Every single day, for as long as I can remember, stretching back to when I was a toddler I have tried to learn as much as I can about the world around me.
And, every single day since I was 17 or 18 and discovered that the key to getting the most out of being a member of the so-called most intelligent earthly species was to be conscious, to study and think deeply, I have also sought to develop awareness, of myself, others and that same world, starting right in my little family and radiating outward.
Radiating outward to encompass the neighborhood, the city, the region, the country, the world, the universe.
If I want to be healthy, I have to study hard, a lot of complex subjects that include biology, physiology, anatomy, chemistry, biochemistry, agriculture, climate, ecology. Just for that one endeavor.
When I buy a car, I do extensive research, now made easier by dozens of online sites that put every car on the planet at my fingertips.
So too any household products or a vacation or an academic course or a home to buy or rent.
This is just common sense to me. It is the way I was raised. My parents counseled me to do whatever I could to the very best of my ability and to stretch beyond what I thought were my limits, so I could grow. And the ultimate goal was not only to ensure my own success but that of those and the world around me too.
That is why the current mental sophistry is so unfathomable. When did learning — excellent learning — and reaching higher toward the best that human beings can be and do become suspect?
I can understand the fear about job scarcity and terrorism, while vehemently disagreeing about the way they are being handled. For example, the current administration head has lied and given coal miners the false hope that those jobs are returning. They will not return, because the owners are increasingly mechanizing operations and clean energy manufacturing is becoming more cost effective than fossil fuels production. Terrorists have caused fewer violent deaths in the US than toddlers with their parents’ guns. But, those lies appeal to the fearful. Those I can understand because people are reacting to the world emotionally and not thinking it through or doing their homework with sound information sourcing.
What I cannot understand is the reverse intellectual snobbery that attends the destruction of our information sources, sciences and schools. A small group of dark, destructive men is taking over all three areas.
Clearly, there are dual motives in attacking our free public education system: power and money grabs. But, learning systems cannot be based on profiteering. They must be founded in scientific and empirical knowledge of human (i.e., child) development and a sound, thorough understanding of the physical and social world in which that child is held. Ideology is fine, theorizing a natural outgrowth of human study, but there are actual provable traits and features of human growth that must form the basis of a curriculum. You can’t just dream things up in your head and then ramrod them through by force, if you want an educated, thriving species.
According to the man who runs the White House, the white nationalist, Stephen Bannon, a main aim of the new regime dictating US policy is to “deconstruct” the Federal government. They will be bolstering defense and national security (lucrative defense and weapons contracts, building of private prisons, an enormous militarized deportation force that will involve the erection of massive detention centers and of course the infamous ‘wall’) but destroying other structures such as the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Education under a completely unqualified woman whose only credentials are being the sister of the man who formed Blackwater and marriage to a billionaire.
When do you ever hear of benevolent entities wishing to disasssemble protective apparatuses and strip ordinary people of basic human necessities?
Even Glenn Beck, someone I rarely agree with, has sounded the ominous bell about the minds behind the new isolationist and white national philosophy of this administration, the late French philosopher, Jacques Derrida who came up with the idea of applying Deconstruction wherever one wishes to dismantle ideology and Aleksandr Dugin, a Russian who promotes economic nationalism. According to Beck, Bannon is dangerous.
It is highly irresponsible for people to vote for figures who will determine the world’s fate without knowing what beliefs and agenda are behind their actions. Apparently, 25% of the American adult population did exactly that. No, good paying jobs in obsolete sectors are not being created by these people. They are not improving the economy for the average person and greatest number of people (for example, the middle class will see virtually no tax breaks at all under their plan) and worst of all, they have aimed their deconstruction at education.
By the way, the world’s “white” population is only 10%. So who are these malicious white nationalists doing this for? Certainly not humanity writ large.
Now, as they blatantly defend their ties to the Russian government and a growing circle of illicit oligarchs, they attack the free press and begin to take down the schooling of the populace. If you want to take away someone’s rights and resources, that is how you do it. Keep people disinformed and diseducated.
When you vote, you have to be more proactive than apparently this 25% were. What investigation of this group did they do? Are they willing to give up these intellectual freedoms for the fools’ gold they were promised last year? How about those who did not vote or protest voted for a third party candidate. How will they make this up to us?
I am sorry for being so serious, but this is a grave forecast. This is the aspiration of Steve Bannon and his coterie of nefarious puppetmasters with their megalomaniacal dream of upheaval and world domination. And make no mistake, Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, who have economic aspirations to transfer massive wealth to their corporate cronies, are quietly sitting back and handing the keys to the kingdom to these rasputins.
Again, every single day, I strive to be awake and aware, no matter how painful. Yes, I would like to bury my head and wait this out. But at the other end of this process, which may be a full 16 years from now, America and the world will be very different places if we continue on blithely ignoring what is unfolding right in front of us. No science, no education, no legitimate press, in other words, no facts, no truths, just lies to keep us compliant. 1984 will look like a picnic when these people are done with us.
They need to keep us stuck on stupid. And we are still doing little to stop them.
Image: Wikimedia commons