Leno, Huckabee, Homeschooling and the Mighty, Mighty Union

3 01 2008

There’s talk among home education groups and individuals about endorsing and opposing certain candidates, so I hereby declare myself an individual homeschooler neither for nor against Mike Huckabee.

Last night, several competing ideas about free will, unity and individual self-determination came together. Cable news looked to Iowa while I watched Huckabee on Leno, despite the striking union barring his individual path, as the not-writing writers sang (in unison, natch):

Everywhere we go-o
People want to know-o
Who we ah-are,
So we tell them —
We are the Union, The mighty, mighty Union. . . .

Hang together or we’ll hang separately. Strength in numbers. Majority rule. School uniforms? — why not, everything else is already standardized, unionized, controlled, defined and delimited, including both working and not working, and where you can or cannot go, to do either one. Some free will.

. . .it’s not working, not for anybody – not the corporations and managers, the stockholders and Wall Street, not for the purgatory-bound “employees” and their families.

Work and change may be hell, but the lesson of the day seems to be there’s nothing heavenly about not working and not changing, either.

Meanwhile, in a galaxy far, far away, the same lesson is being taught at School.

Unions like public schools are supposedly “liberal” yet can hardly be said to respect the individual. Individuals are forbidden to deviate from the union’s will. And I don’t just mean it controls and disciplines its own members to the point of depriving real kids of mom or dad’s paycheck for the duration, maybe getting them fired altogether — the social pressure not to cross a picket line affects us all, as if it’s printed in America’s Unwritten Rules of the Cultural Road, right there next to Public School Taxes and Support Our Troops (neither of which honors the individual over the collective, either.)

Conservatives have their churches to control the faceless masses, of course.

And all persuasions have their political parties, with their obsessive message control and what they like to call “party discipline” even for their celebrity candidates. (Remember when Joe Lieberman was a good party soldier, and what happened to him when he wasn’t?)

So I haven’t been thinking or talking about prez candidates individually, trying to get to know them as individual personalities to choose among them, because it seems to me that false storyline is how we as supposedly self-governing individuals, supposedly reconstituting OUR government each election cycle, get snookered every time — out of our unity as one people AND our individual freedom not to be.





Favorite Daughter Writes Again! (Sam Already Found it)

3 01 2008

And boy oh boy, is she clearly NOT a schooled and ruled, rebellious little robot. . .

“I actually wrote this for a class “:

It’s the holidays, still, and I haven’t felt much like writing. So, to compensate, I offer this piece, which I wrote as my final essay in my Humanities class. And, because I know you will ask after you read it: Yes, I actually turned this in.

I turn in all kinds of things that would blow your mind, like an instructor review in which I penned, verbatim, “The only thing I think you should be aware of is that you sometimes have a tendency to stare down your students in a way that can be intimidating. I’ve been wondering if you do this on purpose or not, so I thought I’d inform you in case you weren’t. Thank you for a wonderful class experience!”

And I once turned in a Psychology paper about non-verbal communication in which I did nothing but talk about Hillary Clinton for five pages; for a creative writing class, I wrote short stories about blind children lighting fires and a janitor murdering a magician; last fall I wrote an in-class essay about how much I hated my job, and related it to a famous poem.

Yeah, I’m a rebel, all right.

Back to the FAQ about the paper you’re about to read: Yes, I purposely wrote it in a pompous, overbearing tone, I most likely O.D.’d on John Hodgeman right before writing it. And, yes, I did pass it around to a few of my classmates to show off before I turned it in, and yes, a math major whom I know in passing did almost disintegrate as it touched her skin, which is always how I measure success as a writer. And yes, I got an A.

Final Exam Essay; The Illustrious PenguinDust; Humanities I (Honors); Professor X; December 11, 2007

. . .You”ll have to click over to Snook Too for the full effect. She just slays me . . .