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  1. #91
    Senior Member Nighthawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raindancing View Post

    The 'history' I was taught in the US was not about truth, it could more accurately have be called propaganda.
    That has been my take on it as well, after travelling around the world and meeting/immersing myself into other cultures. It is amazing just how much is left out of American history books, and how skewed the viewpoints can be. Then we ironically maintain that propaganda is a bad thing. Our news media tends to take a similar slant as our history writers ... leaving out a lot of the unpleasant stuff.

  2. #92
    Allergic to Mornings ergophobe's Avatar
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    Okay, so imperialism and propaganda are negatives when used in the context of the United States but not in the context of British Imperialism here or Soviet propaganda? She addresses this in the context of both middle and secondary school students. That's really worrying and weird.

    The funniest part of the video was the request to take out isolationalism - this is not a negative, it was a valid form of foreign policy adopted during several past administrations.

    Here's more on the larger debate on the social studies curriculum and who was appointed to the board of education. I think Barton is a fascinating choice (wow, Texas really is different)

    "Another adviser appointed by social conservatives was David Barton, president of Aledo-based WallBuilders, a group that challenges the legal separation of church and state."

    Usehername - didn't mean to redirect the debate with a focus on religion instead of negatives. Feel free to direct the conversation as you think best.

    Texas education board tackles standards for social studies | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | News: Education

  3. #93
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ergophobe View Post
    Odious communism....

    The problem with saying that is was humanitarian/democratic concerns and not strategic ones that drove/drive foreign policy is that we need to stop and ask, of all the countries with brutal dictatorships and no democratic norms, why only choose to engage the ones at risk of adopting communism and being under the influence of Soviet power. Why not Libya? Why not the multitude of brutal African dictatorships or Latin American miltary dictatorships (U.S. intervention there was barely as direct as we saw in Vietnam or South Korea). It would be so much easier and better justified to protect people and their inalienable democratic rights closer to home? Strategic interests provide a more compelling explanation.
    I agree that we didn't intervene for primarily humanitarian purposes, and that is neither what I said nor what the history books teach. We were strategically committed to the containment of Communism, not the advancement of liberal democracy or human rights. The context I included (the history books don't actually include the word "odious," I admit ) simply illustrates that there was no simplistic conflict between humanitarian impulses and strategic interests in the context of our intervention in Vietnam, or the Cold War more generally.

  4. #94
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ergophobe View Post
    The funniest part of the video was the request to take out isolationalism - this is not a negative, it was a valid form of foreign policy adopted during several past administrations.
    Agreed, I wonder if she also wants to leave out Washington's final address...

  5. #95
    Don't Judge Me! Haphazard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ergophobe View Post

    Regarding this idea of the uniqueness or specialness of the United States. There is no harm in highlighting this for students. That's what all countries do. History everywhere is told from the perspective of the country in which it is being told and done to highlight the trends that lead to the modern day country -- its unique economy, politics and society/culture. There's no harm in stressing what makes the United States unique. It is unique like every country in the world is for its citizens.
    This.

    As I've learned, American Exceptionalism is not about "being exceptional". It's about "being an exception", as in, a lot of other nations have tried to use methods that we've used but it hasn't really worked very well for them. The circumstances and what makes the US work are pretty unique.

    Then again, so is everywhere else. I mean, look at the UK. Gradualism. That's pretty neat. That hasn't worked for too many others. That'd be "British Exceptionalism". I guess.
    -Carefully taking sips from the Fire Hose of Knowledge

  6. #96
    Senior Member LEGERdeMAIN's Avatar
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    It's about "being an exception", as in, a lot of other nations have tried to use methods that we've used but it hasn't really worked very well for them.
    what methods have worked for the US that haven't worked for other nations?
    “Some people will tell you that slow is good – but I’m here to tell you that fast is better. I’ve always believed this, in spite of the trouble it’s caused me. Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba…”


  7. #97
    Don't Judge Me! Haphazard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaybeLogic View Post
    what methods have worked for the US that haven't worked for other nations?
    More specifically a lot of 3rd world countries have tried to adopt similar forms of government. I recall especially the amount of separation of powers that we have here doesn't work elsewhere very well. Also the two-party system, allowing for a lot of local power, blah blah blah -- I've forgotten a lot from last year, but there were quite a few things.
    -Carefully taking sips from the Fire Hose of Knowledge

  8. #98
    Senior Member ed111's Avatar
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    I think every nation has a few skeletons in the closet, and it's impossible to 'compare' one country's history to another and say we're better/worse than you.

    I value truth, and as a child resented not being given all of the information.

    Now I come to think about it the USA has done a lot of horrible things in its short history: genocide, slavery, wars, torture, assassinations, propping up dictatorships, use of nuclear weapons, arms sales, damaging the environment. Wow! Jesus would be proud of y'all

  9. #99
    Senior Member LEGERdeMAIN's Avatar
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    Most governments have a (semi)democratic constitutional republic nowadays paired with what used to be called a "mixed economy"..... it seems to work fairly well wherever it's tried. democratic republics aren't exactly new: Greeks, Romans...


    I'm all for a non-party or a multi-party system...The two-party system is next to useless.
    “Some people will tell you that slow is good – but I’m here to tell you that fast is better. I’ve always believed this, in spite of the trouble it’s caused me. Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba…”


  10. #100
    Don't Judge Me! Haphazard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaybeLogic View Post
    Most governments have a (semi)democratic constitutional republic nowadays paired with what used to be called a "mixed economy"..... it seems to work fairly well wherever it's tried. democratic republics aren't exactly new: Greeks, Romans...


    I'm all for a non-party or a multi-party system...The two-party system is next to useless.
    It wasn't JUST that it's a 'semidemocratic constitutional republic'. There are a lot of those. This was a class on government, and the particulars of American government are peculiar.
    -Carefully taking sips from the Fire Hose of Knowledge

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