When Hurricane Katrina swept into New Orleans in late August 2005, it destroyed much of the city’s infrastructure, including many of its public schools. Soon after, a network of conservative think tanks led by Milton Friedman, the founder of modern neo-liberal economics, pushed the Bush administration to impose a charter system in New Orleans. Charter schools-publicly funded schools run by private entities-are a politically polarizing issue in the United States, and Friedman saw in the still-reeling city a window.
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Lanny Ebenstein, former school board member, failed mayoral candidate, and current UCSB lecturer, has a new book with which to burnish his reputation as Santa Barbara’s most prominent Libertarian.