Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Students Fight for their Lives."

All over the former industrial world there are serious cut backs in social services. Education, health, housing, and so on.

Indeed some years ago the Republican party here in the land of the free abolished the Department of Health Education, and Welfare. They saw it as a subversive socialist wedge.

The same now seems to be happening in the U.K. The Tories,..aka Republicans raised higher education cost by a factor of three. Thereby cutting out the better part of a generation from ever getting even a basic degree.

Btw in this era a B.A. is needed even to be a clerk in a department store. So this act will condemn hundreds of thousands of Brits to a life of low income employment.

A grand social reformation is happening in the West. The question is if it will be be back towards a pre-ww2 standard of living or something slightly better. Say a 1955/'60 level of liberal democracy.

Not as wealthy as late 20th century lifestyles, but it's at least civilized. I remember because I was there. Be nice to have the milk delivered again. That, and the schools will actually teach kids to read, and write.

Stay Tuned.


Zaek said...

Eventually it will be back to a pre-ww1 standard of living.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes I'm sorry I lived into this era.

Anonymous said...

A little research is required Sydney.
The Tories, Conservatives are the nominal right wing party in England.
Pro-market, pro-civil rights etc.
The Liberal Democrats are historically the middle party.

But with Bliar especially and to an extent Stalin, sorry Brown moving Nu-Labour to the centre and in some places more right wing than the Tories everwhere, the Libs are the most left wing party in the U.K.

We have a coalition government of Consevatives and Liberal Democrats.
This is fairly unique in peacetime Britain and both parties have joined together to give us the only stable government that could be formed from the General Election.
You have taken a fairly hysterical view of the cuts being proposed.
Bliar tried to force university attendance up to 50% of the population which is obviously ridiculous.
You should see some of the Mickey Mouse degrees on offer without mentioning Media studies, Marketing and all the other useless crap.

poetreader said...

In the employment situation, I've long felt that the culprit is not so much the difficulty of getting college or university degrees, as the ridiculousness of requiring credentials that are meaningless in context. A university is NOT the same thing as a trade school, and is not suitable for everyone. Kinkynik is quite correct in pointing out that the effort to get everyone into college results in devaluing college to the place where it no longer can produce the impractical but vital class of the truly well-educated and thoughtful.
This emphasis has left us with a severe shortage of skilled craftsman - plumbers, electricians, and the like - and a serious oversupply of paper pushers.
I don't think the answer is to pum money we just don't have into a wheel-spinning enterprise, but to take a close look at what we are doing and should be doing. My feeling is that this would lead to a savings of money AND to an improvement in society.


Zaek said...

Ed is right. In the USA at any rate, the notion of public university education as the key to middle class prosperity for the masses is defunct, and is an obsolescent delusion maintained in the service of a pork barrel racket that is quickly going broke. What with crushing student debt, a college education now benefits the college far more than the student. At this point in history, I would guess that for most people trade school is a much better bet.

Anonymous said...

OOPS,..the images dropped out.

I see what I can do.


Uncle 2012 said...

Granted my position may be outdated, like me. Still I remember the fight here to get Universities to open up to more people.

As a youth I was part of that that mayhem. Yeah I got my papers, and they saved my butt,..for a while.

You guys are right I guess that it has become a vast degree mill that leaves students in debt for years.

I guess my reaction was emotional. Like I say I recall too well the doors being shut in our faces so getting 'in' was a goal back in the day.

I still have reflexes from when our Empire was real.

poetreader said...

Yes, Uncle,
THEN so many were being excluded from real education for no other reason than little things like skin color and genealogy. That needed to change.

But NOW, though the schools are full of people, few have any access to real education, or to the kind of training that would be really helpful to them and to society.

You know, I have a heck of a lot more respect for a Master Plumber or a Master Electrician than for a Master of Business Administration. We need more of the skilled craftsman that keep society running.


Zaek said...

And better coffee grinders! The sort you can crank by hand and that don't need integrated chips. I say we get back to manufacturing stuff that works for the long haul. We'll need it. And making decent products like that will put plenty of people to work.

Anonymous said...


Ed and Zaek are right.
We have to get our plumbers from Poland.

A cast iron coffee grinder you could hand down to your Grandchildren instead of a plasticy faux metal thing that starts to shed parts after 5 uses, would be a thing of intrinsic beauty.

They could make a new programme

"Grumpy old Poofs."