In my country once corporal punishment was removed from school then suspensions and expulsions increased incredibly because schools felt they did not have enough consequences to discipline the children. My state suspends 60,000 children from school every year and expels many as well. Instead of disrupting their education lets just discipline them.
I was punished so by my parents well into my teens for things like lying and bad grades, because that was considered totally inappropriate. Many of my friends were also punished corporally, with paddle for serious offences. And though this was rather long time ago, I wonder whether such method of child and teen discipline is still relevant today.
This isn't a practice that should still be used by anyone, children should be verbally reprimanded. Hitting them just teaches them that hitting is a solution to problems, it's far more sensible to explain what the issue is in whatever terms are appropriate for the age of the child and make it a teachable moment.
I'm all for discipline, but school is very different now than it was then. My grandmother was telling me how all of this bullying did NOT go on when she was in grade school. I think spanking children would increase embarrassment and bullying. Also, kids with mental/anger issues could get mad enough to start hitting the teacher with it! Maybe school would be better had spanking stayed in school? I don't know, I do believe it would just cause too much up roar and problems now though.
Spanking, or any form of physical violence including the use of implements (such as paddles and belts) is abuse. Period. Any parent who has to resort to using violence as a means of discipline or to get their child to do or not do something, is a failed parent. You wouldn't hit your wife if she touched a hotplate, nor would you smack her with a paddle (sexploits aside here) to reprimand her either. So why is it acceptable to abuse children? Answer is, it isn't.
Yes paddling them would be effective because they would associate the disobedience with pain, but they would also associate the person who is punishing them with pain. They would grow to hate the pain and the person causing it. Eventually when they are too big for you to properly punish them they will want to fight back either for their younger siblings or for revenge.
Every time a child is spanked, he/she feels violated. They know they are property. They know that this world teaches subservience.
Adult superiority is the root of all discrimination. As soon as a child is taught that parents are above children, they are set up to believe that we shouldn't treat all equally. Racism, sexism, gay bias, etc., are all derived from adult superiority, except the subjects have been changed.
When you see a child obey after a paddling, you are really seeing a child in fear of the world.
In the world that parents are to prepare their children for, they will not be spanked with a paddle for disobeying the law. They will be made to do community service or spend time in prison. Being violent against a child just gives them a wrong view of what retribution is like and what it should look like.
There is evidence both for and against it, with the evidence for being much more loosely tied than the evidence against. It can cause outbursts, resentment, and violent behavior in children while only solving the issue at hand temporarily.
All that being said, the evidence seems to be pointing much more to the general way one raises their child, with spanking being a mere (either important or not) factor.