Context

November 22, 2010

The radical right has worked its plan to perfection for the last 30 years. My mind wonders at its logical conclusion. Killing public education through “defunding” removes basic information of democracy and also removes the framework for packaging the myths that underlie the right-wing corporate-funded messaging. What happens when generation after generation is deprived of education and critical thinking skills? Sure, the “Fear the unknown and beware the different!” message will continue to work to divide the populus indefinitely. But, the aspect that “we” are special begins to lose its context. Convincing the majority that they are a victim of the unknown evil becomes harder. Can the “Dog eat Dog” mentality exist in a globally interdependent world? When you have made the case that only “we” have the courage, liberty, independence and values of the Founding Fathers, Defenders of the Alamo and the Wild West Cowboy and when the knowledge starved public has no clue who those historical figures were, then the message loses its impact. Identifying one’s self as exceptional then reverts to base selfishness, a hard sell to the true Christians. For a message to stick it must align with an individual’s cognitive frame of reference. When the great unwashed masses of the future hear Gov. Rick Perry IV proclaim that he represents the principles on which the nation was founded what will they think? What is he talking about? What is a nation-state? Is our only principle the freedom to buy what we have been programmed to buy?

 

Current Landscape

December 1, 2008

I got taste of the misinformation that seems to be swallowing the electorate. A man retired from the Army after serving in Korea and Viet Nam let me know that Barack Obama has now said he is of the “Arab religion”.  The treaty that allows the US to maintain forces in Iraq for three years was not signed by George Bush, but rather by Barack Obama. The return of “the draft” is part of Obama’s plan to make America’s military a force to spread that “Arab religion”. For further evidence of the difficulty of democracy the gentle reader is referred to here to examine the ballots in the Minnesota Senatorial election. The past failure of the public education system to imbue the current generation with the principles upon which this nation was founded and how the mechanisms of an election work will continue to have lasting implications. See Codrescu . As rightwing radio begins its assault on the incoming administration with hoots of “Obama’s Recession” we can expect some turbulent times. Nobody said Change was going to be easy.

 

Now reading Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.

Banishing Science

June 2, 2008

 The economic future of this state and nation depends upon the intellectual development of our young citizens. We must continue to teach science in an appropriate manner to these children. The ‘dumbing down’ of the curriculum puts our state at risk. By removing science from these students it will be more difficult to instill a love of science in later years. What elected representative would even consider such a modification? Is there another agenda at work? Is this the first step in moving from a fact-based society to a faith-based society? Without the critical thinking skills of the scientific methods our future generations will be led by emotion, superstition and prejudice. The Texas legislature, keeping the “Dumb” in dumb-ocracy.