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Portugal has a socialist education policy

“Portugal blocks remote lessons at private schools to help state pupils”, the Times reports.

Portugal has blocked private schools from offering remote learning for at least a fortnight amid fears that more privileged children will gain an unfair advantage over their poorer counterparts after the closure of state schools.

The minority Socialist-led government of António Costa, the prime minister, had said this month that schools would remain open. However, political pressure over soaring Covid-19 infections forced it to announce last Thursday that schools would be closed from the next day.

A decree forced all schools to take a two week holiday, with the government saying that allowing private institutions to teach remotely would put state-school pupils at an unfair disadvantage.

As a commenter, “Mr N D” says, “The headline is misleading. This isn’t helping anyone at all, it’s making sure that everyone is held back.”

11 comments to Portugal has a socialist education policy

  • Ed Turnbull

    “making sure that everyone is held back” – socialism defined in just half a sentence.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes – the way the headline and the story are written the grip of socialist ideology on BRITAIN – not just Portugal.

    But, yes, socialist ideology is actually written into the Constitution of Portugal (the consequence of the military coup “Revolution” of 1974). Portugal is a fine place with good people – held back (just as Britain is), by bad IDEAS.

    And, at the risk of offending some people, I have to point out that there is more than Marxism at work in all this.

    Take the famous Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII in 1891 – written partly under the influence of Cardinal Manning (of Britain), but also based on Pope Leo’s own memories of being an administrator in one of the remote parts of the Papal States (which still existed in his youth) – where the wealthy were bandits (not the “robber barons” of the LIES of American journalists and novelists – but REAL bandits).

    According to the Encyclical of 1891 (basic to the thinking of the modern Roman Catholic Church on economic questions and government policy) “capitalism” has led to the impoverishment of the masses and a massive increase of moral degeneracy.

    This was NOT TRUE – people were not poorer in 1891 than they had been in previous centuries – they were LESS poor.

    As for the claim of an increase in moral degeneracy – the claim is, to be blunt, just false. Society was clearly not more morally degenerate in 1891 than it had been in 1791 or 1691 or 1591 or 1491.

    HOWEVER, such men as Pope Leo XIII and Cardinal Manning clearly believed these false historical claims, and their bad economic suggestions (NOT socialism – but an increase in government spending and regulations) are partly the result of their false historical beliefs.

    They are also a Catholic reaction to the statism of the Protestant Bismark – who in Prussia-Germany had laid the foundations of the first Welfare State, and the British Prime Minister Disraeli – who, in the mid 1870, started the expansion of British local and national government and gave special privileges in law to trade unions (because he believed that “capitalist” employers need to be “counter balanced” by unions and collective bargaining).

    The Catholic Church did not want to be “left behind” by the statism of Protestant Prussia, or the “Social Reform” (statism) that was just starting to emerge in Britain – and so whent down the same road, and created an intellectual superstructure (Social Teaching) for increased government spending, regulations and union power.

    The end result of such policies will be de facto bankruptcy and mass unemployment – not just in places such as Portugal (which can stand it – people will return to the farms of their ancestors, Portugal will survive), but in the United Kingdom of Mr Johnson and the United States of Mr Biden.

    From Benjamin Disraeli to Alexander Johnson has been a long and winding road – but it is a road of ideas (well meaning ideas), just as the road from Cardinal Manning and Pope Leo XIII to Joseph Biden is a long and winding road – but is also a road of well meaning “help the poor” ideas.

    So, I repeat, there is a lot more than Marxism at work here – there is an entire political culture in the West that is CONVINCED (utterly convinced) that higher government spending, more regulations, and union power (Collective Bargaining) is the way to go.

    And this political culture is mistaken – terribly mistaken.

  • Paul Marks

    Far more than any city in Portugal – some cities in the UNITED STATES show the end results of the false political culture that government must “help the people”.

    Take the examples of New York and Chicago – the largest and third largest cities in the United States. There is no way the finances of these cities can survive – no amount of “Biden Bailouts” can save them. Run the numbers any way you like – these vast cities are doomed. The “government must help the people” doctrine has doomed them.

    Yet there is no chance of a change in the political culture – for example the Cardinal in Chicago may, privately, not care about the teaching of the Church on homosexual acts, or abortion, but he devoutly worships GOVERNMENT – no problem (in his mind) is caused by government spending being too high, only too low, and regulations never (in his mind) make problems worse – ever more government spending, regulations and UNION POWER (to “counter balance” employers) is the way to go – in his mind, and he is typical of the political culture of Chicago and of the Western World.

    It will fail – this political culture in places such as New York and Chicago will lead to economic and social collapse. Not just in these cities (which, I repeat, will soon be vastly worse than any city or town in Portugal), but in the Western world generally.

    I just watched to “Prime Minister’s Question Time” in the United Kingdom and there were indeed questions from “Opposition” M.Ps. about the incredibly high level of government spending – but the questions all wanted even HIGHER government spending. No one denounced the “lockdowns” (which have failed to prevent one of the highest Covid 19 death rates in the world), or the incredibly high level of government spending – I repeat, they wanted even MORE government spending.

    There is no way that such a political culture (one of unlimited government) can lead to anything else than disaster – yes it is not formally “socialism”, but the end result will be the same – societal collapse. Remember what Ludwig Von Mises called the “alternative” to socialism offered by unlimited government spending and regulations – he (in the concluding part of his book “Socialism”) called this path “Destruction” and he was correct. Unlimited government spending and endless regulations (such as lockdowns) may not formally be socialism – but it will lead to the same terrible collapse.

    Portugal will survive – the people will continue to fish and farm and make goods. I am not so sure about certain other nations.

  • Alan Peakall

    This goes beyond the comic pusillanimity of the UK’s 1979 Winter of Discontent; then, when strike action closed school kitchens, a headmaster, advising parents that he could not allow teachers to supervise pupils eating packed lunches for fear of condoning strike breaking, was prepared to concede that:

    Pupils who normally bring packed lunches will not be affected.

  • Dr Evil

    I hope the schools ignore this ridiculous decree or send their pupils work books to keep the pupils intellectually occupied.

  • Sigivald

    Too bad they can’t have their state schools actually teach kids, I guess.

  • lucklucky

    Yes it is the Marxist education minister here, they are not happy already destroying children in public schools they also want to destroy everyone else.

    Btw we just got a Presidential election… the mainstream is shocked that André Ventura a so called “extreme right” candidate got in 3rd place with almost 500000 11% votes. And it defeated the Communist Party candidate in several strongholds in Alentejo province, a traditional staple of Communist Party.
    He could have got more votes if he wasn’t a former media commentator linked to Benfica football club. Here in Portugal we have lots of football debates in TV and partisan commentators for each of 3 main teams are usual: SL Benfica,FC Porto, Sporting CP.

  • andyinsdca

    And the trees are all kept equal
    By hatchet, axe and saw

  • JohnK

    I remember when John Prescot was Tony Blair’s “deputy prime minister”. He actually said that if you freed schools from local government control, and allowed them to compete for pupils, the “danger” was that the good schools would attract too many pupils! That is the socialist mindset in a nutshell. I honestly do not think he realised that he had said anything out of the ordinary.

  • sch

    As andyinsdca says sometimes it is just the Rwandan solution: Cut the tall trees down.
    Anyone who by virtue of intellect, social or economic status, success or accomplishment is grist for the axe.
    Even favored classes (athletes/pop or entertainment stars/politicians) are not always exempt.

  • MadRocketSci

    While the impetus is typical socialist malevolence, maybe this generation of kids will be left alone long enough to actually learn something. Who the hell ever learned anything in grade school?

    Isaac Newton created most of mechanics, because due to the lapse caused by another (far more real) plague, his civilization left him alone long enough to THINK. Imagine what might be accomplished if we only stop dominating our childrens’ time.

    Imagine what might be possible if our society could ever stop dominating our *adults’* time!