Posted by: quiscus | November 10, 2010

November 10, 2010

1.  “Capitalism and the War on Public Education

My own experience indicates that the average college student is more concerned with grades than with learning. Therefore grades are more of an impediment to learning than they are an accurate measure of it. Scoring well on tests is not an indication of comprehension of complex ideas or the thought processes behind them. Nevertheless, test scores are the Holy Grail of the school reform movement that is sweeping the country as part of a political agenda to privatize the public domain and put it under absolute corporate control.

Right-wing politicians of the Republican and Democratic parties are wrecking what remains of the public education system. They have been doing so for decades. Some of them are castigating it as socialist. Under the guise of reform, a movement is afoot to under fund public schools and replace them with ‘for profit’ charter schools. Firing qualified teachers and busting teachers unions is part of the process. College and University education is being priced out of the reach of working class people. We are witnessing the death of the liberal arts. The war on public education is a front in the broader class war that pits workers against owners and the working class against the wealthy.

There is a widespread notion among neoconservatives, neoliberals, and civil libertarians that government is the enemy of the people. Many people believe that government is incapable of serving the public, that it is incapable of doing good. I am not one of those people. After all, government grudgingly provided social security, the minimum wage, Medicare and Medicaid, and it restrained corporate power. This came as a response to social unrest engendered by social agitators, but it was not enough. Government that serves the needs of the people rather than corporate interests is good government.

The problem isn’t big government; it is the merging of corporations and big business with government and the philosophical system that engenders it: the market fundamentalism spawned by rapacious capitalism. When corporations, which are motivated by profit rather than regard for the public welfare, merge with government, people are removed from the equation and they are replaced by capital. Thus money is equated with free speech and corporations are given the rights of human beings without the social and moral responsibility of citizenship. This is what capitalism does. Free markets are not an expression of democracy; they are a manifestation of corporate fascism and belligerence.

It protects them from the wealthy sociopaths who operate in secrecy behind corporate masks. The extremists cringe behind the camouflage of the corporation like the public servants that once donned white hoods and burned crosses in the night in order to terrorize black folk and to keep them in their place.

These were the people: racists, sexists, homophobes, and white supremacists one and all, who were employed as newspaper editors, court clerks, school teachers, corporate executives, and sheriffs by day. Many of them were church deacons and some were ministers. But no façade of respectability can conceal their black hearts or the venomous hatred they harbor for coal miners, cleaning ladies, environmental sanitarians, taxi drivers, liberal arts professors, and the department store employees they so coldly regard as chattel. ”


JOHN STOCKWELL, former CIA official and author, “It is the function of the CIA to keep the world unstable, and to propagandize and teach the American people to hate, so we will let the Establishment spend any amount of money on arms.


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