The Corner

Teaching Suze Orman A Lesson Or Two

Columnist Michael Bates, writing in the Canada Free Press, doesn’t think much of Suze Orman, famed commentator on personal financial matters, at least not after her performance at a Senate hearing on proposed increases in financial aid for college students. She seems to have bungled both education policy and economics:

Ms. Orman spoke about young people’s widespread financial irresponsibility. Who will teach them fiscal accountability? she asked. Not their grandparents or parents. And how could “teachers that are all at the poverty level to begin with” possibly do the job?

We’ve heard the assertion that teachers are grossly underpaid so long and so frequently that it’s gained an element of credibility. Now Suze’s dialed the story down to poverty level for all of them.

Two analysts at the Manhattan Institute think tank recently examined data on public school teachers’ salaries compiled by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. They found that in 2005 the average public school teacher earned $34.06 an hour. This is, they noted, 36% more per hour than the average non-sales white-collar worker and 11% more than the average professional specialty and technical worker.

During her testimony, Ms. Orman changed her mind. She abruptly decided that those impoverished educators can handle the action after all. Every high school student would be required to take “some financial exam that they have got to pass before they enter into the world.”

John Hood — John Hood is president of the John William Pope Foundation, a Raleigh-based grantmaker that supports public policy organizations, educational institutions, arts and cultural programs, and humanitarian relief in North Carolina ...

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