In 2005, the ﬁnal year of the previous chapter's story of neo-Marxist educational scholarship, the world seemed to most Leftists and liberals a nasty place. By 2005, conservative hard-liners were in charge, former President George Bush had invaded a country on false pretenses of ‘weapons of mass destruction,’ and we were paying for, and ﬁghting but not winning, two separate wars. Democrats and Republicans alike had slashed the social safety net for low-income families until it was the weakest of any advanced capitalist country in the world. A very small group of families and individuals had captured almost a quarter of the wealth in the United States. Education and teachers were being pushed and pulled so that students were tested, tested, tested, with scant progress to 66show for it. 1 As the consequences of standardized testing increased, more and more urban low-income students dropped out of school (or, according to some, were ‘pushed out’ to increase test performance of their schools). I, for one, felt that things couldn’t get much worse.