Over the next few weeks I will be performing my own little political countdown. It's more for my amusement than anything else, but I also feel that it's a good way to glimpse into the mind of the average Liberal. Such humorous creatures these Liberals, and yet so mysterious. This is my list of the top 20 things Liberals don't believe. We'll say it's in the interest of understanding one another.
"Give us the child for eight years and it will be a Bolshevik forever." That was a famous quote by the pioneer of childhood indoctrination, Vladimir Lenin. Lenin knew that children were impressionable. That they have vulnerable minds that can be molded according to your political ideology. That's why he targeted the children. The survival of his beloved soviet state depended on the children being properly indoctrinated. No. 18 on my countdown of things Liberals don't believe is Education.
Education, as I define it, involves the teaching of fact. Fact is truth. There is no denying fact. There is no arguing it. Fact is fact and education is the teaching of fact. The three school subjects that deal predominantly with fact are Math, Science and English. 2+2 is 4. The earth's atmosphere is predominantly nitrogen. And a sentence requires a subject and a verb. These are facts. History also contains facts but you have to be careful here because history is something that is prone to opinion, which Liberals love to teach. I'm for teaching historical fact but strongly opposed to teaching opinion.
Liberals disagree. They see our education system as an opportunity to further their agenda. Young minds are ripe to be molded and so they've chosen our education system as ground zero for advancing the Liberal cause. And this is no doubt the source of the major problems that our education system faces. After all, it's hard for our kids to score well on standardized tests when they are being taught about American imperialism, the salvation of the New Deal, and the great philosophy of Chairman Mao. And when you have teachers scolding students for wearing their "Jesus goggles" then you can see which direction we're headed. The more time you spend furthering your politics, the less time you have to teach basic scientific, mathematical and historical fact.
It begins with teachers. Now, this is dangerous ground for a conservative because teachers are considered saintly in Liberal eyes. Criticizing teachers will immediately invite a skewering from the Left because teachers can do no wrong. The reality is that, like all other professions, there are good teachers and bad teachers. But try saying that to Liberal and prepare for a tongue-lashing. The same people who call for the lynching of Catholic priests who commit sex crimes within the church willingly turn away without a whimper when a teacher is caught doing the same thing. Teachers are saintly. They can do no wrong.
The problem is that the teachers unions have made it virtually impossible to weed out the bad teachers. Again, teachers can do no wrong. So the bad teachers are firmly entrenched in the education system and continue to teach children regardless how incompetent or ineffective they may be. Ask any administrator about the difficulty in firing a teacher and prepare yourself for a long story. If Liberals believed in education they would be in favor of getting rid of the bad teachers. But education and indoctrination are two very different things.
Then there's the immense power of the teachers unions. They have lots of money and they wield it effectively, almost all of it going to the coffers of the Left. In return, the Left looks after them. The longstanding American tradition has been to keep education local, funded locally, run by local officials. This trend was bucked when Jimmy Carter established the Dept of Education, and so began the federal gov't digging their grubby little hands into our education system. This was also about the time the teachers unions began to grow in power. The more power the feds have in education the easier it is to lobby and influence that power. Simply put, it's easy for a union to influence a few congressmen rather than have to influence multiple school districts that are funded and run independent of the feds.
The Left will say that money is the problem. We don't spend enough on education and we don't pay the saints who teach nearly enough. They ignore the fact that education spending has done nothing but increase over the past 2 decades. They ignore the fact that the US spends more per student than the nations whose children kick our butts on standardized tests. They ignore the fact that the more we spend on education, the poorer we perform. But then again, ignoring facts is a centerpiece in Liberal education.
Mention things like charter schools, private schools or school vouchers and the Liberal will give you another tongue-lashing. Again, they ignore the fact that these types of schools consistently outperform public schools despite having fewer resources and paying their teachers lower salaries. Seems to me that if Liberals wanted good education for our kids then they'd acknowledge these facts and do what they could to maximize the availability of these alternatives to the public system. But who cares about facts? The Liberals dig their heels in and demand more money for education while the teachers unions stand firmly behind them. And if you oppose more money, then you obviously don't care about the children.
Barack Obama believes in public education. One of his first actions as President was nullifying the D.C. voucher program. This program was enormously successful and very popular with many inner city parents. But education is a public matter. So the President killed the program, and then enrolled both of his children in a pricey, prominent local private school.
Common sense Americans see education as many things, one of those being a civil rights issue. John McCain called it the civil rights issue of our time during his 2008 campaign. There are many inner city students, many of them black, who are trapped in inner city schools simply because of their address or their zip code. These schools do nothing but fail. And by that I mean fail to teach. Of course, the students themselves pass, enough so that many kids graduate high school unable to spell their own name. These schools are riddled with crime, drugs and teenage pregnancy. Children who attend these schools aren't going to learn as much as they are going to survive. Learning math and science takes a backseat when your life is literally in danger. It's a shame. A travesty. No student should be forced into that kind of environment. Not in this country. Not ever.
That's why common sense Americans favor vouchers. Let the responsible inner city parents send their kids to their school of choice, where they can be safe, where they can learn, where they have a fighting chance to kill the vicious cycle of poverty by learning what they need to succeed in life and get out of the ghetto. No way, say the Liberals. Instead, they just want to dump more money into that failing inner city school. It's lack of funding that's the problem. And if you oppose this, then you don't care about the children, and you're probably a racist to boot.
In truth, the Liberals (and the teachers unions) know that once a voucher program kicks in then those failing schools will bleed students to more competent schools. The bad schools eventually collapse, leaving many teachers and administrators without a job. Even worse, vouchers would shift the power in our education system away from the government and the teachers unions and toward the parents. When the parents can take their child and their tax dollars out of a school, you'd better believe they will have more power. No way will the Liberal ever allow that.
Even more disastrous for the Liberal cause would be the likelihood that a voucher system would result in more success in our education system. More inner city students would thrive, would succeed in life, would escape the inner city and embark on illustrious careers. This is bad politics because people like that could become Republicans. No way will the Liberal ever allow that. Instead, it's best for those inner city kids to stay in the failing school, and stay in the ghetto where they belong, dependent on government aid (and the Democrat party).
Thus the focus in education is not education, but rather indoctrination. Keep the kids from learning fact, and instead teach them ideology. Keep them away from success and instead keep them dependent on the government. If they were to succeed they could potentially become free thinkers. That's a dangerous thing for the State. Lenin knew it, and so do Liberals.