Sowell on schools in USA

Over and over you hear people criticizing the Little Rock public school system, but none of the liberals want to try a new approach like vouchers.

Here is the second part of the  article “Sweden’s school voucher system is a model for America,” (The Daily Caller, Jan 23, 2011) by Odd Eiken.

With 15 years of experience, we in Sweden can summarize the effects. Education’s private sector share of students has grown from 1 percent to 10 to 15 percent, depending on grades. In some areas the competition is fierce, with both public and independent schools closing as a result. The variety of independent schools is large in both ownership — from parental cooperatives to corporate chains — and in innovative pedagogy and practice, of which the much-acclaimed Kunskapsskolan is not the only interesting example.
Vouchers are not the sole fix for education — there is no such single reform. But with real competition, independent schools are still generally performing better academically than public schools, even if the differences probably will decrease as their share increases and failing schools disappear. More important perhaps, is that all schools — public and private — perform better in areas where alternatives are plentiful.
As a former Swedish State Secretary of Schools, involved in developing the reform in the 1990s, I often get comments from American friends: “You’re supposed to be the socialists, not us,” they say and ask, “How is it that Sweden, with its egalitarian tradition, has one of the most radical systems for market-driven choice in the world?”
Maybe that is the answer. With our egalitarian tradition, we can’t accept that the right to choose the best school for your child should be reserved just for those who have the means to pay for it.
Mr. Odd Eiken is Executive Vice President of Kunskapsskolan Education, the largest private school provider in Sweden. He was State Secretary of Schools in Sweden 1991-94 and helped develop the nation’s voucher reform.