Obama and the College Indoctrination Conspiracy – UPDATED w/ Video

Obama knows college is necessary for a strong America“President Obama wants everybody in America to go to college,” Santorum said. “What a snob!”  He continues with:  “Not all folks are gifted the same way. Some people have incredible gifts with their hands.”  Yeah, and some people are extremely gifted basket weavers, but there probably aren’t a lot of jobs out there for them.  The term, ‘good with their hands’, is a statement that triggers me because all too often teachers have told children of color, especially African American males, that they were not college material but that they were “good with their hands”.  Santorum elaborated on his issues with President Obama’s edict, that all who want to go to college should be able to afford it, by explaining that there are alterior motives to our president’s statement.  Santorum suggests that what the president is really after is to turn all of our children in to librals and he proves this by stating some obscure study which concludes that “62 percent of kids who enter college with some sort of faith commitment leave without it.”

So let’s deal with both of these issues.  First, that everyone does not need to go to college because some are “good with their hands” and secondly, that college influences folks to loose their faith.

DOES COLLEGE MAKE KIDS LOOSE THEIR FAITH?

I decided to read a few of the more recent studies that Santorum might have quoted. TPM called the Santorum campaign to get the source, but as of this publishing they had not returned the call.  The study that comes closest to supporting his theory reads:

In conclusion, the college experience—more than the education itself—seems corrosive to religious faith only among those who were at an elevated risk of such corrosion when they arrived on campus.College does not make students loose their religion

So the  study suggests that it is the freedoms of college life and the ability to do things that may not have been permitted at home by their parents that leads to young adults questioning the tenants of their faith.  Moreover, the study proposes that, regardless of whether one goes to college or not, young adults in general tend to begin questioning their faith and/or researching other faiths.

I’M GOOD WITH MY HANDS

50 years ago the public education system assumed that less than 20% of its students would continue on to college.  And the high school system was designed to prepare students who were “good with their hands” by offering courses in automobile mechanics, shop, sewing, etc.  Not only have those classes disappeared from the course offerings, the jobs have disappeared too.  Technology has created a system where an emphasis on manual labor has declined drastically and it will only intensify over the next decade.  As a matter of fact Reuters suggests that our technological capabilities will increase by over 30 fold by 2020.  A society that believes it can succeed on a Obama wants to make technical training affordable and relevantminimally skilled labor force will be committing itself to 3rd world status.  Considering the following from Forbes:

Automation technology will continue to hit hardest in the areas where we have come to expect it: the manufacturing sector and low-wage, unskilled jobs of all types. Yet the reality is that by 2020 we will also see increasing penetration of automation into occupations that require significant training and college degrees. The six-figure knowledge workers who now inhabit oceans of corporate cubicles will be heavily threatened by software automation and specialized artificial intelligence applications that can perform many of the routine tasks and analyses that occupy their days.

Now consider that what we have seen over the last 2 decades will not compare to the 30x increase we will see over this decade.  We would be terribly naive to believe that college and/or technical training for most of our citizens isn’t an economic imperative

OBAMA IS ENGAGING IN SNOBBERY

Quite the contrary, he seems to be the only one of the presidential contenders who actually cares about the future of our children and this nation.  He appears to be the only one who realizes that our children will be subjected to less than a working class living if they do not get at least specialized technical training.  Which is exactly what he stated in the State of the Union address.  The suggestion that President Obama wants everyone to get a 4-year degree is a lie.  What he did say is that he wants everyone who wants to get a 4-year degree to be able to afford to get it.

More importantly, it is Santorum’s unearned white privilege that allows him to speak about the necessity of higher education so cavalierly.  It is white privilege that allows him not to know that a black man with a 4-year degree and a clean record will not get an interview over a white male with only a high school diploma and a criminal record.  And while latent racism compels teachers to overwhelmingly tell black and brown children that they are not college material but that they are  good with their hands – Santorum is pandering to the idiotic thought process that drives poor whites to vote against their own interest so long as people of color get hurt in the process.   African Americans cannot afford to indulge in conspiracies that college is about indoctrination.  And poor whites can’t either.

Obama wants to make college more affordable

WHAT JOBS WILL BE AVAILABLE IN THE NEXT DECADE?

Lists vary from source to source.  I’m going to list a couple that I found that come from a legitimate source.

  1. Physical Therapists
  2. Occupational Therapists
  3. Assistant Managers – Retail and Restaurant.
  4. Managers – Financial Products, and Restaurant/Food Service.
  5. Family Practice and Internal Medicine Physicians
  6. Sales Associates/Salespeople
  7. Tax Preparers and Accountants
  8. Sales Managers and Sales Representatives
  9. Registered Nurses (RNs) – includes Travel Nursing
  10. Project Managers – Largely IT related; Domestic and International Business, private, government, and government contractor.

Job titles that appear on both lists are in bold type.

Arranged by Percentage of Growth over previous figures, High to Low:

  1. Biomedical Engineers - At least a Bachelors Degree.
  2. Network Systems and Data Communications Analysts – Bachelors Degree (many companies require graduate degrees, however in “real life”). This position will increase in importance and numbers, because IT cuts across all job fields in the 2010s. Look for it to explode with new jobs.
  3. Home Health Aides(HHAs) - HHA Certificate or On the Job Training under a licensed supervisor.
  4. Personal/Home Care Aides - On the Job Training, but many and community colleges are offering training and certifications.
  5. Financial Examiners - Bachelors Degree. although many job descriptions require a Masters.
  6. Medical Scientists - Doctorate.
  7. Physician’s Assistants – Masters Degree level (not all hospitals and doctors require this much education for assistants working in private practice, but a licensed MD or DO needs to be on site).
  8. Skin Care Specialists - Vocational Certificate. This is a non-medical position, but one that is often offered within the workings of a medical practice.
  9. Biochemists/Biophysicists – Doctorate
  10. Athletic Trainers – Bachelor Degree and above.

Arranged by Actual Numbers of Increasing Jobs, High to Low:

  1. Registered Nurses - Associate Degree or 3-year degree (RN) – Some positions require the BSN.
  2. Home Health Aides (HHA) - see above
  3. Customer Service Representatives – Moderate-length and ongoing training.
  4. Combined Food Prep-Service Workers – Like fast food, concessions, etc. - Usually trained at work.
  5. Personal/Home Care Aides - see above
  6. Retail Salespersons – Trained at work, but certifications are avaiabel in some communities.
  7. General Office Clerks – Same as for Rertail Sales above.
  8. Accountants/Auditors – Bachelors Degree at least. Forensic Accounting is growing very quickly.
  9. Nursing Aides (CNAs), Orderlies, Attendants – Usually require Vocational Certificates and ongoing training at work.
  10. Postsecondary Teachers (College Level) – Doctorate

(from  http://pattyinglishms.hubpages.com/hub/Top-10-Hot-Careers-to-2010)

 The Kiplinger Article Top 10 Careers to 2020
  1. Federal Government Managers- Some of these jobs already appeared in top job listings on Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com in 2009, but disappeared by 2010.
  2. Higher-Education Administrators – Because professionals are working longer into the lifespan, this position may not emerge as a high demand job by 2020. However, the number of career academies and vocational schools providing certificates for 2 years or less of study may increase in the US. Stimulus Funding dollars spent to expand colleges, vocational schools, and universities may create such a need. A larger amount of funding seems to be going to educational R&D, with resulting new jobs and products.
  3. Program Evaluators – Increased numbers of government programs require program evaluators and compliance officers to monitor government funding and the results achieved on the federal, state, county, and local levels. My experience is that with each change of US President, these jobs either increase or decrease for the next 4 or 8 years.
  4. Corporate Executives in Global Business Development or Global Workforces (International business). The recommended languages to know areMandarin (a Chinese language), Hindi, Bengali, Russian, Portuguese, Arabic,and Farsi. Chinese is expected, because of US financial borrowing from China and related future development, along with China’s growth in International Business. Russian was a big language to know in the 1960s-1980s, and then fell out of celebrity — More dealing with the Russian government and business sectors is expected 2010 – 2020. Many US corporations have offices and workforces in Arab nations as well.
  5. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists - Reportedly, this is the only type of Mental Health treatment that the new insurance system for America after 2012 will support. My experiences in providing treatment did not find this type to be the most effective for most patients. However, some applications of it are simpler and cheaper than all other Mental Health Treatments. My worst experience surrounding this treatment was listening to a psychologist tell a back-injured Workers Compensation client about reported back pain, “Your back does not hurt, so you have no pain.” It was a very short treatment session, with very little further conversation and the patient was angry. It was a misapplication of the treatment, but you get my point – this therapy can be minimal and ineffective in some cases.
  6. Immigration Experts – This many be an imminent increase with the focus on legalizing undocumented workers.
  7. Researchers - Government funded topics involve physics, math, biology, engineering, and computer science (CIS). This is to be expected with the advance of Medical and Bio-engineering, privatized space flight, and other fields. Major Universities and businesses across America are already advertising Research Scientist positions. High School Curricula are promoting these lines of study as well.
  8. Health-Informatics Specialists – This involves the National Medical Database as well as increasing patient activity generated by an aging American population. it takes a legion of workers to construct and maintain such a national database, and it may not come to fruition.
  9. Optometrists - An increase in the need for these professionals likely has to do with an aging population and a need for piots in thre military and privite aviation and aeronautics field.
  10. Genetic Counselors – This directly involves looking for genetically based diseases and conditions in order to repair damage, prevent or end conception, or treat patients more fully. However, there is a trend in clients’ desire for wishing to design babies according to specific genetic information. This is not yet possible in the 2010s. (yikes, not sure I like the implications of this one)
All of the above-mentioned careers requires at least a 2-year degree.  Jobs that do not require some specialized training will not pay a wage above working-class.  And for those jobs that pay well but have on the job training, e.g. sanitation worker, they get a decent wage because they are unionized.  And of course if the GOP has their way they will not be unionized and the wages for such Obama wants to make college affordablepositions will go down to the same wage that retail workers get.   Civil servant careers that still pay a middle class wage such as firefighting and law enforcement for the most part still only require a high school diploma.  However, they are union jobs and there is little chance for officer advancement without some higher education.  Once again, these jobs and their unions are under attack by the GOP.
In the end, in order for the United States’ economy to soar we need a well-educated workforce.  For the GOP to deny this fact means they are not interested in the United States success or they’re living in an alternate universe.  President Obama is absolutely correct in his stance in making college more affordable and in creating an environment that lends itself to a more skilled labor force.

UPDATE

Now consider this:  The March 2012 edition of the Harvard Business Review sites a study by Eric Hanushek which measures k-12 test scores to GDP growth.

He found that if one country’s scores were only 1/2 a standard deviation higher than another in 1960, its GDP grew a full percentage point faster in every subsequent year through 2000.

The article further explains that if the US had closed the education achievement gap, the 2010 GDP should have been 8-14% higher!  Not fixing our schools could lead to “the economic equivalent of a permanent national recession.”  If in 20 years 1/2 of the nations people are people of color and the education gap between whites and people of color continues, the catastrophic economic implications are clear.

UPDATE II

In case you missed the video – here it is – you can’t make this stuff up, folks.

Is the Contraceptive Debate Really About White Man’s Fear?

UPDATE: Watch this video of prominent Republican’s quotes. What is this War on Women really about?

I was watching Rachel Maddow interview Speaker Pelosi and they were discussing the crap that’s masquerading as legislation down in Virginia.  For those few people who haven’t been paying attention, I’m talking about the GOP’s attempt to move towards Why white men are banning contraceptionbanning abortion by making women take vaginal penetrating ultrasounds prior to receiving an abortion.  This is for all patients, including rape victims.  Speaker Pelosi said something interesting; she said, “what we are really talking about is contraception”.  She continued by saying (paraphrase) we’re talking about the right of husbands and wives to plan when they will start a family and when they will not.

Why would White men (after all the congressional panel on contraception last week was all male with one black male) want to take away the right for women to have control over when they do and do not have children?  Contraception has been legal for my entire lifetime.  Why now 2-3 adult generations later?  If contraception were illegal what would America look like?

Before I answer that question consider this.  The Census Bureau now estimates, that by the year 2019 – 7 short years away, the majority of Americans under the age of 18 will be people of color.  Over the last decade the number of white children under the age of 18 fell by 10% while the number of children of color grew by 36%.  Whites, as a whole, will be outnumbered by 2041.  Which should be within my lifetime.  Add to that, we have an African American as President of the United States; which will most likely be the president until 2016.  3 years away from when white children slip into the minority.

Now let’s consider a United States, where contraception is illegal.  Let’s assume for the sake of argument that most Americans will not try and get contraception from Canada, etc.      What I imagine is an America where the average family has between 5-7 babies and Why white men want to eliminate contraceptionfamilies of 10 or 11 children would be common again…among all races.  So, if today, contraception were made illegal, in 2019 white children would probably still be in the majority.  And 2041 would turn into 2141 or some other utopian date.

So, could all of the hullabaloo over contraception really be about white men finally feeling threatened by the inevitablity that they are loosing control of their majority in this country? I remember Senator John McCain in an interview with Bill O’Reilly prior to the 2008 election.  Bill O’Reilly said that we must maintain, “the White Christian male power-structure” and McCain agreed.   Could this be there way to take women back out of the workplace and put them back in the kitchen and on the birthing tables to produce more white babies?  Could this be their last ditch effort to preserve the White Christian male power structure?

Tell me what you think?

 

 

Religion and Politics: What would Jesus Do?

President Obama & Family @ Christ the Redeemer Statue - Brazil

President Barack Obama is a Christian.  But, better than that, he stands for Christian values. Anyone can call themselves a Christian, but everyone who thumps a Bible and shouts hallelujah is NOT necessarily a Christian.  Matthew 7:15 warns us to “watch out for false prophets” and further explains that, “by their fruit you will recognize them”.  In other words judge by actions and results.

PRESERVING THE EARTH

According to an AP article, Former Senator Rick Santorum espouses that Obama is engaged in a “phony theology, not a theology based on the Bible.”  Sentorum describes Obama as a “radical environmentalist”.  And I guess that today’s version of a journalist is someone who just repeats what a person says.  They’re obviously in no way responsible for letting their readers know that what the person said is a lie.  So, let’s see what the Bible says about environmentalism.

Who’s Planet is it?

First off, as a Christian we must admit that this planet belongs to the Lord and we are merely stewards of it.  Deuteronomy 10:14 reads, “Go,” the LORD said to me, “and lead the people on their way, so that they may enter and possess the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.”   Psalms 24:1-2 reads: “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;..”  One can give only what one owns.

How does God Want us to Treat the Planet?

Stewardship is defined by Dictionary.com as: the responsible overseeing and protection of something considered worth caring for and preserving.  So God gave us stewardship over the earth and by definition that means to protect and preserve it.  Genesis 1:15 reads: “…The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it…”  One can assume that he meant us not to just take care of the Garden of Eden but the whole planet!  Not only that, nature is a reflection of God.  Romans 1:10 reads, “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made…”

What Will Happen to Those who Destroy the Planet?

Santorum is sadly mistaken and has decided to believe the disinformation of the Republican party, instead of the information that is in the Book that he claims to hold so dear.  In Revelations 11:18 the Word reads: “…The time has come for judging the dead,
and for rewarding your servants the prophets…and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”    That’s right God said he WILL DESTROY THOSE WHO DESTROY THE EARTH!

Summary:  God is environmentalist and will destroy those who destroy the earth.

THE SAFETY NET & ENTITLEMENTS

Republicans are real big on individual responsibility. (Except when it comes to women’s health, then they want to dictate.  But that’s another post for another time.)  They don’t believe in social responsibility nor the notion that government should help individuals.  If it weren’t for government mandates, African Americans would still be subject to forced labor camps, overt discrimination, and no ability to have a say in this nation’s affairs.  However, let’s see what the Bible says about this subject.  Both Willard Mitt Romney and Santorum have boasted of their religious creds; so lets see if they’re aligned with the Word.

Even a creaster (someone who only goes to church on Christmas and Easter ;D) could knock this one out of the park.  I’m going to give one of my favorites.  Matthew 25:35-40 reads, “…For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’… ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’…  So, Jesus says that helping out those less fortunate is equivalent to helping Him out.  Somehow the Republicans have decided that financial wealth is evidence of a persons moral superiority and God’s grace.  Of course if they believe that, then they must believe the opposite.  That financial struggles is evidence of moral issues and God’s punishment.  Neither premise is necessarily true or false.  But what is true is that God expects us to look after those in need.

I challenge all progressive Christians to call out those who are perverting God’s Word.  There are those out there looking for something to believe in and it does our community no good to allow Republicans to usurp Christianity and turn it into this dogmatic, legalistic, paternalistic corruption of the truth!