We all know who Libertarian Ron Paul was referring to in this quote, but who is it really true about?
Will this Huffington post report by Christina Wilkie and Joy Resmovits report be tossed in the collective circular files of those in power or will it be attacked as more from the radical left?
I am not radical left. I am pragmatic left. But the more I see what people like the Kochs are doing the more I move away from pragmatism and towards just plain angry!
Excerpts from the report and my comments follow:
“In some ways, the class looked like a typical high school business course, taught in a Highland Park classroom by a Highland Park teacher. But it was actually run by Youth Entrepreneurs, a nonprofit group created and funded primarily by Charles G. Koch, the billionaire chairman of Koch Industries.
The official mission of Youth Entrepreneurs is to provide kids with “business and entrepreneurial education and experiences that help them prosper and become contributing members of society.”
“The underlying goal of the program, however, is to impart Koch’s radical free-market ideology to teenagers. In the last school year, the class reached more than 1,000 students across Kansas and Missouri.
Lesson plans and class materials obtained by The Huffington Post make the course’s message clear: The minimum wage hurts workers and slows economic growth. Low taxes and less regulation allow people to prosper. Public assistance harms the poor. Government, in short, is the enemy of liberty.”
So, instead of teaching through objective examination of theory and practice, skeptical questions, and the use of balanced information for kids to formulate their own ideas, we indoctrinate?
“During the 2012-2013 school year, YE’s credit-bearing class reached more than 1,000 students in 29 schools in Kansas and Missouri, according to the group’s annual report. Vernon Birmingham, YE’s director of curriculum and teacher support, told HuffPost that the course will be in 42 schools in the coming school year.
An offshoot in Atlanta, YE Georgia, reported being in 10 schools in the 2011-2012 school year. Since 2012, YE has also launched three major new initiatives: an online version of its course, an affiliate program to help rural schools access the class, and an after-school program, YE Academy, which served more than 500 students in its first year.”
Kansas, Missouri, Georgia….The creeps are creeping!
“David Koch won the REPUBLICAN party’s nomination for vice president in 1980. That year, its platform proposed a drastic revision of the American education system: “We advocate the complete separation of education and state. Government schools lead to the indoctrination of children and interfere with the free choice of individuals. Government ownership, operation, regulation, and subsidy of schools and colleges should be ended.”
THREE YEARS LATER (UNDER REAGAN) “A NATION AT RISK” WAS PRODUCED! COINCIDENCE?
“Koch-funded think tanks provide many of YE’s course materials. Teachers are trained at Koch Industries headquarters and are required to read Charles Koch’s book The Science of Success.
The focus on high school students is a key part of the Kochs’ long-term effort to create a libertarian-minded society from the ground up. “We hope to develop students’ appreciation of liberty by improving free-market education,” the Koch associates wrote during the program’s initial planning stages. “Ultimately, we hope this will change the behavior of students who will apply these principles later on in life.”
“He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.”
Guess whose quote that is? See the end of post for the answer!
“To find “liberty-minded” teachers who might be predisposed to help them, the team reached out to the network of libertarian groups that benefit from Koch family funding. Many of these groups, including the Institute for Humane Studies, the Bill of Rights Institute and the Market-Based Management Institute, host seminars and conferences specifically for teachers, and they were happy to help the team.”
Is this from Fahrenheit 451 or 1984?
“YE supplied Davis [a YE teacher from Kansas] with a syllabus, timeline and “all the handouts that you would need,” he told HuffPost. Before the school year started, he was given a thick binder of lesson plans, as well as flash drives containing quizzes and worksheets. There were also videos, PowerPoint presentations and scores of documents in Microsoft Word. Davis posted many of these resources online, offering the public a rare glimpse inside the highly structured curriculum.
YE’s course materials reflect some of the initial thinking by the Koch associates charged with designing the course. In late 2009, the Koch group made a list of “common economic fallacies” that they believed should be repudiated.
Corporatism v. Free-market Capitalism
Deregulation caused recession in 80s, Economic problems of today
Rich get richer at the expense of the poor
FDR/New Deal brought us out of the depression
Government wealth transfer programs help the poor
Private industry incapable of doing what public sector has
Unions protect the employees
People with the same job title should be paid the same amount…
Minimum wage, “living wage,” laws are good for people/society
Capitalist societies provide an environment for greed
and materialism to flourish
Socialist countries do just fine, people have great lives there
They aimed to “inoculate” students against liberal ideas by assigning them to read passages from socialist and Marxist writers, whom they called “bad guys.” These readings would then be compared to works by the “good guys” — free-market economists like Friedrich Hayek and Ludwig von Mises.”
Objective? NO! Has objectives? Yes!
“Today, to teach its most controversial lessons, YE often relies on videos provided by the Charles Koch-chaired Institute for Humane Studies, which operates out of George Mason University in Virginia. The videos are produced and marketed under an institute arm called Learn Liberty, which offers dozens of educational videos on libertarian and conservative topics.
One such video Davis showed his students defended price gouging. “Anti-gouging laws don’t do anything to address” shortages, the video’s narrator argues. Another video titled “Is There a Glass Ceiling?” asserts that the gender pay gap is a myth. Women earn around 75 cents for every dollar earned by men, it says, but not because of discrimination in the labor market. Rather, it’s because of “differences in the choices that men and women make.”
Other Institute for Humane Studies videos on the syllabus inform students that the cost of living isn’t actually rising, that minimum wage laws harm workers and that the poor aren’t “really getting poorer.”
AND THEY SAY THEY ARE AGAINST PRESCRIPTED INDOCTRINATION IN AMERICAN SCHOOLS?
“The struggling Topeka school district agreed to let YE train one new teacher a year and provide classrooms. YE would pay the teachers a stipend above their regular salary, supply them with classroom materials, arrange guest speakers and field trips, and provide students with scholarship opportunities, all at no cost to the school district.
Such public-private partnerships are a growing trend in the American education system, as corporations and interest groups come up with ever more innovative ways to market their products and ideas to students in school buildings.”
THE BRIBING OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS WORKS!
“One of the fastest growing elements of YE is a program designed to keep students engaged in what is referred to across Koch-funded platforms as “the liberty movement” long after they finish the course. Launched in 2012, the YE Academy runs what it calls “economic ‘think tanks’ for high school students.” The academy relies on the same incentive that initially drew kids to YE: the chance to earn extra money.
“That’s right, the more involved you are, the more money you’ll earn to put toward your business or higher education!” reads the YE Academy homepage.”
THE BRIBING OF STUDENTS WORKS!
“Youth Entrepreneurs is just one piece of the Kochs’ slow creep into America’s schools. The larger Koch effort pushes forward with think tanks, university programs and teacher seminars as well.
But with YE, the Koch pipeline for creating a new generation of liberty advancers now starts early: A student can take the YE course in high school, participate in the YE Academy to earn scholarship money and then use that money to pay for a degree from a Koch-funded university. So it isn’t just a relatively small but growing high school program offered in Kansas and Missouri. It’s part of a larger mission.”
“He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.” Adolf Hitler
WHY ISN’T THAT CRIMINAL?