How free market ideology perverts the vocabulary of democracy


How Propaganda Works, Author: Jason Stanley.
The New Jim Crow, Author: Michelle Alexander.

By Jason Stanley – Free market ideology uses democratic vocabulary as propaganda, obscuring a non-democratic reality.

Take education. In a liberal democracy, education equips citizens with the tools and confidence to weigh in on policy decisions and play a role in their own self-governance. Hence, democratic education is at the very center of democratic political philosophy, as the philosophies of Jean-Jacques Rousseau [2, 3, 4, 5], W E B Du Bois [2, 3, 4, 5], John Dewey [2, 3, 4, 5] and Elizabeth Cady Stanton [2, 3, 4, 5] attest.

But the US rhetoric surrounding education is explicitly anti-democratic. Citizens prefer ‘efficient’ education systems that train children to perform vocational tasks, rather than education that fosters community, autonomy and civic participation.

The rhetoric politicians use when running for office is usually explicitly anti-democratic. Managerial culture is paradigmatically undemocratic: a CEO is like a feudal lord.

Free market ideology has perverted democratic vocabulary, transforming it into propaganda that, in turn, obscures an anti-democratic reality. more>

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