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PoliCon
03-16-2010, 10:40 PM
The Texas Board of Education voted last Friday to add conservative values and historical interpretations to the statewide social studies curriculum. As Don McLeroy, a dentist who leads the dominant Christian conservative faction on the state board, complained to The New York Times, "Textbooks are mostly the product of the liberal establishment." Not anymore in Texas, unless Friday's preliminary vote is overturned. The revised curriculum (which plays up the Christian faith of the Founding Fathers, the merits of Joe McCarthy's anti-Communist crusade and the enduring historical importance of Phyllis Schlafly) has not yet been enshrined in textbooks. But publishers will soon have to de-liberal their offerings to make social studies texts Texas friendly.

To help them along, here are two excerpts from an imaginary (but just you wait) high school American history textbook titled "God-Given Greatness: Fifty Stars, Thirteen Stripes, One Language and One Religion."

When Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945) took the oath of office on March 4, 1933, the national unemployment rate stood at 25 percent, in part because of the interventionist liberal economic policies of the Hoover administration. But even in the depths of the Depression, millions of Americans saw the cigarette-smoking, martini-drinking FDR as a beacon of hope, since he had pledged during his victorious 1932 campaign to balance the federal budget. As Roosevelt delivered his Inaugural Address on a cold, gray Saturday afternoon, the new president's signature phrase ("We have nothing to fear but fear itself") implied that he would restore economic confidence by following prudent policies to strengthen the free-market system that always has been, as we have learned, the source of American greatness.

Little known to most voters, though, Roosevelt and his closest economic advisers (Raymond Moley, Rexford Tugwell) had been influenced by the socialist-leaning doctrines of a controversial European economist named John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946). During his first months in office known as the Hundred Days after the brief second French dictatorship of Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) Roosevelt enacted a dizzying series of policies designed to centralize economic power in the hands of Ivy League-educated bureaucrats in Washington.

The first of these New Deal laws, the Emergency Banking Act, was approved in two days by a docile Democratic Congress (the vote in the Senate was 73-7) without reading the actual wording of the legislation. The Banking Act gave FDR and the Democrats unprecedented and potentially dangerous control over the national supply of credit and led to the abandonment of the Gold Standard later in 1933. Many economists, including Nobel Prize laureate Milton Friedman (1912-2006), now believe that FDR's risky decision to no longer support the American dollar with gold caused the suffering from double-digit unemployment to continue until World War II (1939-1945).

Study Questions:

1). When the FDR Memorial opened in 1997 near the Tidal Basin in Washington, successful protests by liberal activist groups led to the removal of Roosevelt's cigarette holder from his statue and also had his wife, Eleanor, depicted without her trademark fur coat. Explain other ways that liberal pressure groups distort history today.

2). Discuss, based on your own life experience, whether Ivy League-educated bureaucrats in Washington understand how real Americans live and the values they cherish.

3). Compare the questionable legislative tactics used by Roosevelt in the passage of the Emergency Banking Act with the techniques employed by President Barack Obama in 2010 to try to pass his health care reform bill.

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Historians often use the phrase "American exceptionalism" to highlight how the United States has preserved its freedoms (such as the right to own a gun under the Second Amendment to the Constitution) and its representative government (small population states such as Wyoming, the home of former Vice President Dick Cheney, have as many votes in the Senate as Democratic California) with other nations, such as France, which have squandered their liberties through socialistic experiments.

Part of the genius of America -- which many leading thinkers believe is derived from the nation's Christian faith -- is that at times of peril ordinary men (and, someday, maybe ordinary women) step forward to achieve historical greatness. Consider a failed one-term congressman and railroad attorney named Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) or an obscure professor of history at the University of West Georgia named Newt Gingrich (1943- ). So it was in Wheeling, W. Va., on a blustery winter evening in February 1950 when a first-term Wisconsin senator named Joseph McCarthy (1908-1957) aroused a complacent America to confront the security threat from Ivy League-educated Soviet spies who had infiltrated the State Department and the presidency of Harry Truman (1884-1972).

Addressing a Republican Party dinner at the McClure Hotel in Wheeling, McCarthy, a World War II Marine hero, declared, "I have in my hand a list of 205 [men] that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party." As McCarthy spoke, West Virginians had just learned that a German-born nuclear physicist named Klaus Fuchs (1911-1988) had been arrested in London for passing on U.S. atomic secrets to Soviet agents. The Ivy League-educated Alger Hiss (1904-1996), a former top Democratic State Department official who had been supported by Secretary of State Dean Acheson, was about to be convicted in federal court on perjury charges relating to espionage.

Yet instead of being treated as a truth-telling hero, McCarthy was reviled by the liberal establishment (particularly The New York Times and CBS News), who exaggerated the importance of unfortunate factual errors made by the anti-Communist Wisconsin senator. Sadly, under relentless pressure from the liberal Democratic enablers of Soviet agents, McCarthy lapsed into alcoholism, which led to his untimely death. Although McCarthy was unjustly censured by the Democratic Senate in 1954, the Wisconsin senator's patriotic contributions have long been championed by such objective commentators as former Richard Nixon speechwriter Patrick Buchanan (1938- ) and erudite magazine publisher William F. Buckley (1925-2008).

Study Questions:

1). During a televised 1954 confrontation with McCarthy, Harvard-educated liberal lawyer Joseph Welch melodramatically declared, "Have you no sense of decency, sir?" Do you think this was a case of "shooting the messenger" because liberals were so embarrassed about their woeful record in fighting Communism?

2). Compare and contrast Senator McCarthy and Vice President Dick Cheney. Based on your personal experience, explain why liberals are so reluctant to face up to the dangerous threat from Islamic terrorism.

3). How many card-carrying Communists do you believe are currently in the State Department under the leadership of President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton?

Amusing comments at source: http://www.politicsdaily.com/2010/03/15/texas-textbook-wars-how-conservatives-might-teach-history/

PoliCon
03-16-2010, 10:41 PM
I plan to print these and distribute them to certain of my colleagues just to see the reactions on their faces! :D

noonwitch
03-17-2010, 08:11 AM
If that's really what's going into the textbooks, it's hardly neutral.

Rebel Yell
03-17-2010, 08:14 AM
If that's really what's going into the textbooks, it's hardly neutral.

The pendulum has swung.

Gingersnap
03-17-2010, 08:49 AM
If that's really what's going into the textbooks, it's hardly neutral.

It's not - that's an imaginary exercise in what a lot of Conservatives would like to see in textbooks. :D

FlaGator
03-17-2010, 08:57 AM
It's not - that's an imaginary exercise in what a lot of Conservatives would like to see in textbooks. :D

That's an imaginary exercise in what a lot of Liberals think that Conservatives would like to see in textbooks...

Gingersnap
03-17-2010, 09:00 AM
That's an imaginary exercise in what a lot of Liberals think that Conservatives would like to see in textbooks...

I dunno, I kind of liked the study questions about FDR. :D

PoliCon
03-17-2010, 09:58 AM
I dunno, I kind of liked the study questions about FDR. :D

I left this article with a certain colleague of mine. I can't wait to get her reaction! :D

AmPat
03-17-2010, 12:04 PM
If that's really what's going into the textbooks, it's hardly neutral.

Only needs to be true and educational. Neutrality isn't a required factor.

noonwitch
03-17-2010, 12:20 PM
I dunno, I kind of liked the study questions about FDR. :D

The one about the memorial was good, but it would be better to put it under the "political correctness" category, than making it about liberals. Conservatives have their own variety of political correctness, and I think the use of the acronym RINO makes that very clear.

It could be tied into a great classroom discussion about a lot of things, including idiots who deny the Holocaust, or who think Stalin was a benevolent leader of the people.

Megaguns91
03-17-2010, 12:26 PM
I'd have loved to be a kid in school if books were actually "nuetral" instead of the crap filled books that we were usually assigned to buy that promoted the liberal agenda. I felt like every paper I had to write in every history/english class I took was a complete lie opposing my conservative beliefs but I felt that if I failed to reciprocate that garbage that was being shoved down our throats that I wouldn't have done well enough in school.

I feel bad for kids now. Everything is "feel good". There's no black and white anymore.

AmPat
03-17-2010, 12:29 PM
The one about the memorial was good, but it would be better to put it under the "political correctness" category, than making it about liberals. Conservatives have their own variety of political correctness, and I think the use of the acronym RINO makes that very clear.

It could be tied into a great classroom discussion about a lot of things, including idiots who deny the Holocaust, or who think Stalin was a benevolent leader of the people.

I'd settle for the REAL story of Che. I'm sick of looking at this murderer's face on all these idiot kid's clothing.

linda22003
03-17-2010, 12:44 PM
Too bad you didn't include the title: :D

"To help them along, here are two excerpts from an imaginary (but just you wait) high school American history textbook titled "God-Given Greatness: Fifty Stars, Thirteen Stripes, One Language and One Religion."

linda22003
03-17-2010, 12:45 PM
I'd have loved to be a kid in school if books were actually "nuetral"

Parents are happy enough these days if their kids leave school knowing how to spell "neutral". ;)

Megaguns91
03-17-2010, 01:13 PM
Parents are happy enough these days if their kids leave school knowing how to spell "neutral". ;)

Haha oops. :p

Constitutionally Speaking
03-17-2010, 06:46 PM
If that's really what's going into the textbooks, it's hardly neutral.


It isn't, but it's political opposite IS what is currently being taught - and worded pretty much identically - except of course the bad players are Republicans.

noonwitch
03-18-2010, 08:22 AM
I'd settle for the REAL story of Che. I'm sick of looking at this murderer's face on all these idiot kid's clothing.



I have no problem with that. Blame Andrew Lloyd Weber. It's his fault for making Che the good guy narrator in Evita:D.