Obscuring Coercive Control and the Active Society Launch: Heralding Lethal Arrows as Rays of Light

To appreciate just how much our beliefs guide our perceptions and actions, let’s assume that we know something is coming at us in the sky, but we cannot know precisely what until we are at risk. At that point it may be too late to duck or put on armor and use a shield. Safety requires we make assumptions beforehand. If we are fully armed, we risk deflecting truly helpful rays of light. If we believe nothing bad can happen, the lethal arrows can slay us while we remained unawares until the last moment. Perception matters, especially when the expressed desire is for wholesale social, economic, and political change without any recognition in time. To avoid timely and effective resistance, the architect for the global transformation blueprints to what was described in 1968 as the Active Society, sociology prof Amitai Etzioni, insisted on a need to “rely less on direct coercive control.”

Control needed to be indirect and out of sight and especially embedded in situations where its presence would be binding but unappreciated. I wrote Positive School Climate in the margin of the book at that point and administrators insisting that all classrooms use Restorative Justice Practices as part of an obligation to practice positive behavior tenets. It’s coercive and intended to control future behavior. Desired attitudes, values, and beliefs get practiced until they become unconscious Habits of Mind, but what parent would be tracking at this level? What lawyer would follow the statutes, regulations, orders, and case law declarations to figure out the binding template if they did not have a school district for a client or work in the public sector? It was a good plan, but what is created to be binding has threads that can be followed authoritatively.

To anyone who has ever called me a conspiracy theorist, I do not theorize, except in my kitchen when I am winging a recipe. I am, however, a very able Tracker of Openly Declared efforts at Colluding to use Political Power to bind people and places against their will to a vision of the future. Here we go again describing events that have occurred within the last week that have kicked the creation of the Active Society into high gear. Professor Etzioni wrote that the Active Society, in order to sell the necessary collectivism, would need a guiding vision. He asked “which creeds have sufficient transcendental force to overcome tribalism?” Tribalism had nothing to do with the Apache nor is it an excuse for a casino in a non-gambling state. Tribalism was a belief that the pertinent community to which a moral obligation of care and meeting needs was one’s family or at most the nation-state.

That was unacceptable during the height of the Cold War, when Professor Etzioni sought to make the moral community the entire globe–all of humanity. Education needed to become about creating values that would extend to “all men” and creating an authentic consensus around the need to act to create the desired transformations–locally, sub-nationally, nation-states, and then globally. This is the so-called Third Way superseding both capitalism and socialism and last week the transition began in earnest. For once, let’s move chronologically. On Thursday, October 22, the OECD released “Schooling Redesigned: Towards Innovative Learning Systems.” It launched with this rather graphic admission of transformative intent:

“In the past, education was about teaching people something. Now it is about making sure that individuals develop a reliable compass and the navigation skills to find their own way through an increasingly uncertain, volatile, and ambiguous world…how well education systems develop knowledge, skills, and capacities and of what kinds, is increasingly centre stage in public debate.”

I am not sure using duplicitous terms like Rigor, Higher Order Thinking Skills, Student Growth, or College and Career Ready is what I would call a center stage debate. I would call it an attempt to declare something to be the subject of consensus when it would not be at all if the true goals were accurately described. Remember that the useful Authentic Consensus can be as false as can be if the point is for defenses to be down as the lethal arrows approach. I cannot cover the whole report but number 6 of the 7 Learning Principles laid out for this vision of coordination among “global and local players” was to use assessments that had formative feedback mechanisms to create the desired knowledge, skills, capacities, and values. Number 7, by the way, was “promote horizontal connectedness across learning activities and subjects, in and out of school.”

That is one way to describe guiding the student’s perception of the real world and how it works. Let’s move to Friday’s news dump with the White House and fed ED announcing a November summit to redesign American high schools. That is the day after the OECD Redesign Schools paper and several weeks after UNESCO released, on September 29 just after the official approval of the Post-2015 agenda at the UN’s opening, a vision to guide the redesign of secondary schools globally. Called “Unleashing the Potential: Transforming Technical and Vocational Education and Training,” TVET in all schools and for all students “must be the master key that can alleviate poverty, promote peace, conserve the environment, improve the environment, improve the quality of life for all and help achieve sustainable development.”

TVET will go wonderfully with the WIOA federal legislation on July 2014 that no one still wants to talk about, even as the State Plans come due within the next several months. The required local workforce boards, development around sector strategies, and which groups are in line for special treatment also dovetails with the TVET/UNESCO vision. Probably not coincidental that UNESCO calls for A Shift in the Development Paradigm and cites Amartya Sen who in 1989 helped Amitai Etzioni found the Society for Advancing Socio-Economics going forward. Sen’s approach is declared to be the UN’s approach to rejecting the “economic and material view of development that dominated the past century.”

This more “holistic and humanistic view of development…presented human development as a process of enlarging people’s choices and enhancing human capabilities and freedoms.” One is not free, in this view, if one’s needs are not being met and this TVET reimagining of high schools and call for planned economic development is all about economic justice and social equity for all. Now it is Saturday, October 24, and fed ED has embargoed its Testing Action Plan for release at noon that day. Since I am pretty sure that timing was not to provide reading material for bored football fans with long drives ahead, it appears to have been timed to make it to the Sunday edition of the New York Times. The Times hyped it as directing states to stop overtesting.

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/campaign-k-12/Assessment%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf is the actual plan and as you can see, it calls for the very kind of formative assessment that the OECD laid out as the desired mandate for School Redesign two days earlier. The Plan, of course, also limits states from much testing of substantive knowledge anymore and thus prevents much chance of a well-stocked mind of the sort UNESCO began criticizing back in 1968 (two posts ago). How are these federal ‘guidelines’ for contextuating what must go on and doing it at the local level? Global mandates coming out of the UN and the OECD and being put into place by federal directives of what is desired, but unappreciated because of the slant of the news coverage even for those with some awareness.

I could say on Sunday the political authorities rested but apparently GEFF advisor Tom VanderArk was busy tweeting that a 2014 paper called “Accountability for college and career readiness: Developing a new paradigm” fit the fed’s Testing Action Plan perfectly. It, too, was all about formative assessment of meaningful learning (likely to guide perception and future behavior) and using activities that would help create the desired perceptions, knowledge, skills, values, and capacities that would create a likely motivation to act and act as  desired. These get called ambiguously assessments for learning. Notice that the fed’s action plan gives no parent any right to see all the data flowing from all these to be required formative assessments. Also notice that the NYT story I saw admitted that the Common Core initiative was really about specifying desired ‘skills.’

We are up to Monday, aren’t we? I was planning to write about all this dovetailing and how it fits with the launch of the Active Society and the reengineering via education of people to be the malleable desired systems yesterday. Then I discovered that October 26 was the opening in Paris of UNESCO’s Youth Summit to follow through on the “UNESCO Roadmap for Implementing the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development.” Another lost invite where we could have cruised the Seine. That Roadmap opened with this chilling confession of what is really intended:

“Political agreements, financial incentives, or technological solutions alone do not suffice to grapple with the challenges of sustainable development.. It will require a wholesale change in the way we think and we act–a rethink of how we relate to one another and how we interact with the ecosystems that support our lives.”

Now who needs to theorize about global conspiracies with these kind of explicit confessions?

I will cover the implications of what is going on this week in Paris in the next post.

In time hopefully for us to take precautions against what are clearly lethal arrows.


38 thoughts on “Obscuring Coercive Control and the Active Society Launch: Heralding Lethal Arrows as Rays of Light

  1. Moving forward again…..

    “The bipartisan, bicameral effort resulted in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, a commonsense solution to modernize and improve the federal workforce development system. The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act will help workers attain skills for 21st century jobs and cultivate the modern workforce that evolving American businesses need.

    “But we still have more work to do. By reauthorizing the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act, we have an opportunity to help more Americans – especially younger Americans – enter the workforce with the tools and knowledge necessary to compete for the high-skilled, in-demand jobs in our economy. Last reauthorized in 2006, the law provides federal support for state and local programs focused on preparing high school and community college students for technical careers.”


  2. A truly transparent wording of that UNESCO admission would read:

    “Political agreements, financial incentives, or technological solutions alone do not suffice to grapple with the challenges of (Controlling The Teeming Masses Of Useless Eaters ). It will require a wholesale change in the way (THEY) think and( THEY) act–a rethink of how ( THEY) relate to one another and how ( THEY) interact with the ecosystems that support OUR ( Authoritarian Overlords) lives.”

    • Make that well-compensated lives, exempt from income tax and with 30 days paid annual leave to start. http://centerforinterculturaldialogue.org/2014/11/12/unesco-job-ad-rapprochement-of-cultures/

      I put this on the other thread but make sure you read it http://www.agi.harvard.edu/projects/TeachingandAgency.pdf and appreciate what it is trying to force and how Ron Ferguson heading the Pathways to Prosperity initiative that also ties this change the child to TVET, Career Pathways, sector strategies, remake of high school and citing http://mindsetscholarsnetwork.org/ which Ferguson is also part of along with Carol Dweck and Angela Duckworth of Grit fame.

      If we click over to current initiatives and the National MIndset Study, there is the helpful confession that it’s all “about the brain’s ability to restructure itself.” If we look at the Mindset Knowledge Forum we find they are working closely with Carnegie. Remember Carnegie and the Rockefeller Foundation funded WOMP back in the early 70s in what appears to be the fulfillment of the Active Society vision. Carnegie also funded that Competency-based ed summit in 2011 that fed ED participated in.

      Everything is coming together now. Good time to reread Chapter 4 of my book.

      • “If we click over to current initiatives and the National MIndset Study, there is the helpful confession that it’s all “about the brain’s ability to restructure itself” well is that not what happens during abuse in children or young people such as MK stuff? Child abuse victims, trauma victims wall off suffering, and during developmental years causes fracturing. That is pretty well researched and documented. Now they have cleverly found ways to get it into schools. WOW!!!

    • Perhaps the writer is now involved with this No Test is Neutral initiative of NCTE. https://plus.google.com/events/cofhn9uvknm16huk36m9jho1rq0

      Writing Assessments, Equity, Ethics and Social Justice Did you notice that the ACS brief called for proportionality in outcomes? Heard that first at the School Justice summit three weeks ago and now it keeps recurring. Uses the civil rights laws to drive the non-academic emphasis.

      Here is the related Evidence for Equity https://plus.google.com/events/cl4ebjb3vnq6j9nbc4mtdj2qhh4 in Literacy.

      • This phrase was telling.
        “Align with ESEA and WIOA (where applicable) to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the
        education and workforce development programs”
        It seemed that they prefer that Wioa absorb perkins. Wioa being far superior in making sure there is no blocked path no matter the intellect, ability or dedication to hard work. The mention of credentials made me think of the webinar a few weeks back. There was a strong emphasis in that brief on driving interest toward the Core partners. There are so many issues with the tanf program. They assume individuals want to better themselves rather than live on assistance. We all know for many that is not the case.
        I know of a case where one family member does not contribute financially because they would loose assistance, and the assistance with a special mortgage program.
        Steering students in one direction toward a preselected group that will benefit just oozes of freedom doesn’t it? (Said with sarcasm)

        • You brought up the Equity lens, Alan Blankstein and Pedro Noguera have a new book out and are doing the circuit hyping what education through the lens of equity means. This is from their speaking this summer in Pennsylvania. http://www.geraldaungst.com/blog/2015/07/live-blog-courageous-leadership-noguera-blankstein/ and they are speaking on it at the ASCD annual meeting next April.

          Here is an excerpt from the book. http://corwin-connect.com/2015/02/excerpt-excellence-equity/

          When everything is said and done what Equity requires appears to dovetail with what WIOA laid out as the definition of workforce ready.

          We have an emerging, consistent vision here that everything with an ability to compel legally is pointing to. No politician wants to talk about it because it is so clearly Fascism and an intention to create a planned society. I do not believe they can build the desired society, but this agenda, if it continues unabated, will break down everything that works. Meantime virtually everyone in that ASCD audience believes they get to live their entire adult life at taxpayer expense in return for pushing Mind Arson and Personality Extermination.

          It is the ultimate in unsustainability.

          • Apparently these Excellence in Equity conferences have been going on all over the country with AASA sponsorship and fed ED’s involvement. http://etesummit.org/agenda/

            This is quietly forcing the real classroom implementation and it marries the polytech vision to creating the desired internalized image that SRI laid out.

            How many people understand this is what the civil rights laws are being interpreted to require just as Amitai Etzioni, UNESCO, and SRI all laid out in 1968 to fit with the desired collectivist, post-capitalist Active State and Planned Society.

            Oh wow. This has them speaking at the Harvard Club on achieving excellence through equity and mentions that Pedro Noguera has recently received an award from the omnipresent Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences for highlighting the application of the social and behavioral sciences to “pressing social issues.” http://www.the-cei.org/notes/cei-luncheon-series-alan-blankstein-and-pedro-noguera-to-speak-at-harvard-club-april-2nd/

            Same CASBS where Amitai Etzioni was when he wrote Active Society, where Daniel Bell was when he wrote The End of Ideology, where the systems sciences were first created, and where John Rawls developed hid Theory of Justice. It’s also where the creator of the term Excellence Mihaly Csiksentmihalyi was and he never went back to Chicago winters. Preferred California ever since. Was he at CASBS when he and Ervin Laszlo hatched GERG in the 80s–General Evolution Research Group?

            CASBS always comes up when what we are looking at is an attempt to impose Uncle Karl’s Human Development Model of little c communism on an unsuspecting West. Remember Etzioni thanks Ralph Tyler, who created CASBS with Ford Foundation funding, at the beginning of the Active Societybook for his help.

            And now CASBS is essentially thanking Pedro Noguera for his work in furthering their vision.

            I also have to confess that I went to college with one of the ETE speakers–Ann Clark. She was a year ahead of me, an English major, and Pres of the first all-girls eating house at davidson.

          • “Personality extermination” great description. Check out Pixar Disney new movie called Inside Out. Conditioning for this of which we speak showing up in a cartoon is mindblowing evidence. It is more like a horror movie to me. Seriously check out messaging in reviews…

      • And here is a real time anecdotal example of what this Equality looks like in the classroom of a current12th grader as we are all brought to heel. Let’s call her ” My Kid” .

        My Kid is in Latin V Honors. Lowest grade ever in her Latin Career since 8th grade has been 95.
        She took a quiz today in latin where they were asked to “Draw Pictures of the relevant translations to demonstrate they could translate.

        Yes. Pictures. To which ” My Kid” said to me “so great if you can figure out the word ‘crown’ you can draw the stupid crown and get credit. That is not translating! ”

        The students self graded said quizzes in class and then the teacher went around the classroom, all 7 students, and asked each kid how many they got right out of 10. The results ranged from 5 correct to 9.5. Most students got 8 answers right.

        Latin teacher skipped over ‘My Kid’ because he does not like that she knows her Latin forwards and backwards and he did not ask her what her result was. At the end of class ‘My Kid’ noted that he still had not asked her quiz result.

        She stated this to him Sotto Voce so as not to draw attention because she did not want to make a scene. He replied , ” Oh you got 8 out of 10 like everyone else.”

        To which she answered , ” No I got 9.5 out of 10.”
        He was not pleased to have his leveling thwarted.

        • Have you had her read the short story “Harrison Bergeron” yet?

          I did that years ago when a middle school principal went into levelling mode. She was the nitwit who came in, changed the criteria for honor roll dramatically without notice (downwards), and told the parents in a meeting that she was in an Ed Doctorate program and that “we now know that what you feel is as important as what you know.”

          • You know, I just re read it, and Now is the time to pass it along to her. Thanks for the reminder.

            As My Kid recounted this story today I immediately flashed back to your wise words of some two years ago where you warned that this stage of transformation would be the most painful for the brightest and most earnest students.

          • The Handicapper-General, Diana Moon Clampers character from Harrison Bergeron looks and sounds exactly like Shirley McCune in my minds eye.

          • This came out yesterday https://cdn.americanprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/30051800/StandardsAlignment.pdf to “foster a cultural shift that aligns supports for children’s development across the birth to third-grade spectrum.” My bolding Standards for Nonacademic Skills listed ‘sharing’ as the first example of a social and emotional skill that is needed, then ‘self-control’ and finally “building relationships with peers and adults.”

            The co-author is a JD/MA Education candidate for a 2016 graduation from George Washington where Amitai Etzioni went to become a prof to further his Active Society vision from a DC platform instead of NYC. I will cover his intention to use education to create the needed “authentic consensus”. A required emphasis on SEL helps too, especially if we note changes to what constitutes “school readiness” since the National Educational Goals Panel (to which Richard Riley, Diane Ravitch, and Lamar Alexander are all linked and also Chester Finn I believe). The five 1995 domains are listed and I have put the June 2015 changes via the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Frameworks in bolding if added and brackets if taken out. Notice the targeting now of perception, also essential to that creation of “authentic consensus”.

            1) Perceptual, physical, and motor development
            2) Social and emotional development
            3) Approaches toward learning
            4) Language and Literacy Development
            5) Cognition [and general knowledge]

            Interesting, huh?, especially when we remember the UN’s Literacy work and rather unique new definition is all about contextual awareness just like we covered in this post because Etzioni said contextuating orientations were crucial to the development of authentic consensus. Remember Amartya Sen helped Etzioni create SASE–the Society to Advance Socio-Economics in 1989, that pivotal year. Sen won the Nobel for his Economics work grounded in Human Development and works with Martha Nussbaum on the global Human Capacity movement. Both are cited in that Goettingen interview in connection with their links to the UN’s WIDER Institute in Finland. Sen’s work is also crucial and used to be cited explicitly (before I wrote about it) in the Educational Leadership Framework on what the Doctorate in Educational Leadership was intended to advance.

            I think the Resolution “to establish a national Children’s Bill of Rights” that was introduced in the House on October 9 fits in with the above discussion, I mean, context. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-114hres476ih/pdf/BILLS-114hres476ih.pdf

  3. Convergence Of Mindsets

    Here’s another in the series of “unleashing” books, articles, mandates . . .

    Mathematical Mindsets: Unleashing Students’ Potential through Creative Math, Inspiring Messages and Innovative Teaching, by Jo Boaler (Author), Carol Dweck (Foreword)

    As with the UNESCO “Unleashing the Potential – Transforming Technical and Vocational Education and Training” will this new (available Nov1’15) contribution also promise to “alleviate poverty, promote peace, conserve the environment, improve the quality of life for all and help achieve sustainable development” ?

    • ‘Mathematical Mindsets’ fits right in with the increasingly vocational and activity oriented focus of high school for all students. http://www.clasp.org/resources-and-publications/publication-1/2015.10.28_PerkinsJointComments_CLASPJFFNew-America.pdf is a brief from CLASP, Jobs for the Future, and the New America Foundation to tie Perkins into state’s wioa required plans and state and local required workforce boards.

      Although the language talks about those who desire career Pathways Georgia’s state legislation that no one wanted to mention had passed foists career pathways on all students without a traditional academics option. Likewise, civil rights laws will be used to prevent different programs as a denial of “equality of opportunity.” Those NCTE links I put up this morning and the language of the School Justice Summit are very clear on that.

      Everything fits with the full implementation of unesco and the broader UN agenda without saying it explicitly. Beauty of stressing the local as that summit in Boston also disingenuously did.

  4. levels safe for the our children, grandchildren and all life on earth.

    “We envision a future with enlightened social, political and economic systems prioritizing renewable energy use and increasing energy efficiency while creating quality family-wage jobs in building a fossil-free economy; where low-income communities are no longer disproportionately suffering the effects of climate change; and where sustaining life and the needs of communities take precedence over corporate profits, leading to a healthy world with thriving and resilient communities.”

    Sound familiar? The group is involved with local Rethinking Schools Project, and Howard Zinn. Also with Zinn is Hagopian a frequent activist with UOO and NPE. When I searched Haogopian, and Etzioni this book came up.


    • Speth is involved with the Democracy Collaborative with Gar Alperowitz. CAGW was the second of the false narratives of the Tripod. Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral Development that the Chinese now push as a required Universal Love ethic and that they imposed on Hong Kong via citizenship education frameworks is the third leg.

      Notice that the green energy push not only requires a planned economy but it also has us economically neutering ourselves while the countries sponsoring the Rapprochement of Cultures I just wrote about do well. Also helps Russia and its allies.

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