Privatizing Public Services | Prisons and Schools

We often hear politicians say that the government
should be run like a business. It’s one of those intuitive sayings that
many Americans nod along in agreement with. Part of that business model is the push towards
privatization of government services in order to save money and improve quality – and
we’ve seen a lot of that in recent decades. But can public services with a relatively
stable demand be run like a business – and more importantly, should they? The 60s and 70s were an interesting time in
American history. The baby boomers were coming of age and demanding
things like civil rights, women’s rights, the end to the war in Vietnam, and were generally
causing trouble for the political establishment. So, Nixon began the War on Crime. Crime in this case being protests and riots
and later the War on Drugs because you know… hippies. Drugs were already illegal but now they were
hyper illegal. This escalated under Reagan, which is where
the story of privatization begins for most industries, but for now, let’s just focus
on prisons. The first modern private prison opened in
Tennessee in 1984. In the years that followed, three major corporations
turned private prisons into a multi-billion dollar industry. And at the same time, strangely, the prison
population exploded. I can tell you right now that this doesn’t
track with the overall population of the United States, the violent crime rate grew, but that
peaked in the early 90s and has been falling ever since, so why is the prison population
still growing? Because the definition of a jailable offense
has expanded. And not only that, but the punishments for
those crimes have also grown. Thanks in large part to the private prison
lobby. In order to grow like a business, you have
to increase demand for your product, but public services typically have a pretty stable demand. So private prisons pushed for harsher punishments
and longer punishments. In the late 80s and early 90s, they passed
mandatory minimum sentencing laws, first at the federal level and then almost every state
followed suit. This took determining punishments out of the
hands of judges. They couldn’t take context into account,
it didn’t matter if this was your first offense, you were a model citizen, you didn’t
mean to do it – didn’t matter, prison. Then they lobbied for Three Strikes laws. They vary by state, but in general, if you
commit three misdemeanors, it’s a felony; and if you commit three felonies, you’re
done – mandatory life sentence. This artificially inflated demand for prisons. Even though crime rates are down, the prison
population continues to grow, there are currently 2.3 million prisoners in the United States
and about 9% of them are in private facilities. Private prisons have the benefit of being
built quickly, without taxpayer approval. They commonly refuse to take the most violent,
and therefore the most expensive, prisoners, who then have to go to a government facility. But hey, as long as they’re saving the taxpayers
money, right? It costs about 87 dollars a day per prisoner
in a government run facility, while a private facility can do it for only 70 dollars a day,
mostly by cutting staff and services… which as you might have guessed, leads to more violence…
you get what you pay for. And those savings are negated by the fact
that people in private prisons serve longer sentences. You know when you get sent- when someone else
gets sentenced to 5-10 years for whatever crime? In a government prison, you’re up for parole
in five years and will likely get out. In a private prison, you’re far more likely
to serve the full ten. Not only because of the increased violence
and increased infractions, but the fact that the contract with the government usually includes
a 95% or more required occupancy clause. And the parole board remembers that when looking
over your case. Now, we can debate over whether or not prisons
are correctional and serve to rehabilitate prisoners – they don’t – but what isn’t
up for debate is that private prisons are no better at it than government prisons. 76.6% of all federal private prison inmates
are re-arrested within five years, which is virtually identical to government prisons. Because of that, the Department of Justice
and Bureau of Prisons terminated their contracts with private prisons in 2016. Private prisons served an important role during
a difficult period, but time has shown that they compare poorly to our own Bureau facilities. They simply do not provide the same level
of correctional services, programs, and resources; they do not save substantially on costs; and
they do not maintain the same level of safety and security. The contracts were immediately reinstated
by Trump, but still. Private prisons are losing favor in the court
of public opinion, and they know that, so they’re shifting focus away from corrections
and towards immigration. You know those ICE detention centers you’ve
been hearing about on the news? 75% of them are privately run. But prisons aren’t even close to being the
only public service that has seen a shift towards privatization. Even some that you wouldn’t think could
be privatized, like the military, are mostly private. There are currently three private defense
contractors for every one uniformed servicemember serving overseas. And just over half of them are “combat-oriented”…
so mercenaries. They cost an order of magnitude more than
a regular soldier, at taxpayer expense, but the political benefit of having defense contractors
far outweighs the monetary cost. Whenever a politician says we only have so
many troops remaining in whatever country, mentally multiply that number by four. Defense contractors also don’t count towards
the official American casualty numbers, so those look better too. Private contractors don’t have to follow
the same rules, but they also don’t get the same legal protections. There hasn’t been a real push to privatize
police forces in the United States, but we have been privatizing emergency medical services
and even firefighting. Private firefighters aren’t exactly a new
concept. The first fire brigade in Ancient Rome was
owned by Marcus Licinius Crassus, who would haggle over prices with the property owner
as their home was burning to the ground. I sure am glad we moved passed that and that
would never happen in America. Wexford County, Michigan contracted out its
ambulance services in the mid 90s, saving taxpayers $300,000 in the first year. Lowering taxes is one of the main claims and
a primary driver of privatization. I very much doubt that Wexford County residents
saw a reduction in their taxes, but even if they did, that averages to about $10 per person
per year, or just 83 cents a month. I probably accidentally threw away 83 cents
last month. You might be thinking that any reduction is
a good reduction, right up until you need an ambulance and they hand you your bill. Private EMS charges the county less in taxes
but charges the individual users significantly more on the back end. Privatizing infrastructure, like toll roads
and bridges, comes with the same problem. It reduces local taxes but increases individual
costs. In 2005, the operational rights to the Chicago
Skyway were sold for the next 99 years for 1.8 billion dollars to a Spanish transportation
company and Australian investment bank. Because you know, buy American. Cities and states have been doing this for
a short-term cash influx, while offloading the cost of future maintenance, at the expense
of long-term revenue. Had Chicago maintained control, they would
have made almost 8 billion dollars over that 99 years, not accounting for inflation or
toll increases. Which is exactly what happened anyway, a few
years ago the bridge was re-sold to a collection of Canadian retirement funds, who then doubled
the tolls. They will profit from the bridge until the
year 2104. Perhaps the only case where privatization
has saved taxpayers money both in taxes and on the back end is trash collection. And even then, they fail miserably when it
comes to efficiency. Residential trash collection is fine, it’s
pretty straightforward, but commercial trash collection is an absolute nightmare. In New York City, there are over 250 trash
collection companies. All of that competition in such a small space
just makes them get in the way of each other, a five block stretch of 87 businesses will
have 27 different dump truck companies driving through each night. So that’s how mafia works… So privatization doesn’t really drive down
costs or improve efficiency, but all of that competition must improve quality, right? Yeah, ask British Rail how that went. The story of what happened to British Rail
is so astonishingly stupid that it’s a video in itself… that someone else already made. Seriously, check it out after this, it’s
amazing. I just got back from Vidcon London and the
public transportation there is just so… you have no idea how good you have it. I’m so jealous that I kept my Oyster Card,
just so that I can put it under my pillow and dream about that ever happening in America. Seriously, if they ever try to privatize Transport
for London and you guys don’t riot, or at least form an orderly queue to register a
formal complaint, I would be very disappointed. Same goes for the NHS, while we’re at it. I didn’t have to use it while I was there,
but I know someone who did, and their experience, even as a foreigner, was both quick and fantastic. But healthcare is another video in itself,
don’t worry it’s coming. Competition, at least in the free market,
is supposed to lower costs, improve efficiency, and hopefully improve quality. But governmental public services are by design,
meant to lose money. We all pay into them through taxes, because
we all benefit from the service, either directly or indirectly. We as a society pay for it, because we as
a society benefit from it. Competition didn’t improve quality or lower
costs for private prisons and certainly didn’t for public transportation. But for some reason, we all seem to think
it will work for schools. What if schools had to compete for students
in the same way that businesses have to compete for customers? Schools can’t grow like a business. If you have a burger joint in your town and
a second burger joint opens up, overall demand for burgers increases. Both businesses will benefit from competition. But when it comes to schools, if you open
a second one, you’re just cutting the student population and thus the demand, in half. Unless your business plan includes encouraging
parents to have more kids, in which case you’re playing the long game. The demand for schools is relatively stable
over time, you can cut costs and improve quality all you want, the student population is basically
the same. The National Center for Education Statistics
reports that since 1970, public school attendance in the U.S. has gone up by just five percent,
while public school employment has gone up 95 percent! PragerU is correct when they say the student
population has only grown by 5% in the last 50 years, because people just aren’t having
that many kids anymore, the population is pretty stable. But that 95% employment increase is rather
deceptive. Two-thirds of that growth was in administrative
staff, so secretaries, librarians, counselors, and principals. Apparently every school needs four vice principals
now for some reason. The teacher population only accounts for 37%
of that growth, on average over the last 50 years, we went from 22 students per teacher
to just 16. Which if you ask me, that sounds like a good
trend. But ask almost anyone, and they will tell
you that the public school system is broken. The system, especially for economically disadvantaged
kids, is broken. I even asked you on twitter and an alarming
amount of you agreed. Saying that the public school system is broken
is like… supporting the troops. Every time a politician says it, everyone
claps and nods along in agreement, even if their personal experience was great. But nobody seems to be able to agree on how
to fix it. PragerU’s solution is privatization and
introducing free market competition. In almost every state and city where there
is competition today, educational outcomes improve – often dramatically. We don’t need any more money, we need more
choice. Forcing more competition and faster improvement
among existing public and private schools. Private schools have existed basically forever,
certainly longer than any public school. And it shouldn’t surprise you, but a large
number of private schools are religious in nature. Public schools in America didn’t really
come about until after Reconstruction and by World War 2, just about every kid had access
to public education. Because as a society, we all agreed that we
all need this. And that’s essentially how it was for a
decades, everyone had access to public schools, and if you had the means and you wanted to,
you could send your kids to a private school. But in the mid 90s, a third option opened
up: charter schools. Depending on state law, these schools can
be started by parents, teachers, non-profit groups, corporations, or even government organizations. Remember this one, I have a feeling it’ll
be important later. Charter schools are privately run and publicly
funded, they typically use a different teaching style like Montessori or have some sort of
curriculum focus like college prep, fine arts, or STEM. They didn’t really take off until No Child
Left Behind was signed in 2001. Among other things, No Child Left Behind established
standards that every school had to meet, and if they don’t meet those standards, bad
things happen… If a school is unsuccessful in hitting its
annual targets for a sixth consecutive year, a restructure plan is implemented. Common options include: Turning over district
control to the state, turning the school into a charter school, or closing the school. There weren’t enough charter schools to
statistically compare them to public schools until a few years after that law was signed,
so all of the data I will be showing you starts in 2005. Which was still fourteen years ago… why
am I so old!? Then a few other laws were passed like Race
to the Top and Every Student Succeeds, and most recently the bane of all educators was
introduced: Common Core… which just seems like a way to make public schools compete
with one hand tied behind their back. Since depending on the state, charter schools
don’t necessarily have to follow that curriculum. Charter schools are a rather contentious issue
and supporters like PragerU and the Cato Institute know that, so they’ve changed the language
to School Choice. According to researchers at the University
of Arkansas – in the most comprehensive study done to date — students in school choice
programs saw their reading and math scores improve by 27 percent and 15 percent, respectively. Sounds like something we should get behind,
doesn’t it? PragerU is rather infamous for not citing
their sources, so it took some digging, but I did find it. It’s from the University of Arkansas School
Choice Demonstration Project and it comes to a rather interesting conclusion. Generally, the impacts are larger for reading
than for math, for programs outside the US relative to those within the US, and for publicly-funded
programs relative to privately-funded programs. Wait, what?! Okay so, the data is rather difficult to sift
through, but we’ll get through it together. Here it is, TOT Reading, 27% increase for
areas that have school choice programs. But here we can see that they broke it down
by International and United States. Internationally, school choice improves reading
scores by 48%, while it only improves the United States by 2%. It’s the same story for math – yes, that
says negative zero for the United States. PragerU presents this data as if school choice
programs increase scores in the US, when in reality, it increases scores by this much
Internationally, and only this much in the United States. Sounds like something we should get behind,
doesn’t it? This study, the one that PragerU cites as
proof that school choice is better, actually shows that in the United States it has basically
no effect. You can check it yourself, unlike PragerU,
I cite my sources. And while you’re checking, you might find
out that their source wasn’t peer-reviewed or published anywhere. It’s a working paper, there’s even a disclaimer
on the first page saying not to use these results without clearly stating that it is
a working paper. This was fun, let’s do another one! According to a 2015 Stanford study, not only
do charter schools provide significantly higher levels of growth in math and reading for all
students, but minority and low income students benefit disproportionately more. The minority angle is part of PragerU’s
overall school choice narrative. If you don’t support school choice, then
you’re the real racist. They actually sprinkle this into every video
they possibly can about politics and race. It’s no coincidence that Progressivism is
the common thread that binds predominately black cities where single parent homes, failing
schools, rampant poverty, and crime predominate. Opposition to school choice has kept them
trapped in failing schools. However, it’s unfair to hold minority parents
and students hostage in underperforming public schools. It’s conservatives who push for school vouchers,
which would allow all parents, not just wealthy ones, to choose their children’s school. It’s the other side that doesn’t trust
minority parents to select and appropriate school for their children. This is obviously true for wealthy parents
who can afford to send their children to any school they want, but it’s equally true
for middle class and poor parents when they have a choice. Okay wow, this is a poor family… and this
is a wealthy family? While it is technically possible, and props
to PragerU for trying to look progressive, but in the reality that most of us live in,
there’s a 70% chance that the family that sends their kids to a private school is white. In fact, 43% of all private schools in the
country are what they call “virtually all white.” PragerU is rather famous for coloring everyone
this rather neutral blue. So coloring them like this was a conscious
decision. But we’re not talking about private schools
right now, we’re talking about charter schools… and this claim that minority students do disproportionately
better… thankfully PragerU actually cited this one. This study measures success a little differently,
they tested students in charter and public schools at the beginning of the year and then
at the end of the year and calculated how many days of learning they gained or lost
compared to each other. They only did this in 41 urban areas, like
Las Vegas and New Orleans. According to this study, yes, some minority
students in charter schools did perform better on the year-end tests. Just for funsies, let’s take a look at the
break down. Black students gained 36 days of learning
in math, meaning that after a full school year, students in charter schools scored as
if they had 36 extra days of instruction, but still within a standard school year – they’re
getting more bang for their buck. They had a similar 26 days of extra learning
in reading. Hispanic students had similar gains of 22
days and 6 days, while Asian students gained 9 days of math and 0 days of reading. Which is great, I’m all for extra learning,
even if it doesn’t necessarily benefit everyone. White students on the other hand, lost 36
days of math and 14 days of reading, meaning that white students in charter schools do
significantly worse than their public school counterparts. Just to put that into perspective, 36 days
is seven weeks of lost instruction. I wonder what PragerU’s predominately white,
Republican viewership would think if after this sentence…
… minority and low income students benefit disproportionally more… They added that white students perform disproportionately
worse. This was PragerU’s source, I didn’t have
to go looking for this, they deliberately only talked about minority students in order
to show that school choice works. So enough of this, no more cherry picking
racial groups or comparing schools globally, let’s look at the data ourselves. The National Assessment of Educational Progress,
or NAEP, is a standardized test given to 4th, 8th, and 12th graders around the country every
other year. They have a handy data explorer where you
can look at the results yourself. I realize that many of you may have problems
with standardized tests, but we need some reliable measuring stick to compare schools
and this is the best one we have. It’s also what the PragerU studies use,
so it’s what I’m going to use. Here’s how you can look up the data yourself,
by selecting the subject, the grade, and then searching for the charter school variable. It creates a report which you can then use
to make charts. So, simple question, on average, nationwide,
are charter schools outperforming public schools? PragerU would have you believe that they are. But here are the 4th, 8th, and 12th grade
math scores for every year available. Here are the 4th, 8th, and 12th grade reading
scores for every year available. Not once have charter schools done better
than public schools, but in 2017 they finally tied in 4th grade reading. Is it reasonable to assume that eventually
charter schools will surpass public schools? Probably. But when PragerU tells you that they already
are – they’re lying. Not all charter schools are bad, in fact,
statistically, 17% of them do better than public schools and 46% of them perform about
the same. While the remaining 37% of them perform significantly
worse. Just to put that into perspective, if you
have a child in public school and you’re thinking of moving them to a charter, roll
a die and try to predict the number. The odds of you guessing correctly are the
odds of that school being better, about 1 in 6. Overall, nationwide, charter schools just
aren’t performing as well as public schools. Can you focus in on certain groups or states
to make the data say whatever you want? Sure, in fact let’s do that. Here’s 8th grade math in DC and Michigan…
and here are the reading scores. What the heck is going on in Michigan? Well, remember when I told you to remember
this? Depending on state law, these schools can
be started by parents, teachers, non-profit groups, corporations, or even government organizations. DC does not allow for-profit charter schools. Michigan on the other hand does, in fact 80%
of them are corporately-owned and run for-profit. Michigan is also the state Betsy DeVos is
from. So when our current Secretary of Education
pushes for school choice she’s pushing for the country to emulate the system she spearheaded
in Michigan. She even wants to take it a step further. Currently, nationwide, we spend about $10,000
per student per year in public schools, charter schools get about $7000, and private schools
have to charge tuition. Betsy DeVos wants to change that with School
Choice Vouchers, or SCVs…SCV Ready! No one actually abbreviates it I just wanted
to force that joke in. A school choice voucher would take that $10,000
of taxpayer money and attach it to the student, to go wherever they want. The money follows the student. Every child receives funding that their parents
can direct to the school of their choice – public, private, charter or even homeschool. Okay, we’re so not going to talk about homeschool. But private schools have been getting along
just fine with their tuition for centuries, they don’t need taxpayer money. This just seems to be a way to make rich schools
richer and poor schools poorer. Poorer? Is that a word? I dunno, I went to public school. There are also huge first amendment issues
with taxpayer funds going towards a religious private school… but let’s not get into
that. Teachers unions and other public school activists
argue that charter schools take money away from traditional public schools. Because they do. Since charter schools can’t grow the demand
for schools, this just means that both schools get less funding. And when you add profit into the mix, things
get even messier. A for-profit charter school will get $7000
per student, they might only spend $6000 of that and then pocket the rest. As you might have guessed, this system is
ripe for abuse. In fact, John Oliver did a segment a few years
ago talking about several of these abuse cases, where charter schools lied about attendance
or even their physical location to scam taxpayers. There are about 90,000 public schools in the
United States and only 7000 charter schools, for every three charter schools that open
in a year, two close. Whether for financial mismanagement, or low
enrollment, or low test scores. You might think this is just the free market
at work, but this isn’t a burger joint, if you have a bad burger, oh well, you’ll
have another meal in a few hours, you’ll get over it. But if you have a bad year in school, you’re
behind… maybe forever. Now, it’s not fair to only focus on the
failures of school choice. Even though they outnumber the successes two
to one. So if you’d like to see the other side of
this argument, head on over to CuriosityStream is a subscription streaming
service that offers over 2000 documentaries and nonfiction titles from some of the world’s
best filmmakers that you can access across multiple platforms. I specifically recommend the series School
Inc, which presents the pro school choice argument in perhaps the most honest way I’ve
seen yet. Networks of charter schools in Louisiana are
actually performing slightly worse than independent charters. He even cites a study that you are now quite
familiar with and can look up yourself. According to the researchers at Stanford,
charter schools in Louisiana are outperforming traditional public schools, and that’s particularly
noticeable in New Orleans. The difference isn’t enormous, but it’s
good news. You can get access to their entire library
for as little as 2.99 a month, but if you head over to
and use the promo code knowingbetter, you get your first month completely free, you’ll
also be supporting the channel when you do. Privatizing public services has rarely ever
worked out for the taxpayer, we’ve looked at prisons, infrastructure, emergency services,
and now schools, and the story is the same every time. But every time, we seem to think this will
be the one where it works. You can only benefit from competition when
you’re able to increase demand, which you’re not able to do for schools and I would hope
you wouldn’t want to do for prisons. Though they seemed to find a way. So the next time a politician tells you that
this time it’ll work, I promise, hopefully now, you’ll know better. I’d like to give a shout out to my newest
legendary patron, Daniel. If you’d like to add your name to this list
of for-profit entrepreneurs, head on over to Don’t forget to privatize that subscribe
button, follow me on Twitter and Facebook, and join us on the subreddit

100 thoughts on “Privatizing Public Services | Prisons and Schools”

  1. The cut around 15:04 was to remove half of the sentence that was pointed out to me as incorrect by one of the authors of the study. I'd rather have an awkward cut than a false statement in my video. Hope it wasn't too jarring – do check out the working paper yourself!

  2. Things I wish I learned in public school include finance management, how to apply for a loan or a job or a mortgage, how taxes work at a basic level so I can do my own paperwork, how to obtain and register a vehicle, you know, shit you need to do almost every day or at least every few years or so when you're an adult.

  3. I'm sorry if I derail the discussion and turn it towards race a bit too much, but I thought race equality is meant for us to stop analyzing people for their skin color. If that is the case, what's the difference if a wealthy family diagram shows them with dark skin and the poor with light skin?

  4. Heres a solution to public schools, how about dont lower funding for low test results, and let people choose the schools for their children instead of ramming all the kids in low income areas into the same d rated schools in some thinly veiled separate but equal bullshit

  5. Although I agree, you can't match dishonesty with dishonesty. You have your counter argument behind a pay wall. Gimme both. I'll decide. Must be homeschooling in me….just kidding.

  6. Government can't do these things, but they'll happily bankrupt the rest of us trying over and over again. Whatever scheme they attempt in the social realm will always fail, cost too much money and lead to public disenfranchisement.

  7. I agree with you about privatizing schools, but the Prager U vid makes a valid point about the teacher unions. It would have been nice if you addressed that.

  8. Prager U is why YouTube should make detecting links in videos and allowing you to click on them à la annotations a thing.

  9. Obviously i am against for-profit charter schools because they are literally profiting off of taxpayer dollars, but i really don't see the problem with school choice vouchers. To me it just sounds like the educational equivalent of UBI, which is something that i support. Simply stipulate that the voucher cannot be used at a for-profit school and i see no problem with it.

  10. If it's not already in your list of future topics to cover, you should dig into and do a video on Common Core – it's right up your ally as a research topic: just like a lot of other things in this video, it's little understood and everyone just kind of nods along and agrees that it's some horrible extension of ineffective government or whatever. One of the common rebuttals I see about it is the idea that "they should just look at what successful countries do and do that!" as if that's some kind of arcane knowledge that the people who designed common core hadn't thought of and actually did…

  11. Privatization has its places, however it’s only in places where there are customers with free will to choose competitors.

    School is an example of this. I can choose another school if this private school is garbage. They will satisfy my needs or join the large graveyard of failed. Common core is something stupid. They need or remove it to allow competition to thrive. Make common core the skeleton, not the body. This will force charter schools to innovate and provide better conditions than public schools.

    If it’s not profitable but necessary is when the government should steps in. Jails, Police, Medical/healthcare, military,

  12. After I went to a private high school, my younger brother went to a public charter school that's part of the public high school it's physically located in. We couldn't afford to send him to the Catholic school I went to, which has only increased tuition in recent years. Thanks to the charter school, he was able to be in appropriate level classes for his intellectual prowess. So, yes the current system is sloppy; but there's probably no good way to fix it without stopping all schools for a year to restructure.

  13. "…can public services with a relatively stable demand be run like a business?"

    You are a part of the problem as you are far away from a solution.

  14. Oooohhhhh….so that's whyvthe department of sanitation has so much corruption on TV shows…I thought they just made stuff up

  15. In other countries like mine, the government allows all the schools to exist while provide free universal education to the age of 18 or highschool. So you have a choice but the curriculum is standardized. And the teachers are also trained standardly. So whether you are rich or poor you learn the same thing and use the same books. At the end you have a nationwide standardised tests which work amazingly because you all did the same thing. There are also checks and balances to account for marginalisation and things like lack of resources such as labs. Which means everybody has a shot of going to college regardless of where you came from depending on your effort.

  16. What about the CHOICE. If a charter school is better at educating kids then the surrounding public schools then parents will want to put their kids in that charter school, and the charter school becomes successful. If the charter school preforms worse than the surrounding public schools than parents will take their kids out of the charter school if favor of the public schools and the charter school goes out of business. This makes it almost impossible for a charter school to preform worse than the surrounding public schools and still exist!!!!!

  17. A government schooled population is ignorant in many critical places like knowing DEMOCIDE, the real effect of unions, and effects of minimum wage etc.

  18. Running a government like you would a business is a retarded idea as some things just work better when managed by the state and paid by taxpayers, take for example early private fire departments where sure they would show up but would just sit there and watch if you didn't have the money to pay for them. However with state run services they must show up and must try their hardest to save you and your house because your taxes keep them paid and the people in them for the most part actually want to save you and your assets.

    Now can some private institutions that hold the same role as state owned institutions do better? Yes if your looking for something such as Sex Reassignment Surgery or any form of cosmetic surgery you will want a specialist surgeon and if you can afford it private schools MIGHT give overwhelmingly better education in exchange for bleeding your wallet dry. Tax does not reduce costs of anything, it merely changes how your being fucked over from "The government takes this money and reinvests it in public services" into "rich fucks in a room steal twice as much as you would if you merely paid tax to the state". In regards to home school i am now violently opposed to it and with good reason as i was in it for 2 years since my primary school's principal was a dick and i couldn't tolerate it to the point i'd often just refuse to go, i am now in highschool and smashing through most of my tests (i'm a yr9) and its honestly been quite fun.

  19. The occupancy clauses are absolutely insane. The government people who signed those contracts on behalf of the public should be in prison themselves.

  20. I think that you are missing the forest for the trees as far as charter vs public schools. The most important part about charter schools is that if they aren't working, they get shut down and they go away. Its a messy process, but the upside is that they are more agile than public schools and have much more flexibility within their human resources departments, which then prioritizes the kids, and if they don't, they get shutdown.

    I think that it is also easy to draw incorrect conclusions with what are ultimately meaningless statistics. National averages mean less than nothing because nobody attends school nationally, statewide, or even county wide. Kids are attending a single school, locally. The figures are so broad that they are essentially cosmetic. Each classroom is idiosyncratic, which requires an idiosyncratic approach, which is why broad national policies that obviously are very beneficial to affluent white majority schools are not having the same results in impoverished minority majority schools.

  21. As a future educator, thank you. God thank you. I've heard many of these statistics before. The more we can get this out, the better.

  22. So, the Overweening Power of the State should be used to regulate every facet of our lives? Those dumb private citizens would never survive without guidance from the State.

  23. Private schools are almost always better than public ones. And honestly, being someone who has lived exclusively in smaller communities that have privately funded volunteer fire departments, I can say from everything I have seen they are also much better than taxpayer funded city departments. The city FD near where I used to live was either perpetually on strike, or cutting jobs due to lack of funds (the city in general was run terribly), and had way older equipment than the nearby VFDs. I am sure there are exceptions to this, but that's my experience anyways.

    As for prisons, privately owned ones don't really sound like a great idea, but honestly I don't really have much knowledge on that subject. Although I tend to lean way more towards a libertarian/small government view, I think law enforcement (including prison and corrections) need to be government run. Yeah, I'm not a big fan of government in general, but I'm less of a fan of some wealthy individual owning the cops and/or prisons. Ever see RoboCop? Yeah. OCP were not the good guys!

  24. Nearly every service mentioned in the video as 'privatized' was also subsidized, and in some cases monopolized. This is a misrepresentation of privatization, as economic fascism. Not surprising then that it turns out to be little better the socialism of 'public' ownership. The funding is coming from the same place (taxes), and government bureaucrats still play a role in directing how money is spent and services are delivered. Government becomes the customer, but continues to call the shots and pay the bills.

    This leaves out another kind of privatization entirely—the kind where services and the funding for those services are both divorced from government. This alternative, more-accurate definition isn't even mentioned.

    The intent of the video seems to be to smear 'privatization' with a list of bad outcomes, and thus to blame the private sector for any downsides of a public-private mix. In other contexts the same kind of partnership might be labeled 'socialization'. If government pays the rent on privately owned apartments, we don't call that 'privatized housing'. We call that what it is—subsidization.

  25. The one thing about bad charter schools, is they can be 'fired'. I read a report that their were multiple people employed by NYC who were 'teaching' an empty room as it was too expensive to fire them.

    You also showed national was much worse than Michigan/DC. So are their places where charters do better than Nationwide? That is what one would think.

    The SCOTUS ruled on religious education costs is clear. If a school does something unrelated to religion, then they can get money. For example, if the their is a free lunch program than they can get that money. For math tuition, they can. For gym, they can. Religion studies, out of pocket.

    The best part of the story, is you at least state their are other points of view, even if you did cherry pick which segment to show.

  26. Honestly so weird to see someone praising the NHS, everyone in England bitches about how shit it is. The principal isn't bad, they just don't get enough funding unfortunately. I can't say I've ever had a bad experience, but I've never needed emergency care, only basic doctors visits

  27. In all states that passed 3 strike laws and mandatory minimum sentences, those laws were passed by The People. We were sick to death of the turn style merry go round criminal justice system that saw murders, rapists and other violent offenders being released after 5 or so years simply because there wasn't enough room in the prisons.
    You don't know what it was like. America was a damn war zone.

  28. As a high school student currently, I feel like the biggest issue with education in the US is teaching mathematics more than anything, or anything relating to it for that matter like chemistry which happens to use a lot of it. I genuinely feel as though I haven’t learned much at all in math since middle school, I constantly struggle with those classes and the system of teaching it is flat out god awful, nothing but vaguely explaining how to do a relatively simple problem, but then assigning a ridiculous amount of work on something you barely know how to do, or have no idea whatsoever. With subjects like history, English, etc., I actually perform well and understand the material since it’s thoroughly taught, but it’s always math that I’ve struggled with. My teacher said before that “struggling is apart of the process” and that apparently struggling is proven to help us retain information since we struggled through it, learned it, and now remember it better. What? How? What results have you gotten that proves this? Why not just teach it to where I understand it and not have me struggle and ultimately give up on learning it? It’s frustrating not being taught anything but being expected to do so much damn work.

  29. Your take on schools is way off. "Schools can't grow like a business". You say this because you say the only way to increase demand is to increase population size. This completely ignores competition between schools for students. If your logic made sense you could apply this to housing, or anything else that has a generally stable demand based on population size. I guess according to your logic home renovators should be public companies too…

  30. 16:30. Well considering about 70% of the US population is white that shouldn't be so surpising… Perhaps you meant to say something more?

  31. Oh no, bad charter schools are closing? Somehow that's bad? What about bad public schools? Of course any government entity is the closest thing you will find to eternal life in this world.

  32. Schools? Yes. Prisons? Absolutely not. When you put a businessman in charge of punishing and imprisoning people, you pretty much are handing them a license to be a legal mob boss. And not a lenient one either.

    But with schools, especially public schools, the whole state funding issue comes into play. I’m currently in high school, and throughout my middle school years, I found that funding was always desperately needed, despite the fact that everything seems to cost money nowadays. Our school couldn’t afford salt to put out on the pavement, so naturally, preventing car accidents was their first priority, and instead they put gravel everywhere, which seems smart until you realize they didn’t have a separate space for kids outside besides a gated off parking lot. And they had to put gravel in the same place that kids play basketball, so, you see the problem? There was also a strange shortage of funding for athletic programs, for example, all the track equipment save for the uniforms, was outdated or damaged. And I was stunned to find out that the brand new mats for high jump cost $9,000, or at least that’s what they told us. There’s no way that they actually cost that much right? Anyways, even at my high school, they tried to make a sky bridge and ran out of money, and in my Metal Shop class, we have to constantly reuse metal that’s already been welded over a dozen times. Some teachers have to teach multiple classes, such as my health teacher who also teaches a geometry class.

    Point is, my town has some sucky uses of funding.

    And before you start talking about the issue of overcharging parents for the children’s education, I support the voucher system, in which the government provides the money to parents, and parents can choose where to send their student, forcing schools to compete and get better.

  33. You say here that charter schools get an average of 7k/student, and public schools 10k/student, in government money. And yet the numbers are just slightly worse for charter schools. Aren't they competing at a disadvantage as far as funding and producing similar results, thus at least comparable? And this only over a relatively short period in history (which i should say, you mention).

    As for the jail thing, it's definitely disturbing that they can lobby government and have an effect on laws, but I see that as a failure of government (in that it is easily influenced and always growing) rather than proof that private companies can't manage money well enough to provide the same services cheaper as compared to government (or some variant thereof). While the companies running these prisons may be giving government that push, it's not OK that government is so susceptible to it, from them or from other sources.

  34. Hmm. I don't think your argument necessarily holds. I think when evaluating an economic policy, we also have to examine what the incentives are and regulations that may distort those. One of the biggest areas you glossed over was that a jailable (sp?) offense expanded. This would be the government's fault. The other issue with "private prisons" is the profits are private but the costs are socialized. Taxpayer money funds the contracts. Privatization has to have profit/loss.

    You also had a false comparison at the end with charter schools closing. If a charter school closes, a kid can go elsewhere. Public schools don't close. I'm not even a fan of charter schools.

    Good video though! Learned a lot!

  35. 11:53 “Because as a society, we all agree that we need this.'' (Re: schools.) Not true.

    See former New York state school teacher of the year John Taylor Gatto, author of “Weapons of Mass Instruction'', developmental psychologist Peter Gray, author of “Free To Learn'', former school teacher Grace Lewellyn, author of “The Teenage Liberation Handbook'' and the Sudbury Valley type schools.

    “We don't need no thought control.''
    ~ Pink Floyd

  36. I think the logic for charter schools is that consumers (parents/students) want quality education, and will therefore provide pressures to guide competitive enterprises to serve those wants. While it might reduce demand for public schools, it also reduces costs/responsibilities to those public schools.

    The same does not hold true for prisons (prisoners don't shop for prisons). Government handing over responsibilities to private companies does not ipso facto introduce competition.

  37. Had me on the prison topic among others but when the girl came on the screen and said the school system is broken you lost me… The school system in my hometown of Newark New Jersey is broken. If you want to talk about corrupt politicians or you want to talk about it's a black impoverished community okay no problem.. but the schools are definitely overcrowded I don't know about that 16 students to one teacher ratio.. weve got old books old supplies underpaid teachers crumbling classrooms

  38. 11:40 It's false that public education didn't exist before reconstruction. As soon as the pilgrims landed in the 1600s, then enacted a law requiring literacy. You're off by more than 2 centuries. Is that due to ignorance or dishonesty? Free schools existed in America long before Reconstruction. America was the first country to provide free education. Fail or lie or both?

  39. I know of a graduating class whose diplomas where useless to them. The school had lost their accreditation. I wouldn’t want to send my kids to a school that passes children who are illiterate or don’t understand basic math.

  40. Ya know I never understood the flak core seems to get – often I see it associated with math education. But I LIKED learning those techniques while tutorial nieces and nephews, and helping them understand each one. I've never seen it from the other side I guess.

  41. @16:52 "a concious choice" – This tiny blurb in your video is utterly unimportant, and "shows your concious choice" – Everyone attempts to show diversity in all kinds of situtations and it all feels forced. You got several slam dunks on PragerU over their choice of statistics, this just… meh…

  42. I think it makes sense to have a mix of public and private industry. Some things just work better as public service. Unfortunately the Cult of capitalism is very powerful in America.

  43. Our education experience in FL
    (For my oldest)
    VPK – Private Catholic school
    Kindergarten first school- charter school and they couldn’t handle her so they kicked her out.
    Second kindergarten – public school that only went up to kindergarten. We made it through the year.
    First grade: got kicked out of our first public school. Decided to start medication for her ADHD.
    First grade: finished the rest of the year at a public school for special kids/kids with behavioral needs.

    As a parent I decided my child needed an extra year of first grade.
    We got the McKay scholarship and my child gets $4900 towards her education at a private school. The school we chose charges around 8000 for tuition. They only charge me 1,200 on top of her scholarship funds so they are getting jipped out of almost $2000.
    The school is PHENOMENAL and was exactly what my oldest needed.
    1. Jesus and 2. Small class size 3. Teachers that have fine-tuned their balance of loving her and being firm with her !!!

    I will do whatever it takes to keep her and my 2 younger kids at this school.
    They have been super generous in helping us with tuition and I think our out-of-pocket tuition expenses for this year for 3 kids is only $5000 so this school is getting less than 10k to educate my 3 kids this year !!!

  44. "Privatization is supposed to lower costs, improve efficiency, and improve quality. Does that line of thinking work in public services?"

    Answer: Yes, specially in public services.

    Funny even if you are a hardcore leftist the first thing you do if you have kids and money is send them to a private school. Why is that? US rail road history; New York's Subway history… privatization got them done.

  45. Guuuuuurrrllll…16 kids? Lol I had at least 24. It’s gross. And the schools that r inner city generally have up to 30+. It’s pretty fucking gross on everyone.

  46. Isn't it interesting how the pro-school-choice people use the language of free markets and competition and yet never actually advocate for a real free market in education but rather for some form of mixed system

  47. This is about private prisons. Back in the day; around 1988-90, I had a school assignment where each student in a class (I actually don't remember what class it was.) randomly drew the name of three alumni from my University. These alumni had agreed to be to allow the students to talk to them. Among other things, we were to find out if their careers were in or related to the major they graduated with.

    I forgot what the first two people did , though I do remember their careers didn't match very closely to the degree they graduated with. The third guy had some kind of business degree; in either Finance or Accounting, and he was the founder, part owner and CEO of a fairly new private jail and prison company. His business office was in his home, near San Diego, CA. He told me his company had started two years before and that private jails and prisons were the coming thing. He was in his late 50's and told me what industries and companies he had worked for. He had been a CFO of one of them, but I don't remember what company or industry. He talked in general terms how he could hire people to run his jails and prisons more cheaply, and do other things more cheaply, than any city or state. He did have this one business complaint. Once a jail or prison was built it has virtually no salvage value at the end of its economic life. Plus, the land it was on might lose most of its resale value. The reason is that high security jails and especially prisons are generally built like fortresses. What ever salvage value remains is overshadowed by the huge expense needed to dismantle such a building. So the land usually wasn't purchased by his company, only leased. Plus, it was important to specify in their contracts that the cities who used his jails were responsible for taking down the site once they were no longer using it.

    The conversation was a very friendly one until I innocently asked him if states cared about things like the recidivism rates of his inmates. He seemed to take it as an accusation, though I was just curious about the different types of state and city regulations his company had to comply with. A part of our earlier conversation had been about such regulations. Who knows, maybe if I hadn't pissed that guy off with that one question he might have offered me a job in that horrible, depressing, though lucrative business.

  48. Your assertion that building another burger restaurant raises demand is simply false. Demand exists without regard for supply. If more people buy burgers when more are available, it's only because the demand was already there, but was unmet. That's how it is with private education. Create more private schools, and the pent-up demand has a place to be met. Private schools then compete with each other and with public schools. Competition almost never makes things worse. School vouchers simply make it possible for parents to send their children to private schools without having to pay for the public school their children don't attend. Public school advocates don't want vouchers because they don't want parents to have a viable means of exercising choice.

  49. Your assertion that building another burger restaurant raises demand is simply false. Demand exists without regard for supply. If more people buy burgers when more are available, it's only because the demand was already there, but was unmet. That's how it is with private education. Create more private schools, and the pent-up demand has a place to be met. Private schools then compete with each other and with public schools. Competition almost never makes things worse. School vouchers simply make it possible for parents to send their children to private schools without having to pay for the public school their children don't attend. Public school advocates don't want vouchers because they don't want parents to have a viable means of exercising choice.

  50. Emergency medical services would coast less for everyone except the person who uses it…. okay what’s the problem? Maybe people would stop abusing EMS so much. Only about 8% of 911 calls are actual emergencies.

  51. And now, lecture us on the positives of public school. If there's one. And next time, try to explain all the initiatives that the government already tried and failed to improve public school. And then you'll see why Charter school is the only option left.

  52. Actually adding another burger joint decreases demand instesd of increasing demand. It increases supply. If you got the most basic part of economics wrong im suddenly skeptical of any new information you give me

  53. No human or group can earn a right to impose on others that only "they" have a right to provide a good or service. It is a moral purpose of government to hold for public schools a monopoly against the wishes of parents. The notion that only "Democrats" are special or intellectual enough decide what is best for these tax dollars needs to be broken.

  54. Competition can only work when you can increase the customer base therefor only "government" employees can provide teaching? Is the purpose of diabetes research to increase the customer base? No? We'll that should only be the domain of bureaucrats then! I'm so disappointed because I like this channel.

  55. Lol I am from Wexford County. And an ambulance ride from my home to the hospital because of chest pains after surgery was VERY expensive and I live about 5 or six miles from the hospital. So yeah. It is very expenses. Maybe if there were competing ambulance companies it would drive costs down, but there isn't. It's one company. Period. And it's expensive even after insurance.

  56. The statement that "you can only benefit from competition if you can increase demand" is vague and does not contradict that idea that school competition can improve overall education. First of all it depends on who the "you" is, and what the demand is for. While it's true that we can't increase demand for schools, we can increase demand for quality education. And if "you" means the school or corporations, I'll go along with you but if "you" is students then of course they can benefit from competition.
    If there are three schools kids could reasonably attend, based on distance from their house, and one of those schools outperforms the others. Better test scores, higher sense of satisfaction for parents and students then it stands to reason that people will want to go to that school (Greater demand). If each kid means dollars for the school doesn't it also stand to reason that the better performing school can use that money to grow and take on more students?

  57. Almost 0 military contractors are mercs or combat ready. For fuck sake, their mostly fat and old techs that work on aircraft of for HP field services… They do good work, but they get hazard pay.
    Also, if they weren't so often deployed, they would get paid less than typical service members, but they spend as much time in the field as grunts so they've earned it imo.
    The private EMS is a good thing. Its 83c per month because people are much much less likely to use it if they know they will be paying for it. It discourages people who aren't actually in an emergency and saves the vehicles for people who are. Another reason the price is so high is because insurance continues to just say yes to whatever the cost. You are talking about out of pocket.
    Private schools are cheaper and almost always better for the students.

  58. Violent crime RATE is on the decrease in the US, despite property crime rate increasing. Even though the RATE has decreased, the population has increased. If the rate of violent crime decrease is less than the population increase, there are more violent crimes. Let's not use tweaked statistics as facts or points of argument and if we must use statistics, let's use the raw data in its proper context.

  59. That was really eye opening, thank you for this video!

    On the topic of school choice: I don't get that. We in Germany can choose to what schools we sent our children (school type of course depends on grades). I'm kinda shocked that this is not the case in the US given the whole freedom thingy.

  60. Capitalism works to bring to best goods and services to the public. In its relentless quest for more profit, Capitalism does immeasurable harm to the public.

  61. I don't have a problem with privatizing to save tax money because of government bloat/waste. It is the greed that is the issue.
    If you want to make millions, go CEO somewhere else. There are plenty of people that would be willing to run a prison to benefit society, save the tax-payers and improve the life of those less fortunate that have gone down a bad path…
    Every year more and more laws are passed making law abiding citizens into criminals, and ridiculous minimum sentencing. This is criminal abuse of the criminal justice system. Those responsible need to pay.

    EDIT: Also, why the F are public infrastructure (roads, bridges), being sold to foreign interests, and who is approving these deals.

  62. Looking at the stats alone isn't really fair either considering the public schools receive a lot of money from taxes. The stats should be compared to the amount of funding per pupil and test scores. IMO that would be a better comparison for the argument presented by both this channel and PragerU or anyone else for that matter.

  63. You are missing the underlying facts of why the prison population has increased. They are rebuilding the infrastructure of various areas that became non-tax producing. They're projecting the length of stay and the amount of Monies the inmates would generate through prescriptive programs and their residency. This allows the municipalities to issue municipal bonds for the purpose of rebuilding their infrastructure as they project incrementally raising taxes in the surrounding areas. This was done in coordination with state and federal law where statutes were actually changed to have what are called tolling periods for the purpose of filing Appeals. collateral appeals were limited to one year after the final first appeal right time expired. The government realized that the lack of Education of the average citizen to be able to learn the legal procedure and file an appeal and to obtain the records to investigate what underlying issues they might have to either prove their innocence or to go back to trial could be hindered by a procedural process that they were able to implement by the tolling timeline. because of this change in statutory norms the government was able to also obtain greater tax dollars for the futile process every time an incarcerated citizen tried to file a collateral appeal. Prescriptive programming dollars are matched by federal funding for the purpose of alleged Rehabilitation because the prisons deem the inmate to be disabled in order to obtain Federal funding for those programs. the prisons can then continually add additional prescriptive programs to ensure incarceration is maintained for longest periods of time.

  64. 1) look up how many rap record labels own interest in private prisons
    2) The government spends 9k/year per student. If we parents got a 9k voucher that I could use my voucher at any school I wanted then private school education would be accessible to all. The government is notoriously inefficient and the public schools are failing. Nothing makes better products and efficient budget like a free market. all parents getting the same price voucher and picking their schools would eliminate the income-education gap.

    Prisons want people to be prisoners forever – there's no "customer satisfaction rating" Schools need to be accountable. Acton Academy has managed to educate children on their individual level (meaning a 4th grader can take 6th grade math course if they qualify) for 40% of the price. Charter schools and private schools provide better education.

    Pulling the top down is not the way to level the playing field. Parents should have the power to choose.

  65. sooo… if Google or Apple started a tech charter school for students who qualify then you would be against it because it's for profit??
    Also, who cares if a parent uses their voucher in a religious school – it's not state compelled religion. the "no prayer in school" problem was that it was compelled. If the parents are allowed to choose then that's legal. It's freedom of religion not freedom from religion.
    Vouchers would not take money from public schools – it would hold public schools accountable. Public schools would have to earn their pay – not a terrible thing.

  66. I have a simple question for the people arguing against public funding for charter schools:
    How would you feel if the federal government refused to give you public grants or subsidized student loans for University unless you attended a public University in "your district", regardless of how shitty it was–or even if it didn't have the program you wanted to major in? Hmmm?? What if they responded to your objections with "Quit whining, fundamentalist; you can still pay entirely out of pocket to attend a private University!"
    Because THAT'S the type of system you are arguing in favor of when you oppose publicly-funded charter schools. Doesn't seem like such a good idea when you look at it that way, does it? All charter schools do is give parents the right to send their kids to a decent school where they have a chance at success, regardless of their location. If the taxes parents have paid for schooling are being wasted by corrupt administrators (and they are), then it is a fundamental human right that those taxes go to fund something else–like a charter school.

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