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Year Published: 1999
754 pages
Chapter Summaries
Excerpt from Foreword:

Charlotte Iserbyt [has] put together the most formidable and practical compilation of documentation describing the “deliberate dumbing down” of American children by their education system. Anyone interested in the truth will be shocked by the way American social engineers have systematically gone about destroying the intellect of millions of American children…

Mrs. Iserbyt has also documented the gradual transformation of our once academically successful education system into one devoted to training children to become compliant human resources to be used by government and industry for their own purposes…

The reader will find in this book a plethora of information that will leave no doubt in the mind of the serious researcher exactly where the American education system is headed.

Excerpts from Preface:

For over a twenty-five-year period the research used in this chronology has been collected from many sources: the United States Department of Education; international agencies; state agencies; the media; concerned educators; parents; legislators, and talented researchers with whom I have worked…

Since most Americans believe… that providing basic educational proficiencies is not and should not be an expensive proposition—it becomes obvious that it is only a radical agenda, the purpose of which is to change values and attitudes (brainwash), that is the costly agenda. In other words, brainwashing by our schools and universities is what is bankrupting our nation and our children’s minds…

Multiply the number of students by the per pupil expenditure… for a total K–12 budget per year of $293.7 billion dollars. If one adds the cost of higher education to this figure, one arrives at a total budget per year of over half a trillion dollars [in "1996 constant dollars"].

The desire by “resisters” to prove their case has been so strong that they have continued to amass—over a thirty- to fifty-year period—what must surely amount to tons of materials containing irrefutable proof, in the education change agents’ own words, of deliberate, malicious intent to achieve behavioral changes in students/parents/society which have nothing to do with commonly understood educational objectives. 

This… collection of research in book form, was put together primarily to satisfy my own need to see the various components which led to the dumbing down of the United States of America assembled in chronological order—in writing. Even I, who had observed these weird activities taking place at all levels of government, was reluctant to accept a malicious intent behind each individual, chronological activity or innovation, unless I could connect it with other, similar activities taking place at other times. This book… makes such connections…

People write important books about war: books documenting the battles fought, the names of the generals involved, the names of those who fired the first shot. This book is simply a history book about another kind of war: 
  • one fought using psychological methods;
  • a one-hundred-year war;
  • a different, more deadly war than any in which our country has ever been involved;
  • a war about which the average American hasn’t the foggiest idea. 
The reason Americans do not understand this war is because it has been fought in secret—in the schools of our nation, targeting our children who are captive in classrooms.

The author also here quotes a statement made by T.H. Bell when he was U.S. Secretary of Education: "[We] need to create a crisis to get consensus in order to bring about change."

She also describes the process by which change agents dupe parents into transferring local school funding to state/federal funding, so that the parents no longer control their children's education, and thereby making it possible for them to implement "federal/internationalist goal of implementing global workforce training through the schools."

This war has, in fact, become the war to end all wars. If citizens on this planet can be brainwashed or robotized, using dumbed-down Pavlovian/Skinnerian education, to accept what those in control want, there will be no more wars. If there are no rights or wrongs, there will be no one wanting to “right” a “wrong.”

Much of this book contains quotes from government documents detailing the real purposes of American education: 
  • to use the schools to change America from a free, individual nation to a socialist, global “state,” just one of many socialist states which will be subservient to the United Nations Charter, not the United States Constitution 
  • to brainwash our children, starting at birth, to reject individualism in favor of collectivism 
  • to reject high academic standards in favor of OBE/ISO 1400/90007 egalitarianism 
  • to reject truth and absolutes in favor of tolerance, situational ethics and consensus 
  • to reject American values in favor of internationalist values (globalism) 
  • to reject freedom to choose one’s career in favor of the totalitarian K–12 school-to-work/OBE process, aptly named “limited learning for lifelong labor,” coordinated through United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. [UNESCO]

Excerpt from Acknowledgments:

In particular I want to thank a handful of government officials who provided me with important documents. They must remain anonymous for obvious reasons.

Summary of the Introduction:

The author of the introduction, Sarah Leslie, begins by describing the well-known “lifeboat in crisis” activity that many public school students have been subjected to. She points out that such "Lifeboat exercises epitomize the shift in education from academic education… to values education.…" The author documents this shift, as well as the subsequent shift to "workforce training 'education'… The mind of the average American became “trained” (conditioned) to accept the idea that education exists solely for the purpose of getting a good paying job in the global workforce economy."

She next discusses the term "human capital," which "implies that humans are expendable," and points out the connection between such "death education" in the classroom and violence like the school shooting in Littleton, Colorado.

She mentions that the book's author uses "extensive documentation" to "skillfully [demonstrate] the interconnections between the international, national, regional, state and local plans for the transformation of American society via education."

It is here pointed out that psychologist B.F. Skinner was ignored while others were publicly denounced, the effect of which is that his teachings are alive and well within modern education, and that many modern teaching methodologies are based on something he came up with in the 1960's, called "Programmed Instruction—a method of instruction which linked children to the computer and turned learning into a flow chart of managed behaviors."

Skinner's methods are actually quite effective, which leads to a discussion in the book over "the ethics of implementing such a method on children." "The late Christian apologist and theologian, Dr. Francis Schaeffer, when discussing the evils of B.F. Skinner in his little booklet Back to Freedom and Dignity (1972), warned: 'Within the Skinnerian system there are no ethical controls; there is no boundary limit to what can be done by the elite in whose hands control resides.'"

It is next mentioned that "popular computer games, programs, and curricula for children are heavily dependent upon [Skinner's] method—a method which requires immediate rewards."

We learn that most of the dumbing down programs described in the book have come out of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Educational Research and Improvement, where Charlotte Iserbyt was senior policy advisor.
It should be noted that B.F. Skinner's method of providing immediate rewards to manipulate and control students is very much alive and well nearly everywhere you turn today, known currently as "gamification."

The Introduction ends with a paragraph describing a teacher who has thirty students. The teacher makes $25,000 per year, but the school gets $9,000 per student, totaling $270,000. The Introduction's author mentions that this discrepancy will be explained in the book. It is very interesting, though, isn't it? And yet, we hear, year-after-year, calls for higher pay for teachers and increased funding for schools.

The Mormon Angle

As we begin to touch on the concept of corrupting a people and their culture through corrupt education, we should consider that such a thing also occurred in The Book of Mormon, in Mosiah 24.

We all remember the wicked King Noah who had the prophet Abinadi burned at the stake, but we often forget Amulon, who was Noah's chief priest. After King Noah was overthrown, Amulon led the priests who escaped into the land of the Lamanites. He befriended the king of the Lamanites, "therefore, the king of the Lamanites granted unto him and his brethren that they should be appointed teachers over his people."

This resulted in the children being taught "language," "trade," record-keeping, writing, and "the wisdom of the world," but "nevertheless they knew not God; neither did the brethren of Amulon teach them anything concerning the Lord their God, neither the law of Moses; nor did they teach them the words of Abinadi."

Alma, who had been a fellow priest under Noah but repented after hearing Abinadi, was living with other members of the church in the land of the Lamanites, so Amulon was able to use his control to persecute them, even making it illegal to pray, under pain of death.

President John Taylor said: "I would rather have my children taught the simple rudiments of a common education by men of God and have them under their influence, than have them taught by men who have not the fear of God in their hearts."[1]

Why? Because men, in their pride, begin to believe that they know better than God, as illustrated throughout this book.


[1] As quoted in "Revealed Educational Principles" by Jack Monnett, pg 48.
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