On March 16, 2019, Steven Lamb and Kevin Lynn discussed the college admissions scandal that has been dominating the news over the past several days. The conversation quickly veered to a deeper inquiry into a system hyper-focused on credentialization over systems that produce critical and independent thinkers as well as college education as a racket. They jump down several rabbit holes in this podcast ignored by the mainstream media and other alt media sites.
The link in LA Times to the college admissions scandal: https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/l…
The passage from Jane Jacobs’ book Dark Age Ahead read during the podcast:
“When the stream of GI students ran dry, their hunger for education was missed in university communities, along with their government-guaranteed tuitions. Credentialing emerged as a growth industry in the 1960s just when universities needed it to address problems of their own. The more successful credentialing became as a growth industry, the more it dominated education, from the viewpoints of both teachers and students. Teachers could not help despairing of classes whose members seemed less interested in learning than in doing the minimum work required to get by and get out. Enthusiastic students could not help despairing of institutions that seemed to think of them as raw material to process as efficiently as possible rather than as human beings with burning questions and confusions about the world and doubts about why they were sinking time and money into this prelude to their working lives.
Students who are passionate about learning, or could become so, do exist. Faculty members who love their subjects passionately and are eager to teach what they know and to plumb its depths further also exist. But institutions devoted to respecting and fulfilling these needs as their first purposes have become rare, under pressure of different necessities. Similar trends in Britain have begun to worry some educators there. My impression is that university-educated parents or grandparents of students presently in university do not realize how much the experience has changed since their own student days, nor do the students themselves, since they have not experienced anything else. Only faculty who have lived through the loss realize what has been lost.
A vigorous culture capable of making corrective, stabilizing changes depends heavily on its educated people, and especially upon their critical capacities and depth of understanding. Most parts of North America have already become backward in production and distribution of renewable forms of energy. As for the continent’s cherished automobile and roads industries, how stagnant they are! For decades, improvements in automobile manufacturing and design have come from elsewhere, notably Japan and Germany. Changes to combat the wastes of suburban sprawl and lack of suburban communities don’t come at all, in spite of much talk and hand-wringing; neither do solutions to city traffic problems, subjects I shall touch on in the next chapter. They, too, are connected with credentialism at the expense of education.” Jacobs, Jane. Dark Age Ahead. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
The passage from the book, Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich read during the podcast:
“Somebody ought to sit down and think about this, because your corporate types are soon going to be a stateless superclass, people who live for deals and golf dates and care a lot more about where you got your MBA than the country you were raised in. It’s the Middle Ages all over again, these little unaffiliated duchies and fiefdoms, flying their own flags and ready to take in any vassal who will pledge his life to the manor. Everybody busy patting himself on the back because the Reds went in the dumper is going to be wondering who won when Coca-Cola applies for a seat in the U.N.” —Scott Turow, Pleading Guilty Freeland, Chrystia. Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else (p. 38). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.