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The Role of 'Educators' (Thomas Sowell)
Creators Syndicate ^ | January 8, 2013 | Thomas Sowell

Posted on 01/07/2013 1:12:55 PM PST by jazusamo

Many years ago, as a young man, I read a very interesting book about the rise of the Communists to power in China. In the last chapter, the author tried to explain why and how this had happened.

Among the factors he cited were the country's educators. That struck me as odd, and not very plausible, at the time. But the passing years have made that seem less and less odd, and more and more plausible. Today, I see our own educators playing a similar role in creating a mindset that undermines American society.

Schools were once thought of as places where a society's knowledge and experience were passed on to the younger generation. But, about a hundred years ago, Professor John Dewey of Columbia University came up with a very different conception of education — one that has spread through American schools of education, and even influenced education in countries overseas.

John Dewey saw the role of the teacher, not as a transmitter of a society's culture to the young, but as an agent of change — someone strategically placed, with an opportunity to condition students to want a different kind of society.

A century later, we are seeing schools across America indoctrinating students to believe in all sorts of politically correct notions. The history that is taught in too many of our schools is a history that emphasizes everything that has gone bad, or can be made to look bad, in America — and that gives little, if any, attention to the great achievements of this country.

If you think that is an exaggeration, get a copy of "A People's History of the United States" by Howard Zinn and read it...

(Excerpt) Read more at creators.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: education; politicalcorrectness; sowell; thomassowell

1 posted on 01/07/2013 1:13:04 PM PST by jazusamo
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To: abigail2; Amalie; American Quilter; arthurus; awelliott; Bahbah; bamahead; Battle Axe; ...
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2 posted on 01/07/2013 1:14:49 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: loboinok; LongsforReagan; Lost Dutchman; Loyolas Mattman; Lucius Cornelius Sulla; Ludicrous; ...
Thomas Sowell Ping

3 posted on 01/07/2013 1:16:57 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: loboinok; LongsforReagan; Lost Dutchman; Loyolas Mattman; Lucius Cornelius Sulla; Ludicrous; ...
Thomas Sowell Ping

4 posted on 01/07/2013 1:17:56 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: jazusamo

I picked up my nephew’s history book and I had the immediate impression that ‘facts’ were strictly incidental to the people who wrote the thing.

Apart from the huge gaps, much, much misrepresentation and abjectly one dimensional blather it would be a miracle if the kids learn anyhthing!

No wonder they go to stupid movies and live with their faces in their electronic toys.


5 posted on 01/07/2013 1:27:09 PM PST by SMARTY ("The man who has no inner-life is a slave to his surroundings. "Henri Frederic Amiel)
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To: jazusamo

One of the great minds of our current age.

Sowell’s columns are basic and straight forward — meant to appeal to all readers. For the full strenght Sowell, read some of his outstanding books where the higher level of the anticipated reader is taken into account. If you like his columns, the books will blow you away.

Here is a link to his books:
http://www.tsowell.com/writings.html

I think most readers here would do well to start with The Vision of the Annointed and then go to A Conflict of Visions and the Quest for Cosmic Justice although you can’t come away from any of his books without profiting from his honest wisdom. His autobiography is great as well.


6 posted on 01/07/2013 1:28:50 PM PST by KC Burke (Plain Conservative opinions and common sense correction for thirteen years. RSC)
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To: jazusamo

This includes the biggest rats making it to the top. People more concerned with going after coworkers than educating students. e.g. Michelle Rhee.


7 posted on 01/07/2013 1:29:26 PM PST by Freedom of Speech Wins
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To: jazusamo

This includes the biggest rats making it to the top. People more concerned with going after coworkers than educating students. e.g. Michelle Rhee.


8 posted on 01/07/2013 1:29:59 PM PST by Freedom of Speech Wins
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To: jazusamo

Interesting, and informative as usual. Thanks for the ping jaz.


9 posted on 01/07/2013 1:30:54 PM PST by rockinqsranch (Dems, Libs, Socialists, call 'em what you will, they ALL have fairies livin' in their trees.)
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To: KC Burke

Bump, and thanks for linking his books.


10 posted on 01/07/2013 1:32:59 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: jazusamo

The Framing generation considered education of our young in the principles of republicanism to be of utmost importance.

A major criticism of the Constitution was the absence of a Bill of Rights. Aside from its obvious protections, they viewed a BOR as sort of a text for continuing education in the foundations of our society.

The reason some societies held on to their God given rights like jealous lovers was because they were reminded of them often in schools, newspapers and public proclamations. In Great Britain, Magna Charta was read twice a year in public places, not that it would lose its validity without such confirmations, but to fix the contents of it in the minds of the people.

If neglected, we were sure to descend to the pitiful condition of man in mainland Europe, where they accepted their very existence to be at the whim of despots.

A republic cannot be maintained by a people ignorant of the traditions and ideas essential to their political happiness.

We are very close to accepting the slavish condition endured by most men throughout history.


11 posted on 01/07/2013 1:34:57 PM PST by Jacquerie ("How few were left who had seen the republic!" - Tacitus, The Annals)
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Please bump the Freepathon or click above and donate or become a monthly donor!

12 posted on 01/07/2013 1:35:06 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: jazusamo

I’m sure Dr Sowell is totally correct about this, but what to do about it? How does rational society reclaim the universities and other schools?


13 posted on 01/07/2013 1:44:04 PM PST by pelican001
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To: pelican001

“How does rational society reclaim the universities and other schools?” We don’t. It’s like the whole media battle conservatives have been fighting for decades. Despite the best efforts of many great and talented folks the MSM is farther left than ever. What conservatives do have is a separate media - Drudge, Glen Beck, FR, Breitbart. All the unfiltered news is there if we want it. It is far too late to “reform” public schools or “take back” our universities. We need to accept that we are living in a segmented society. Homeschool your kids. Send them to colleges like Hillsdale, Liberty, BYU, or Thomas Aquinas. Instead of supporting efforts to help your public schools and universities support efforts that will see them wither and be replaced by something better. Let the liberals have the public schools to go along with their housing projects and government cheese.


14 posted on 01/07/2013 2:27:16 PM PST by azcap (Who is John Galt ? www.conservativeshirts.com)
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To: jazusamo
B T T T ! ! ! ©

15 posted on 01/07/2013 2:29:17 PM PST by onyx (FREE REPUBLIC IS HERE TO STAY! DONATE MONTHLY! IF YOU WANT ON SARAH PALIN''S PING LIST, LET ME KNOW)
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To: pelican001

One way is doing what I do, which is to run for and serve on your local school board. Although our options are extremely limited by the legislature, there are still opportunities to review curriculum and and try to advocate for teaching of traditional American history and values, correct language and grammar as well as rigorous math and science.

It is an uphill struggle, but if we don’t fight, we are guaranteed to lose the battle.


16 posted on 01/07/2013 2:34:59 PM PST by con-surf-ative
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To: azcap

Azcap, you are a total cynic. The truth is there are many, many concerned and conservative people whose children attend public schools. Whether you like it or not, graduates of these schools are going to be your senators and representatives, as well as your accountant, plumber, electrician, auto mechanic, grocery clerk, retail manager, nursing home staff . . . and on and on.

I see no choice but to engage the struggle to reclaim education. Students who are actually taught to reason, solve problems, effectively write and speak and otherwise function in society will enjoy an incredible advantage. We will need as many of them as we can get.


17 posted on 01/07/2013 2:44:39 PM PST by con-surf-ative
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To: jazusamo

Excellent post jazusamo. Just watched the video “Agenda” and it is about this very thing.


18 posted on 01/07/2013 3:37:51 PM PST by katiedidit1
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To: con-surf-ative
Students who are actually taught to reason, solve problems, effectively write and speak and otherwise function in society will enjoy an incredible advantage.

Not if conservatives, as has happened in both Media and Academe, are identified and subjected to job discrimination for their dissent from The Program of the Hive Mind.

19 posted on 01/07/2013 4:05:30 PM PST by lentulusgracchus
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To: pelican001
I’m sure Dr Sowell is totally correct about this, but what to do about it? How does rational society reclaim the universities and other schools?
I have a dream. In that dream, “the media” lose their effectiveness as left-wing shills - and they do so because they are brought to book in a RICO civil suit. “The media,” however, is a misnomer; nobody can realistically hold fictional movies and TV to any standard of accuracy or fairness, so it is really all about nonfiction - and not books nearly so much as journalism. Journalism commits a consistent pattern of lies by commission and especially by omission against anyone who is unfortunate enough to become a convenient target.

George Zimmerman is suing NBC, but he would do better to sue all of journalism, by suing the Associated Press and the membership of the AP. Because the AP and its membership is national journalism in America. And if you ignore the AP and try to go after individual members of the AP, you will flounder on the shoal of each individual member appealing to the work of other AP members as justification/legitimate source relied upon in their own hatchet job.

Journalism should be a legitimate target because
  1. it claims to be factual, and it isn’t always,

  2. Journalism claims to be objective, and it never is, and

  3. journalism is a monopoly because all major outlets are joined at the hip by the AP newswire.
My dream is that journalism is successfully sued for so much money that it is crippled as a propaganda operation. Wihtout the “air support” of journalism, political correctness would lose the commanding heights it has enjoyed since the memory of living man runneth not to the contrary. Without that advantage, political correctness would fall of its own weight.

20 posted on 01/07/2013 5:04:43 PM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which “liberalism" coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

Excellent post!

Without the support of the enemedia ‘political correctness’ would be a thing of the past.


21 posted on 01/07/2013 6:30:06 PM PST by jazusamo ("Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent." -- Adam Smith)
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To: KC Burke

Great post and completely agree with starting with The Vision of the Anointed. I first read it about 5 years ago and was just completely overwhelmed with how well Sowell saw what was happening.


22 posted on 01/07/2013 8:14:23 PM PST by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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To: pelican001
How does rational society reclaim the universities and other schools?

School choice. Let parents choose their schools, just as they choose their colleges.

Better yet, homeschool. It's much easier than parents think.

Best decision our family ever made. How much are godly children worth?

23 posted on 01/07/2013 8:23:02 PM PST by St_Thomas_Aquinas
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To: con-surf-ative
One way is doing what I do, which is to run for and serve on your local school board. Although our options are extremely limited by the legislature, there are still opportunities to review curriculum and and try to advocate for teaching of traditional American history and values, correct language and grammar as well as rigorous math and science.

It is an uphill struggle, but if we don’t fight, we are guaranteed to lose the battle.

I served on a Texas textbook review for high school physics books once. We were provided with this very long checklist that looks like a committee sat down and thought of everything they could write down about physics. Then, the textbooks arrived from some 20 different publishers. With all of the related material, teacher's books, workbooks, etc., I filled an unfurnished spare bedroom wall-to-wall with physics texts.

I was the only non-teacher on the committee. I was four years out of college, had a job as an engineer and was going to grad school at night, which limited the amount of time I could spend on the committee. I gave up on the checklist, which I thought was missing the bigger picture about which texts best prepared the students for college physics.

I went through every student text book with an eye towards answering two questions:

1. How well did it explain the concepts?

2. How well did it prepare the students for college?

I came up with my ranked order list, explained how I arrived at the list, and sent it in. When I was sent the committee's official recommendations, I was stunned. It was nearly identical to my list, but in reverse order. The best books were at the bottom. The worst were at the top.

Perplexed, I went back through the books the committee selected at the top and the ones I selected. Then, I figured it out. The committee's recommendations were based on how easy the books were for the teachers. Their preferred text didn't have a single physics problem. You didn't even need to know basic algebra to teach the text.

This wasn't history. This was physics. There were no politics in it (at least then, before Algore discovered global warming). There was a bunch of lazy teachers.

I spent a lot of time coming up with my recommendations. I felt like they were totally ignored and that I was only on the committee so they could claim input from a real world practitioner. It was a complete waste of time, though surprisingly I did fetch several hundred dollars when I sold the room full of physics books and related material.

I concluded that the schools can't be saved until we change how we hire teachers and that they don't want and will resist involvement by anyone that makes their lives the slightest bit more strenuous. Getting involved is like wrestling pigs. All you do is irritate the pigs and feel dirty afterwards.

24 posted on 01/08/2013 6:51:15 AM PST by Entrepreneur (In hoc signo vinces)
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