Most of what’s taught in schools these days is propaganda, and history classes may be the worst offender. From Ryan McMaken at mises.org:
An Illinois politicians wants the state board of education to get rid of history classes until the curriculum can be made less racist. The local NBC affiliate reports:
Leaders in education, politics and other areas gathered in suburban Evanston Sunday to ask that the Illinois State Board of Education change the history curriculum at schools statewide, and temporarily halt instruction until an alternative is decided upon….
Before the event Sunday, Rep. Ford’s office distributed a news release “Rep. Ford Today in Evanston to Call for the Abolishment of History Classes in Illinois Schools,” in which Ford asked the ISBOE and school districts to immediately remove history curriculum and books that “unfairly communicate” history “until a suitable alternative is developed.”
There are both good ideas and bad ideas here.
First of all, it’s unclear in what way exactly history as taught in Illinois—as critics put it—”overlook[s] the contributions of women and minorities”
In practice, history as taught in most schools overlooks the good deeds of a wide variety of good people—not just ones who are women or members of certain ethnic groups. The usual history curriculum focuses overwhelmingly on politicians, military personnel and other government employees, who are supposedly the people who make the most important contributions, and allegedly make life livable for the rest of us. The private sector is generally ignored, including all the entrepreneurs, workers, business owners and managers who actually did the hard work of improving the lives and standards of living of countless human beings. Whenever business owners are mentioned, its usually as some sort of evil “robber baron” or similar caricature. If workers are mentioned, it is only nonspecific workers in a Marxian context.
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The chances are greater that a camel will pass through the eye of a needle than that a central bank will maintain an honest currency. From Jacob G. Hornberger at fff.org:
In response to the potential economic downturn in the economy arising from the spread of the Coronavirus, the Federal Reserve dropped the federal funds rate by half a point — to a range of 1% to 1.25%. Ironically, after the Fed’s announcement, the stock market dropped 786 points or 2.9%.
The Fed’s aim is to stimulate economic activity. By lowering interest rates, the idea is to get businesses to expand operations with more loans and to get consumers to go deeper into debt by purchasing more items.
The result of the Fed’s artificial economic “boost” will be the same as it has been since the Fed was established in 1913: a bubble of malinvestment and consumer loan defaults that will end up plunging the country in a bubble-bursting recession or even depression.
That’s because genuine prosperity in a country cannot be generated by central bank manipulations. If that were the case, every country on earth would be characterized by ever-growing standards of living. In fact, a central bank does the exact opposite — it lowers a nation’s standard of living through its artificial manipulations of interest rates and its expansion and contraction of the money supply.
The never-ending cycle of monetary crises and chaos shouldn’t surprise anyone. The Federal Reserve is a socialist institution, in that it is based on the socialist concept of central planning. A central bank consists of a board of government commissars who have the responsibility of planning the monetary affairs of hundreds of millions of people.
It cannot be done. Socialism is an inherently defective economic system. It produces monetary crises and chaos, which is what we have seen in the United States since the Fed was established in 1913.
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