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All your children are belong to us

All your children are belong to us

This writer at argues that liberals should not homeschool their kids, Liberals, Don’t Homeschool Your Kids:

Homeschooling is so unevenly regulated from state to state that it is impossible to know exactly how many homeschoolers there are. Estimates range from about 1 million to 2 million children, and the number is growing. It is unclear how many homeschooling families are secular, but the political scientist Rob Reich has written that there is little doubt the homeschooling population has diversified in recent years.* Yet whether liberal or conservative, “[o]ne article of faith unites all homeschoolers: that homeschooling should be unregulated,” Reich writes. “Homeschoolers of all stripes believe that they alone should decide how their children are educated.”

Could such a go-it-alone ideology ever be truly progressive—by which I mean, does homeschooling serve the interests not just of those who are doing it, but of society as a whole? ….

This overheated hostility toward public schools runs throughout the new literature on liberal homeschooling, and reveals what is so fundamentally illiberal about the trend: It is rooted in distrust of the public sphere, in class privilege, and in the dated presumption that children hail from two-parent families, in which at least one parent can afford (and wants) to take significant time away from paid work in order to manage a process—education—that most parents entrust to the community at-large.

Read the whole thing, there’s some sociological gibberish thrown in, but really it comes down to power.

One less child of liberal parents in a school means fewer liberal children and parents to control the public school agenda:

Lefty homeschoolers might be preaching sound social values to their children, but they aren’t practicing them. If progressives want to improve schools, we shouldn’t empty them out. We ought to flood them with our kids, and then debate vociferously what they ought to be doing.

The agenda always seems to reveal itself.

Related:  All Your Thoughts Are Belong To U.S. and Everything you have belongs to us


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Joan Of Argghh | February 18, 2012 at 2:39 pm

It is rooted in distrust of the public sphere,

That’s a feature, not a bug.

Wouldn’t want to have one of the parents out of the work force either, would we? How are we going waste all of your money if you won’t let us tax it?

    Joan Of Argghh in reply to WoodnWorld. | February 18, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    They know: the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. So they made sure that women were “liberated” to do something infinitely less important: find themselves. Meanwhile, the State wrote the lessons and indoctrinated the children.

    We sowed the wind on that point, ladies. Whirlwhind harvest a’coming.

      Women can have both, if they want, but they should recognize priorities. They unexpectedly (though it shouldn’t be) also “find” themselves when pursuing their principal priority. Men do too, but not, by design, as intimately as women.

      There is a reasonable compromise between the natural and enlightened (i.e. conscious) orders and it is often circumstantial. There is no legitimate reason why society should move from one extreme, real and perceived, to another more progressive extreme. In fact, it has been objectively proven to be harmful to both individuals and society.

      When they declared themselves “progressive”, the people really should have demanded they qualify their ambitions.

Putting a kid in a lot of public school systems is tantamount to abuse.

This is simple market economics. If you find the product of the monopoly is toxic, you don’t consume the product.

It DOES send signals.

The Homeschool movement was started by anti-establishment hippies. Now they are the establishment, so….

Lefty principles are always, always, always relative.

Maybe some liberals are not so stupid that they don’t know their children are not getting an eduction in these wondrous fountains of knowledge. Some of them might even balk at schools teaching their pre schollers about sex and how to put a condum on a closepin. Some might even object to others telling them what their childen should eat and arbitrarily confiscating their children’s home lunchs. Public schools are pitiful.

My grandson, a pretty smart boy, had to take remedial courses to qualify for some subjects in college. This is just an addition college expense that should have bee taken care of in high school. His handwriting is ridiculous. Crabbed and small,it is barely legible. I doubt the schools even teach handwriting any more just like they don’t teach math or reading. On my job I handled the paperwork of all the new employees of my company and I was appalled at the non knowledge these kids showed. If parents had any sense they would, if they could get by, homeschool their kids. It might be a sacrifice of the goodies in life but the rewards would be greater in the long run.

    windbag in reply to BarbaraS. | February 18, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    I get employment applications all the time where it is obvious that the parent filled it out–neat and legible–followed by a barely legible signature, scratched in by the kid. Pathetic.

Joan Of Argghh | February 18, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Scarier still is that the ones who graduate from public HS or College actually think they know how to think.

They know how to recite.

All that qualifies them for is tenure.

    That’s a point worth noting. There was a recent survey of graduate and post-graduate students in our “top” schools. The unexpected discovery was that the greater majority were little more than technicians. Apparently, our academic institutions are promoting a singular perception of reality. This is antithetical to evolutionary principles, as coerced mental conformance enforces constrained diversity and potential. This may have “egalitarian” overtones; but, unless they can impose their vision on the rest of humanity, then it will leave us at a distinct disadvantage. Well, that, and it denigrates individual dignity, which is the foundational principle of the American experiment and liberty.

They know how to recite.

Joan of Argghh: Optimism is almost always commendable, but as a high school teacher, I believe in this case, is unfounded and approaching delusional. Wildly delusional.

I read through the comments this morning-


Yes, the agenda reveals itself, but . . . is it really such a bad idea to have control over the education of our kids? Maybe if we were more engaged, our children wouldn’t be learning the “Mmm Mmm Mmm” song, painting protest signs, learning about gay penguins (masturbation and anal sex), and being told what to eat, not to fly the American flag on their bikes, or not to say “God” in school? Just a thought.

    Hope Change in reply to Fuzzy. | February 18, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    [I apologize for the length of this comment. I recently resolved to do my best to adopt the motto that “less is more.” But our schools and the education of our children is the heart of the future. I just don’t see what to cut out. I hope others find this information of value.]

    Hi Fuzzy, I agree that it would be better to have control of the education of our children, and that would mean local control, by parents, teachers, school administrators and local school boards over the school, the curriculum, retaining and promoting the good teachers, getting rid of bad teachers. But here’s the problem.

    Have you seen the film, “THE CARTEL”?

    “THE CARTEL” was one of the most shocking things I’ve seen. How do people sleep at night when they are robbing our children of their education?

    A little girl at the end of “THE CARTEL” does not make it into the charter school through the lottery system, and her heartbreaking sobs, and the tears of her mother, are something I will not forget. Another child gets into the charter school, and his mother is ecstatic. Why are you so happy? she is asked, and she answers words to the effect that, “It’s a chance. A chance!”

    This is what we have allowed the unions to do to our schools and our children. (And I don’t care if possibly your neighborhood school is better. (And btw, it may not be as much better as you think it is.) Those are our children, no matter who we are, no matter who they are, and we have failed them.)

    Union control of our schools prevents even the most gifted teacher from teaching creatively, warmly, intuitively, teaching to the student. Union control of the schools prevents even the most dedicated principal from fostering a brilliant, creative educational system in his or her school. Union control of our schools has destroyed the schools to a great extent, much more than most of us probably realize.

    There is a video, and I think I saw it on YouTuber, of a union official saying that he doesn’t care about educating children, that he will care about education children when children pay union dues.

    This whole mess was uncovered in Wisconsin last year and really made public when Governor Scott Walker and Republicans in the state legislature took away the deal the unions had had, in which the state collected union dues and gave the money to the unions. They took away the unions’ power to make work rules (which is another way they control the teachers and the principals and prevent anyone from making beneficial changes for any given school).

    But there’s a whole cycle of corruption that was exposed in Wisconsin. The unions took the money, paid by taxpayers to public employees, and found politicians who would support the unions and do their bidding.

    Any one who tries to reform a school or improve a school, a principal, any school board, or, presumably, any teacher, who objected to the way unions were running the schools, was targeted with reprisals from the school, bad publicity, threats to their job, whatever. Since the controversy started last year, union thugs have gone to store owners around the state and threatened then if they wouldn’t put signs in their windows supporting the unions.

    The unions had a deal with a particular health insurance provider and the union required all teachers to buy their health insurance from that provider. It cost twice what a similar plan cost from other providers. The local school boards had been begging for help for years.

    These are just some examples of the rank corruption.

    Then the tame politicians made deals WITH THE UNIONS for salaries, work rules and benefits that brought the local municipalities and the state ever closer to penury. PAID FOR BY THE TAXPAYER, who had no one at the table protecting the taxpayer’s interests. Because the politicians were bought. Or they were attacked.

    The work rules were manipulated by bus drivers, prison guards and others, to use sick leave and retirement rules, to get pensions sometimes in excess of twice what the person earned in an average year. IIRC, a bus driver who normally earned $90,000 managed to earn $150,00 in one of the years before retirement. His pension will be based in part on that year’s earnings.

    (Plus, I know bus driving is stressful and hard work, but really? — is $90,000 reasonable as a base salary? IDK. Look, I want us all to be rich. I just don’t like communism.)

    Meanwhile, the private sector employee fell behind in their own earnings, and paid the bills for ever-increasing salaries, vacations and benefits for public employees..

    The state was in arrears when Scott Walker came in. As you have seen here at Legal Insurrection and elsewhere, municipalities in Wisconsin are solvent again, Wisconsin is going to run a surplus next year, and NO ONE WAS LAID OFF AND NO TAXES WERE RAISED.

    One of the reasons I wholeheartedly support Newt for President is because Newt wants to send control of our schools back to the local neighborhood and the school district level. Here is Newt being absolutely visionary about the future of education. “THE FUTURE OF AMERICAN EDUCATION”  With Paul Gigot and Joel Klein, The College Board – Oct. 27, 2011   (BRILLIANT!)

    If you support this too, sign up at newt’s network .com. And find your state leaders.

      BurkeanBadger in reply to Hope Change. | February 18, 2012 at 5:26 pm

      I was literally abut to type “AMEN!” to your post, until I got to the end of it. Does every thread on LI of late have to segue into a salespitch for Gingrich?

      I really appreciate when Professor Jacobson posts non-primary topics and when the discussion thread becomes lively and informative without devolving into the same worn out arguments about the Republican candidates. Can we just have a break from it…even a little?

      And yes, I would say the same thing even if I supported Gingrich. It’s just exhausting and redundant after a while

      All that aside, AMEN to about 80% of your post. 😉

        steveadams21 in reply to BurkeanBadger. | February 19, 2012 at 10:07 am

        Amen! 🙂

        Hope Change in reply to BurkeanBadger. | February 19, 2012 at 3:29 pm

        HI, BurkeanBadger. Thank you for your response.

        I would LOVE to respond by turning my attention to other matters.

        (BTW, I love Burke and Reflections on the Revolution in France. Is that the Burke of Burkean?)

        Here’s what I’m up against, dear BurkeanBadger, because of how this situation looks to me.

        Our country is in dire, dire straits. The car is tilting off a cliff. Irremediable damage may be done. Not only do we need to replace the present driver, we must pull the car back up off the edge of the cliff and back onto the highway of individual liberty and freedom. (You see where I’m going with this.)

        The Left believes they have pushed the car too far for it to be recovered. The Left is washing away the underpinnings that keeps the car up near the road. The Left would be trilled if the car would go over the cliff, because you never let a good crisis go to waste, and the Left will use every catastrophe to grab more power.

        The Republican Establishment is willing to replace the driver of the car. The CLAIM they want to get the car back on the road. They CLAIM they really care about the highway of individual liberty and freedom. BUT THEY DONT. And when the Republican Establishment are in charge, they sit in the car and transact business from that vantage point. Because THEY are near the seat of POWER. THEY don’t have to go up on the road. Needing the the road is for the LIttle People. The Republican Establishment do not try to get back to the road. They are stupid, corrupt and disoriented. Their promises mean nothing. The road ins forgotten. Until the next election. When they lie to the rubes again.

        Well, I’ve had it with this routine.

        We need to get the car back up on the road. Period. Our future depends on it. Anyone who tries to drive this car as it is now, will go right off the cliff. We need an Ace on this.

        And we need the strength, ingenuity, determination and genius of the American People on this. Otherwise, our Constitution, which protects our liberties and thus our prosperity and safety, will be lost to us for the foreseeable future.

        So, BurkeanBadger, that’s what I think is going on.

        Now. I also think I see a way to fix this and get the car back up on the road. The man who has thought of the plan is Newt.

        And here is the way it looks to me. I believe that Newt will win in the fall if Newt in the nominee.

        The Team election is going to sweep Constitutionalist candidates into the House and Senate, and NEwt will win the presidency. and because of THE PLAN, we will not just dither around. WE will decisively get the country turned around toward prosperity immediately.

        That’s how it looks to me, and very much so. Newt will win. Constitutionalists will win. Like I can already see it.

        So for me, BurkeanBadger, the election is NOW. Because Newt will win in the fall. It will be a big struggle, I will be there to help. But we will prevail. Because it will be the AMerican tradition against a more or less communist tradition. And we don’t really like communism, do we?

        So the issue is the nomination.

        And I want everyone who WOULD support NEwt if they understood the PLAN to find out for themselves what the plan is, so they can be part of the AMerican Team.

        This puts me out of sync with what many are feeling about the timing of the election.

        I apologize, and believe me, I feel it too. AND, I don’t want to be fatiguing to you. At all.

        But the time is NOW.

        Burkean Badger, I’ve read your comments. You write clear analysis and IIRC, you are no fan of Newt. Fair enough. But it’s pretty clear to me that you and I agree that our country is in big trouble.

        And I see a way back to freedom, safety and prosperity for us, our children, our grandchildren. A way back to freedom for the individual.

        BurkeanBadger, you read the report I’m sure, that we now have a federal government that is inspecting children’s lunches at school and overruling what mom packed for her daughter and making the daughter eat chicken nuggets instead of a turkey and cheese sandwich, fruit and chips. ARE YOU XXX##$%@ KIDDING ME?

        And that’s just one tiny, tiny, tiny, tiny example. I am so genuinely concerned for the very character of our country. Actually, I’m pretty sure you are, too.

        Newt wants to return schools to the control of the parents, teachers, principals and school boards. Do you understand what that would mean for our kids? Have you seen ‘THE CARTEL”? Our kids’ lives go down the drain while school “administrators,” at least in that film, drive expensive cars and sit around in their administration buildings. How could I not mention to people that with Newt, we will fix this?

        So, BurkeanBadger. I appreciate more than I can say that you would take the time to respond to my comment.

        And I would love to respond favorably and take a break. And I’m sorry it’s fatiguing. And I feel it, too.

        But I can’t help it. From where I sit, the election is happening now.

        If Newt were just another sorry so-and-so, I would focus on the House, Senate, the local races and my own life. I would pray to be a better person. I would try to steel myself, and realize that sometimes in life we have to learn our lessons the hard way.

        But Newt really has a plan that, if the American People choose to team on with the plan, will allow us to root our the Leftist changes that are deforming our Constitution. We will restore our individual freedoms.


        One thing I’m noticing is a kind of discouragement. I understand this very well. It’s clear to some of us that Newt’s plans offer a real path to really good solutions. It’s excruciating that others don’t see it. The fact that others, clearly intelligent, well-read, don’t see it, is a matter of pain.

        The fact that the Republican Establishment apparently prefers Obama’s Leftism to giving up their own grip on the tailcoats of power, is a matter of grief and pain. This is a very tough time, right now, for those of us who support Newt.

        Because we SEE. We see that this PLAN can work. And we feel betrayed by those we thought would be our natural allies.

        Newt says in the Citadel lecture below that George Washington was very subtle, and that George Washington knew that it’s better to have an army with HIGH MORALE, even if the army has low equipment.

        I’m trying to find a way to help those who “get” the plan to realize that it’s necessary to have HIGH MORALE, which is a function of DETERMINATION and RESOLVE. EVEN THOUGH OTHERS MAY NOT SEE IT AND AGREE WITH US. So that’s another reason I can’t stop brining Newt to people’s attention right now. I want to help our team be strong.

        I mean, IIRC, Walt Disney went to 50 banks before he found one that would invest so he could start Disney Studios.

        So again, BurkeanBadger, sorry! I would love to take a break. From your perspective, your impatience is perfectly understandable. And you are 100% entitled to your process and your conclusions. Again, thanks for your response. And again, I read your comments and I think about what you say.

        And I’m sorry, I can’t help but feel that if you would give THE PLAN a chance, you might find a lot you agree with. You still might not like Newt. But this isn’t about Newt.

        This is about America. This is about our future.

        Here is another endorsement of Newt, from yesterday, by Sean McKay.
        Please read it and think it over.

        Here’s the link to the American History talk.
        “ONLY COURAGE WILL SAVE FREEDOM” The Conservative Intellectual Tradition in America
 – The Citadel Experience – February 1, 2012 – 1:11:22
        Please listen and think it over.

          Hope Change in reply to Hope Change. | February 19, 2012 at 3:36 pm

          shorter me, above:

          Hi. thank you.

          The election is NOW.

          it’s not about Newt, it’s about the plan and the American Team.

          Sorry!!! I would love for this to be different. Can’t help it.

          Can’t help it. Can’t help it.

          Because the election is NOW.

          BurkeanBadger in reply to Hope Change. | February 19, 2012 at 10:42 pm

          Wow. I can honestly say I’m left rather speechless by everything you wrote. All I’ll say is God speed. Newt is not now nor ever will be my candidate. But, as I have said numerous times before, if he does win the nomination, I will support him without hesitation against Obama. I hope you will say the same about Mitt.

          And yes, the “Burkean” is for Edmund Burke. The “Badger” is for Wisconsin. Born and raised there, although I moved to Iowa for career purposes 18 months ago. I remain immeasurably proud of my home state; it has always been on the cutting edge of reform and it remains so. I am optimistic (though not entirely convinced) that Scott Walker will survive the recall. And if he does, and if the GOP fails to defeat Obama, I believe he will be a leading prospect in 2016.

      DocWahala in reply to Hope Change. | February 18, 2012 at 8:09 pm

      I would like to thank HopeChange for posting reference to “Cartel”. I too was emotionally moved by the scene of the family which lost their shot at the charter school lottery.

      I’ve been in Korea for two months now and have noticed this same filmhas been on the Asian network three times. I take that to mean they are trying to say something to their audience. Iam also willing to bet it has almost no air time on MSM. Guess that says something about the agenda as well.

      Today’s fortune cookie:
      With education, made in USA = worthless.

Conservatives who have their kids in the public school system these days need to do a little supplemental homeschooling (especially when you live in an uber-liberal area).

Children ensconced in an environment of like-thinking group thought are at a disadvantage at being able to become nimble, free-thinking adults.

We live in an area where most of the children have mega-successful, professional parents (who are almost all die-hard leftists).

Yet out children excel in academic competition with these kids.

It doesn’t hurt to be different. It gets the mind working in a child. Our son knows we are a tiny minority in this city and he has thus become very curious about the news and politics recently.

But his mother always warns him, “Don’t tell anybody your dad is a Republican.”

One day he told us his friend had asked him if our family was Republican while they were driving somewhere with the boy’s father.

My wife shrieked, “You didn’t say ‘Yes,’ did you?” Our son said he did … and after my wife groaned, and chided him for outing us, he added that he admitted it only after the boy told our son his family was Republican. Their little secret among the sea of Democrats of their classmates.

The boy’s father is the grandson of Bugsy Siegel’s brother. The boy told my son that if Bugsy were alive today, he’s sure Bugsy would be a Republican. Haha!

LukeHandCool (who was taking a nap on the couch a few days ago when his son came home with his good friend who is Steve Wynn’s grandson … his son’s friends all seem to have family connections to Las Vegas. Luke, dazed upon awakening, just stared at the boys for a few seconds … and Mr. Wynn’s grandson walked over to the couch, extended his hand, greeted Luke by name, and said, “Good to see you. Haven’t seen you for a while,” just like a miniature businessman. Luke hopes some of that rubs off on his son).

    To be fair, conformance is often rewarded, especially in totalitarian regimes. What people need to recognize is that the devil is not in the details, per se, but in the degrees.

    The problem with public schools is they have become sponsors of progressive corruption. While it would be ideal to teach objectively and comprehensively, we should, at minimum, transfer knowledge and skills which increase the value of our individuals and our society. Instead, they have decided to confer a selective history, selective science, etc. In short, they are promoting a selective reality, and especially one that destabilizes not only our society, but also humanity.

    They are teaching from their articles of faith, which happen to be or are exploited to denigrate individual dignity and devalue human life. They would do well to recognize an objective faith is necessarily constrained to a limited frame of reference. Perhaps, they do, and they are simply enforcing an artificial selection in order to ensure their survival and alpha (or mortal god) status.

I am all for homeschooling. Kids get a better education and the parents play a part in their children’s lives instead of turning them over to a union paid baby sitter for 7 hours.

Some friends of mine have six children, all home schooled. Only the youngest one, under four, cannot read Greek or Latin. They study the classics (remember The Monkey’s Paw?) and the oldest one, now 16, could enter college if he wanted. No check book math, or learning how to put a condom on a wooden p*nis for credit as with a SF high school, or being indoctrinated into a liberal mindset where teachers convince kids that they, and not their parents, are the ultimate wisdom.

“and reveals what is so fundamentally illiberal about the trend: It is rooted in distrust of the public sphere”

Yes, lecture is about what is “illiberal” you miserable, autocratic little drone. Your illiberal tribe and its arrogant, relentless and degrading assault on the individual and the very notion of individuality within the Amerian tradition in the name of Progressivism is what has brought you to this point. Damn right we “distrust the public sphere.” It’s been waging war against our beliefs our entire lives — and to what end? A better country? A more educated, more civically alert, truly a more “progressive” country? The average Ivy league graduate couldn’t pass the 1954 Illinois 8th grade civics test.

But you’re too liberal to see all this, right? It takes us “illiberal” peasants to show you.

    Hope Change in reply to raven. | February 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm

    Hi, raven. Well said! Ha!

    BurkeanBadger in reply to raven. | February 18, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    Agreed completely. And by the way, “public sphere” is one of a multitude of vapid phrases recited by progressives willy-nilly. What exactly is the “public sphere”? In the matter of public education what many parents (radicals liberals, conservatives, libertarians and apolitical alike) distrust is an overarching bureaucracy of administrators who are accountable to virtually no one, iron-fisted teachers’ unions with little regard for anything outside of their own power, and weak, timid school boards who are often little more than rubber stamping bodies. What exactly is “public” about any of that?

    Skepticism of and a desire to challange entrenched institutions of unaccountable power is not “illiberal”. It is the very hallmark of liberalism (classical liberalism, that is).

What they think and what they eat. Soon students will need to weigh themselves before and after pooping to see if they have stools of sufficient size, and whether or not dietary fiber needs inserting in their school lunches.

As to the recent articles about home packed school lunches being condemned by the lunchroom Nazis: I was always jealous of those school lunches. Little did I know. My son, now 27, hated school lunches. If he brought his own, he could eat as much of it he wanted. If he had a school lunch, he couldn’t go to recess until he had eaten everything on his tray. In that school district, the high school had a large kitchen in the cafeteria. In the afternoons they would prepare and package lunches for the elementary schools. You can imagine how those lunches were after a weekend. Why is the Department of Agriculture involved in school lunches?

Have American school children grown more obese after the school lunch and breakfast and after school meal programs have taken off? Why are we giving their parents money to take care of them, if the parents are clearly not feeding them? That sounds like child neglect or abuse.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to Milwaukee. | February 19, 2012 at 2:24 am

    Hehe the stools. Reminds me of times yore when we were supposed to be impressed by the fibrous turds of Africans.

    Now when I see a real African I must fight that image from my childhood fibre education.

    Of course today you have Michelle. 🙁

To get your head around what a liberal stands for…

…You’ll need at least 8 heads.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | February 18, 2012 at 3:42 pm

In the words of public sector teacher union NEA General Counsel, Bob Chanin:

“NEA and it’s affiliates are effective advocates because we have power. And we have power because there are more than 3.2 million people who are willing to pay us hundreds of millions of dollars in dues each year because they believe we are the unions that can most effecitvely represent them.”

If there are more homeschooled children, there is less of a need for public school teachers. And if there are fewer public school teachers, there’s less dues for the NEA to collect (and a lower tax burden from taxpayers).

With less dues, there would be fewer public sector union leaders like Bob Chanin in the 1% sucking on the taxpayer teat.

    Demographics lowers the number of school-aged children. But when enrollment goes down, teaching and staff doesn’t go down. When test scores fall or flat line, salaries still go up. The public school gig is a racket.

    Administrators love to complain about how the union contracts will force them to ‘first in, last out’ and fire based on a lack of seniority. The truth is most of those administrators would be terrified if they had to select the most effective teacher, and fire on that basis.

    Yes. I suspect this in addition to the federal mandates and block grants in response to mainstreaming, turning identified special needs students into cash cows. The numbers of special needs and administration personnel now exceed regular teachers in many public schools.

Control of the curriculum is certainly one reason the left is anti-homeschooling. But job protection for one of their largest constituency groups –public employee teacher’s unions– is another huge reason.

    Why not just have local or state government set the minimum standards for schools (hours, days, core subjects and accreditation) and then give out vouchers? Because the janitors’ union and the teachers union would freak out, that is why. That is really the only reason. We created a political monster. Watch Waiting for Superman. We are second in the world for paying for primary school education (just behind the Swiss) yet our schools rank far lower than most industrial countries.

Donald Douglas | February 18, 2012 at 3:53 pm

It’s about power, alright. Goldstein freaks me out: ‘Why Progressivism Should Scare the **** Out of You’.

    I am freaked out too. Unfortunately it is not the messenger but the message. And the fact it is true.

      Hope Change in reply to EBL. | February 18, 2012 at 4:35 pm

      Yea, I’m freaked out, too. Seriously. Seriously.

      When you’re freaked out enough to do something, check out Newt’s 2012 CPAC, figure out what you can do to save our country, go sign up at newt’s network and find your state leaders. Get someone to mentor you.

      And when you get too scared for words, repeat “George Washington, George Washington, George Washington”, until your strength of purpose returns.

    conservativegram in reply to Donald Douglas. | February 18, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    Whoa! I just read the first couple of sentences in this article and had to comment. My granddaughter has spent the last 2 years learning world history. Every time I look, it’s about someplace in the Middle East. She has been spending the last couple of months studying Islam. 7th grade. I asked her about American history. (Let me preface by saying she’s on the honor roll) She didn’t know who the first president of the United States was–neither did her girlfriend. I also started helping her with her reading homework. I actually thought it was Spanish homework because the title on her worksheet was Names/Nombres. Her reading assignment wasn’t about reading, but a lesson in diversity. That’s what the questions on her worksheet were about. My daughter has seriously started thinking about homeschooling.

Ah, so your children belong to “US”, another collectivist/disembodied gargoyle of “others” who know what’s best for the kiddies, and they are to be “peer” trained in the “diverse” ways of “society” (the Great Community Hive of buzzing Groupthink-fan-your-wings-in-the-same-direction-uniformity masked as “diversity”) says one Lefty Slate scribbler.

Indeed. DO read the entire range of anecdotal stories and counterintuitive, non-scientific “peer development” (long refuted) mush in the original article as well. It’s really gruesome slop and gibberish.

The author might’ve wished to address more on the afflictions that ravage the public school’s failings–like Unionitis–and other ideological and social (not to mention educational) reasons for the backlash against the milkwater pap of public education, and thus why this mysterious, alien phenomenon of homeschooling (to her) is growing. But nay….

Contra the Slate author’s claims, teacher abuse of children is NOT all that uncommon. And this is NOT a class issue, and not, you don’t have to be wealthy to pull it off. Glad to see she plainly admitted, however, that public education is basically now a glorified babysitting service for some parents, along with pharm dispensary and social services outlet. Bully for that spark of honesty. Hooray.

Minor housecleaning operation for Jacobson and Co.:
This article was from, not Salon.

Note to someone above. “Unschooling” might have been started by the “drop out” hippies, but homeschooling as generally practiced was started–at great risk and legal legwork and trial–by mostly conservative Christians.

Many thanks!


We homeschool our children; well, I homeschool our children! Both my husband and I read this article and then handed it over to our two who are still here (one is at a private college in Notre Dame, IN)–suffice it to say, a spirited conversation ensued. What a breathtaking piece of propaganda AND gibberish written by someone who has NO clue as to what homeschooling is all about. My background was in the stock market, for many years, and we own our own business–we are far from what is described in this article. My first love was always teaching, despite being a successful broker. After we had children, I talked my husband into homeschooling and we never looked back. Our eldest was finished at sixteen, as was our middle child. He starts at my husband’s alma mater–Catholic college– this fall. Our youngest will be 15 for two months when she finishes h.s. we don’t let them go to college until they are college age. They are well spoken, respectful, can interact with all ages on a variety of subjects, and are just plain fun to be around! Looking back over the fourteen years of homeschooling, I would do it again, in a heartbeat. When I see what the local (blue ribbon!) schools are turning out…..eek. Not only that 85% is now considered an A grade! Yikes!
What a blessing homeschooling turned out to be…we were able to watch our children grow, not only in life, but in Christ, as well. It has been a joy and wonder to behold and not one I would willingly give up to the state.

I did not plan to home school. The disintegration since I had gone to public school decades before was far off my radar. But among innumerable problems and eye-opening irritants, what put us over were the constant parental “involvement” demands, “homework” etc., intrusively dictating and co-opting many hours of family and parental time each day.

The kicker was when I calculated that the amount of actual time in the elementary school that the teacher spent teaching academics added up to less than five minutes per pupil per day, less than fifteen hours per week. Incredibly, it would actually save time to do it ourselves, as well as free up additional time for enrichment activities, family activities, and sports.

So we yanked them out of the public elementary school, still a little nervous, but figuring that down the road we’d place them into a fancy private high school. No need. They started college at age 15.

ergo Rahm Emanuel, Chicago Progressive (and tiny dancer)

The Factory School System we currently have was designed for the Industrial Revolution. It was originally designed to teach those who had mostly grown up in rural/farm areas the basics they needed to get jobs as factory workers in order to supply the great demand Industry had for workers.

Well, the Industrial Revolution has been over for quite some time but they are still using this outdated educational model in the technological world. Our public schools are horse and buggy learning for children who need rocket car learning but the liberals have a vested interest in keeping their dumbed down system for both financial reasons and indoctrination purposes.

Home School and other alternatives will continue to grow in popularity as more and more parents find out how poorly their children are being prepared for their future in public schools. The sooner we get rid of the Factory School Model, the better.

    janitor in reply to Say_What. | February 18, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Added component in the old days were the waves of immigrants coming in to be assimilated, whose parents did not speak English or were not themselves able to educate their children in American history, civics, science, higher maths. We wanted their children to be able to do better than to be limited by their parents’ education and skills. Making education and opportunity available is vastly different from what the public schools have turned into.

    When I was researching before deciding to home school my kids, I read through the educational guidelines in several states as far as what was supposed to be learned by each grade. These are still geared to producing the labor force anticipated to be needed in the future by the particular state.

    Milwaukee in reply to Say_What. | February 18, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    To say our schools prepare children for the Industrial Revolution is a story I would like to object to. A reasonable story which conceals the truth.

    Our schools are modeled after Prussian schools designed to produced soldiers fit to defeat Napoleon. The vast majority were sent to schools to learn to read, write and obey orders. They sat in rows and talked when called upon. When a bell rang, they stopped what they were doing and followed orders to do the next thing. Only a very small minority got to do learning beyond rote recitation. Horace Mann toured Prussia to see what was going on. He wanted something for Boston, to help deal with the teams of Italian and Irish immigrant children, many of them Catholic. He visited schools. But his timing was off. Touring schools during holidays, when teachers and students are gone, doesn’t really give the best idea of what happens. Undeterred, he sold his bill of goods, and we have been stuck with it ever since.

One name that no one has mentioned, who has had the greatest influence in not only our schools, but in every aspect of how our children are being influenced: Antonio Gramsci. If you are an American, and a conservative, you MUST educate yourself to Gramsci and the influence he holds on those who are responsible for our childrens education.

We see the Gramsci theory carried out every day in our public educational systems. You see, you cannot make good little Marxists if you don’t get them early enough and at a young enough age. If those cultural Marxists have to wait to get a hold of our kids until those kids have reached the age of 12, chances are the kids are lost to them.

People think Communism ended with the fall of the U.S.S.R and the destruction of the Berlin wall. They are wrong; it is being taught to our children in indirect ways each and every day we send them to a public school.

Professor, this is an important issue!

I attended Catholic schools in the D.C. area, K-12. My elementary school classes had 55 children in them with one poor nun as a teacher. But they were wonderful teachers and, lest someone wonder, there was no abuse. I attended a Jesuit high school. Again, exceptionally good. Then an ivy league college, medical school, etc.

My four children are now grown. They attended an excellent public elementary school in the San Diego area and then a private high school.

Despite my appreciation of the schools my children attended, I would, if I could do it over again, home school them.

During my own education, I never felt as though I was being molded into a “citizen.” That was my parents’ responsibility. My school’s responsibility was the “three R’s.” They fulfilled that, and more, quite admirably, though, later in my life, I wondered whether the whole process might have been accomplished far more efficiently.

Perhaps it is hubristic, but I believe I could have, and should have, done better by my children (though they might well disagree). I would have emphasized classical studies early in their lives, though I doubt that they would have been reading classical Greek by age three as John Stuart Mill did. But I might have tried, as the Jesuits taught me Greek for three years.

California now ranks about 48th among the states in public education. I believe the school my children attended would still rank quite highly, but clearly California public education has deteriorated very rapidly.

In my view, any parent who does not seriously consider homeschooling his/her children in today’s educational environment (and I won’t itemize the disasters attending public education) is not being an adequate parent.

I truly wish I could home school my children.

This article is instructive because it is a rare example of an accidental (I assume) dropping of the veneer which covers much of progressive rhetoric. I’m speaking of the lip-service progressives pay to liberty and individualism. Liberty is of mere instrumental value to them. When it can be used to challenge non-progressive institutions (such as traditional marriage, religion, etc.), progressives are the greatest champions of libertarian (even libertine) goals. Doing so is useful for establishing and cementing a leftist hegemony.

But, when liberty challenges the leftist hegemony in any way, so much the worse for liberty and individualism. Indeed, it is a shocking affront to assert one’s liberty in such circumstances.

No, parents. How absolutely “illiberal” of you to want to direct you child’s education! How dare you withdraw from the collectivist project (and yes, faintly Gramscian at least) that is public education! Don’t you understand that if you withdraw, it will encourages others to do so? That it may snowball and that our grip on the minds of youth will began to slip? What then? What of the future of progressivism and “social justice” then?

Without power, a firm and unyielding grip on power (be it in government, the non-profit sector, education, the mainstream media, etc.) most lefty ideologies (from unrepetent Marxism-Leninism to squishy Obamaesque ‘social democracy’) would have been relegated to the dustbin of history long ago.

And leftists know this. They know it all too well. And they act acccordingly.

theduchessofkitty | February 18, 2012 at 9:05 pm

“If progressives want to improve schools, we shouldn’t empty them out. We ought to flood them with our kids, and then debate vociferously what they ought to be doing.”

Now that’s the problem here: your buddies are not flooding the school with their kids because.. ahem… they are not having the kids to begin with!

Of course, let’s not discount the ones that are being “snuffed out” in utero, or given a saline injection, etc, etc… Remember that despicable woman who wrote that opinion piece in the NYT years ago on her reasons to abort two of her triplets because she didn’t want to shop at Costco and by “big jars of mayonnaise”? Yep. It is because, in part, of women like her that the schools are not being “flooded” with your kids! You’re making sure they don’t exist to begin with!

However, there are lots of children of Catholics, Evangelicals and even Mormons attending public schools.

It is already established that parents in “blue states” have one or two kids, while parents in “red states” have on average more kids.

The future belongs to those who show up. And, since yours are not, you have to corrupt OURS. Niiiice…

    We ought to flood them with our kids…
    Yeah, I got a laugh out of that one, too.

    “The future belongs to those who show up.” Yes, and we should flood the land. BTW, Muslims understand that all too well.

Growing movement with great potential (if it doesn’t get coopted politically):

Parent Revolution

(They’re driving the left nuts because of their pro-charter school work and successes, among other monkey wrenches thrown into the maw of the leftist public education machine).

Wonder if her irritation at homeschoolers also includes those who send their (pardon, society’s children) to Sidwell Friends and the like.

[…] » All your children are belong to us – Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion.  A liberal hectors liberals about the dangers of not turning young liberals over to “society as a whole” for indoctrination.  Seriously. This entry was posted in News. Bookmark the permalink. ← GOP: Obama put us on ‘a roadmap to Greece’ – The Hill’s Video […]

As Browndog noted above, the comments over at Slate are fascinating. The responses of the liberal homeschoolers is pretty impressive. I am sure Goldstein’s head is exploding.

One of the few comments which agree with her descibes homeschooling as “anti-social — no ANTI-SOCIETY.” Homeschooling parents should put their kids in public school and donate that time to the school and help other children succeed (instead of their own). Right.

Holy cow.

It really is an amazingly badly written article. (Does SLATE have editors? Does anyone have editors anymore?)Really really sloppy and very poorly researched. (Unschooled and homeschooled are different creatures, for one thing. And she never gives any hard data.)

But when one has an agenda, the facts are not important.

When minorities discover the power of homeschooling …

(Disclosure: I am /was not a homeschooler but have absolutely no problem (and would encourage it) for my grandkids these days. The many homeschool parents and kids(some now adults) I know are responsible, well grounded — and well educated — people. They are not the wealthy or the elite — all are middle middle class.)

Aw, poor progressives. It can be so difficult to live up to their lofty ideals.

I teach my child at home. I have known since junior high that if I had children they would be homeschooled. The very thought of handing my daughter over to a government school for 7 hours a day turns my stomach.

My god! She actually says that only government can be trusted with schooling!

BannedbytheGuardian | February 19, 2012 at 3:01 am

Herm comes 3rd . Homeschooled kids ready for college at 16.

Janitors kids second. Ready for college at 15.

Retire05’s friends win . College at 16 -quite average but the reading of Latin & Greek a bonus . The Decider was the 4 year old who is about to begin The Peloponnesian War (in Greek ) in the morning & Plato in Latin after his /her afternoon toddler nap.

Keep it up guys. America will soon be back up in the top 20 nations .( Last time I looked it was between 24 (English ) & 48 (maths).

Ps How many English speaking countries are there? About 8.

    Just a note that early college entry isn’t the end goal. For science types, maybe. But not if one wants varsity sports and high school years are important for that (e.g. Tebow). Or if he’s wanting a service academy.

BannedbytheGuardian | February 19, 2012 at 3:34 am

My apologies . USA is now ranked 35th in the world for Maths (15 year olds ).

The English test in 2011 was not able to be calculated for USA because it had PRINTING errors

LOL -You would not read about it.

“To get your head around what a liberal stands for…

…You’ll need at least 8 heads.”

I don’t have 8 heads but let me try to infuse some 8 legged insight…

This Slate article ties together some recent quite trains of thought.
Newt and the Ryan Budget Plan.
That you can be a big govenment democrat and support religious liberty and/or claim to be a Christian.
(Obama demand that the Church pay for BABY KILLING.)
And the Michigan public school official who recently stated that parents don’t know what’s best for their children.

The single mom with six kids who is “not an economically advantaged liberal” is about to have her quality of life downgraded by Obama spending that is inherently immoral and Progressives always project their intentions.

-to wit, don’t despair home schooled liberals, the progressive indoctrination in public schools has got your back, because you won’t have a choice anyway as the state ultimately will dictate what your values should be.
ie Fascism: Canadian Supreme Court overturns right to religious liberty.

Interesting. We started homeschooling our son in 5th grade. He tried out the new charter high school in town for a year, but found the students disrespectful and disruptive to the learning process. We resumed homeschooling and, last fall at the age of 15, he entered the local community college as a part-time student. He tested out of all freshman English classes and was required to take a remedial math class, probably due to my weakness as a teacher in that subject.

I have never regretted homeschooling him, though my daughter is in the local elementary school, which we are very happy with. If that changes, we will homeschool her as well. A veteran homeschooling family said their policy was to homeschool their kids in the middle school years even if the kids were happy in public school otherwise.

For us, the best thing about homeschooling is that we have a choice. We are not locked into a failing system and we are comfortable with “going Galt” on public education when and if we see fit. That freedom is incalculable.

While reflecting on this subject, I’ve come to the conclusion that public school has some very good elements and opportunities that, yes, a homeschooling family can incorporate, but that make public schools a potentially positive experience. It is not as black and white as some make it out to be.

Furthermore, Wisconsin demonstrated that the public education “cartel” is crumbling. Here in NY, Gov. Cuomo is addressing the union involvement in education as well – you should have heard the union bosses on the radio show “Capital Connection” raving about Cuomo’s State of the State line when he said that unions represent everyone but the students and he would have to represent the students. Oh my… This is a very savvy politician in a very blue state pointing out the failings of the current model in a very public fashion. Don’t think that didn’t hurt the education cartel.

Frankly, I fail to see a way forward that doesn’t involve some method of public school system privatization, which is why the establishment is fighting charters and vouchers tooth and nail. They see the end of the gravy train. How long will it take? Depends on if the Federal government bails out states.

[…] that tipped me over the edge is something I haven’t mentioned for a long time.  A commenter over at Legal Insurrection explains perfectly: “I did not plan to home school. . . . But among innumerable problems and […]

[…] Jacobson comments on the piece, saying: There’s some sociological gibberish thrown in, but really it comes down to […]

[…] Catholics, they will come for usMark Shea: The Mentality of our Ruling ClassIt is about power, and control, a contempt for the masses that insists they must be ruled, rather than lead. // Tags: Conscience, […]

[…] Jacobson comments on the piece saying there’s some sociological gibberish thrown in, but really it comes down to […]

[…] anything that depletes the state’s power over children is, to the Progressive mind, a bad […]