Thinking REALLY Big, Paradigm Shifting, Morphing the Universities

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    Posted: 12 May 2009 10:27 AM #16

    cbsofla - 12 May 2009 12:48 AM

    I grasped it. I disagree strongly with the emphasis on financial opportunism.

    Hey, you go hug a tree, I will buy the tree for you to hug.

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    “Even in the worst of times, someone turns a profit. . ” —#162 Ferengi: Rules of Acquisition

         
  • Posted: 12 May 2009 10:57 AM #17

    cbsofla - 12 May 2009 12:48 AM
    TanToday - 11 May 2009 10:37 AM

    I don’t think everyone has quite grasped what I was TRYING to communicate…
    Just think about the $$$$ that can be made…

    I grasped it. I disagree strongly with the emphasis on financial opportunism.

    Second:
    I have no problem using these pretty shiny tools and toys to supplement and facilitate learning. As Zeke pointed out, that process is inexorable. And I’m all in favor of more and more Apple trees.

    Finally, on the benefits of e-learning:
    Distance learning has lots of specific advantages. It does open up many opportunities that we could hardly have imagined a decade ago. And, still, it’s far from ideal. Following mpjww’s first response, there’s far more to learning than just the facts, ma’am. We’re based on carbon, not silicon.

    cb

    Unfortunately, most university administrators are not “paid” to do what’s best…they’re “paid” to see that the university makes as much $$ as possible.  PERIOD


    DH teaches at a university that, despite the fact the government has promised them enough money to continue functioning as they have, for the next two years, STILL plans to make university-wide cuts of at least 10%.  They are not cutting FLUFF.  They are cutting the meat of many programs.  The reason is, similar to what the banks did when *they* got the $$ from the government - to paraphrase…“The government money is not ‘forever’, so we need to put the money under our mattress for a rainy day.”  rolleyes  They don’t even realize that THIS is is rainy day and what the government is doing is TRYING to help us all get through it, until the sun shines again.  :-(  (oh…I didn’t mention that the president of said university is a *dentist*...nothing against dentists…they are great at taking care of our dental health…I just don’t think they may be the best choice as the person who chooses the direction of an institution of higher learning rolleyes )


    All that is to say that Tan is right…if universities see the potential to make a lot of money (or save a lot of money), they will do it..it won’t matter whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing.  In our uber-capitalist society, the almighty dollar rules with an iron fist.  I’m not saying that the move shouldn’t or won’t happen, but I’m saying it will be driven by the “look how much money we can make” mentality.

    Gone are the days of most appreciating an education for the KNOWLEDGE it brings and the way it edifies the lives of the educated.  We are in a society that values money above all.  I believe that *any* “ism” which runs amok WILL eventually implode.

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    Id quot circumiret, circumveniat

         
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    Posted: 12 May 2009 02:55 PM #18

    sstenner - 12 May 2009 01:57 PM
    cbsofla - 12 May 2009 12:48 AM
    TanToday - 11 May 2009 10:37 AM

    I don’t think everyone has quite grasped what I was TRYING to communicate…
    Just think about the $$$$ that can be made…

    I grasped it. I disagree strongly with the emphasis on financial opportunism.

    Unfortunately, most university administrators are not “paid” to do what’s best…they’re “paid” to see that the university makes as much $$ as possible.  PERIOD…

    All that is to say that Tan is right…
    if universities see the potential to make a lot of money (or save a lot of money), they will do it..it won’t matter whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing.  In our uber-capitalist society, the almighty dollar rules with an iron fist.  I’m not saying that the move shouldn’t or won’t happen, but I’m saying it will be driven by the “look how much money we can make” mentality.

    Gone are the days of most appreciating an education for the KNOWLEDGE it brings and the way it edifies the lives of the educated.  We are in a society that values money above all.  I believe that *any* “ism” which runs amok WILL eventually implode.

    I made one statement on the finances, and said much more on the issues of digitally-driven distance learning.

    Evidently we agree that much of this will likely continue developing in this direction. I maintain simply that it’s to our detriment (along the lines of your final statement), somewhat similar to the greedy quarterly-profit driven myopia of “Drill, baby, drill!”

    One related aspect: no question that these things have all too much power, and certainly, lately, they dominate too much of every day’s news. However, just as it’s logically absurd to universalize ALL higher education as empty, similarly I don’t see justification for claiming that “society… values money above all.”

    Lots of people do, sure, and many of them have too much power. So much of that is blatantly obvious as evidenced by the financial morass of the last year or two. But absolutist rhetoric doesn’t help, whether it’s bemoaning education or a materialistic worldview. Mixed in with all the crassness and cheapness is a tremendous amount of good and noble conduct, decent people, working to make the world a little better.

    cb

         
  • Posted: 12 May 2009 04:16 PM #19

    cbsofla - 12 May 2009 05:55 PM

    I made one statement on the finances, and said much more on the issues of digitally-driven distance learning.

    Evidently we agree that much of this will likely continue developing in this direction. I maintain simply that it’s to our detriment (along the lines of your final statement), somewhat similar to the greedy quarterly-profit driven myopia of “Drill, baby, drill!”

    One related aspect: no question that these things have all too much power, and certainly, lately, they dominate too much of every day’s news. However, just as it’s logically absurd to universalize ALL higher education as empty, similarly I don’t see justification for claiming that “society… values money above all.”

    Lots of people do, sure, and many of them have too much power. So much of that is blatantly obvious as evidenced by the financial morass of the last year or two. But absolutist rhetoric doesn’t help, whether it’s bemoaning education or a materialistic worldview. Mixed in with all the crassness and cheapness is a tremendous amount of good and noble conduct, decent people, working to make the world a little better.

    cb

    This is what happens when a topic from AFB gets moved to some far away solar system.  The “F” is for finance.  We work hard to make money.  We don’t think it is evil. 

    I don’t care to read political screeds like this.  If I did, I visit The Daily Kos.

         
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    Posted: 12 May 2009 05:57 PM #20

    capablanca - 12 May 2009 07:16 PM

    ... We work hard to make money.  We don’t think it is evil.

    Agreed again. I know I work hard for mine, and I don’t think it’s evil.

    It’s one thing to adapt tactics and techniques in order to sustain and, hopefully, grow any enterprise that requires funding. It’s another to let the focus on money itself override that. It’s a means to an end.

    Anyhow, again, my financial assertion was the less important, at least in mymind. My greater concern in response to the initial post still lies more in the aspects of how these dynamics of depersonalized technology (including the dollar-focus) can nonetheless diminish the effectiveness of human interaction in the process of education.

    Outta here—off to the commute.

    cb

    [ Edited: 12 May 2009 06:01 PM by cb50dc ]      
  • Posted: 13 May 2009 05:11 AM #21

    On the money thing,


    Good read,

         
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    Posted: 15 May 2009 01:40 AM #22

    danthemason - 13 May 2009 08:11 AM

    On the money thing,

    Good read,

    Right. I’ll finish up my contributions on the economic side. In fact, Rand does put forth some key points I just stated:

    “Agreed again. I know I work hard for mine, and I don?t think it?s evil.”
    “It?s one thing to adapt tactics and techniques in order to sustain and, hopefully, grow any enterprise that requires funding. It?s another to let the focus on money itself override that. It?s a means to an end.”

    The first lines of Francisco’s paragraphs six and ten bring out the same crucial points:
    “But money is only a tool…
    “Money will always remain an effect and refuse to replace you as the cause.”

    FWIW, I read the whole book one long weekend home from college. Could hardly put it down. I admire The Fountainhead even more, for its yet greater ideals: doing one’s work, creatively, independently (I presume you read it. If so, recall that howard Roark did not even care about getting MONEY for his design; he was more concerned with seeing his vision built). I see Howard Roark’s motives, goals, and methods as fully consistent with, yet superceding, John Galt’s.

    = = = = = =

    One other point, again in discussion from your statement:

    “Evidently we agree that much of this will likely continue developing in this direction. I maintain simply that it?s to our detriment (along the lines of your final statement), somewhat similar to the greedy quarterly-profit driven myopia of ?Drill, baby, drill!?

    To keep it all together in one block here, “your final statement,” with which I agreed, read:

    danthemason - 13 May 2009 08:11 AM

    “I?m not saying that the move shouldn?t or won?t happen, but I?m saying it will be driven by the ?look how much money we can make? mentality.
    Gone are the days of most appreciating an education for the KNOWLEDGE it brings and the way it edifies the lives of the educated.  We are in a society that values money above all. I believe that *any* ?ism? which runs amok WILL eventually implode.

    I concur. I see the “ism” already running amok.

    We agree that money’s not evil, that it merely provides a means to an end; it itself is a result. When it’s a result of honest, responsible work, I respect it altogether.

    I fail to see any “screed” in any of this. How do you define it? All sources I checked indicate lengthy, haranguing, ranting and raving. If it’s length that concerns you, Francisco’s speech exceeds probably all of the posts on this topic. If it’s rant you dislike, you won’t find it in my posts. Maybe you’ve read something into them, but there’s no empirical basis for it.

    I agree and live by much in Rand’s outlook. But her irrational leaps, unjustifiable assumptions, false dichotomies, hyperbole and reductio ad absurdums—in not only Francisco, but also in most of her protagonists’ monologues—those do meet the definitions of “screed.” Not only screed, but really screwed-up anti-logic.

    All this said, my main concern, as stated in my initial response, is the quality of education. To the extent that monetizing education improves or at least sustains its quality and accessibility, fine. And I certainly believe Apple continues steadily building its way toward an ever-expanding market share there, through (a la Roark) a unique, creative, and obviously, a tremendously profitable vision. So I’m proud to invest more in it every month.

    Best regards,
    cb

    [ Edited: 15 May 2009 01:53 AM by cb50dc ]      
  • Posted: 15 May 2009 02:31 PM #23

    cbsofla - 15 May 2009 04:40 AM

    I fail to see any “screed” in any of this. How do you define it? All sources I checked indicate lengthy, haranguing, ranting and raving. If it’s length that concerns you, Francisco’s speech exceeds probably all of the posts on this topic. If it’s rant you dislike, you won’t find it in my posts. Maybe you’ve read something into them, but there’s no empirical basis for it.

     

    “... greedy quarterly-profit driven myopia of ?Drill, baby, drill! ...”

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    Posted: 16 May 2009 12:53 AM #24

    Ragnar Danneskjold - 15 May 2009 05:31 PM
    cbsofla - 15 May 2009 04:40 AM

    I fail to see any “screed” in any of this. How do you define it? All sources I checked indicate lengthy, haranguing, ranting and raving. If it’s length that concerns you, Francisco’s speech exceeds probably all of the posts on this topic. If it’s rant you dislike, you won’t find it in my posts. Maybe you’ve read something into them, but there’s no empirical basis for it.

     

    “... greedy quarterly-profit driven myopia of ?Drill, baby, drill! ...”

    By focusing on only short-term immediate gains, and too often ignoring or severely discounting the complexities that affect not only one’s own livelihood, and not only one’s community, state, or nation, but in fact now a more global economy, the integrity and nobility of rational self-interest deteriorates into (a) the end justifying the means, and (b) denial of longer-term impacts.

    This example, validly representing a very significant display of shortsightedness, hardly fits the definition of “screed.” As I recall Rand often saying outright, either herself or thorugh a character, “Check your premises.” Here, it’s “check your dictionary.” You don’t care for screed? Then you’d better keep away from Rand’s heroes (and too much of her prose).

    If you choose to interpret “drill” as something more intensely ideological than what it says for itself on the very practical level, then no amount of more objective reasoning will likely help.

    Again, of all Rand’s major protagonists, I’ll affirm that Roark still stands tallest. And ironically, he had values and integrity that far exceeded THE MONEY WHICH HE COULD RIGHTFULLY EARN. He let Peter Keating take it. Remember, Don, I agree with at least some aspects of probably 70-80% of Rand’s viewpoints.

    (I might also hold highly the heroine of We the Living—can’t recall her name—if the story’s conclusion sticks with me, she is shot and dies in the process of escaping totalitarianism. Again, money and self-determination are certainly integral in the picture, but a greater nobility transcends the cash drawer.)

    Interesting, Don, that whereas I’ve gladly pointed out our fundamental agreement on most specifics of the larger picture, and, coincidentally, that I affirmed some key principles that your citation of Francisco echoed—you choose not only to sidestep those points, but also your focus seems to rest on having isolated one particular remark, and unfortunately in misinterpreting it, trying to dismiss it as “screed” (again, not in the dictionaries I found…)

    Feel free to post a last word on this, if you’re the sort who must have a “last word;” I’m not. I’m done with this round.

    Have a good weekend.

    Sincerely best regards,
    Chuck

    cb

         
  • Posted: 04 June 2009 12:17 AM #25

    Yes, you come out, lazy, and programmed?and in this blistering age of information.

    pret auto

         
  • Posted: 04 June 2009 03:17 AM #26

    Welcome Catherine. Glad you’re here.