The news is reporting today that the Republican (last time I checked) Bush Administration and Congressional Democrats are close to an agreement to bailout the auto industry. The terms of the deal involve a $15 billion bridge loan and a federal oversight board.
It’s now becoming clear that rather than moving K-12 public education to look more like a competitive market, we are moving the competitive market to look more like K-12 public education. To assist in those efforts (can’t nobody say JPGB never did nothing for the peoples), I would like to propose the No Consumer Left Behind act. You don’t even need a new acronym!
Under the No Consumer Left Behind act we will provide a system of goals and assistance to ensure that all companies serve their consumers effectively. No longer will we have stigmatizing terms like “bankruptcy.” Instead, we will have “companies in need of improvement.”
All companies will have to achieve profitability by 2014. And they can define for themselves what “profitability” really means. Each year they must make adequate yearly progress toward that goal. If a company fails to make AYP they must offer their consumers the option to buy a different product that the same company sells. After all we have to have choice!
Companies that are in need of improvement will also be provided with additional resources and professional development. If we don’t help them, how else can they help their consumers? We won’t call these additional resources a bailout or reward for failure. Instead, we will call it technical assistance. It’s just technical — like a technical foul.
We will also require all companies to employ “highly qualified” workers. Highly qualified will generally be defined as whoever they currently employ. Alternatively, highly qualified can be restricted to workers possessing union-approved credentials.
If a company fails to make AYP for several years, it will have to “restructure.” But restructuring won’t be like the old bankruptcy restructuring, where you have to sell assets or layoff workers. Instead, it can mean that you held some team-building workshops or hired a new CEO. This new NCLB will be all about accountability.
And as you can tell from the title of the proposed law — we are doing all of this because we care about the consumer. By focusing on companies in need of improvement, offering product choice within companies, providing additional resources to companies, requiring highly qualified workers, and redefining restructuring to mean essentially nothing, we are taking all of the steps necessary to help the companies — err, I meant consumer.
(HT: Bob Maranto)