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Thu

04

Sep

2008

Educational Darwinism Is Here
Thursday, 04 September 2008 15:57
by Tom Chartier 

Don’t you just hate the weak and feeble holding back the herd? I know I do. But the wolves are being shot off in Wyoming. At least the ones in Washington are still safe. So we’re stuck with bad genes proliferating. Just look at the members of Congress.  

Well, we can’t have a society of defectives now can we? Fortunately, times have changed and whether by “intelligent design” or pure chance a new form of Darwinism has emerged. The tired old Social Darwinism of the past has evolved into Educational Darwinism

Actually, Educational Darwinism is nothing new. It has just been kicked up a notch. 

Now those of us who went to school… and I presume that includes most of us… just might remember the idea that everybody was supposed to learn. Teachers tried to reach out to as many of their students as possible. The more fires ignited the better. We really don’t want a society of nincompoops do we?  

Or do we?

A well-educated society just might… and I shudder at the thought… be hard to fool. Can you imagine the pure chaos of a couple million knowledgeable individuals exercising their right to vote… and doing it intelligently? The horror. The horror. Considering the fact that nobody qualified actually seeks elected office (with a few exceptions), we’d have ourselves a real ruckus. Things might get out of hand even worse than at the RNC convention

That’s where the modern miracle of Educational Darwinism comes into play. Yes! With E.D. society can be properly structured into 5% elites and 95% worthless peons, just like Tsarist Russia! I know what group I’m in. I’m with the majority. How about you? 

Time-honored methods of teaching have gradually been replaced with bells and whistles. Educational programs are looking more and more like Las Vegas extravaganzas complete with sequined pasties. Why? Well… glitz and glitter sells. Duh. 

Consider the COW, Little Shrub Neil Bush’s edu-scam, Curriculum On Wheels. Just roll a video projector into the classroom and blast cartoons at the kids. Hey, kids love cartoons! And cartoons are even better within the sanctity of the classroom. They burn time. Unfortunately, in this Bush get rich quick scheme the COW has not taken a dump. At least the teachers won’t have to clean up the mess. But the parents will. 

Another grand scheme in turning our future into a clan of Neanderthals is my favorite math program, Everyday Mathematics. I was never religious before my son was inflicted with EM but now I know The Truth. Satan is real… and he develops math programs.  

EM is brilliant for separating the will haves from the will not haves. You see EM teaches… make that exposes, our tykes to a spiraling ball of confusion. Never does EM stay with one concept long enough for it to be locked down in the minds of the students. Ok, we did angles in this section… on to algebra or fractions or some ancient Egyptian form of division next. Addition, subtraction, multiplication? Huh? You mean the basics? Forget those… oh… I see Junior already has. Excellent! He gets a C. That’ll keep him working in Burger World or Home Dumpster Hellhouse forever… like most future American workers. 

As the world is full of absurdities, Everyday Mathematics is right up there with COW. For the first five years of alternative concepts our children are forbidden to use a calculator. Good! I agree as long as they are taught the things a calculator does, like add, subtract, multiply and divide. However, too good to be true, in year six of EM they are issued… a calculator! What the (vernacular sent to the principal’s office)? Are the geniuses behind EM actually admitting that… EM does not work?  

I don’t suppose the Chicago University Mathematics Project that cooked up EM would ever admit they were wrong. However, since by the sixth grade, EM students are expected to be unable to figure out the cost of an iPod, best to move on to differential equations so none of the parents will catch on. Hence the distribution of the Texas Instruments’ kiddy calculator. You don’t suppose Texas Instruments and the creators of EM are in cahoots? 

Now at 13 years old, my son has been required by his school to purchase a “graphing calculator.” A Texas Instrument (what else?) TI 83 or 84 is recommended, or even better a TI 89. What in the Sam Hill is that you ask? I don’t know. I bought the damned thing. It only cost me twice as much as my Dive Master Special Jeep… But, I’m not bitter.  

It looks to me like the TI 89 can accurately calculate the trajectory of a 125 million dollar Mars Probe vanishing into space. Holy Buzz Lightyear! I could have done that with a piece of paper and a pencil! Maybe the JPL whiz-bangs were addicted to calculators. You would expect that in a sane world, one of them might have noticed the numbers were goofy. Anyway, I hope and pray The Boy puts this new fangled gizmo to good use so he can enter that elite 5% and afford a decent rest home for me to die in. 

In a way, EM is like the friendly neighborhood crack dealer. The first one was free and then they took it away! Awe gee… you’re addicted now? Here, let me help. I’m your friend. Since you are a regular I’ll cut you some slack, this time. But, no discount on the next calculator. 

What is going on with our educational system? Like so much in America, unscrupulous people are seeing education as an opportunity to suck the blood out of the turnips. And that is all they care about. God forbid students should grow up understanding what a $3 trillion dollar war might mean. 

Most teachers still have their hearts in the right place. They try their best but struggle against insipid programs purchased by gullible and inept administrators under pressure from spoiled and aggressive parents, usually in the wannabe elite stratosphere and sold by snake oil salesmen.  

Equal education for all is passé. Now is the time for education to weed out those who will rule from those who will toil in the munitions factories. It is another element in the destruction of the middle class. And it fits in well with Bush’s diabolical No Child Left Behind program. Get a head start with Educational Darwinism

Two legs good! Four legs better! 
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Project Humanbeingsfirst.org said:

0
Emphasizing the Solution Space!



From: Project Humanbeingsfirst.org
Date: Thu, Sep 4, 2008 at 9:20 AM
Subject: Re: Educational Darwinism Is Here
To: tccayman@yahoo.com

[Clarifications added - an earlier version was emailed to its author.]

Thank you for those reflections. It is interesting to me that what has
been sold to developing and third world nations through deftly planted
"native informants" and various and sundry "uncle toms" in all
important decision making positions is now also being peddled to the
'lower echelon' of the 'white man'! Seems like the burden of the
'elite' is all encompassing and transcends beyond racial-cultural
lines - as we see in the dumbing down of America. The trend [however] is still segregated in the public school system along poor vs. affluent
neighbourhood school districts. Your description [matches] to the T with
respect to most school districts in America - and this is very sad
indeed. However, as my friends from developing nations will attest, it
is still far better education than what most are capable of purchasing
in their native lands, and will gladly put their children in [most any] public
schools when they immigrate. The solution obviously is not necessarily
[to] seek private schools which not all can afford, and the public school
system concept of America can really be a great benefit to its
peoples; as an effective public-service delivery system for education,
it can both really educate, and really indoctrinate/dumb-down. How can
the public force it to become the former? Seems like it is a constant
struggle, as between any "good and evil" since time immemorial, and
therefore, recognizing this as such - a perennial challenge for each
new generation of parents - a solution-space is what must be
emphasised.

Perhaps you can comment on the solution-space in your next sequel in
this series of reflections. I also can relate to your "Is Your Child a math moron" and other essays.

You may see my solution-space for reforming Pakistan's education system in
http://iratepakistani.blogspot.com/2007/03/seeding-genuine-education-system.html
, and you may note that it unfortunately presumes good peoples in
controlling positions making informed decisions assuming their own
children are to be educated in the same systems they [will] administer. This is the problem besieging developing nations - a lack of such peoples - and a lack of ability to inculcate love of learning in their youth.

I am not sure what the prime-mover issues are in America - for this
nation does indeed have the essential building blocks in its education delivery
mechanisms k-12 that can easily foster the love of learning. The developing nations lamentably lack such capital intensive infrastructures. Using the analogy of hw-sw, America has most of the hw, and it used to be in pretty good condition before the 'war on terror' financing drained all the funding into killing other peoples using the nation's own slaves of economic conscription; all it really needs is good well designed sw to run on this hw. Whereas developing nations have neither, and what is worse, lacks the peoples who might construct them, and well trained peoples who might administer the sw! They do seem to have the funds, mostly IMF/WB loaned monies which are deliberiately squandered by a co-opted feudalistic ruling elite which absolutely controls everything. Whereas in America, I do see many informed peoples, and I also see many good peoples, and quite a few of them in powerful lower tier positions of decision
making, especially in school districts; and yet, I don't see them
being effective in their ability the stop the dumbing down of their
kids in the schools (leaving aside the media for the moment)!! I also don't see the teachers, most of them well trained, and quite dedicated, in arresting this decay - seems like the teachers have the least powers in their ability to innovate and modulate what they might teach in public schools!! The curriculum-books-schedule are rigidly prescribed by the school districts. The leveraging point appears to be centered around who controls and manages the school districts!!

Thus, is it purely a Federal funding and/or Federal programs issue? School
districts, I am told, are largely funded by State and local taxes, and
mainly property taxes. Therefore, the ruling 'elite' who might
conspire to dumb down the nation's populace as per your observations
aren't necessarily a monolithically conspiring block - there are many
interference points for good peoples to intervene to not let the
system be subverted, at least in principle.

So there is still much to be analyzed in how to checkmate the K-12 public education system decay
with astute local and state level moves by concerned peoples, especially at the school district administration level. I am told that some leadership positions are elected, and there is considerable parent participation possible. The same genuine patriotism that fuels America's "united we stand" under indoctrination, can also be harvested for making America better? I would hesitate to conclude that the problems are the same as in developing nations.

Regards
Zahir Ebrahim
Project Humanbeingsfirst.org

 
September 04, 2008
Votes: +0

John Czarnecki said:

0
Wizard
Tell you what, my elementary school nuns would never have bought this stuff.
Any type of Darwinism was out.
P.S. I can still add, subtract, multiply and divide without using my fingers or a calculator. Plus fractions and decimals. Hooray for a Catholic education in the 40's.
 
September 04, 2008
Votes: +0

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