As I began writing this column, in the morning of Nov. 6, I happened to be watching a television interview with Arne Duncan, U.S. secretary of education, who appeared on Fareed Zakaria “GPS” segment “Fixing America’s Education Crisis.”
Duncan admitted that America is failing and losing its world dominance in education. International testing has shown that American students fall behind foreign counterparts in math and science, and a 2009 study showed that U.S. students ranked 25th among 34 countries in those areas behind nations like China, Singapore, South Korea, and Finland.
According to USA Today, “To put the results into perspective, if the United States doubles its efforts, it would still take us decades to catch up to Hong Kong students.”
Today the United States is at greater risk than ever before. “The government education monopoly continues to imperil our economy by failing miserably at preparing the workforce. Business increasingly looks for talent overseas. The world’s greatest concentration of Ph.D.s is in Seoul, Korea, and half of Americans can’t even find Seoul on a map,” according to a government report
In his January 2011 State of the Union Address, President Obama linked the need to improve U.S. competitiveness in research and technology with fixing deficiencies in the U.S. education system, saying the country’s math and science education lags behind that of many nations. “If we want to win the future — if we want innovation to produce jobs in America and not overseas — then we also have to win the race to educate our kids.”
Shouldn’t that have been done, or at least started, during Obama’s first term?
And shouldn’t you, Mr. President, have already done just that during your first term in office, and not with a delay of four years, to have reached your belated intention “to win the race to educate our kids” you have so eloquently expressed this year in your State of the Union address?
Did you first have to deepen the education crisis (which you certainly did) during your first four years in office in order to have the reason to so passionately address it in your ongoing 2011 election campaign as something you would take care of if elected to the second term?
And was Obama made aware of the dismal performance of American students on the 2009 international test scores? American schools were already failing under his watch!
Why didn’t he urgently initiate some drastic reforms (as he promises now) on finding out that American education was no longer world class? Or was he busy shopping for the best private school for his own daughters?
You failed us American voters, Mr. President! You’ve had four years in which you could have fixed American education system, for you must know that our strength lies in our top students.
You failed to improve the U.S. public schools for children of all those who voted for you and fell prey to your fiery promises and your disarming smile and entrusted to you their children’s future?
Four years ago, when Obama was running his first election campaign, didn’t he promise that if elected, education and jobs would be his first and foremost priority? Or did he after moving into the White House conveniently forget about his pledge to make things better only to sell now to the American voters the same old promises, using the same eloquent technique that worked so well the first time?
In Russian, there is a saying “old song to a new tune.” And that’s what Obama’s new campaign is, under the new (old?) slogan: “change.” (Change what? Change the United States?)
Obama started his second-term national election campaign already a year ago, the fact he vehemently denies, much earlier than it had been customarily done in the past — under the pretense of fixing the failed U.S. economy, but actually feeling the waters for his much-desired victory.
The global aggressiveness of China, a brainchild of Mao, who openly hailed it as being Marxist and communist and who ruled it in a globally aggressive spirit, is being politely overlooked by the free countries, which means that Obama is completely out of touch with the troubling realities of today’s world, with China spreading its tentacles all over the globe and having just one target in mind — to eventually bring the United States (and the free world in general) to the position of the colonies of global China.
During Obama’s four years in office nothing he had promised to the voters in his first election campaign has been delivered! Do you, Mr. President, deserve another four years in office in order to irreversibly ruin American education and economy, put us deeper in debt, disarm America and turn us into a Third-World country to the glee of Chinese dictators?
Lev Navrozov can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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