Monday, November 01, 2010

election day

Tomorrow, Tuesday, November 2, 2010 is election day, and millions who have not already voted will be headed for the polls. An equal number, discouraged by politics and bred to complaisance by public education and the sense that they are without power will stay home and not vote.

In the early days of manual training, it was thought that working with your hands in school regardless of your career objectives was preparation for democracy. It helped those who would not work with their hands to have a greater respect for the dignity and intelligence of all labor. It was seen to help those who did work with their hands to do so with greater confidence and intelligence, that would have impact on the full range of their participation in human culture.

Sadly, we abandoned those principles. Without laboratories and work shops in schools, students are confined and constrained without power and their advancement is dependent on their adjusting to it's structure. Belief becomes a matter of what we are told rather than a consequence of personal hands-on investigation.

It is interesting to watch, but presents a discouraging view of humanity as politicians squabble to gain greater power and voters are to easily persuaded to act against their own interests and intelligence.

So, just watch. If we see a major display of idiocy at the polls, I and a few of my readers will understand the cause of it, and mourn the loss of hands-on learning in American education.

Today I am working on my small cherry display cabinet, and as you can see, it has been glued and clamped. Tomorrow I'll fit the hinges in the doors.  Clear Spring School is off this week for fall  break and the ISACS conference.  If you have not voted already, please do so tomorrow! Did you know that the US added more manufacturing sector jobs in the last six months than in the last 10 years combined? Not a hard statistic to reach when you realize the massive loss of manufacturing employment during the Bush administration.


  1. Anonymous7:17 PM

    "what would constitute a "major display of idiocy?" Enquiring foreigners want to know. . . !

  2. For the working poor to vote for the party that promises tax relief to the rich and promises to end employment benefits, social security and health care for the working man. It's being fooled and manipulated to act against one's own best interests.

  3. I agree...I can't understand why anyone considered "working poor" would vote for a Republican agenda that wants to curtail social security, medicare, and unemployment benefits.

  4. I much appreciate your comments regarding the importance of working with one's hands as a way to develop appreciation for the work of others. I was just reading John Ruskin's "Elements of Drawing," and in this nearly 100-year-old text, he advocates teaching drawing so that the students may appreciate the art of others. It's a much-overlooked point, and one I'm glad you made.