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October 29, 2012

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Tung Yin

Interesting post -- however, how much of the analysis depends on the assumption that the wealthy parents who move to poorer school districts care enough about the actual education their kids are getting, as opposed to the relative advantage that their kids will have over their new peers in terms of class rank and the like? That is, if their kids are getting A+ grades and having an easy road to UT-Austin, will they care about the quality of the education?

Matthew Reid Krell

Mr. Tung: a legitimate criticism, and I don't know that the evidence supports a finding one way or the other. But there's also a problematic assumption in your criticism; namely, that we see high school as nothing more than a pre-college babysitting service in this country. There may be people who think that way, but my instinct (which is worth exactly what you're paying for it) says that students who are performing well in school are likely to have parents who expect education to educate.

David Orentlicher

Good question, and good response. I would only add that parents need to worry about their children's opportunities for advanced degrees. If students are not well prepared for their college years, they will not do well enough to be accepted to strong graduate or professional schools.

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Trende is an honest man, but no one's really focused on the huge difference between 2012 and 2008: smartphones are now mainstream, even for indigent Americans. The smartphone is now the communication, computing and entertainment tool of choice for not just educated, high-information voters but also a majority of low-turnout, low-information voters.

Two implications of the shift to a smartphone-dependent nation - one's been cited by some, but not paid nearly enough attention by most, and the other's been almost entirely ignored:

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