mead berger shevtsova garfinkle michta grygiel blankenhorn bayles
Higher Education Watch
GOP Goes After Tenure
Features Icon
Features
show comments
  • rheddles

    How about government just gets out of the higher ed business as fast as it can.

    • f1b0nacc1

      This is precisely the right point to make. If a private school wishes to provide tenure, let it….but not with public monies. As for public institutions, they shouldn’t be supporting lifetime employment for anyone, and that includes professors. And to make the broader point, the government should get out of the higher ed business entirely…no public colleges, no subsidies, no loans, NOTHING….

      • FriendlyGoat

        Fascinating insight from a political science PhD.

        • f1b0nacc1

          Who paid for his education out of his own pocket, who worked for a PRIVATE university, and who left the field of his own volition because of what it was turning into almost 30 years ago…

          Really, you can do better than that….

          • FriendlyGoat

            Just sayin’. There is something weird about highly-educated older people going hard against the idea of society helping young people attain high educations.

          • f1b0nacc1

            I don’t at all oppose education…I value mine. What I do NOT support is providing an endless number of worthless certificates (at public expense) that represent nothing more than a ‘paid in full’ certification.

            I make no secret that I believe far too many (by a factor of at least 20, likely more) students attend universities. This creates worthless degrees, waters down the quality of what should be taught, and ultimately creates precisely the sort of environment that leads to the shameful abuse of adjuncts (which I have decried in the past, as you know). There is a difference between education and certification, and I don’t believe that we should be funding the latter just to keep tenured twits off the streets.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I wasn’t suggesting you don’t value your education. I was suggesting that you really don’t value the idea of other people having any. For a PhD. in any subject to be saying that only one-twentieth of the students attending universities should be there is beyond bizarre. It indicates to me that one can take a piece of clay (you), then mold it into a person capable of earning a high-level degree, then expose it to modern conservative political spin, and Poof!——return it to a piece of clay.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Really? And PRECISELY why is it bizarre? Not everyone is suited to be a Supermodel, an NFL tight end, a brilliant mechanic, or a PhD in Political Science. Forcing everyone to attend college (and with our current demand that most jobs require a college degree as a basic requirement, we do precisely that) is foolish and wasteful in the extreme, and ignores that people are different and have different aptitudes. You mark yourself as an even bigger fool by suggesting that any human being is simply ‘clay’ to be molded….but then I suppose that I shouldn’t be terribly surprised.

            My most valuable education didn’t come from the universities I attended, it came from reading and exploring on my own. I encourage EVERYONE to pursue that sort of education…not simply the certificate collecting and ticket-punching that passes for modern education. Credentials are for fools who argue from authority….

          • ——————————

            The best comment I have ever seen anywhere on this education subject!
            And the last paragraph was the best and most important part of your comment.

            Heck, if commentary like that can come from a PHD, then I might even learn to like a college degreed person someday…he, he, he….

          • FriendlyGoat

            Don’t bother. By choice he is not working in his field of initial training.

          • f1b0nacc1

            That is kind of you to say, but really, it is only common sense.

            I don’t regret taking my doctorate (if nothing else, it taught me how the sausage gets made, if you get my drift), but the idea that it is some sort of special qualifier (rather than simply a pursuit of what has become a hobby for me) is nonsense.

          • FriendlyGoat

            When employers stop asking for credentials or putting applicants who do not have them in the “no callback” stack, young people will slow down their college aspirations. That has not happened. I seriously don’t know what would possibly cause it to happen. Yes, a few welders and maybe some oilfield workers here and there. Next door to you in Johnson County, do you think there are a ton of non-college jobs that buy people the houses they live in there?

            Even Starbucks recently had an ad touting that they had helped 6,500 baristas go to college. Why do they bother?

          • f1b0nacc1

            When those employers are sued for ignoring individuals on the basis of educational background (the OTHER part of my proposal, which you always seem to ignore), they will rather quickly stop, particularly because they have no real desire to do it in the first place. Duke v Griggs prevents employers from using real tests of suitability, so they use college degrees as a proxy. As long as they have no other method for ‘filtering’ they will use what they can…

            As for Johnson County, I actually do know of plenty of young people who are finding jobs without a college degree….in IT and computers. Fortunately enough, the plague of HR hasn’t completely destroyed most small firms (the real drivers of employment, particularly in IT), and they care far more about what you can actually do, rather than what classes you slept through. The HQ of my company is in Johnson County, as a matter of fact, and they do quite nicely hiring people without the credentials you seem to think are essential. Keep in mind that *I* have never taken a computer course, yet I work in the field and do quite nicely for myself…

            As for Starbucks, what they do with their own money is their business….the company is run by individuals with a political view I don’t share and this often colors their choices. Were I a stockholder, I would be unhappy that they are wasting their money paying barristas to sleep through Grievance Studies classes, but as I said, it is their money, and their choice.

          • ——————————

            “When those employers are sued for ignoring individuals on the basis of educational background (the OTHER part of my proposal, which you always seem to ignore), they will rather quickly stop, particularly because they have no real desire to do it in the first place. Duke v Griggs prevents employers from using real tests of suitability, so they use college degrees as a proxy. As long as they have no other method for ‘filtering’ they will use what they can…”

            Imagine the reaction of the left if the right started a movement to get education into the labor discrimination laws.
            It’s a great idea, and it has plenty of merit.

            Memorizing a bunch of info in order to pass a series of tests has nothing to do with job performance. If nothing else, it is discriminatory against the poor, not only for economic reasons, but because the culture in poor areas turns children against education from the start….

          • f1b0nacc1

            This ties in with the overuse of professional licensing to protect incumbents and prevent new entries into the marketplace. Sadly, the GOP is as clueless on this as the Dems, but if they wised up, they would have a powerful weapon at their disposal. Lots of low-income individuals (especially minorities) are locked out of the workplace because they don’t have the right pieces of paper to provide them with permission. What would happen if the right went to those people and pointed out that they (the right) were supporting their right to work at jobs of their choosing, and to use their own skills to start new businesses? There is no lack of entreprenurial spirit out there…

          • ——————————

            You are right about all politicians on this. Of course they are all degreed so why would they have a clue (education is of their ilk), or act on it even if they had a clue. Besides, they live a cloistered life.

            Would love to see your proposal get done. But getting your proposal into law is a monumental task because;
            1.) It has taken several generations to get where we are now regarding the ‘perceived’ importance of college. So starting, and maintaining, a popular uprising against the cultural brainwashing of academia for a long enough time to get a law passed would take many years at best.
            2.) While many would support it, there are many who would not, for various reasons (the educated, the educational institutions, businesses, etc.)…a huge force to push against.

            As a side note…Hollywood is one of the other insidious institutions where the left has changed our culture for the worse right under our noses. I would like to see those with the money and power start a Rightwing version to compete against the present version. I thought Mel Gibson had a chance with The Passion Of The Christ, but unfortunately he couldn’t keep his own life in order….

          • f1b0nacc1

            I am not as pessimistic as you are about the prospects….

            1) Duke v Griggs is only 46 years old as a ruling, and that is what did most of the damage. Before that, college was for about 10% of the population, still too high, but certainly an adequate place to begin undoing the real damage. The GI bill pushed a lot of people into college who ordinarily wouldn’t have been there, but they were there with a clear goal, something that changed after Duke. I don’t dispute that our society has absorbed a lot of bad messages, but never underestimate the power of example to change that.

            2) Yes, there will be tons of resistance from entrenched elites with major axes to grind. Of course there are a lot MORE people who stand to benefit from it, and I suspect that they would be amenable to being convinced.

            Your point about Hollywood is well taken (Breibarts famous quote that “Politics is downstream from culture” is very well taken), but rather than a rightwing version to challenge the existing one, how about an apolitical version to challenge both?

          • ——————————

            I agree that it can be done, no doubt…and I definitely agree it should be. I would support it 100%. Whether it takes a long time of a generation or more, or a much shorter time, someone needs to get a grass roots effort to start the process. There are certainly more of those who would benefit, as a percentage of the population, than not, so the numbers would be on the side of those trying to get the law passed.
            The tactics the left has used to get their agendas through for the last several generations needs to be used to get it done. The supporters of the law could call those who don’t support it, ‘uneduphobics’! And tell them they hate the uneducated! And that the uneducated should have all the same opportunities as the educated!

            As far as the Hollywood issue, I am extremely traditional and hard Right, so apolitical wouldn’t work for me and many like me. Besides, the liberal left version is already in place…it needs to be reversed…by any means possible….

          • LarryD

            >> how about an apolitical version …

            Conquest’s Second Law “Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.”
            The Civil Service was supposed to be apolitical.

          • f1b0nacc1

            An excellent quote….and one that I should have paid more attention to.

            I have my own thoughts about the civil service, but that is a subject for another threadjack (grin)….

          • Jim__L

            For a wide variety of technical jobs, Google lists “equivalent experience” in lieu of an academic degree.

          • Jim__L

            FG seems to project an awful lot. He believes in every last lunacy the Democrats come up with; therefore everyone believes in every absurdity that the media presents as their political point of view. FG’s mind was malleable enough to believe the Democrats; therefore everyone’s mind is infinitely malleable.

            Nah, the Left is just in a panic — as they should be! — that if they can’t keep in control of the universities, the mindworm that is their entire point of view will not be able to reproduce. Abortion-happy feminists, anti-child environmental wackos, and homosexuals make for a remarkably sterile culture.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Most of the Left have fallen victim to a very serious case of entitlement crossed with conspiracy theory. Indeed they are in a panic, because they believe that everyone is like them, and they know what they would be doing if the circumstances were reversed….

          • Albert8184

            But… but… did you pay any attention to what he said?

          • FriendlyGoat

            Yes, I have been paying attention directly to f1b0nacc1 at least a couple of days per week for perhaps 2-3 years

          • Albert8184

            Today? In the past few hours?

          • FriendlyGoat

            Of course. This is just a continuation of debates we have already had.
            He believes that lots and lots of kids have bright futures in skipping college. Some do. Most don’t. That’s why 20 times more kids are in college than f1b believes should be there (his number). You do know that off-the-cuff assertion of opinion from him was nuts, right?

          • Albert8184

            There’s not a thing wrong with what he said. In fact… he’s absolutely right about what he’s saying.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Back to top of thread with f1b. Are you really telling actual young people in your real life that there should be “no public colleges, no subsidies, no loans, NOTHING”? Or are you just pontificating to oldsters like me in the comment sections?

          • Albert8184

            No. And neither was he.

          • LarryD

            Only the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) fields retain any value, the Humanities are just sinecure farms. Degrees have mostly become credentials, not evidence of valuable training or scholarship. Half the people going to collage would be better served studying a skilled trade, where there are shortages.

            The Humanities are going to have to be razed and rebuilt from scratch, and the rebuilding is best done by people motivated only by love of the subject matter, and best done on their own dime, else the parasites will just move in.

          • FriendlyGoat

            What do we need to take out of and/or put into the Humanities to make them more human or humane?

          • Psalms564

            About 95% of far-Left professors to start.

          • FriendlyGoat

            More seriously, please, if you’re going to mess with this. The question to LarryD is about the subject matter to be “fixed” in his view of razing and rebuilding.

          • Psalms564

            I’m serious. The problem is that Left has hijacked the humanities and made them worthless. It’s like what do you do with a mattress infested with bed bugs. You get rid of it. What do you do with departments infested with Leftwingers? You get rid of the Leftwingers. Everything else won’t solve the problem.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You’re NOT serious. The subject matter is the subject. A good Rightwinger, for instance, can tell you that Native American history is completely unimportant because 1) The natives were savages, 2) The natives didn’t need nearly the land they were spread across, 3) The natives didn’t embrace progress and were standing in the way of brighter and more-capable people, 4) The natives didn’t have a deed to the land or grant of the land from a monarch, 5) The natives didn’t win the land wars, 6) God’s Will was for the natives to be subdued, 7) Nothing else much to talk about without getting into Grievance Studies.

            We need to be talking, in the case of history—–as one example—-about what the facts are, not about the world view of the teachers. There is nothing about a dedicated Rightwinger which is going to improve any topic’s credibility. I just caricatured that to you above.
            The problem is that my spoof is very close to the real right wing view of Native Americans—-then and now.

          • Psalms564

            Since most of today’s humanities education can be summarized by “whitey is evil” any change will be welcome.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Told ya.

          • Anthony

            Just for nothing (something share many years ago taking off from the movie “The Usual Suspects”) and not needing a reply just a humorous paraphrase: “the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing Men that they are rated by a color.”

          • FriendlyGoat

            Catching up to you here with something from Atlantic. As we all are re-evaluating the whole idea of group psychology today, here is something insightful: https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2017/02/alternative-virtues-for-the-trump-era/516498/?utm_source=msn

          • Anthony

            Thank you and I appreciate linked article. Article underscores a sentiment you wrote to after Presidential election. That is, you averred that winners (some) on this site, despite denials to contrary, expressed too much glee (“…in listening to the partisans’ spirited enthusiasm. it is impossible to escape the realization that for many, it was because of such behavior.”) and consequently you inadvertently categorized a behavior, though writing about another idea. This from article (though the list identified has gems) sums it up for me: ” disconnect between morals and manners.” Again, thanks.

          • ——————————

            Saying the Rightwing view of the Indians is wrong, doesn’t make it wrong/bad, and it doesn’t make the Leftwing view right/good.
            What happened to the Indians is called Darwinism, and it had made humans what they are today through thousands of years of evolution….and right or left, it is a simple fact. It is only our recent technologies that have stopped that type of thing happening here again. Who needs some useless Humanities studies to figure that out….

          • FriendlyGoat

            Not you.

          • CosmotKat

            If you can’t make an argument without slandering and smearing those with whom you disagree and viscerally hate then your commentary is nothing but hate speech and no amount of constructive debate can occur between competing philosophies.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You know that Psalms564 is the old JR who made so many real hate comments at me that TAI deleted them, right?

          • CosmotKat

            I don’t worry about who each commenter is I am only interested in what they have to say.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Well, I am telling you this because your comments about me and hate are entirely misplaced with respect to this guy. I’m the victim of him, not the other way around.

          • CosmotKat

            I’m not referring to that guy.

          • Psalms564

            “Victim”

          • Psalms564

            You banning me turned out to be the best thing ever. I was able to show my kids a real world example why socialists are bad people. We talked about freedom of speech and why we still can’t say some things.
            I also got opportunity to read many wonderful Bible passages in choosing my handles. They all make fun of you, or rather ability of anyone to silence the word of God.
            not to mention I got to annoy the Left-wingers who blocked me. The best part what was when they realize this new handle is JR. They all think I changed it specifically for them. When I tell them the truth about how it comes about, they never believe me.
            All and all, good fun. I’m getting tired of this handle. I may call Obama your own Personal Lord and Savior soon and have it banned.
            I leave you with a saying from a book of Psalms. Psalm 56 Verse 4.
            http://biblehub.com/psalms/56-4.htm
            In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I still say it would be more instructive for your kids to just read Dad’s comment section.

          • Psalms564

            Listen, your douchiness and totalitarianism allowed me to bond some more with the kids and refresh my soul with verses from the Good Book. By seeking to be a piece of shlt who punishes me, you ended up rewarding me. Which was to be expected. I mean, you didn’t seriously believe that Isaiah 54:17 wouldn’t apply to you?
            No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.
            But like I said, I need a new handle so I will try to deliberately trigger you to get this ID banned. Never let it be said that I’m not completely honest in all my dealings with you.
            P.S. Love the way you, the person who tries to censor others, tried to portray himself as a victim. That was funny. We may get serious from time to time, but you never forget that one of the main roles of a pet fool is to amuse his master.

          • LarryD

            >> The subject matter is the subject.

            Yes. The subject of English Lit is English Literature, not the Marxian analysis. Read the Literature, and ignore the academics. If you think you have interesting observations or insights, share them with others who love the Literature.

          • LarryD

            Marxism. That’s what the Humanities have become. Start over with the source material, and throw Marxism onto the burn pile.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Only 95%?….you are a tolerant man indeed! (grin)

          • Psalms564

            I am indeed. Here’s the thing. There are some far-Left professors who are genuine scholars. I may think they are absolute cretins in things outside their areas of expertise, but that’s neither here nor there. I think universities should be purged of those who produce advocacy instead of scholarship. We are seeing this happening already in a free market where some colleges are going under. I believe there’s a YUUUUUGE gap between what skills are being “taught” currently in humanities and independent critical thinking that is key to employment. Let me put it to you this way, if I had a choice to hire somebody that just finished high school with good grades and a freshly minted Sociology major from pretty much any school, and I will hire the high school kid (void where prohibited).
            All of the above is my opinion BTW. I have no hard data to back any of this up. So apply grains of salt liberally,

          • f1b0nacc1

            As you know, I don’t do ANYTHING liberally (grin)…..

            I entirely agree that there are some (in fact many, though ‘many’ in this case means “more than 2”) left wing professors doing good scholarship. And they should be free to pursue their scholarship….just not on my nickel. If they can find a market that values their work, then I have no quibble with them.

          • Psalms564

            I’m willing to finance research in any field. RESEARCH. Even if it is by somebody I don’t like. When it becomes indoctrination and advocacy then I agree. Feel free to do it on your own dime.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Yes, but the problem is that university funding is sold as ‘higher education’, not ‘open-ended research by pretty much anyone with the right certificate’. Lets be blunt, if most people realized that the overwhelming majority (often over 70%) of the money going to universities was tied up in research (or direct support of it) rather than teaching, a ton of that money would disappear relatively quickly.

            I am something of an absolutist on this point. Universities should be for teaching, and if we wish to have research institutions (like you, I am fine with that) then lets organize them separately. We have too many teaching programs used as slush funds for researchers who have no interest at all in teaching.

            As a side point, dividing these up would make it harder fro the worst of the looney left to hide their idiocy,…

          • CosmotKat

            remove the Groupthink approach and return to diversity of thought and the inclusion of competing ideas.

          • FriendlyGoat

            We’re going to need to drill down to what “competing ideas” are before we take all of them as seriously as we take the ones which can be verified or at least seem much better explained by increasing bodies of evidence. Some people believed that people can be witches who are evil and should be killed for their witchcraft. Most don’t now. But we either do have witches and they should be killed or we do not have witches and people should not be killed on allegations of witchcraft. It’s one or the other. They are not equivalent “competing ideas” because some people might believe in witches.

          • CosmotKat

            You are talking shiite and saying nothing. You know exactly what I mean by competing ideas and your witch scenario is nothing more than deflection..

          • FriendlyGoat

            In the humanities, I really don’t know what you mean by competing ideas. Seriously, I don’t. Not all world views are equal just because people hold them. For instance, many people believe that God created man, then woman, according to the story in Genesis. Most people now consider that quite unlikely in the manner described in Genesis and in the timeframe supported by a timeline from Biblical genealogies. The Genesis story either is true as told or is not. Colleges are not really in a position to say “either one, take your pick, one is as good as the other because one is as likely as the other because the Bible says so” and should not be so obligated—-no matter that some insist otherwise.

          • CosmotKat

            You are not a serious thinker.
            Not everyone believes the Howard Zinn version of history or that climate change is real. Not everyone believes there is systemic and institutional racism. Not everyone believes the government should pick winners and losers in business, in educational opportunity, and in life. Many do not believe their voices should be silenced because they hold a different points of view. Many people do not believe they should be told they cannot express their vies for fear they will be marginalized of flunked by a radical and narrow minded professor.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Howard Zinn is either accurate or he is not. He said a lot of things.
            They are individually accurate or they individually are not. The whole People’s History is not subject to judgment of good or bad because Zinn is Zinn.

            Systemic racism can be measured by the number of people who will say that Obama was born in Kenya and/or is a Muslim, neither of which are factually supported. There is quite a bit of it actually.

            The definitions of the government “picking winners” might be a subject of debate if we drill down to exact situations and do not deal in generalities.

            I agree with you that students should have any amount of pushback they need against liberal hack professors in grading. But, again, this would come down to what is supportable and what is not.

          • Jim__L

            Straw men are all he knows…

          • Albert8184

            Oh God…. dig your hole deeper now.

          • CosmotKat

            Do you have proof this is the case or are you just making slanderous assertions to feed the hate you have for those who hold different opinions?

          • FriendlyGoat

            You can read the thread. f1b has said he has a doctorate in political science but now works in another field. His opinions about who should go to college or not are all over this discussions

          • CosmotKat

            I read them and yours and where in the thread did he assert a PHd in P. Sci? Please point out where fib suggested who should or should not go to college? I think you are being disingenuous once again.

          • FriendlyGoat

            f1b has told us in other threads that he has this degree. Ask him. He won’t dispute it. And there is nothing wrong with it. In light of that, though, I find his opinions on college quite odd.

            If you look carefully here you can find f1b opining that too many people are in universities by a factor of 20 or more——meaning that 95% of people in college should not be. Then there was his opener above that there should be “no public colleges, no subsidies, no loans, NOTHING” from the government for higher education. It’s just shtick for the comment section—–but why aren’t we treated to baloney like this?

          • CosmotKat

            That may be so, but in this thread there is no mention of a Doctorate in anything. There are many people in college today who are not capable or are under prepared due to poor public education from tenured teachers under performing in their vocation. Many are in college, never finish and then rack up student loan debt they cannot or do not pay. Now we have legislation that forgives student loans? That’s a slippery slope to be sure since a lot of us college graduates paid our loans, didn’t you? I sure did.

            I think there is a general belief that colleges (and public schools in general) are no longer performing the function for which tax payers subsidize them to do. The Democrats want to throw more money at the problem rather than admit their approach does not work and the Classical Liberals on the right want to reform education and seek a better and more cost effective way to educate our children, but Democrats oppose this, why? Could it be it stops the union gravy train and that impacts negatively the money unions pay democrats to protect their interests, not those of the student.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Well, sorry to mislead you that f1b mentioned his doctorate HERE.
            He didn’t, but he has told me before that he has one and I believe him.

            There is no question that some kids should not go far with college due to the cost and the unlikelihood of some ever graduating. Maybe 1/3 of them. But 95%? Can you imagine if President Trump tweeted
            “Too many in college. Send most of ’em home. Country can’t afford ’em. No jobs for ’em anyway.” ?????

            I mean, Trump will tweet nearly anything—–but not THAT. So why are we entertaining it here?

          • CosmotKat

            You keep confusing me for f1b. I have never said anything about 95% and if f1b did that’s his opinion. I do share some of his disappointment with how our education system has been diminished by progressive policy and ideology that seems able to turn out misguided militant radicals, but fewer and fewer accomplished students. The number of unprepared college students is growing and our competitive edge has been eclipsed by students in other countries who do math better and can read and write well in English which likely their second language, while we debate whether ebonics should be taught.

          • FriendlyGoat

            f1b did, not you. I have this feeling you were criticizing me as being some kind of hater for questioning it. We all want better educational outcomes, of course. It would be better if we had realistic discussions on how to get those. The constant polarization is not helpful.

          • CosmotKat

            You are part of that polarization, Goat. You use every article as a forum for bashing those with whom you disagree under the pretense of erudite commentary.. Your commentary is always a smear and then derogatory assertions intended to diminish the opposition. So, if you want honest dialogue then why you do write statements like this: “Thanks for making suggestions that red-state legislatures will mostly be ignoring.” Will they? Then follow up with this: “a nice thought from TAI and the last (last) idea going on in a Republican head anywhere.” Really, how can you be so sure? Perhaps they have solutions that work and you just don’t want to hear or it have it succeed.

            How about this nugget of disinformation:
            “As I have stressed before, it was up to voters from the evangelical church to insist on balanced truth for the big issues such as economic matters, civil rights, foreign affairs and the environment including climate.

            Instead, they allowed themselves to be completely seduced on wedding cakes and who will be going to what bathroom. You could find very, very few of them before the election who had either any understanding or much concern over what might replace PPACA.”

            Goat, that is so shallow and really demeaning when most people on the right are not fixated on the social issues that animate you, but common sense policies that progressives ignore. It’s the left who is politicizing the infrequent disputes on wedding cakes and bathrooms. To someone behind in his mortgage and looking for a job that will replace the income from his last job they do not care if a poor transgender is quivering over where to pee.

            The dialogue among intellectually honest Democrats is the realization your party and candidate offered no agenda and no vision beyond extending the status quo and the American people rejected that and the corruption that is the Democratic Party.. And for that rejection you insinuate they are ignorant and stupid and just don’t know what’s good for them. News flash, neither do you. The right is quite concerned with what replaces the failing disaster that is Obamacare. And they better get it right this time. What amazes me is with overwhelming facts of the failure of Obamacare Democrats would rather back a failure then step up and do the right thing for the American people. The problem is that would diminish their grip on power over the citizens and a loss of tax payer money they funnel through their wealth redistribution policies which is nothing more than take from the middle class and give to rich party donors and if there is anything left it goes to the poor you pretend to care about..

          • Andrew Allison

            A dubious proposition.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Likely so, but I would prefer to at least give him the opportunity to aspire to something better…

          • f1b0nacc1

            (My second reply)….I gave him time, and he proved you right….smile…

        • ——————————

          Yes, refreshing!
          A ‘genuine’ person knows when wrong is wrong…even if the wrong is of their own ilk….

        • Robert Burke

          Defund Prog Ed; replace with Western Enlightenment. Problems — almost all of them — solved.

      • Jim__L

        I disagree.

        I think that the Federal government should maintain a series of National universities — about ten or twelve of them, one in each major region of the country. (Pacific Northwest, Coastal California, Northern Rockies, Four Corners, Upper Plains, Lower Plains, Old Midwest, Dixie, Appalachia, Gulf Coast, Upstate Northeast). Each campus would recruit around ten percent of its student body from each of the other regions. National (and interstate / regional) priorities in research could be specifically pursued there, in cooperation with NASA, NIH, DoEnergy, DoD, and other government agencies.

        Medical schools would be established so that the number of doctors in the country could keep pace with population. This alone could make such a system worthwhile.

        Department of Education could run the system as a whole. And they could STAY THE H**L OUT of everywhere else.

        No funding, no dictates, no “dear colleague” letters, no nothing. All other universities would be run at the state level (or privately). All current federal money going to state colleges would be converted to a block grant, no strings attached, for each state to spend as it saw fit, with the understanding that the size of the block grant would be reduced by 10% (of the original total) per year, so as to sunset after a decade.

        There is value in the national government bringing people together across state lines and between regions. There is value in the national government having a university-oriented research arm to pursue national priorities. There is value in bringing together students from all regions of the country to give the outlooks of all those different regions a chance to intermingle.

        That said, there is so much danger in this sort of power, homogeneity, and potential misuse of public funds, that only a very small percentage of our country’s universities should be run this way.

        The Federal government has a part to play, just not a big one, and it should know how to stay in its place. Giving it its own place to stay in, and telling it to stay out of everywhere else, is more practical long-term than trying to limit DoEd the way we have (not really) been trying for the last few decades.

        • f1b0nacc1

          I understand where you are going with this, but why simply create another layer of bad bureaucracy? Private schools (which are free to issue grants and scholarships) could easily provide us with the number of higher education credentials we need, and without the costs and potential corruption inherent in government run schools. Medical training doesn’t necessitate a college degree, for instance (Europe provides us with an excellent example of this), and until the post WWI era, most if not many lawyers didn’t have college degrees as well. Engineering is an intellectually demanding field, but it doesn’t mandate higher education. We need to loosen professional licensing and stop trying to turn entrance into our economy into a series of pointless tests.

          You correctly point out the dangers in the government running schools, but assume that by simply telling them to ‘keep out’ that they will. If the last century of mission creep is useful for anything, it is as proof that government (any bureaucracy, really) will inevitably expand unless some sort of statutory boundaries exist to prevent them. Even with such boundaries, it is not clear that such things can be stopped.

          • Jim__L

            The point is not another layer of bureaucracy – the point is to wall off the Washington bureaucrats, probably even to establish a rivalry between National universities and State schools to reinforce a certain level of useful antagonism (kind of like between Navy and Marines.)

            I’m a little wary of pulling the plug on state schools completely; private tuition is still outrageously high, and I think you’d have trouble convincing me that the State would cut my taxes to make up the difference. And I’m not at all convinced that private schools are in any way immune to the lunacy we’re seeing on campus these days.

          • f1b0nacc1

            If states wish to maintain universities, let them do so. I object on principle, but federalism is a powerful tool for limited government, so I will concede that they have a right to make such mistakes.

            I absolutely believe that private schools are vulnerable to such lunacy (Yale’s latest silliness is a good example, though I concede as a Harvard man I am not at all surprised….grin), but as private entities, that is their privilege. Their tuitions are indeed outrageous, but once subsidies are removed, they will come down (the evidence on the effect of subsidies is that as they are increased, tuition and fees go up to compensate), so the overall impact will be small(ish). The real focus for me is that I want to get rid of 95% (or better) of the current college attendance, so this is a good thing. I am unconvinced of the need for mass higher education (please by all means, convince me that I am wrong!), so I see no need whatsoever for more than a handful of universities, preferably very expensive and selective ones.

          • Jim__L

            Have you considered the old wisdom that put the age of majority at 21? I suspect that the same realities that resulted in that consensus were the same realities pushing to keep kids in school past 18 today.

            Having people in some form of job training until then is probably for the best. (Apprenticeships from 14-21 were a good system; observing my own kids, they’re with-it enough to follow through on useful tasks by 14.) Internships are starting to be thought of as more valuable than classwork, in terms of getting employment.

            That said, I agree with you somewhat that higher education as it stands isn’t giving anyone the bang for the buck that we need. But what do we do with high school graduates that are bright but unsuited to the skilled trades, from age 18 to 21?

          • f1b0nacc1

            Bright people who aren’t suited for trades are indeed suited for a great many things that don’t require a college degree. There is some evidence, for instance, that late teens make the excellent programmers, and that certainly doesn’t require a degree. One could make the case that a good time to begin developing an entreprenurial spirit is that same period, and this same thought makes sense for any number of other professions.

            We overuse degrees, and thus lock people out of fields that they might otherwise be well suited to pursue. The idea that a college is a good way to ‘stash’ bright people who don’t fit into the trades says more about what is wrong with our view of college than anything else…

          • Jim__L

            So do you think it would be good for high schools to start pursuing internship agreements with major companies?

          • f1b0nacc1

            Why not? You know that this was not entirely unknown in the past. Given the much larger reach of major (and minor) corps than in the past, perhaps this can be handled through clearinghouses, but the broader principle still stands.

          • Jim__L

            Hm, this sounds like a Startup idea. Maybe no one’s touched it because it would have to deal with child labor laws, or the K-12 school system sitting on it.

            There’s a Voc Ed center in San Jose, which is terribly underutilized. The infrastructure is there. What kind of push do you suppose would be most effective?

          • f1b0nacc1

            Tie up with building contractors (they are always short of reliable labor), auto repair centers (ditto), and even auto dealerships (getting certified by these guys is a license to print money), and as much as I hate it, hook up with the local crafts unions and invite them to use it as a pipeline for the next generation of members. Finally, get involved with some computer DIY hobbyists, and robotics types. This last one is a long shot, but you never know when you are going to find a burning need for decent technicians.

            Just ideas off the top of my head, but all of those should work well.

  • FriendlyGoat

    Thanks for making suggestions that red-state legislatures will mostly be ignoring. You are correct that they are “eager to combat academic liberal bias” and you are perceptive in calling to mind “meat ax” as their tool of choice.

    For instance: “Universities should improve the status of career teaching professors so that the current class of hyper-exploited adjuncts becomes a thing of the past” is a nice thought from TAI and the last (last) idea going on in a Republican head anywhere.

    • Anthony

      Paul Krugman wrote a piece a couple of days ago related (in my opinion) to your general thrust. That is, the relationship is in tone: ignorance = strength (“bigotry wasn’t the only dark force at work in the election, so was anti-intellectualism….”). https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/13/opinion/ignorance-is-strength.html?src=me&_r=0

      • Psalms564

        Well, if Paul Krugman wrote it…..

        • Anthony

          …must find a villain or imagined opponent where needed. Shalom.

          • Psalms564

            Link some more Salon articles. It really helps your credibility.

          • Anthony

            My credibility is not at issue (and slate provides America a service whether you approve or not); most importantly, Pait told you quite aptly that online you (JR) can write and ascribe anything personal as it is (his words) unverifiable. Shalom my virtual manufacturer of enemies.

          • Psalms564

            i was talking about Salon. And Paul Krugman would have been my enemy only if I were stupid enough to listen to his advice.
            I also agree with you that your credibility is not an issue. Since you have none, how can it be?

          • Anthony

            JR, you visit websites and spew negativity. Why. Has life been so mis-formed (mirror my man mirror). But I suggest you move on to your next imagined opponent as your life entails (takes on) too much anonymous web trolling. And again quoting Pait, It’s best to have the…have the last word. Shalom (and Salon also provides an American service whether you approve or not).

          • CosmotKat

            And you Anthony do nothing but bash those with whom you disagree and hate.

          • Anthony

            Disqus has just updated its Terms of Service. Perhaps you would be better served checking that out than issuing vacuous (and misrepresenting) commentary.

          • CosmotKat

            Yes it is along with your intellectual cowardice.

          • Anthony

            Disqus has just updated (for the trolling inclined) its Terms of Service. Perhaps, you would be better served reviewing their policy than writing an inane misrepresentation. Go away!

          • CosmotKat

            It seems there are others who note your intellectual cowardice so how could my assertions be inane misrepresentation if they are true, Anthony? I see you are only capable of dealing with like minds and kindred spirits which is your prerogative, but also indicative of intellectual cowardice.

          • Anthony

            This is it (and I care nothing for your view regarding others – like kind) and because you’re an interminable internet stalker (for the record Disqus) I’ll conclude with: this is pure speculation (as you have your frequented communities “private”) but you must mistake TAI for info wars, PJ Media, Breitbart News Network, Townhall, Daily Caller, etc. But CosmoKat, TAI is not a cesspool of…and baited commentators – don’t mistake habitats. For the record Disqus, this subscriber tags my post. I have no interest in his exchange – and would rather he direct interest to topics provided.

      • FriendlyGoat

        As I have stressed before, it was up to voters from the evangelical church to insist on balanced truth for the big issues such as economic matters, civil rights, foreign affairs and the environment including climate.

        Instead, they allowed themselves to be completely seduced on wedding cakes and who will be going to what bathroom. You could find very, very few of them before the election who had either any understanding or much concern over what might replace PPACA. If Republicans put Obama’s name on it by calling it Obamacare, they were taught to hate it——-WITHOUT ASKING—–what comes next. So, the white evangelicals were the swing vote we all counted on and they went nuts on us. They let themselves and everyone else down badly with willful—–willful——preference for the petty and rejection of the serious.

        The Mexicans are rapists, Obama is a Muslim, there are “millions” of illegal votes, Putin is a good guy, Hillary is a witch. You name it, the more the story was suitable only for a tabloid, the better they liked it.

        There is no political fix in America but to fix the church. We need to either bring them back to sense—–or talk them down. But we cannot and should not ignore who gave us this catastrophe and how they came to do so. It is THE political story.

        • Anthony

          FG, before and after (election) you’ve been consistent. You have and obviously have always had character. And as I informed WigWag during campaign season Character Matters – we now see how much. But regarding these online threads, Pait made a very insightful observation that I had never considered before: anything of a personal nature (attribution, claim, etc.) is not only unverifiable but irrelevant to subject under discussion; however he further implied that over time written material will reveal more than personal claims – that also is part of both political and church story. As an aside but connected, R. Duthat has a Story on Pope Francis and Western Populism (Nationalism and its conflation of religion).

        • Tom

          “They let themselves and everyone else down badly with willful—–willful——preference for the petty and rejection of the serious.”

          That’s the funniest thing I’ve read all day.

          Oh wait.

          You’re serious.

          Now it’s the saddest.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Yes, completely serious.

          • Tom

            I know. That’s what saddens me.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You’re not sad about me. You’re laughing at me. Whether you can keep your tribe laughing through this year and next is an open question—–because, frankly, though they may not have to bake an objectionable cake (that nearly none of them were in the business to bake anyway), they may notice that just about everything else done by the Trump Administration will be for the Mar-a-Lago club class.

          • Tom

            Get over yourself.
            You don’t get that the people who you’re in the tank for don’t give two cares about you or the people you care about. The only difference between their policies and Trump’s is that they dress them up in pretty rhetoric.
            It’s long past time you figured that out.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Health insurance is one of the big issues on which some from your school of thought may begin to question whether the wedding cake flap was worth it. The real disclosure starts very soon.

          • Tom

            My school of thought being the NeverTrumpNeverClinton crowd?

            Frankly, you might consider whether demanding people bake a cake was worth Trump. Not that you ever will.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You do know that with that statement you are implying the against-certain-cakes people do not have real discernment about what is important and what is not important, right?

      • Jim__L

        “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”
        Mark Twain (possibly, ironically, misattributed.)

        “All I know is that I know nothing.”
        Socrates

        Krugman’s conceit that economics is somehow Asimovian “psychohistory” has done more damage to this country than any amount of the Socratic humility he decries.

    • CosmotKat

      “Thanks for making suggestions that red-state legislatures will mostly be ignoring.”

      In every Goat comment you can expect a malicious lie and a smear. If anything you are consistent, goat, usually wrong, but always consistent. The tool of choice for most, if not all, Republicans would be teaching not indoctrinating and true diversity and inclusion not empty progressive sloganeering that never leads to any sort of reform just more hate on campus and a increasingly dumbed down populace who no longer know how to compete in the realm of ideas but sure know how to have a tantrum.

      • FriendlyGoat

        I think we had best just watch the legislatures and see if they do what TAI suggests, okay?

      • Jim__L

        He wasn’t always so. He’s come a bit unglued after Trump’s election.

  • Disappeared4x

    Well stated Mr Mead, especially on research in the humanities.

  • Fat_Man

    What is wrong with a meat ax? A meat ax is a far too genteel a weapon to deploy against the colleges. I would prefer to nuke them from orbit.

    Here is a solution. Set a maximum price per credit hour that any public college can charge anyone (including foreign students) for any course, and let them figure out how to cut salaries and head counts. Keep it reasonable so a kid can get a degree for the price of a good car. $150/hr. × 160 hrs (max for a 4 year degree) = $24,000.

    • f1b0nacc1

      Why not simply have the government exit the market entirely? I am not trying to be flip here….I would value your opinion.

      • Fat_Man

        Do you have any idea of how big these institutions are. I live in a city with a major State University. It covers square miles and has a medium sized cities worth of students and employees. The prospect is daunting. Any attempt to get these institutions under control will be fought ferociously. Remember for a lot of people, it is a jobs program. and not just the full professors, but the bus drivers and the janitors.

        • Angel Martin

          In the next economic crisis – many of these institutions of “higher” learning will not survive.

          Even if they adhered to standards of respectable scholarship, they would face severe cutbacks.

          But the preposterous antics of PC U has made them uniquely vulnerable to getting zeroed out.

        • f1b0nacc1

          I have been in the belly of the beast, and I absolutely agree. This is why (aside from principle, of course) that I propose simply leaving, rather than trying to reform an unreformable system. You are completely correct that any attempt to clean up the mess will be fought to the last trench, which makes a ground war against this sort of thing pointless. Nuke it from orbit, it is the only way to be sure!

          • CapitalHawk

            Sigourney Weaver approved this comment.

  • Albert8184

    We don’t need to attack the problem with a meat ax. We need to attack the problem with lethal force and a backpack full of arrest warrants.

  • lukelea

    Trump should tell Meade “you’re hired!”

  • CosmotKat

    “Attacking foul-mouthed tenured radicals who try to turn their classrooms into indoctrination shops is politically popular, but comprehensively reforming public higher education systems so they do a better job for more students is more important.”

    Isn’t attacking foul-mouthed tenured radical professors, of which there are many in academia today, part of the reform that is necessary so our students are challenged to learn not told what to think?

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    Free Markets have repeatedly proven that they are the best method of delivering goods and services. Tenure flies in the face of that efficiency, get rid of it.

    • Jim__L

      The original flash point from which tenure started in this country, if I recall correctly, was a professor at Stanford who criticized the railroads for various reasons. His firing (under pressure from Leland Stanford’s widow) prompted some universities to offer lifetime tenure, which (in the best free-market fashion) all universities soon picked up as a perk of employment to attract the best talent.

  • ljgude

    I retired from the academic world in the last century and I have to agree that there are more important reforms in higher education than curbing the abuse of tenure by those who want to teach what to think as opposed to how to think – a distinction evidently now lost in antiquity. I watched the growth of administration ruin higher education in two countries where I have worked. The USA and Australia. The sad story of Chicago State University going broke appeared in TAI last year I believe. I worked for its predecessor Chicago State College in the 60s when it actually served its community. The administrators at CSU contributed to the disaster by failing to collect tuition for a semester! I would cut administration in half and if they have to work 80 hours a week filling our Government forms so be it. The purpose of these institutions is to teach, not to document stuff. I also agree that the peonage of adjuncts should end. The only time current adjunct rates are justified is as an honorarium to successful professionals making high salaries in their primary employment. I would propose a reservation of tenure to ‘institutional treasures’ (eg Noam Chomsky – someone whose politics I disagree with) and a class of full time professors who would just be employees subject to promotion but not placed in the up to tenure or out predicament that many face. Like adjuncts they should be let go when their services are not needed or they use their classrooms for indoctrination. sexual adventurism, or other unseemly activity. As a conservative I would recommend academics found guilty of such offences be subjected to the discipline of the public stocks. The Good Lord knows that some of the things I got up to as an academic might well have seen me on involuntary public display had I been caught. 😉

  • Proud Skeptic

    One has to wonder what the argument is to give tenure to a mathematician, geologist, an engineering professor, a computer science professor or any other discipline where there is no need to protect free speech. What could any of the professors who is simply doing the job he was hired to do be fearful of that would justify tenure protection?

    On the flip side of the coin, when you are talking about the classic hard-to-justify-their-existence-in-the-first-place gender studies and professors of similar frivolities…why not just stop spending money on this foolishness and start getting the cost of education back in line?

    Tenure is outdated. Theoretically, our universities are open minded enough at this point where a formal contract to protect free speech should not be required.

    • lawfrench

      Even in case of Maths, geology etc. profs it would be easy to go after these people for non-work related political and other beliefs, should tenure be abolished. Therefore tenure appears to me to protect any professor forom arbitrary persecution based on their exercising of non-work-related free speech.
      Now I also agree something has to be done regarding ideological brainwashing on campuses, but abolition of tenure does not seem to be the reasonable solution

      • Proud Skeptic

        One wonders what it is about colleges that make them so vicious that they have to protect their employees from their own administration.

        Do doctors need such protection from hospitals? Do masons need such protections from masonry contractors? How about people who write software? Or people who work at Home Depot?

        Nope…this is just plain wrong.

        • lawfrench

          I agree the pro-tenure arguments are not overwhelming and a quick search produces also economic arguments, for example:

          http://cgi.stanford.edu/~dept-ctl/tomprof/posting.php?ID=106

          Few professors would give up much in the way of wages for protection against external political forces-because most professors never say anything controversial in class and precious few ever go public with their views. However, even professors who remain cloistered in their labs or in library corridors seek tenure, and voluntarily give up good money for it. Why? The answer should be transparent: They want to guard against the vagaries of academic democracy. Such a governing system can be, and often is, tame; but it can, and often does, become petty, vicious, and unstable, fraught with changing coalitions of voters

          • Proud Skeptic

            I still say it doesn’t say much for the management environment at those schools. I worked in the construction industry (management) for 34 years and not once was anyone even remotely threatened for expressing any personal view, whatsoever.
            But I guess construction is more enlightened than academia.

  • guesst

    Trump goes after Congress over Term Limits.

© The American Interest LLC 2005-2017 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service