Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Abbott/Dead Armadillos: An Ongoing Series (Part 5 - School Reopenings)

"So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth."
Revelation 3:16

Greg Abbott's education commissioner, last Friday:
"[A] blanket order closing schools does not constitute a legally issued closure order for purposes of funding solely remote instruction for an indefinite period of time."
Greg Abbott today:
[S]chools “have until November” to open up for in-person education, Abbott said.
For all of the convoluted lawyer talk, in plain English Abbott did something between flip flopping and caving.

Honestly, at this point, it's not even about Abbott's policy (does he really have one?!?). It's about the fact that he doesn't stick with anything longer than three days. It's indecisive and weak.

We will confess to mixed feelings on this particular topic. Thus, we could potentially be convinced that either end of this spectrum is correct. But we can't endorse this lukewarm muddle.

As we wrote in April:
Abbott's already pissed off the stay-home-forever crowd. Now, he's pissing of a not-insignificant part of his base. He's creating a rather difficult needle to thread for himself.
Subsitute the current reopening schools discussion for April's discussion of lockdowns, and the same dynamic remains at play.

Bottom Line: Half measures mean that you get all of the political pain with none of the public policy benefit.  That's why you should generally avoid them.  Yet here we are.

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