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Tea Party Summer Camp
June 15, 2011 8:50 AM   Subscribe

"Starting in an austere room where they are made to sit quietly, symbolizing Europe, the children will pass through an obstacle course to arrive at a brightly decorated party room (the New World). Red-white-and-blue confetti will be thrown. But afterward the kids will have to clean up the confetti, learning that with freedom comes responsibility." This, and many other fun activities from The Paideia School of Tampa Bay's Tea Party Summer Camp.
posted by XQUZYPHYR (125 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
For increased educational value, once they reach the party room, they should kill all the people who were already in it.
posted by Trurl at 8:53 AM on June 15, 2011 [98 favorites]


Thank goodness these would-be cornpone Nazis are incompetent idiots.
posted by General Tonic at 8:54 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


Paideia doesn't mean what they think it means.
posted by Apropos of Something at 8:57 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Children will win hard, wrapped candies to use as currency for a store, symbolizing the gold standard. On the second day, the "banker" will issue paper money instead. Over time, students will realize their paper money buys less and less, while the candies retain their value.

In the hot Florida sun, won't the candies become sticky and covered in pocket-lint?
posted by Greg Nog at 8:58 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Children will blow bubbles from a single container of soapy solution, and then pop each other's bubbles with squirt guns in an arrangement that mimics socialism.

I never got to mimic socialism at my summer camps.
posted by graventy at 8:59 AM on June 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


What was that they where saying about Obama indoctrination camps?

Seriously I think all the "complaints/fears" they had where just things they wanted to do in the first place. I "look forward" to TeaParty backed death panels disguised as eugenics lessons.
posted by edgeways at 9:00 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


Children will blow bubbles from a single container of soapy solution, and then pop each other's bubbles with squirt guns in an arrangement that mimics socialism. They are to count how many bubbles they pop. Then they will work with individual bottles of solution and pop their own bubbles.

"What they will find out is that you can do a lot more with individual freedom," Lukens said.



Oh, for fuck's sake.
posted by likeso at 9:00 AM on June 15, 2011 [20 favorites]


This country's future is soooooo fucked.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:00 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


edgeways That's what phasing out Medicare for private insurance basically is. The health insurance industry has had actual, genuine, no fooling, death panels for decades.
posted by sotonohito at 9:03 AM on June 15, 2011 [11 favorites]


On a (not-really-)related topic: 'Tea Party Summer Camp' sounds like the title for the worst teen sex comedy film ever.
posted by spoobnooble at 9:03 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


These are people whose voice in politics we are supposed to recognize as valid and worthy of respect.
posted by Legomancer at 9:03 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


while the candies retain their value.

and then in true free market fashion the candies will be hoarded by a few kid who then will make the others literally shovel shit for 1/2 a lifesaver a day.

-or-

the biggest kid threatens to beat the crap out of other kids unless they pay "protection sucrose" and the counselors get to step in and act like the ATF, wheee.


Seriously it sounds like a bunch of TP-ers got high one night and belted this out it's pretty damn funny.
posted by edgeways at 9:04 AM on June 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


There is room for 40 students in the Tampa school and as of Monday, eight had signed up. The fee is $15.

That's what they'll pay the kids, right?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 9:05 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


You know what I call freedom? Being able to choose not to throw the fucking confetti in the first place. Though I'm sure that falls under the banner of "I will share [this un-asked-for 'teachable moment'] with who I want to"* -- for the adults, at least.

*Which isn't even grammatically correct. Oh, these poor, poor souls.
posted by Madamina at 9:05 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


I liked this movie better when it was about a hot tub that was also a time machine.
posted by mightygodking at 9:06 AM on June 15, 2011 [6 favorites]


The camp eventually turns into a Animal-Farm like metaphor when the adults vanish and they overthrow the capitalistic system by learning the virtues of sharing.
posted by The Whelk at 9:06 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


Can we call these poor kids the Palin Youth?
posted by Mister Fabulous at 9:06 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


A Tea Party-sponsored party room? 'The cake is a lie' has never been so appropriate.
posted by spamguy at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [14 favorites]


This country's future is soooooo fucked.

Oh, come on, let's not be overly dramatic. This is no worse for America than the kids just sitting at home all summer being molested by their step-dad. And besides, ther will probably be just as many kids at Peace-Camp down at the Quaker Retreat Center to balance them out, so we're good.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


The TRUE Americans will be the kids who raid the candy stash and take it all for themselves, and then convince the other kids that they actually deserve even more.
posted by elizardbits at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


It occurs to me that if they're just store-bought candies, any kid could cajole his/her parents to buying more outside the camp, so said kid could have additional candies to redeem for goods and services. That could be a valuable lesson about hereditary wealth.
posted by Greg Nog at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [26 favorites]


On a (not-really-)related topic: 'Tea Party Summer Camp' sounds like the title for the worst teen sex comedy film ever.

Wet Hot American Summer

Triumph of the Will
posted by joe lisboa at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Jefferson wept.
posted by entropicamericana at 9:09 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Also, will this be anywhere nearly as fun as Jesus Camp?
posted by Mister Fabulous at 9:09 AM on June 15, 2011


I hate you, home town.
posted by penduluum at 9:10 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Children will win hard, wrapped candies to use as currency for a store, symbolizing the gold standard. On the second day, the "banker" will issue paper money instead. Over time, students will realize their paper money buys less and less, while the candies retain their value.

Until the bank runs out of candies, and tells the kids that if bring some of the candies back for "safe keeping" they'll get a little extra candy next time...but the kids know, there was only one bag's worth of candies in the first place, there's no 'extra candy' to pay the interest, so the Candy Bank is FULL OF LIES.

Then the candy bank issues bank-created specie to cover their debts, and the Tea Partiers go, "no, kids, bank-issued specie is fine because it's not federal! Don't you get it?
posted by AzraelBrown at 9:10 AM on June 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


I find these lessons very confusing; I wonder what on earth the kids will make of them. You must throw confetti and then you must clean it up? That really sounds like any other play time in pre-school-- you get the toys out and play with them and when play time is over you clean up. As to sitting quietly in a room, that's called "Mommy has a headache" or "Naptime." Calling it "Europe" isn't going to change anything.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:14 AM on June 15, 2011 [6 favorites]


And then the little jewish kids will burst in with their melty, chalky Chanukah gelt and rule the universe as god intended.
posted by elizardbits at 9:14 AM on June 15, 2011 [12 favorites]


"What they will find out is that you can do a lot more with individual freedom," Lukens said.

Oddly, since what they will really find out is just how quickly this decays into Lord of the Flies, this camp will teach the merits of government oversight.
posted by stevis23 at 9:14 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Wait a minute. I thought us commie pinko liberals were gonna be the ones with the indoctrination camps.
posted by cmyk at 9:16 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


How is popping bubbles socialism? Seriously, I can't wrap my mind around that part.
posted by cereselle at 9:17 AM on June 15, 2011 [6 favorites]


Starting in an austere room where they are made to sit quietly, symbolizing Europe, the children will pass through an obstacle course to arrive at a brightly decorated party room (the New World)

Later, the children will return to Europe though the obstacle course, which has been altered to resemble a cheap package-tour cruise ship and they will be required to loudly ask HOW MUCH IS THAT IN 'MERICAN DOLLARS at every possible opportunity.
posted by chococat at 9:18 AM on June 15, 2011 [10 favorites]


Jefferson wept.

Actually, Jefferson was a small-government guy - deliver the mail, run a navy, sign treaties, but that's about it; sadly, he's too liberal pinko for the Tea Partiers to really embrace him.
posted by AzraelBrown at 9:19 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Maybe this explains the Tea Party's fascination with the gold standard...they think all those gold bars and coins are filled with yummy, yummy chocolate!
posted by malocchio at 9:19 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


I think that the theory is that you "made" the bubble - and someone else gets to enjoy its use by popping it, when it is your GOD GIVEN RIGHT to pop your own damn bubbles, thank you very much, amen. You suckers are going to have to pry my bubbles from my cold dead hands.
posted by jph at 9:19 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is fantastic. I'm crossing my fingers that this will catch on and work out very much like how I was raised going to Catholic Sunday School and such in that it completely turned me off to it by the time I hit puberty.
posted by Maaik at 9:19 AM on June 15, 2011 [9 favorites]


http://images.google.com/search?tbm=isch&q=facepalm
posted by DreamerFi at 9:20 AM on June 15, 2011


Ugh, in my small-type I meant "fiat currency", not "specie". Too many fancy words.
posted by AzraelBrown at 9:20 AM on June 15, 2011


What was that they where saying about Obama indoctrination camps?

Seriously I think all the "complaints/fears" they had where just things they wanted to do in the first place. I "look forward" to TeaParty backed death panels disguised as eugenics lessons.
posted by edgeways at 9:00 AM on June 15


Something something the savagery we imagine in the Other is a projection of our own savagery something something...
posted by johnnybeggs at 9:20 AM on June 15, 2011


From the article comments:

Gee, wish they'd had something like this when my kids were younger so I could have threatened them with it if they didn't behave.
posted by cereselle at 9:20 AM on June 15, 2011 [9 favorites]


Children will blow bubbles from a single container of soapy solution, and then pop each other's bubbles with squirt guns in an arrangement that mimics socialism.

No, they'll blow bubbles and then drop the bubble solution to squirt the other kids. One will slip on the solution and get a head wound, which will bleed mightily, freaking out everyone there.
posted by eriko at 9:21 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


What if everyone voted to squirt the counselors with the squirt guns?
posted by Sticherbeast at 9:22 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


But afterward the kids will have to clean up the confetti, learning that with freedom comes responsibility.

But...that's not really true; people are not free on the contingent basis that we act responsibly, unless you construe "responsibility" to consist in not committing crimes, and that seems like a anomalously unusual usage.

We want children to grow up into responsible adults, but this formulation makes it sound like only people who can be, like, trusted to be responsible can have freedom, which makes freedom a privilege that's distributed by authorities to those they deem deserving, which makes it not actually freedom at all.
posted by clockzero at 9:23 AM on June 15, 2011 [15 favorites]


and get a head wound, which will bleed mightily, freaking out everyone there.

which then will have to be tended by the "nanny state".
posted by edgeways at 9:23 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Perhaps more importantly, does this mean that the tea party is coming out in favor of environmental protection in general, or only that which ensures a confetti-free ecology?
posted by clockzero at 9:24 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just yesterday in Walnut Creek, CA on the same block as Tiffanys and The Apple Store was a Tea Party gathering. Their main poster was of President Obama as Adolph Hitler.
The Hitler comparison was appropriate, not for what they see it as but for what it really is.

What will be or Kristallnacht?
posted by pianomover at 9:24 AM on June 15, 2011


Exactly,eriko. I don't think these people have any idea as to how children really act or think.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:25 AM on June 15, 2011


There's no environmental problems because the thermostat works perfectly and always has.
posted by seanmpuckett at 9:25 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Have you ever tried to hit a soap bubble with a squirt gun?

It's hard.

Like Socialism.
posted by The Whelk at 9:30 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm trying to imagine what I would make of such a place as a child, because I know the weird political stuff would be over my head. I think I'd mostly be focused on how fast I could eat my candy before some adult made me play yet another stupid game with it.

Which would actually be the most appropriate metaphor for this ideology; eat too much hoarded stuff that's bad for you, and then turn it into shit.
posted by emjaybee at 9:32 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Our
posted by pianomover at 9:32 AM on June 15, 2011


At what point do they teach them to be racist misogynistic bigots?

Do they feed them a bowl of dog poo and tell them it's chocolate ice cream? This symbolizes that you can't trust anything dark.

Do they make half the kids learn Klingon and then beat them up for being nerds? This symbolizes that English is the only real language. All those others are just stupid made up things.

Do they change all the keyboards to Dvorak without telling them? This symbolizes the illiteracy we've come to expect from Tea Party People. Spelling is not required.

Do they have grand clan wizards come in for career day? This symbolizes the crappy paying job you'll end up with, so might as well learn how to volunteer in civic organizations.

Do they drop acid? This symbolizes the way Michelle Michele Bachmann thinks. Bring the crazy!

Do they have the Jesus? Because Jesus symbolizes America man!

Do they have a Muslim loyalty test?

I am waiting for one candidate to step forward and say that the Tea Party is the worst of the Republican Party. That the GOP may share a core fiscal value with them, but other than that they are fucking evil.

I loved the idea of a grassroots, fiscally conservative, constitutionalist party. Unfortunately the Tea Party is not this party. It's a bunch of nutjobs that need to learn the meaning of sacrifice and buck up and do something other than bitch. It's easy to say the other guy's ideas suck, but when you're only a fear mongering obstructionist without ideas newer than Reagan, you need to get off the damn pot, Obama needs to take a shit.
posted by cjorgensen at 9:35 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


and get a head wound, which will bleed mightily, freaking out everyone there.

which then will have to be tended by the "nanny state".


No, they'll have to pay for treatment. Hopefully they have enough candy in reserve, instead of spending it all at the store. Shore up capitalism, kids! But not too much, or you'll fail the personal responsibility test!
posted by cereselle at 9:36 AM on June 15, 2011


Where do I sign my kids up? My 7-year-old would have all the candy by the day's end, and my 4-year-old would become the embodiment of anarchy and have all the kids riled up without even trying.

In other words, just like every day at my house - I should open a branch of this camp right here!
posted by Lulu's Pink Converse at 9:37 AM on June 15, 2011


I find these lessons very confusing; I wonder what on earth the kids will make of them. You must throw confetti and then you must clean it up? That really sounds like any other play time in pre-school-- you get the toys out and play with them and when play time is over you clean up..

From what it sounds like, this guy has no idea how children learn, or even how children play. I doubt he's ever bothered to read or speak to anyone who knows anything about childhood education. He's just making all this stuff up himself, because hey, aren't teachers all socialists?

But that's not surprising. Among conservatives, experts are not to be trusted. Have a master's in early childhood education? You're probably some indoctrinated liberal and the so-called "qualifications" you've earned are just a fancy bunch of mumbo jumbo techniques that anyone with common sense could do. So why not have a "conservative writer" come up with an educational curriculum? What would a teacher know that he doesn't?

My guess? If this ever goes forward, the kids will come out no more or less conservative than they would have been otherwise.
posted by mcmile at 9:37 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


I want to rename the "gold standard" to the "Corvidae Policy"; that is to say, "Oo, shiny!".

Candy's more valuable to me because I can eat it. I will totally give these kids some stupid shiny rocks for some delicious candy. And I've had my vaccinations, unlike the last people to do this (and possibly some of these kids, as well).
posted by curious nu at 9:38 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Sign Up.
posted by cjorgensen at 9:39 AM on June 15, 2011


Congratulations, they managed to make my time travel themed Vacation Bible School experience retroactively less stupid.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:39 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Starting in an austere room where they are made to sit quietly, symbolizing Europe...

Once, when I was in England, someone assumed I was Canadian. This is why I took that as a complement.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 9:39 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just yesterday in Walnut Creek, CA on the same block as Tiffanys and The Apple Store was a Tea Party gathering. Their main poster was of President Obama as Adolph Hitler.

Just as loonie, but not Tea Baggers.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:41 AM on June 15, 2011


I want to rename the "gold standard" to the "Corvidae Policy"; that is to say, "Oo, shiny!".

There is no way Corvids are dumb enough to back the gold-standard.
posted by The Whelk at 9:43 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


I think that the overblown, sneering media coverage of this tiny, silly, otherwise obscure summer program for the members of a fringe-group-within-a-fringe-group is what's amusing about this story.
posted by Wylla at 9:43 AM on June 15, 2011


But that's not surprising. Among conservatives, experts are not to be trusted. Have a master's in early childhood education? You're probably some indoctrinated liberal and the so-called "qualifications" you've earned are just a fancy bunch of mumbo jumbo techniques that anyone with common sense could do. So why not have a "conservative writer" come up with an educational curriculum? What would a teacher know that he doesn't?

Real Conservative pedagogues hold children's hands to stoves to demonstrate the eternal fires of Hell that await the unworthy.
posted by acb at 9:45 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am really curious how these things will work. They will artificially create inflation in paper money but not the candy, so kids -- the ones who didn't eat their candy -- end up preferring it? Will they have a trade relationship with the camp next door?

Popping someone else's bubbles is far more fun than popping your own. And I don't get why Europe -- which has a much more liberal alcohol culture, for instance -- is a boring plain room.
posted by jeather at 9:46 AM on June 15, 2011


The campers will be provided a "talking conch," but with no authority to stop other people from talking, the kids will learn that freedom can only come from themselves.

"We look forward to killing the pig, cutting her throat and drinking her blood," said Jack, one of the counsellors.
posted by klangklangston at 9:47 AM on June 15, 2011 [12 favorites]


cereselle: "How is popping bubbles socialism? Seriously, I can't wrap my mind around that part"

Well that's your problem right there.
posted by brundlefly at 9:47 AM on June 15, 2011


Well, somebody's bubbles have been popped, that's for sure.
posted by briank at 9:50 AM on June 15, 2011


The organization, which falls under the tea party umbrella, hopes to introduce kids ages 8 to 12 to principles that include "America is good," "I believe in God," and "I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable."

Have there been any Tea Party people who have articulated how they reconcile their generally extreme religious faith* with their idolization of vocal atheist Ayn Rand? Or is this just ignored? I know some non-Tea Party evangelicals have been critical, but I haven't heard anything from within the movement.
posted by brundlefly at 9:53 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


And I don't get why Europe -- which has a much more liberal alcohol culture, for instance -- is a boring plain room.

Only a TRUE American can understand this, jeather.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:53 AM on June 15, 2011


*This is the impression I get anyway.
posted by brundlefly at 9:54 AM on June 15, 2011


I think that the overblown, sneering media coverage of this tiny, silly, otherwise obscure summer program for the members of a fringe-group-within-a-fringe-group is what's amusing about this story.

Are you referring to the singular, rather straightforwardly-written article in a relatively minor newspaper? Or are you expressing a distaste for talking about anything substantive in preference to having a vapid and banal conversation about other peoples' reactions to things, like our utterly useless news media are apparently largely content to do?
posted by clockzero at 9:57 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


AT My camp when the children arrive they are randomly given bags with candies. Some kids get no candies. Some kids get 1. One child gets 5. The store where they redeem their candies has broccoli for sell at the price of 3 candies but for 10 candies they can buy an entire party with ice cream cake and little sandwiches and cookies and soda. I ask, "Who wants to play "Tea Party"? then I tell them they cannot pool their candies. I ask, "Who wants to play "Socialism"? and I tell them they can get together and pool their candies but whatever they buy must be shared by everyone-- even the ones who have no candies to contribute.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:57 AM on June 15, 2011 [66 favorites]


I'm glad I grew up in the age between child labor and Tea Party Summer Camp, when childhood was fun.
posted by tommasz at 10:01 AM on June 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


acb: Real Conservative pedagogues hold children's hands to stoves to demonstrate the eternal fires of Hell that await the unworthy.

Assuming that the above is a reference to the utterly vile "Child Training" advice of the Pearls, there are quite a few real conservatives (pedagogues or not) who actively work to oppose them.
posted by Wylla at 10:03 AM on June 15, 2011


Oh wow that idea of the kids going through the austere Europe room and coming out to the American party room is just brilliant involuntary irony. I am laughing so hard.

But they should turn it up a notch to make sure the lesson is more memorable. Like I don't know, make the kids go through a replica of the catacombs of Paris, or Lenin's tomb, or even, why the hell not, a concentration camp, and then come out and woo hoo it's Disneyland!

Sorry but really... if that's what they're trying to do, why not just do it big style you know?

Poor kids.
posted by bitteschoen at 10:07 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Hi kids, I'm Clav and todays lecture in the outdoor forumn/ gun range will be: The Constitution. Ok, you, with the sig-sauer p239, can you tell the class how many feet is the optimal shot for the 2nd amendment?"
posted by clavdivs at 10:08 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Have there been any Tea Party people who have articulated how they reconcile their generally extreme religious faith* with their idolization of vocal atheist Ayn Rand?

Why would you think they would care about this when they ignore the exact same issue with, you know, Jesus?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:18 AM on June 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


Are you referring to the singular, rather straightforwardly-written article in a relatively minor newspaper? Or are you expressing a distaste for talking about anything substantive in preference to having a vapid and banal conversation about other peoples' reactions to things, like our utterly useless news media are apparently largely content to do?

No, I'm referring to the re-posting and re-tweeting of the one article in this and several other fora (MeFi was the third time I've seen it today), apparently for the sole purpose of allowing people like us to have the same group-giggle we're having now, while passing our group-giggle off as talking about something substantive.

It's a poorly-constructed summer program for a small number of kids in a fringe group. It's not news.
posted by Wylla at 10:18 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Assuming that the above is a reference to the utterly vile "Child Training" advice of the Pearls, there are quite a few real conservatives (pedagogues or not) who actively work to oppose them.

But they're not True Scotsmen Conservatives. In fact, they probably are secret progressives who don't reject the so-called Enlightenment and might even secretly believe in evolution and women's rights and other similar tenets of Cultural Marxism.
posted by acb at 10:19 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's not news.

This isn't a news site.
posted by benito.strauss at 10:26 AM on June 15, 2011 [5 favorites]


XQUZYPHYR: "Starting in an austere room where they are made to sit quietly, symbolizing Europe...

Symbolizing Europe?!?! Have these people actually ever left Tampa, let alone the US?
posted by DarlingBri at 10:33 AM on June 15, 2011


and "I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable."

Ahh, the god-given right to be a bigoted asshole.
posted by Theta States at 10:34 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Government cannot force me to be charitable.

"Remember to share your toys"

"NO!"
posted by The Whelk at 10:35 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


No, I'm referring to the re-posting and re-tweeting of the one article in this and several other fora (MeFi was the third time I've seen it today), apparently for the sole purpose of allowing people like us to have the same group-giggle we're having now, while passing our group-giggle off as talking about something substantive.

It's a poorly-constructed summer program for a small number of kids in a fringe group. It's not news.


Flagged as noise. You're not obliged to contribute if all you want to do is complain about how often you've seen something that doesn't seem important to you.
posted by clockzero at 10:36 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


They're teaching kids to be teabaggers at camp? No wonder it's become a problem in schools.
posted by homunculus at 10:39 AM on June 15, 2011


Popping someone else's bubbles is far more fun than popping your own.

Ya'll can come over and pop my bubbles anytime. Just give me a little bit of warning so I can brush my teeth and tidy up.
posted by marxchivist at 10:41 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wow. So idiotic.
posted by agregoli at 10:46 AM on June 15, 2011


But afterward the kids will have to clean up the confetti, learning that with freedom comes responsibility.

Why are they making the kids clean up a mess that they didn't ask to be created on their behalf?
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:46 AM on June 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


cause that's what we the taxpayers are being asked to do!
posted by The Whelk at 10:47 AM on June 15, 2011


But they are making it sound like a positive.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:49 AM on June 15, 2011


It's a poorly-constructed summer program for a small number of kids in a fringe group. It's not news.

FWIW, before last summer everyone was pretty dismissive of the Tea Party, just a fringe group, won't amount to much. Yeah they are kind of a fringe group, but they have at least two mid to high level players in the Republican Primary now, and many of the other candidates are at least paying lip service to them, which (for better or worse) is more then the Liberal wing of the Democrats have done in a long long time. The TP-ers certainly have driven a lot of the political debate these past two years.

I would not be shocked to see a few dozen of the camps pop up over the next year or so. Still not major numbers, but worthy of comment.
posted by edgeways at 11:04 AM on June 15, 2011


When I read the first couple lines of this post, I thought it was going to be about Henry Ford's English School. It sounds similar:

"In 1915, Henry Ford decided to compel his foreign employees to attend his own Ford English school. The first thing foreign-speaking employees learned to say in the Ford school was: "I am a good American." Later the students acted out a pantomime that supposedly symbolized the spirit of the company. In the performance, a great "melting pot" occupied the middle of the stage. A long column of immigrant students descended in the pot form backstage, dressed in outlandish clothing and flaunting signs proclaiming their fatherlands. At the same time, from either side of the pot, another stream of men emerged, each prosperously dressed in identical suits of clothes and each carrying a little American flag (Higham 1967: 248)."
posted by marxchivist at 11:12 AM on June 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


Children will blow bubbles from a single container of soapy solution, and then pop each other's bubbles with squirt guns in an arrangement that mimics socialism.

This seems like an argument for (squirt) gun control to me.
posted by madcaptenor at 11:13 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


When I was little I grew up in a deeply conservative household, in a very conservative community. Everything from outside was bad, because Christians are supposed to be in the world, not of it. So a camp like this for me would have been just the thing for my mother.

But it didn't work, because for whatever mysterious reason I was born being a xenophile. So every time I heard something was different or foreign I couldn't rest until I learned all about it. I automatically assumed strange things were awesome, and it usually turned out to be so.

A lot of these little kids are going to end up rebelling by being infatuated with all the things they're supposed to hate, and we'll all have a hearty laugh.
posted by winna at 11:17 AM on June 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


Throwing the confetti because you're told to and then being forced to clean up the mess you were encouraged to make symbolizes the housing bubble. Yay, taxes!
posted by Eideteker at 11:27 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Children will blow bubbles from a single container of soapy solution, and then pop each other's bubbles with squirt guns in an arrangement that mimics socialism. They are to count how many bubbles they pop. Then they will work with individual bottles of solution and pop their own bubbles.

"What they will find out is that you can do a lot more with individual freedom," Lukens said.


Well, you can definitely fuck up shit faster.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:29 AM on June 15, 2011


On the other hand, I'm reminded that socialists used to have indoctrination camps:

Stromberg was a nineteen-year-old member of the Young Communist League, an international organization affiliated with the Communist Party. In the state trials, the charge brought up against her was in relation to a daily ceremony that took place at the camp where she worked as a teacher. During the ceremony, Stromberg supervised and directed the youth in raising a red flag, and in pledging allegiance to “the workers’ red flag, and to the cause for which it stands, one aim throughout our lives, freedom for the working class.”

Ironically, the case, Stromberg v California, overturned the 'red flag laws' that prevented communist/socialist/anarchists from displaying their flags and 'pledging allegiance' to them -- not on 1st Amendment rules, but based on the 14th Amendment and due process of law, that states couldn't make things illegal just because they feel like it. All we need to do is overturn the 14th Amendment, and we can make all sort of laws punishing displaying the Gadsden Flag. If only there was some political organization interested in getting rid of the 14th amendment...
posted by AzraelBrown at 11:33 AM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO LEBRON JAMES NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO ON NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO SARAH PALIN NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO.
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 11:33 AM on June 15, 2011


AT My camp

I would love to see that version of the game actually put into practice with both a group of elementary school kids and with a group of adults.

I bet the results with the kids would give me cause for hope in our world's future while the results with the adults would be dismal, especially if, for the adult version, you made sure some of the bags with no candies were given to an appropriate "other" for the preponderance of your group (e.g., if you had a group of mostly black adults, see to it that many of the non-blacks got the bags with no candies).
posted by lord_wolf at 11:33 AM on June 15, 2011


During the ceremony, Stromberg supervised and directed the youth in raising a red flag, and in pledging allegiance to “the workers’ red flag, and to the cause for which it stands, one aim throughout our lives, freedom for the working class.”

I pledge allegiance to the Christian flag...
posted by cereselle at 11:38 AM on June 15, 2011


Children will also be taught survivalist techniques such as how to hunt and gather, decontaminate water, build natural shelters, which will serve them well during the final week of the camp, where they will each be armed with a different weapon and dropped on a deserted island and instructed to destroy each other or forever remain the vassal slaves of socialism.*

*Not an actual quote.
posted by jph at 11:54 AM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


...pledging allegiance to "the workers’ red flag, and to the cause for which it stands, one aim throughout our lives, freedom for the working class."

cereselle: I pledge allegiance to the Christian flag...

All we need now is to throw everything together with a Bellamy salute, and heads will start exploding, like Communist bubbles shot by Socialist squirtguns.
posted by AzraelBrown at 11:57 AM on June 15, 2011


...where they will each be armed with a different weapon ...

They will not be told until the night before the airdrop onto the island that the weapon they're assigned is based by the number of candies that they kept all the way until the end. Oops, spent too much, or got hungry? Here's your spork, prole.
posted by AzraelBrown at 12:01 PM on June 15, 2011


And at the end of each day, the top-performing child gets to smash the conch and make fire with Piggy's glasses.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:07 PM on June 15, 2011


$15, eh? That's a bargain.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:16 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


This will be about as effective at making kids right-wing nutjobs as the Stations Of The Cross was at making me a devout Christian. I therefore give it my lofty blessing.
posted by Decani at 12:34 PM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


The Europe room should be filled with awesome model trains and the America room should be stacked three feet deep in Matchbox cars and filled with smoke.
posted by backseatpilot at 12:53 PM on June 15, 2011 [16 favorites]


The first thing foreign-speaking employees learned to say in the Ford school was: "I am a good American." Later the students acted out a pantomime that supposedly symbolized the spirit of the company.

Ha, and yet I find that a lot more understandable as a form of patriotism than this - they were immigrants, people who had chosen to go the USA, they were grown ups, this was in a company, not any company either but one of the iconic American companies, and well it was 1915...

This is a fringe thing but it's about kids, and kids who grew up in America, so it's ten tons weirder than that.
posted by bitteschoen at 12:59 PM on June 15, 2011


"In 1915, Henry Ford decided to compel his foreign employees to attend his own Ford English school...."

By Ford, I wonder if they had to memorize this line from the Tempest:

O, wonder!
How many goodly creatures are there here!
How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
That has such people in't!

posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 1:11 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Tampa Liberty was organized into corps under adult leaders, and the general membership comprised boys aged fourteen to eighteen. Tampa Liberty was also seen as an important stepping stone to future membership of the Tea Party.

Tampa Liberty was organized into local cells on a community level. Such cells had weekly meetings at which various Tea Party doctrines were taught by adult Tea Party leaders. Regional leaders typically organized rallies and field exercises in which several dozen Tampa Liberty cells would participate.

Tampa Liberty maintained training academies comparable to preparatory schools. They were designed to nurture future Tea Party leaders, and only the most radical and devoted Tampa Liberty members could expect to attend.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:49 PM on June 15, 2011


Oops, I accidentally pasted in parts of Wikipedia's article on Hitler Youth and replaced "Nazi" with "Tea." My bad.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:49 PM on June 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world,
That has such people in't!


Funny that. My great grandfather had a Ford dealership (1919) and at some point I believe all the dealerships had a picture of Henry Ford in the lobby. True, all of them in Michigan had them. Ironiclly, grandy Burke looked like Ford (he met Ford enough times to say hello “Mr. Ford“, for which Mr. Ford would reply in kind because, he knew your name) none the less someone remarked one day
“why what a nice portrait of you Mr. Bowes”
“Oh no, that is Mr. Ford Governor.”
posted by clavdivs at 2:40 PM on June 15, 2011


Just yesterday in Walnut Creek, CA on the same block as Tiffanys and The Apple Store was a Tea Party gathering. Their main poster was of President Obama as Adolph Hitler.

Yeah, at a grocery store near my work there was a guy who set up an Obama/Hitler poster... the grocery store where all the local Jewish folks go to get their bagels and lox. He wasn't there long.
posted by Huck500 at 2:47 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Church summer camps, non-church summer camps, and even anti-church summer camps are pretty common in the US, most with their own games and rituals. This one probably does less than most- it meets 3 hours a day, for one week - in all likelihood, the list of activities in the article is the full schedule, with one 'game' a day.

While this one may present itself as somehow affiliated with The Tea Party (whatever affiliation would mean), it's actually a project of a single meetup group and (seemingly) affiliated with one small evangelical Christian school -there are 21 kids attending as of now. That's what I meant when I said that this wasn't worth the mass-overreaction-and-Hitler-comparison-fest it's created. It's not a training school for the future leaders of anything.

I'd even be willing to bet that this entire thing was intended to cause (at least local) controversy. The leaders of this meetup group look to be trying to assert themselves as 'the voice of the Tea Party' in their area - the controversy around this will help them do that...at the cost of only $15 each and 15 hours of confusion and boredom for their kids (who do get candy and confetti, so its not all bad, I suppose). The internet has obliged the organizers beyond their wildest dreams.
posted by Wylla at 3:08 PM on June 15, 2011


$15, eh? That's a bargain.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 3:16 PM on June 15


I know, right? If they meet 5 days even if it is only for an hour (the article said "mornings") that is $3.00 an hour, much less than you pay for day care or a babysitter. Sure the instructors are spouting nonsense, but I would trust my child to attend them without getting brainwashed. If you were able to enroll your kid's best friend they would probably have a ball rolling their eyes, screwing up the games, asking silly questions.

If you follow the link inside the original newspaper article you get information on Glen Beck's Vacation Liberty Schools which are free. Unfortunately the kids will have to have a history lesson when they get home because at Beck's school they learn:
about how many of the early colonists starved to death after arriving in the New World because everything was shared under what lecturer Tim Fairfield described as a communist system. The deaths from starvation ended after families were given their own land and possessions
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:09 PM on June 15, 2011


No no no, I don't think you guys understand how this socialism mimicry works.

See, they give the kids one bottle of bubbles. Everyone gets a wand. Everyone gets a gun to shoot bubbles. THAT's socialism.

Then, they fix it. They give every kid a bottle of bubbles. And a wand. And a gun. THAT's capitalism.

I think for this to really come across maybe all the kids should share a wand and a gun. But as far as tortured metaphors go you can't get much more tortured.
posted by graventy at 3:11 PM on June 15, 2011


meets 3 hours a day, for one week

Ooo that makes it a dollar an hour!
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:11 PM on June 15, 2011


Little Timmy had to sit in the corner wearing the LIBRUL cap after refusing to play pin the noose on the welfare queen.
posted by BrotherCaine at 3:11 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


They pull a bubble wand, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue. *That's* the *Chicago* way!
posted by entropicamericana at 3:22 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


"I believe in God," and "I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to.

Ah so THAT'S what Jesus was trying to say!
posted by Max Power at 4:23 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Hey, as long as they keep their kids as stupid and misinformed as they are. It's a race to the bottom!

Folks, this current generation of tea-baggers is the smartest one you will see. Their own politics almost guarantee they won't have the sense to come out of the rain a few generations from now.
posted by clvrmnky at 5:49 PM on June 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


So, the first thing I started thinking, overall, was that a lot more bubbles would overall be both created and popped if certain kids were doing the blowing and other kids were doing the squirting and you didn't have to keep switching between the two, and you had a few minutes to get good at it, and yeah.

Is this why I'm a socialist?
posted by gracedissolved at 8:48 PM on June 15, 2011


No, gracedissolved, it just means you are capable of critical thinking which is something the director of this summer school is not. Here is a breakdown for that activity:

1. He is assuming that individuals will be able to break more bubbles if they blow them themselves. Why he is making this assumption, I don't know. Maybe some individuals will, maybe some won't.

2. He is assuming that the kids will find it equally enjoyable to pop their own bubbles. Why he is assuming this I don't know, in fact this is the weakest part of the experiment/lesson.

3. He is assuming that by demonstrating (if everything goes according to plan) individuals can blow and pop more bubbles on their own, the kids will be able to apply this lesson to other areas of their lives. Why he assumes this I don't know. Even kids understand that playing baseball by yourself is not as fun as playing with a group, that plenty of activities such as Thanksgiving Dinner are better done by individuals working/playing/eating together than by doing the activity alone as individuals.

Each one of the activities planned shows a complete lack of critical thinking and awareness as to how real life works.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:04 AM on June 16, 2011 [2 favorites]


Each one of the activities planned shows a complete lack of critical thinking and awareness as to how real life works.

Hell, the Tea Party overall shows a complete lack of critical thinking and awareness as to how real life works.
posted by elizardbits at 8:00 AM on June 16, 2011 [3 favorites]


meets 3 hours a day, for one week

Ooo that makes it a dollar an hour!


Yeah, but you have to pay it in gold dollar coins.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:49 AM on June 16, 2011


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