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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Saturday, March 31. 2012
The huge investment by students, parents and taxpayers made in colleges to provide a foundation of knowledge and critical thought has already or is in process of sinking into the hole of politicized instruction that is one-sided indoctrination. The California Association of Scholars details this in a just published 87-page report, A Crisis Of Competence:The Corrupting Effect of Political Activism in the University of California.
The specifics describe the University of California but, also, uses broader principles and statistics that apply nationally. The report to the Regents of the University of California cites its own policies that are being ignored by passive or activist administrators, allowing or furthering a lack of academic standards, yes also of academic freedom, that is digging a deeper hole under our society and prosperity.
The Regents are held responsible for not enforcing its own rules, contributing to the sinking of the university system they are appointed to direct and protect.
There are 26 members of the Regents, 18 appointed by the Governor, most political donors to the Governor, plus 8 others who are either beholden elected officials or self-interested in the status quo. Yes, fish stink from the head in this heavily liberal Democrat state. Even liberal mayors and governors across the country are now forced by huge deficits to finally confront teacher unions to limit unaffordable benefits and runaway work rules. So too must the U of C Regents and governing boards of other universities elsewhere soon face up to the sinkhole they’ve allowed on campuses and fill it in with sound instruction instead of indoctrination.
If they don't, better and less costly alternatives are rapidly emerging, routing students and investment around the sinkhole, to end the reign of the benign neglect of and sabotage of higher education by the current higher education establishments. Free competition will, as usual, cleanse and replace the incompetent, the willfully incompetent even faster.
The entire report, linked above, is a must read for anyone looking for the best current research into this deepening higher education sinkhole. A brief summary is available in this column at the Wall Street Journal, How California's Colleges Indoctrinate Students: A new report on the UC system documents the plague of politicized classrooms. The problem is national in scope.
P.S.: Debra Saunders also reviews the report at the San Francisco Chronicle .
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Red Flag No. 1
The term antisemitism does not appear once in the entire document.
Red Flag. No. 2
The report was prepared by the Regents of the University of California.
far too many college graduates have not learned to write effectively, they can not read and comprehend any reasonably complex book, they have not learned to reason, and their basic knowledge of the history and institutions of the society in which they live is lamentably poor….
So the goals of the postmodern education and studies programs have been reached. Where do we go now?
It's hard to go back after coming this far down the road
Red Flag No. 1: The report does deal with antisemitism.
Red Flag No. 2: The report is TO the Regents.
Red Flag No. 3: Seems you read the post or judged too quickly, and didn't read the links.
This is a highly prestigious, powerful, and correct report.
Better and less costly alternatives are the way to go. I don't see how universities can compete, shackled as they are with tenured faculty, large facilities, and thousands of hangers on. That isn't to say that there isn't a place for good research universities, but most students aren't going to be researchers and need more general skills.
Some fifteen years ago, there was a report on 20/20, I think, about the scandal of the waste of money in California schools and universities. Administrators and deans were getting outrageous salaries while classrooms were overcrowded and there was a lack of basic supplies. Nary a word about the corrupting influences of politicizing education.
The rot and decay are complete. The only reason we know about it is because dead bodies have a malodorous whiff about them.
...and from the other world, the world that used to quickly apply what great universities would teach, comes a guy named Joe Doakes, writing in the comments at
Dear President Obama,
My old man owned a factory in the South Bronx. At one point he employed 100’s of men. These men came from every race, color, and creed. All were tough and my father was tougher. If you lived and worked in the south bronx in the 60’s into the 70’s you had to be tough. When my father was teaching me to shoot he he gave me the basics; “if you feel the need to pull it, you had better be prepared to use it . . .” Along with all of the rest. I asked he if he carried one. His response. “Too small for crowd control . . . flare gun . . .” Long before those moments I was pretty fouled up.
School was one big disaster after the divorce. Regardless, my old man, not one to mince words or acts, picks me up from school and takes me to Friendly’s to try to sort this out a bit; back in the day they would put a smear of butter on the bun and that was a good burger. Anyway, we are all finished up and we get set to go, get in this convertible, and he gets all set. My Oldman is Elvis. In fact when people say he’s dead, I say no, it’s my Dad he just in hiding. We start home. A custom “8 track” is blasting Charles Aznavour, “Yesterday When I Was Young,” and we are heading home. Some guy decides to cut us off because my Oldman will not make a left fast enough for them; so they cut around our outside and take the left in front of my old man. Elvis is now on the hunt. My Oldman cuts the guy off. Shoves his car onto a sidewalk, instructs me to “look that way!” Pulls the guy out of his car, and then some lady comes out of the house, and my father instructs her to call the police. Long story short the police take the guy away that cut us off. After the quiet dinner and then the citizens arrest my old man gets back in the car, did not even break a sweat, and looks at me and says, “Help me, help you, because one day I’ll be dead.”
Who do you think you are kidding Mr. Obama? You think we are mad for trying to return to a time of economic sanity and rapid growth when people had work and this nation made things in something called factories. Yet, you sit their and say no to everything that would create the very conditions that would make that happen; and you have the gall to call us mad? The world is nuts. I’ve got the scars to prove it, so does my father, and his father before him. Both inside and out. But just because you are scared, hurt or wounded, does not give us license to do the wrong thing or shirk our responsibilities to our fellow citizens or our families. We are trying to free our economy from the burden of government and get it growing again, you can’t do that by telling people that they have to do it your way. When this nation is full of people trying to live as Frank Sinatra once sang so eloquently “My Way.”
I didn’t have “dreams of my commie father.” I had a father who might have done it “His Way,” but he always did the right thing even if he was scared, and he never, ever, blamed anyone for anything. He looked at his hand and played the best cards he could and made a difference in a lot of lives.
One must ask after three friggen years what have you done? One year . . . I’ll give you that, two . . . it’s a push hold your breath we might make it . . . three . . . you’ve got to be flipping kidding me . . .
Bird Dog, I think people will read it. Unlike back in the mid-60's, where Patrick Moynihan's report on the affects of welfare on the Negro family was squashed by his fellow liberals and the Pravda media, today we have an Internet, and alternative bloggers like you who offer it up for consumption.
It sure would increase the possibility of greater exposure, though, if conservative talk radio or folks like Hannity or even O'Reilly would give a 3 minute plug. I can just hear Rush or Mark Levin taking this to town. That brings a smile to my lips!
Or - long as I'm sharing my druthers, how about Palin in her upcoming guest hosting of the morning "TODAY" show this next Tuesday - imagine if she brings this up for a quick strike so that the millions who will be watching her can have the "I'm paying 50K a year so my kids can be indoctrinated???" seed planted in their minds. And you know that Palin is going to bring in millions of onlookers, if only because the left has attacked and vilified her so much and they'll want to see for themselves what she's really like.
That would give us a good cross-pollinization with internet, radio and TV... then let the chatter begin!
We shall show that this is an inevitable consequence of any substantial influence of radical politics in academia, because its characteristic interests and modes of thought are the very antithesis of those that should prevail in academic life.
So, what happened to those values that should prevail in academic life? They are still there, and the proof is in the marketplace success of 'the Revolution' --think, the career of Bill Ayers is unique only in that youthful brief unshining nonbourgeois 'weatherman' bomb-blast celebrity moment that guaranteed his subsequent half-century-long bourgeois-ideal life and career of 'reaction against the bourgeois ideal' theater.
Providentially, there IS a radical revolution around --it's called "The Constitution of the United States of America" --and it's a deadly threat to the royalist reaction that has been teaching "how to seem like a peasant" at the university --a ruse now being outed by a typhoon of science and tech commerce from elsewhere.
Thanks for pointing out this publication. It will be interesting to read. The comment about higher education being a sinkhole is certainly correct. Our university knows no ends to moaning and groaning about "decreasing state support" which is true only if you take inflation adjusted dollars and hold your tongue just right. Increasing student tuition and fees at 2 - 3 times inflation will decrease state support as a percentage of the total as well. Yet total budgets have NEVER decreased from one year to the next.
reading your letter to obama brought tears to my eyes. i am a 73 year old swiss and i worked in management positions all over the world. obama was a so called law-professor at the harvard university. how the hell he got there is a big??????? he was a teeny weeny comunity-organiser and now he is the worst disaster of a so called president of the greatest country of the word (besides switzerland). i just wonder how the hell SHIT LIKE THIS CAN HAPPEN IN THE GOOD OLD U. S. A. ?????
A very good question. The easy answer is "Ross Perot" --whose third-party run in 1992 took 20% of the vote, including around 15% of the GOP's. This put Bill Clinton into office with 43% of the vote. Clinton then began breaking down the integrity of the system, and it hasn't stopped falling apart yet. How did he do it? Long/short, just search a few terms: cloward-piven, scofflaw, situational ethics, permanent war room. That'll start to inform you of the answer to your question.