The Pen is mightier than the sword, but the Pen must sometimes move the sword against corruption if the corrupt are not moved by the pen.. An idea without an implementer is useless. "The Rulers do not carry the sword in vain"Rom 13:4

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Bed Time stories are..BAD! says Philosopher Adam Swift.

...and so are loving families according to Philosopher Adam Swift!

In an ABC Australia show on the Philosopher Zone, Adam Swift from Warwick University. (or was that the  'Frankfurt school of Social Research/ AKA the Institute for Marxism) In his talk/interview. Swift outlines his critique of parents reading bedtime stories to their children because this "imparts unfair advantage" to them... and creates unequal opportunity.  He further claims that this parental joy and duty, is more effective in shaping the child's future than sending them to a high fee elite private school!

He prefaced his talk with reference to Plato's 5th book in his Republic, where there is a discussion on how things like raising children and marriage would work. The work calls for the abolition of the family, the selective breeding of the 'Guardians' (Social and physical elite) and the stamping out of any breeding by the lower levels of the social order. (Yes they can have intercourse, but any embryo or birth must be crushed!)  Women and children are held in common.. and intercourse is by lot. Children will be raised by state  Nannies.

Swift recognizes that based on both psychology and observation of Eastern Europe under the communist years, that infants need nurturing by a mother and must receive love and affection. (see "Wire mother/Cloth mother" monkey experiments).  So, Swift concedes that children must be raised initially in nuclear families. He then jumps into the twilight zone by telling parents not to do the very thing any caring parent will do... 'read stories to their children'...because it helps them get ahead... and we can't have that now can we?

"Is a Loving Family an Unfair Advantage?"  is the title of the show.

I wrote to Adam Swift to ask about his position re bed time stories, and why he picked on loving caring parents, rather than aiming at neglectful parents to stir them up to greater responsibility as a way of equalizing opportunity? This is his reply:

Thanks, I'll answer but this must be the last:

Here's how we think about it: It is unfair that children's prospects depend on what they parents can and want to do for them. There are lots of different mechanisms that explain why children of more advantaged parents tend to be better off than children of less advantaged parents. Among those mechanisms are many things that are important parts of family life (e.g. bedtime stories). Because they are so important, those things should be protected even though they create unfair differences in life chances. Other mechanisms (e.g. elite private schools) are not so important parts of family life and so the case for their protection is much weaker.

Of course there are different ways of reducing the extent to which children's prospects depend on their parents. One is indeed to improve the prospects of those with less. But one way of motivating people to be willing to contribute to that improvement is to point out that even simple things like bedtime stories confer unfair advantage on those who get them.


Adam Swift
Department of Politics and International Studies
University of Warwick
Coventry CV4 7AL, UK

Looking closely at Swifts reply, it's clear that his real preference is still to 'dumb down' those he considers to be 'advantaged' children.  How does  'pointing out' that bed time stories unfairly disadvantage some children help to 'motivate people to be willing to contribute to that improvement' ??  that's absurd.  It's not the role of diligent parents to zip off to some disadvantaged home and suddenly read stories to these neglected children!
So what 'motivation' is Swift speaking about?   Isn't he just rehashing his sentence structure to say in different words "No..you should not read bed time stories to your children because this unfairly advantages them".

Seems clear to me!

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