In 1978, Michael Hart wrote his famous book ‘The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History. We earlier wrote several articles about him and some of his personalities. Anis Mansour, the Egyptian writer, who promoted the idea of a basket of necromancy, translated the book into Arabic and attributed it to himself, after changing its title to: ‘The 100 (Greatest) Personalities in History’. There is a big difference between the greatest and the most influential, as Adolf Hitler, Stalin and other criminal figures were among the book’s characters, not because they are among the greatest, but because of their bad influence on their people and the world, and thus the difference is clear. In my article three days ago on education in Kuwait I mentioned that Khaled Al-Masoud was one of the three most influential people in education in Kuwait. Some understood that there was praise in the matter, not realizing, perhaps, that the most influential does not mean praise in all cases.
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Khaled Al-Masoud was a good patriotic personality, with initiatives and diligence, and not every diligent is right, because of his failings that we still suffer from, and have deeply negatively affected the education process, which we will have to bear with for a long time. One of the failures of
Al-Masoud was the establishment of the Institute of Teachers when he was Minister of Education in 1965. He restricted the study years at the institute to two years, after which a student obtained a diploma and a salary that the diploma holder was eligible to.
He also granted those enrolled at the institute a monthly stipend of 40 dinars, w h i c h was a large sum at that time, so everyone who was unable to catch up with the outstanding students joined the institute. In the absence of any criteria in terms of eligibility (marks scored) to enroll at the institute, the academic level of the majority of those who enrolled during the early days was poor, and some of them were friends, acquaintances and families. That was when the education in Kuwait was sabotaged, which the members of the Muslim Brotherhood party continued to and continue to do till date.
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The Chinese proverb says, ‘Do not give me fish, teach me how to fish’, meaning if you give a man a fish you feed him for a day but if you teach him to fish you feed him forever so that he will not be hungry. Western wisdom states that a bar of iron costs $5, made into horseshoes its worth is $12, made into needles its worth is $3,500, made into balance springs for watches, it’s worth is $300,000. Your own value is determined also by what you are able to make of yourself.
The secret, or the difference between the profit rates in both cases, is called ‘science’. In the area of knowledge, the world has overcome us. We have fallen far behind. With knowledge the West made gave us everything, and we are satisfied with the food they fed us. With knowledge, they explained everything to us, and we believed in conspiracies. With knowledge they have controlled us, and we remain at the bottom.
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Note: Further to our article yesterday about asking some to evaluate the desert, M. Sabah Al-Rayyes drew our attention to the fact that Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem ordered on 10/19/1953 to make 97% of all land state property, blasting any ‘funny’ evaluation demands. In an interview with the poet and narrator of Jahra Mohammad bin Tifla Al-Ajmi (2011), Rida Al-Faily mentioned that the main tribes of Kuwait are only three. For whom are the lands valued, Abdul Hadi? Here is the link to the interview at: https://www.youtube.com
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By Ahmad alsarraf