Chris Lehmann’s blog post today, Enough Already, provides further evidence of how public education is being hijacked by corporate assassins, political demagogues, merry pranksters and desperate parents. We need to get mad AND get active!

I responded:

Chris,

I agree with you on the issues, but I’m not sure I agree about tactics.

It is obvious that the mean-spirited name-calling, mockery and condescension is working VERY well for the other side.

The days of Dale Carnegie are over. This is Hannity and O’Reilly time. Failure to accept, embrace and develop the skills required to shout louder than our opponents AND tear down their house of cards is critical.

Is it nice? No
Is it necessary? Yes
Is it effective? They’re winning

I went on to suggest a small collection of books (and one film) that captures the spirit of the battle we find ourselves in. They may be read by teachers, students and parents – anyone concerned about preserving public education, but the blog would not allow the posting for some reason. So, here is my hardly exhaustive “summer reading” list:

  1. Buck Up, Suck Up . . . and Come Back When You Foul Up: 12 Winning Secrets from the War Room by James Carville and Paul Begala
  2. The Best of Abbie Hoffman: Selections from Revolution for the Hell of It, Woodstock Nation, Steal this Book and New Writings
  3. Rules For Revolutionaries: The Capitalist Manifesto for Creating and Marketing New Products and Services by Guy Kawasaki
  4. Education Hell: Rhetoric vs. Reality by Gerald Bracey
  5. Why Is Corporate America Bashing Our Public Schools? by Susan Ohanian and Kathy Emery
  6. All the President’s Men (DVD)
  7. Not with Our Kids You Don’t: 10 Strategies to Save Our Schools by Juanita Doyon
  8. The Exhausted School: Bending the Bars of Traditional Education by John Taylor Gatto

The list is admittedly ecclectic, but might help us shape our message, strategy and tactics on behalf of young people.

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