American (mis)education

It’s crap like this that makes me qualify Americans like idiots. UTTER HOPELESS IDIOTS! Now don’t get me wrong, I’m pretty sure some US folks would (and probably will, really soon now) complain loud and bitterly about this. But how does an entire nation get to the point of allowing their education system to be subdued and subverted by corporations?!

Pro-copyright lobbyists and anti-piracy outfits have a clear idea of what is needed to manipulate the minds of the younger generations. The MPAA most famously handed out a “merit patch in respecting copyright” to LA Boy Scouts, and now the Copyright Alliance has entered US classrooms in an attempt to educate today’s youth about the benefits of copyright.

For all the reasons this is bad, the worse is that the value of good education should be, more than the gathering of knowledge, the gathering of critical thought skills: for as knowledge might eventually be forgotten, the skill of being able and willing to think critically, once learned, remains (and indeed, keeps improving as one uses it again and again) for the rest of one’s life. Thus, I quote the end of the above quoted article:

[. . .] kids should be taught to think critically so they can make up their own minds instead of being brainwashed with pro (or anti) copyright propaganda.

In all my intellectual humbleness, I can only speculate on why prefering to “spoon-feed” US youngsters with all this “copyright is good” rubbish instead of doing the right thing, viz. providing the students with the facts about copyright. And I think that’s because if they tried to do so and argue in favour of copyright, even the most intellectually challenged students would be able to see through the hollowness of such argumentation, that copyright has outlived its usefulness. But that also means that if you draw a salary from copyright related activities, you’re boned. Traditionally, when such a thing happens, you either adapt, or change to a different business. This is seldom done without a fight, which is a natural reaction: nobody likes to be put out of business. But to go as far as to (ab)use the education system to protect their industry (or any other industry or business, for that matter) is nothing short of unacceptable, and any teacher or education responsible that thinks otherwise does not deserve to be in office. On normal circumstances, I would hope for the government to step in and stop this lunacy, but given some of the past positions of the current US Vice-President, I doubt anything of the sort takes place any time soon.

I’ve already explained why the so called intellectual property is a baseless concept. But intellectual property broadly encompasses not only copyright law, but also trademarks and patents, which are not the issue here. Maybe a more detailed explanation on my stance on copyright is in order. I’ve stated that one must first get the facts, and then discuss and argue based on them. Let’s see how long it takes to follow my own advice.

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