We Are the Government. . .
Ohanian Comment: Lynn Stuter writes plenty of stuff that makes me nervous--including some of the "details" in the piece below. However, her analysis of the roots and purposes of NCLB reveals some deep principles on which conservatives and liberals can agree, conservatives and liberals, that is, who aren't toadies to government and foundation money. That, caveat eliminates quite a few from being able to participate honestly in any discussion.
We are the government. And we are here to help you! And, if you believe that, I have some swamp land ... even a bridge ... I'll sell real cheap!
Remember, the purpose of government is to justify its existence, which can only be achieved by increasing its power and position, which can only be achieved by perpetuating problems it claims to be trying to "fix" (not cure).
A prime example of this is education. A Nation at Risk identified the problem: children are not receiving an education. The report further concluded that were another nation doing to America what America is doing to children via the education system, such would be considered an act of war.
Having identified the problem, the government set out to "fix" the problem. The result being Goals 2000 — education reform or systems education — costing billions of dollars, bringing many states to the brink of bankruptcy.
After ten years of education reform, are children receiving a better education? No, but the government has, in the process, increased its power and position.
Locally elected school boards have become nothing more than puppet bodies, rubber stamps implementing state and federal policy and acting as public relations specialists selling education reform and the dumbing down of children to the community, making less education for more money and less control palatable to a populace ready and willing to let the government "help" them.
In the process, parents have lost their God-given inherent right to oversee the upbringing and education of their child or children, ceding to the government, by virtue of their outright consent or silence (tacit approval), local control of their schools; giving to the government the right and ability to determine what they, as parents, must do to provide to the schools the best "ready-to-learn raw resource" (child) possible.
Wanting to make all this more palatable, parents are being given greater "choice" in the education of their child; choices, which, in the long term, are not choices at all but augment a system intended to include, that must include, every child. Charters, vouchers, and virtual academies and curriculums, and distance learning are all intended to accomplish this goal. Choice, under this definition, is like saying you can have any car you want so long as it's a black Studebaker!
Were a business to operate as the government operates, the business would be broke inside one fiscal year. But then, a business does not operate on an open-ended source of income — taxpayers; business operates on profit, and profit depends on achieving and maintaining efficiency and results.
But efficiency and results are not necessarily important when the goal is power and position.
Is it in the best interests of the government to have well-educated children emerging from the public schools? Children who know the history of the establishment of our nation, who know the Constitution and Bill of Rights and what those documents mean in terms of their freedom, who are capable of standing on their own two feet; and who believe in the limited form of government established by the Constitution and Bill of Rights? No, of course not. The government, to increase its power and position, needs people who are complacent, compliant, apathetic; people who are willing to look to the government for their present and future existence and survival.
And that, largely, is what government schools are producing: people who believe the government is there to "help" them find a job, buy a home, buy a car, get an education, take care of their every need; people who are quite willing to be trained to fill jobs according to regional economic development strategies and regional labor market needs as determined by the Federal Workforce Development Board under the auspices of the Federal Workforce Investment Act (WIA).
Taxation to support government programs to "help" people is almost 40% of gross income. Have all the myriad of social programs established via the public coffers helped people become independent and self-sufficient? No, but they have increased the power and position of the government.
And as the amount of taxation has steadily increased, more and more people have slipped into the abyss of the indigent, incapable of making it on their own, dependent on the public dole, establishing a never ending vicious cycle of poverty and dependency.
States are now experiencing financial difficulties. NAFTA and GATT have resulted in companies moving over seas and outsourcing, creating unemployment and loss of tax base and revenue. At the same time, the number of people slipping into the abyss of dependency on the public dole is growing, requiring the government to appropriate more money. But the ability to appropriate more money is not there because the companies are not there and the people needed to pay for it are not there.
Our government was established as a limited form of government. If our nation is to survive, it is time to cut social welfare programs, lower taxes, and return to the people the ability to stand on their own two feet.
Lynn M. Stuter
WE ARE THE GOVERNMENT...
INDEX OF NCLB OUTRAGES