Sunday, February 02, 2014

hoping...

I was hoping to put the SWEPCO power line issue behind me for a few days while I attend my brother in law's funeral in Florida, but things keep happening fast.

AEP/SWEPCO has begun a telephone survey in my county to find out how we feel about their monstrous proposal. No doubt, they will try to use it for monstrous purposes, but if they'd been listening, they would have known already and would have abandoned the project before doing such damage to their own reputations and credibility.

 The stupidity and arrogance of American corporations can be mind boggling.
“Deep in our own nature the biological foundations of our consciousness persist, undisguised and undiminished. Our sensations are here to attract us or to deter us, our memories to warn or encourage us, our feelings to impel, and our thoughts to restrain our behavior, so that on the whole we may prosper and our days be long in the land. Whatever of transmundane metaphysical insight or of practically inapplicable ├Žsthetic perception or ethical sentiment we may carry in our interiors might at this rate be regarded as only part of the incidental excess of function that necessarily accompanies the working of every complex machine. I shall ask you now—not meaning at all thereby to close the theoretic question, but merely because it seems to me the point of view likely to be of greatest practical use to you as teachers—to adopt with me, in this course of lectures, the biological conception, as thus expressed, and to lay your own emphasis on the fact that man, whatever else he may be, is primarily a practical being, whose mind is given him to aid in adapting him to this world's life.” -- William James. Talks To Teachers On Psychology; And To Students On Some Of Life's Ideals, 1899.
By divorcing our students attention from the natural world that once surrounded them, we leave them out of touch, not only with the world itself held intellectually at bay, but having deprived them of  the capacity to understand themselves within it. Kindergarten was not just about the gifts and occupations. It was also about engagement in nature, and in understanding the gifts of providence that must be held sacred. Children were to learn their own capacities interconnectedness with all life through the gifts of story, music, gardening, and through engagement in the natural world and in community. They would become integrated into higher purpose and respect for community, the nation, the environment and each other.

By neglecting these things, we get to the point at which a huge American corporation like AEP/SWEPCO can propose projects that are destructive of the communities they affect and self-destructive in that all common folks, with any form of self-respect and understanding rise up against them. Making objects of useful beauty was the means that early educators discovered to be an ideal education in which children developed both character and intellect. The message is a simple one and that I repeat.

 Make, fix, create and help others to do likewise...

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