Being Erdkinder – in relation to politics

I’ve been observing the continuing changes that are taking place behind the scenes to the British economy. That being the sale of many of our public and private services to foreign investors. For example, our train operator Arriva now belongs to Deutsche Bahn and if anybody wonders what EDF energy stands for, it’s Electricite de France. India owns Jaguar Land Rover and goodness only knows where the royal mail will end up.

And then I found it really interesting this week when I heard Max Keiser describe the British enomic climbate as turning to a ‘Neo-feudal’ state. Where you have the wealthy capitol holders and all the proles pay rent for the privilege. It wouldn’t be the end of the world to reach that point, especially since with the advances in medication, technology and greater spread of ownership of capitol goods among the working man (a British man’s home is his castle). However it isn’t what we particularly want either, especially for our quality of life.

So why are we selling ourselves down the river? Well. In university this semester I have been studying the psychology behind education, and have been looking at the Erdkinder model of education described by Maria Montessori. She observed the Erdkinder (german: children of the land) going about their operations, and noted how they understood the relationships between work and upkeep, as well as the relationship between cooperation and upkeep (Kahn, 2003).

An ‘Erdkinder’ school in Germany; Photo credit:

As society has gotten increasingly more global, that connection has been lost. Even though it should be obvious, the way to get fed is no longer to shoot your own elk, but it’s often to work for a large corporation as only a single small node of the operation, or live on state handouts. Of course there are other options, however these are common examples of how the natural connection between work and upkeep is conditioned out of people. This is psychological behaviourism in action, and it is taught to children from day one of their primary education.

It’s not hard to see then why the (should be) alarming notions of selling our capital goods to foreign countries are taking place. It simply goes over their heads when governments describe it as an academic means to an end of solving our economic woes.

There is a false mediation between work and upkeep, and it needs to change. Schools need to stop teaching to token qualifications, and start demonstrating cause and effect on where things come from. When youth reach adolescents, they start to wonder where they fit in to the world (Rathunde, 2001). That is the point when they need to see how things really work, where and how the things that control our quality of life are produced. Adolescence is a pivotal point, and an education that is in line with the psychological contract described here can set them for life.