So, our country was hit by yet another hundred-year hurricane, the third in just twelve years, and – yet – when the rare beast of an honest reporter mentioned climate change in connection, he was quickly cut off by the corporate controllers on his TV network. (watch the clip below if you haven’t seen it, yet)
(Note: if the video linked above gets deleted, you may search the Internet for the title: “MSNBC Cuts Off Reporter Telling Truth About Floods & Oil”)
Watching this, it occurred to me, that in our world, and my own life, there exist grave problems and a little solution which are interconnected:
So, in our world, we have corporatist functionaries in politics and the media who deny the reality of climate change in the face of an almost 100% convinced scientific community (such agreement among scientists takes a lot of conclusive scientific research to arrive at, since the hallmark of science is skepticism and doubt). This denial on official channels is made possible by (and also cultivates) a huge level of overall science denial and scientific ignorance in the American population (especially among Republicans, but also elsewhere). The thing that we have which is supposed to protect our society from trashing our scientific discoveries and sliding back into ignorant primitivity, savagery, and superstition — the kind of mentality which gave us the persecutions of the medieval Inquisition and our very own Salem Witch Trials — is science education in our schools. Sadly, our schools do a poor job (perhaps not by accident).
I myself have worked as a science teacher in both public and independent schools. The problem I encountered was that the public school curricula leave no room for a more inspired way of science teaching, and independent schools are too unstable. In independent schools, I developed a fantastic science course which teaches the fundamental discoveries of science in everyday language, not buried under mathematical formulas or big, long, scientific jargon vocabulary that bounces off everybody’s ears. I had students who otherwise spent their entire day playing Pokemon, or who only came to school to sleep, hanging on my lips as I held enlightening class conversations about scientific discovery with them. It is actually exciting for lots of people to come to understand how the world around us (and in us) works — as long as it is easily understandable and makes total sense.
So, here we are: America is sinking deeper into ignorance and superstition as our science education fails them. I have developed a great science course which would help people out of that mental quicksand, but the school which last employed me has had to close due to financial problems. So, I can help people understand science as they never did before, but I have no school to teach in.
So, what about this idea: maybe turn the Internet into our classroom? If you have enjoyed articles on this political blog of mine, you may already have found a liking for my reasoning skills. In science (I am a scientist by trade and only later became a teacher, after intervening careers in information technology and music), my reasoning skills work even better than in politics, possibly by a lot. I see, and can quickly convey, fundamental principles which explain all of science, but which – for some reason – don’t occur to most science teachers, and – as I mentioned – the school curricula imposed on them from above tie their hands anyway.
So, how about the following solution? If you, or a child, niece, or friends of yours, struggle in a science course they must complete for credit, or you (or they) don’t want to be so bored by science class anymore, or you (or they) passed their courses but still feel scientifically illiterate and would like to learn how to run circles around those domineering former classmates… if any of these things apply to you or a friend or relative of yours, how about you – or they – sign up for the online version of my radically different online science course? It would not only help you (or them) grasp our modern scientific understanding of the natural world, but it would also put me back to work, but this time in a way that wouldn’t steal so much time and energy away from my political blogging and the book I have started to write — the way that my constant search for new jobs and my frequent relocations do. And, I think, we can make this really cheap, too. For just a fraction of what one has to spend on a tutoring lesson, you’ll get a full month participation in a written online conversation just like the posting and commenting on Facebook you are used to (in fact, we can do it right on Facebook) and without any of us having to commute long distances and rearrange our daily schedule.
Sounds good? Then sign up for it or let your children, nieces, nephews, siblings, cousins, friends, spouses, or even grandparents (if they retain curiosity in their retirement or regret they never made it to college), know of this possibility.
Here is the link to the sign-up page I have just put up: The Invisible World
The way this works, in short, is that we have amazing science conversations around non-boring-science-class-questions (like why meteors explode above cities and what that has to do with the strange behavior of an air pump), and to compensate me for a month’s work you pay $5 into my Paltreon account. This allows you to join or leave, or even resume, this ongoing course (a science conversation course, we might call it) at any time, and also puts some seed money onto my Paltreon page which I put up to try and finance this blog, another worthwhile goal, but one that is hard to get off the ground. (Human psychology prevents people from wanting to be the first to pay into a donations account, funny huh?)
So, this could be a win-win for everybody involved, helping to solve a number of problems connected to our society’s science denial, the lacking financing of alternative media and citizen journalism so desperately needed in our dark, but hopefully revolutionary, times, and you, or your dear ones, and me, personally.
Here is the link again: The Invisible World
I hope the idea flies with you and, if nothing else, you spread the word about it. 😉
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