|Hard at work|
Intellectual elites know that the word 'dumb' is nothing to do with
intelligence, but is actually about the ability to speak. Yours truly is
writing this in the middle of a child Party Land center, and the thought that
that children should be seen and not heard is a pretty attractive one at the
[Note to self: next time bring an MP3 with recordings of small animals being
slaughtered with blunt objects - it will drown out the sound of the children,
and be marginally more pleasant].
But most people use dumb to mean unintelligent, and 'dumbness' is something we
are supposed to lose in our esteemed child educational institutions, which are
of course governed and controlled by
For any school teachers who happen to have read this far, and are bristling at the
suggestion that they label themselves 'Intellectual Elite', consider the fact that
The Government has
authorized you to dictate to a totally captive and non-consensual audience what
to think, and consider that Yours Truly has no such authorization. But we
A recent survey conducted by some other Intellectual Elites has confirmed
what many of us have known for quite some time - that literacy levels in
Australian children have actually fallen over the last thirty years.
This generation of Australians are first generation who are dumber than their
parents. Dear Reader, indulge me for a minute. Take a look at your
parents. Isn't that a terrifying thought? Can you imagine an entire generation
desperate to control the lives of those around them via the ballot box, and
making worse decisions than the Baby Boomers?
Of course given that the socialist Baby Boomer generation are now mostly
grandparents, the previous generation (Gen-X) didn't have a very high bar to jump. But
the current generation (Gen-Y) must be playing The Limbo.
In spite of all the advances in technology over the last thirty years, all the
extra educational funding per child, all the computer assisted learning
techniques, the advances in pedagogical understanding and the reduced class
sizes (giving more teacher time for each student), literacy levels have
Of course some of the squishy readers may protest about education being about
more than readin', writin' and 'rithmetic. Modern education, we are told, must
be about 'life skills': the ability to cope with the rapidly changing world,
and installing 'societal values' in children like 'compassion', 'social
justice', 'Land rights for gay whales raped in nuclear war', and a hundred other
non-outcomes which are totally immeasurable.
'Political awareness' used to be a compulsory university subject in the People's
Paradise Republic of China, but there is no such subject in Australian schools:
mostly because subjects aren't really taught any more. They just move from
issue. One politically
correct indoctrination session slides into another seamlessly in today's
highly efficient streamlined goal oriented educational system. And the result?
Something vague, squishy and immeasurable.
The teachers (assisted by
their unions) have managed
to put themselves in a position where they have no measurable goals. Even
politicians have to put themselves to a vote every three of four
years. Teachers don't even have to do that.
So yours truly thought to have a dig at a friend of the wife who recently
joined the class of the Intellectual Elite as a school teacher - one who is still
pumped up about her new found importance, and not yet cynical enough to take it
a bit less seriously.
Clearly this is a subject which has come up in the staff-room recently because
her response was instantaneous. There was no denial that the reduction in
literacy was a bad thing - just a denial that the educational system was to
In spite of the fact that The Teachers have total control of the students for 6
hours a day, five days a week, 35 weeks a year for over ten years, child
literacy was apparently beyond their control.
It was the fact that students didn't read any more; the fact that they watched
television; the fact that they played video games; the fact that they used
computers; the fact that they surfed the internet; that teachers weren't
properly respected. The list went on and on. Parents were to blame. The media
was to blame. Capitalism was to blame. Society was to blame. Everyone was to
blame, apparently, except The Teachers, and The Government Educational System.
It's good to see the teachers picked up one skill in their time at university:
And the victims are our children.