The Leftist Education-Media Complex
"Progressives" work to make Americans dumber and less self-reliant.
What was the Obama administration’s rationale behind the ludicrous effort to scrub the partial transcript of Orlando terrorist Omar Mateen’s 911 phone calls to police? Obviously, it was primarily to further Barack Obama’s preferred narrative of his awesomeness in dealing with terrorism, but there’s more. In a column for National Review, Ian Tuttle explains, “If they act like they think we’re idiots, it’s because they do.”
If there is a more fundamental element to progressive ideology than the belief that the overwhelming majority of Americans are not only stupid, but wholly incapable of running their lives without progressive intervention, one is hard-pressed to imagine what it is. Yet despite all their self-professed brilliance, most progressives have blurred the critical distinction between two concepts that make all the difference in the world:
Stupidity — and ignorance.
Webster defines stupidity as “the state of being foolish or unintelligent.” Ignorance, on the other hand, is a “lack of knowledge, understanding, or education.” There is little doubt substantial numbers of Americans lack knowledge, understanding or education. There is even less doubt that progressives like it that way. The left has controlled the public school system for decades, and their handiwork is searingly described by American Thinker columnist Glenn Fairman, who made a startling discovery during a stint as a substitute teacher more than 20 years ago:
“In a dusty corner shelf of the room was a set of thirty-year-old textbooks from the mid-1960s. … I was astonished to find what I would now consider an upper-level college textbook under color of what in the high schools used to be termed ‘civics.’ … I spent the rest of the day in slack-jawed amazement, perusing what a student in a working-class town was expected to know before the mavens of education began tinkering with the curricula of our schools.”
Tinkering? More like the wholesale destruction of standards in favor of leftist indoctrination. Hence, multiple generations of Americans lack basic skills once taken for granted. On the 2014 National Assessment of Educational Progress test, only 25% of students were considered proficient, or above, in history, civics and geography. A 2012 study revealed Americans ages 16-65 rank in the bottom five in math skills compared to their counterparts in 20 other nations. A study released last year revealed 32 million American adults are virtually illiterate, 21% of adults read below a fifth-grade level, and 19% of high school graduates can’t read at all.
How does a functional illiterate earn a diploma? International journalist and educator Alex Newman insists legions of experts and the U.S. Department of Education “want the system to be doing what it’s doing, and that is destroying real education.”
That effort dovetails with a mainstream media more than willing to promote “The Narrative.” The foundation of The Narrative is the idea that any American who disagrees with any part of the leftist agenda can be dismissed with a barrage of derogatory epithets whose common denominator is a lack of intellectual acumen. Thus, for example, it is completely unsurprising that author Rick Shenkman — whose book, “Just How Stupid Are We? Facing the Truth About the American Voter,” chronicles much of the nation’s dumbing-down — insists the decline explains voter preferences for Republicans. Shenkman’s viewpoint is echoed by a president who ran on Hope and Change™, but still managed to contemptuously dismiss half the nation as “bitter clingers” to guns, religion and xenophobia.
Such intellectual bigotry is nothing new. Following the Republican takeover of Congress in the 1994 mid-terms, the late ABC TV anchor Peter Jennings declared voters had “a temper tantrum,” and that the nation “can’t be run by an angry two-year-old” in reference to that victory’s architect, Newt Gingrich.
The decline in media integrity has been steady ever since. “There is not a finer example of the media ignoring the facts and shaping a message than what we are witnessing regarding Hillary Clinton’s email server, the classified material on that server, as well as the case of the missing emails,” writes Mark Hewitt. Efforts that include burying indisputable realities such as highly classified information on secured closed-end computer systems “migrating” to an open system and appearing in at least 1,340 of Clinton’s home emails; and Clinton herself admitting she wiped 33,000 emails off her server. The former effort is a clear violation of 18 United States Code Section 1924 punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment. The latter is called “spoliation of evidence,” and America’s legal system grants investigators the right to presume it was done for nefarious reasons.
The media are doing their utmost to frame these potentially catastrophic breaches of national security as inconsequential — when they bother to report on them at all.
Moreover, the media firewall protecting the Clintons is getting thicker. They are now coordinating with Hillary’s campaign to prevent former Clinton White House Secret Service officer Gary Byrne from appearing “on ANY broadcast network,” as Drudge puts it, to inform the public about his new book, “Crisis of Character.” It allegedly details rancid behavior perpetrated by the former First Couple.
Yet even more remarkable is the calculated disinterest that attends the Clinton Foundation. This despite stories about a uranium deal involving major Clinton donors resulting in the sale of one-fifth of all U.S. uranium production capacity to the Russians, or Bill Clinton’s abrupt resignation as honorary chancellor from Laureate Education. That for-profit college company paid Bill a whopping $16.46 million over five years, while the State Dept. doled at least $55 million to a group run by Laureate founder and chairman Douglas Becker during Hillary’s tenure as Secretary.
Neither Clinton has been asked to explain the uranium deal in over a year. And in 10 Democrat debates, not a single question was asked about Bill’s education scam.
And it’s not just the Clintons being insulated. One could make a reasonable argument the biggest story of the week was the Federation for American Immigration Reform’s (FAIR) revelation that criminal aliens released by the Obama administration in 2014 committed nearly 10 times the number of crimes the administration reported to a House Judiciary Committee last July.
“A recent survey found that not a single member of the White House correspondent pool was a Republican,” Hewitt reveals. “Journalists and those correspondents take their orders from senior editors and producers. When it’s 44 [Democrats] to zero Republicans, the numbers are on their side and so is their ability to control and dictate the White House message and Democrat party narrative.”
In 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned the nation about the dangers attending the “military industrial complex.” Today, Americans should be far more concerned about a leftist-dominated “education-media complex.” One dedicated to the elimination of critical thinking skills in favor of indoctrination, and the life-long reinforcement of that indoctrination with an ongoing media narrative. “Those who are capable of tyranny are capable of perjury to sustain it,” stated 19th century legal theorist Lysander Spooner. Unlike ignorance and stupidity, the narrative and perjury are interchangeable terms.