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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sell Stuff! Skip School!

WARNING: The Blogger General Has Determined That Capitalism, Not President Obama, Is Dangerous to Your Children's Moral Health
Some professed patriots would bar the President of the United States from speaking directly to our children and encouraging them to stay in school. But many of those same critics remain silent when big corporations coerce captive kids into working as marketers with promises to let them skip school.

Las Vegas sixth-grade teacher Betty Buehler highlights the hypocrisy she sees in her own school:

Private employee to captive students: "Who's ready for more prizes?!"

President of the United States to students, many of whom are not allowed to listen:

"I'm here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I'm here because I want to talk with you about your education and what's expected of all of you...."

Private employee: "How many of you would like to get out of school for a show?" (The motivator describes a BMX show that will come to the school for certain sales numbers.) "The top 25 sellers of the school will sit in a special VIP section and get autographs."

President: "But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities."

Private employee: "Who wants to get out of school ... and ride in a limo?! YAY!" The kids scream madly. (Top-selling kids get a lunchtime limo ride to a pizza place.)

President: "[S]how up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents, and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed." [Betty Buehler, "Schools Shun Obama Yet Let Sales Firms Prey on Students," Christian Science Monitor, 2009.10.30]

The "values" of unrestrained capitalism are much more destructive to the moral health of our youth than anything our President wants them to learn.


  1. really?? its the business' fault for being allowed access to these kids for monetary gain? yea, its a crappy way of doing business, but who let them do it? (gotta remember, if there is money to be made - someone will do whatever they can to make it)

    i think what needs to be looked at further is who the heck at this school allowed this business to come in and do this. the business is just trying to make money - its their job. the idiots in the school administration that allowed them to come into the school are the ones that need to be yelled at...

  2. And Michael, I think that's exactly the point Ms. Buehler is making. Her school officials thought letting the President speak to the kids was unwise, but they fail to recognize the overtly harkful message in the sales pitches they allow corporate raiders to undermine education with.


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