Friday, September 21, 2007

It Could Only Be America...

I bring you the single best reason yet not to study TOK:

In response to the teaching of epistemology -
"As such, IB is hostile to the foundational principles of the United States. Our Declaration of Independences [sic] says, 'We hold these truths to be self-evident'. One of the foundational pillars of the United States is recognition of objective truth, real truth. IB undermines this principle and aggressively teaches the contrary view."

Oh Alec Peterson, how could you!

The full articles are here:

Charmingly entitled "Terrorism as Taught by International Baccalaureate" and "Why International Baccalaureate (IB) is Un-American" respectively, they make a very compelling case against offering the IB. For example, the program must be discontinued because "the IBO promotes the worldview of New Age-Pantheism Guru William Butler Yeats", and therefore "the IBO--UN view is the foundation of tyranny." Q.E.D.

I've heard him called many things, but I think that really takes the cake (and the metaphorical candles, the table, and perhaps the little plastic bride figurine too!)

I don't know which is worse: that the articles are written by 2 college professors of Political Science, or that some high schools actually agreed and it took an ACLU lawsuit for them to reinstate the program (

Yes, the ACLU. If nothing else, our pantheistic gods must have a sense of humour, and of irony.

- Aristoitle

(Come to think of it, if any of this were true, my TOK essay might just make me a paragon of traditional American values. Green card here I come!)

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Truly Great

I think continually of those who were truly great
Who, from the womb, remembered the soul's history
Through corridors of light where the hours are suns,
Endless and singing. Whose lovely ambition
Was that their lips, still touched with fire,
Should tell of the Spirit, clothed from head to foot in song.
And who hoarded from the Spring branches
The desires falling across their bodies like blossoms.

What is precious, is never to forget
The essential delight of the blood drawn from ageless springs
Breaking through rocks in worlds before our earth.
Never to deny its pleasures in the morning simple light
Nor its grave evening demand for love.
Never to allow gradually the traffic to smother
With noise and fog, the flowering of the Spirit.

Near the snow, near the sun, in the highest fields,
See how these names are feted by the waving grass
And by the streamers of white cloud
And whispers of wind in the listening sky.
The names of those who in their lives fought for life,
Who wore at their hearts the fire's centre.
Born of the sun, they travelled a short while toward the sun
And left the vivid air signed with their honour.

Stephen Spender