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Re: acid, weed, giggling and fairy tales [On Our Darker Bioweapons Future]

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  • pete_karaiskos
    Hi Keith, I want to make a couple of quick comments - ... I think you might be surprised to find that many people have accused Waldorf Critics of not being
    Message 1 of 137 , May 1, 2005
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      Hi Keith,

      I want to make a couple of quick comments -

      --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "kmlightseeker"
      <kmlightseeker@y...> wrote:
      > As far as the PLANS mission statement implying criticism of it's
      > subject, I would say it does. I know that criticism has various
      > meanings, which are and/or can imply: critique, critical
      > thinking/analysis, criteria, analytical appraisal, value judgement,
      > disapproval.

      I think you might be surprised to find that many people have accused
      Waldorf Critics of not being upfront about their views. On
      OpenWaldorf, for example, it was claimed that a link to a site called
      *Waldorf Critics* wasn't clear enough about the fact that this was a
      site critical of Waldorf. It was subsequently changed to say
      something like "Waldorf Critics (critical)" so as not to confuse
      anyone. The mission statement may be the new viewer's first exposure
      to the site, and I think it makes it clear what they should expect -
      God forbid they stumble in there looking for information in support of
      Waldorf <G>. Personally, I don't think words like "cult" should be in
      the mission statement either.

      > True. But there is a problem if people think that what they believe is
      > commonsense and this view is not shared by everyone. Where exactly is
      > the common ground? Where and how does human discourse advance? As
      > individuals we can certainly choose what we want for ourselves, but
      > what about matters that affect all of us and need community-based or
      > social answers? What if an indivdual or group believes it has some
      > answers or can contribute to the general community, but the
      > information which it wishes to impart is not received by the general
      > community? What if they present evidence for their views, even if
      > these are just ideas, and these are opposed because they do not fit
      > the assumptions of the society, rather than the professed reason being
      > that the information lacks objectivity or practicality or clarity?

      Keith - here Anthroposophists must simply join the club. There are
      thousands of groups world-wide that feel they have the answers for
      society. They want their views heard, and implemented. They are
      absolutely sure their views are not only true, but not debatable.
      Look at environmentalists, for example. They are quite sure that
      society needs to stop destroying the planet. That inevitable doom
      will come if they don't stop the course of action society has taken.
      They are willing to chain themselves to trees, or face gunships with
      fishing boats. They have many answers, and science to support their
      views. Many people, in their hearts, hold these views too - but
      still, society in general isn't ready to listen.

      > I'm sure that accountability is valued by all sincere people. The
      > Waldorf idea seems to me to embrace that idea. The schools need to
      > reflect that principle in it's work.

      Waldorf, in my opinion, is Anthroposophy's nemesis. It demonstrates
      to the world what happens when Anthroposophy is misapplied and what
      happens when people with a social solution for the world are willing
      to supply that social solution covertly to the general public. That
      this is only discovered by parents only after considerable investment
      in Waldorf is horrible and it is dishonest on the part of the Waldorf
      schools. And it puts a huge questionmark on Anthroposophy and
      Anthroposophists. Anthroposophists should be equally interested in
      holding Waldorf schools accountable for their activities.

      > There needs to be one or more conferences of all concerned people
      > where open communication can occur. It needs to have representatives
      > from Waldorf Schools across the US and the rest of the world, and
      > representatives from parents, and from all concerned parties. Also,
      > experts in education must be invited to offer their views. The issues
      > need to be discussed in depth, completely honestly, and brainstorming
      > on solutions need to be done. The objective of finding solutions is so
      > that Waldorf can improve where actual problems are found.

      The "problems" are not in the education itself (there are problems
      there too, but not what is THE problem). The problems are the
      dishonest way in which Waldorf schools operate. They need to be
      honest about what they do, about the education they provide. Whether
      or not they believe it is the best social solution, it is ultimately
      the parent's responsibility to make decisions about their child's
      education and Waldorf schools are morally obligated to be honest about
      Waldorf education and what it entails. Currently, they are not.

      > Another possibility is to dissolve the Waldorf organisation
      > completely, and rebuild from the base up to bring a fresh approach
      > to everything. I don't know if that would be a drastic step or not,
      > but if it invigorates things and people and brings a uniformly
      > positive atmosphere, maybe it would be a good idea. As I'm not
      > connected to Waldorf, I can't say for sure that any of these ideas
      > would work, but certainly in a general sense I think they make sense.

      I don't think that extreme is necessary. I think Waldorf schools
      provide a good service for people who actually understand what they
      are and want their children to go there. I think they need a huge
      self-examination and some fresh thinking to "invigorate" things. I
      think they would receive a lot less criticism from people if they were
      honest and open right from the first contact with parents, and if they
      made some genuine effort to attract only people who want Waldorf, they
      would see their schools become successful instead of controversial.

      Pete
    • winters_diana
      Deborah/Nana (I guess there really *are* two Deborah s – why my ... While I certainly don t think the topic is a waste of time, I agree there is probably not
      Message 137 of 137 , May 9, 2005
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        Deborah/Nana (I guess there really *are* two Deborah's – why my
        requests that one of them clarify this are ignored, I don't know):

        >Okay Diana, thanks for your many posts. I'm afraid I'm not going to
        >try to respond to all the different posts and points. I don't have
        >that much time to spend and I hope you've got better ways to spend
        >your time, too.

        While I certainly don't think the topic is a waste of time, I agree
        there is probably not a lot to be gained from our debating it here.
        Presumably, you are mostly preaching to the choir here, and I'd be
        arguing with little chance of changing anyone's mind where it might
        count (i.e, a parent with a vaccine decision to make). No, I don't
        know a lot, personally, about either the hepatitis or chicken pox
        vaccines. Now, the disclaimer that is apparently necessary here:
        Nothing in this post says a parent should get their child a chicken
        pox vaccine, and that's not a point I am qualified to advise anyone
        on. I am aware that anti-vaccination rhetoric is often full of
        errors, excesses, and in some cases deliberate misrepresentations,
        and spreads misunderstandings and paranoia about science, and I
        think – as a very general summary – that people need to take a much
        closer look at the religious fanaticism and other fears and
        superstitions that underlie the anti-vaccine crusade historically.

        I would respectfully suggest there is little point in my searching
        around for credible information on the hepatitis or chickenpox
        vaccines for you (for instance), when you've shown you don't have the
        judgment, at least on this topic, to discern what is credible
        information and what is not. I'm sure if you go to Pub Med (or try
        WebMD; that's a credible site), you could, with an hour or two of
        reading, winnow down a few articles that give some useful statistics.
        I'm not going to do 2 hours of research, put it up here, and watch it
        go into the paranoia mill and come out the other end in ribbons;
        rebutting the misconceptions would not be worthwhile. You show a
        dangerous gullibility with the "HIV doesn't cause AIDS" stuff – on
        which I also won't comment further, except to note that the site you
        link to later, if you check the references on the article you
        highlighted, you'll find, with a couple of unimportant exceptions,
        there are few recent references from the leading AIDS journals –
        that, if you're interested, Deborah, is one way to tell if it is
        credible. (There are a few recent epidemiological papers, but I am
        guessing AIDS specialists interpret these data differently.)
        Generally, there is a reason these people are not getting their
        research published in the leading AIDS journals, and the reason is
        *not* conspiracy, or as I think Linda put it, they are being punished
        for stepping off the reservation . . . if you really think it is, we
        must agree to disagree, as there is little I could say to convince
        you otherwise, I'm sure.

        The Mercola site is another example – reading the first 3 or 4
        paragraphs, where he repeats the leading fallacy of the anti-
        vaccination arguments, shows that it is not a credible site, but
        conspiracy mongering. By "leading fallacy of anti-vaccination
        arguments" I refer to the notion that because a certain adverse
        event, problem, apparent bad reaction, etc., occurred in an infant's
        life "soon" (a few hours, a few days, a few weeks) after they
        received a vaccination, that it is likely to be an "effect" of the
        vaccination. I understand that to people convinced that their child
        has been damaged by vaccines, this appears obvious – first this
        happened, then this happened, so there must be a connection - and
        it's a belief that, no matter how simple it is to show the illogic,
        dies very hard. People understandably simply *want* an answer as to
        why a child gets sick. I have debunked this fallacy for you
        previously, Deborah (I don't recall your replying). *Everything* that
        happens in an infant's life happens "soon after" a vaccination, if
        they are getting any. Everything. And then, the fact that many if not
        most of these discrete events are not reported as "bad vaccine
        reactions" confirms in anti-vaccinators' minds that there is a
        conspiracy to suppress the information. (Many of the sites say things
        like "Most vaccine reactions aren't reported.") They simply don't
        understand what criteria would suggest whether something IS a
        possible reaction or not. The pediatricians could as well be
        reporting the child growing and getting stronger as a vaccine
        reaction – that, also, happens in close proximity timewise to all
        vaccinations, in fact, at a far, far greater rate!

        Do you understand the reasoning there, Deborah? Do you see that if we
        are going to call any cold, fever, flu, fussy period, periods of
        turning red or screaming or crying, etc. – the types of things
        parents think may be a "vaccine reaction" because they happened 3
        hours or 3 days days after a shot - or far worse events like signs of
        autism manifesting, we logically need to consider all the POSITIVE
        things that happen in the infants' lives as also possible "vaccine
        reactions"? The reasoning is the same. And that once we do so, it
        becomes baldly evident that MOST babies have wonderful, positive
        reactions to vaccines. Heck we ought to be giving more of them!!
        Babies thrive on vaccination! (Neither is true, probably; the timing
        is a coincidence. Babies haven't been alive long.) But I fear this,
        to you, probably indicates I am on the wrong side, not sympathetic to
        people who have seen something bad happen to their child, and not
        understanding that doctors really don't care if babies get sick (or
        maybe even actually want them to?)

        In short I agree with you we have little to gain from a prolonged
        discussion of vaccination - especially here, with people like Mike T.
        announcing that non-anthroposophists will face Satan for their lack
        of belief, or if they won't say the Bible is a spiritual document,
        etc.

        I'm realizing after a couple days off that it is really pleasant to
        avoid the hostility and lunacy here, especially the really scary
        people like Mike T., so I'm signing off for awhile. I'm sure I'll
        check back in again eventually.
        Diana
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