Tag Archives: conservative

Can America Survive the Arrogant, Elitist Imbeciles of Academia?

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Universities are supposed to be places where genuine learning occurs, where the atmosphere of academic freedom abounds for intellectual stimulation, experimentation, inquiry, debate and speculation. In other words, universities are supposed to be portals to the universe of truth, knowledge and wisdom. We are not speaking here of the professional training one may get in, say, law, medicine, or one of the hard sciences. We are speaking here of the undergraduate university where one is supposed to ponder the central problems of philosophy and ethics, where one absorbs the quintessential and seminal lessons from the purely academic study of history, literature, mathematics, and the social and physical sciences, as distinct from professional and technical subjects, in other words, the Liberal Arts and Humanities.  These are the basis of all true education and without them there can be no serious level of learning.

There used to be a reasonable correlation between a degree from a famous educational institution and an excellent education. But correlation is not causation, as one saying goes. An Ivy League degree may be handsome, but, as another saying goes, Handsome is as handsome does. It may be true that a degree from a major institution makes it easier to find high paying jobs, but it is now questionable whether the actual education one obtains there is real.

The purpose of a university education is to provide the tools for an intellectual life, for an ongoing process of thought, ideation and self-learning, for constant and relentless inquiry and expansion of experience and knowledge. Indeed, these are bound to continue beyond a single lifespan, by virtue of the fact that one’s participation in the process contributes to a vast and ready repository of knowledge and wisdom as it is passed on to future generations and is ever added to by them.

A university is NOT supposed to be a place where someone stuffs your head with propaganda and tells you not to examine it further or warns you not to crash its boundaries by questioning its highly questionable premises. But there is a danger that when the core disciplines are taught by professors whose minds and ideas are imbued with a bias, what they teach will also be biased, thus the student absorbs only one side of an argument.

Noam Chomsky has often called the US a terrorist country, which it clearly is not, despite what he presents as his “research.” Cornell West has preached an afro-centric line of academic-sounding racist drivel for years, attacking black Conservatives as “playing a dangerous game.” Thomas Sowell, Ward Connerly, Michael Steele, Condoleeza Rice and J.C. Watts are not playing any kind of game, but Cornell West certainly is. He plays the “dangerous game” of social-liberal politics, while masquerading as an enlightened intellectual. Bill Ayers, who supported Barack Obama and helped engineer his Alinsky-inspired Marxism, said at various times, “Kill all the rich people. Break up their cars and apartments. Bring the revolution home, kill your parents, that’s where it’s really at” and “I don’t regret setting bombs.”Ward Churchill said, “There is no consensus, there is no homogeneity, there is no truth.” How does a student learn to pursue the truth when he is told that it does not exist? It may be unfair to compare Ayers with Chomsky and West, or even Churchill. Ayers came of age in a time when it was chic for well-to-do young people to declare themselves members of the counterculture, counter to that culture in which they were raised, often as children of privilege. And, so far as I know, neither Chomsky, Churchill nor west, ever bombed a building to protest  the America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. But Ayers did these things not merely to protest, but to defeat his own avowed enemy, the US, because he was a declared Communist at the time. Nonetheless, Chomsky, West, Churchill and Ayers are academics who, at one time or other, have been or continue to be affiliated with universities of high reputation. Not every university student comes under one the of these particular academics, of course, but the erosive mindset they represent too often replaces objective debate and the fostering of truly enlightened opinion on far too many US university campuses.

Further, the objectivity necessary to academic freedom is impossible when political correctness, an exclusive tool of the political left, is used to quash objective debate or challenge to its entrenched viewpoint, and no other interpretation of philosophic issues, social issues, or even lessons of history are tolerated. In a June 2013 article entitled “Political Correctness is About to Get Even Worse on College Campuses,” author David Masciotra put it plainly. “Higher educational institutions should function as fertilizers for the free exchange of ideas. Instead they are transforming into bloodless and boring breeding grounds for sensitivity captains who think the world’s biggest problems are flirtatious comments, jokes about cleavage, and books with pictures of scary people on the cover, and it is all done in the name of liberalism…” If a university atmosphere is heavily left-liberal, it is certain that the education provided at that university will also be left-liberal. And if political correctness is employed to stifle challenges to left-liberal thinking and curtail intellectual freedom, there will be a guarantee that graduates from such schools will carry on a left-liberal tradition born of intellectual brainwashing. Under this kind of doctrinaire intellectual repression, truth and its quest will die.

So why does this condition of tyrannical social-liberalism prevail on so many university campuses? Is it naivete in the face of an overwhelming mountain of evidence that social-liberalism is insanity? Or is it that so many university campuses are populated by promoters of an insane ideology because they are insane themselves? It is a given that generational inbreeding leads to insanity and mental retardation with almost calculable certainty. This is as true with intellectual and academic inbreeding as it is with genetic inbreeding.

The current situation on university campuses seems to prove this out with a vengeance. What is defined as liberalism pervades with pandemic virulence the so-called institutions of higher learning. It is certain that decades of teaching and learning the same leftist rot has created a massive number of academics and intellectuals who are incapable of any reaction to the philosophy of individual rights and liberty that is not knee-jerk (I would add, angrily, with emphasis on the jerk part).

The title of “Professor” credits one for being highly intelligent and association with the Ivory Tower of Academe has always carried with it a level of arrogance, presumably earned by ones intellectual achievements. But this can be deceptive in the case of social liberals. For, how can the promulgation of tired, old, failed notions prove ones intelligence? The greatest ideas on the planet that have been tested and proven to be gloriously successful are the very ones on which this nation was founded. They grew out of what was called “The Enlightenment” and were fashioned into the finest, most intelligently constructed set of documents that have ever existed in the history of mankind. Jefferson, Adams, Franklin and Madison were far seeing in a way that Karl Marx and those that pushed his ideology were not.

It is a fact that the ideas of our nation’s Founding Fathers, which espouse free enterprise and individual liberty, have led to the highest level of political, economic and social prosperity ever known in human history, while ideas that espouse collectivism and its concomitants of socialism, communism and social-liberalism, have led to political, economic and social degeneracy. If anyone earned the right to arrogance, it was the Founders of our republic and not the “professors” who disparage it and them.

It is sadly ironic that Social Liberalism as a philosophy is nothing more than the dilution of the Founders’ philosophy with elements of socialism, serving only to weaken the Founders’ extraordinary success. Thus, social-liberals take a perfectly workable set of premises and weaken them with unworkable elements. They use freedom to impede freedom. Is this ironic or tragic? Is it brilliant or just stupid? Socialism in all its forms has proven to be an abject failure, thus it is clearly NOT enlightened. So why not throw it out and accept the one philosophy that is truly enlightened? Only the mentally retarded or insane would do such a thing and only the mentally retarded and insane would praise doing it.

Yet studies in recent years have shown that college faculties by large percentages continue to be staunchly and stubbornly liberal in their thinking and support political correctness to enforce their views. Free speech seems to be a dying animal on college campuses and the promise of a true education is dying with it. In a 2005 article in the Washington Post, Howard Kurtz states, “By their own description, 72 percent of those teaching at American universities and colleges are liberal and 15 percent are conservative.”

In another article on the same subject entitled “Should we care that US universities are ‘too liberal’” the author says, “America’s top universities seem to offer everything except conservative views. That’s not healthy for political debate.”

In an article from October of 2012 entitled “Moving Further to the Left,” author Scott Laschik states, “Academics, on average, lean to the left. A survey being released today suggests that they are moving even more in that direction. Among full-time faculty members at four-year colleges and universities, the percentage identifying as ‘far left’ or liberal has increased notably in the last three years, while the percentage identifying in three other political categories has declined.’”

These represent only a small section of commentary on the situation. Leftist propaganda is so rampant in politics that it sometimes makes one’s senses dull to it. When yet another TV news clip appears with Charles Schumer on it, I change the channel in the hope of finding something more entertaining or enriching. This is at times amusing. But when we realize that the same degenerate propaganda spewed by Schumer and his ilk also forms the philosophic premises on which our children are being taught, it hits close enough to home that it ought to alarm us, every one. I should add that the use of the term “Philosophic” in reference to Charles Schumer is itself a ridiculous irony. He is nothing more than an opportunist politician and if I have accused him of having the brains to grasp the destructive nature of the very philosophy he embraces, I truly apologize to Mr. Schumer. Possessing an enlightened intellect is the last thing I’d accuse him of.

The destructive ideas of Leftist Social Liberalism come from somewhere and it is not directly from the politicians. Despite the repeated proven failure of Socialism over the better part of a century, its idea is being kept alive, like a brain floating in a jar of murky fluid, on university campuses, and the white coated “mad scientists” who are keeping its defunct cells alive are members of Leftist university faculties. Why? Because they themselves have been infected with the disease of social-liberalism and in the degenerate structure of their minds, the ghost still haunts, like the fumes of a corpse that will not lie down and die properly.

In my opinion, this makes questionable whether one should expose one’s children to such an atmosphere. Would it be better just to buy many, many books and encourage them to read the lessons of history on their own? No, of course it wouldn’t. Higher education needs instruction and it is incumbent upon parents to find a way to keep their children from the infection of bad ideas. Moreover, the need of a university to keep its endowments full in order to remain viable comes before its desire to enable the Noam Chomskys, the Bill Ayerses and Cornell Wests to infect our children with their ideas. If that were their sole purpose, then universities would provide little or no hope for a true education and would eventually be forced to close their doors.

Is it possible, then, for all this to change and for a new flowering of true education on college campuses that is without the taint of a social-liberal slant and the pernicious tyranny of political correctness? Of course there is, because there has to be. Universities will have to find a way out of the present situation, because, if they don’t release themselves from the stranglehold of modern social liberalism and replace it with true academic and intellectual freedom, a new Dark Ages will descend. And a nation can die when its intellectual and academic roots rot. Social-liberalism is dying already, anyway. It is eroding from within and will eventually collapse from its own decay and the universities will have to be ready for that eventuality. They may believe that they are safe for the moment, so long as the truth is not recognized by the public at large and an outcry against them does not develop. But the public is losing interest, at least in one way that may be difficult for universities to follow.

The proliferation of private and online schools, calling themselves universities and offering short-term, practical courses of study in business, the technical fields, education and the law are drawing large enrollments of students who have little or no interest in struggling through a four-year Liberal Arts program. But the shorter, more convenient approach they provide may not be the only reason they are becoming hugely popular. The atmosphere on university campuses may be too hostile for students for whom the term “education” equates more with practical immediacy and less with struggle and the spectre of political correctness. There is no sensitivity training required of accountants and computer specialists, at least not at University of Phoenix or DeVry University, and ITT does not offer a Black, Womens or Gay Studies major.

To be sure, Liberal Arts education is not dead, but it may be less and less inviting when the choice of a job is juxtaposed with what passes today for a university education. Universities will eventually realize that doctrinaire academics discourage the enthusiasm many people feel for paying enormous sums for the privilege of being indoctrinated. A degree from Harvard, Yale or Princeton is hardly necessary to get a job in teaching, finance or even law nowadays. Mostly, they are good for becoming yet another academic professor, and if the prevailing need seems to be for Social Liberal academic professors, then there will continue to be a market for their credentials, but market trends change even for university professors. Eventually, professors may have to jettison their leftist bent and then what will they do when this is the basis of all their thinking?

Such change can be difficult and slow. It may take decades, but it will come with an outcry from the rational elements of the population demanding that their children be educated in an open environment, free of forced ideologies and without the imposition of political correctness, where free speech and free exchanges of ideas takes place without restriction. But whether or not this promises to happen in our lifetime remains open to question.

FJ Rocca is an independent, conservative writer/blogger of fiction and non-fiction, most interested in the philosophy of American conservatism. Clarity is more important than eloquence, but truth is vital to human discourse.

 

3 Comments

Filed under College Education

Reaching Young Minds Through BOOKS: Yes We Can!

Conservatives often wonder how they can make an impact on the youth of America. When it comes to the youth and political ideology, conservatives tend to believe that it is inappropriate to force political viewpoints onto children and teens. As educators, we acknowledge it is both unethical and unprofessional to push a political agenda in the classroom (of course, this never stopped many of our college professors and teachers growing up).

Admittedly, all educators have political biases. At a fundamental level, some of these ideas are tied to who we are as people. It is impossible for biases to not bleed through at one point or another in our classrooms, that is human nature. I don’t expect perfection of any teacher, liberal or conservative. I do expect them to operate out of a character ethic that respects the development of the students in their classroom.

The question becomes, how do you expose teens to ideas that we would classify as conservative while still being ethical and professional? I have always believed that if you truly teach a child to think critically, to question with boldness, and to use logic and reason instead of emotion they will arrive at some point on the right side of the American political spectrum. The reality is that many educators in our schools do not teach children to think critically, to question with boldness, and to use logic and reason instead of emotion.

So, we are left with a bit of a quandary.

I have a solution, and one I think we, as conservative teachers, can play a large role in. It is an area I would like to see this website focus on. And it is an area that I am going to need your help with.

I THINK OUR SOLUTION LIES IN BOOKS!

The left is successful in this country often because they prey on both the illiterate and alliterate. If you are wondering, alliteracy is the concept that people can read, they just chose not to. I believe that alliterate people are just as dangerous as illiterate people. At least illiterate people know they aren’t educated. Alliterate people often are arrogant know-it-alls that think they have all the solutions for life. Usually, they do not have one piece of evidence to back it up.

If you have ever truly examined a liberal argument, on most issues you will find that it is based upon emotion and feeling. Rarely, are their arguments based on statistics and deep study of an issue.

I have read voraciously my entire life. I usually consume somewhere around fifty books a year. I tend to read a wide range of books. As a middle school English teacher, I require myself to read at least thirty books during the school year and many of these books are the same books my middle school readers read.

It is my hope to turn Conservative Teachers of America into a site for some of the best book reviews for young adult literature in the country. Who are the conservative authors for young adults? What books promote the principles of freedom? What are the young-adult books that tell the American story, both good and bad? What are the books that challenge young adults to think? What are the books that encourage students to develop moral principles? What are the books in the adult market that we should be getting teens to read as juniors and seniors? I know they are out there because I have read some of them myself. Once we start to identify these books, we can do our part in our local communities to get these books into young-adult hands.

I need your help to do this. Please consider sending me an email at [email protected] with the subject line “Book Reviews” if you are interested in helping out with this project. It is my hope to get as many conservatives (teachers, homeschoolers, parents, high school students, etc.) out there to join in on this. The more reviews the better.

7 Comments

Filed under Young Adult Book Reviews

RFID Chipping: When Students are Determined to be Human Capital, then it’s Necessary to Track them as Inventory.

by Gretchen Logue of Missouri Education Watchdog

One of the schools in my district is looking to implement fingerprint scans to hurry up the lunch line.  Some parents express concern on this practice while others view it as an efficient method to solve a problem of impatient waiting children and decreased times to eat lunch.

I read education articles from progressive to libertarian to conservative sites.  Regardless of political affiliation, writers from all sides are concerned about data mining of students and the future implications of

  • who has access to this information
  • where it will be shared
  • how it might be used
  • possible data breaches compromising private and sensitive information

Voices championing these programs are the ones making money off the data mining information and programs and the clueless taxpayers who believe governmental agencies have our individual interests in mind as the basis for these programs.

The article Student RFID Chipping Conditions American Youth to Accept Government Surveillance covers the gamut for student data mining. Once it’s permissible to scan your child’s fingerprints to receive government services, why isn’t it permissible (or mandated) to use other bioscan techniques in order to receive other educational programs?

A school in Maryland has installed PalmSecure, a biometric scanning system that requires elementary students to place their hand on infrared scanners in order to pay for their school lunch. The unique nuances of each child’s individual hand will be catalogued and the image encrypted with a numerical algorithm that is combined with the cost of school lunches.

PalmSource, a Japanese corporation specializing in biometric technology offers this “authentication system” which is a marketed as a necessity in healthcare, security, government, banking, retail and education.

The corporation also provides an array of RFID chipped tags with memory capacity.

The cost to taxpayers and parents for the installation of this Big Brother surveillance system in 43 schools in Maryland is estimated to be $300,000.

PalmSource is being beta-tested in Florida, Mississippi and Louisiana.

The school district of Spring Independent in Houston, Texas believes that “RFID readers situated throughout each campus are used to identify where students are located in the building, which can be used to verify the student’s attendance for ADA funding and course credit purposes.”

In Texas, children attending school in the Northside Independent School District will be required to carry RFID chipped cards while on campus. The 6,000 student’s movements will be monitored by faculty, in a pilot program that hopes to expand to tracking all students in the 12 districts.

Principal Wendy Reyes of Jones Middle School, explains: “It’s going to give us the opportunity to track our students in the building. They may have been in the nurse’s office, or the counselor’s office, or vice principal’s office, but they were markedly absent from the classroom because they weren’t sitting in the class. It will help us have a more accurate account of our attendance.”

In the San Antonio school district, the Student Locator Project (SLP) is being beta-tested at Jay High School and Jones Middle School – two schools in the Northside district. The SLP includes the use of radio frequency identification technology (RFID) to “make schools safer, know where our students are while at school, increase revenues, and provide a general purpose ‘smart’ ID card.”

Students rallied against the use of RFID chips in two of their middle schools in San Antonio, Texas. The school district “maintained” that controlling truancy and tardiness as well as gaining $2 million in state funding for the use of these tracking devices was the motivation behind the implementation of the technology.

The school district of Spring Independent in Houston Texas believes that “RFID readers situated throughout each campus are used to identify where students are located in the building, which can be used to verify the student’s attendance for ADA funding and course credit purposes.”

In order to check out school library books, register for classes, pay for school lunches, the “smart” ID card is being employed to trace and track students and their movements on campuses all across America. By using leverage of educators to coerce school districts to adopt this method of tracking students, the argument for the use of the RFID technology is campus safety, efficient registration, and food and library programs.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) demands that ranchers use RFID chips to monitor their livestock. It is expected that RFID chips will become a part of our daily life, with their presence embedded in clothing, packaging, and bar-code labels on retail goods.

Herding and surveying people in our society with the use of RFID chipping disrupts our innate ability to remain private and infringes on our Constitutional civil liberties. The information contained in the RIFD chip could be the individual’s social security number, home address, medical records, school records, criminal records, financial records, and any other information that can be referred to digital storage. These chips can be accessed either by a source 100 feet or more from the person wearing the RFID chip. Remote access to the information contained in the chip is able to be read by directed satellites and sent to database centers where it can be used within a digital profile.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has built 70 counterterrorism fusion centers across the nation. The cost to taxpayers is $1.4 billion so that federal and local law enforcement agencies can use surveillance equipment to database the movements of American citizens. According to a US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations report on fusion centers, some may be allocated for pre-crime suspicions, others would be simply watched so that they the US government will be able to properly learn how to control a mass of people.

These fusion centers receive mostly unusable information that endangers citizen’s civil liberties. The Committee could not surmise from data provided by DHS how the fusion centers worked with local law enforcement, but rather came to an assumed conclusion that data being collected on Americans is being stored within DHS facilities for the expressed (and as of now unknown) use by the federal agency.

Meanwhile, mainstream media is busy selling the idea that multi-media devices like smartphones, need to be implanted in the body. In the not-so-distant future, corporations hope that humans will embed microchips into their brains in order to use technologically advanced devices. However, this endeavor has a dark side.

It is predicted that in 75 years “microchips can be installed directly in the user’s brain. Apple, along with a handful of companies, makes these chips. Thoughts connect instantly when people dial to ‘call’ each other. But there’s one downside: ‘Advertisements’ can occasionally control the user’s behavior because of an impossible-to-resolve glitch. If a user encounters this glitch — a 1 in a billion probability — every piece of data that his brain delivers is uploaded to companies’ servers so that they may “serve customers better.”

Anngie and I have returned from a trip to a one room Amish schoolhouse.  We’ll be writing in the next few days about the difference between education including electronic tracking vs education delivered in a small, intimate setting with no government surveillance needed.  The difference between how public education students are tracked in school and how the Amish teachers handled student movement on school property is astounding.

This community established the school two years ago.  It was approached by the public school district to sign the students up as public education students.  It would have been a great tax infusion for the district and financing for the Amish school, but for the community school autonomy, not so much.  The community made the decision not to align itself with the public school’s programs.  The Amish teacher understood this tradeoff and while finances are tough for the school, she was pleased she has the authority to teach the students in the manner the community believes appropriate.  She was aghast that local public school districts are now mandated by Washington DC for much of the education delivery on the local level.  I can just imagine her response on chipping children for informational data information for governmental use.

Here’s a website  alerting folks to the dangers of chipping children like cattle.

3 Comments

Filed under Data Mining/Tracking