Creating the NSA Subjects of Tomorrow

“What kind of lesson does it teach our children if they’re chipped like cattle and their every movement tracked?” asks Jay Stanley, senior policy analyst with the ACLU’s Washington, D.C. office. “It doesn’t create the kind of independent, autonomous people that we want in our democratic society.”

It may not create the kind of independent, autonomous people that you want in “our” democratic society, but I imagine there are some people—like, the ones in power—who think this is exactly the kind of lesson “our” children should be learning.  Hence, the public school system.

Socratic Dialogue

The other day IOZ took some shots at the practice of compulsory, institutionalized education.  This brought out the usual progressive types, who invariably view opposition to tax-funded, federally mandated government schools as opposition to learning and teaching.

Anyhow, down in the comments section, one guy took exception to IOZ’s “anarchist position,” calling it “simply stupid,” before following up with this nice bit of self-contradiction:

The obvious way forward is radical expansion and improvement of the nation’s schools.

Alas, that’ll never reach the agenda, as its implications are way to dangerous to the status quo.

I responded:

It looks like you’re halfway to the anarchist position yourself. The problem with the public school system, aside from the fact that it’s compulsory, is that its purpose is to reinforce the status quo.

A little further down (there were other people taking the “anarchist” position) an anonymous commenter chimed in:

Fuck school. I want to live in a Cormac McCarthy novel like a real anarchist!

Unable to resist, I shot back:

Yes, because clearly the only thing standing between civilized society and a post-apocalyptic nightmare scenario is a compulsory “educational” system. Thank god for them public schools.

To which (presumably the same) Anonymous replied, with crushing, unanswerable logic:

You people are douchy.

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