Finale of the Dangerous Mindset Trilogy: Spreading the Contagion to Fundamentally Alter How We Think and Live

How many of you read the comment this past week by Christiana Figueres, head of the UN’s Framework on Climate Change, on how much easier it is for a dictatorship like China to do what the UN insists is necessary to deal with climate change? Many people wondered where the mental governor was that would have prevented such a politically inept statement, but immersion in the taxpayer-funded institutions seeking wholesale transformation globally seems to make the people involved tone-deaf about the ramifications and validity of what they are advocating for. The same directness about intentions and acceptable methods can be found in the related 50+20 Agenda of Management Education for the World. Let’s take a look at the future being envisioned by the current K-12 and college “reforms” so that we can become the “content, unified” people who are “ultimately cooperative” in a “well-organized civilization working towards the singular goal of sustainability.”

We can see where the jet-setting bureaucrats could begin to believe they are entitled to strong arm people into new sets of values and morals and beliefs. After all they have decided they are working toward a “world worth living in.” One that of course benefits them instead of us, but then we are not supposed to read the small print. With 12 years or so of obuchenie ‘teaching and learning’ and ‘guided reflection’, even if future graduates do read the small print, few will appreciate what is wrong with such intentions.

“Everything within the State” as a motto of a very dark period in World History simply won’t be part of the syllabus of coursework or approved, pre-supplied Enduring Understandings. This time there will be the collaboratory of leaders working together with all stakeholders to ‘solve’ the world’s complex problems as they arise and plan the future. If things do not turn out as envisioned, adjustments can be made. It’s not like such a history-blind approach would be squandering national resources or committing permanent Mind Arson or anything.

In case you don’t recognize the significance of same of the names quoted in that report, they include Peter Senge’s Society for Organizational Learning-SOL-and his long-time collaborator Otto Scharmer (who has his own tag plus his Capitalism 3.0 tag). We also have Howard Gardner of Multiple Intelligences and Harvard’s Project Zero and Joseph Stiglitz who took part in Anthony Gidden’s Global Third Way Debate book and panel that we have looked at as well as heading the Subjective Well-Being (also tagged) panel that commenced in 2009 at French President Nicholas Sarkozy’s request. So please don’t tell me that this vision is unrelated to the so-called Great Transition or that the transformative learning described is not related to the US Common Core or the Australian Core Skills or the Canadian Learning for a Sustainable Future. It’s all the same interconnected ‘transdisciplinary’ vision and we will remain imperiled until we begin to realize this better.

There’s a Goethe expression that keeps being quoted as part of this transformative vision. It goes “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.” We also need to take it to heart before deliberately kept ignorant credentialed Change Agents, and business professors who don’t understand how economies work, and self-interested politicians and their cronies and consultants blow up what currently works.  We saw numerous well-compensated false statements in out last post, and PRME quoting, with pictures, George Bernard Shaw’s statement that “We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future” suggests we need to keep our Ignoramus alert gauges firmly in our hands at all times in 2014.

If K-12 education reforms like the Common Core or blended learning or the college tour at that expensive Ivy League school confessed that the “time has come to initiate a fundamental change in the way we think and live,” the alarm bells that need to be going off now would start to peal in more people’s minds. And they would properly keep their wallets shut. Which is precisely why no one in school or higher ed administration or the public sector is being that honest. We have to rely on sleuthing like those Great Transition documents or unwise declarations like Giddens conceding that actual temperature changes do not really matter, it’s just all an excuse for desired social, political, and economic changes in the West. The “Management Education for the World: An Agenda” report is much the same way. Because it is linked but tangential to the area of most people’s focus, its authors are brutally honest about the entire picture.

Making the purpose of K-12 being ‘Career-Ready’ takes on new meaning if management education globally has been simultaneously tasked with the “transformation of business and the economy” so that it serves what the politicians and planners in academia and think-tanks determine to be “serving the common good.” No more relying on consumers and individual choices. It rather puts a new light on selling K-12 education reforms as “What Business Wants” when those businesses have been told they get to be established players “in a new kind of society” with “a revised economic framework where business is celebrated for its contribution to society and the world.”

I will take a break in this quote as we think about how dangerous it is to have management students trying to earn degrees and get jobs in business or governments being told they are to “become custodians of society.” [italics here and elsewhere are in original report] It will be quite flattering to a twenty-something ego, but oh-so-dangerous to the rest of us for them to be trained and believe that is their acceptable 21st century role.

Especially when we realize how few will have enough knowledge of history to know what Fascism looks like, what its dangers are, and why people wrote about ‘vampire economies’ in the 30s. This is the rest of the quote that I broke from (top of page 6). Please pay attention because we have to be the ones who recognize all this for the self-interested, rent-seeking, parasitic justifying nonsense that it is. This is not a minor report.

“The starting point for reframing business is to reassign economics to its appropriate status as a subset of a larger system, not its center. We must develop a global society that is supported by the economy, based on a new environmental, societal and economic framework that serves the global common good. Businesses need to become intimately involved in this transformation by accepting challenges and responsibilities that lie beyond short-term economic performance. The purpose of business should be measured through its positive contribution to the transformation of society towards a better world.”

So the envisioned purpose of business in the future is to no longer satisfy customers making voluntary decisions on how to spend their own money. It will be about satisfying the politicians and bureaucrats like Ms Figueres who get to decide what they believe would be a better world based on a misguided fallacy that economies are a finite collection of goods and resources that can simply be rearranged. It is hardly a shock to those of us who have been tracking all the machinations in education over the decades, and the layers of deceit to hide the actual objectives, that the key to all these sought changes is transformative learning. This requires an awareness of the viewpoints of others and how to change our own beliefs, values, and ethics and proceed with action even in the face of uncertainty. “Achieving such awareness” says the report “requires a fundamentally different approach to teaching and learning.”

There’s that obuchenie reference again where we began our trilogy. Essential to what is sought is always “the process of perspective transformation, enabling individuals to revise their beliefs and modify their behavior. We understand transformative learning not only as a rational or intellectual exercise but fundamentally consider personal experience as a critical enabler to trigger a transformation in the participant. Such learning is embedded in the philosophy of whole person learning: respecting a person in their mental, emotional, physical and spiritual dimensions, and recognizing the need to develop all these aspects of the individual in order to progress towards an increasingly integrated and therefore ‘whole’ person.”

Now let’s end this with some of the names in K-12 education for just that very aim that we have covered on this blog. Assagioli called it psychosynthesis. Carol Dweck is doing CCSSI professional development webinars calling it Growth Mindsets. ASCD has a Whole Child Initiative that it wishes to be an essential component of the Common Core implementation. Personal experience is also the project-based learning being pushed now or hands-on science. References to head, heart, hands, and soul are rampant in the rhetoric being used by Superintendents. We called it Triune Consciousness in our League of Innovative Schools research.

Transformative learning and perspective transformation are the real purpose of the K-12 reforms as well as college. It attaches to the same planned alteration of business and the economy as what the 50+20 report describes.

No wonder we have legislators travelling around states bragging about the collusion going on between politicians and education administrators to promote this vision. They would have probably been more careful if they knew we had the rest of the story.


20 thoughts on “Finale of the Dangerous Mindset Trilogy: Spreading the Contagion to Fundamentally Alter How We Think and Live

  1. Ayers pushes the education based on personal experience. Teacher’s in the hood should bring the hood into class and reenforce the “man is keeping us down” mantra, no need for real lessons. Since when did inner city kids deserve a real education, according to them. Convincing parents of this is difficult, insisting they remove their children today, well, I am met with a miriad of excuses. One guy said, I’d like to get inside the heads of these people. Get inside the head of the devil? They hate you and want you dead, you are a carbon shell to them, fertilizer.

    • All of the Common Core implementation documents push the personal experience angle. If not by calling it experiential learning or PBL-problem-based or project-based as High Tech High touts it (at (co)lab, Tony Wagner showed excerpts of a film he is doing pushing High Tech High. It is also tied to the League of Innovative Schools.

      Otherwise the experiential angle lurks in the requirement work be “relevant” and “authentic, real-world situations.”

      Sorry your comment got lost. My spam filter has been acting up recently. It put my response to Kyrie in spam yesterday. Yikes!

  2. Takes One To Know One

    While New Age education (Common Core, Personalized Learning, 21st Century Skills, etc) is plainly being forced into place — in many places internationally and in tandem — it may not actually become embedded and irreversible as intended.

    Way too many people are starting to wake up and challenge not only the premeditated results of this project, but also the means. Just looking at the methods tells you something questionable is being sneaked in. When Sandra Stotsky, an original member of CC Validation Committee, calls the process “Rather Shady”— that says a lot. 70+ comments

    A professor at Hillsdale College, Terrance Moore, says that teachers presenting common core scripts are “‘instructed’ to teach that “all right wing extremist groups are fascist”. Here is a video of Prof Moore 660+ comments
    And note that he identifies three different kinds of “progressives” in education. His recent book, The Story-Killers: A Common-Sense Case Against the Common Core, I’m glad to note, is recorded by as being purchased alongside “Credentialed to Destroy”.

    So, if “Fascism” is not to be taught as part of history, it will still be part of the vocabulary if CC pushers are calling their opponents “fascist”. Won’t curious students still want to look up commonly used words? And won’t young people want to check, at least with their parents and grandparents, if name-calling is not part of these “old-fashioned” sayings: “The pot calling the kettle black”, or “It takes one to know one” ?

    • Tunya-

      I have a book from the 30s written by a Christian Science Monitor reporter who was based in both Moscow and Berlin. His insights into the nature of Fascism and where it fits as a form of collectivism are so helpful because he did not know where it all led. He only saw where he thought it was leading and he was very prescient. I will use it soon so we can all spot the elements without looking for emblems or a certain type of salute.

      Similarly to what I put in the book, it always comes down to controlling the prevailing consciousness.

      I saw where Professor Moore spoke in Gainesville, Georgia recently. Me? I was driving my youngest to after school activities.

      • CSM is a publication by the bankers. The new morales come from them through common core, tax laws and tyranny will replace the ten commandments and the golden rule. They invented communism and the freedom movements. See Capitalist Conspiracy on you tube or all wars are bankers wars. I was obsessed with figuring our how they will change the morals for a time so I read all the global ethics junk, much of which is out of the Economist and CSM, both global bankers publications, the same ones behind Common Core. Rockefeller’s, Carnagie etc.

    • The Sandra Stotsky speech is good. She’s the ELA expert on the CC Validation Committee, same as Milgram was the math expert. Both of their subject area experts fail to endorse the common core. But they were outvoted by, apparently, a bunch of people with only education degrees.

  3. Ignoramus alert gauges, good one. In the 50+20 videos I noticed they all had nifty matching scarves. Those that are imagining this brilliant peaceful global bliss just do not live in reality. I can’t help thinking are these people for real? “A new economic framework” wonderful, just wonderful. When will the lines for bread begin?

    • That made me think of an article on AmericanThinker today written by a former Russian:

      Every once in a while I get to thinking that surely it wouldn’t be as bad as we think. That surely nobody could be made to think that way here. Then you read something from a former Soviet telling about what they are seeing happening on the streets of the USA.

      Another statement he made was regarding who got to progress into the good jobs in the Soviet Union. The people who could regurgitate the party line the best and with the most enthusiasm! For CC, who would get the best scores and what would be waiting for those that didn’t follow the “party line”?

      • Mike-I have a friend who grew up behind the Iron Curtain. The first time I related the story I was finding in American education (this was while I was writing the book) she cried. The idea that I could describe something I had found from the expressed intentions but she had lived through took her back to her childhood.

        Remember we are dealing with alternative assessments here now with the Common Core. They are scored on how you respond to ambiguous non-linear situations and which concepts you apply to Indeterminate Situations.

        Also I do not want what is intended to be fully implemented. It’s why I write. Most people pushing this do not know the full story. They simply push was they are told to push because it is personally lucrative to them. It’s like the School Governance Plan to be implemented in the high school over the next 3 years. I recognized all 6 of the tenets. I doubt if the Principal, Area Super, or $2500 a day consultant do, but it’s what they have been told to push. It brings in the next lucrative raise or contract. That’s how it works. They have no need to know the underlying theories or their history. As I said we taxpayers are going to have to be the ones who protect ourselves and our children from the Predatory State determined to assume the dominant decision-making power in society. Separating knowledge from power never works out well. Neither does separating authority from ultimate responsibility for the down side of the decisions.

      • Do you find it increasingly common that our children are encouraged to create alternate worlds and Governments and recreate history? I am all for using your imagination, but let’s learn reality first shall we. When sending your child to school having his or her head in a video game during the day is not most parents idea of learning. We are evaluating the children by new assessments, gaming assessments, and now possible mental health assessments in NY. How much more do they need to monitor the changes? This article reminded me that I had read a couple of papers about stealth assessments in games, in particular it mentioned Elder Scrolls.

        • Yes and that is a huge component of what I am seeing Harvard’s Project Zero push which is why having Howard Gardner in the PRME doc was so crucial. Jane McGonnigal brags about it in her book I wrote a post about before she was the keynoter at the ICTE conference.

          Facing History, which I wrote a very troubling post about in December 2012, is actually classified as a character development curriculum. As I said when I wrote that post, few things are more dangerous than misrepresenting the causes of the Holocaust.

          Those are two excellent links. Not news to me, but helpful declarations of the extent to which assessing the Whole Child’s belief and perceptual and character traits is what is desired. There’s also a reference to freeing up the teacher’s time so they can focus on the student’s learning that seemed to be envisioning keeping student’s on the desired Big Ideas/Desired Metaphorical Lenses Pathway.

          Remember the first link’s interest in flow is Mihalyi Csiksentmihalyi’s work. He has a tag and it is his concept of excellence-combining what a students believes, feels, wants, and thinks in a single impulse-that guides ed reforms. It also describes the transformative learning and perspective transformation in the pRME document.

      • It was a social studies teacher.

        Schools would be better if they eliminated social studies and substituted anything else. Basketweaving. Basketball. Gum chewing.

        When they start calling it “history” then it has some value. Until then it’s just mind arson.

  4. ” I see from this link that the Common Core intends to push students to regard all “right wing extremist groups” with it doing the assigning as fascists.”

    This assignment of right wing extremist groups as Fascistic is something I think about often. I am reminded that the Left/Right political spectrum that we are taught to subscribe to as inviolate is IMHO baloney. We are taught that Extreme Left is Socialism and Extreme Right is Fascism roughly.

    Nonsense. Both false ‘sides’ are authoritarian. A more accurate spectrum would show Socialism, Fascism, Communitarianism on the left and Anarchy on the right with limited government or Minarchy just to the left of Anarchy.

    The Progressive (Regressive) radical ed reformers look to me to be fully on board with the ideas of the Fabian gradualists that Socialism is inevitable. So it suits their agenda of course to label anything Right of left as Fascist, never mind the fact that in practice fascist governments and Socialist governments practice the Dirigiste model of running an economy equally well.

    What I see happening in our culture generally and within the school system specifically is a manipulation of the idea that somehow Matriarchal values will save us all from Dreaded Patriarchy. If you watch what is happening at the moment is that the False Left -Big Mother, Social Justice movement and anything Eco friendly is being used as a counter narrative to the False Right NSA Big Daddy narrative.

    The controlling Right promises safety and protection in exchange for your freedom and the controlling Left promises love and kindness and unicorn rides in exchange for your freedom.

    People are being encouraged to embrace the great loving Pachamama as an antidote to the Restricting Right. What they are failing to see is that either “side” wants people to give up their individual sovereignty to the common good.

    Obviously, this is what is being taught in schools. I think one of the ways we parents can help counteract this manipulation is by pointing out that ANY government, organization or system that seeks custodianship of the individual in the name of good will and love should be approached with skepticism. If not ignored entirely.

    • Mari-

      I mentioned in the post that Stiglitz was part of Anthony Giddens Global Third Way conference advocating just as you said. So was the head of the Fabians.

      There is a tendency to see the Fabian vision as something Beatrice Webb and hubby were up to 80 years ago, not a contemporary entity still hoping to achieve its vision. These ideas did not go away when the Berlin Wall fell. They are just not properly understood now. It’s quite deliberate and let’s a historic philosophy with a notorious reputation be used to taint those opposing its 21st century implementation.

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