Hey, kid. Stop trying to about that headline right now!

Thinking critically might lead to people questioning politicians and religion and other things that keep them slaves to their masters who know better how to control their lives. Can’t have that!

The Republican Party of Texas’ recently adopted 2012 platform contains a plank that opposes the teaching of “critical thinking skills” in schools. The party says it was a mistake, but is now stuck with the plank until the next state convention in 2014.

The plank in question, on “Knowledge-Based Education,” reads as follows:

We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.



  1. UncDon says:

    There was an anthology TV show once where in one segment, a child has to take a government test. His parents are terribly anxious, hoping he’d watch TV all day rather than read books. On the day of the test, the child drinks a truth serum so he won’t lie or cheat on the test. After a bit of time, the parents receive a phone call and are told the horrifying news: their child has passed the test and … would they like cremation services or private burial?

  2. ReadyKilowatt says:

    Everyone I’ve ever known who was proud of being from Texas liked to point out that TX is a republic and that Sam Huston struck a deal with the US government that said they could leave any time they wanted. I always try to encourage them to leave.

    As for any politician’s position on education, I think it’s more about handing out dollar bills and revisionist history than actually teaching kids. I’m sure the TX Democratic party’s plank is just as bad.

    • NobodySpecial says:

      >I’m sure the TX Democratic party
      I think they found him and shot him

    • Snoitpo says:

      Actually, all that “Texas Republic” stuff was true until Texas actually seceded. When they were re-admitted after “The War of Northern Aggression” they came back under the same rules as everyone else.

  3. dusanmal says:

    Article barely touches on underlying truth: Progressive (Left and Right) forces have taken over education system and in their typical Orwellian machinations have placed labels of “critical thinking” on the “social engineering of the mind” reality. Worse, I experience other consequences of that practice in my teaching further along. Under a guise of “critical thinking”, particularly in Math’ , students are INTENTIONALLY not thought how to solve problems. They are not thought skills. Multiplying the effect is that no one actually teaches them critical thinking. Not only they are not thought the skills but not thought to recognize their own mistakes from the outcome. Because of “fostering of critical thinking and creativity” – whatever they do without training a skill into them was praised, no matter how wrong the outcome.
    So, please stop with the Progressive Spin on this story. Actions demanded are truly needed – call a spade a spade and remove hidden agenda that hurts kids, no matter how sweet the label is – inside is a poison.

    • So what says:

      After reading your post it is clearly obvious you are from Texas.

    • UncDon says:

      “They are not thought skills.”

      Substitute “taught” for “thought”. The words are pronounced differently, with the “th” sound for the latter.

  4. So what says:

    “The party says it was a mistake,” Yes, they failed to hide it appropriately so that it would not be noticed.

  5. bobbo, the ONLY true Libertarian on this blog, all others being dogmatic posers says:

    Just a gaffe: telling the truth. Could have avoided the easy derision if they had added “So Called” or “Falsely Labeled” before identifying the programs name.

    Could have …… but what they are against is in fact just what they say: critical thinking = with the emphasis on critical. Seems in Texas they want to drive their children like they drive their cattle?

    Ha, ha. I’ve never met anyone “from” Texas who wasn’t smarter, kinder, more decent than those who “stay” in Texas. Unique in that manner.

    Silly Texans. Where’s the Beef?

  6. Dallas says:

    You don’t want sheeple to think because thinking sheep may cause herd disruption.

    Imagine if wildebeest started to think and say ‘hey, how about we go in formation, heads down and use our horns ? That fucking lion doesn’t have a chance.”

    Same thing but wildebeest don’t get Internet or are in facebook. Sheeple have ghat power.

  7. MikeN says:

    Outcome based education is a bad liberal fad, and it is good to oppose it.

  8. AdmFubar says:

    HA! None of you are critically thinking.. follow the money… looks like it is time to change the curriculum again as the educational book publishers need more taxpayer $$. has nothing to do with any of the above mentioned “reasons”!

    :P

  9. soundwash says:

    Why do you post this divisive crap without at least identifying it’s true goal(s)?

    For the past 80+ years or so, (i say 120+) the goal of those who control “education” in America has been to ensure that when you leave the edu system, any and all critical and common sense thinking will have been wiped from your brain and replaced with a well honed Pavlovian response system.

    (which in part, wants you to think that the goal of getting a good education is so you can land a great job. ie: be a highly productive serf)
    -nothing more.

    the only thing our education system does is make sure that when you leave it, you excel at regurgitating memorized garbage, or as i like to say, “fictions as fact” -for which of course, you are rewarded a toxic cookie. -if your lucky, you may actually understand 0.1% of what you have merely memorized.

    worse yet, they’ll trick you into being specialist regurgitater in some field, -so you will never be able to see “the big picture” -or even think that you can.

    get a clue, -left, right and center are all equally guilty of perpetuating the worst education system on the planet.

    -a system where you “know everything, yet understand nothing”

    -s

    • So what says:

      Wow, and here I was thinking the education system was a scam to provide retirement funding for teachers.

      • jasontheodd says:

        Retirement funding for teachers is a scam to make profits for the banks that hold old style pension funds where they get to keep a full percent of the earned interest without any risky 401K stock-market nonsense… :)

  10. Glenn E. says:

    Here’s some critical thinking. I just heard on the news that we get an extra second this Saturday. So the atomic clocks will count to “11:59:60 pm” before changing over to “12:00:00 am” Sunday morning (July 1st). And that this happens only about once every hundred years, because the earth takes 2 milliseconds longer to spin each day. But it seems to me I remember them adding an extra second, just a few years ago.

    http://telegraph.co.uk/technology/4044681/New-Year-2009-Extra-second-added-to-get-clocks-back-on-time.html

    So just what are they up to? Can they make some money off of wedging an extra second into a year, whenever it suits them? If some traders have resorted to using fiber optic landlines, to get orders filled milliseconds faster, to bet their competition. Then what do you think an entire second’s difference can be turned into, financially speaking. This is starting to smell like the old shell game. Where some trillion dollar pea disappears in that crucial extra second. Think not? Then why didn’t they do this hat trick on New Years, instead of the end of the 2nd fiscal quarter?

  11. President Amabo (I see the comment system is still designed for retards.) says:

    If Americans were still capable of critical thinking we wouldn’t be suffering President Obama. Hell, there are actually ass monkeys out there who thing America isn’t the most important country in the history of the human race.

    • Dallas says:

      Agree this is the best country. One that allows greatness like two term pres Bill Clinton and Obama restore the power to the people.
      The grasps of an uncontrolled capitalist system driven by greed and fortune must be tamed periodically.

      By the way, the comment system I see on my system is pretty good. I actually donate to Dvorack instead of leaching. I see numbered, chronological comments. Color coded and rated for value. If you see no ratings, it’s because you have not yet offered anything of value.

      • pedro says:

        ” the comment system I see on my system is pretty good”

        This is pure genius in action. More proof that Texas only graduates sheeple

      • President Amabo (I see the comment system is still designed for retards.) says:

        I was unaware of that. So John put the comment system for non-retards behind a paywall. Capitalism in action. Bravo.

        As far as value goes, being an American citizen, my mere existence offers unmeasureable value to the entire human race. Without America, Earth itself may as well not exist.

  12. pedro says:

    This program has been going on in Texas for years. Dallas was a test subject. Based on what we see here, they achieved their goal

  13. sargasso_c says:

    Critical thinking is not just about argument. It is also about defending an idea. This example from Texas is possibly religiously motivated.

  14. BuzzMega says:

    “Hey kid, stop trying to about that headline right now.”

    Anybody ever read these things one word at a time?

  15. MikeN says:

    I’ve seen an outcome based school system get implemented. It led to dropping the spelling bee. Also they tried putting 1st 2nd and 3rd graders in the same classroom.

    Plus it wasn’t too hard to see the liberal bias in the now mandatory written tests. I helped my school out by saying that my first step in deciding how to find the source of rubbery taste in water would be to shut down the factory.

  16. Jason says:

    Guys, the problem here is that if you actually dig up these textbooks and read the questions where there is a claim to “critical thinking”, there is none to be found.

    The students are spoon fed ONLY a few of the facts (Typically, only what whoever’s agenda demands) and then told to make a decision on ONLY what was presented. No allowance for the introduction of more or different facts. (And I am NOT talking about ID where this happens to be a Texas focused article)

    No sir, I do not support CT in public schools as it cannot be trusted to be truly critical. I do, however, as a long time IT support and programmer person, CONSTANTLY push CT on my son so that he is not burried by enviro-propaganda and the like.

  17. Sheila says:

    Obviously those who can critically think are not their core market.

    ;-)

    survivingsurvivalism.com

  18. B. Dog says:

    What happens in Texas affects us all. Kennedy was shot there, allegedly by someone in the Texas School Book Depository. You either can believe that or not. Hell, if you went to school, you either knew it was ‘tarded or you didn’t. Find your own way out of the woods, if you can.

    http://nybooks.com/articles/archives/2012/jun/21/how-texas-inflicts-bad-textbooks-on-us/?pagination=false

  19. Jason says:

    Here’s how “values clarification” usually goes:

    Teacher: Good morning, class!
    Class: Good morning, Mrs. Aryan.
    Teacher: Today we’re going to play a game!
    Class: Yeah!
    Teacher: This game is called Lifeboat. All together…
    Class: Lifeboat!
    Teacher: Good! Lifeboat is a lesson in values clarification. Can you say values clarification?
    Class: No.
    Teacher: Values clarification is where your little minds decide which lives are worth living and which lives are worth…ahem… not living. Now here’s how we play. A big ship just sank. There are five people on the lifeboat. But the lifeboat is only made for two. I’ll list the five people on the chalkboard, and you, class, will decide which three will be thrown overboard. Are we ready?
    Class: Yes, Mrs. Aryan.
    Teacher: Good! First, there’s an old, old crippled grandfather. Second, there’s a mentally handicapped person in a wheelchair.
    Alison: What’s mentally handicapped?
    Teacher: It means they can never be a productive members of society. Third, there’s an overweight woman on welfare, with a sniffling, whimpering baby.
    Max: Is the baby on welfare, too?
    Teacher: Let’s not push Mrs. Aryan…
    Sydney: Who else is in the boat?
    Teacher: A young, white doctor with blue eyes and perfect teeth, and Joan Collins. Now, class, take five minutes to make your decision. … Times up! Well class?
    Class: Throw over grandpa ’cause he’s getting pretty old
    throw out the baby or we’ll all be catching it’s cold
    throw over fatty and we’ll see if she can float
    throw out the retard, and they won’t be rockin’ the boat
    Teacher: Very good! That was fun, wasn’t it?
    Class: Yes, Mrs. Aryan.

    • bobbo, the ONLY true Libertarian on this blog, all others being dogmatic posers says:

      Thats how I would choose and I never had the class.

      Young and healthy was the key.

  20. Traaxx says:

    I’ve had similar experiances with ‘critical skills’ thinking from progressives. It has nothing to do with solving problems, or how to look at question from all points of view and ends up simply as a brainwashing exercise, which is what uncle Dave Stalin wants in his NAZI/Commie view of the world, what bigot DavieStalin is a real Demoncrat.

    Whatever……………………………………………………………………………
    Traaxx

  21. NewformatSux says:

    Outcome based medicine is being mandated by ObamaCare, with funding going to those who cut costs.

    JCD in his recent column explains why this is a bad idea for corporations to fire their worst employees year after year in evaluations.