September 30, 2008 4:59PM

No Bailout Will Silence This!

Other than partying pirates holding thirty‐​some Russian tanks captive against an international armada of warships, the Big Abortive Bailout of Aught‐​Eight seems to have pushed every other news story out of the headlines. That’s almost certainly the case for education, where few stories are attracting much attention, and the edublogosphere has been eerily quiet.

Unfortunately for both the country and education‐​policy peeps, there’s a good chance our economic problems, and political efforts to make them worse, will continue to dominate our news for the foreseeable future. Thankfully, we here at Cato will be giving education a chance to get back on your mind, even if for just a few hours, bringing in a man whose ability to rile is not bound by anything as inconsequential as mere news! He is Charles Murray, and his new book, Real Education: Four Simple Truths for Bringing America’s Schools Back to Reality, has been getting lots of people’s goats and just not letting go.

On Wednesday, October 8, Murray will be at Cato defending his book’s thesis that we all have different intellectual endowments, and only a relative few of us are well‐​served by a school system that shoves everyone into ivy‐​covered walls. Responding will be Christopher B. Nelson, president of St. John’s College in Annapolis, MD, a school that features about as pure a liberal arts education—the kind of schooling Murray argues must of us don’t need—as you’ll find.

Bailouts, frankly, get pretty boring after awhile; Paulson this, $700 billion of your hard‐​earned tax dollars that, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. But one thing that never gets dull is debating how best to educate our children. So register to hear Charles Murray today, and get ready to cogitate over something other than our economic mess—well, at least the immediate mess—come October 8.