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After wanting an iPad for every U.S. schoolchild, Jackson now says the iPad is killing jobs for Americans

Just last month, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) created a proposal that would provide an iPad for every student across the United States in an effort to guarantee all Americans the equal right to an education. Now, Jackson is quickly turning against the iPad, saying it is killing jobs. 

In the beginning of March, Jackson proposed the idea to amend the Constitution so that every American has a chance to obtain an equal education, and under this amendment, he suggested that the federal government provides an iPad, Kindle, or Nook for every child in school in the U.S.

Jackson even praised the iPad and devices like it on the House floor. He noted that the iPad and other similar gadgets are "products of the First Amendment," and that they maintain the rights of the First Amendment. 

"Let me be clear about a few things," said Jackson. "These devices are revolutionizing our country - and they will fundamentally alter how we will educate our children. Yes, there will be a cost, but if we can find the money for the wars, if we can find the money to bail out Wall Street, certainly we can find the money to educate our kids at an equally high-quality level."

Now, only one month later, Jackson is changing his tune entirely. On the House floor this past Friday afternoon, Jackson threw the iPad under the bus and opted for a more negative viewpoint on the device's influence. 

"A few short weeks ago, I came to the House floor after having purchased an iPad and said that I happened to believe, Mr. Speaker, that at some point in time this new device, which is now probably responsible for eliminating thousands of American jobs," said Jackson. "Now Borders is closing stores because, why do you need to go to Borders anymore? Why do you need to go to Barnes & Noble? Buy an iPad and download your newspaper, download your book, download your magazine." 

Jackson went on to express concern for publishers, libraries and paper companies that are being affected by the iPad. According to Jackson, Chicago State University is introducing iPads to freshmen in an effort to achieve a "textbookless" campus in a four-year period, which will also hurt publishing industries. 

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By epobirs on 4/19/2011 3:06:03 AM , Rating: 2
This person is a perfect example of the poor thinking embraced by the left. First, we have a new technology trend driven by private enterprise and free markets. Many companies took a shot at the tablet and e-reader formats before any scored a hit. Then competition drove a steady pace of improvement and lower prices.

Given a few years without government meddling, these will become widely available to increasingly lower economic strata. If individual school districts or even states want to make this tool universally available to its students, that is alright. Such decisions and initiatives belong at the local level where there is more direct participation in the decision making process.

Doing it as a federal mandate is idiocy and a gross abuse of this nation's intended structure.

Personally, I'd be dead set against this being done on any level with tax payer funds. Once the technology achieves a sufficiently low cost of entry, it is reasonable to request that those parents who are able provide it for their children and encourage charities to fill the gap for those who are too impoverished to consider such toys. Because that is what they are, toys. Nothing of this sort has ever made any dramatic improvement on education. We spent the last several decades filling our schools with computers but the average high school graduates is substantially less competent to make his way in the world than a graduate of the era when the IBM PC was first introduced.

My state was once considered a national leader in educational standards but now has a dropout rate approaching 50%. This would once have been viewed as a sign of the imminent apocalypse but nowadays we just shrug and go on with our lives.

We've thrown money and toys at the problems for decades but they've only gotten worse. Perhaps it's time to admit that the problems aren't rooted in funding or technology.

"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il

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