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Sunday, January 30, 2005

A Sunday Soapbox Without Suds

Today I am lucky not to have put my hands in the dishpan. My husband has taken care of the dreaded dirty dishes. He did the same yesterday as well. It is almost lke being freed from the shackles of slavery to be able to ignore the demands of the dishpan. A nice weekend and it is sunny outside, too.

It has been a busy week on the home front but through it all I spent some time "doing the washing up," as the British say, and thinking. In my opening blog, I described myself as a kitchen intellectual. Today, I am going to go as far as saying that I consider myself to be one of the "Educated Elite" and I am very proud to be a member of this much maligned group. I worked hard to earn this title and I aim to keep it. I am addicted to knowledge. I want to know more and more about almost everything. I will always, as I have done my entire life, ask questions. I accept nothing on faith, and believe nothing without close examination.

There has been a movement for over 20 years to paint all who are educated, have viewpoints that differ with the mainstream views, and question, into a class of devious, democracy hating snobs, who endanger the very essence of all things American and Apple pie. Why vilify professors, students, writers, scientists, researchers, the curious, the outspoken, the knowledgable, the creativive, and the expressive? The accused "elite" do not represent a danger to democracy at all. The educated elite, however, are directly in the way of those who are actively engaged in the "dumbing down of America."

A smoke screen was thrown up and, simultaneously, a finger pointed away from the very class of elite who did and still do threaten American democracy. These evasive maneuvers were spectacularly sucessful. The American aristocracy is safe with it's parasitic lifestyle in tact as the recent Presidential Inauguration illustrated to the entire world. America's monied elite; the corporate welfare recipients, oil/energy barons, eastern seaboard establishment snobs, those who claim to have blood links to European royality, the Old money families, the noveau riche, the blood-monied weapons manufacturers, the moguls of media monopolies, Bush's wealthy tax-cut beneficiaries, and all of those who scheme the American Dream have closed ranks in hopes of keeping the rest of us "in our place." They will give orders from their mansions, and once again, complain about "how hard it is to get good help." Do you really think that the aristocracy, the power elite in the US wants "the help" to be educated?

One definition of the word, elite, was employed as a propagana tool in the 2000 and 2004 elections and that was the meaning that described a group or a class of persons, hence the term, educated elite. The others meanings of the word; persons of the highest class, or a group of persons exercising the major share of authority or control in a larger organization, were ignored. The finger pointed toward the "evil educated" and away from the selfsh, greedy, power-hungry aristocracy that is directly associated with the Bush Dynasty and has been for generations.

I and my family are not wealthy and have never been privileged. I wash dishes, scrub the floor on my hands and knees, pull weeds, hang clothes to dry outside on a clothes line, and do all manner of boring but necessary tasks to keep my household running and take care of my family. While doing so and sometimes also holding down a job, I have managed to educate myself. I have read thousands of books during my lifetime on hundreds of subjects. I read a daily newspaper, several on-line newspapers and foreign newspapers when I can get a hold of them. I have an AA degree because I went to college at the age of 49 and studied for hours to obtain a high grade point average. I did not go on for further degrees because my priorities changed. I also know that I can learn anything that I want by continuing my life long habit of satisfying my curiosity with research. I am "help" who is educated, values education, and knows that lives can be better lived all over the planet through education. There are many like myself who were not handed an education but managed to feed their minds any way they could. There are many who value education.

Education is an on-going process. It requires a hunger for knowledge and the tools with which to learn. But in an America populated by an adult majority that is as uncurious and mentally lazy as the current president, dumbing down is the result of our devalued, failing school systems. No Child Left Behind is merely a propaganda slogan and is at best, a bad joke. The colleges are filled with the playful, oat-sowing offspring of the monied aristocracy while the ranks of the military are filled with those who cannot afford an advanced education especially since the recent funding cuts. To label educated people as an undesirable elite who threaten democracy is the ultimate fool's fodder but it will be ingested without question by dumbed down minds eager for another fix of propaganda.

Democracy is indeed, in danger, very grave danger. It is in danger because an undereducated and uninformed population makes for a very good herd of sheeple who thrive on slogans and march on command. Democracy, you see, requires public debate which in turn requires educated and informed individuals to take part in the process. I am very proud to be one of the latter and will use my education to do what I can to prevent an American Monarchy.

So much for my Sunday soapbox. I have enjoyed my vacation from the sink. I will step off the soapbox for now but I will be washing dishes tomorrow and who knows where the bubbles will take me.

.........Kitchen Window Woman

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