22-02-19 06:39:00,

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Koch Network Pushes Deceitful Textbook on Cash-Strapped Schools

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Education & Youth

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I was one of a number of community residents who reviewed the textbook, Ethics, Economy and Entrepreneurship (EE&E), proposed for use in Tucson Unified School District high schools.

To me, the first clue that this textbook lacked academic integrity was when the authors, three philosophy and marketing professors, began their section on trade 40,000 years ago with the claim that the Neanderthals became extinct because they “weren’t entrepreneurs.” Further nonsense included the idea that Jamestown failed because the settlers didn’t have private property rights, that American bison almost became extinct because Native Americans drove them off cliffs, and that towns were founded before agriculture.

Once they get to economics, the authors avoid any major event that challenges their belief that unregulated, “free-market” capitalism is the best of all possible economic systems. Shockingly, they completely ignore two of the most significant economic events: the market crashes of 1929 and 2008.

Lastly, while 90 percent of working people will work for employers rather than for themselves, the authors champion entrepreneurship over employment to high school students without indicating the success rate for entrepreneurs under the age of 40 is limited.

The EE&E textbook does not adhere to textbook guidelines recommended to educators. It was not written by experts in the field, peer-reviewed and published by a reputable publishing house — it is published by Sagent Labs, which is owned by the authors. Moreover, the textbook does not have footnotes, an index, a bibliography or references to help students distinguish between credentialed subject matter experts and propagandists. Why the textbook was written, though, is an interesting tale of dark money advancing libertarian propaganda.

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