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.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Monday, August 22. 2011
Maybe most of the world is on vacation now, or taking breaks from their information-gathering and opinion-surfing. Still, I expected more interest in my racism post yesterday. Perhaps it is all old hat to our readers. I thought I did an OK job of pointing out that multiculturalism, when extended to acceptance and "tolerance" of self-destructive cultures or subcultures, is not a particularly noble or constructive mission (despite its obvious political motives).
Star Parker has a piece on the topic today:
Anyway, I am back to my education beat today.
One of my repeated claims here has been that those who deserve advanced education are those who pursue it on their own. After high school, nobody should want or need to be force-fed most (I'll make an exception for Physical Chemistry and Calculus) of what they need or desire to know, so the only test of their desire is whether they pursue it on their own (rather than the simple credential-buying).
All learning is self-education, and "going to college" does not make anybody "educated." Furthermore, true students study throughout their entire lives. There is no finish line, and you do not have to be in academia to do that.
Dinocrat reminded me of iTunes U.
Of course, at Maggie's we are Teaching Company addicts. What's on TV? Joy of Mathematics
Posted by The Barrister in Education, Our Essays at 14:01 | Comments (12) | Trackbacks (0)
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now that you are looking for comments about edu, I'll go back to the racism thing...a reason I did not want to engage was a bit of a put-off from the opening quote/source - hard to respond seriously when the lead protoganist of the criticism is Garofolo...a "personality".
now, back to your regularly scheduled programming.
Barrie - You did, as usual, an excellent job of portraying the issue, but speaking for myself, I find the whole issue of racism kind of 'sordid' these days, in the sense that we finally elected a black guy to the top post and figured Al Sharpton and crew were behind us, only to have racism be more in the spotlight than ever -- up to and including the aforementioned Rev. Sharpton now glorifying the airwaves. Maybe a better word would be 'ridiculous'. If electing Obama didn't do any good, then all we're doing is having the same old tired conversation we've been having for 40 years. Like abortion and capital punishment, what more can be said at this point?
When it comes to playing "Gotcha!", as in "Look, I found a case of racism!!", well, (1) who gives a fuck?, and (2) this isn't, and has never been, that kind of site. I'm sure the old-hand Farmers still remember the tragic day when Bird Dog made his first -- and last -- foray into the world of gotcha journalism. It was some video of Michelle Obama referring to her native African land as "home", which, in context, is perfectly acceptable, like me calling Ireland my 'home' because I'm 3/4ths Irish. I and others promptly handed him his ass in the comments and that ended that little experiment.
On top of all that, you're right -- it's the dog days of August and the readership is probably way down. We're in that great time of the year down here in the Keys when it's a sparkling 87 out -- but "feels like 104" with the humidity. Gack.
My suggestion? I think you should place a ratio on your posts, like "one lightweight article for every two serious articles." I think you've forgotten how much fun stuff you used to post, but ever since the 2008 election it's been serious, serious, serious. Ditto BD, albeit to a lesser degree.
My opinion? If you want to be a powerhouse blogger known for his savvy and insight, then keep doing what you're doing and maybe concentrate on getting links to your better posts spread around, like sending them to Glenn Reynolds, AVI, Driscoll, Surber, Sipps, and the rest of the Maggie's Valued Friends™. Invite them to expound on a side issue of the post that you deemed slightly outside its bounds, but deserves attention nonetheless.
If, however, you want to help Maggie's as a site, then help pull it back to the eclectic, centrist, almost non-political site that it once was.
What do you think made it popular in the first place?
I proposed a moderate political party platform and would like to have your input on my education section (and any other you wish to comment on). Here's the link: http://atcs.newsvine.com/_news/2011/07/13/7042740-could-you-support-this-politcal-party-platform-poll
Since 95% of blacks voted for Obama, racism is alive and well in America.
The implication: Vote for candidates of one's own race.
Is that the America we want?
I guess I don't think of the education posts as political since I am very interested in the issue. I do really enjoy reading, and commenting on, your education posts. But I think you and I agree on most of the issue.
To Doc's point: I don't consider them light either, and that is what first kept bringing me back here. I also don't want to comment on all the education posts because while I do hope to drive a little traffic to my site, I also don't want to sound like a broken record.
What I would really like is a lesson on how to modify the drawing of the girls in the back of the trailer so I can put my own logo on it! Doc?
re "If, however, you want to help Maggie's as a site, then help pull it back to the eclectic, centrist, almost non-political site that it once was."
Heh. And this from the guy with the 'election 2012" posts.
Keep posting what interests you Barrister (and other Maggie's contributors), not what you think others would like you to post.
As brilliant as Doc is (and that is a compliment Doc), he does not know what other readers might like.
Blogs do change and evolve. I believe it would be hard to keep one forever the same.
Because we treated blacks like second-class citizens from the start, to make up for it, we over-compensated. If I were black, I would be offended by affirmative action because that would make me feel as though I couldn't succeed on my own. Since O became President, it seems there is more racial tension rather than less. He and the parasites that thrive on it, have contributed to that immensely. They could have done so much good. I'm sure MLK is spinning in his grave. Sad.
I thought it was a good post, probably because it mirrored my views so closely (which can sometimes be my actual definition of a "good post").
It nicely summarized one viewpoint. Garafolo summarizes the other viewpoint.
But the lack of comment might be attributable to your post being self-contained and complete and finished, and all that one could add through comment was going to be either "yeah, I agree completely!", or "die, you racist Rethuglican hatemonger!".
I didn't understand the P-chem comment. But I am happy to be able to do the Henry's Law calculation that the analytical chemists are afraid of.
Calculus should be a requirement for everyone except perhaps fine arts majors (but you better be a really good piano player or visual artist. None of this cacophonic, "experimental" contemporary noise, or Pollack dripping.)
I heard an interesting talk some years ago by a machine tool manufacturer who was talking about improving production and costs for machining ceramics. Because of understanding calculus I could just look at the graphs of their work and see where the break even points were for productivity and cost. Calculus is useful for many things.
I am not a school teacher so I can say this: For womens rights and gay rights "the point was not just equal treatment under the law, but special treatment under the law." as well. Every special interest group wants the golden ring "a protected class" which means no matter what happens to you the justice department will sue for your rights and you can win large settlements even when you are in the wrong.
I am reaching the age where my oldest son is starting to think about college, and I find myself torn on what kind of advice or direction to give him. I feel a bit hypocritical, because I can't claim that I didn't make full use of America's higher education system ... three engineering degrees, two law degrees, from schools like MIT and Boston University. But when I first went to MIT, the tuition was about $2k a term.
I see our economy cratering, and wonder whether a trade might be a better investment than a degree. The ROI of college has deteriorated badly. The long term costs of using student loans merely hides and delays this realization. Nowadays, SDS stands for Student Debt Sucks.
I see our society disintegrating and I think ROTC and some training and experience as active duty military might be a much better investment of his time.
The social atmosphere on many campuses has turned politically correct to the extent of being toxic. Freedom has been sacrificed on the alter of social utility and calm. They might as well pump Prozac, Valium, and Xanax into the water fountains.
A good part of most of an MIT undergrad education is available free online - http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm
So much higher education can be self-taught these days, but that may be just my distorted view having learned how to learn over the course of my own career.