Monday, November 10, 2008

Change.gov

Many homeschoolers are wondering how the election of Barack Obama will affect education and homeschooling. That remains to be seen - literally - because Barack Obama has taken his whole agenda down from his website, Change.gov. A few vague paragraphs remain, but most of the pertinent information on the issues was removed this weekend.

I realized this today when I attempted to finish a post on Obama's plan to require community service; I started the post last Friday after a brief exchange in the comments section. At that time, I copied this portion from the Change.gov website.
"The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation’s challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start."
When I grabbed the text, I forgot to copy the URL. When I went back to the website today to grab the link, I noticed the page wasn't there. In fact, nothing that I previously read regarding the Obama agenda was on the website. (There was a section at the bottom that linked to a variety of issues.) What happened?

Curious, I googled around a little and saw that The Washington Times noticed too. I also found a post from Little Green Footballs that noticed that the education section had been changed and the "requirement" portion edited. The website now has a section titled, America Serves which reads,
The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation’s challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by setting a goal that all middle school and high school students do 50 hours of community service a year and by developing a plan so that all college students who conduct 100 hours of community service receive a universal and fully refundable tax credit ensuring that the first $4,000 of their college education is completely free. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start.
Most of the information was just repeated from his campaign website, so why take it down? Now that he's been elected, perhaps Team Obama is worried that people might actually read the fine print and find out just how "progressive" he really is. But requiring citizens to work without compensation is not progressive, it's regressive. Those are changes Barack Obama obviously doesn't want you and I to see.

Is it any wonder that Obama selected the URL "change.gov" for his new website? Obama promised to fundamentally change government. Perhaps he's hoping we won't remember exactly what those changes were now that he's President-elect. Thankfully, there are too many people paying attention.

Over the weekend an Obama spokesman, Valerie Jarrett, told Tom Brokaw, "given the daunting challenges that we face, it's important that president elect Obama is prepared to really take power and begin to rule day one."

Before day one, can somebody please remind Team Obama that he's in America where "we the people" rule and the President serves with our consent. They might also want to mention to him slavery was outlawed and no one works without just compensation, including our children.

Change.gov is a catchy URL, but let's not carry this change mantra too far. After all, there are a were a few moments in our nation's history when we did do things right.

Brandy has provided some excellent commentary on the same subject in two posts,
Change.gov: The new slavery and Change.gov: Infringements on Liberty. I especially liked this thought, "The Obama transition team deliberately appeals to the American ideal of freedom while undermining it at the same time."

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