We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Tuesday, April 12. 2016
Well, you have to laugh. Socrates would have laughed, because these children are 100% immersed in Enlightenment Western Civ, and don't even want to know what it is or where it came from. I have seen plenty of willful ignorance in my life, but this has to take the cake. SAT-bright students, voting for ignorance of Homer, Plato, the Old Testament, Paul, Beowulf, Augustine, Aquinas, Lorenzo de Medici, Michelangelo, Rousseau, Shakespeare, Newton, Adam Smith, Martin Luther, Locke. Wow. They won't know bupkus and thus will not be worth a serious conversation.
And since all of modern physics, chemistry, medicine, and engineering are aspects and products of Western Civ too, perhaps they might consider eliminating those oppressive white male patriarchal things.
Ignorant kids, standing on the shoulders of giants while denying it. Fascinating phenomenon, the hubris of ignorance.
If I were there with a microphone and videotape, it would be fun to ask them what civilization they might prefer to know - or live in.
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Science, mathematics, law, philosophy,medicine, engineering, art, literature, music--otherwise known as white male studies.
The 6 are no-hires...the 1 is a maybe. I don't recall having much choice in classes in my day..1966-70. Plenty of required classes and the "recommended" list of electives did not stray far from the major. And yes I took Western Civilization and I don't think it damaged me too much...of course I'm a white male so there is no hope.
And this is Stanford. There is literally no hope for this civilization as it now stands. One hopes that there are a few St. Benedict out there preserving things--they will be needed when this all collapses.
What is more disturbing than the shallowness of the students is the total irresponsibility of the faculty here. They are bigger barbarians than the students. (And I would wager that the faculty at this point knows not much more about Western Civilization than do their students.)
They know Marx, Engels, and Mao, though Mao is somewhat Eastern. What more need they, besides Mein Kampf?
"There is literally no hope for this civilization as it now stands."
Nonsense. Stanford was a good school, now it is declining. There is a foolish idea in the land that once something is built or has been a place of quality that it must remain. But cities rise and fall, and universities as well.
Keep in mind, in the 17th century, Oxford and Cambridge were overrun with religious doctrinaires and excluded those of dissenting religions. As such, those universities missed the greatest advancement of mankind, the invention of the steam engine. They recovered, but in the 17th century Oxbridge was not universities for civilization.
In The Evolution of Man and Society, the geneticist CD Darlington pointed out that the scientific and engineering advances in Britain in the 17th-19th centuries came almost exclusively from Dissenters- Protestants not members of the Anglican Church. The only way Dissenters could get into Oxford or Cambridge was by dissimulating their religious views- such as Isaac Newton.
"Newcomen's religion had consequences greater than absence from a local census. Dissenters, including Baptists, Presbyterians, and others, were as a class, excluded from universities after 1660, and either apprenticed, or learned their science from dissenting academies."
"At the same time that he chartered the world's first scientific society, Charles II had created an entire generation of dissenting intellectuals uncontrolled by his kingdom's ever more technophobic universities."
p29, Rosen, Willam, 'The Most Powerful Idea in the World'
Young people (and today this could be as old as people in their 40's) have never had a challenge in life. Our society, the Western society is easy and provides everything we need, everything we want and more. Work and day to day challenges used to fill the waking hours of life and today it is leisure time that we can fill anyway we want to. Watch TV, play video games, demonstrate against something, whatever is the latest thing. A malaise has settled in, it's been building for years and a kind of decadence has taken over the youth. They lack direction and our country lacks leaders. Our president exemplifies this condition and the MSM glorifies it. Our youth are lost and leaderless and follow anything, any belief system that strokes their ego and makes them feel superior to their parents and all those old white men who made this country great. This IS all our fault. We could have done a better job of providing them direction.
As a longtime employer in the Stanford area let me tell you that Stanford grads are no big deal. They are the dumbest "smart" people I've ever encountered. They are arrogant, entitled and generally clueless. They usually have no real work (or real-life!) experience and are often detrimental to the organization. It's all theoretical knowledge, at best, with them. My resume triage process puts the Stanford grad at the bottom of the pile.
Just about any UC or Cal State grad can hit the ground running and outperform the perpetually befuddled Stanford grad.
ah yes, they are such enlightened little snowflakes, such critical thinkers who can base all knowing off of their little feelz. Who needs logic, reason or a base of knowledge gathered through observation and experimentation? (besides you and me?)
and I'm supposed to care about what 20 year olds want because why????
you guys need a sense of proportion.
No, you're not, and neither are we. Still, it's good to know what to avoid, and why.
no, send the kid to stanford if he or she can get in. a stanford undergrad degree is a ticket to a professional school / professional license that's worth, typically, a boatload of income downstream.
in the real world of new hires, no one cares if a grad can conjugate aristotle.
Because every year they'll be a year older but they'll never be any wiser. A good education is a foundation for a lifetime of learning and these people will never be fit to be trusted in a job that requires anything more than asking if you'd like fries with that. But twenty, thirty, forty years down the road and that's all we're going to have - people you wouldn't trust to leave alone with a sharp pair of scissors are going to be running everything. Imagine a world of Bernie Sanderses, if you can. Incapable of grasping the idea that wisdom lies in understanding just how woefully ignorant you are and no man is so ignorant as one who believes he knows everything.
to the aptly named jerryskid:
if you think kollege actually teaches anything worth knowing, then yes, I will have fries with my order.
you don't get a good foundation of anything, much less an education, from four years of bullshit in any college. that's any college, not just stanford. no possible way you have any college experience if you're that obsessed with the concept of a degree. you want a degree? you can have one of mine, I've got several I don't need or use.
holy shit, get a grip.
no one here should give a rat's ass about what spoiled kollege kids want, except other spoiled kids.
.... unless... let me guess, you have a son or daughter you've mortaged the house to pay for kollege tuition and who's got a crushing load of student loan debt that you are ultimately responsible for because you've bought in to all this crapola.
Yes, you can get a good foundation in college and/or graduate school in a number of things.
1. Accounting - both cost and financial
2. Finance - DCF, stock valuation, option valuation
5. Probability, statistics, game theory and decision science
I've been working a long time now, but my basic foundation in each of the above categories (excluding law) really dates back to my college years. (Law school taught me more about law than college ever did, of course. My understanding of finance improved tremendously in grad school as well in connection with my MBA.) For many people, computer programming would be added to the list above but the honest reality is I already had a pretty good grasp on that prior to arriving at college.
Ahhh! Just imagine: the parents of these special snowflakes are The Barrister's and Bird Dog's peers!
Nobody I know would even consider sending their children to such an effete, elitist school.
I get 2300 voters out of about 16,000 students. Were the other 85% too busy studying to bother?
“The children now love luxury. They have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise.”
"Our sires’ age was worse than our grandsires’. We, their sons, are more worthless than they; so in our turn we shall give the world a progeny yet more corrupt.”
–Horace, circa 20 BC
besides, kids are lazy. you spend a lifetime learning about western civilisation. anyone could learn all there is worth knowing about your basic third world culture in a week, two weeks tops if you attend class drunk.
RE: The 'Madness' Grows Unabated
Those whom the gods would destroy, they first make 'mad'.
From shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations. I wouldn't put much emphasis on what these students think.
What have the Romans ever done for us?
The Barrister: Stanford Students Reject Western Civilization By A 6-To-1 Margin
Stanford hasn't required Western Civilization since the 1980s. It's has always been available as an elective.
So the students get to decide what is required for a degree?
Inmates running the asylum indeed.
Henry VIII knew what to do with institutions like the modern American University. We should follow his example.
We should abolish the college's tax exemptions, tax their endowments, require them to admit students by lottery, abolish tenure, abolish accreditation, abolish federal student loans and grants, fire at least 80% of the administrators and cut the salaries of the survivors dramatically. Burn the buildings down, plow them under, and sow the land with salt.
Sidebar: OTOH, The real problem with asking for Western Civilization, or any other course in the humanities, to be taught these days is that no one, save some very old farts, is capable of teaching them. The faculty are experts in pop culture, political correctness, and post colonial queer theory. They are so ignorant of culture and civilization that they have no idea of how ignorant they are.
I know this might sound wacky, but I notice this lack of a classical education in song lyrics. It's been over 30 years since the Police song "Don't Stand So Close To Me" came out. In it, Sting references Nabokov and his novel "Lolita". I got the reference when I was a 13 year old hearing it in 1983. What 13 year old could now? Who even reads Nabokov anymore? Maybe that's more indicative of the strength of the British education system than a lack of knowledge of Western Civ.
Why don't we take the old adage about a Harvard Man and substitute Stanford. It likes to think of itself in the same vein; I almost laughed when a Stanford alum explained that the school's nickname is the Cardinal, singular, as in the color. I can only guess that it's their attempt to compete with Harvard's use of Crimson.