On Harvard’s new study, Pathways to Prosperity ; I think it’s time to dismantle our illusions of academic grandeur

I was “happy” to see this Yahoo story which broke ranks with the great pervasive cultural lie of the West which presumes biological equality as a natural right. I wonder if this is a harbinger of a ground-breaking paradigm shift which society sorely needs? A wake up call that disrupts our herd-like procession to embrace extended education for all and its continued propping of a matrix that derives power from such an unrealistic ethic?

Superior Chinese mothers aside, there are many way to excel in this world and countless pathways to personal prosperity, and though it may scream sacrilege to those who lovingly tout the wondrous bliss of applied studiousness and book-smarts, not everyone can benefit by such assiduous devotion to academic pursuits. Somewhere along the way, this educational paradigm become a self-perpetuating status-tinged drive to compete and outdo in the realm of degrees and diplomas without regard to the fact that this world is also fueled by bricks and mortar. Pencil-pushing bureaucratic zombies very rarely contribute anything worthy of foundational note in this world. They are in place to enable and affirm the parasitic survival of high-ranking management and MBA types who themselves also create very little; but having attained advanced degrees, are in positions institutionally-enabled to leech every last drop of prosperity our hollow consumerist culture can be bled for.

From the story:

The study is inspired by European systems of education, and its authors say too many students are graduating high school without middle-level skills that could help them land well-paying jobs as electricians, for example. About a third of jobs in the next decade won’t require a four-year college education, the study says, and this program would help American kids prepare for them.

Interesting to see such an explosive anti-degreed perspective expressed to a mainstream audience. The Harvard paper, “Pathways to Prosperity” looks interesting. I downloaded a copy and plan on reading it.

We’ve painted ourselves into a corner with this ridiculous “everyone deserves a college education” nonsense. It implies an innate level of ability for everyone in the realm of intelligence and studious application. Once such “rights” were proffered and proclaimed by Pollyanna politicians, they become an unquestionable privilege and to denounce them or scale them down was equivalent to asserting that not everyone possesses equal intelligence or scholarly skills. A horrible sentiment indeed, for equality has become the holy grail of American democracy and is so tainted and misrepresented that its bleaker insinuations have been pushed aside.

The equal ability to seek education is one thing. The ability to excel is quite another and clearly not equally apportioned, despite the well-intentioned efforts of governmental social engineering. We don’t all meet the minimum threshold requirements to excel at such endeavors and it’s time to confront the realization that all skills, academic and not, are equally valuable in contributing to our civilization’s functionality

I was struck by President Obama’s observation stated at the end of the story. “President Obama has said he wants the United States to lead the world in college graduation rates again.”

Not to single him out, for all modern politicians praise the American triumph of education and house ownership to Heavenly levels when in fact they are hardly there. They are byproducts of an overly affluent society. Our perspective and expectations are trapped in the clouds and we are overlooking the hard, tired work that needs to be done here, outside the classroom.