On Wednesday, Ryan Grim, Washington bureau chief for The Huffington Post, issued a press release breathlessly pumping an article that, he promised and swore, exposes plans hatched by Charles and David Koch to “foist” their “worldview on public school students.”
How do the Koch brothers propose to accomplish such foisting? In the HuffPo piece, which at about 4,800 words (not including a quiz) runs nearly 20 percent longer (and more boring) than Edgar Allen Poe’s famous short story “The Black Cat,” two daring reporters explain that the plan is to teach “predominantly poor students” at Highland Park High School in Topeka, Kan. — wait for it — “basic economic principles.”
On top of this nefarious instruction, the students then have the opportunity to receive filthy Koch lucre “including startup capital and scholarships.”
Grim eagerly points to a sample question from a quiz that is part of the Koch brothers-created material. “True or false,” the dastardly quiz question says: “Teaching people how to ‘fish’ and catch their own food is symbolic of creating opportunities for entrepreneurs so that they can create jobs for others too.”
But wait! There’s more. So much more. So many more words.
The Highland Park High course and other courses like it have been run by a fiendish nonprofit outfit established and financed mainly by Charles G. Koch ominously called Youth Entrepreneurs. Teachers on school staffs have taught the course. School district superintendents and other tools of the corporatist, property-owning one percent have willfully allowed the courses to occur.
According to the conspiracy theorists at HuffPo, “the underlying goal of the program” is not merely to help students understand business. Far from it, bourgeois rube!
Instead, the goal “is to impart Koch’s radical free-market ideology to teenagers.” And indeed, terrifyingly, this capitalist brainwashing has already “reached more than 1,000 students across Kansas and Missouri.”
To better put that shocking number of students in perspective, it’s one student for every $315,000 the owners of the Huffington Post received in 2011 when they sold their website to AOL for $315 million.
The overall strategy of the plan hatched by Charles Koch is to “infiltrate public schools” with a “free market and liberty-based course,” according to HuffPo.
“The focus on high school students is a key part of the Kochs’ long-term effort to create a libertarian-minded society from the ground up,” the piece scathingly charges.
“We hope to develop students’ appreciation of liberty by improving free-market education,” the creators of the coursework wrote, according to the HuffPo. “Ultimately, we hope this will change the behavior of students who will apply these principles later on in life.”
A couple of the disgusting, soulless lessons about entrepreneurialism in the Koch course include a sinister “invention game” and a truly frightening segment on “developing your business idea.”