We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
The Crisis of Education in America: "How to Become a Serf"
Although the author makes several valid points about education versus training, he completely misses the underlying condition of a class structure which makes imperative an emphasis on training.
Since the rise of civilization some 10 to 15 thousand years ago, there never has been pure education anywhere. That is simply because along with civilization we have seen tiny ruling classes dominating nearly all societies for their class benefit. Because societies are systems, any sector that controls society will organize all elements in that society according to their interests--usually wealth and power. Education in the US, for example, has been to a considerable extent tainted by ideas that promote capitalism. (Read Disciplined Minds by Jeff Schmidt) Hence, the argument that this author is making is basically the same as suggesting that all predators should become vegetarians.
It is not a matter of either education or training, it is a matter of freeing both education and training and all other institutions of society from rule by a small class of self-interested people. That would require a design of society that eliminates all special privileges to any group of people such as what we have now--the One Percent's private ownership and control of socially produced wealth.
It is precisely this type of politically liberal thinking which poses a major threat to real change in society. It is a sad fact that many on the left such as people who run this website simply do not understand this or they wouldn't be posting articles like this.