Monday, September 18, 2006


Worst book in history?

"Why Mommy is a Democrat" probably seems like a great idea to Democrats, but as a libertarian I think it's a very bad idea with dangerous consequences. Isn't picture-book age a bit early to indoctrinate kids on politics? Read some sample pages to see what I mean.

Anyone have a problem with the dark-skinned homeless man and the rich white people in the book? What about the big scary elephant chasing away said homeless man? Beyond the pictures, how about things like "Democrats make sure we share..."? More like "Democrats make it legal to steal."

Bill O'Reilly also wrote a kid's book, but I think it was a little different. I don't think it has pictures and I don't think little kids will actually read it.

Are libertarians on this battlefield? I hope so.

What I really dislike about the book is that it implies that "sharing" one's income is a good thing that the government should enforce.

I would say the biggest issue that seperates me from most Democrats is that I don't believe in most re-distribution schemes. Relative income doesn't matter much to me. Who cares where you sit in the income distribution if you have resources to direct your own life and achieve your full potential as a human being?

Of course, a lot of smart Democrats don't fall victim to crude class-envy (think Paul Krugman 10 years ago). But it seems like the ones that do are much better at articulating their message.
Are you suggesting that libertarians should get in the 'indocrinating our youth' game?
Good question, Chris. Indoctrination implies, "Do as I say, not as I do." With my kids, I try to emulate how we should live. And I answer a lot of questions...
By the way, on Travis' list of books, near the bottom, are my favorite "Uncle Eric" books. Also, to all those who have not read them, Lois Lowry's books, "The Giver," and "Finding Blue," are excellent children's parallels to "Brave New World." Excellent arguements against collectivism and "sameness." I taught these books to junior high students and they provoke great discussions. Not beneath an adult reading though.

I'm not sure how exactly to fight this one. We could either indoctrinate the hell out of our kids (does this even work?), or we could just ridicule collectivist indoctrination. I will probably choose a little of both.

Then again, kids who grow up democrat now and revisit this book later (after they realize how sugar-coated it was) might be upset that their ideology was shaped by such an idiotic book.
I was watching cartoons the other day and was amazed at how indocrinating they actually are. It does seem to be a fair game...
I definitely plan to "indoctrinate the hell" out of any kids I have AND ridicule collectivism every chance I get. I think the key is to start really young. If you wait until they're teenagers, they'll just rebel for the sake of rebelling.

Seriously though. Think about all the indoctrination kids see everyday that encourages collectivist ideas. Almost all (public) school programs, the Discovery Channel, Barney the Big Stupid Purple Dinosaur, National Geographic (which I totally loved as a kid!), even the Smurfs! I think libertarians should put a little propoganda out there just to combat the huge about of socialist/collectivist stuff that seems so pervasive.
Do any of you have nieces, nephews, etc. currently in elementary school? My kids are in Kindergarden and First Grade. They let parents come in about once a month and read aloud a book to some of the students at lunchtime. They call it Book -a Bite. My wife and I are both signed up. Here's a chance to expose any little ones in your lives to some good freedom philosophy. Now, to generate the perfect book list... (some old FEE articles are elementary enough even for the youngest.)
I think we should include Facts Not Fear by Michael Sanera and Jane Shaw on the list, as well as An Island Called Liberty by Joseph Specht.
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