Voting, education, and defending the U.S.

Posted by: Ed Mattson

The November 2014 elections gave us an earful of political ads on a non-stop basis touting the pros and cons of those running for office. America, being fed-up with politics as usual, went to the voting booth to elect those politicians who promised to change the direction of the country. Surprise, surprise, surprise. . .with the country  facing a myriad of problems which need to be addressed, the first chance to make a positive move forward was to vote to for a budget extension enabling the federal government to continue it’s happy-go-lucky march toward the fiscal cliff. They didn’t hear the voice of the people, and are forcing us to take drastic action against the whole lot! 

2.7 million U.S. military personnel have sacrificed their lives over the years insuring liberty and freedom to hundreds of millions of people who live on planet earth and to protect one of the most cherished rights a civilized society needs to insure their freedom…the power of the vote. As Veterans we have witnessed the price paid in blood and family suffering for those who gave all or came home badly wounded, and it is a slap in the face by those who chose not to exercise their ability to vote, believing, “with millions going to the polls, my vote won’t matter”. Every vote matters!

Now, that being said, we have over one-half the country that should not be allowed to vote because of IGNORANCE. If you are an immigrant, before you can become an American citizen Cant fix stupidand vote legally, you must pass the naturalization test, which includes questions on the application, about the petitioner’s background, and then take an English and civics test. A recent survey showed that while 97% of the immigrants pass the test for citizenship; 67% of the native citizens couldn’t even answer half the questions correctly. Can we be so dumb that we allow absolute, everyday, uninformed idiots to vote?

If you take the time to watch the link (idiots to vote) above, you will understand our public school system is failing our children. We spend more on educating our children ($151,000/student) than any other country on the face of the planet, yet most of the high school graduates cannot pass a test we require of those wanting to become citizens of this country right after their graduation. So I guess it should be expected that in past elections those going to the polls exercising our most treasured freedoms (voting) were simply about as dumb as a sack of rocks and we ended-up with a bunch of politicians like Hank Johnson (Democrat, Georgia) who believes the island of Guam is capable of “capsizing”.

Many of the voters displayed no understanding of the candidates or the issues when they cast their vote in the 2008 Presidential Elections as exemplified by the voters who helped elect the current President, Barack Obama; and even worse, as the video shows, is the fact that most don’t even know how dumb they are. The answers they provided to interview questions are downright embarrassing. I am not the first person to identify such problems nor was the election of Barack Obama and isolated instance in American history, but has been prevalent for many elections.

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”Martin Luther King, Jr.

“The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all“. – John F. Kennedy

The country was promised “hope and change” in 2008 and the majority of the voting public seemed to agree changes were needed. But my concern was that the media did not do its job of thoroughly vetting the candidates but chose instead, to take sides much to the detriment of the country. No one candidate is all bad and I think we can all agree that no one candidate is all good, but for those of us who studied the candidates, the issues, and were aware of what was going on in the world and in our state, it is sad that our votes were negated by the foolish self-interests of those seeking government handouts and other freebies at the taxpayers’ expense, and had the ability to tip the scales of justice fleecing the taxpayers in the process.

“The American Republic will endure until the day Congress (this applies to the President as well) discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money”.Alexis de Tocqueville

One would have to be blind not to recognize the failures of the Department of Education which must assume the majority of the blame for the ignorance and stupidity we see displayed every day right before our very eyes. Many looked with optimism when it was announced the government, with the help of industry, was developing an entirely new educational program called Common Core, which would be an attempt to restore the greatness of America’s K-12 education system. Unfortunately, matters are more than likely going to get worse.

Common Core is a set of federal standards for education in key subjects such as math and language arts, but the standards won’t end just there. The Department of Education is also currently developing curriculum for science and social studies. While the proponents tout the benefits of Common Core, an in depth look at the details and standards, begins to show it’s really just politics at best: bribery, deceit, backroom deals and over-regulation.

According Capitol Hill Daily…

“In the mid-90s the National Governors Association, along with several national corporations, created Achieve, Inc. a D.C.-based non-profit that’s the “leading voice for the college-and career-ready agenda.” Achieve financial contributors include big businesses like AT&T (T), The Boeing Company (BA), Chevron (CVX), Cisco (CSCO), IBM (IMB) and Prudential (PRU). Achieve began developing federal benchmarks and standards in 1998 and soon after, sponsored a summit to determine the “must have skills” desired by America’s top employers. Put simply: the Common Core initiative was started and continues to be pushed by politicians and special interest groups – not educators or parents.”

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation along with the Eli Broad Foundation partnered and pledged $60 million for the development of Common Core, and the Gates Foundation gave ancommon core additional $2 million to politicians and other investors to sell the program to the parents of the school age children in the country. The influence of special interest monies, particularly by the Gates Foundation which now exceeds more than $160 million, have totally muddied the waters developing a curriculum that is almost surely guaranteed to fail, which is what always happens when decisions that should be made on the local level, are made in Washington DC.

To add insult to injury, The General Electric Foundation and its CEO Jeffrey Immelt, have made investments of their own and enlisted the likes of the Fordham Institute, Hunt Institute, Jeb Bush’s The Foundation for Excellence in Education, and Pearson Publishing all of whom stand to gain financially from Common Core’s implementation.

The old axiom of “follow the money”, can generally be said of any and all matters that come before government. Have you even wondered how politicians come into office as ordinary people and leave wealthy beyond our wildest imaginations? Arizonans Against Common Core has provided a glimpse of the fiscal benefits the backers of the program will receive. Pearson Publishing for example, which will be the exclusive vendor for textbooks, teachers’ workbooks, and produce the Online Assessment Readiness Tool on-line testing, under this ill-conceived program, will reap billions of dollars in revenue. Common Core is estimated to cost school districts nearly $8 billion in educational materials just to implement the standards.

The idea that the Common Core Standards will be beneficial is almost the polar opposite to what is being experienced in real life in nearly every assessment of the program. With little input from the actual classroom teacher and local state educational system personnel, Common Core faces a situation where nearly every teacher and the administrators in the local school systems seem to despise the curriculum and the discord it’s sown. A recent Brookings Institution study showed that states using education standards least like Common Core scored highest on standardized math tests. At a cost estimated at $800 million per year over the first seven years, Common Core is just too great a financial burden given the track record of the federal government to run the education of our children.

For the Department of Defense all this Common Core nonsense is a bad omen as well. Each year the demand for well-educated military personnel grows, yet the number who step to the plate and volunteer for duty is less than .5% of today’s youth. As the old commercial use to say, “this is not your father’s Oldsmobile”, and any modern era Veteran will surely agree, “this is not your grandfather’s military”. I don’t see Common Core being the answer to the poor educational performance of our youth, which makes me want to ask the question of where we will find high school grduates smart enough to operate the sophisticated weapons systems our tax dollars are developing.

The sophisticated weaponry that we the public are relying on to protect our liberty and freedom, requires skill-sets that were not required in the days of the Draft. Computers, software, cyber security, battlefield medics with nearly the skills of trauma room surgeons, laser guided weapons delivery systems, and communication and targeting guidance systems with GPS, are well above the normal high school education level. Those seeking a challenging career in the military have to be well above most of those high school graduates out just looking for a job. Only the best and brightest will suffice.

It seems every week our country edges a step closer to total collapse and maybe it is time to revisit the issue of allowing all citizens the right to vote. Every person upon reaching the age of sixteen is allowed to drive PROVIDING they can pass a driving license test to show they are competent. Maybe it is time to look at imposing a competency test before being allowed to vote.

I know this kind of talk will anger those on the liberal side of the aisle, as many have spent their entire lives working to sell the public that only government is smart enough to protect their interests to insure they have a chance in life, and has become obvious that dumbing down the education has their signature all over it. They are the same folks who have kept the lower rungs of the economic ladder filled with those they have enslaved to government programs – POVERTY.  Since the New Deal policies of Franklin Roosevelt and the War of Poverty of the Johnson Administration, up to the Raw Deal of Barack Obama, thirteen percent of the total population who live in poverty, has grown to nearly 16 % today. It isn’t funny that after pouring more  than $15 trillion down the rat hole to improve life for those on the bottom, government has accomplished what government always does best, and that’s make things worse!

As with every article I write there are those who will take an opposing view…no problem…that’s what being an American is all about. But if you believe my assessment of the state of affairs is incorrect, please state your case and provide a little documentation.

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