by Michael Krieger, Liberty Blitzkrieg:
Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned.
– Mark Twain
As a father of two young children, my thoughts have increasingly started to center around their young lives and the future world they’ll inhabit. Such considerations quickly lead to stressful questions such as, what are the best schools in the area? Which option can provide the best environment in which to thrive? If the best options aren’t public, can we afford them? Is it worth the money? All these questions and more have filled the minds of my wife and I over the past couple of years, but lately we’ve started to ask even bigger questions; such as whether the compulsory education system as it exists in the U.S. in 2017 makes any sense in the first place. I’m increasingly starting to conclude that it doesn’t.
Before I get into that, let’s take a step back. A lot of what I do here at Liberty Blitzkrieg is highlight what’s perverse and destructive about human behavior at this time, and how things can be made dramatically better in the future. If I had to summarize my worldview concisely, I’d state that human beings at the moment are living under highly centralized, hierarchical power structures which are gamed by unethical, greedy and corrupt people at the top who exploit the masses ruthlessly.
Since the worst of humanity will always work hardest and most violently to attain power (this will always be the case), the only way to achieve lasting, positive change is to systemically move to a different model for human activity. Trying to get decent people at the top of a highly centralized power structure is counterproductive and merely a short-term solution if it can even be achieved in the first place. What we need to do is tear down and reduce centralized power as much as possible in the first place. If power becomes distributed far more widely across the planet, the ability for mass control and consolidation becomes much more difficult, if not impossible.
The most significant theme of the next hundred years (at least) will be a dramatic shift toward decentralized networks in nearly all aspects of human affairs. We’ve already seen its profound impact in a dramatic decentralization of information/media content creation and distribution, and we’re starting to see its impact when it comes to currency/monetary systems. Without the arrival and viral adoption of the internet, none of this would’ve been possible. More importantly, only 50% of the planet is currently online and massive social media networks have only been going for a decade or so. If we assume the internet isn’t going anywhere, we’re only in the very, very beginning stages of how it’ll ultimately shape human affairs.
As I noted in the recent post, Bitcoin, Terence McKenna and the Future of the Internet:
I remain in awe of the implications of people across the world easily talking to one another in real time and forming global networks. We’ve become so accustomed to social media at this point many of us already take for granted how extraordinary and revolutionary it really is. Nothing like this has ever happened before in human history, and it’s hard for me not to be extremely optimistic about its impact on life here on earth over a longer time horizon.
One of the most remarkable things about humans across the world talking to one another, is it becomes increasingly difficult to manipulate distinct populations into hating each other and rallying around wars that only benefit elite sociopaths in the first place.
As things stand now, people from all over the planet are examining the way the world functions and coming to the conclusion that it’s completely insane and anti-human. We live in a world where we’re told to be slaves to authority and expert judgement, despite the fact that such figures are consistently and spectacularly wrong, with their proclamations often leading to massive levels of death, destruction and economic collapse all over the world. To summarize, the world as it’s currently organized is transparently insane and cannot stand up to even the slightly degree of scrutiny. As more and more people wake up to this reality, the world will change in unimaginable ways. The earth as it stands today will be unrecognizable in 25 years.
Although I’ve discussed what this means when it comes to governing institutions and monetary systems frequently this year, one area that I’ve only begun to explore is education. As our kids creep toward the age where most children enter the school system, my wife and I have started to examine what this system looks like, and if it’s as insane as everything else about the world today. The answer seems to be, yes.
Earlier this year, I came across a 1990 speech given by famed teacher and author, John Taylor Gatto, and it completely and totally blew my mind. I highlight a few excerpts below, but cannot stress enough how important it is to read the entire thing. It’s one of the most powerful pieces of information I’ve ever shared.
Our school crisis is a reflection of this greater social crisis. We seem to have lost our identity. Children and old people are penned up and locked away from the business of the world to a degree without precedent – nobody talks to them anymore and without children and old people mixing in daily life a community has no future and no past, only a continuous present. In fact, the name “community” hardly applies to the way we interact with each other. We live in networks, not communities, and everyone I know is lonely because of that. In some strange way school is a major actor in this tragedy just as it is a major actor in the widening guilt among social classes. Using school as a sorting mechanism we appear to be on the way to creating a caste system, complete with untouchables who wander through subway trains begging and sleep on the streets.
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