Jed's Grave

Jed's Grave
Woodlawn Cemetery at Ferndale, WA
This blog is a tribute and memorial to the life of my dear friend, O. Jerome (Jed) Brown. The writings posted here are the articles that he published in his newsletter, The Traditional Educator. His theme was the art of teaching versus psychological conditioning, the nobility of the former and the wanton destructiveness of the latter.


Jed campaigned for the office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction in the State of Washington in 1992 and 1996. His platform was to return public education back to the traditional knowledge-based disciplines of learning; to save our school system, teachers, children, families and scociety from the disaster of the "education reform" mandated by HB 1209, our state's version of outcome based education.



In 1993 Jed led a group of concerned parents and teachers in an effort to repeal HB 1209. Had Referendum 47 succeeded, the disastrous WASL test requirement would never have seen the light of day.



In 1995 Jed researched, wrote and co-produced a 4-part video series, "The People vs The Educational Confederacy: Educational Restructuring on Trial" with Katie Levans of Tacoma, WA. If you want to know who is responsible for "education reform," this 2-hour video production lays it all out.


On September 6, 2009 Jed Brown passed away.



Please join me in "Remembering Jed."

1994 Maltby Meeting

Cursor down to the bottom of the page for six video clips of Jed's remarks addressing Education Reform legislation, Outcome-based Education, Behavioral Conditioning and Curriculum.



Sunday, January 31, 2010

THE DIRTY LITTLE SECRET OF SCHOOL CHOICE & CHARTER SCHOOLS

By O. Jerome (Jed) Brown - 1995

To begin, it is only proper to clear up some confusion that may exist in reference to the subject in question. Often, the same concept is known by several names, which is the case here. In speaking of the topic, one might quote from the immortal bard, “What's in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet?” Or, depending upon a person's perspective, it might be said, “What's in a name? A dead mackerel by any other name would carry the same stench?” Point being, regardless of one's perspective, school choice, voucher systems, scholarship programs, GI bills, and charter schools, are all terms signifying the same concept, the quasi-privatizing of education.

Changing the name is just a marketing strategy. If the good folks don't buy, change the name and keep changing it until the sale can be closed. Its sort of like calling a two-bedroom house a cute little bungalow. It's called word-smithing. The same strategy is seen in the Outcome-based/Performance-based name game. In either case, the thought is never broached, “If the names must be continually changed to sell the product, maybe its just a bad product.” Nevertheless, no matter what name is on the tag, they all amount to the same thing, privatizing a public institution. Rose or mackerel, one must get beyond the ad campaigns and understand the conceptual base, in order to form a reasoned judgment.

If the New International Economic Order of the New World Order is to be a capitalist system under which the means of production are to be controlled the the Elite of the International Banking Cartel and Multinational Corporations, and if knowledge is a means of production in the Information Age of the 21st Century, and If schools are the dispensers of knowledge, then for the New International Economic Order to work, who must control the schools? It is not reasonable to accept that the schools will be under the market system controlled by the Elite? Corporations have found that to control a government of the people is an expensive, messy business of kick-backs and gratuities that interfere with the bottom line. It is much more effective to privatize government, making it susceptible to the market forces that business already controls.

Ah, but there is more! Not only does a Choice/Charter School Program meet the criteria for the New International Economic Order but it also fits the New International Political Order and the New International Governmental Order as well. These, together, form what could be called a new social contract -- a contract between the people being governed and those appointed to govern.

Under the existing political order the people elect those from among themselves to function as legislators and board members who set public policy. By shifting to a market-driven school system the state legislatures and state school boards no longer set state policies for education. Local school boards no longer set local policy for schools. Instead, education and school policies are set by the International Bureau of Education, the International Organization for Standardization, The Carnegie Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation, and a whole contingent of international organizations that are functionaries of the rich.

The existing governmental order establishes elected executives to interpret and implement policy. It is called administration. That is why every state has the equivalent of a state school superintendent, elected or appointed, and every school district hires a district superintendent. Given the existing social contract, the administration of public policy is done through a bureaucracy. However, through a very clever media campaign being carried out by conservative talk radio, the term “bureaucracy” is being turned into a dirty word.

In reality there is nothing wrong with a bureaucratic structure, except it does not fit the New World Order. According to Webster, a bureaucracy is “a systematic administration characterized by specialization of functions, objective qualifications for office, action according to fixed rules, and a hierarchy of authority.” TRANSLATION: Someone is in charge of a rational way of getting a job done and, therefore, someone is accountable to the public for the implementation of duly legislated public policy.

Choice/Charter schools destroy the electoral process and the rational-bureaucratic structure that has worked for 200 years and would continue to work if people would stop voting idiots into office, holding those they vote in accountable. Yes, Choice/Charter schools will alter the politics and government of education so that our schools are in sync with the New International Orders. 

Instead of proper public policy being effectively administered under the old social contract, schools are to be ineffectively administered by site-based councils under the terms of their charter. In other words, schools are to be governed chaotically, by consensus of group of unqualified people according to their international charter under regional authority. The new social contract also gives each parent the right to choose any school for his child, as long as it meets or exceeds these international standards of mediocrity. 

Finally, the entire plan to establish this quasi-privatized education system has a brilliantly conceived marketing plan. Those pushing the New World Order agenda have implored the conservative citizens to swallow school-choice plans in the name of the founding fathers, who would roll over in their graves. The words of John Chubb and Terry Moe, of The Brookings Institute and Stanford University respectively, would have gotten them an invite to a tar and feather party -- “Our guiding principle in the design of a choice system is this: public authority must be put to use in creating a system that is almost entirely beyond the reach of public authority.” (Politics, Markets and America's Schools, 1990)

TRANSLATION: Use public tax dollars to give corporations control of knowledge. A recommendation to commit both malfeasance and misfeasance in office. Would not Thomas Jefferson and the rest see it for what it is – Changing a government of the people, by the people, and for the people to a government of the people, by the corporation for the rich? Does anyone remember King George III and his TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION policy?

Doesn't it make a rational person want the reformers to be honest about their New World Order agenda, so the idea of vouchers would die of lack of interest and people could get on to the serious business of improving education?

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