Season 1, Episode 1: The Leap Into the Unknown

Ostap Hetman - May 20, 2022 - 0 comments


Daniel Curtis: 0:32

Welcome to the first episode of The (all) Unknowing podcast. Today, Daniel and Peter are going to be discussing the current state of the education system in the United States of America. Now join us as we leap into the unknown. Before we get started, I think it’s prudent for us to talk a little bit as this is our first episode. So the real purpose of the show is to bring forth the unknown possibilities from the realm of the unknown, into the known. And by that, I mean simply that when you know something, when you truly know something, when you believe, you know, something, you don’t open yourself up to the other possibilities that may be so that there’s a lot of opportunity for us to solve common problems in society and the world around us. And we don’t consider them because we’re so focused on one one way of being one mode, one method, Peter, you know, I mean, it is something that you and I have talked about, you know, obviously for years, but have it. So I’m excited. I’m very excited to be here, obviously, and to discuss this topic. So I think it’s it’s a critical component to the future of not just our society, but honestly all societies that find themselves in the state that we have found ourselves in today.

Peter: 1:54

Yeah, I definitely think it’s a very pivotal moment, at least in US history. And I imagine other countries throughout the world are going through the same sort of thing, where we’ve had two going on almost three years now, of the pandemic, that has affected society at all levels. And I think in a lot of unexpected fashions, and probably the most profound has been the impact on the children and young people as their as they went through this. Because the routine, the expected cadence of day to day life just got shot. So it’s one thing if you’re talking teenagers, young adults in college, right, they’re mature, capable, have relatively well formed personalities, and they still may be evolving. And they could more easily cope with this and more flexible, given the nature of their maturity. The impact on school age, elementary school children, I think, is only really starting to be understood. Daniel, you and I privately have talked about this quite a bit. And coincidentally, I caught up with some old friends who I hadn’t seen in a while. And we were who have school aged children, right. And independently, they all noted that the academic impacts were noticeable, the manageable. It’s the psychological and developmental impacts on their children that aren’t being adequately discussed at a broader level, individual teachers are on the ball, they know what’s going on. And they’re trying their best, at least, the ones who are engaged and interested. But this hasn’t percolated up to the broader society, I don’t think. And when it has, it has been in a very nasty partisan manner, which comes from the inherent politicization of the education system, at least in the US as it’s evolved over, say, the last 3040 years. There’s a slight age difference between us which, you know, we know, for sure, but I think that even that slight age difference shows the generational differences that we experienced, you know, again, elementary, high school level and beyond. And I think it’s even more profound when we compare our experiences with what young parents are going through now, you know, late 20s, maybe early 30s, five, six year old kid just entering the school system for real. And I think we, we have to dig into this and kind of share some of the experiences in we have had as well as other other parents. And I think it’s worth mentioning that we intentionally pick this subject as the first topic in what will hopefully be a long series of podcasts. Because this is foundational to everything that comes in society. If you have an uneducated populace, you have a devastated society at the end of the day. So yeah, if you don’t get education, right, at least at the primary secondary level, you’re you’re doomed. And going forward in terms of human evolution. So this is something that it’s very dear to both of us. And I think other people as well.

Daniel Curtis: 5:09

Now, and I think it has to be it absolutely has to be because if you can look at a history book, and you can understand that and you can look forward I mean, we’re dealing with more. The stakes are different now the stakes are different because the rate of technological changes is so drastically different than it has a pretty much any other point in history. And, you know, so what does that do? It enables us to see everything that’s going on around us. And it to an extent, and some people can certainly suffer because of that. And I mean this like, at a psychological basis, because then and we touched on this with the children. You know, I have two school aged children, and they were they did remote learning, for most of the COVID year, they’re laid in spring of last year and into 2020. And, you know, we’re fortunate that, that they have that opportunity. And I realized that a lot of people do not have that flexibility. My, you know, I’m fortunate, I have a lovely wife, she was able to make sure that the way that she kept them on a schedule on a routine, and because she’s able to do that, it helped them to know psychologically that you know, it’s different. Yeah, it’s different and it’s stable. That’s, that’s key stability, right? Because that’s what school aged children need. That’s what people in general need. Let’s be honest, okay. Yeah.

Peter: 6:21

not not to belittle the point. For children. routine, and predictability is key, because it gives them a sense of safety. And if they’re safe, they’re gonna be in a good psychological space to learn, they’ll flourish, they’ll thorough, they’ll get the most that they cannot effectively do.

Daniel Curtis: 6:38

No, absolutely. And it’s not intended, the point that you made earlier is this is not something that’s small, because we don’t know the effects of this, we will not know the effects of this until we look back 10 or 15 or 20 years from now and even even someone astute we’ll have to be doing that people that that actually care that want to drive truth from the matter. Not not in the without a political agenda, as we were previously discussing. I really, you know, it’s in that’s something we have to take up. It’s completely another series, because obviously, we’re not getting anywhere with the way that it’s happening right now. But.

Peter: 7:14

it will kind of loop back to your point about how the pace of technology’s impacted everything, right? I think exactly. This topic is the most germane example of how that rapid technological advance affects things, right? Yes, for the first time, parents were able to see actually what was going on in their children’s classrooms, not what they thought it was not what was going on, when they were in school 1520 2530 years ago. And I think there was a very hard rude and rapid awakening of the unequal way in which different school systems, different schools, different teachers responded. So that we got to see a very different view of the real state of the educational system in the country than what has been popularly portrayed as an example. You know, I do pretty well, economically, I was able to have both my kids in, in private school, right, right. At the time, my daughter was finishing high school, my son is in his, his junior year right now. Their schools said, Okay, this is a mess, give us a week, we’ll figure something out. And the kids will be back in on learning. true to their word they did. So very happy. But I’m paying for it out of pocket. So it was expected. And I guarantee you that all the other parents said something to the effect, to the credit of the schools and the teachers, they responded, that’s great. The town in which I live, had a completely opposite response. And we are not in a particularly upscale town were very middle class type type town. It took the teachers months to figure out what to do it literally months. So I would see these poor kids walking around the neighborhood, not in any malicious way. But just as some way to occupy their time because they were unable to have their, their classroom situation addressed by the town school system. Right. I live in Massachusetts, Boston School System, very large, admittedly, lots of different problems, at all levels, the whole bit different scale of operations, took them much longer to figure things out, and degenerate into a lot of needless bickering in my own opinion. Okay, so now by virtue of what town you happen to live in, you had a completely different response based on whether you’re public versus private, small town versus large city. And all of a sudden, people started asking, Well, if this guy can figure it out at this school, and this headmaster and this teacher, I’ll get it squared away. Why can’t these people over in the larger cities do likewise? Which is very valid question. And rather than address it to say, you know, whatever the case may be, there’s a lot of hand waving, in my opinion, needle is finger pointing, going back and forth. Great. We have now identified a fundamental flaw in how education is delivered to our Children were past the worst of the pandemic are coming out of it. There’s still no discussion of the plan of, Hey, what did we learn? And what are we going to do going forward to leverage these things to improve the experience overall for all kids at all levels? And along those lines? Again, speaking to the gap that you mentioned, between technological access and a little bit, right, yes. Legitimate, there’s a lot of kids out there who do not have the benefit of your lovely wife stayed home, to keep them on the straight and narrow because they had to work legitimately, right? Absolutely. Absolutely. So Gee, I use the truck driver as the proverbial metaphor because, you know, blue collar background, these are the kinds of people that I grew up around, find decent, good people, but they didn’t have a ton of dough. I didn’t go to private school, I went to public school, right? So is it fair, that the truck driver who’s making you know, 40 50,000, an hour a year, delivering stuff that his children do not have equal access, because he can’t afford to go buy them laptops and webcams and have internet access and the whole thing that rapidly starts adding to the bill? Okay, what are you guys going to do about it as a government to serve your constituents? Nothing. And you know, Daniel, but you and I are in the technology business, we know how this could have been addressed, really without that much money. But okay, federal government releases cares money, what happened to it, a lot of towns took it sat on it, I’ve done nothing with it to date, this is a factual dispute it, you and I both responded to RFPs for these things, and know that they all went nowhere, because nobody wanted to pull the trigger on actually executing against anything. So again, who suffers? You and I know, we just move on to the next client, we don’t care. But the the children of the constituents in these towns suffer, because the administration was incapable of acting rapidly and leveraging resources that were in fact available to them to meet the needs and to move forward and to elevate the game for everybody, not just the, the, you know, the the poorest of the poor, or the richest of the rich, this would have helped everybody across the board, where it implemented strategically at a high level with thought about what the impact would be. And I know I kind of went on a tangent, but Well, no, no, no, I

Daniel Curtis: 12:49

By all means, I think it’s important to cover to really flush out the problem here, right? Because it’s at multiple levels. It’s not, it’s not just that there’s a an identified problem with the ability to deliver or respond to a particular incident or pandemic, or whatever it may be. Right, I mean, even and it just for context, were public school. Wisconsin, not Boston, fairly affluent area, it took them about a week to get everybody online, basically, and you know, everybody’s using Google Classroom, Google meet and everything set up, you know, and they had some structure, and they made it better over time. But in this, this goes, just just goes to another thought. I mean, this is, again, it’s a pretty nice area. And the schools, even though it’s public, like it’s rated very highly in the state, like 99th percentile, okay, so you and I know, it draws a certain type of person there, they have a certain structure, they operate in a certain way, there’s accountability. There, there’s accountability from the parents, even even though it’s public school, people are heavily involved in the school. I mean, there’s a lot of money, there’s a lot of donations that happen there. And it’s nice, it’s nice for that. But the real problem there is that if there was a good template for how to respond for how to enable learning for how to get kids, the education that they need to get them the structure that they need, that the schooling, essentially, he’s providing, you know, if it’s working well, and a few ways we need to be we need to be sharing that.

Peter: 14:25

And I think that’s, that did not happen. Exactly. That did not happen. Yes. And this goes to the legacy, I think, of the fact that we’re still running education in the United States of America, on a 19th century mindset, when in fact, we’re trying to prepare our young people for the 21st century and beyond. And stuff that may have worked in 1950 is not going to work and 2022, much less 2030 2040 and beyond, right? Yes. So all of this stuff was going on individual schools figured it out. Why was this not shared with other schools within a system? Or if a particular school system figured it out? Why was it not shared with other school systems? And I’m quite sure we would have a large amount of people saying, well, that’s not true. That happened. I vehemently disagree with that, because I was involved directly with some of the schools on trying to get this stuff going. And the amount of infighting petty territorial pissing, you know, for lack of a better phrase was staggering to me. And especially when I went and I, you know, started trying to help volunteer on certain bases and see, okay, what’s going on? You? Well, we can’t support this in our school why? Well, we’re having trouble. You look into it. You see equipment that hasn’t been touched in literally 25 years, right. from companies that no longer exists. Yeah, using? Yeah. Yeah. Right. And, you know, my immediate question was, what did you guys do with all the money that you got for technology in the classroom? And there was a lot of shoegazing and shuffling back and forth. And at the end of the day, they squandered it on other things, because everything is happening at either a school or a district level, and not at a, you know, city state level.

Daniel Curtis: 16:18

Yeah. And that solution, it’s almost like you’d need something that’s more structured holistically, because anytime we’re dealing with scale, I mean, if you if you want to do a technology project, even for your house, I mean, it’s can be complex, depending on what you’re doing. You know, and at that level, it’s like, okay, this is what we need per classroom. This is the model, this is the method, it’s tested, it’s proven. Now, let’s go replicate that in all the classrooms. Right? That makes sense.

Peter: 16:44

And even beyond that, I’m, I have a connection with me and I have a lot of family and made Right, right. And I’m quite sure that a lot of people in Wisconsin, are in the same situation. Were in Maine, if you’re in one of the major urban centers, say around Portland or Lewiston or what have you, yeah, piece of cake, get broadband, you have multiple providers, multiple price points, you’re good. Well, if you just go 2530 miles outside of these urban centers, it’s not a not necessarily the case, you’re lucky if you have broadband, it’s going to be a lot more expensive. I was shocked when I saw what these people were paying for pretty poor service, then, you know, what’s available in the urban areas. And Maine is a big, big state, Wisconsin, big state, right. So you know, you get out to parts of both these areas. And, you know, you can extrapolate to other parts of the United States. It’s the same situation where a lot of people far apart, no broadband, in fairness, part of the Cares Act money was there to upgrade the broadband and all that what happened? No activity. Right. So here, you could have parlayed a once in a lifetime opportunity to light up rural areas with no real broadband access, right, not satellite in the nonsense that they say is broadband, which we both know, in fact isn’t. And you would have done a great deal to service the broadest segment of your populace that you could, because now, you have special needs kids, right? Okay, maybe they’re, you know, they’re functional enough where they can sit in front of, you know, some kind of device and have remote learning, right? Right. Is it optimal? No, but it still gives them something. And in the case where they can’t do it, okay, pandemic threw a monkey wrench into traditional special ed, processes and all that. Terrible, but, again, it’s one of those things where it’s happened once we’ve had a pandemic and modern times, it’ll happen again. Well, what are we going to do to address the most marginalized and most vulnerable of the population? Still haven’t seen anything? And I understand the argument. Alright, hey, we have to worry about getting everybody back to school. It’s a huge hurdle. I got it. I agree with it totally. But why are we not starting to see comprehensive discussions about this? Instead, we’re arguing back and forth about whether or not kids need to wear masks in the classroom? Do you open the window and all this other nonsense, right? We’re past that those days are done. We’re now on the rebuild phase, we have to reassess and start planning for the future show that if and when this happens, again, it doesn’t have the devastating impact. We have kids who have lost years of development, right? Well, what are you guys gonna do about it? And there hasn’t been any widespread discussion of core infrastructure stuff, or the real other alternatives that are on the internet is free resources that could be brought in to help people with this, you know, kinda Academy what have you, right? Yeah. Why is that not part of a standard? Curriculum, right?

Daniel Curtis: 19:51

Internet based learning, and then by all means, I mean, if you have people, teachers, professors, etc, that are able to create excellent content. Yeah, you know what I mean? And I mean, like, top notch because like, and then there’s always a distribution. It doesn’t matter. Statistically, there’s always a distribution. And if we can get a lot of kids access to things, then I’m talking about learning material. I’m talking about courses I’m talking about all the stuff that the internet can provide Right. This is like one of the greatest things that we can do in this in a connected era. Instead of being the disinformation age, let’s pull ourselves back to the Information Age, let’s use it for the betterment of of children and ultimately for the entire society. I mean, it has to happen, it should happen. And it’s silly that we’re we have to have this conversation right now, frankly.

Peter: 20:46

Agreed. And this is where I think we have to lose this nineteenth century mindset, right? Yes, of kids going to a building in a room with a teacher every day all day to have something drilled into them by rote learning. Right? Okay, I understand I’ll get a lot of flack for that statement. And it’s an oversimplification. But I make it as an illustrative point for, you know, hey, why does it have to be that way? It doesn’t. Is there a benefit to it? Yeah, absolutely. Right. Absolutely. With with a skilled educational professional, with a good curriculum with engaged kids, a lot can happen. A lot of good can happen. When you’re in a classroom exchanging ideas back and forth. You know, for the little kids, all right. This isn’t necessarily appropriate, the old way, may be the better approach.

Daniel Curtis: 21:40

I think, on that, specifically, is this social interaction, you know, in early early ages, you know, ages two to four or five even. I mean, you’re learning your role, like how to interact with people, other people. I mean, it’s critical. You have to have that. Yeah.

Peter: 21:55

Absolutely true, especially when we start talking about special ed kids. And, you know, trying to mainline them as has been the approach for so long, a lot, a lot, a lot, a lot of benefit to that. I think where I bring a disagreement to it, is when you start talking about the older kids, middle school, high school and beyond. Yeah. Yeah, definitely a lot of value to classroom interaction. But is that the be all end all of it? And, you know, why not find world leaders in particular fields? Especially, you know, academics, right. I mean, for people in the professional field, this isn’t viable. But academics love to talk about their work. They love to lecture. It’s part of what being an academic is, yeah. And the ability to do it through platforms, Khan Academy, the UX thing, or whatever that accent. Yeah. I mean, that’s phenomenal. Right? Sure. And could you approach these people and have them lecture class? Maybe, right? It’s easy enough. Look what we’re doing with Zoom, and we’re, you know, 1500 miles apart right now, right?Daniel Curtis: 23:04

Yeah. Oh, absolutely. There’s no reason why they couldn’t, there’s no reason why there couldn’t be an engaging method of learning. Even if it were done for, you know, 10,000 students across 15 states, you know, it, we can make it happen, obviously, I mean, you go to college as a new take classes, where there’s four or 500 people in the class, if you go to an auditorium to take the class, I mean, okay, am I still getting the information? Do I get the knowledge? Yes, I do. Now, the learning mechanisms, I mean, identifying and I think this is another failure of the school system, I’m sure, we’ll talk about this, it’s like identifying the fact that there are different ways to learn, and the different individuals process information differently. And that, you know, it’s not it’s, it’s the, the round hole in the square peg with the square pegs the size of a car, and the round holes, the size of a coat can write like, you know, they don’t mash. Okay, but that doesn’t mean that it’s wrong. Right. So,Peter: 23:57

yeah, everybody is unique in their personality, their their particular gifts. Yeah, they’re all going to learn different, right? Yes. So this is an accepted fact, I don’t think any rational person is going to dispute that. So if that’s the case, why do we cookie cutter education for all of the kids the same way? At the same time, right, as long as they cover the same material? And understand it appropriately? Yes. You know, hey, maybe, you know, a little Johnny needs to be in there with the teacher explaining it to him and asking a lot of questions, because that’s the way little Johnny learns. That’s fine, actually.Daniel Curtis: 24:33

And maybe instead of instead of carving up classes, you know, and then some random distribution, it’s like, you know, to the 60th percentile these kids learn hands on, right, there’s really, so put them in these two classrooms, and these two teachers can take care of it,Peter: 24:49

because your teachers are specialized to understand that and to teach them in a most effective manner. Right. Yeah, I think this is this is what’s missing on a lot of things. And I think it also ends up adding a lot of undue stress on teachers, because we know this.Daniel Curtis: 25:05

So I know that does for a fact. I know it does. I’ve talked to many. Yes. Right.Peter: 25:09

So you know, these people are out there. They’re professionals. They’ve dedicated years to learning this. Why don’t we carve it up and specialize so that there’s their particular talents are applied to the group that will benefit them.

Daniel Curtis: 25:22

That’s the key word If that’s apply, why are we not applying it in a manner and to me, this is a failure of all of everyone here, everyone. That’s not, that’s not a child that is above college age, it is all on us to make it better. It’s not up to the children to tell us that they’re unable to learn, or that we, you know, as a society, as we advance technologically, as we advance our understanding of the human mind and the capacity to learn, why aren’t we taking that and bringing it out in a way that’s consumable, that have specialized individuals resources, to your point that have been trained, you know, on all types of cognitive things? And especially, you know, in this case, particularly to learning mechanisms, and identifying that maybe are we damned if we go and try to identify that the way that children learn based on I don’t know, like millions and millions of children that we’ve probably processed and analyzed? I mean, how long does it take you to figure out the best way that you learned something? It took me.

Peter: 26:20

Well, okay, now, yeah.

Daniel Curtis: 26:22

Well, it’s easy, but when you’re young Peter, right. Yeah, yeah.

Peter: 26:27

Understood. And I think that’s part of what might be lacking. All right. There’s an overemphasis on standardized testing. I’m sorry, it has a place. Yeah. But later, right. What is not emphasized enough? Is teaching children at all levels, how to think so that young kids can learn the fundamentals of logic, procedure, etc, etc, right? Yeah, sure. You know, how do you get to three? Well, you add one plus one plus one, and you get to three, so on, right, right. Take the tried and true methodology, and still the core of teaching kids how to learn at an early age, and then they’ll be able to develop their own particular learning style as they mature. I think there’s not enough of this, there’s too much focus on a one size fits all approach, a one size fits all.

Daniel Curtis: 27:24

Because the measure of accountability at the school level is to take this exam and X percentage of your children have to pass that exam. And it’s like, just bashed it into their heads, right. But it’s with everything that I did. And I’ll go through this in life, it doesn’t matter if I’m learning something which I tried to do. I learned stuff all the time. It’s just how my mind works. But it’s like, if it’s not what I’m learning that satisfies me, it’s that I know how to learn and I’m applying it in a meaningful way that I’m getting better at something. Right, right. So and I think that that’s to, to your point, that’s a little bit what’s lost. It’s not that two plus two equals four, it’s that any combination of numbers in any any way, shape, or form can equal four, and it’s how are you going to solve that problem? Right, right. Yeah.

Peter: 28:10

And again, the the teaching have a methodology and an approach to solve, right? What I found interesting is that when I was in school, we had, again, we’re talking junior senior year high school, right? There was a lot of effort paid, since we were on a college preparatory path of hey, you’re gonna have to take a lot of standardized tests going forward, meaning LSAT, immediately, but down the line licensing exams for accounting or what have you, there’s a million professions out there that require it, hey, there’s a way to take these tests to maximize your chances. Really, I didn’t know this. Tell me how. And we worked through, you know, the fundamentals, you know, multiple choice, you eliminate the obvious errors, and then you try and figure out what’s left on the others, you go from a one in four chance down to a one in two chance. Right? Okay, great. That’s a way to learn in a way to solve a particular problem. In terms of standardized testing. I, I’ve asked both my, my kids, they didn’t do that. Right, I had to pay for extra course, even with private school, to, to have them learn how to take SATs and later professors licensure exams, right? I think this is the sort of thing that has to get addressed, because people want to talk a lot about inequity in education. And I don’t believe that necessarily, there is an inherited equity in education. I believe there’s an inequity in the quality of the instruction and education through various factors. And part of it is along this right? You take the kids through school, you give them all this knowledge, some of it useless, some of it quite useful, but then you never teach these kids from the beginning. how this affects reality. Right? How does this matter to you in the real world? And even I was talking to my daughter, she’s in college, right? I said, Hey, you know, do do they cover any financial classes with you guys? And she’s like, nope, not unless your business major. So they’re telling you go ahead and get loans in Crewe perpetual debt, and no idea if you’re ever gonna pay it off. She’s like, Yeah, basically. Well, you know, clearly I’ve had these kinds of discussions both my kids But I was not amazed, I would say disappointed that given the way societies progress given what a hot button issue, student loan debt is at the collegiate level economics in general, yeah, right. Right. Nobody has talked to them. Right. And I dug, I dug into it a little, I think maybe this is a discussion for another show. But, you know, financial literacy one on one, right? What what are we not prepping our kids for? And why is everybody struggling so much? Right? Again, the core is 19th century education for 21st century world, and not prepping? Anybody at any level of it for the variety of circumstances that you’re going to encounter? And what it really means, right? What’s garbage? What’s gold? How do you have the kids differentiate between it in the real world? Not the academic world?

Daniel Curtis: 31:13

Absolutely. Absolutely. How do you use it? It’s like, I’m teaching you math. Here’s some practical examples. And I’m not talking about here’s a math word problem that maybe helps me measure your executive like functioning skills as you interpret the the modes and means of that paragraph and translate it into something meaningful, ie the answer that the teacher needs, or expects. But, you know, you might be one day sitting at the store. And you might say, well, I hand this guy a $10 bill, because I wanted a box of cookies, and the box cookies is $8.88. So now I know immediately in my head, I need $1.22 back, and I’d probably give it to him as a tip anyway, right? But you know, just just just for the sake of the argument, you know, I need that or it’s like, I need to buy a car. Because while I need to get to work now that I have a job, and I can buy this car, and you know, maybe I can get 4% from the credit union. And I don’t even know what that means. Because the dealership says I can walk out of here today, with zero down, if I sign here, you know, truth be told, you’re paying eight and a half percent on that one, or whatever it may be. And without understanding how compound interest works, you don’t understand the total debt and what your cost per month is. Or factored on top of that, that, Oh, now I have to pay insurance. And I’m gonna have gas. And I’m and so I’ve just just concept a total cost of ownership, right? And then I can even break that down into a cost per mile, essentially, that’s driven. And if I’m not allocating that in some way, or my income isn’t greater than a certain threshold, I’m going to have financial problems.

Peter: 32:46

Right? We all want the Ferrari. We all want the Ferrari. But there’s a reason Toyota is number one in America, right? It’s ever said,

Daniel Curtis: 32:52

Yeah, it is very popular. I might buy a Corolla I’m not even joking, man.

Peter: 33:02

This is a show topic in its own.

Daniel Curtis: 33:04

So it is, it is. And I just want to, again, the first show, I just kind of wanted to touch on it, because it’s it the lack of common skill knowledge in the translation, because there’s plenty of things that I that I’ve read, and I think very abstractly, right? And I can read it, and I can sit there and think about it, and I can pull information out of it, I can come back and think about it’s more like while I’m walking back yard a week from now, right? And then I’ll be like, Oh, then I’ll probably connect the dots. Probably. What I found in life is that isn’t typically the case for the average person. And if those of us who know can convey what those concepts are and how they relate, then I think we’re, you know, at least in my eyes, trying to leave the world a better place. And then that just comes from the basic understanding of how things work in the observe

Peter: 33:49

which, which I think, ultimately is the goal of education, and which gets lost in so much of the senseless rhetoric and bickering that goes around. Yes, the whole purpose, as stated from the beginning, is to create the virtuous man to you know, take the ancient philosophers phrase of it. Right, right. So okay, now we want the virtuous man and 21st century or woman, right? Well, how do you do that quality education at all levels? That isn’t politicized. And that doesn’t assume mediocrity. We need to instill excellence in the kids. And if we do that, we have a winning society at all levels.

Daniel Curtis: 34:32

I can’t agree with you anymore on that statement. I mean, it’s it’s not about as you’re stating, here. It’s not about lowering the bar for everyone so that everybody crosses the line. It’s about keeping the bar high, because without something to a mat. Yeah, right. What what are we going to hit the ground in, in this case? I don’t want to hit the ground. I want to hit the target. Right, right. I mean, I mean, it’s kind of I mean, you’re of Greek heritage, right. And I have a there’s a lot of great philosophical works in Greek history. And some of my favorite books actually are written for problem, you know, 2500 years ago. And it makes me laugh, really in my head not Not, not not not in a funny way, but it’s like, how much is there to gain from the knowledge of past societies from the knowledge of past brilliance that we cannot even take and consume here and apply To solve, you know, in I read a book like The Republic, right, and it just captures verbatim, the state that we sit in right now. Yeah. In that and you don’t even have to think too abstractly to see it. I was baffled the first time I read that I was like, Wow, here we are. And I kind of think back to it. You know.

Peter: 35:48

I think that says something pretty profound, though. Right? Where 2500 years and you know, you can take other examples as well, right, Rome, Egypt, what have you. This is human nature has not changed, since we first formed any kind of society. Right, right. You go to uncontacted tribes in the middle of the jungle on New Guinea, South America, what have you, they still have family structures, they still have societal customs, they still have societal expectations that need to be transmitted, and everybody wants to be the best within that society. Right. So if it’s so universal, clearly, it’s an inherent part of what it means to be human. It absolutely is. And if that’s the case, then strip all this technology aside and everything else and start teaching the kids how to be excellent. And that there is a methodology that, you know, life essentially is a game with rules. You need to learn those rules, so that you can play the game and hopefully win it. And if you don’t win it, at least you don’t lose it. And this is, I think, something that needs to be emphasized a lot more than it has been.

Daniel Curtis: 36:57

It has it has to be I think life is it’s a blank canvas for us all. Yeah, to go and do something to do something perhaps meaningful to do something that, you know, I think every single person that lives that is a conscious being has something in them, when you look at something, when you’re drawn to something, you’re drawn to some subject, you’re drawn to certain things, do you even consciously choose that, right? Like, did I wake up one day and say, I’m going to be a computer guy, for all intents and purposes or was like the money? I wish I was, you know, it just happened that way. Right? But I mean, I was like seven or eight years old. And I was like, Look at this huge book that my mother has for COBOL programming, and I’m, like, start reading it. And next thing, you know, I’m writing software on her computer. You know, and okay, that that’s not the story for everybody. But the point that I’m making there is that I was drawn to it. Yeah. Why was I drawn to it? You know, why when when, when when I look at something, I don’t try to be like the worst at something. And I’m sure you don’t either. And many of the people that we know don’t like we want to, we have to drive towards excellence. I think part of it fundamentally and again, probably a topic for another show, because I could get into the psychology of this all day long. But it’s that the the main emphasis here is that if we don’t strive towards excellence, okay, we are destined to die. And I’m talking that as a society, if you touched on it, if our other societies that we can observe even uncontacted societies, they have social hierarchies, they have dominance hierarchies, they work within them, they fill roles, they, they want to achieve excellence, they have to achieve excellence, because if they don’t, they don’t eat. D, these are the new we’ve been kind of like, surrounded by luxury, I call it like luxury beliefs almost because we get to As Americans, we get to view the world, some of us get to view the world through a certain like, you know, tinted glass here, and it takes the reality away from the situation that, oh, we have to work. And if we don’t work, then we don’t try to get better that someone else in the world is going to do that. Because now we’re a global economy. It’s not just the economy of Wisconsin and Massachusetts, or the United States, right? We are eating right, exactly. We’re playing this game and whether or not you want to admit that you’re playing it or not, you’re playing it. You know. So if you don’t want to get better at the game that you’re playing, which is, you know, being a member of society in the 21st century, then I don’t know what you’re doing. But we certainly want to help you.

Peter: 39:41

And I think on that note, we have an hour, maybe we bring the show to a conclusion, and take up a new topic next time.

Daniel Curtis: 39:50

Absolutely. I think part of part of what I’d like to do in this series in the continuing episode is we certainly have a lot more to discuss on on the education system. And we’re certainly looking for feedback from from our viewers, as far as you know, other content that we’d like to see, and we’ll be sharing that subsequently. So thank you all for listening. Peter, thank you very much for your time, sir.

Peter 40:01

Thank you, Daniel. Always a pleasure. You as well. Talk to you soon.

Published: May. 20, 2022 @12PM

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