PART II – THE AMERICAN SOCIALIST DREAM
In 1906, sociologist Edward Roth, described the new purpose of modern education in his work Social Control. “Plans are underway to replace family, community and church with propaganda, mass-media and education…people are only little plastic lumps of dough.”[i] Dr. Dennis Cuddy quotes the father of modern American education, Dewey himself as saying, “Through the schools of the world we shall disseminate a new conception of government – one that will embrace the collective activities of men”. He foresaw the need for “scientific control” with regard to all economic activities. All of this of course would be done “…in the interest of all the people”. The school was to be the lab that made it happen! [ii]
In fact, in 1896, Dewey opened his “educational laboratory” at the University of Chicago. The Dewey School was a pioneer in the field of behavioral psychology. In his view, testing was not to serve any educational purpose, but was to be used only to determine “…the child’s fitness for social life”. In Democracy and Education, he referred to individualism as a form of “insanity”. The whole purpose of education was to change society by changing the individual. By 1912, the National Education Association (NEA) was touting sex education as a tool to be used to change the values of American culture. To Dewey and his disciples in the burgeoning National Education Association, that is what it was all about; – changing American society. As the 20th century wound on, the educational powers, led by the NEA, the nation’s powerful, dominating teacher’s union, adapted more of the theories of behavioral psychology, in pursuit of their goal to transform that culture. By the post-WWII era, behaviorist B.F. Skinner was advocating that children should be reared by the State. Dewey’s Marxist thinking had stepped out into the open. Fifty years later, Hillary Clinton was pushing much the same principal of child rearing in her book, It Takes A Village. By then, its Marxist overtones had become mainstreamed to all but the most discerning. This remains the dominant mindset of the education establishment today.
Traced to its roots, it was nothing but an echo of Marx’s screed, “Abolish the family!”, found in the Communist Manifesto itself. To Karl Marx, it was the traditional family that promoted the values of Christianity and Capitalism. It was the schools; home schools, private and public schools of the old model that transmitted and reinforced those values. He found the parent-child relationship “disgusting”. In his Manifesto he wrote, “We destroy the most hallowed of relations when we replace home education with social”. [iii] By 1919, these collectivist ideas had spread deep enough into the culture to see the American Baptist Society publish W.Z. Batten’s, The New World Order, which called for “social control” and the establishment of universal government through a “world federation”.[iv] It is not surprising then that the NEA adopted Marx’s plank calling for “Free education for all children in public schools”. To both Marx and the progressive atheist / socialist thinkers of the NEA, and the education establishment, this was but a ruse to bring about full government control of the children of the nation. By the 1930’s, William Foster, head of the American Communist Party was calling for Federal control of all education through the establishment of a “National Department of Education”. [v] After WWII, massive Federal funds began to flow into education. The national government was treading where they had not tread before. In 1980 the Department of Education was set up under President Carter. The new cabinet level department meant the near disenfranchisement of parental control of schooling. The socialist agenda of Marx and Dewey was now in place. Big Brother was running the schools.
Communist chief, Foster did not stop with just advocating for Federal control, however. He also called for the banishment of God from the schools. This of course was right in line with what was desired by Dewey’s heirs in the NEA. In 1961, the Supreme Court reasoned that because the Federal government “…subsidizes, it has the right to control”, and outlawed prayer in the public schools. Writing in The Socialist War on God Continues, Steve Farrell describes what followed. “The removal of prayer was followed by the removal of God from every textbook and the replacement of the Judeo-Christian viewpoint with the humanistic ‘progressive’ ideology of Karl Marx and John Dewey.” American Communist chief William Foster’s dream outlined in his book, Toward Soviet America, was in the process of being realized. American society was “…being cleansed of religious, patriotic and …bourgeois ideology”, and being replaced by “…materialism, internationalism and the general ethics of the new Socialist society”. Foster had once pined for a time when “Freedom will be established for anti-religious propaganda.” That time had now arrived. As John Taylor Gatto explains it: This all came about because a self-perpetuating educational hierarchy had come to power over the first half of the 20th century. As they did, “Obstacles like religion, tradition, family, the natural rights guaranteed by our founding documents were steadily beaten back….The traditional God was banished entirely before 1950 to be replaced by psychological missionaries in a social-work priesthood”.[vi]
This was not a dream that was realized unaided. It had some very powerful allies, indeed. Socialism was not an easy sell to a nation reared in proud independence and legendary self-reliance. But changed it was. The nation of self-reliant farmers and bootstrap conquerors of a wild continent, had became in less than a century, a mass of puling humanity, increasingly dependent on government for the very basics of life. John Taylor Gatto, author of Dumbing Us Down, found that this was the ideal population to serve as low level producers in a world increasingly dependent on the “…potential in machinery and fossil fuel”. To Gatto, it was no coincidence that industrialists and financiers like Rockefeller and Carnegie provided the financial fuel for this new movement in education. In the first decades of the 20th century, they outspent the Federal government on education. Gatto quotes the mission statement of the Rockefeller funded General Education Board. “In our dreams, people yield themselves with perfect docility to our molding hands. The present education conventions of intellectual and character education fade…we work our own goodwill upon a grateful and responsive folk….We shall not try to make these people …into men of learning or philosophers or men of science.”[vii] This was a grand design of social control indeed: A plan to turn the American experience upside down. It has succeeded.
The American education system of the early 21st century is the fulfillment of the long term Marxist dream. The education establishment is well along in the process of redefining Western Culture.
- God is banished from our schools. In the classrooms of America, He can neither be explicitly acknowledged nor implicitly recognized for His creation.
- The family, sacrosanct for millennia is being redefined. Our schools, again, are the agents of this momentous changed.
- Our children are being reoriented. They are being molded to reject the traditions on which Western, Judeo-Christian culture was built. National loyalty and patriotism is being replaced by a burgeoning allegiance to the notion of One World Government.
- Tolerance has become the supreme ethic. The new ultra-tolerance embraces all ideas as equal. In doing so it fails to judge evil. Because of that failure it is opening the door to a society without a moral compass in which everything becomes permissible. The result is cultural decay.
To many, this is an agenda worth pursuing. The NEA and US Department of Education do so openly. They have co-opted the power to educate our children. In the event they have given us a new theology to live by; Secular Humanism. That is the new religious monster guiding the paths of our young and the destiny of our nation.
[i] Edward Roth, Social Control, 1906, – as quoted by John Taylor Gatto in his speech to the Vermont Homeschooling conference.
[ii] Dennis Laurence Cuddy, Chronology of Education, (Highland City, FL – Pro-Family Forum 1993)
[iii] Karl Marx & Fredrick Engels, The Communist Manifesto, 1848
[iv] Dennis Cuddy, The Leipzig School, http://www.newswithviews.com/Cuddy/dennis11.htm
[v] William Z Foster, Toward Soviet America, (New York, International Publisher – 1932)
[vi] John Taylor Gatto in his speech to the Vermont Homeschooling conference.
[vii] Mission Statement of John D Rockefellers, General Education Board, as quoted by John Taylor Gatto in his speech to the Vermont Homeschooling conference.