Soft Power follow-upPosted: March 8, 2012
The magazine “Monocle” has covered soft power in previous issues and, amusingly enough, about 24 hours after I put the previous post into the queue, they ran another article featuring a hard/soft comparison that was very similar to mine – I hadn’t seen it and, obviously, they neither saw nor cared about mine but the coincidence amused me. However, other discussions of soft power in the media include what will happen to the Cato Institute, which has had a significant cultural influence (whether for good or ill I leave to the reader) and now appears to be moving towards a less diverse controlling board. I’m not advocating for Cato (most certainly not) but this is a salient reminder that soft power is used by many different people to attempt to carry out non-military or confrontational change for whatever they consider to be the correct way to live or carry out activity x.
Putting Education into this sphere of “things that you should really think about” seems even more appropriate in this context. But, and it’s a big but (and I cannot lie), it is as easy to place material into the public eye that attacks teaching as it is to defend it. Regrettably, enough people are influenced by the first argument that they say which even vaguely aligns with their beliefs – it becomes a fact and attempts to argue against it just reinforce the fact. What this means to me is that positive, constructive examples should be seen everywhere.
Which comes back to us. I’m still a bit jet lagged but it’s right on top of my to do list. “Be educationally excellent – frequently.” 🙂