Sunday, October 28, 2012

Arlen Winther for Mattawan School Board

The Gazette has an article on the Mattawan School Board election.  There are two open seats up, as Grace Borgfjord and Jeff Dufon are not running for reelection.  Borgfjord is the democrat nominee for county treasurer.

Mattawan school board candidates offer range of perspectives on need for new facilities

There are five candidates.  Only one, Arlen Winther, opposes tax increases.  The other four all support yet another bond measure to raise taxes.

Mattawan already tried to raise taxes twice in 2011, first by 80 million, then by 60 million.  Both attempts were rejected by 55% of voters.  Winther actively opposed both measures.  He is the only candidate who represents the majority of voters.

The other four candidates talk about the need to better "explain" the tax increase, i.e. propagandize the voters with guilt trips about how it's "for the children".  Most of them don't appear interested in listening to the voters, and understanding their difficult financial situations.

Some candidates argue that raising school taxes is necessary for economic development.  I don't doubt that "good schools" correlate with economic development, but correlation is not causation.  The main factor producing "good schools" is good students.  If the populations of Mattawan and Benton Harbor switched places, Mattawan schools would suddenly be bad, and Benton Harbor schools would suddenly be good.  None of the candidates provide evidence that raising taxes would help the economy.

Vote for Arlen Winther.


Concerned Voter said...

In doing some research to figure out which candidates deserve my vote, I came across this. It became quite clear who wouldn't be getting my vote as soon as I read "The main factor producing "good schools" is good students. If the populations of Mattawan and Benton Harbor switched places, Mattawan schools would suddenly be bad, and Benton Harbor schools would suddenly be good."

That is arguably the most ignorant thing I have ever read. Further, if one reads between the lines, it is a racial slam. What an interesting choice to use Benton Harbor as the antithesis to Mattawan. This candidate's ignorance is trumped only by his arrogance.

No matter if one is for or against bond proposals, a silly statement like "The main factor producing "good schools" is good students" shows how out of touch this candidate is with reality. These are no longer one room school houses, Mr. Winther. Mattawan schools rank in the top 3% of Michigan not because of being GIVEN good students. It is because they DEVELOP good students.

This candidacy is a blatantly selfish act. Mr. Winther doesn't want to help the school or the students. He simply wants to protect his tax dollars. While the latter is understandable, this tactless approach to doing so is an embarrassment.

Conservative First said...

That was my comment, not Mr. Winther's. Have you ever actually studied this issue? Here's a book by someone who has.

By the way, what's your explanation for why every effort to fix 'bad schools' over the last fifty years (including lots more money) has failed?