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Adam Bessie is an assistant professor of English at Diablo Valley College, in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is a co-wrote a chapter in the 2011 edition of Project Censored on metaphor and political language, and is a frequent contributor to dailycensored.com, truthout, media-ocracy on diverse issues in education, culture and politics. Follow my essays on Twitter: adambessie
TSA and The Junk Man: The Thanksgiving Trojan Horse
The Junk Man is a marionette for the anti-government, neo-conservative agenda, an agenda that thrives on our fear and paranoia, and the TSA controversy has presented yet another opportunity to focus the newscycle on attacking the government, and to encourage privatization, de-regulation, and the free market.
Monday, November 1, 2010
Curing our National Case of Hypochondria
We have become a nation of hypochondriacs, convinced every cough is tuberculosis, every bump is cancer, and every sneeze is the swine flu. So scarred are we by 9/11, we find the terror in the innocuous, we see foreboding omens in the everyday.
The Myth of the Bad Teacher
In this political season of faux anti-establishment anger born of very real economic desperation, public educators have become the villain du jour, their reputations collateral damage in the war against "big government.
Friday, October 1, 2010
The Rise of Penthouse Punk
The Penthouse Punk is a new breed, with the money of a stockbroker, the views of a neo-conservative economist, but the anti-establishment rhetoric of a black-hooded anarchist chucking rocks at cops in a riot.
Public Education Under Attack By Bay Area Media
While this seems a minor oversight, this one cover story is a front in a larger ideological war -" supported by the Republican Party -" to dismantle the public school system in favor of a "free enterprise system" of charter schools, with "school choice."
The Oakland School Borg?
Does a return to more conservative values in school dress codes, strict discipline, and absolute obedience to authority ensure that we can educate students better?
Monday, April 27, 2009(2 comments)
Where are the Teachers?
Not a single community college teacher was on the panel, a panel focused on problems facing community colleges. Huh? This is like not asking cardiologists to join the discussion on the heart, or holding a cooking show without a chef.
What Do Students Learn from Multiple-Choice Tests?
Multiple-choice tests - with their orderly rows of bubbles, and authoritative, syntactically clear solutions - construct a polished marble facade of truth, convincing students that there are clear, unambiguous answers in the world.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Welcome, Conquistadors! You can put your muskets down. Your beach front property is hidden this a-way!
Moving Off Bush St.
Moving from Bush St. isn't just Obama's job. It's not just the President-elect's task to change the political landscape, to move us from a culture of fear and terror and partisanship. It's also our job.
Obama is Hitler? WTF?
And no doubt, the powerful orator like Obama, like Martin Luther King, like Ronald Reagan, like Jim Jones, and Hitler can move the masses to action. But this is where the analogy ends.
Will my college students vote?
Will my college students vote? Will they play a role - even a decisive one - in this election? And more broadly: what part do they see themselves playing in politics in general?
Wednesday, October 15, 2008(4 comments)
The Savage Nation Party?
Conservative commentator Michael Savage's vitriol with the Republican ticket speaks to the fragmentation of support for McCain in the "die hard" conservative base he speaks to daily, and more broadly, it suggests another sign of McCain's slowing momentum. But don't applaud yet.
Palin: Rebel Without a Brain
Palin framed herself as a rebel last night, as a revolutionary who is qualified to change the culture of Washington because she doesn't understand it. The rebellion she's leading? To make erudition not only a prerequisite for high office.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
"WHAT NEXT?" A Teacher's Perspective on Change
Students in my community college English course didn't seem to feel too much a part of "America's History," nor a part of it's future. And after 8 years under Bush, we know this feeling of "passionate paralysis" well.
Coffee with Sarah Palin
Palin is a symbol, sure. But what she represents is the popularity of pre-scientific thought which has plagued our nation the last 8 years.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
My Students Have Cooler Phones than I
Today's American college student has more technology in her pocket than some small African country you've never heard of, which could easily be looked up in seconds on Wikipedia (if someone was actually bored enough in class to do this). The author, a college English instructor, wonders about why his students have such awesome technology - and why it is so, so much better than his clunker, which can only make calls (OMG!).