And, they may even be correct in holding that belief, while ignoring that their unwillingness to support fundamental change to education may well harm school districts less fortunate than their own, or that their own district has problems they are either unaware of or do not seem to affect their child.
Congress benefits from the fact that it is an irreplaceable institution. One may think what ever one does about it, while resting fully assured that there will be a congress next month, next year, and next decade. And the bar is set low for the congressional seat remaining in the hands of the incumbent, in convincing 51% of the electorate. Of more relevance is that congressmen are giving their constituents pretty much exactly what they want; benefits without the pesky requirement that they be paid for by their recipients.
Even people on the political right are not immune from believing two conflicting things at the same time, which is called cognitive dissonance in the head shrinking business, with many of them claiming to receive No benefits from the federal or state governments. The recent fiscal cliff crisis highlighted the naivete within that contention where it was revealed that milk prices might rise, double even, to $7/gallon in some markets. Most people don’t understand how we can subsidize a gallon of milk to the extent of the same price as what we pay for a gallon of milk. Similarly, they fail to see how that situation makes all milk drinkers welfare queens within a system they certainly did not choose.
The reason the same old-same old goes on is because of the same old-same old cognitive dissonance of an American public that thinks itself independent, relying on the government for nothing, and yet up to its eyeballs in government subsidized efforts they never consciously see. One does not become popular within ones community by going about pronouncing all farmers, big and small, welfare queens and the public their major enabler. Nor is it popular to observe that most government efforts, at least the ones enjoying the most popularity, are nothing more than trying to get something done…it doesn’t matter if the something is either necessary or desirable…by getting someone else to pay for it, in whole or in part. “Good local governance” is defined as one in which its management is adept at getting state funds for projects and services the citizens of the community would much rather not pay for given the choice.
We’re not becoming Europe; we are Europe. Nothing will change until the collapse occurs, hopefully soon.