This week was the first of which where I have read an essay written by Frederic Bastiat, A French economist. “That Which Is Seen, and That Which Is Not Seen” is his most famous and recognized part of this much larger essay. The basic premise of the book is that people only see what is most obvious and don’t stop to think of the much greater consequences. This brings us to the question presented to me this week. A proposition is made that ‘online education isn’t good for society since teachers in classrooms would be out of a job’. What do I have to say about this? Easy. This statement is made by someone without all the facts.
So, having read Bastiat’s essay, I can say that there is much more not being taken into account. Teachers not having work is the only thing seen. What they’re not focusing on is the fact that classroom teachers won’t be working. Well, to be a classroom teacher, you need a school, and schools require taxes for funding to keep them going. If there are no teachers, then no schools are funded, so less tax would be imposed, which means the whole country would have more money to spend on things they want. Not only this, but some teachers are needed to teach in these online curriculums, so not all teachers go jobless.
So, as Bastiat would have said, the things seen, in this case, is that teachers don’t work in school. The ‘unseen’ things are less tax and some teachers working on the online courses. It’s the simple little details that people don’t think of that make all the difference in the way you consider these kinds of propositions.