Sunday, August 28, 2016
Takata, my Subaru Outback, and Education "Deform."
This week I have to take my 2001 Subaru Outback into the dealer to have one of the airbag inflators replaced as part of a huge recall of millions of cars in the U.S. from multiple manufacturers. It appears that more than 100 million dangerous air bag inflators from the Japanese company Takata were installed in cars in the U.S. At least 14 people have been killed and more than a hundred have been injured in an effort by Takata and several auto makers 20 years or so ago to save a little money on each inflator. According to a story in today's NY Times, it was not a case of Takata marketing a faulty and dangerous product to unsuspecting auto companies, but one of the auto companies actively encouraging Takata to put cost before all else. Once again the unregulated market corrupts morals and profit becomes more important than everything else. Here is the link to the story in the NY Times. It has information on how to check if your particular car is affected by this problem. The one positive thing in the story is the Swedish company Autoliv that had been supplying GM with the inflators refused to make the changes requested to make their inflators like the ones from Takata when asked to do so by GM. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/27/business/takata-airbag-recall-crisis.html?ref=business&_r=0
The same thinking that was involved in the decision to go with cheaper airbag inflators in order to maximize profit is guiding much of the so-called "education deform movement." Here are the links to a piece by NPR reporter Anya Kamentz on the charter school chain "Rocketship" that uses computers to enable them to hire fewer teachers and to another piece on Rocketship by Barbara Miner in Milwaukee. Rocketship is one of several charter chains that use cheaper TFA and other teach for awhile teachers to increase their "cost effectiveness."
Posted by ken at 2:37 PM