Malleable Minds Fit for an Affirmative State Designed to Meet Needs and Constrain the Ruled

We actually do not have to infer what kinds of minds and personalities and beliefs are suitable for these new visions of tomorrow. One advocate tellingly used this quote from Napoleon that “There are but two powers in the world, the sword, and the mind. In the long run the sword is always beaten by the mind.” That reality is very galling for many powerful people so they now have nationalized and globalized K-12 ‘reforms’ to extinguish that very capacity. Since we would rebel if we actually understood what was intended, we keep getting a sales pitch about ‘human flourishing’ in so many of these blueprints. As James Madison presciently observed “a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.”

I want to detour for a minute back to the Deepening Democracy paper from the Real Utopias Project because they kindly laid out new ” transformative democratic strategies” for the “Affirmative State” at all levels to use to quietly, but persistently, “advance our traditional values–egalitarian social justice, individual liberty [in the sense of having governments meet everyone’s basic needs] combined with popular control over collective decisions, community and solidarity, and the flourishing of individuals in ways that enable them to realize their potentials.”

Remember Michael Fullan specifically tied the experimental New Pedagogies and Deep Learning in the Global Partnership to the “broader idea of human flourishing?” What we have going on is the marrying of the methods of the Human Potential psychological focus to the political and social ends that track back to Uncle Karl without anyone wanting to ‘fess up’ as we Southerners would say.

All the K-12 education reforms I have tracked, as well as higher ed and increasingly grad schools, are all tied to stealthily pursuing and “accomplishing the central ideas of democratic politics: facilitating active political involvement of the citizenry, forging political consensus through dialogue, devising and implementing public policies that ground a productive economy and healthy society, and in more radical egalitarian versions of the democratic ideal, assuring that all citizens benefit from the nation’s wealth.”

Hard not to remember all those ‘You didn’t build that’ comments from the 2012 Presidential race, isn’t it? Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government by the way calls this new model Empowered Participatory Governance. I am not going to write about it in particular except to point out it ties all the Metropolitanism, Regional Equity, make the mayors and the local the focus of government. The Local is supposed to be the layer that meets the needs, whoever provides the financing or specs on what those needs will be.

So when Lawrence K Grossman and others keep hyping self-governance they are describing a world where everyone’s needs have been met via the political process, not a person’s ability to make their own way independent of governmental interference with their decisions. ‘Self-governance’ is again an Orwellian term tied to the kind of economic and social justice and participatory governance view of democracy that even its advocates above admit is quite radical. I think that’s why its structures and needed values and beliefs frameworks are being quietly put in place through education and the law without any desire for the typical person to catch on in time. Remember Grossman was a prof at the Kennedy School while he worked on The Electronic Republic: Reshaping Democracy in the Information Age.

Whether we understood it in the 90s [remember the Freeman Butts vision from the book?] or now, K-12 education was and is being restructured to fit with “citizens at large gaining the power of self-governance.” Everyone gets their basic needs met, “with the public at large playing a critical role in the government’s decision-making process” and few focusing on the pesky little detail about the crucial shift to a vision where “rulers are subject to control by the ruled.” Similar to all those references to being Governed, instead of the individual independent decision-making power Madison knew he had structured, we are all supposed to settle for having a say, being ruled, but having our ‘needs’ met. Even then, we as individuals do not get to decide what our needs are. This shift we are not being told about unless we Follow the Documents in the Oligarchy’s admitted paper trail, stems from:

“the United States is moving toward a new modern-day form of direct democracy, made possible by its commitment to universal political equality and propelled by new telecommunications technology.”

It is within these unappreciated declarations of intentions to fundamentally transform the social institutions and functions of government that K-12 is being radically altered to a Student-Centered focus so that “the public’s ability to receive, absorb, and understand information no longer can be left to happenstance.” Prime the Mind and Personality to perceive experience as desired and then have the Michael Fullans and Michael Barbers of the world globe trot and insist that all education now must be based on Learning by Doing. All those deliberately created learning experiences to foster emotional engagement around real-world problems are just the ticket to the Mandarins just ever so worried that “today, the American public is going into political battle armed with increasingly sophisticated tools of electronic decision making but without the information, political, organization, education, or preparation to use these tools wisely.”

So we get Common Core, Competency, Digital Learning, new definitions of Student Achievement, and Growth measures that are ALL actually the “conscious and deliberate effort to inform public judgment, to put the new telecommunications technologies to work on behalf of democracy.” That would be the radical Social and Economic Wellbeing form of democracy with its new reenvisioned view of the roles and responsibilities of citizenship. After all, as Grossman told us: “With citizens an active branch of the government in the electronic republic, they need to know enough to participate in a responsible and intelligent manner.” That’s a long way from Madison’s view of knowledge to be our own Governors, but then Grossman loves this concept of our being ruled. In fact, he either deliberately or obtusely shows a drastically altered view of American history and the Constitution where:

“the citizen’s role is not to govern himself, but at best elect those who would be most competent to govern on their behalf…The new Constitution had put in place a modern-day method of selecting Plato’s Guardians.”

Can we all join in a chorus of No. No. No? How telling though is that misstatement? I do snarkily make repeated references to yokes and serf’s collars and Mind Arson when it comes to describing the real Common Core implementation. Yet here is an insider of insiders admitting to a desire to dictate what we all may do and think akin to what an ancient Greek philosopher saw as Benevolent Despotism. For our own good as determined by the Guardians with their taxpayer funded salaries and pensions. This confession reminded me a great deal of Achibugi also seeing harnessing public opinion as the mechanism to getting to the Global Commonwealth of Citizens we met in the last post:

“the more we learn about how to respond to and understand the public, the more we also increase the potential to influence, change, and even manipulate public opinion. In the electronic republic, political manipulation is the other side of the coin of effective political persuasion. What looks like manipulative propaganda to one, invariably is seen as an honest educational effort to another.”

Well, honest if the purpose of education is the chimera of ‘human flourishing for all’ brought to us by Rulers who see people as a biddable branch of government in a new vision of what the future might be. Before I close this post with a quote Grossman used from the Dean of Columbia’s School of Journalism, that deserves a statue in the Hubris Hall of Fame, I want to remind everyone that in 2010 UNESCO began using the term ‘media education’ as two prongs of a single means to get to its hoped-for Marxist Humanist global future. They said it and wrote it and we do get to take insiders at their word on what they are up to when they declare nefarious intentions.

Now imagine these words not just from a Journalism Dean but from politicians, think tank heads, education administrators, and university professors, just to name a few:

“This is the age of media power. We set the agenda. We are the carriers of the culture and its values…We are the brokers of information and ideas. Our decisions, our news judgments tell the people who they are, what they are doing, what’s important and what they need to know.”

Arrogant, yes, but 100% consistent with the real K-12 education ‘experience’ we are encountering. The vision that would be necessary to achieve these declared goals as well as the radical global democracy vision. Plus all those references to being governed and ruled and sovereignty no longer being in the individual.

Those Aims or Goals all fit with the actual Common Core implementation described in detail in the book and the purposes, visions, and methods we encounter daily and weekly now on this blog.

We can fight this, but not while we remain unaware or unwilling to stare down what we are indisputedly dealing with in our schools and universities and virtually everywhere else when we look hard.



23 thoughts on “Malleable Minds Fit for an Affirmative State Designed to Meet Needs and Constrain the Ruled

      • This little game works only as long as those needy people are kept “dumbed down”. But what happens when they realize they are being used? Star Parker is a conservative community organizer who is speaking out very strongly in the black communities and encouraging people to get off welfare and leave the “liberal plantation”. Seems now that lower/middle class whites are taking their place. Welfare and “freebies” can be more addictive and damaging than drugs.

    • Madmommy-it is more than that. The Common Core gives multimedia presentations and interactions parity with print. One is experiential and involves the senses and perception and the other is mental and can be factual. They should not be treated as equivalent unless weakening the mind and manipulating what it perceives is the whole point, which Grossman admits in his book is needed for his view of citizenship.

      I have the same problem with that Jeb Bush report he chaired for Aspen. Learner at the Center of a Networked World. It does the same. By the way Aspen calls this needs economy and society the Impact Economy and the Solution Revolution. Pearson is cited as an example of a steady supplier in it of goods and services that come from the private sector instead of government, but meeting the government specs on what is to be offered. That is NOT free enterprise nor is it based on consumer choice, just a mockery of it.

      • Barber
        And more
        Seriously does “mind your own business !”
        Ever occur to these people? What is ultimo goal? Besides power and money. Something bad.

        Insane creepers working for the man

        • Look who else is involved in pushing a changed nature of work vision. The Open Society Foundations.

          They show up in that link to LL too. It’s about once again conjoining political power and economic power as is the historic norm. Oligarchy does well. Everyone else not so much.

          The huge problem is that all these governments have borrowed to impose the existing yokes. The OPM is running out or has run out and the central bankers cannot keep buying time that much longer. It’s why it’s so paramount to protect our children now so they come out of this horrific vision with their minds intact. When I wrote once about trying to Uninvent the Printing press and its widespread effect on the human mind I was more correct than metaphorical.

      • A friend with child at upscale prp school 12 and a ” visual learner” gets all her assignments on video because reading is too difficult for her. And apparently she is a visual learner.
        The school got new headmaster 7 years ago who implemented transformation follwing the work and model of Lucy Calkins. The admissions dir proudly told me. Of course i had read her book called pathways to common core, so i knew what they transformed to.
        I was looking at this school for my kids as we moved states and i knew nothing except that i was told, by you offline to stay away from one county and i have found this one just as saturated with all this. Private schools more so.
        So this child was labeled likely at risk, victim of whole language, and a cascade of effects of Teaching for social justice and psycho therapy. Now she can hardly read at 12, parents paying 25k for her role as guinea pig.
        Of course i have to button my lip.

        • Madmommy-

          Is there a way we could get in contact offline? I live in Phila burbs like you and I have mucho questions. I think you have been aware longer than I have and I would be happy to know anything about our area that you can share with me.


          • There is a fb page for ISC. If you comment on it you could find each other that way and exchange info.

          • LL-this Brookings presentation yesterday was on Portland in particular but it fits with what is intended for all metro areas with the high schools quietly shifting to a polytech focus that ties into area employers who work with government as a partner in a planned economy that centers on helping those who are minorities or in poverty.

            If you pay attention to the slides they indicate what I have long intuited. Employers will be pressured that they are guilty of discrimination if their workforces do not reflect the population. Especially with WIOA going active in the next year and the plans for immigration amnesty by executive order after the Midterms. Anyone who has ever been the boss remembers how destructive employees are that cannot pull their weight. The vision of the collaborative workplace of the 21st century where the weak get lifted by the talented all on the company’s dime could only have been created by a bureaucrat who thinks salaries just magically get paid somehow. Plus it’s hard to look at the actual implementation and if it is unaltered for 5 or 10 years and wonder how many genuinely talented people can make it through the intended psychologically oriented, highly visual and interactive K-12 planned ‘experience’.

  1. These hubristic evil doers ( The Real Evil Doers ) are emboldened at all levels now. Here is an example of how it works at the local level. The link I have attached is the CV a woman from UC San Diego’s oddly named: Center For Global California Studies.

    She is a local change agent in the San Diego area. She does not matter to most of us but she is an A21 driving force behind efforts in SD to make a land grab by connected developers to put up mixed use housing that will not ever be used ” For The People” in a boho hispanic area of the city. A good friend of mine is fighting tooth and nail to expose them for what they are. Its tough going. They lie. Lie. Lie. But they are not hiding their credentials anymore.

    “Her publications include “Introduction to Practice What You Teach: Activist Anthropology at the Sites of Cross-Talk and Cross-Fire,” New Proposals: Journal of Marxism and Interdisciplinary Inquiry, 2009; “A Reflection on Political Research and Social Justice Organizing,” New Proposals: Journal of Marxism and Interdisciplinary Inquiry, 2009″ … etc…….

    This is the org the woman is running to get plans to materialize.

    There are people like Annie Lorrie now in every city across the nation but San Diego is almost as far along now as Seattle. Of particular interest I thought was the type of individual she wants to see in leadership in Empower San Diego’s leadership council ( Council. Why don’t they just call it a soviet?)

    “Ideally, the applicants should be approximately 25-35, be finished (or
    nearly finished) with their education, and have at least some
    meaningful professional experience. While party lines are not a firm
    issue here, these individuals need to [be committed to promoting] a climate of progress.
    San Diego’s chapter has a goal of creating a deep bench of committed
    progressive leaders in San Diego.”

    Anyone can join. Just agree to the plan.

    • Mari-remember that San Diego is home to CHAT. When Michael Cole left NYC and his Rockefeller Foundation funding of CHAT (it’s described in Lois Holtzmann’s book as they worked together) he moved to San Diego.

      It’s also where David Christian migrated.

      Honestly it seems to me that anywhere the Longshoremen as a union was ever strong has been relatively easier to radicalize.

  2. Mr. Eubanks, I enjoy reading the articles on your site. It’s about the only source I have found that gives a comprehensive critique of this “Common Core” curriculum. With that in mind, I also read another blog which deals primarily with economics, but it contains an article called “SDR’s and Bretton Woods – Part Ten” which gets into the subject of education as it relates to the coming re-shaping of the global financial order. It is part of an ongoing and very intriguing series of articles. I think you would find very interesting. Here is the link:

  3. Robin,

    I just discovered your blog a few days ago but have already read a dozen or more of your posts. Let me just say that as a high school English teacher, and more importantly an outraged American, you are right on!

    You may have already stumbled across this in your impressive research but just incase it hasn’t surfaced yet, do a Google Books search for an important 1918 publication called “The Principles of Secondary Education” by Alexander James Inglis, an obscure but very influential educator after whom the Inglis Lectures at Harvard were named. It’s a long tome, but check out the section titled “The Functions of Secondary Education” on page 375.



    • Thanks Aaron and welcome to ISC. As a parent of one still in high school I was off on a fall break trip. My apologies for your being stuck in comment purgatory.

      • No worries. Your blog is opening my eyes to many different things. In 2010 I read the entire CCSS for English Language Arts, from pre-school to 12th grade in an ambitious effort to become an authority on what we were supposed to teach. After slogging through ambiguous sentence after incoherent sentence I could not for the life of me figure out why as an English teacher I didn’t understand what I had read. I was more confused than ever.

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