Thursday, 15 February 2018

Gates Foundation Annual Letter Reveals New Plans for Education

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In their annual letter released on February 13, Bill and Melinda Gates reveal some of the ambitious goals for their eponymous foundation. Surprising to no one is the priority they place on fiddling with education.

Presented in the form of “The Ten Toughest Questions We Get” and their corresponding answers, the Gateses come right out of the gate with their desires to shape education in the United States.

“Our foundation spends about $500 million a year in the United States, most of it on education,” the couple claims.

One of Bill Gates’ most infamous “investments” in education came in the form of the Common Core curriculum. As reported by The New American:

The most high-profile foundation to bankroll Common Core — and reportedly the biggest single source of funds — was the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a Rockefeller-allied organization with a dubious history of financing everything from population control and pro-abortion forces to various United Nations agencies and schemes. In 2010, the Gates Foundation even received the “Population Award” from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), which was exposed in Congress for facilitating the Communist Chinese dictatorship’s barbaric “one-child policy” and coerced abortions. Other UNFPA award winners include Planned Parenthood, also financed by Gates.

Speaking to the National Conference of State Legislators, billionaire Bill Gates, who made his fortune in computer software, explained one of the long-term goals of Common Core. “We’ll know we’ve succeeded when the curriculum and the tests are aligned to these standards,” he said. In a nutshell, that is the endgame: a national educational system run from the shadows by unaccountable forces that will ultimately capture the minds of America’s youth at an early age.

The New American commented on the “real agenda” behind the implementation of these state-sponsored standards:

Totalitarian leaders from Hitler to Stalin and everywhere in between have always sought to centralize and control education. The reason is simple: Whoever molds the minds of the youth can eventually dominate the population, even if it takes a generation or two. That is why tyrants in recent centuries have demanded compulsory, government-led education. Hitler made clear that he wanted to use “education” as a tool to mold German children in accordance with the National Socialist regime’s despotic and murderous ideology. So did Stalin, and numerous other infamous tyrants and mass-murderers. As Karl Marx noted in his Communist Manifesto, government-controlled schooling is essential to achieving the goals of socialism.

In his masterpiece On Liberty, renowned British philosopher and parliamentarian John Stuart Mill succinctly explained the inherent problems with government schools. “A general State education is a mere contrivance for moulding people to be exactly like one another; and as the mould in which it casts them is that which pleases the predominant power in the government … it establishes a despotism over the mind, leading by natural tendency to one over the body,” he wrote.

The Gates Foundation’s letter presents their academic ambition in such vague language, however, that it is unlikely to lead anyone to seek out their actual agenda.

“We love our country and care deeply about the people who live here, so we are also committed to fighting inequities in the United States,” they write. “All the evidence, including our personal experience, suggests that education is the key to opportunity.”

Education is, unquestionably, important. In fact, James Madison — a man who knew quite a bit about education — suggested that “The advancement and diffusion of knowledge is the only guardian of true liberty.” 

Liberty will lead to inequities, however, and a drive to fit the square peg of individual liberty into the round hole of scholastic sameness seems to define the goal of the Gateses.

After even a cursory glance at the Common Core curriculum, one is reminded of the description provided by Aristotle of one of the first tactics used by tyrants to maintain their power: “lopping off outstanding men” by preventing their education. Thus, writes Aristotle, people are prevented from a very young age from developing “pride and confidence.”

Anyone who’s seen Common Core in action in a school can testify that there is little of the engendering of pride or confidence in the students subjected to those standards.

Finally, the Gateses are “asked,” “What do you have to show for the billions you’ve spent on U.S. education?”

Their responses reveal more than they probably realized.

“America’s public schools are still falling short on important metrics, especially college completion,” the couple claims.

While this is certainly a common trope, one must wonder why such metrics were unknown to generations of Americans and yet they managed to defeat the world’s mightiest empire, establish a Constitution that — give or take — is still functioning today, to establish an economic powerhouse that is unrivaled, and to produce some of the most influential philosophers, statesman, and thinkers ever known to the world. All of that without schools aimed at producing college graduates.

Education in America was aimed at one thing in the early Republic: creating good men who valued liberty.

Again, James Madison wrote in a letter to William Barry in 1822 that schools ought to “throw that light over the public mind which is the best security against crafty and dangerous encroachments on the public liberty.”

Would the Gateses agree with Madison?

Do the efforts of The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation tend to throw that light of liberty upon the young men and women of the United States?

Ultimately, what will the future hold for the Foundation and its efforts to overhaul education?

“Our role will be to support the schools as they design changes, gather and analyze data, and make adjustments over time based on what they’re learning,” the letter reads.

How many of you just shivered when you read that Bill Gates wants to increase the gathering and analyzing of data in more schools across the country?

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