Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

19 May 2010

Head Start -- Ineffective and Fraudulent

Early studies had found that the Head Start Program, started 45 years ago as part of the "War on Poverty," was effective in helping the children of the poor improve their performance in school.  However, in January a study revealed that the advantage of Head Start for these children had evaporated by the end of the First Grade.  That study was massive and examined a 10-year period of performance on 112 measuring meters.  This ineffective program under Health and Human Services usually has been funded at about $7 billion a year, but Obama had it given an extra $2 billion last year as part of the Stimulus Bill and wants it to have an extra $1 billion this year.  In this time of severe national indebtedness, the ineffectiveness of this program should result in its elimination, but the ever-wrongheaded Democrats are giving it extra money instead.  This is the equivalent of hiring thugs to run around and break people's windows on the theory that they will stimulate the economy by replacing the windows.  The reason is because taxpayer money is removed from productive uses and diverted into an ineffective government program.

A report in today's Washington Times tells the story of an investigation into fraud in the Head Start Program.  Fifteen program locations were visited and child enrollment fraud was found at 8 sites.  Investigating agents posed as parents wanting to enroll their children.  The results:
  • In Wisconsin, a "grandpa" and "grandmother" presented their paystubs for proof of income and the school enroller decided to record only the "grandmother's" paystub, because it indicated the smaller income of the two.
  • Children were accepted for enrollment with parents making more than $110,000 per year.
  • 63 children were counted multiple times to make centers appear to be fully enrolled.
  • Proof of employment was ignored.
  • Extraordinarily high numbers of "homeless" children were found.  Homeless children are automatically eligible for enrollment.
This program is ineffective and it is run fraudulently as well.  This is a great program to cut.  Of course, doing so would expose any politician to cries that he was hurting the children.  With some guts, the politician can point to the fact that you cannot hurt a child by removing a program that is not helping the child.  This program is merely a pretense at helping children and is a Potemkin village built at great expense only for the benefit of those who run the centers.  We now know that many of those who run the centers are crooks.  So, more than half the real adult beneficiaries of our $7 to 9 billion a year of taxpayer money are crooks.

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