Friday, April 19, 2019

Interview: Lyndon LaRouche says America's "education system has moved away from real scientific discovery"

Editor's note: This interview was originally published in February 2017.

This is the second of five articles spanning my discussion with Lyndon LaRouche. The first part of our conversation is available here.  
Story by Joseph Ford Cotto 
People have said a great many things about Lyndon LaRouche over the years. 
To be fair, he has shared more than a bit about his own views -- and why not? At 94, he has a lifetime of experience in traversing the maze of politics, economics, science, and cultural pursuits that makes our world go 'round.
While LaRouche's claim to fame is principally of a fiscal nature -- his LaRouche-Reimann Method is perhaps the most accurate economic forecasting model yet devised -- the man has delved into so many different facets of the human experience that one can legitimately elevate him to polymath status.
Whether one should read his views on classical music or space technology, it is a wonder that a single fellow is capable of holding so much knowledge about such a diverse array of topics. Even in the case that his views are found to be disagreeable, it must be admitted that he knows his stuff.
The child of an independent-minded New England Quaker family who served in World War II, LaRouche was imbued with a deep sense of purpose from a young age. Having interviewed the man on several occasions and reviewed his biography, it seems clear to me that, for the immense complexity of his life's work, the overarching goal is raising the bar of civilization so as many people as possible enjoy a more-than-decent standard of living.
Of course, certain voices will point out that he ran into a financial snafu with the federal government, for which he did some jail time, or that the LaRouche organization is run with military-like efficiency -- something starkly unusual for civilian politics.
I say that nobody is perfect. I also say that, given his age and multitude of life lessons, he should be deemed a living historical monument. Special emphasis is due the word 'living' as LaRouche's movement is arguably stronger than ever, thanks to the Internet, and the finely-tuned publishing empire he built ensures that his views will remain in circulation for quite awhile. 
LaRouche spoke with me about several timely issues. Some of our conversation is included below.


Joseph Ford Cotto: The social justice warrior left and the alt-right have found success in spreading their ideas via Internet memes. Memes, by their very definition, are simplistic and emotional in nature. Untold millions of Americans, presumably Millennials in large part, appear more influenced by memes than longer, more reasonable arguments. Has the Internet dumbed down the political acumen of our country's young adults?

Lyndon LaRouche: Yes, but there is of course still the potential of reversing that trend. Human beings are human beings, and once they have hope for their future, they get inspired to improve.  On the Internet making people more stupid, it doesn't work that way. It is not the Internet per se. The education system has moved away from real scientific discovery. Young people think that because they got something from the Internet they know something.

The question is, we have now this new government. Is the new one going to be better than the old? Everything follows from that.

Cotto: In America, entertainment is no longer clearly separated from news. Talk radio hosts, bloggers, and even television personalities devote time to amusing their audiences and vilifying the 'other side' -- delivering a cartoonish version of reality which leaves untold millions misinformed. Is the average American adult now less cognizant of the issues than he or she might have been, say, 40 years ago?

LaRouche: Not quite. It comes from a different way. They are reduced in their functioning to an inferior level, compared to the former, better operation. What has happened is you have the degeneration of the effectiveness of the whole system. The citizens become citizens as such in a real sense, which Trump can do obviously, that's the change, that's the point.

Given the economic data of the state of the U.S. labor force, shorter life expectancies, drug addiction, suicide rates, unemployment, a real effort to increase the real productivity of labor will be required. And Trump will have trouble with this thing as he doesn't know how to explain the argument. Trump himself will understand the argument but many of the people who are involved with him as on his economic team will have to face up to and understand this.


Those last few sentences remind me of a conversation I had with LaRouche going on four years ago. We were discussing the downfall of Detroit, a happening which bore many a cautionary tale for the entire United States.

August 5, 2013 — On Friday, Detroit’s fledgling municipal government informed a federal bankruptcy judge that it wishes to file a restructuring plan by the close of 2013.

Last month, Detroit made history as the largest American city to ever go bankrupt. A local judge initially ruled the bankruptcy unconstitutional under state law, though the federal judiciary later allowed it to move forward.

While Detroit’s present is easy enough to understand, what about its past? What led the city which was once dubbed the 'Arsenal of Democracy' to become a glaring example of dysfunction and malaise?

Veteran economist and politician Lyndon LaRouche says that the historic financial vitality of Detroit “created the great industrial power of the United States.  Even during recent decades, the locations for multiply-capable auto floor-space localities....existed until the actual decision to shut down the essential elements of the U.S. machine-tool design and manufacturing capabilities”.

According to LaRouche, after this happened, “the great power built upon the auto-manufacturing base which had kept the United States economy alive” was sent overseas.
Generally speaking, it remains there. Will Trump be able to change this? For the sake of our nation's livelihood, let us hope so.