Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Beginning of the End

The current insistence by the Department of Education educators that they alone are the gatekeepers to all learning possible, is already a sign that their hoped for monopoly is on the verge of its own self-destruction and implosion -- much as the existent publications demanded similar obeisance, as the self-appointed gatekeepers of information -- before they were overrun, ruined and made irrelevant.

That's the thing about people determined to maintain a self-exclusive monopoly on any human activity and impulse -- they get leapfrogged, and made irrelevant, powerless and useless, when they thought they were on the verge of supreme mastery and control. When the barriers are too exclusive, many will find an easier way, a better way -- without all the control issues and bureaucracies demanding that one can only go through their way.

That is no longer true of the universities, and is even more true at any other level of learning. The critical factor is the desire for that learning -- rather than obedience to that hierarchy of the status quo, which more and more, in every human activity and organization, is seen to be superfluous and unnecessary -- when people are clear on the true objectives, meaning and purpose.

Those in the field of "education," seem to think that "learning" is for the sake of their own job security, and not that it is the basic right and drive of human life that supersedes all attempts to suppress, oppress and control it. That is the story of civilization -- despite the many attempts throughout history for one group of people to fix themselves permanently at the top of the organizational charts for all activities permanently pertaining to that powerful primal drive of humanity. They will be swept away.

St. Augustine, had the very powerful metaphor of the boy on the beach digging a hole in the sand in which he intended to capture and hold the ocean, as his homily on the tendency for humans to drastically overestimate their abilities to this task, and fail to understand what they are attempting before undertaking, while fully confident that they have already achieved by their audacity and presumption.

That's pretty much where the labor representatives have led their constituencies -- over the edge of the precipice, while confident they are still on solid ground. The land and landscape meanwhile, have shifted by miles so that even the most intrepid realize they are on uncertain ground. Only the truly foolish and unaware, think they are still in the old world of their own certainty and unquestionable preeminence. And so, with that smug certainty, once again lay down their ultimatums -- which are the terms of their irrelevance.

We don't need teachers to learn in a world of unlimited opportunities for doing so. Welcome to the New World!


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