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fileschoollibrary.JPGIf you are reading this, or if you have been following this thread of posts, chances are you get exactly how broken the current public education model is.  Understand that when I ask- who will fix the broken system.. I never meant.. fix the public school system.  I meant, literally- how we educate our children.  I don’t know that there is any fixing the good ship titanic of education.  It is far too entrenched, and as noted, painting a house whose foundation is rotted and sinking.  No one is looking at the basement/ foundation- and praising the pretty new colours on the walls.


My reason for writing this series– is to create the dialogue, about the importance of including the creative/ non-linear, human-spiritual–ecological aspects and connections.  Without that.. the rest of educational reform is just window dressing and fresh paint.  Here’s a question that hit me this morning:  if school is soooo great and wonderful and the system has created such an amazing learning environment… why aren’t kids thrilled to be there, happy, healthy, and fully engaged- even over-coming their external life circumstances in the drive and hunger to learn and be part of it?


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Historically, Education was a privilege.  It was also elective.  Many   parents on farms, gave their children basic instruction on reading and   writing, and arithmetic.

At what point, did education shift from a right, to an enforced obligation? who came up with that brilliant idea?

Should education be required?  What if it wasn’t?


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dreamstimefree_1033121.jpgHere’s really good question on the failed-state of Education- who can initiate that change?


I imagine that it will emerge organically, by those for whom the system has failed.


Home schooling- may be one place where change will emerge.  I think it used to be that most parents chose to home school for religious reasons ( which is their choice, and fine).  I think more and more, parents are choosing to home school for a wider range of reasons:  The quality and approach to public education, the lack of holistic approach and the watering down of curriculum- placing standardised testing and social conformity over actual learning and critical thinking.


With far greater access to information, and the innovation of new technologies- no child is lacking, for being in the home-schooled environment.  Many colleges even have their lectures available to the public via satellite tv ( I miss that about my satellite, UCTV is great)… and I believe it is also available via website.


In other words- information is flowing.  Once upon a time,  a teacher was the sole arbiter of information… much the way the Catholic Priest stood between parishioners and God/damnation.. The teacher stood between the student and the knowledge. That is simply no longer true. In fact, the kids often have far more access to the information than their teachers- being more tech-savvy than ever their teachers could hope to become.


Early colleges may be another combined solution.  While I am not a huge fan of AP classes and online-distance learning within the HS setting ( note the HS IS the problem).. I think that more kids could be accelerated more quickly than they are.  BTW- check out the book “My Ishmail.”  Very eye-opening and thought-provoking discussion of the nature of public education.


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dreamstimefree_Aapple.JPGI was just chatting about the educational system.  Someone noted that this is not anything new– the failed-state of education.  It was failed a long time ago.. yep! Absolutely! it is like people in a house that should be condemned, moving the furniture around.. thinking that will improve circumstances.. and then they serve tea and cakes:)


Nope- definitely not new.  but somehow it seems to be getting swept under the carpet a lot. Esp around the whole NCLB and testing/ competencies.  you know who the testing benefits the most…? the corporations that produce the tests!


It never ceases to amaze me, whether it is schools, or national politics etc.. how blindly people will remain loyal to the sinking ship… it is a failed system for today’s needs.  period.  The model was developed to create functional workers who would then have a job for life, on the assembly line in manufacturing.  THAT is the energetic paradigm. That economic model.  It’s DEAD! ..


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dreamstimefree_apple-book.JPGI remember when I did my masters… we had one aspect where they wanted us to explore best practices in education, visit top models and talk to the experts… I noted 2 things.. 1- I was NOT going to go look at the best model of a failed system.. instead, I went to a place where kids had succeeded beyond expectations…


and 2.. gasp and shock.. I talked to the experts.. you know.. the kids! imagine that…


Kids are far more aware and savvy than teachers and schools give them credit for- and you’d be amazed at how much they will share when they know you are actually listening and not paying lip service.


btw- the school I visited for my Masters project was Simon’s Rock in Mass. It is/ was the first early college model in the country. Students usually enroll after tenth grade, and complete their associates degree and receive a High School diploma at that same time. Note that this is an actual college, with professors teaching from some of the most prestigious universities around the country. When I asked a History Professor if she had to scale her curriculum because she was working with younger students. She noted that she did. BUT, it was scaled UP. She noted that the younger students challenged her far more than students from an ivy league school where she had taught previously. Imagine that!


Now, lest anyone think this is a cherry-picked population and that they were privileged or highly gifted learners.. they might have been.. but what follows can readily refute and prejudice against the fullest potential of younger scholars…


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I was just reading a blog response to an article on student loans.  Student loans seem to be the only debt/ loan type that cannot, EVER, be discharged.


From what I have always understood, most debts expire after a certain amount of time, if left unpaid.  don’t pay a credit card, after 7 years… I believe.. they can no longer expect payment.  However, on student loans there is NO statute of limitations.  They do not expire, ever. What does that say about the equity of type-of-debt… run up a credit card, default.  Put if off long enough, you’re off the hook.  But you can never be equally off the hook with a student loan.


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A government is, and represents a contract between itself/ its rulers  and the people it governs.This contract is so sacred that the documents  that represent this, are often enshrined and guarded.  the Declaration  of Independence and the US Constitution are perfect examples of this. So  potent are they, that they are kept in glass cases and placed on  display for all to see.



Recently, many Americans have been rising up in protest.  They are  occupying scores of locations across the country.  Up until recently  there has been little coverage of this. WE owe a debt of gratitude to  the women who were pepper-sprayed, and the millions of online users who  made that video viral. If not for that video spreading far and wide  across the internet- mainstream news media could have continued to  ignore the most important political grassroots civic movement of the  last 50 years.  And still, it seems, much of America is at a loss to  fully understand the motivation for this movement. Why have we taken to  the streets and set up camps in our cities’ parks?




I currently have an intern staying with me.  She has just graduated  from college.a progressive and liberal college.  Yet in speaking with  her about these powerful events that are going on, RIGHT NOW, there  seems little connection or interest in the bigger picture. I will admit  to being somewhat baffled by the lack of information, interest and  awareness. I have been following these events- not rabidly, but at least  with enough attention to understand events, developments and  significance.  I know there are students and adults alike- so I am not  inferring this is an age-related discrepancy.


Additionally, I don’t take this as a fault in the person.  I take  this as the fault of a beautifully constructed system- that has removed  any neural connection between cause and effect.  There is no Aha,  between a concrete situation, and an abstract reality.


This intern is someone who is educated, seems to work well and would  like to have a meaningful job.  and yet if asked about what is going on  regarding Occupy Wall street, a slightly blank and confused look crosses  her young and idealistic face.  Has she followed any of it?  Does she  know what it is, or WHY people are doing this?  Is she aware of any of  the democratic and constitutional travesties that are taking place? More  so, that the people who are there, are there for HER.  For her and  every other young American that shares her plight.


Is she aware there IS a plight? I don’t know.  I will assume it is in  the common source of information that we have a huge jobs shortage, and  an imploding economy.  But what connection is made between the American  dream/ illusion that she was fed, and the reality of job-hunting with a  college degree? How have we come to a place where the outcomes of our  sporting events elicit greater interest, knowledge and passion, than the  reality of the American economic crisis? Our educational system is  failing, our jobs have fled the country, and our spending on military  disasters has spiraled out of control. As heinous as these realities  are- the slide into a police state should be most frightening of all.


Granted, I will absolutely allow that I was no more politically savvy  at 22.  I had nominal interest in world events, or even domestic  events.  There is one HUGE caveat though.  I was born into an generation  when being a college graduate opened doors of opportunity.  I had the  chance to pursue my goals and personal dreams with a level of confidence  that today’s graduates will not share.


How we have come to this point is extremely complex and convoluted.  The exact reasons can and will be debated by economists, activists and  intellectuals long after things have resolved themselves.


Where do we go from here? and Why does it matter?  Those are the  important questions.  How do we reclaim civil liberties and rights?  How  does the graduating college student reclaim the “American Dream” and  have a chance to build a future they are not ashamed of owning?




THAT is why the people who are occupying Wall Street, and Kstreet and  scores of other major cities around the country and around the world,  are gathering. the social contract has been usurped by corporations and  bought-and-paid politicians.  granted, they are bought BY the  corporations and large banks who have profit-motivated interests that  have NOTHING to do with the vanished middle class and NOTHING to do with  sustaining the health of ANYTHING except bottom line profit: the  planet, simply a resource to be exploited, as is the worker and all the  machinery of the system. Large banks? EVERYTHING, and everyone- is a  commodity, t be bought traded and sold- maximising immediate profit at  the expense of long term economic or social health.




a few points I think are relevant.




If we are going to go to war over oil ( face it- these wars are  ultimately over global resources, opening new markets and free-market  exploitation of workers and resources. see above:).  BUT, if our  children are dying for it, and blood is being spilt to gain it.  The  profit should NOT be going into the deep pockets of private companies.  In short- we are giving OUR life-blood so corporations can make  BILLIONS, quarterly and annually.  this is morally and ethically just  plain wrong.


Health- no one should have the right to make exorbitant profits over  the life and death of our citizens. this reduces human LIFE, to a  commodity that is bought, traded and sold- again, with no consideration,  ultimately, for the life in the balance.  That life, is simply a  commodity, a THING.  It is not a thing!  it is your child, your sibling  or your parent!




It comes down to- WHO matters more in a society?


For starters- I don’t think ANY person will have relevance in this  landscape, until the ghosts have been removed.  By ghosts- I mean the  shadow-”people”.. entities that have been “born,” have gotten very  educated, and even spawn “children.” But these are legal entities that  have never breathed the air, tasted the apple pie or held a baby in  their arms, wondering if the living soul in their arms will have a  better life and a chance to see how wonderful this planet can be.


These shadow-people, are the corporations legal personhood status.   this means that these non-beings, experience all of the rights of any  born person.  However, they are immortal, and not constrained by any  biological or ethical constraints. There are no true social mores  holding their baser instincts in check. these shadow-people cannot be  held accountable.  Their names seem to be “not me” ” I dunno” and ”  don’t know.” there is no intrinsic empathy hardwired into them.  They do  not show up at your door when your roof needs rebuilding, hammer at the  ready.  We have been led to think of them as caring and compassionate  through media constructs.  But there IS no man behind the curtain.   There IS no one ultimately responsible or accountable.




Ultimately, a corporation consists of the people who work there, or  own it.  THEY should be the ones bearing the responsibility.  NOT  offshore corporations and holdings, dummy corporations and shell  companies that often, cannot even be traced to an actual person.


Why are we sharing all of the constitutional rights and protections  with someone who will NEVER breathe the free air or feel the rain  leaking through the roof?


1. remove corporate personhood.  Until this happens, and there is  true corporate responsibility and accountability ( you sign it, your ***  is on the line)- there will be no true change in the WAY business is  done. Too many faceless robber-barons are hiding behind invisible  corporations and dummy corporations and holding companies to ever  successfully hold big business accountable for its actions and  indiscretions.




As an aside note from corporatocracy- Each state should have the  right, and should implement, the creation of a State owned bank.   citizens could freely choose whether to place their money in a state  owned bank, or a private corporate owned bank. State banks, would be  able to put funds back into the state, rebuilding infrastructure,  creating jobs and taking care of the people living within its borders,  health, education, and social spending.  If a bank had to make a profit  with my funds- I certainly would prefer that profit went to my  communities.


2. Implement state banks- that can compete with privately owned  banks, much the way N. Dakota(?) has done.  It is one state that now has  the lowest unemployment and probably strongest economy.  If a bank is  going to be about making a profit- people should have the option about  where that profit gets re-invested.  I for one- would like to see  interest in Vermont.




I do believe there are two sides to every contract.  It is up to the  American people, and the peoples all around the world- to assume  ownership and responsibility for themselves.  the first and foremost  question each person needs to be asking:  What do I need to know?  What  can I do for myself? What can I change?  This is in relation to  education, personal health, and environmental stewardship. We have HUGE  power, if only we realise this truth.  We have abundant resources, IF we  know what they are, and what is available to us.  And we DO have access  to information and human resources- as a result of internet access and  widespread use of cellular telephones.  HELP is within reach.  MORE- the  awareness that there are MANY others and this is NOT a slow solitary  march.  As Occupy Wall Street demonstrates- it was “we the people,” who  built the United States. It is, again, ” We the people,” who can and  will come together and fix the damage that “they the politicians and  corporations” have inflicted on the heart and soul of its people.


images from please visit their site and show  your support. read their stories- it is also YOUR story that they are  creating and telling for all of us, collectively.  OWS is a story, by  us, about us, for us.  All of us whom belong to the 99%.

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Member since: Dec 25, 2009

This is where I am posting excerpts from my books and writings. Some are complete- often, things I am currently working on, in progress:) Spiritual, metaphysical, horse-related... wherever the keyboard goes whither with or without my consent;)

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