Once upon a time, in medieval universities, new students enrolled in the trivium. It was the foundation curriculum. It was required. Its parts were: grammar, logic and rhetoric.
Grammar: the interior construction of language; the parts of speech; the proper agreement of parts of speech.
Logic: the valid and invalid connections in the course of an argument; the method of proper reasoning; the deductive links in a chain, at the end of which is a conclusion.
Rhetoric: oral presentation; the use of language to make a case; the capacity to persuade, even in the face of counter-argument.
Today, the subject matter of the trivium is not only downplayed. It has been shattered.
This article focuses on the death of logic.
When the intensive handling of ideas is seen as a laughable goal for education, indoctrination is plugged in as the only alternative.
The mind of the student shifts from being an active force to being a container.
The destruction of logic is a conscious strategy, a game plan. Its goal is to pervert rational thought at its core and insert ideology masked as insight.
The game plan was cooked up a long time ago at the Carnegie Foundation, where the undermining of American history was the No. 1 pastime.
Instead of merely erasing knowledge of American history, it was decided that the basic way ideas are studied should be torpedoed.
The actual meaning of an idea was firmly placed on the back burner. Front and center would be: Relentlessly assess and attack the people who forwarded those ideas.
And sure enough, this strategy has gained great prominence.
The revered Founders of the Republic? Shysters, con men, slaveholders, monopolists who saw rebellion from England as the way to win greater power for themselves at the expense of everyone else living on American soil.
Therefore, the argument continues — and this is crucial — the Founders’ ideas, as expressed in the Declaration and the Constitution, were rotten to the core. The ideas can be dismissed out of hand as coming from “a bad source.”
If you want to see that sleight-of-hand trick in action, just visit a few American studies classes in universities and catch the wave.
Ideas no longer need to be judged on their sense, merit and alignment with basic principles. Nor are they judged by their position in a well-formed argument. All that is out. Now, you have to “look to the source” and make all your decisions based on “who these people really were who expressed the ideas.”
And since that’s the case, learning to think or reason is unnecessary.
New education, then, once you strip away the old essentials, is really nothing more than learning who the bad guys were and the good guys were. This can be taught by ideologically motivated professors in a few hours.
In logic, this used to be called the fallacious ad hominem argument. Now, it isn’t called anything. It’s praised as the insightful way to do intellectual business.
In the case of the Founders’ ideas, we have, among others: the free market, individual freedom, private property and severely limited central government.
No need to examine these concepts. No need to assess, for instance, the success of the free market — despite its corruption by criminals and monopolists — in providing a better standard of living for millions of people. Forget it. All you have to know is that the free market was proposed by phony American aristocrats who wanted more power for themselves. On that basis alone, you can reject the free market.
How about private property? Same thing. The same phony Founders put that idea forward; therefore, it must be wrong.
Thomas Jefferson? He owned slaves. Therefore, as the night follows day, everything he said or thought or did was wrong.
See how easy education has become?
Individual freedom? Another absurdity proposed by the crooked Founders. Reject it. Don’t bother thinking about what that freedom has allowed you to express. Who cares?
So, one by one, these core ideas fall to the ax; and criticizing America becomes destroying America.