by John Taylor Gatto

“The second premise of Prussian schooling [which the United States subsequently borrowed] is that intellectual training is not the purpose of state schooling – obedience and subordination are. In fact, intellectual training will invariably subvert obedience unless it is rigidly controlled and doled out as a reward for obedience. If the will could be broken all else would follow.”

Twenty-six years of award-winning teaching have led John Gatto to some troubling conclusions about the public schools.

A seventh-grade teacher, Gatto has been named New York City Teacher of the Year and New York State Teacher of the Year. Praised by leaders as diverse as Ronald Reagan and Mario Cuomo, he’s a political maverick whose views defy easy categorization.



  1. ΛΕΟΝΙΔΑΣ Says:

    Glad to note that you are posting again and on a subject we appear to agree on (the separation of school and state). I have been reading John Gatto for some time. Although having earned my bread in a former life as a law officer (not the phonies one encounters in the Humboldt Soviet) Leonidas is a registered Libertarian who does not fall into the trap of marshalling arguements for or against nations/empires on the basis of moral platitudes. He bases his evaluations on first hand observations. We have such experience with about 25 nations including: U.S.S.R., Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Sweden as well as 20 “non Marxist” nations. The ultimate test is: would you choose to live under such a system? So far the U.S. with all its flaws wins. We probably agree that improvements are warranted but would part company on the collectivist/individualist nature of them.


  2. Anonymous Says:

    This is so true, and it is one-hundred years of social engineering — through the state-controlled public schools among other things — that has brought us 21st century America: a herd of compliant cows that are allowing themselves to be slowly enslaved to the technofascist police state.

    Here are some relevant great quotes:

    “[The] assumption that it is the aim of the [American] public school to fan the intelligence and to produce large numbers of alert and curious youths of both sexes is foolish. The state maintains its control of elementary education, not primarily to reduce illiteracy and turn the eyes of the plain people toward the stars, but to make sure that they are not taught anything that is subversive.

    “Public education is thus a police measure. The goal it moves toward is perfect standardization, perfect discipline, perfect imbecility.”

    — H. L. Mencken
    Baltimore Sun
    February 23, 1924


    “How is it that little children are so intelligent and men so stupid? It must be education that does it.”

    — Alexandre Dumas


    “You must adjust… This is the legend imprinted in every schoolbook, the invisible message on every blackboard. Our schools have become vast factories for the manufacture of robots.”

    — Robert Lindner


    “My schooling did me a great deal of harm and no good whatever; it was simply dragging a child’s soul through the dirt.”

    — George Bernard Shaw


    “And what is a good citizen? Simply one who never says, does or thinks anything that is unusual. Schools are maintained in order to bring this uniformity up to the highest possible point. A school is a hopper into which children are heaved while they are still young and tender; therein they are pressed into certain standard shapes and covered from head to heels with official rubber-stamps.”

    — H. L. Mencken

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Derrick Jensen’s “Walking On Water” covers this topic extensively. Excellent read.

  4. Anonymous Says:

    Is it true that you and Quarter mike are homosexual lovers?

  5. Anonymous Says:

    LaValle & Jackson are directly responsible for bringing in ex – felons into , Eureka . There’s others , too . Check out : RCAA OF HUMBOLDT COUNTY PETER LAVALLE ………… that’s scary!

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