Socrates, Plato and Education Spending

Inside Higher Ed, Feb 16, 2015
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Dave Brat has it wrong historically, textually, and pragmatically. Brat said, "“The greatest thinkers in Western civ were not products of education policy,” he said. “Socrates trained Plato on a rock and then Plato trained in Aristotle roughly speaking on a rock. So, huge funding is not necessary..." Glenn Raymond Morrow writes, "The temples, houses of public officials, the gymnasia, schools, theatres and prisons mentioned at various times in Plato's text suggests a program of public building reminiscent of Pisistratus or Pericles." What made Plato great, and Athens the cornerstone of democracy, was not private enterprise (which was ubiquitous in the 3rd century BCE world). It was the invention of public policy, taxation, and spending, which made democracy necessary,

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