A few thoughts:
- Regarding America's trailing scores in math and science, Obama said "This probably has more to do with our national future than anything." Yes - Obama gets it. Education is infrastructure.
- Again with the "$3 million overhead projector" thing from McCain. The Sky Theater planetarium projector is an "overhead projector" like Google or Amazon is "someone's web site". Technically true, but intentionally disguising the nature of what is being discussed by leaving out the important detail of how much amazing technology is behind it. The Sky Theater projector is not what people think of when you say the words "overhead projector," and McCain knows it. It's dishonest.
- McCain predictably excuses his lifetime position of giving education the short shrift by saying "throwing money at the problem won't solve it." Again, technically true - we can't just throw money at our educational system to fix it.
We need to hire and retain better teachers, find better ways to teach, provide safer and more conducive learning environments, lower the student:teacher ratios, update outdated modes of teaching that don't connect with today's kids, provide after school programs for at-risk kids, fix our crumbling schoolhouses, etc.
And you know what, McCain? Those things cost money.
Yes, you can't just throw money at the system to solve everything - it needs true educational leadership and responsible stewardship for that money to do what it needs to do. But they do need money.
- Besides, McCain sure is one to talk about "throwing money at a problem." This is the guy who would be fine with spending $2,400,000,000 per week in Iraq for 100 years. This is the guy who "suspended his campaign" to go throw $820,000,000,000 at the international banking system. Doesn't he see the irony? At least when we talk about funding teachers, science programs, and... ahem... high-end planetarium star projectors, we know exactly what it is we're going to be spending the money on, that we're spending it here at home, and what we can expect as an outcome.