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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Don't know much about history

All you had to do is listen to the Republican presidential candidates to know Americans have a problem with their history lessons.

The National Assessment of Eduction Progress has put numbers to what Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin have already demonstrated: simple, basic facts about America's past are either not being taught of not being retained. The depth of the problem is staggering:
... most fourth graders unable to say why Abraham Lincoln was an important figure and few high school seniors able to identify China as the North Korean ally that fought American troops during the Korean War.
If that wasn't bad enough, only 2 percent of 12th graders were able to answer a question of Brown v. Board of Education, with the answer in front of them!

Is it any wonder voters are susceptible to the revisionist history offered to them by candidates?

And is it surprising that the rest of the world is taking exception to the notion of American exceptionalism when we presume to tell them what to do when we are often short of the facts?

This is a nation that has billions for defense contractors and scraps for education. It is home to politicians to flaunt their own ignorance before the cameras. When do we start to set real priorities and not bend to the will of lobbyists who manipulate ignorant "leaders" to get their way -- with our money?

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What it shows me is that the union teachers like the ones in Worcester (70,000 a year avg) who work part time (summers off) are overpaid.

June 15, 2011 8:45 AM  
Anonymous GhostOfTyrone said...

Hi Anonymous!

You must have gone to a private school then - that's why you're so smart!

I'll bet if we paid teachers less, we'd get better results! That makes sense! And hey, let's cut their benefits, too! That way we'll be sure to attract some top talent!

Better yet, let's just privatize the entire educational system! It will be like UPS for learning! Because, you know, UPS is so much cheaper than the USPS...or, well...at least UPS isn't funded by our taxes...err, well. I mean, why should we the people get together and do anything that private industry could make a buck on? Unions suck!

Now, let's all go back to reminiscing about the good old days of 6 day work weeks, no minimum wage, no safety laws, no complaining!!

Let's see how Wisconsin looks in a few months. I'm sure the street will be paved in gold, right?

June 15, 2011 4:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, let's just throw money at it and if we paid them twice as much I bet our kids could outscore kids from Mongolia in standardized tests. Do you think the system in place is working? If so your satisfaction with complacency is indicative of the results we get from overpaid, tenured, coddled government employees. We should privatize and then buy stock in Sylvan learning centers, which we shouldn't even need.

June 16, 2011 4:55 AM  

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