Category: Death by Education

Echoes: The Grassroots vs. The Prairie Fire

Fascist demagoguery proclaiming itself the only bulwark against communism. Communist thuggery declaring itself the only bulwark against fascist demagoguery. America 2021. Germany 1930. Everyone who warned of these echoes for decades — and was mocked out of both polite society and the ivory tower for so warning — appears to have been fully vindicated. The question is, why would any American have expected...

Drugs and the Ruling Class

The sense of urgency governments are exuding today over the universal push to vaccinate everyone against COVID-19 is palpable — as is the reason for the sense of urgency. If the world were allowed to emerge from the pandemic without universal vaccination having been achieved first, the people who advised restraint, moderation, and the necessity of reaching herd immunity from the outset would...

And Then You Woke Up

I just read the following headline from the Associated Press: “Fauci says pandemic exposed ‘undeniable effects of racism.’” And Dr. Fauci’s self-serving deference to the latest trends in neo-Marxist race politics is worth discussing because…? A couple of days back, I read of an adjunct instructor in literature at St. John’s University in New York who uttered “the n-word” during an online lecture...

The Easiest Answer in the World (Which Almost Everyone Avoids)

President Joe Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki, asked during an official White House propaganda session to address Senator Tom Cotton’s concerns about U.S. colleges being used to “indoctrinate” students, replied smugly — I did not hear her voice, but how else can a progressive sound when defending totalitarianism? — with the following: “Well, without much detail on where he thinks our youth are...

“…after the end of painting”

Some readers familiar with my background and professional biography might wonder how I ended up in this unorthodox, fringe-dwelling sort of university teaching career in South Korea, rather than having pursued the more traditional and “prestigious” academic path typically prized by those who spend their early adulthoods on the educational path I followed. Here, in a nutshell — and I choose that idiom...

“Left-wing Indoctrination”

Washington Post headline at the moment of this writing: “Trump alleges ‘left-wing indoctrination’ in schools.” My first reaction: “Gee, what a revelation.” My second: “Does the Washington Post really expect its readers to find Trump’s claim wild and outrageous?”  My third: “Yes they do, and their expectation will prove true. The indoctrinated rarely know they are indoctrinated — and what is more, they...

Education Reform Now! (Or Not)

This morning, I received an e-mail from a regular reader noting that this might be a boom time for my Case Against Public Education, given that there is a lot of “chatter” these days about “the dangers of public education.”  My immediate reply: The “dangers of public education” chatter is just that — chatter. Nothing will happen, no one will change. Everyone is...

American Coast Falls Away

A news article (aka propaganda screed) from Associated Press reports (i.e., carefully frames so as to avoid the real heart of the story) that California’s public school superintendent, Tony Thurmond, has praised and endorsed a decision by the Berkeley Unified School District to rename schools named for “Confederate leaders or other racially charged figures” whose names on the schools “exacerbate feelings of racial...

Soft Despotism vs. The Cosmos

Last evening, I ate dinner with a student at a department store food court. At one point in the conversation, while talking about the kind of attitudes and responses that pass for “normal” today, I suddenly had an odd thought. Looking around the large, moderately crowded but “socially-distanced” court, I mused aloud, “If someone from the government walked in here right now and...

On Our Modern Saints

Few things frustrate me more than attempts to leap over common sense and honest appraisal with the shorthand of collective beatification for certain classes or groups within society. For progressives, the sainthood-bound groups include teachers and “activists.” For conservatives, the saintly groups are “cops” and “our brave men in uniform.” Both sides, meanwhile, will always race to outdo each other in fawning gratitude...