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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/11596/disestablish-public-education/

Disestablish Public Education

February 3, 2010 by

Ivan Illich, attacked by the Left, places public education near the extreme right of the spectrum: “they belong near the extreme of the institutional spectrum occupied by total asylums.” FULL ARTICLE by Leonard P. Liggio


Daniel Hewitt February 3, 2010 at 9:03 am

School has become the world religion of a modernized proletariat, and makes futile promises of salvation to the poor of the technological age.

Ain’t that the truth?
The sad thing is that this was written in 1971. Spending on public education has skyrocketed since then, and we are no better off for it. Actually, we’re worse off. And it’s a heresy to challenge the prevailing dogma.

Barry Loberfeld February 3, 2010 at 9:48 am

You’re quite right, Mr. Hewitt. What we have here is an inherent contradiction: “Compulsion and education — force and thought — are related like darkness and light: the presence of one is the absence of the other. The folly of bringing together both can be nothing less than manifest ignorance of the nature and reality of each.”

Bowman February 3, 2010 at 12:22 pm

I agree with the author, America’s school system is not to educate, but, to indoctrinate. A cure can only be accomplished after the disease is identified and traced to the source of origin. We already know the disease and the source are one and the same, the federal government.

The NEA must be abolished, because it is antithetical to what is education. All federal funding of education should also be eliminated and make it unlawful for congress or any federal branch to legislate taxes or enact any requirements mandating what and how the individual states may teach in any of it’s schools or places of higher learning.

The federal government has destroyed the educational system in America, albeit with great help and lack of interest by the states and of the citizens in each and every state.

billwald February 3, 2010 at 12:29 pm

You are to optimistic. The purpose of public education is to provide free day care. That is why parents go bjerk every time a teachers strike is threatened. It would cause day care problems.

ABR February 3, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Public education is liberty’s greatest long term threat. The Internet offers some slim hope of mitigating the damage.

Paul Stephens February 3, 2010 at 2:11 pm

It’s worth noting that Illich was Austrian, and Jesuit-trained. He went on to even greater feats, taking on the corporate health care “business” in MEDICAL NEMESIS, and founding the Centre for Intercultural Documentation in Cuernevaca, Mexico. My father was a long-time subscriber to its publications – one of the few organizations we both admired in his later years.
Originally part of Pope John XXIII’s initiative to bring the benefits of modern civilization and social justice to Latin America, Illich left the Church (maybe was even excommunicated), and proceeded to do many wonderful things. Beatification should not be far away.
It is very gratifying to see that Mises people also share our enthusiasm.

Curt Howland February 3, 2010 at 2:53 pm
Timothy February 3, 2010 at 3:23 pm

The menace of schooling ends the day it is no longer compulsory. Perhaps that is why, in America, proposing that children should be free to decline school is the blackest heresy.

Lauri February 3, 2010 at 6:24 pm

Can someone point me in the right direction to help me understand his comments about right-wing and left-wing? He talks about free market ideas being left-wing which is counter to my frame of reference. Is he referring to a different context?

AnneM February 3, 2010 at 7:25 pm

To Lauri,

The left wing/right wing referenced here was the original understanding, under the Ancien regime those who supported the royalty and government it stood for were right wing. Those who supported the people and less government control were left wing. The term was corrupted by the progressive movement to mean the opposite of what it did–essentially both Democrats and Republicans are right wing now.

Bruce Koerber February 3, 2010 at 7:58 pm

State-Sponsored Education Is The Antithesis of True Education.

To ponder how far the education system propagated by the unConstitutional coup is from true education consider this: The inherent entrepreneurial spirit in all human beings makes them seekers after truth.

That is the purpose of education: to encourage, nurture and facilitate the search after truth.

Verily, State ‘education’ is the antithesis of education.

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