The blitzkrieg of changes that Obama has implemented — the nationalization of auto companies and banks, the demonization of the bourgeois (auto executives, physicians in private practice, insurance executives), the arm-twisting behind closed doors — are of the kind we’d expect of Hugo Chavez, pal of Obama’s pal, Bill Ayers.
But young people, educated in a system that allowed Bill Ayers to become a “distinguished professor” of education, heed the siren call of Obama’s Organizing for America and MoveOn.org. I saw them collecting information and signatures at one of the fake town halls given by my Democrat Congressman Hank Johnson here in Atlanta on August 10.
In fact, it seemed that out of the tiny percentage of people in their late teens or twenties at this gathering, which exceeded the overflow hall showing the proceedings on screen, most were Obama zombies. None would give their full names to me; some were from outside the district. All insisted that they had signed “nondisclosure agreements.” One hostile girl with pink hair admitted to being paid for her efforts. One young man who gave his first name only smirked when I told him I write for Pajamas Media: “Isn’t that the place that had Joe the Plumber on?”
Obama would like us to forget about Ayers, whom he dismissed as some “English professor.” We are to forget that they attended New York colleges at the same time, ended up in Ayers’ hometown of Chicago, sat on educational foundations together, had mutual friends, and held a kick-off political campaign in Ayers’ home.
Obama would also like us to ignore the language written by a euthanasia society that calls for five-year reviews of “end-of-life” plans in HR 3200. Those who rightfully see such provisions for what they are endure ridicule, much in the manner of those who condemned communists. Those writing op-eds about life “not worth living” today display a lack of awareness that their language mimics the language of Nazi doctors who got their practice runs for the Holocaust by quietly gassing the very young, the mentally challenged, and the handicapped in the privacy of their hospitals. They too had medical “review committees” of white-coated bureaucrats signing orders for death.
But history teachers will tell you that even Advanced Placement high school students are under the illusion that the concentration camps were places that the U.S. sent its own Japanese citizens.
When I write about Bill Ayers, I am often greeted with the retort that the focus on one kooky professor is a waste of time, that we have bigger problems.
But were it not for the “Destructive Generation” instantiating themselves in our schools, the election of Barack Obama would not have been possible. Had we had a generation who understood history, we would have had voters who understood the vacuity of his rhetoric and the implications of “spreading the wealth.” They would have understood how his writings on Saul Alinsky displayed his propensity for stirring up racial animus, demonizing the opposition, and threatening executives with “pitchfork” mobs (that he would rouse up). We would have seen how his teaching a course on “critical race theory” would naturally lead to a nomination of a Supreme Court justice who sees herself as a “wise Latina woman” who can “empathize.”
They would have seen that Obama’s alliance with Bill Ayers, who has been working on behalf of “education” in Venezuela, would lead to a cozy meeting with Hugo Chavez. While Venezuelans protest against a government takeover of the schools, we allow Bill Ayers to spread his poison to future teachers while paying him an annual salary of $126,000.
Like South American dictators who promise peasants a few hectares through redistribution, Obama promises such things as “free” medical care, education, and new cars to his followers. Like Chavez, he appeals to the peasants — literally the illegal ones streaming into the country, promising rights of citizenship.
The historian Richard Pipes notes that the Russian revolution succeeded in large part because of the uneducated peasants. And in this country, the early communists targeted immigrants who spoke no English and were unacquainted with American values.
Today’s communists, like Bill Ayers, work in our schools aiming to keep American students in the same level of ignorance and tribalism as the peasants of Russia and South America.
They began their nefarious deeds in the 1960s. With help from the Soviet Union, they fomented hatred of the United States and then successfully groomed a generation to colonize the schools. The SDS (Students for a Democratic Society), of which Ayers was a member, spelled out their strategies in their position paper, the Port Huron Statement. Employing the old Soviet strategy of “boring from within,” they focused on “an overlooked seat of influence”: the university. Divested of their history, literacy, and ability to reason, their students became the mob that elected Barack Obama.
I am not the only one to witness the increasing inability of college students to reason. Douglas G. Campbell, writing in Academic Questions, relates a common experience in the college classroom. The former career military officer, while discussing military culture, was accused of being “brainwashed by the military” by a student who had no experience in the military or knowledge of it. When asked what informed her opinion, she could not reply. In frustration she repeated the classroom mantra, that she was “entitled to my opinion.” When she broke into tears, accusing Campbell of being a Nazi, she gained the sympathy of her classmates. I’ve had a similar resistance to facts and logic in the classroom.
Campbell cites a couple of books on pedagogy that he had to read in a mandatory program at his college. One by Stephen D. Brookfield, Becoming a Critically Reflective Thinker, advocates a Marxist methodology called “critical pedagogy,” by which “students are helped to break out of oppressive ways of thinking and acting that seem habitual but that have been imposed by the dominant culture.”
The “dominant culture” that Brookfield refers to is the Western one. It relies on standards of truth, objectivity, and fairness. It uses the syllogism, where a premise based on truth leads logically to a conclusion. Our “dominant culture” also emphasizes fairness, such as notions that people of a certain race are not inherently wiser or that those who demonstrate merit should be rewarded.
But in our schools, from kindergarten through graduate school, a different culture reigns. From textbooks, to teaching strategies that encourage collective thinking, to dorm room indoctrination, students are pressured to give up independent, logical thought for nonsensical theories, group work, and consensus building. They are bullied emotionally and pressured with grades to adopt the thinking of the classroom. At the same time, they are denied exposure to the Western heritage.
Bill Ayers, much admired by fellow education professors, eschews content and discipline. He bristles at the idea of being restricted by a curriculum, policies, or assessments and openly uses his classroom to promote his radical communist views by assigning books that promote communism. His own books are used by professors in colleges of education. A tamer version of his pedagogy is popular among teachers, who while not openly advocating communism nonetheless focus on “social justice” issues through collective thinking.
Conservatives who have seen through these techniques but simply dismiss these kooky professors do so at their peril. They may be protecting their own children through homeschooling and private education, but they are reaping the products in the voting mobs that elected Barack Obama.
Now we are faced with, among other things, the prospect of “death panels” under socialized medicine.
The health care town halls and tea party rallies are the pulse signs of an American spirit that has not yet died. But these gatherings are populated largely by those who are in, or approaching, the age of mandatory “end-of-life” counseling proposed in HR 3200.
As a baby boomer, I viewed such a session at my “town hall meeting” as a group of fresh-faced Emory medical students debated an experienced orthopedic surgeon.
One young student, a Doogie Howser type, cocksure in his white coat, was convinced that he was on the right side of compassion and “social justice.”
The surgeon, who was not wearing the doctor’s coat, argued against the government encroachment into the relationship between doctor and patient. He admitted that there are problems with health care currently, but argued quite logically and ethically against the extreme measures of the bill. He cited his experience of working in a government (VA) hospital. He said that competition means good service for patients and gave examples and reasons.
The med student accused him of “trying to make a profit.” (The good doctor had said he treats at least a couple of children of illegal aliens a month for free.)
As the surgeon understandably became increasingly frustrated in the debate, the med student used techniques that are now common in the classroom: emotional sabotaging tactics under the cover of “conflict resolution.” Acting as if the surgeon were an unreasonable child (or more likely senile), the student said, “Let me crystallize this …” The tone was condescending. It would have been a comic scene were it not for the fact that this future doctor does not seem to understand how HR 3200 violates the Hippocratic Oath.
(The several doctors who spoke at the tea party rally in Atlanta on August 15 all invoked the Hippocratic Oath. But they were all middle-aged. No medical students showed up.)
The medical student at the town hall did say to the experienced orthopedist, “I respect your opinion,” but he dismissed the opinion.
While the economy tanks, the government job sector is growing. Young people are encouraged to educate themselves for jobs in nonprofits and government agencies. They build up their academic resumes with “community service” that does nothing for their intellectual growth.
The visions of modern-day brown-shirted civilian troops have predictably been dismissed as evidence of overworked imaginations of right-wing extremists.
Well, maybe they won’t be wearing brown shirts. Maybe they’ll be wearing white coats.