Archive for education speech

LIVE VIDEO FEED: President Obama’s Third Annual Back-to-School Speech


Oh noes! He's indoctrinating our children again!


Flashback VIDEO: ZOMG! The Howdy Doody Show indoctrinated our children!


Apparently, Clarabell was right up there with President Obama when it comes to indoctrinating our children. Oh, but I kid The Howdy Doody Show.

The point is, here we have a children's TV show teaching kids to sing a song they've clearly memorized about a product the show and the sponsor will clearly profit from, yet there was no effort to condemn it as "indoctrination" back then... because back then there was no tea party, and the GOP was still in possession of their collective faculties.

Sort of.

Oh, and because Clarabell wasn't president of the United States, he was a clown. Like Bill-o the...

Tots selling toothpaste is dandy, tots being told "what to think" about a corporate product is swell, but tots promoting achievements of African Americans during Black History Month? Indoctrination into socialism:

Private business: Yay!! Obama: Booo!


Texas Board of Education Watch: US Christian conservatives drop references to slave trade


Cynthia Dunbar is one of a clutch of US Christian evangelists who have grasped control of the Texas education board.

Photograph: Harry Cabluck/AP

Remember when conservatives were up in arms because they believed that President Obama was "indoctrinating our children" when he gave a speech that included this commie message:

"Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide."

What could Obama have been thinking?! Who sends messages like that!? Praising kids!? Encouraging them to strive for worthwhile goals?! Appalling.

And how convenient that we get more thorough news coverage of  the Texas board of education in a British publication than we do here at home. Anyone seen wide coverage-- or any-- of this lately? I heard a mention here and there, but I've seen more about a tragic shooting of a 7-year-old than of the decline of our education system.

Via The Guardian:

Cynthia Dunbar does not have a high regard for her local schools. She has called them unconstitutional, tyrannical and tools of perversion. The conservative Texas lawyer has even likened sending children to her state's schools to "throwing them in to the enemy's flames".

Had I only realized how unAmerican public schools were, I would have insisted that my parents send me to one that was not considered enemy territory. I mean, look how I turned out! I used to be so compliant. Now I'm a radical perverted Marxist blogger who craves tyranny and, apparently, flames.

She is one of a clutch of Christian evangelists and social conservatives who have grasped control of the state's education board. This week they are expected to force through a new curriculum that is likely to shift what millions of American schoolchildren far beyond Texas learn about their history.

The board is to vote on a sweeping purge of alleged liberal bias in Texas school textbooks in favour of what Dunbar says really matters: a belief in America as a nation chosen by God as a beacon to the world, and free enterprise as the cornerstone of liberty and democracy.

"A nation chosen by God." Yes, God chose America the way he chose George Bush and Barbie McLipSchmutz. And that's how Barack Obama became president.

Several changes include sidelining Thomas Jefferson, who favoured separation of church and state, while introducing a new focus on the "significant contributions" of pro-slavery Confederate leaders during the civil war.

That's right, kids, nothing says liberty and justice for all like slavery. Shackle your not-white chums and force them into hard labor.  It's the American way!

There is also a suggestion that the anti-communist witch-hunt by Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s may have been justified.

Blacklisting was a bad thing? Fugetaboutit! Those reds deserved it! Just ask Dalton Trumbo and Lillian Hellman, those dirty commies!

The education board has dropped references to the slave trade in favour of calling it the more innocuous "Atlantic triangular trade", and recasts the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as driven by Islamic fundamentalism.

So that's what the kids are calling it these days. Much easier to digest, don'tcha think?

Here in the good old U.S of A. we get more via Eileen Smith:

I have no problem with teaching religion in school. At my school we prayed every day and were even forced to go to mass. Oh wait. That’s because it was Catholic school.

We’re all familiar with the Thomas Jefferson controversy and the battle over evolution but here’s one I hadn’t heard before. The board has dropped references to “slave trade” in favor of “Atlantic triangular trade.” Now that’s creative. If you look that up on Wikipedia, it says “see also: Atlantic slave trade.” No way! Fooled again! The history books will also describe the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as driven by Islamic fundamentalism. Oh no you didn’t! Can I try? Northern Ireland lost and it’s now all the Republic of Ireland! Boom!

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to find my way back through the looking glass.

H/t: Misha44_


From the Dep't. of Double Standards: The Greatness of St. Ronnie


By GottaLaff

I got wind of this event via a reader. What event, you ask? Why, it's a swell essay contest! Brought to you by the Utah GOP who encourages the kiddies to gush about Ronald Reagan.

Now then, children, let's think back a couple of months to Obama's speech to all those students who he did his level best to indoctrinate. Remember that?

Just a few months after school officials in Utah's Republican strongholds adamantly opposed any effort to allow schoolchildren to watch an address from the president of the United States at school, Utah County schools are collaborating with the Utah County Republican Party to hold an essay contest for sixth-graders extolling the greatness of Ronald Reagan.

"The greatness of Ronald Reagan." Why, without him, our economy wouldn't be what it is today! Trickle down became a household phrase, and... Oh, what the heck. Reiterating all his saintitudiness would just bore you.

Besides, you can hear it all you want, daily, from the Rushpublic punditiots on the Tee Vee Machine.

I wonder who in particular would sponsor such an indoctrinatey love fest?

The e-mail, from the district's social studies curriculum director Todd Billings, said the Republican Party is sponsoring the essay contest for sixth-graders in the Provo, Alpine and Nebo school districts -- all within Utah County -- with a $250 first prize, $100 second prize and $50 third prize.

Oh, so they're paying the kiddies for their efforts. Isn't that socialistic of them, spreading the wealth like that.

Would you like to join the fun?

The essays are to be submitted to

My bad. I see I'm getting my back up for nothing. See, there's a difference between this tribute to St. Ronnie's legacy and President Obama's speech, see:

But Provo district spokeswoman Laken Cannon says there is no improper use here. Reagan is a past president, like Washington or Lincoln, she said, and not someone currently running for office. Plus the students are not required to participate. It's voluntary.

Voluntary indoctrination is so much more acceptable. Please disregard this entire post.


A Teen's Reaction to the Fort Hood Memorial Service


By GottaLaff
Image via Fort Hood Sentinel

I've previously posted the observations of a remarkable high school student regarding the Ft. Hood shootings. Her insights were unique and poignant. Please read them here and here.

She just IMed me the link to her own blog post on the same subject, and I strongly recommend going over here to read it. Just to tantalize you, here is an excerpt or three:

The United States has been at war in Afghanistan since the fall of my second grade year, and in Iraq for half of the years I have been in school. [...]

My brother wears the same uniform as the grieving soldiers, and he has served at Fort Hood. I lived with him at Fort Hood during one of his trainings for his career as an army truck mechanic. The buildings in the background of the live shots were familiar to me, and I imagined that afternoon what it would be like to attend a memorial for my own brother. [...]

We have not seen military funerals for any of the 5000 military service members killed in combat in Iraq or Afghanistan since I learned to write my name in cursive. Our morning announcements don’t indicate the number of those forever wounded in body or soul in that time. And we have certainly seen no mention of Afghan or Iraqi civilians killed by our military since my adult teeth started coming in.

Remember, the author just turned 18. The "professional" punditiots could take lessons.
Fellow Soldiers, family and guests take a moment of silence during a memorial service for 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division Soldiers: Spcs. Jake Velloza, Jeremiah McCleery, and Shawn Sykes, June 18, at Fort Hood’s 1st Cavalry Division Memorial Chapel. Sgt. Karl Williams, 3rd BCT, 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs

"Why didn’t my school show ... memorials for... the 100+ Ft. Hood soldiers that ... committed suicide this year?"


By GottaLaff

Yesterday I posted something I hope you already read, or will read. It was about a Texas school district that thought President Obama's education speech should be off limits, but didn't blink when kids watched him talk about mass murder. I described the point of view of one of the students.

That teen and her brother recently called Fort Hood home, and now the 25-year-old brother is in the Army, stationed in Afghanistan.

I have now been given permission to link you to the 18-year-old's blog site. She goes by the name freckles cassie and, she shows up here too.

Here's a comment she left on one of the blog posts that was well worth quoting:

Why didn’t my school show us the memorials for all if the 100+ Fort Hood soldiers that have committed suicide this year? Or all of the homeless vets who die from lack of VA health care? Or even all of the memorials for all of the soldiers & marines killed in Iraq & Afghanistan?

From the Department of Sad Irony: Freckles Cassie, a teenager who writes blog entries and comments, is already heads and shoulders better at analysis and is more astute than anyone on ClusterFox and most punditiots in general.

Go get 'em, Freckles Cassie.


School: Obama education speech? No. Empty boots & Taps? No problem.


By GottaLaff

I have a friend who has a high school aged niece living in Williamson County, Texas. The niece's 25-year-old brother is in the Army, stationed in Afghanistan.

I just heard from my friend, just a few minutes ago. It turns out that the niece was very distraught today... so distraught, in fact, that she had a panic attack and had to leave school. You see, the brother and sister lived in Fort Hood from 2004-2006.

The sister wanted to know why she needed her parents' permission to stay in school for President Obama's education speech, but not for the empty boots and Taps that aired without restriction during today's speech honoring those slain by the Ft. Hood shooter.

Good question.

She is still pulling herself together as I write this, which, per my friend, requires a wash cloth and substantial make-up touch-ups.

Yes, in all its education-oriented wisdom, the school district banned the president's speech about why it's important to stay in school, work hard, and aim high. Kids at high schools throughout the district needed the okay from Mom and Dad for that...except those in U.S. government classes. I guess those kids were immune to indoctrination.

However, witnessing the agony of families mourning for their children, fathers, sisters who died at the hands of a fellow soldier? That works for Williamson County.

And speaking of military deaths, putting a young girl through the daily pain and anxiety of wondering whether her own brother is alive or dead, or could come face to face with another Nidal Hasan? She can handle that, she's old enough. That won't leave an imprint at all.

But hearing these words will scar her forever:

Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide.

That was a no-no, but this is perfectly acceptable:

I join her in her fears for her brother's life... and in her tears over the priorities of what's left of our so-called family values.