I have tried to address points that I have not heard addressed often enough. I have many other ideas that others share and have expressed. If you would like to discuss any of these further please contact me.
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Parents should be able to choose between schools within the school district and not be forced into only the nearest one. They should be responsible for transportation to the selected school. Schools in large districts should be run with different philosophies with parents' choosing which one is best for their children.
Currently public schools claim to be non-religious, but many teach the religion of Hedonism. Parents should be able to select the religious instruction provided their children as well as the religious background. One answer for high population areas is to have different schools affiliated with different religions, permit parental selection of the school and the type and amount of religous instruction. Most schools would support multiple religions, including some teaching Hedonism for those parents who want their children to learn and live that religion.
Every person is unique and learns differently. Education thus should be customized to each student to maximize what they can learn in ways that work best for them.
Permit vouchers for students who elect not to use the public schools for primary and/or secondary education. These vouchers should provide about 80% of the funding the student would have recieved in the public school for private scholl education. For home schoolers, vouchers could be used for purchasing school textbooks, supplies, lab use, sports activities (at public schools), etc.
Students should be taught at their level of thinking without regard to their age. They should mix with students of many ages to develop better interaction skills. Students should be grouped by the level of learning and the pace of learning that they can handle. Physical education should be grouped by size and agility of the students.
Permit Adults to re-enter high school to enhance their skills up to a reasonable level of ability. This should include some adults with High School Diplomas and/or GEDs. Any adult who is lacking fundamental math or English skills should be able to go back to high school to acquire the skills that the educational system failed to teach in the first place. In particular those who pay property tax to the school district should be able to take advantage of the public schools in this way.
Modify the laws to permit discipline in the schools. Some forms of discipline, such as spanking, may require parental consent or parental involvement.
Parents should be allowed some choice in choosing between the different teachers in the same school teaching the same subjects.
Promote competition at all levels in education, particularly where public funding is used.
Promote professionalism in education by treating teachers as individuals, evaluated and paid on their skills and abilities, eliminate all union membership requirements, eliminate bias against non-union members, and publicly recognize excellence in teaching. This would be in public school cases facilitated by recognizing professionals in government positions.
Parents should be provided detailed profiles of potential teachers for their children. These profiles should include moral, political, and religous views. Parents then should be permitted to exclude certain teachers from teaching their children.
Reduce the non-learning standard regulations in education, particular those established to empower the National Education Association and its anti-family agenda.
Replace all Federal Student Grants (that do not require repayment) with 0% Loans to be paid as a 1% (or more) additional income tax for the student until repaid.
Schools should be open most of the year, with parents able to select a month or two when their students get off.
Establish skill-based standards and not time spent in the classroom to determine completion of various levels of education. I would have a number of different standards, including one or two showing achievement beyond what it typically required for high school. These should be subject-specific with overall evaluations based off the collective subject skills. Currently, High School Diplomas are not the same across high schools and College Degrees also do not compare. Today they represent more about the passage of time in the school rather than what the student acheived. The good private high schools give a better education than many colleges.
It should be allowable for individual schools (districts) to require that all students perform up to 30 minutes worth (non-paid) of chores around the school each day.
Students should be required to pay for damages to school porperty entrusted to them. Consider just the case of public school text books; many of these are returned at the end of the school year in much poorer condition than what they were provided in; students should be required to pay for excessive damage (a significant percentage of the purchase price) of these books.
One of the best forms of learning a subject is teaching that subject to another. Students would benefit both as teachers and students to teach younger students subjects that they have mastered. If a student does a lot of teaching they should be compensated for it.
Teachers who achieve the largest improvement on their students' performances should recieve bonuses.
Teachers should be pay by how well they teach the students, measured by the amount and quality of learning achieved by the students, and not on the basis of Educational Degrees, length of service, or membership in any organization.
By allowing local schools to specialize in different areas, they can better compete for students, and provide better overall service. This includes grade schools focused on certain grades, such as K-3 or 4-6.
Each state should allow and recognize covenant marriage (between a man and a woman), that is marriage for life and very difficult to dissolve.
Parents should be allowed to give their children alcohol and teach them how to responsibly consume it. They should also be legal responsible for any trouble their children get into under the influence of alcohol they gave them.
If two spouses work 48 hours a week for an organization, they should be recognized as full-time employees for benefits even if neither spouse would individually qualify.
The United States Government and its courts have tended to favor the religions of Hedonism and Atheism over other established religions, granting them privledges in governmental locations that are not shared by the other religions. This is a violation of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution and should cease and be remedied immediately.
Governments should not promote immorality in any way. Promotion of Immorality includes, but is not limited to, the distribution of condoms in high schools, supporting sexual intercourse outside of marriage, advocating the homosexual lifestyle, and permitting the murder of innocents through abortion.
Allow the production and sales of generic drugs of patented drugs earlier than normal for patents, but with royalties (such as 5 to 10% of the retail price) to the inventor based on time remaining on the patent.
Conduct audits of federal benefits programs looking for those who are abusing the programs. I would recommend looking accross programs and Consolidating the Federal Benefit Programs would make it a lot easier. Heavily penalize those who abuse the system.
Currently many government agencies provide benefits to citizens, by consolidating them, reducing the overhead and red tape, while integrating the information used, significant reductions in the cost to provide the benefits can be made. More effective auditing can also be performed.
Eliminate Agriculture Subsidies and allow free market forces to manage prices.
The government should not subsidize any corporations, whether through price supports, tariffs, etc.
Establish an actual (currently contrary to the media one does not exist) Social Security Trust Fund that invests in stocks of U.S. firms to be used ten to fifteen years out in the future for payment to Social Security beneficiaries. I would allocate $100 Billion annually to this fund for the next ten years.
Require that all federal expenditures clearly list the cost of overhead versus the cost of benefits. This would show where improvement in how the benefits are administered is needed.
Instead of providing foreign aid in cash, aid from the United States government should be provided in American goods selected to help the people in those countries (rather than geared to the leaders).
Whenever government bails out corporations or individuals, they should have a higher tax rate until their amount of the bailout (plus interest) is repaid.
Amend the U.S. Constitution to grant the President of the United States a line item veto. Congress has proven itself unable to resist padding bills to support their special interests at the cost of the nation as a whole. The president represents all people and should be allowed to stop the pork.
Currently in the United States, medical costs are way too high, partly caused by excessive requirements on the health care providers and laws that permit exorbitant and very discriminatory drug prices. Permit some medical providers more freedom to determine what is necessary to safeguard their patients. In addition, advanced full disclosure of medical pricing should be required. Also allow individuals to opt for lawyer-free medicine with siginicant reductions in the cost of health care. Permit generic drugs to enter the market earlier.
Private Airport Security and establish standards of performance. Permit the states and cities to determine how airport security personnel are hired, trained, and employed.
Convert parts of the federal government to competitive contracts with corporations to provide the same services. This should be done to foster competition and allow free market pressures to reduce the overhead currently within those functions. The Government would end up with a small policy setting group and audit functions overseeing the private firms. Multiple contractors should be selected in each geographical area.
Privatize the U.S. Post Office and establish federal contracts providing full US coverage of all deliveries (default carriers for each place).
Strongly enforce the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to promote local phone service competition. Grant financial relief to disadvantaged competitors paid by the abusive monopoly. The lack of enforcement of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 is one major contributor to the industry's troubles in 2000-2002.
Promote free trade internationally, including no tariffs on imported goods.
Encourage the formation of non-profit organizations to provide low cost quality housing.
Modify federal laws to make it easier to deploy alternate energy sources, such as nuclear, wind, tidal, or solar power. Grant tax deferments to encourage research into new ways of implementing these sources.
By replacing part of the welfare benefit with clothes, massed produced (with the resultant reduced costs) simple durable clothes, the government improve the quality of welfare benefits while reducing costs. Designer clothing would be considered luxuries and thus not covered and serve as motivation for the recipient to find employment.
By replacing part of the welfare benefit with food, the government improve the quality of welfare family's life. This is useful as many of the adult welfare receivers are poor money managers and do not always place their children's nutrition above other things, such as tobacco, entertainment, and alcohol.
The Security & Exchange Commission (SEC) should require that executives provide advanced notificaiton (a month or more) about their stock transactions. Note that some transactions might be conditional on stock price, i.e. trigger orders.
The Security & Exchange Commission (SEC) should require that auditors have no conflict of interest with SEC-governed traded corporations. This include using other services of the auditor or affliated companies.
The Death Penalty should only be permitted in cases, where imprisioning (without parole) the convict is not sufficient to guarantee further loss of life, such as the case with some terrorists, whose organization will terrorize in order to demand the release of the convict.
Currently, unions have a monopoly on representing certain employees among certain companies or government organizations. This results in many employees being misrepresented by the union with views advocated by their union in which they object. By giving people the right to join an alternate union which would have the right to negotiate freely with the hiring corporation or government, individuals would be better served.
Abortion is the deliberate killing of a human life in the womb of its mother or in some cases outside the womb as well, and as such should be banned in all its forms for any reason. In the United States, to accomplish this will probably require a Human Rights Begin at Conception Amendment to the United States constitution.
Human Cloning should be banned thoughout the world. It leads to the devaluing of human life.
In 1973, the United States Supreme Court reestablished slavery in the United States, by declaring the human beings still in the womb of their mother are property of the mother and permiting her to kill her child in the womb.
Amend to United States Constitution to affirm that Human Right, Citizenship, & Personhood begins at Conception.
Many candidates for political office slander their opponents right before the election and are not prosecuted for the slander. This should be a felony for a deliberate act of slander. I have seen many television ads that have no foundation in truth and try to scare the electorate into misinformed voting.
By requiring confirmations from the email address that is involved with an email subscription, you can reduce the amount of unsolicited email caused by unauthorized subscribing of emails address to email distribution lists. The confirmation message should include how to confirm and how to report to federal authorithies unauthorized subscription attempts for further persecution.
Currently, medical providers decline to inform patients of pricing until after service is rendered and then claim the prices are reasonable and customary while granting insurance companies sharp discounts and advanced pricing. This is blantant discrimination and price-gouging against the uninsured.
The United States Government should recognize and insure for its citizens the human rights as outlined in the 1948 United Nation's Declaration of Human Rights. Currently the United States Government violates these rights (in part or in full) as listed in the following Articles: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 16(3), 18, 20(2), 23(4), 25(1), 26(1), 26(2), & 26(3). I am not talking about the rights that liberal organizations want to add to this list but those actually written in the declaration.
All educational recommendations are listed under Education.
With multiple lane streets, designate alternative throughflows as primarly one-directional, align the traffic lights to promote traffic flow, and have more lanes in the preferred direction and one or two in the opposite direction.
Eliminate all toll roads making them free freeways and fund repairs via the local gasoline tax.
Governments should not involved in the funding of sports or sports events. If a government pension plan decides to invest in a sports endeavor for profit, it should be permited.
Grant the right to work without having to belong to a union or pay union dues (if not a member) in all states.
Establish low-security prisons as towns with all prisoner required to work and pay for services in the town.
Prohibit unsolicated calling for sales, charities, and politics, each individually selectable on a statewide basis with heavy fines for violators.
Most justice systems do not handle immature adult delinquents well. One option that should be available is a half-way house where they can live under firm supervision and coaching on civilized behavior while being required to work and pay rent and board to the facility where they are assigned.
Prisons should only provide basic conditions, including housing, inexpensive exercise facilities, and simple food. Luxuries such as better housing, better food, television accesss, computer acesss, health insurance, etc. should be available at a fee that prisoners could pay for.
Allow employees of the government to designate themselves as professionals, be evaulated on an individual basis based on skill and performance, and get pay increases based on individual performance. These employees would opt for a professional contract with the government and not use any union or any other negotiator.
All public buildings, including all government buildings and hospitals, should be required to provide smoke-free access to their buildings, including the area around a smoke-free parking section to a smoke-free door. The United States Government recognizes second-hand tobacco smoke as a health hazard so they and local communities should protect its citizens against its harmful effects.
Many localities post a reduce speed limit in construction zones, but in the non-working hours it is ignored by some individuals creating a dangerous situation with those who obey the limits. Either enforce the reduced speed limits during the off hours or restore the original speed limit in those hours.
Many local construction ordinances discourage or prohibit the use of many of the alternative building materials now available. This can result in buildings that are not as cost or energy efficient. The local laws need to be changed to facilitate (with little delay) the use of alternative building materials provided that a good case for their use can be made.
For transporting students back and forth from school, use the local transport services, bus, train, etc., instead of a dedicated fleet of buses. This would promote a healthier local transport service, providing better coverage, and more flexibility for the students.
Move the security/enforcement personnel from various Government Agencies into the military and contract services back. This should include personnel from Immigration & Naturalization Services (INS), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, & Firearms (ATF), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Department of the Treasury, Secret Service, National Security Agency (NSA), etc. This would permit better training and use of personnel while providing greater capability to the other government agencies.
By permitting the contracting of military services to organizations (corporations and government agencies), a larger more diverse military can be maintained at the smaller overall costs. There are many groups of specialists, such as the Army Corps of Engineers, that can be of service to outside organizations while maintaining and improving their skills by using them practically.
The United States should reorganizes its military forces to create a few forces designed for rapid response on a global scale. These forces may consist of different military services working together, specialists in different terrains, and should be deployable very quickly.
The court systems should be empowered to sentence young adults with discipline problems to military service. This should be an option within the system and may require consent of the convicted but may be given as an alternative to prison time. Currently most judicial systems do not deal with with immature adults and the discipline within the military could transform these individuals to productive members of society.
Certain Laws passed by the United States federal government should permit the states to overrule the law with explicit state laws. This might be used to help rectify the current lack of enforcement of the tenth amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The United States Congress should take advantage of modern computer technology including posting proposed bills with amendments and comments on-line, providing Congressman and their staffs the ability to interact and add to those, and migrating voting to voting in mass at a fixed time of the week on many issues. Watch C-SPAN and you will be shocked at the amount of time wasted with posturing and idle speech.
Members of the United States Congress should have their pay reduced when they fail to fulfill their duties, such as excessive delays in confirming (or rejecting) appointments, delays in approving annual expenditures, etc.
Currently in the United States laws must be broken before their constitutionality is examined. I recommend create a new Federal Court whose sole purpose is to examine the constitutionality of laws without requiring violations prior to the review. This court should be appealable to the United States Supreme Court.
The United States federal government should not be funding the arts directly.
Hiring Quotas based on race, sex, age, national origin, etc. should be eliminated.
The United States federal government should be permitted to require the states to perform certain acts without providing the funding to do them unless specifically permit in the United States Constitution.
The United States federal government has usurped many functions that belong to the states. The states should demand through the U.S. Supreme Court that the Federal Government relinquish those functions back to the states, with a corresponding reduction in the federal spending and a corresponding reduction in taxes. A transition should be planned so that the states can properly manage the functions and their funding.
When Congress fails to fulfill its duties, the President of the United States should be empowered to fulfill these duties on an interim basis, including permanent appointment of judges (when the senate chooses not to have hearings or let the full Senate vote on it within six months of the nomination).
The President of the United States should be able to spend less money than Congress allocates in any department of the government, provided that the constitutional requirements on the federal government are fulfilled.
Limit the size of the federal government to a maximum percentage of the GNP, such as 20%, for the previous year.
The United States Congress is very unefficient partial due to the poor procedures used. Establish modern procedures taking advantage of technology to greatly improve the process.
The United States Congress has many functions that they are required to performed in a timely manner, such as the confirmation of judicial appointments. Currently some members of congress choose the delay the performance of such functions for political purposes. Large fines and jail sentences (served on the weekends) should be established for members of Congress who excess delay functions that should be performed in a timely manner. Likewise, permit the executive branch to perform the duties that Congress neglects until they fulfill their duties. The crime should be considered a form of Treason.
Permit Prisoners to earn incomes for work in prison based on their skills and charge them a part of it to pay for their prison costs.
Provide for most civil cases, the option to have the judge or arbitrator focus on the determination of truth and justice and eliminate most of the legal manuevering and trickery that currently takes place. Lawyers should not be required in most cases, and parties involved should be able to select options with less lawyer involvement.
Simplify United States federal laws, by eliminated most special interest exemptions or provisions. Standardize appeal processes.
The United States Government encourages racism by their people classification schemes. Citizens should be called Americans without regard to racial tags.
Permit citizens to pay a large lump sum payment covering all property tax forever on a given piece of property. The taxing body such invest such payments, and only use most of the revenue generated each year. The property would never have any form of property tax assessed against it ever in the future.
All money spent on tuition for education should be deducted from income before calculating taxes.
Permit a tax credit up to 25% of the federal tax due by an individual for charitable contributions. Charities generally manage funds significantly more efficiently than the government. The current itemized deduction method discriminates against the poor.
Permit significant tax benefits to corporations who provide voachers to help their employees pay for their children's elementary and high school tuitions
Eliminate the Capital Gains Tax totally. I would replace the revenue with a National Sales Tax on Entertainment.
Eliminate the Estate Tax, the tax on the property of the deceased prior to passing it to the heirs.
Require Federal Employee to pay Social Security Taxes like all non-federal employees are required.
Eliminate the State and Local Tax Deducations from the Federal Income Tax formula in a revenue-neutral manner. Currently, the Federal Government is subsidizing inefficiency in local and state governments. - This is unacceptable and contrary to common sense.
Currently the US Tax Laws permit individuals to avoid taxes through the use of trusts. This disriminates against the poor (who can not afford the legal fees associated with them and who end up paying more taxes because the weathly avoiding it).
Currently the US Government taxes some income not yet received by the individual and expects immediate payment. For instance, the Alternative Minimum Tax as it applies to stock options.
The penalty that is applied to married couples in the tax codes should be eliminated.
Monopolies, including those granted by patent and unions, generally lack market competition to keep pricing in line, so a significant excess profits tax calculated on the difference between income and most expenses (some expenses may have limits or may be excluded including political activities) can help keep monopolistic greed in line.
Greatly simplify the federal tax code by eliminating many special-interested benefits in a revenue-neutral manner.
Raise the Minimum amount of Income needed prior to the payment of Federal Income Tax. This would help the poor while reducing the effort to collect and record the tax.
Some monopolies, particular those on a rate-of-return basis, are allowed to make more money by buying significant advertizing. This is unfair to the consumers. By placing a limit on how much advertizing is deductable, the incentive for excessive advertizing is reduced.
Create a simple maximum federal tax that considers the combined effect of Social Security, Medicare, Income, and Self Employment Tax. It should be applied to Federal Adjusted Gross Income and an overall percentage rate of total federal taxation based on number of dependents and income. The poor should be the major beneficiaries of this.
Migrate all Income Taxes to Consumption (Sales) Taxes. The amount of tax may vary by the type of product (food, clothing, housing, furniture/applicances, medicine, services, entertainment, etc.). This would address the problem of international firms selling their American subsiduaries products at artificial high prices so that their American subsiduaries make no profits and pay no United States Corporate Income Tax.
Move from an income-based FCIA & Medicare Tax to a consumption-based tax (Value Added Tax). I would personally exempt food, clothing, medicine, utilities, housing, and rent from this tax.
Allow adult citizens who have low or no income to recieve payments (negative income tax) offset by federal benefits received.
As long as Capital Gains are taxed, capital losses should be fully allowed and considered for tax purposes.
Remove the penalty for withdrawals from retirement accounts taken during periods of extended unemployment.
Permit tax-filers who have negative income after deductions to carry over the net loss to the following year. This would balance some of the unfairness of the tax system when applied to people who lose money some years.
For most people, entertainment expeditures comes out of their excess and by taxing it specially, taxes can be reduced on life's essentials. I would include all purchases of food and goods at casinos with this tax.
Implement a special sax tax with hugh penalties for not pay it on all weapons and ammunition.
Stock Options should be taxable when exercised, not when granted if the grant is at or above market price. This taxation should not be deferable by any means.
Given the monopolies have been granted the right to eminent domain to run utility lines through private property at no cost, these assets should be taxed, particularly where competition is trying to form against the imbedded monopoly.
All non-elective medicine should be tax free including social security tax, medicare tax, self-employment tax, federal tax, state tax, and local tax. Taxes (for the uninsured) can add an additional 100% to the true cost of health care.
Impose a significant tax on all illegal activities and earmark it to help fund law enforcement and the judical system.
Impose a 100% Sales Tax on all illegal substances applicable to retail and non-retail sales. This tax must be collected and payed by the seller and those who do not collect should be fined 100 times the amount of tax that should have been collected.
Remove all limits to domestic political contributions and tax them at a rate of at least 90% with 1/4 of the revenue going for public campaign financing (with a requirement that the candidates state their positions on the issues) and the rest to the general fund. Establish large penalties for failure to pay the tax.
Tax the deliberate taking of a human life, whether from legal or illegal means, at a rate of a least $10,000 per human life.
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© 2001-2004 by Thomas A. Stobie, SFO
Last modified on 28 Mar 2006.