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Author: Anne Segal

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Anne Segal

Anne Sorock Segal is a market researcher and president of The Frontier Lab, a nonprofit organization that seeks to increase demand for freedom and revive a unifying American character using cutting-edge behavioral science methodologies.

Navigate to the Hoboken, NJ, public schools website --a town just across the Hudson from New York City -- and you'll find a front-page announcement that since 2008, Hoboken has based its pre-school and kindergarten curriculum on "Tools of the Mind," also known as "Cultural-Historical Theory." Based on the work of Russian psychologist Lev Vygotsky, the Tools of the Mind website proclaims that it is "rooted in cutting edge neuropsychological research on the development of self-regulation/execution functions in children." Dig a little deeper on your site, and they describe how regulation of the child is accomplished:
  • Children practice delayed gratification.
  • Children learn to suppress their impulsive behavior because to stay in the play, they have to abide by the rules.
  • Children practice regulating each other’s behavior.
The site describes the role of parents in encouraging their children to be regulated with tips like playing "stop and go" and "freeze" games:
Parents can encourage children to practice self-regulation at home by establishing routines. For example, they can help their child to set an alarm clock that will ring when it is time to go to bed, so the child can “regulate” his or her own bedtime. Now it’s the child, not the parent, saying, “It’s time.”

Have you noticed another skirmish brewing, not in the Middle East but among Republicans over support for Obama's Syrian debacle? David Axelrod must be twirling his mustache with delight over his latest manipulation of the leaderless Republican party as they provide cover for Obama's latest fail. Of course, Obama's Syrian problem isn't about Congress, it's about his own failures as a leader -- in this case the logical extension of his worldwide apology tour presidency. Enter Axelrod (if he ever was off stage). August 30 Axelrod puts New York Times, et al., on notice of what the talking point will be -- "this is up to Congress": A gleeful tweet on August 31: Sept. 2, a thank you to the New York Times for pitching in: I imagine a phone call from Axelrod to Obama, perhaps sometime Friday night, with Obama pouting about his off-teleprompter "red line" comment. Axelrod has an idea. Foment a little diversion by foisting Obama's Syrian debacle onto hapless Republicans.

Common Core has recently been referred to by a friend of mine who is deeply in-the-know as "the most successful astroturf campaign in the history of this country." This friend is not prone to exaggeration. The left has had a history of tip-toeing into, and taking over, those institutions most vital to defending freedom -- from our schools to our religious institutions, nothing is off-limits. Count the Illinois Catholic Church as having been bamboozled by Common Core. After reading the laudatory press release the superintendents of the Catholic Dioceses in Illinois released August 19, it is right to conclude they've been compromised, as well. They write:
It is within the environment of the Common Core Catholic Identity Initiative that we maintain the integrity of our mission and to the expectations of those whom we serve.  In themselves, Common Core State Standards are not a curriculum.  They do not dictate our curriculum, instructional methodologies, sequence of topics or materials used.  What the Common Core does establish are clear, measurable goals and outcomes for what our students should know, understand, or be able to do at the end of a grade or course of study.
Witness in this statement the dissolution of any perception that Catholic schools are protected from the educational war in which our children are the prize. Their statement is part of a larger movement of local dioceses signing onto a national "Common Core Catholic Identity Initiative," which you can read more about here. If you're like me -- or like I used to be -- your eyes are glossing over at the term, "Common Core." Snap out of it.

It's worth "liking" the "Ready for Hillary" page on Facebook, the former First Lady's foray into readying the country for her eventual campaign, not only to give your friends a fright, but also to witness just how different her marketing is than her nemesis Barack...

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