On the news this morning, from 2014 it will be mandatory for school in NSW (Australia?) to teach pupils about the horrors of the Holocaust, following moves in the US and Europe. As if it was a secret that has to be revealed.
What about making sure all the pupils know about the horrors of the various communist regimes? In Geography in class in the 1960s I recall a textbook with a chapter on Soviet agriculture which seemed to suggest that the collectivism of the small farms was a great success. It certainly did not mention the forced starvation of millions of people to clear the way for the collectives.
With the looming possibility of wall to wall Coalition governments (forget about my home state) it is time to get serious about stopping the flow of misinformation and propaganda through the school education system. The NSW experience under Terry Metherill in the Greiner government of the 1990s was instructive, demonstrating the bitterness of resistance from the trade union and the way that worthwhile change was obtained by a determined minister. (A pity he turned rancid afterwards but that is another story).
Parallel with the efforts of the politicians, the parents need to get involved at the P&C level to support necessary changes. That will be difficult as well, as I found at the local P&C at the time of the Metherill reforms.
On the Holocaust theme, the late Roger Sandall’s piece on the Soviet attack, almost genocide in the Baltic states.
In keeping with the finding of Justice Bromberg in the racial discrimination case brought against Bolt, I did indeed feel humiliated and intimidated by the implications of Bolt’s article: I felt hurt, shamed and vulnerable.
But rather than simply complain about how the article made me feel, I understood I could only resolve my discomfort through first examining why it made me feel that way.
I realised I felt vulnerable because there was no way I could defend my own position if it were to be challenged; it was indefensible that I should occupy an Aboriginal identified position when I knew that race-based preferential treatment was misguided and unjust policy. I felt shamed because my position was shameful, and my choices were shameful; I knew I was a party to something very wrong, yet I chose to continue because complying was easier than walking away from my chosen career. I felt hurt because the truth hurts, and my comforting rationalisations about myself and my place in the world were already painfully dissolving.
And Moncko strikes again.
That mischevious Moncko, it was all his fault that I fell out with the Troppo guys. Posting a pro-Moncko piece caused a thread of doom with 1000 comments and my exit from the list. On top of that, at the meeting in Perth where I was the speaker, Moncko took the floor and the footage went viral courtesy of Getup so I was off side with all my lifelong leftie friends. It was quite a good talk too, Moncko and Jo Nova enjoyed it (she brought him along because it was the start of his 2011 Australian tour). The one in Texas was better and I got to meet Barry Smith as well, equally impressive as Monckton. The talk was only 20 minutes with rough notes, this is the expanded version, strictly for nerds (and soil scientists).
Gerard Henderson’s column in case you missed it.
And Watts news always has good climate stuff.