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Document Type

Article in Response to Controversy

Theme

Education and the Crisis of Democracy: Confronting Authoritarianism in a Post 9/11 America

Abstract

This article was written at a very dire time in American history. Motivated by both a sense of outrage and hope, it attempted to identify a number of dangerous threats to democracy at home and abroad as well as and to offer a productive series of analyses of how to stop their poisonous effects on all aspects of public and private life. What was not clear to me at the time was the extent to which the horrific acts of September 11, 2001, would be used as a pretext to reinforce not simply the political and economic power of a number of hard-wired ideologues among a conservative, corporate and religious elite, but also to usher in an imperial presidency and administration that shredded civil liberties, lied to the American public to legitimate sending young American troops to Iraq, alienated most of the international community with a blatant exercise of arrogant power, tarnished the highest offices of government with unsavory corporate alliances, used political power to unabashedly pursue legislative polices that favor the rich and punish the poor, and disabled those public spheres not governed by the logic of the market.

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