Indoctrination Camps

Steve Benen at the Washington Monthly has a post up about the Republicans who want to do away with public schools.  He quotes Rick Santorum talking about Mussolini’s Fascist Italy.  His uncle

used to get up in a brown shirt and march and be told how to be a good little fascist….I don’t know, maybe they called it early pre-K or something like that, that the government sponsored to get your children in there so they can indoctrinate them.

The upshot here is that there are several Republicans who are increasingly willing to talk about doing away with public schools altogether.  This amounts to a willingness to do away with universal education (since they would eventually want to cut the vouchers to less than what schools charge).

What’s funny here is when have the schools not been about indoctrination as well as education? When I was in school, we said the Pledge of Allegiance (“under God”) every day.  What is that if not indoctrination?

Conservatives have lost the battle over control of the indoctrination message and their final last ditch effort is to do away with public education altogether in hopes that the vast majority of private schools will indoctrinate the way the Conservatives want.

To recap:  when the complaint is that the schools are indoctrinating, they mean the schools are indoctrinating the wrong thing.

When they want to do away with public schools, they want to do away with universal education.


I Can’t Stand It

There is a very old Peanuts strip that I am reminded of lately.  In the strip, Lucy is walking with Linus and explaining to him the origin of telephone poles.  She says something along the lines of “The telephone pole is actually a tree specially developed by the phone company to grow without branches.”

Charlie Brown over hears this lecture, drops his head against one of the phone poles and says “I can’t stand it.”

President Obama plans to deliver an address to the nation’s school children that “will challenge students to work hard, set educational goals, and take responsibility for their learning.”

Conservatives are up in arms that the President wants to indoctrinate the nation’s school children with his “socialist agenda.”

So working hard, setting educational goals, and taking responsibility now constitutes a socialist agenda?

I can’t stand it.