Education or Programming?

Mr. Solstad

There is a fine line between education and programming. Unfortunately, the two are often confused. Programming is not education because education is far more than that. In this regard, consider the following:

The Oxford English Dictionary presents meanings that words are intended to convey; it informs us as to their origins and what they meant and mean. It is therefore useful to understanding, to wit:

On page 73, Second Edition, Volume V, OED, educate is presented under four subsections.

  1. To rear, bring up (children, young animals) by supply of food and attention to physical wants.
  2. To bring up (young persons) from childhood, so as to form (their) habits, manners, intellectual and physical aptitudes. [Not attitudes]
  3. To train (any person) so as to develop the intellectual and moral powers generally.
  4. To train, discipline (a person, a class of persons, a particular mental or physical faculty or organ), so as to develop some special aptitude, taste, or disposition.

Under three above, there are two examples: First: Elder men, if they want to educate others, should begin by educating themselves; Second: Our artists are not educated at all, they are only trained.

On page 592, Second Edition, Volume XII OED, programmed is presented under 2 subsections.

  1. Predetermined or controlled by a program. Under this there is an appurtenant sentence: The machine, having been properly briefed… will perform its programmed task.
  2. Psychol, and Educ. Presented in the form of a teaching programme (PROGRAM, PROGRAMME 2h) or employing such a programme. More: “Programmed instruction is designed so that the maximal reinforcement ensues by controlling the environment.”

Regarding the preceding, I am in full agreement with Bernanos’s suspicions regarding intellectuals, people he judged “…one of the most suspicious phenomena of modern civilization: “Consciously or not, they dream of a world governed by pawns, because they themselves are pawns.”  They are full of theories they have come up with out of the blue, and they insist on looking at reality exclusively through these.” As with most students of jurisprudence, most if not all other students today are exposed, more often than not – programmed – to that same unfortunate desire to parse language for effect, not insight; not the truth. Enter socialism in any of its varied forms and perverted fabrications: political correctness.

Here is another apropos observation that is even more to the point: the post-modern world is a place more litigious than ever before, which is stultifying in and of itself. Students and practitioners of jurisprudence, including local, state and federal judiciary personnel, present a growing threat to civilization because their “…probabilities and plausible arguments involve no knowledge concerning truth, but trial and disputation and wrangling conflict and contentiousness and everything of that sort. [i]

 The above reflections largely explain the foundations of media bias in the late modern and post-modern era, especially in the United States of America, which seems today to be in the grip of social media censors whose progressive leanings cannot be in doubt. Regarding this, Simone Weil reminds us all, you and me, that “’The social order is irreducibly that of the prince of this world. Our only duty with regard to the social is to try to limit the evil of it. . . . Something of the social labeled divine; an intoxicating mixture which brings about every sort of license―the devil disguised.’” [ii]

Social media censorship has filtered down from academia, their periodicals, and progressive politicians through the reading public to the wide plains of popular sentiment. At the same time, the American Academy has reduced or eliminated parts of the liberal arts curriculum, especially history, and specifically western and American history to electives, which study used to be a widespread requirement K-12 and well beyond. It has since been largely dropped as a requirement or diluted to such an extent that it is not history at all, but something else, something politically useful Why is this so?

The answer to the preceding question is astonishingly simple: “The purpose of history is the reduction of untruth.” [iii]  By removing history, you can remove truth, and are thus free to mold (program) opinion to whatever you wish.

Programming delivers programmed results. Education delivers understanding. The former is the progressive, socialist path, which leads only to programmed results, which is a dead end. The latter leads to thinking, which In turn leads to the understanding that begins and ends with God.


[i] Philo, Volume I, Book III, edited by G. P. Gould, The Loeb Classical Library (LCL 226), Page 459, 1991.

[ii] Weil, Gravity and Grace, Copyright © Librarie PLON, first published in Routledge Classics 2002 by Routledge, 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon O14 4 RN, 711 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017, Page xxxvii.

[iii] Remembered Past; On History, Historians, and Historical Knowledge, by John Lukacs, Chapter II, Page 279, edited by Mark G. Malvasi and Jeffrey O. Nelson, ISI Books, Wilmington, Delaware, © 2005 ISI Books.

About Michael

Retired military officer; retired Air Force civil servant; retired executive, DS Information Systems Corporation; writer; researcher; reader and avid yachtsman.
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