Editor of the Indy River Journal: “Bob” (Robert McCarthy Zavoda), was born to Robert and Margaret Zavoda, January 1, 1946 in Cleveland, Ohio in the United States; both, children of immigrant parents: His father, Czechoslovakian, was one of seven boys and three girls and his mother, Irish, was an only child, like him. He attended Ohio State University, Columbus ’63-’64, then Lakeland Community College, Mentor, and then transferred to Kent State University, ’66-’68, all in Ohio.
1963 – 1973 were tumultuous times, as the Vietnam War was raging. It tore apart my family. A sorely and sharply divided America ensued. The World War II generation was adamantly against the 1960’s, “turn-on and drop-out” anti-war generation kids of the middle-class who embraced me, a wing-tipped shoes & tie wearn’, right-wing kid, as one of theirs – even though these Hippys – thought that I was perty strange – lol – (the spelling of ‘hippie’ is corporate b.s.). The “lawyer guy” in the 60’s classic, Easy Rider, comes to mind. Played by Jack Nicholson, this lawyer was going through my same culture shock – trying to fit in with the same right-wing adults from whom both he and I had been raised – but had fled, and had never looked back, again. Quoting The 60’s comic book icon, R. Crumb’s character, “Mr. Natural” says to “Flakey Foont” – answering “It don’t mean sheeeeeit, kid!” to “What does it all mean, Mr. Natural?”
In 1971, I moved to Arizona, scraping by and very depressed with the hate going around. I graduated in 1980 from Pima Community College, Tucson, with honors, then transferred to Northern Arizona University, in Flagstaff. While in Flagstaff, Dad died back in Ohio, unexpectedly of a massive coronary that left me with both parents gone. (Mom had also died unexpectedly of a stroke in 1973). I moved to Oregon and enrolled as a transfer student at Portland State University, graduating with a B.S. in Geology, 1986. A summer of study in the wilds of Alaska, in geophysics at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks changed my life. The “alive” of Mother Earth stuck with me. I returned to Arizona, first to Flagstaff then within a year, I found my outdoor paradise that I had wished for since the ’60s (and from where I am writing this piece)!
Work as a geologist in Arizona would have meant another 2 years of graduate study and a greater mountain of debt, which would have been too much of a mental burnout after countless menial jobs, student poverty and burdensome debt, adding up over an eight-year span and 100 semester-hours of recent study, since my time spent at Ohio studies – a total of 130 semester-hours.
So, I tried the public school substitute teacher route to see if teaching would work. Four different K-12 systems in Arizona, preceded a 4-year full-time position, teaching for Pima College Adult Education. I learned first-hand, that public school curricula had been drastically hollowed-out with draconian cuts by greedy plutocrats, the same right-wingers of my childhood days: No more civics or critical thinking skills were taught, or fine arts classes. Eliminated: Theater, physical education, music and field trips. An all out attack is happening, right now and then, on a Liberal Arts education, including Geography, World Literature and “Foreign” Language Studies – almost all gone. In Arizona and elsewhere, the investor, corporate class began then and continues now in messing with our children’s right to happiness – being children. It started with the testing scam and then the new darling of the “leisure capitalist class,” – “Distance Education”! School budgets were slashed, based on standardized test scores. My arse! Cuts were intentional – the banksters, it seems, had temporarily run out of scams to keep their greed pile increasing. Forced mediocrity is what we Americans have presently in our so-called “race to the top” school to prison fiasco – a cruel plan that purposefully hyper-under-funds our nation’s children’s education. Criminal behavior.
We have been wall street’s punching bag for long enough! It’s time to fight back for our rights after thirty-five years of lies, starting with Reagan, right through to the present-day billionaire sponsored neo-cons, lying their “religious” arses off to the religious right. Spouting their narrow-minded, anti-science, abstinence-only dictates to as many as will listen bodes quite well for the right-wing media owners! Then here come the obedient, lying politicians, who are eager to do anything for fame and fortune, while “Rome burns – again”!
For the right price, the aggressive, mean-spirited investor class will dismantle our Public Schools. The middle class and lower rungs of society, are being sacked and lied to, so that these absurd “achievement” tests can “weed-out” the “bad” teachers! What about the crooks and liars manufacturing this fraud? These tests measure only skills deemed useful for the low-paid, technical, “private” corporate slave-like work. Forget Honorable Occupations that matter to a loving civilization. Forget Sacred Spaces. Forget how beautiful a sunrise can be! Brutally monotonous production lines, virtual slave-like plantations mimic so-called jobs – prisons to the human soul.
Only “consumers”, that’s us, now! Virtually owned by multi-national corporations that continue to pump carbon-nuclear poisons into Our Commons. “Industrialization” of our food, now “gmo”, takes the place of what used to be commonly accepted as “organic”, but now it’s a costly “premium” food. Now a blogger within the Independent News environment of the Internet, I am retired and write for this “Babylon-unveiling”, non-corporate, Independent News blog, “Be Solar Dot Info”. I will dedicate all my remaining days to the abolition of all that is nuclear, and champion an immediate zero carbon emissions economy. I long for a return to a democracy by and for the People, rather than military empire foretold by President Dwight Eisenhower; and brought to us 24/7 by a stenographer-ridden, hollowed-out, corporate media of so-called professional journalists who can only catapult numbingly corrosive, spoonfed propaganda!