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Liberal arts schools (Page 2)
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Clinically Insane
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Jun 8, 2013, 12:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by BLAZE_MkIV View Post
I disagree.

On what basis?
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 01:47 AM
 
You weld fiber?
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 03:56 AM
 
shifuimam has said it perfectly. Personally I think we have a shortage of labor in this country. I pay electricians, carpenters and plumbers 70-100/ hr per person in the crew. They don't advertise, no website, no high priced drawn out education, based out of their house... Instead of advertising all the things they do to get my attention, they tell me what they DON'T do. They're drowning in work that nobody wants to do and making $200,000 /yr. Perfect example of too many chiefs not enough tribesmen in our society. Thanks to a culture/generation of people who told their children to go to school or end up a plumber.

Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I think this college president doesn't understand the fact that liberal arts universities are not designed to teach subjects that are of "value in real life". Liberal arts universities are designed to develop critical thinking abilities, to learn how to learn.
I think your describing it the way it should be rather than the way it is.

I think if you ask most freshman liberal arts majors why they've chosen the program/school they're in; answers would be along the lines of "I'm following my dreams and going to try and get a good job, get paid, doing something I LOVE".... and a big part of going to college for most people is parties, adventure, meeting girls/guys along the way to that 'dream' job. Nobody says Im going to college to develop my critical thinking skills. Hence it's not their purpose.
Liberal arts schools are designed to make loads of money by appealing to the "get paid for what you love" crowd; And thats exactly what they do; manipulating them into believing there are plenty of jobs in the degrees the school offers.

Theres a guy I know who works for an oil company making a large 6 fig income. He's considered one of the top managers and engineers. Upon first meeting him everybody would think he probably started out as some high grade college grad back in his day. The true story is he's an immigrant who has no degree. He began as a self taught painter, no education needed to master that. No debt to a lifetime of loans. He started a small art club in his town where people came together to make whatever they wanted. At some point he took a short low cost apprenticeship learning things about big oil. Because he was an artist he could draw what the engineers were designing as well as express his own designs better. Over the years he kept these talents merged and as he got better became an invaluable asset to the company.

He proves that arts and trade schools both have their place and are extremely valuable. But this is a much more difficult life plan to happen in the US. He would likely not been an artist or engineer if born in the US. How we, the US approach this is completely wrong. We are a nation of extremist no matter the subject. We box ourselves in with certain thought; and when we dont get our way we ask our government to step in and help box in our thoughts to one universal fast food collectivity in order to create a certain cultural WAY of doing things that doesn't make the most practical sense. As has been mentioned there are stigmas against and even laws suppressing trade schools and pushing people towards wasteful expensive education. It's 4 year university or nothing; black and white. Students are pushed to make a decision to pick a money major all the way or the art based dream job facade all the way. The reason why this liberal art debate comes up is that it's not happening in the way you say "it's designed to be"; students have no real plan; so many students go to these schools then complain about their loans and inability to find a job using their degree. In this context the Presidents (fake?) speech was valid.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 04:08 AM
 
Originally Posted by el chupacabra View Post
shifuimam has said it perfectly. Personally I think we have a shortage of labor in this country. I pay electricians, carpenters and plumbers 70-100/ hr per person in the crew. They don't advertise, no website, no high priced drawn out education, based out of their house... Instead of advertising all the things they do to get my attention, they tell me what they DON'T do. They're drowning in work that nobody wants to do and making $200,000 /yr. Perfect example of too many chiefs not enough tribesmen in our society. Thanks to a culture/generation of people who told their children to go to school or end up a plumber.


I think your describing it the way it should be rather than the way it is.

I think if you ask most freshman liberal arts majors why they've chosen the program/school they're in; answers would be along the lines of "I'm following my dreams and going to try and get a good job, get paid, doing something I LOVE".... and a big part of going to college for most people is parties, adventure, meeting girls/guys along the way to that 'dream' job. Nobody says Im going to college to develop my critical thinking skills. Hence it's not their purpose.
Liberal arts schools are designed to make loads of money by appealing to the "get paid for what you love" crowd; And thats exactly what they do; manipulating them into believing there are plenty of jobs in the degrees the school offers.

Theres a guy I know who works for an oil company making a large 6 fig income. He's considered one of the top managers and engineers. Upon first meeting him everybody would think he probably started out as some high grade college grad back in his day. The true story is he's an immigrant who has no degree. He began as a self taught painter, no education needed to master that. No debt to a lifetime of loans. He started a small art club in his town where people came together to make whatever they wanted. At some point he took a short low cost apprenticeship learning things about big oil. Because he was an artist he could draw what the engineers were designing as well as express his own designs better. Over the years he kept these talents merged and as he got better became an invaluable asset to the company.

He proves that arts and trade schools both have their place and are extremely valuable. But this is a much more difficult life plan to happen in the US. He would likely not been an artist or engineer if born in the US. How we, the US approach this is completely wrong. We are a nation of extremist no matter the subject. We box ourselves in with certain thought; and when we dont get our way we ask our government to step in and help box in our thoughts to one universal fast food collectivity in order to create a certain cultural WAY of doing things that doesn't make the most practical sense. As has been mentioned there are stigmas against and even laws suppressing trade schools and pushing people towards wasteful expensive education. It's 4 year university or nothing; black and white. Students are pushed to make a decision to pick a money major all the way or the art based dream job facade all the way. The reason why this liberal art debate comes up is that it's not happening in the way you say "it's designed to be"; students have no real plan; so many students go to these schools then complain about their loans and inability to find a job using their degree. In this context the Presidents (fake?) speech was valid.

Except liberal arts programs have nothing to do with art. Liberal arts programs include "money making" subject matter...

The traditional liberal arts are: grammar, rhetoric, logic, geometry, arithmetic, music, astronomy.

The term is used in a modern sense to refer to all of the arts and sciences but not the professions (business, education, engineering, etc..)

A liberal arts college is one that has a philosophy that college students should receive a well rounded education that includes what most of us call "general education" as a significant component as opposed to a vocational or occupational education.

It doesn't mean that they only teach the traditional or modern liberal arts - it means that every student will receive a strong education in those subjects in addition to their major.

The liberal arts college of a university is simply the arm of that university that teaches courses in the liberal arts to all students of that university.

Journalism is a professional field though often found in the English department. The others you mention would be among the liberal arts.

If you think that every college graduate should have taken several courses in composition, math, sciences, social sciences, history, language, etc... in addition to his major then you support a liberal arts education. If you think all of those are "Mickey Mouse courses" or a waste of time that would be better spent learning to do a job then you support vocational/professional education.

You can get a liberal arts education in either a liberal arts college or at a university. You don't generally get the vocational/professional education at a liberal arts college.

In your case, just about every college of both types will offer the majors/minors you're considering.

I'd say though - at a good liberal arts program you'd be taking those "minor" courses you have listed as part of your general education whether you wanted to learn them or not.

Note: "Liberal" in this use has nothing at all to do with the Liberal-Conservative political spectrum. In this use, 'liberal' means that the intent is to impart general knowledge and teach you to think. 'Professional' is used to mean the intent is to teach you the specifics of how to do a job.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 12:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Except liberal arts programs have nothing to do with art. Liberal arts programs include "money making" subject matter...
It has nothing to do with art? It revolves around art, which is why I used a classic art example. Technically I have liberal arts degree biology; and quite useless it is for making money. Not all these sciences are offered at every liberal arts college but every liberal arts college has all the classic arts. In a liberal arts specific university they might have programs that wouldn't be considered liberal arts at other universities but that they call liberal arts because they're a liberal art school. The overwhelming majority of their programs are art based. And here I thought we'd be tired of semantics in this thread.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 12:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
On what basis?
You're in the wrong conversation. We're talking about what kinds of jobs are available in the job market. Your stuck on newspaper ads vs twitter.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 12:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by el chupacabra View Post
It has nothing to do with art? It revolves around art, which is why I used a classic art example. Technically I have liberal arts degree biology; and quite useless it is for making money. Not all these sciences are offered at every liberal arts college but every liberal arts college has all the classic arts. In a liberal arts specific university they might have programs that wouldn't be considered liberal arts at other universities but that they call liberal arts because they're a liberal art school. The overwhelming majority of their programs are art based. And here I thought we'd be tired of semantics in this thread.

LIberal arts is not art the way most people think of art (i.e. painting, music, sculpting, etc.), unless you see subjects such as foreign languages as art?
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 12:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by BLAZE_MkIV View Post
You're in the wrong conversation. We're talking about what kinds of jobs are available in the job market. Your stuck on newspaper ads vs twitter.
It's "you're". I get the point you are trying to make, but I don't think you really get mine.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 01:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by BLAZE_MkIV View Post
You're in the wrong conversation. We're talking about what kinds of jobs are available in the job market. Your stuck on newspaper ads vs twitter.
The point is:

The broader your horizon, the more your perspective and interdisciplinary skills will help you adapt to changing job landscapes and different jobs, some of which may have not even been dreamed up yet.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 01:57 PM
 
The asst manager at my Starbucks has a Master's in Renaissance literature, she makes an amazing mocha latte.
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Jun 8, 2013, 04:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
The asst manager at my Starbucks has a Master's in Renaissance literature, she makes an amazing mocha latte.

I can personally do without all of these sorts of little personal anecdotes. There are people with all sorts of degrees doing all sorts of things. I'm kind of more interested in the larger picture involving much larger sample sizes, just my two cents...

Also, it is "Masters in Renaissance Literature".
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 04:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I can personally do without all of these sorts of little personal anecdotes. There are people with all sorts of degrees doing all sorts of things. I'm kind of more interested in the larger picture involving much larger sample sizes, just my two cents...

Also, it is "Masters in Renaissance Literature".
Incorrect. Masters Degree or Master’s Degree?

Master's is possessive, and it doesn't change the fact that she can't find anything that pays more than $12 /hr.
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Jun 8, 2013, 04:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Incorrect. Masters Degree or Master’s Degree?

Master's is possessive, and it doesn't change the fact that she can't find anything that pays more than $12 /hr.

I stand corrected on it being possessive.

I still don't find much of a take home point in your anecdote though. There are people with all sorts of degrees in all sorts of areas that have great difficulty making more than $12/hour, including PhDs.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 07:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
The asst manager at my Starbucks has a Master's in Renaissance literature, she makes an amazing mocha latte.
The plural of anecdote isn't data. I think I mentioned that before.

Last time I worked for somebody else, with my degree in Fine Arts, my time was being billed to clients at a rate of £225/hour, about $340. My weekly billable hours were rarely less than 50, frequently more than 60.

PS: Billable hours ≠ personal income.
( Last edited by Phileas; Jun 8, 2013 at 08:19 PM. )
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 09:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
The plural of anecdote isn't data. I think I mentioned that before.

Last time I worked for somebody else, with my degree in Fine Arts, my time was being billed to clients at a rate of £225/hour, about $340. My weekly billable hours were rarely less than 50, frequently more than 60.

PS: Billable hours ≠ personal income.
Well, I have PhDs in Theology, Divinity, Comparative Religious Studies, and Humane Letters (hon). My consulting hours are from 7am-12pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays, I charge $2,000 /hr (paid to St Jude's), with a 2 hour min, and I'm booked for the next 3 months.

Who cares? What I'm saying is I see a disproportionate number of L.A. guys and girls living paycheck to paycheck (or on the dole), compared to people who have "hard science" or tech degrees. Having a BA or MA means much less now than it did in decades prior.
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Jun 8, 2013, 09:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Well, I have PhDs in Theology, Divinity, Comparative Religious Studies, and Humane Letters (hon). My consulting hours are from 7am-12pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays, I charge $2,000 /hr (paid to St Jude's), with a 2 hour min, and I'm booked for the next 3 months.

Who cares? What I'm saying is I see a disproportionate number of L.A. guys and girls living paycheck to paycheck (or on the dole), compared to people who have "hard science" or tech degrees. Having a BA or MA means much less now than it did in decades prior.

Doesn't that cut into your time reading to little kids with cancer?

Nobody is disputing that certain occupations are assigned greater value in our society in terms of how much money they can make. Where I disagree with what you've written is where you assign this to the degrees themselves, rather than the people who have these degrees. For starters, as you've pointed out, a BA means much less than it did in decades prior, meaning what your BA is in doesn't particularly matter as much as it did in decades prior - in many cases you just need some sort of BA to be looked at by various employers.

But again, the point here is that the liberal arts approach is designed to produce adaptable, well-rounded people that can figure out a number of paths for themselves, many of them in today's day and age of the non-cookie cutter variety.

The whole degree x = probability y of getting job z doesn't really work, I don't think. For one, even if somebody gets job z, they often decide to switch jobs at a greater rate than our parent's generation.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 09:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post

Who cares? What I'm saying is I see a disproportionate number of L.A. guys and girls living paycheck to paycheck (or on the dole), compared to people who have "hard science" or tech degrees. Having a BA or MA means much less now than it did in decades prior.
Hey, I'm not the one who keeps pulling out anecdotes in lieu of hard data.

Having said that, I do agree with your last statement. The biggest bubble in the US right now isn't housing or the stock market, it is education. People go into the system with an expectation of return on investment, read debt, that is not being matched by reality.

The recent spate of Masters students suing their schools for misrepresentation of possible earnings is a case in point.

At my company we have a policy of not hiring MBAs. In our experience, most candidates display cookie cutter thinking, with sky-high expectations and a culture of entitlement.

We rather hire Anthropologists, Art Historians, Cooks, Creative Writers etc. Our last hire was a presenter on the Shopping Channel in his last job.

In short, we hire people who have learned to think for themselves, who are well rounded, who bring in a different point of view. Marketing isn't brain surgery, you can teach people the basics in a couple of weeks. But the ability to think, independently, that's a skill that needs to be in place.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 10:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I get the point you are trying to make, but I don't think you really get mine.
It took me a little bit to realize you weren't being stupid. Just talking past me. You're trying to make the point that as tech / social / world changes the skills for a particular job changes. I can see this would be a problem for Fry but I don't expect this to be a problem for anyone IRL. However, totally irrelevant for people entering the job market for the first time.
     
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Jun 8, 2013, 11:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Doesn't that cut into your time reading to little kids with cancer?
More sarcasm?

Nobody is disputing that certain occupations are assigned greater value in our society in terms of how much money they can make. Where I disagree with what you've written is where you assign this to the degrees themselves, rather than the people who have these degrees. For starters, as you've pointed out, a BA means much less than it did in decades prior, meaning what your BA is in doesn't particularly matter as much as it did in decades prior - in many cases you just need some sort of BA to be looked at by various employers.

But again, the point here is that the liberal arts approach is designed to produce adaptable, well-rounded people that can figure out a number of paths for themselves, many of them in today's day and age of the non-cookie cutter variety.

The whole degree x = probability y of getting job z doesn't really work, I don't think. For one, even if somebody gets job z, they often decide to switch jobs at a greater rate than our parent's generation.
Largely unnecessary these days, though interesting in its own right. L.A. studies can be very fulfilling, but by and large they don't bring home the bacon like the sciences and tech.
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Jun 8, 2013, 11:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
Hey, I'm not the one who keeps pulling out anecdotes in lieu of hard data.
No, but like others you use sarcasm as a tool, in an attempt to belittle the person you're attempting to engage in discussion, and it's a particularly despicable practice.

Having said that, I do agree with your last statement. The biggest bubble in the US right now isn't housing or the stock market, it is education. People go into the system with an expectation of return on investment, read debt, that is not being matched by reality.

The recent spate of Masters students suing their schools for misrepresentation of possible earnings is a case in point.

At my company we have a policy of not hiring MBAs. In our experience, most candidates display cookie cutter thinking, with sky-high expectations and a culture of entitlement.

We rather hire Anthropologists, Art Historians, Cooks, Creative Writers etc. Our last hire was a presenter on the Shopping Channel in his last job.

In short, we hire people who have learned to think for themselves, who are well rounded, who bring in a different point of view. Marketing isn't brain surgery, you can teach people the basics in a couple of weeks. But the ability to think, independently, that's a skill that needs to be in place.
While also an interesting anecdote, that's far from standard corporate policy. College doesn't teach a person how to think, it teaches how to gather useful information, which can be used to great benefit in critical thinking. A degree based on LA isn't the key, but taking several courses can help anyone.
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Jun 8, 2013, 11:41 PM
 
This isn't the late 90s were the software industry was hurting for people so bad they hired anyone with a pulse (they import them from India instead.) I doubt any other science/tech industry is. The social stigma against being smart doesn't help.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 12:27 AM
 
This welded fiber I tried to make isn't transmitting jack. Is it supposed to look all melty?
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 12:35 AM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
More sarcasm?
Yes.

You claimed in the past that your going on about your wealth, education, giving to charity, etc. is to provide context, but doing the oneupmanship with Phileas you just came across as really insecure.

You don't need to prove yourself to any of us, and to be honest, I don't know if I speak for everybody here, but I don't really care about your credentials or any of these sorts of claims anyway. I just think of all people on the internet as just some guy on the internet, and I expect people to do the same with me. I don't know if you are wealthy or highly educated or any of these things, and I don't really care, I don't see you as any more or less qualified as anybody else. It's nothing personal, I'm not calling you a liar, but because none of us can validate any of our real life status, it just makes more sense to take everything read by some poster on the internet with a grain of salt.

All of the "context" you try to provide generally just comes across as dick measuring to me.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 01:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
LIberal arts is not art the way most people think of art (i.e. painting, music, sculpting, etc.), unless you see subjects such as foreign languages as art?
I always thought of literature as art, and thats exactly what foreign language is (literature) beyond the high school level.

...a few things.
I can personally do without all of these sorts of little personal anecdotes. There are people with all sorts of degrees doing all sorts of things. I'm kind of more interested in the larger picture involving much larger sample sizes,
Also, it is "Masters in Renaissance Literature".
Then can you provide us with the larger sample sizes your talking about? Rather than writing people's points off even after starting out with "I wonder how you guys feel".

I still don't find much of a take home point in your anecdote though. There are people with all sorts of degrees in all sorts of areas that have great difficulty making more than $12/hour, including PhDs.
Then can we see the large sample size hard data for this? I think your going to be hard pressed to find many electrical, mechanical, chemical, computer, engineers who are working for $12/ hr at a coffee shop or anywhere else. As opposed to a historian, because History while interesting, is more of a hobby than anything else. PhDs are valuable in the right place; but more often than not people get phds out of a desperate attempt to claw their way out of unemployment quicksand.

The whole degree x = probability y of getting job z doesn't really work, I don't think. For one, even if somebody gets job z, they often decide to switch jobs at a greater rate than our parent's generation.
Yes, in the liberal arts degree world. But as Shaddin has already brought up, and it is true, the "hard-sciences" / tech are going to yield a pretty good probability of getting the pay and job you expected/planned in the time frame you expected. No one says this is 100%; but your not going to see engineers, doctors, electricians working $12/ at the coffee shop.

Where I disagree with what you've written is where you assign this to the degrees themselves, rather than the people who have these degrees.
I would blame both; why do people have to have expensive tax payer funded degrees in something defined as "liberal arts" to be well rounded, productive, critical thinkers when there's so many people who've done equally well or better without?
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 01:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Yes.

You claimed in the past that your going on about your wealth, education, giving to charity, etc. is to provide context, but doing the oneupmanship with Phileas you just came across as really insecure. You don't need to prove yourself to any of us, and to be honest, I don't know if I speak for everybody here, but I don't really care about your credentials or any of these sorts of claims anyway. I just think of all people on the internet as just some guy on the internet, and I expect people to do the same with me. I don't know if you are wealthy or highly educated or any of these things, and I don't really care, I don't see you as any more or less qualified as anybody else. It's nothing personal, I'm not calling you a liar, but because none of us can validate any of our real life status, it just makes more sense to take everything read by some poster on the internet with a grain of salt.

All of the "context" you try to provide generally just comes across as dick measuring to me.
No, it was a statement of fact, how you perceive that is on you. It's ironic that you mention insecurity when sarcasm is the most prominent sign of it. The internet is one huge ball of the stuff, because people like yourself can't deal with disclosing the truths about themselves and struggle with the pain they feel every minute of the day. The more sarcasm, the greater the pain. It's where people emotionally hide. You talk about "dick measuring" but it never crossed my mind, again, your perspective.

I don't have shame, pride, or guilt. None of those things make a human being and you have to set them down before you can develop further.
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Jun 9, 2013, 04:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
No, it was a statement of fact, how you perceive that is on you. It's ironic that you mention insecurity when sarcasm is the most prominent sign of it. The internet is one huge ball of the stuff, because people like yourself can't deal with disclosing the truths about themselves and struggle with the pain they feel every minute of the day. The more sarcasm, the greater the pain. It's where people emotionally hide. You talk about "dick measuring" but it never crossed my mind, again, your perspective.

I don't have shame, pride, or guilt. None of those things make a human being and you have to set them down before you can develop further.

It honestly makes no difference to me whether you deem me insecure or not, but I must admit I'm unclear as to the thought process behind sarcasm being a sign of insecurity.

I have not disclosed the details of my personal life as far as my wealth and all of that is concerned because it does not matter. At all. Again, you are just a guy on the internet. Whether you make $20,000/year or $20,000,000/year, nobody will ever know, and most likely nor do they care. For all we know you could be a 60 year old black female retired professional acrobat living in North Dakota, but it doesn't really matter, at the end of the day you are just a guy on the internet, and the same is true for all of us.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 10:07 AM
 
My first undergrad degree, in Computer Science, had mathematics as an expected minor. With very few exceptions, the purpose of a math minor for computer scientists is to learn problem solving via calculus. One uses calc as a paradigm for breaking down a problem into steps for which the solution is either known or greatly simplified, and translates that into code. For various reasons, I felt that 3 more semesters of calculus was not appropriate for me, so I found an alternative called "American Studies," a group of courses that made up what could have been thought of in an earlier time as "common core curriculum," with history, art and literature classes. This worked well for me. After finishing that degree, I compared myself and how I saw and interacted with the world with my classmates in my major courses. The liberal arts-type classes I took were useful in "broadening" my outlook and appreciation of the world and how things worked together, while my comp sci classmates behaved as if they were essentially completing an expensive vocational program. I think this is important.

Up until the 1990s or so, a degree was something that set one apart from most other people, with the majority completing high school and going into a trade of sorts while those with degrees went into "professions." Since then, the undergraduate degree has become the new high school diploma, and having a BS or BA is essentially entry level for jobs that used to be filled by people who worked up to them from lower level jobs. Think about a variety of management jobs, and how many now require a business degree... Do business degrees actually teach management skills? I don't think so, and I have had a lot of management jobs.

So now, much public opinion is based on the (unspoken and unacknowledged) assumption that a bachelor of... degree is basically a vocational certificate, and the "professional" concept that used to be associated with those degrees is lost. Because of that, a degree that doesn't imply training for a "real world job" appears to be useless. It doesn't help that there are plenty of apparent "easy courses" and plenty of people who look for all the world like super slackers who "avoid hard courses where there is only one right answer for each problem," either.

This is interrelated with a current "problem" in some states, where students enroll in college and take classes for some period of time, but do not graduate. I attended a total of 5 community colleges and 5 universities in all, obtaining 2 AA, 2 BS and 1 MOT degree in the process, but I have graduated from ONLY 3 SCHOOLS. Why? Aside from being moved from place to place by the Air Force, I have run into issues with things like prerequisites for courses or whole programs; my MOT degree required a course in "medical terminology" which was not offered either by the university where I got all the other prerequisites I didn't yet have, nor by the medical university I was applying to. Yeah, let that sink in. A medical and dental school that also teaches "allied health" professionals from dental hygienist to occupational and physical therapists, and they didn't have a "medical terminology" course at all. So I tacked on my last community college for that one course. The core issue with this so called problem has two faces. First, people are eating up various financial aid programs going to classes at one or another school that they don't graduate from, and wind up either getting a whole new set of aid or running out of aid totally. Second, it makes the schools and their button-counter statistics look bad because they have low graduation rates. Somehow it looks like the state-level people who are worried about this (read "legislators and other politicians") sort of missed any of those courses that required critical thinking; if school A requires courses that it doesn't offer, and school B offers those courses, should enrolling in B count against that school for graduation rate purposes? This is lost on the suits in state capitals.

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 12:12 PM
 
Good points ghporter. I used to take classes across different schools too, but it didn't count against their score with the state because I wasn't ever enrolled in the college just the class. I don't know if thats the norm.


By the way: does anyone here consider themselves to not be a critical thinker ?
I think we need to hear the other side of the story from the non critical thinkers themselves.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 01:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
It honestly makes no difference to me whether you deem me insecure or not, but I must admit I'm unclear as to the thought process behind sarcasm being a sign of insecurity.

I have not disclosed the details of my personal life as far as my wealth and all of that is concerned because it does not matter. At all. Again, you are just a guy on the internet. Whether you make $20,000/year or $20,000,000/year, nobody will ever know, and most likely nor do they care. For all we know you could be a 60 year old black female retired professional acrobat living in North Dakota, but it doesn't really matter, at the end of the day you are just a guy on the internet, and the same is true for all of us.
Here's a short article explaining the mechanism: Sarcasm: Why It Hurts Us | Science of People

However, going even further into the subject is David Dunning's thesis on the subject. It's a textbook, and so it's rather pricey, but I found it used at my local bookstore. It's absolutely brilliant and explains the mechanisms at work. Essentially, overdevelopment of sarcasm comes from feeling socially awkward as a child, as people become adults their use of it grows, until it overtakes their ability to communicate and form proper social bonds. In essence, they spend most of their subconscious time looking for emotional jabs, not allowing themselves to grow as people.
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Jun 9, 2013, 02:40 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Here's a short article explaining the mechanism: Sarcasm: Why It Hurts Us | Science of People

However, going even further into the subject is David Dunning's thesis on the subject. It's a textbook, and so it's rather pricey, but I found it used at my local bookstore. It's absolutely brilliant and explains the mechanisms at work. Essentially, overdevelopment of sarcasm comes from feeling socially awkward as a child, as people become adults their use of it grows, until it overtakes their ability to communicate and form proper social bonds. In essence, they spend most of their subconscious time looking for emotional jabs, not allowing themselves to grow as people.

This is interesting, but the first article says that sarcasm can be a form of insecurity when it is used to avoid confrontation. I'm not avoiding confrontation, in fact, I initiated it in calling you out for your oneupmanship with Phileas.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 03:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
No, but like others you use sarcasm as a tool, in an attempt to belittle the person you're attempting to engage in discussion, and it's a particularly despicable practice.
Unless you're using the Victorian definition of sarcasm, it almost always involves irony. My comment wasn't ironic, it was factual.

Using anecdotes as a substitue for empirical data doesn't work - and you have a habit of doing just that. The barrista example you've used was designed to drive a point home, and to do so in an insulting, demeaning and ultimately pointless fashion.

Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
The asst manager at my Starbucks has a Master's in Renaissance literature, she makes an amazing mocha latte.
Tell me that's not a dick comment to make.

Try that kind of stunt in a thesis defence and watch your phd go up in flames. Which is one of the reasons I take absolutely everything you say here with a huge grain of salt. The way you communicate, and argue, seems... unusual for a somebody who lays claim to multiple doctorates.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 04:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
This is interesting, but the first article says that sarcasm can be a form of insecurity when it is used to avoid confrontation. I'm not avoiding confrontation, in fact, I initiated it in calling you out for your oneupmanship with Phileas.
The blog entry over-simplifies the points in the thesis, likely for brevity. One point is that it's largely a Western phenomenon, because it was my Taoist friends who brought up the subject to me. They were worried about me and saw my style of rhetoric (where I often used sarcasm) as being very rude and confrontational, when I thought I was simply being clever. Bright kids in our society, in particular, develop it as a way to dissect a discussion and turn it to their advantage (a form of oneupmanship in and of itself), using it as an insulator so they don't have to really take in what the other person is attempting to convey. It goes along with the concept of "I'm not here for a polite discussion, I'm here to fight". We reach a tipping point in our ability to contain our own personal frustrations and insecurities, and then lash out at others in a fashion that we believe to be more socially acceptable, as a release for our entertainment (at the expense of someone else's feelings). A while back we put up a sign at the main entry of our home that says "Sarcasm free zone, leave it at the door" because we don't want to raise our daughter in an environment where it's a common or de facto form of speech. I love her more than life itself and I want her to grow up knowing that communication is for broadening our own perspectives, rather than it being a tool for scoring imaginary points and damaging another's self-esteem. We've all shut it down cold turkey and it's been a revelation, if you aren't automatically looking for barbs, you typically pay a lot more attention to what the other person is saying.

I am just a guy, I've said that many, many times here. Finances don't make a person more important, but to be completely frank, they often cause a person grow accustomed to being heard, particularly in RL situations. "That isn't fair." I agree. As an example, at a dinner party not too long ago I started to make a comment about something to do with money, to contribute to a conversation on the subject, and it was like the old EF Hutton commercials where everyone goes quiet and listens. That's bloody uncomfortable, but like anything in life, for good or ill, you get used to it. So I often don't say anything at all, to keep from disrupting a conversation. Interestingly, in the real world I constantly get asked for info or advice relating to finances, but on here I've only been contacted twice in five years.

However, I wasn't attempting to one-up Phileas, I was actually bolstering his point, but also showing that I'm also an exception to the LA vs Tech vs MBA degree debate as well, because with anyone there can be extenuating circumstances. I do make a good bit of money working as a type of "financial life coach", even though I don't have a formal education to back it up. That was going to be my follow-up but it didn't work out that way.
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Jun 9, 2013, 04:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
A while back we put up a sign at the main entry of our home that says "Sarcasm free zone, leave it at the door" because we don't want to raise our daughter in an environment where it's a common or de facto form of speech. I love her more than life itself and I want her to grow up knowing that communication is for broadening our own perspectives, rather than it being a tool for scoring imaginary points and damaging another's self-esteem. We've all shut it down cold turkey and it's been a revelation, if you aren't automatically looking for barbs, you typically pay a lot more attention to what the other person is saying.
I like this line of thought.

I think I'll ponder that for a while. Thanks for the impulse.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 04:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
The blog entry over-simplifies the points in the thesis, likely for brevity. One point is that it's largely a Western phenomenon, because it was my Taoist friends who brought up the subject to me. They were worried about me and saw my style of rhetoric (where I often used sarcasm) as being very rude and confrontational, when I thought I was simply being clever. Bright kids in our society, in particular, develop it as a way to dissect a discussion and turn it to their advantage (a form of oneupmanship in and of itself), using it as an insulator so they don't have to really take in what the other person is attempting to convey. It goes along with the concept of "I'm not here for a polite discussion, I'm here to fight". We reach a tipping point in our ability to contain our own personal frustrations and insecurities, and then lash out at others in a fashion that we believe to be more socially acceptable, as a release for our entertainment (at the expense of someone else's feelings). A while back we put up a sign at the main entry of our home that says "Sarcasm free zone, leave it at the door" because we don't want to raise our daughter in an environment where it's a common or de facto form of speech. I love her more than life itself and I want her to grow up knowing that communication is for broadening our own perspectives, rather than it being a tool for scoring imaginary points and damaging another's self-esteem. We've all shut it down cold turkey and it's been a revelation, if you aren't automatically looking for barbs, you typically pay a lot more attention to what the other person is saying.

I am just a guy, I've said that many, many times here. Finances don't make a person more important, but to be completely frank, they often cause a person grow accustomed to being heard, particularly in RL situations. "That isn't fair." I agree. As an example, at a dinner party not too long ago I started to make a comment about something to do with money, to contribute to a conversation on the subject, and it was like the old EF Hutton commercials where everyone goes quiet and listens. That's bloody uncomfortable, but like anything in life, for good or ill, you get used to it. So I often don't say anything at all, to keep from disrupting a conversation. Interestingly, in the real world I constantly get asked for info or advice relating to finances, but on here I've only been contacted twice in five years.

However, I wasn't attempting to one-up Phileas, I was actually bolstering his point, but also showing that I'm also an exception to the LA vs Tech vs MBA degree debate as well, because with anyone there can be extenuating circumstances. I do make a good bit of money working as a type of "financial life coach", even though I don't have a formal education to back it up. That was going to be my follow-up but it didn't work out that way.


I have met some parents I've felt were too sarcastic with their kids, the kids not being old enough to understand sarcasm really, and this father was definitely all kinds of insecure, so there is probably something to this. Without reading these articles though I would say that there seems to be different kinds of sarcasm used in different ways. Mine was one that was mocking you in a confrontational way in defense of Phileas.

Originally Posted by Phileas
Last time I worked for somebody else, with my degree in Fine Arts, my time was being billed to clients at a rate of £225/hour, about $340. My weekly billable hours were rarely less than 50, frequently more than 60.
Originally Posted by Shaddim
Well, I have PhDs in Theology, Divinity, Comparative Religious Studies, and Humane Letters (hon). My consulting hours are from 7am-12pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays, I charge $2,000 /hr (paid to St Jude's), with a 2 hour min, and I'm booked for the next 3 months.
Are you saying this wasn't an attempt to make your qualifications seem superior to Phileas' so that your point had more weight?

BTW, whatever your respective qualifications are, I think he's right on his point that your anecdotes don't add much.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 04:59 PM
 
One of the things I like about my dog is I can be ruthlessly sarcastic with her, and not worry about the consequences.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:04 PM
 
Bess, I'm just amazed how insecure you come across.

Geez, dude, you need to stop documenting it by continuing to post things that make you looke like a pittyful person who's just out to pick a fight.

-t
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Phileas View Post
Unless you're using the Victorian definition of sarcasm, it almost always involves irony. My comment wasn't ironic, it was factual.
That's the point, we don't realize when we do it, as in:

The plural of anecdote isn't data.

Using anecdotes as a substitue for empirical data doesn't work - and you have a habit of doing just that. The barrista example you've used was designed to drive a point home, and to do so in an insulting, demeaning and ultimately pointless fashion.
Yet you also did the same in your next statement:

At my company we have a policy of not hiring MBAs. In our experience, most candidates display cookie cutter thinking, with sky-high expectations and a culture of entitlement.

We rather hire Anthropologists, Art Historians, Cooks, Creative Writers etc. Our last hire was a presenter on the Shopping Channel in his last job.

In short, we hire people who have learned to think for themselves, who are well rounded, who bring in a different point of view. Marketing isn't brain surgery, you can teach people the basics in a couple of weeks. But the ability to think, independently, that's a skill that needs to be in place.
In short, I suppose we both need to look for empirical data.

Tell me that's not a dick comment to make.
I was actually repeating what she told me herself. Although I was directing the sarcasm at someone outside the conversation, and not anyone here, it wasn't in good form.

Try that kind of stunt in a thesis defence and watch your phd go up in flames. Which is one of the reasons I take absolutely everything you say here with a huge grain of salt. The way you communicate, and argue, seems... unusual for a somebody who lays claim to multiple doctorates.
I'm sorry if you found your dissertation/thesis "defenses" to be overly combative, that could be a cultural difference. Mine were more like conversations; "Why did you choose this particular translation?" "Could you detail for us your reasoning for this attribution?" From your tone, however, I don't believe you're looking for an answer, you're just angry.
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
Bess, I'm just amazed how insecure you come across.

Geez, dude, you need to stop documenting it by continuing to post things that make you looke like a pittyful person who's just out to pick a fight.

-t

Coming from somebody who has virtually made it his MacNN career to pick fights <-- some sarcasm here
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:14 PM
 
As interesting as this whole sarcasm line of conversation is (and I don't mean that sarcastically), it seems to be taking what was an interesting conversation about education off the rails...
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I have met some parents I've felt were too sarcastic with their kids, the kids not being old enough to understand sarcasm really, and this father was definitely all kinds of insecure, so there is probably something to this. Without reading these articles though I would say that there seems to be different kinds of sarcasm used in different ways. Mine was one that was mocking you in a confrontational way in defense of Phileas.
Correct, which didn't contribute to moving the talk forward, you wanted to shut it down for your own reasons.

Are you saying this wasn't an attempt to make your qualifications seem superior to Phileas' so that your point had more weight?

BTW, whatever your respective qualifications are, I think he's right on his point that your anecdotes don't add much.
I was attempting to say what I said, it doesn't matter. There are many exceptions, some even more extraordinary (Gates once charged $250k for a 1 hour sit-down and he's never earned a degree), but they don't disprove the rule.
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
I was attempting to say what I said, it doesn't matter. There are many exceptions, some even more extraordinary (Gates once charged $250k for a 1 hour sit-down and he's never earned a degree), but they don't disprove the rule.

So you were attempting to neutralize Phileas' bringing up his credentials by bringing up your own?

It obviously didn't work very well, but it seems like we are all ready to move on...
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I like this line of thought.

I think I'll ponder that for a while. Thanks for the impulse.
Thanks. It was very uncomfortable for me to address at first, because of the realization of how much I was relying on it in almost any discussion, and how much it came across as me being a bully. All my life I've despised bullies, since I was relentlessly hounded by them when I was a kid, and to find out I was doing the same on an intellectual level was a watershed moment for me.
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
So you were attempting to neutralize Phileas' bringing up his credentials by bringing up your own?

It obviously didn't work very well, but it seems like we are all ready to move on...
Yeah, it was my mistake, partly because it was the wrong venue.
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
Yeah, it was my mistake, partly because it was the wrong venue.
Cool, I respect this in a very big way. This is a rare MacNN moment!
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
As interesting as this whole sarcasm line of conversation is (and I don't mean that sarcastically), it seems to be taking what was an interesting conversation about education off the rails...
I don't mind that at all.

See it as a facet of well-rounded discussion.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I don't mind that at all.

See it as a facet of well-rounded discussion.

I'm cool with it too, I was just anticipating that with Turtle's interjection and the potential for you to ratchet things up (simply based on the fact that few people, including myself, like defusing an argument like this), this was going to get into another cat fight.

You are an interesting dude, Shaddim, I'm glad you're here. Come clean though, you are that black retired female acrobat aren't you?
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 05:54 PM
 
Your fears aren't unfounded, sadly. But no, this would appear to be NOT one of those Sundays.
     
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Jun 9, 2013, 06:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I'm cool with it too, I was just anticipating that with Turtle's interjection and the potential for you to ratchet things up (simply based on the fact that few people, including myself, like defusing an argument like this), this was going to get into another cat fight.

You are an interesting dude, Shaddim, I'm glad you're here. Come clean though, you are that black retired female acrobat aren't you?
Nope. I'm a bald, Hispanic, stay-at-home dad.
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Jun 10, 2013, 02:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Cool, I respect this in a very big way. This is a rare MacNN moment!
I missed this.

Sh*t, now you've cycled back into being the "less annoying, more substance" besson3c, so I have to take you off ignore again.
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Jun 10, 2013, 04:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by Shaddim View Post
I missed this.

Sh*t, now you've cycled back into being the "less annoying, more substance" besson3c, so I have to take you off ignore again.

Sorry, whatever you wrote here I can't read because I have you on ignore...
     
 
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