Grumble, grumble, grumble *UPDATED*

I’ve been so quiet today blog-wise because I’ve been slogging through a petition to the Court of Appeal based upon underlying motion papers that I did not write. Things would have been better had I written the underlying motion papers because they would then have been intelligible and would have made logical (even if not winning) arguments. As it is, I’m trying to bring order to chaos, all the while trying to respond to the attorney who wrote the original papers who really, really wants me to include his original arguments, few of which make sense or actually comport with controlling law.

The only “respite” from this brain-breaking task was a meeting I attended at my kids’ school, where I was impressed all over again by what goodwill the teachers and administrators have, and how little sense they have of their primary mandate, which is to teach the children. To this end, a lot of the meeting was given over to “green education.” I pointed out that the most useful thing would be to teach the kids to turn off lights when they leave a room, to close the refrigerator door, and not to waste water — in other words, exactly the same things cost-conscious American mothers and fathers have been telling children for 60 years. I also pointed out that the activities in which the school does engage, weighing garbage, solar cookers, etc., have very little effect on the children’s habits. The response was that the school is really trying to educate the parents. I was too taken aback by this information to voice the obvious answer, which is that it is not the school’s responsibility to educate me and that, in fact, I take umbrage at their thinking that it is. Probably just as well that I was tongued-tied in shock, because I would undoubtedly have deeply offended every one of the good natured, but misguided souls, in that room.

As you can tell, I am irked and frustrated, and this whole day has drained both my energy and, at least for today, my enthusiasm for writing anything at all. I’ve got to finish this draft tonight, though, so tomorrow I should be restored to my usual cynical, but ebullient self.

UPDATE: Huff, puff…. Sigh…. Groan…. But almost done with this gosh darn writ.

On another point, I realized that I should have named this post “Raising a generation of green shirts.” As you may recall, one of the most effective things the Nazis did was to get to the kids, the youthful brown shift brigades, and have them both “educate” and inform against their parents. I already get the heavy-handed “education” and can easily envision my children squealing to school administrators about the jar I sent to the trash rather than the recycling bin. In any event, I’m still rather impressed with the anguished fervor with which this roomful of teachers, administrators and parents discussed the stress of figuring out which items were, in fact, recyclable. Really, these people have too much time on their hands and too little grasp of the real world in their heads.


11 Responses

  1. HI BW,
    I can sympathize. Today, my landlord tried to tell me it was OK to operate a furnace with a crack in the air exchanger because the chance of carbon monoxide getting into the living space was small (“Oh, you have CO monitors, right?’) and then I get a notice from the state’s largest medicaid health insurance firm saying they are dropping their contract with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, arguably the premier children’s hospital on the planet.
    Thanks for the note on the SF Boys Choir. I definitely need a little Christmas.

  2. “Bringing order to chaos”. Sigh. A conservative’s work is never done!

  3. It’s not just schools. I attended the most recent American Library Association conference and sat in on several good sessions about pre-school and toddler story hour. I thought the public librarians had dynamic and interesting programs that I could adapt to my school setting.

    However, in every session, the librarians made it clear that they felt the story times were not just about interacting with the children in fun and interesting ways with literature and activities, but also to educate the parents. I forget all the ways they wished to be educating the parents, but they fell well outside a librarian’s purview. I left feeling I would need to add a degree in social work if I wanted to switch to a public library setting.

  4. I keep seeing TV ads with screaming kids telling their parents what to do. One of the You Tube Debate ads comes to mind: “What are YOU gonna do about it?” I don’t know how much success these folks will have in educating parents, but I’d bet they are doing a good job of producing some know-it-all spoiled brats.

  5. Any thoughts about teaching ’em to read, write, and do ‘rithmetic?

    I imagine not…

  6. Another reason we decided to homeschool. I got sick of my kid being taught palpable nonsense instead of the stuff we sent her to school to learn.

  7. Nations have always been under assault from within by elements that sought power, wealth, status, or some kind of advantage by frackng people over.

    This is nothing new. It is simply nature’s , or God’s if you prefer, way of telling us that we still have to prove our right to survive and live.

    We have not reached the end of history, Book, or even the end of humanity and struggle.

  8. Really, these people have too much time on their hands and too little grasp of the real world in their heads.

    It is what happens when one lives in a wealthy and secure place. Rot sits in.

  9. Nature and God does not like rot at all. So they motivate us into being better and stronger than we could ever be by ourselves sitting in a lap of luxury and safety.

  10. Hold your head up, Book! The firm knows your strength and has engaged you to do what you do best: rewriting, not analyzing or formulating convincing argument. Don’t let them down. Just make the document make sense. OK?

  11. […] problem with American education Posted on December 19, 2007 by Bookworm I blogged only the other day about the hare-brained thinking that characterizes the meetings I attend at my children’s […]

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