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Awarding the Nobel Prize to Obama was a deliberately calculated move by the Europeans (I agree strongly with them). Their reasoning is simple and is based entirely on enlightened self interest. Obama delivered multiple speeches about nuclear disarmament and made promises to disarms American nuclear weapons. Most Americans, lacking basic empathy, can't understand how Europeans might feel quite uncomfortable with all those nuclear weapons and ICBMs in their backyard. Obama's speech must have been music to their ears, a hallelujah chorus. Politicians being who they are, make lots of promises only to do the Washington shuffle when keeping them becomes difficult or inconvenient (think health care reform but I digress). If Obama accepts this Noble prize, he can't go back on his promises or it will be far more difficult for him to do so.
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People decide to home school for various reasons. Some are paranoid right wing types trying to protect their children from Satan's evil influence in modern American culture. A not insignificant majority, just want to take charge of their child's education and be in control because they feel they can do better than the state at teaching their children. We should have state schools but by their large corporate and highly regulated nature they cannot meet the needs or desires of everyone, not matter how well these institutions are run. I know many liberal/libertarian home schoolers. This is America. We should have excellent public schools and an excellent tradition of home schooling, side by side. The article opens with a question and I'm paraphrasing "how on Earth can people possibly believe/follow Fox, Glen Beck, 911 truthers etc." Before continuing I personally think Fox is a horrible network that manipulates it viewers and definitely has an agenda. Glen Beck is an idiot and 911 truthers are insane. I have a good idea how they got that way. Government has been unresponsive, inefficient, insensitive and dishonest with people for a long time. The average Joe has no voice anymore. The only voices that appear to count are powerful entities/groups with their well organized lobbyists. The situation is very demoralizing for some people, even frightening and rightly so. They reason there must be some evil conspiracy afoot and engage in wild unrealistic fantasies. Things can seem bad enough that they can only be explained by the work of some mastermind criminal genius. 911 truthers are a classic example. Their theories are completely wacko but the declining social mood leading to a large movement such as the 911 truthers didn't just come from nowhere. Like a young child who doesn't completely understand the nature of the abuse they're experiencing, an immature populace looking for easy black and white answers will grasp for an explanation. They look for the worst not realizing that the real, less sensational truth, might be worse still, at least if there is some criminal mastermind the evil can be identified and dealt with somehow. But alas, the real evil is subtle, hides in the shadows and isn't easily identified or something we're even capable of identifying. Most of us know there's something wrong with how our country is going but what's wrong is simply too large and complicated for us to identify much less explain to an angry unthinking mass demanding black and white answers. On a personal note, I believe Noam Chomsky and Rolling Stone journalist Matt Taibbi comes as close as anyone can to articulating our present situation. It's messy and confusing. So we have some radical homeschoolers now, what did we expect? I don't fear them, rather I fear what drove them to become that way.
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