Unprintable Scoundrels & Teachers

In Sing!, Suffer No Fools on May 24, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Glad to see Krugman keeping the pressure on Mr. Flim Flam Ryan so the punditry at last accedes what the blogosphere has been saying all along…With joy in thinking Karen may be inspiring some of Krugman’s more wickedly playful jousts against the Robo-Ryans of the world…

A quick dump of 2 comments to the Times, just to sprinkle some water on this dying blog, which I hope to attend to eventually….not sure how Krugman keeps his busy life and manages to post so much!

Alas, I just discovered the below comment was not accepted by the Grey Gizzard.   And I’m not half as spicy as the rest of the blogosphere.

re: Hugette Clark, Recluse Heiress, Dies at 104

\”The youngest of seven children, Huguette Marcelle Clark was the daughter of a scoundrel. A footloose, ambitious young man, he eventually made his way to the Montana Territory, where, in the early 1870s, he struck copper, and with it his fortune.\”

Does Ms. Fox so blithely make such an unsubstantiated assertion because time insulates her from the accusations she hurls?

Not that I wouldn’t agree, but, then, by the same logic, we should be able to make as blunt and bold assertions about our current industrial magnates.

Was he a scoundrel because he literally lucked into his wealth, which he just \”happened across\”–and thus, it became \”his\”?

This fundamental concept of ownership that we so blindly accede to and worship has its roots in an abrogation of public resources for private profit.

Why is Mr. William Andrews Clark more entitled to the copper wealth of the Montana Territory than the Native Americans or all the settlers of the region and the taxpayers of the U.S.?

Water is assumed to be under collective ownership–for now (for in this right wing militia overtaking our world, nothing is taken for granted)—but mineral and oil rights are assumed to belong solely to the person audacious enough to claim them for his own.

Thus, West Virginians see none of their coal wealth, and Louisianins see none of their oil wealth…it all goes to the politicians and the CEOs, while generation after generation live in poverty.

The faulty premises which allowed some individuals to accumulate and control what rightfully should be public resources marches straight through time to today’s epic disparities between rich and poor.  Ms. Huguette Clark’s own life is testament to that.

As long as we continue to believe that a wild west cowboy mentality of finders keepers is the true basis of \”a free-market economy,\” we will continue to unquestioningly let some men be insanely rich while the vast majority scrape to survive.   All men are created equal, be damned.


re:   Tests for Pupils, but the Grades Go to Teachers

History is nothing but the story of prejudice and power.  There is no true objectivity, there are only the myriad subjective experiences…thus, inherently, “standardization” is actually representative only of the biases of a particular historical era and group of people.

Listen for a single day to Northern and Southern politicians talk over each other.  You have at least half the country believing President Obama is the most bright, articulate, reasoned, brilliant leader our country has ever had, and the other half believing he is some alien, not one of us, suspiciously entwined with foreign attempts to overthrow our government, and also an in-your-face, uncomfortable reminder of the enduring scars of slavery and the Civil War on our nation’s psyche.

From budget wars to wars in Afghanistan and beyond, identity politics and ideological wars are the wedges on which the fulcrum of power careens.  So, too, mandating an elusive standardized test as proof positive of a teacher’s success or failure is yet another power play of New York City education officials upon teachers…nothing else.

Failure or success on these standards, which by nature will always be subjective, will prove nothing about the teacher’s real ability, but will prove how much political power these officials have.

For we tend to rate highly ideas and concepts that resonate most closely with our beliefs–

How laughable that NYC thinks it is holding itself to such high standards, while you have southern states wanting to teach creationism, and remove the study of evolution, as well as some profound and blatant re-writing of history per the Texas school board.

We will never be able to reconcile such contradictory agendas and beliefs as currently exist, and have long existed, in this country.  The best we can do is find an oasis of like-minded people, because we certainly aren’t going to change anyone else.  Leave the teachers alone.   They’ll do the best they can, and it still won’t change people’s fundamental belief systems, or even what it means to be “educated.”


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