Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Who needs four degrees, or even one, when we've got the Don from Downunder?

(Above: bring back the intermediate certificate, bring it back now!)

It should be way past the spring season, with the torpor of summer and the Xmas holidays well on the way, but truth to tell, there's never any way to keep the loons quiet on the pond.

There's Crikey gone bereft of its senses, publishing Adam Creighton, a "research fellow" at The Centre for Independent Studies, blathering away in Who needs four uni degrees or even one for that matter?

As if to prove his point, Creighton reveals by way of rant over rational argument that education can be a complete waste of time for some.

The resulting column could only be construed as a prime example of trolling for comments, but sadly for Crikey, they'd only managed to drum up 44 comments at time of writing.

It turns out that said Adam boasts a Master of Philosophy in the dismal science of economics, gained at Balliol College at Oxford, and paid for by way of a Commonwealth scholarship, so he knows whereof he speaks.

What a dismal waste of public funding. Has the man got some kind of misguided education fetish?

Why he could have been down at factory at 4 am to start work at mill, after healthy breakfast of gravel, instead of cultivating a false sense of social superiority (and we all know how Oxford dons are completly up themselves).

Well we presume it's the same man. The one who, according to his online CV, wrote for the finance and the arts pages of The Economist, and who has written for The Spectator, and even co-authored a chapter for Oxford University Press on funded retirement systems. (here he is).

Clearly what's most needed in the hive is plenty of worker bees, so the drones can go on droning.

Ah there's nothing like yearning for the good old Victorian days, when the peasants knew their place, and the lumpenproletariat lumped and the working class worked, and refined Oxford dons could concentrate on matters of high finance and high matters of y'arts.

Past generations got by perfectly well with three or four years of high school. And apart from the proliferation of computers and the internet (familiarity with which develops outside the classroom), how much has the range of available jobs really changed?

Yes indeed, please do not apply to the CIS, it's full. Instead go straight to street sweeping, or if liberally inclined, basket weaving.

The school leaving age should be dropped back to 12, and a whole sub-class of native Australians contracted out to make Nike shoes and iPads for the Oxford don class.

Anything rather than let the dumb and the useless and the hopeless waste money on education and imagine there might be some point to them becoming an informed citizen, when the fix is already in and the drones run the show.

What a complete waste of funds, what a capricious misuse of productivity it would be to cultivate delusional thinking in the lumpens. You there, get back into place, and keep that assembly line moving.

Besides, education is a proven complete waste of time:

... educational standards, at least the ones that matter to employers, have not improved commensurately. Australian productivity continues to decline. Indeed, some would argue that educational standards today are lower than they were 100 years ago, when hard work, discipline, and memorisation were the only tools in trade.

Yes, all the sheep need is a little rote learning and a little discipline, a little bit of spit and sweat and toil.

What else is required, especially when crafting generalisations designed to send people into a frenzy?

Universities are offering remedial writing courses for recent school leavers, who couldn’t parse a sentence in English to save themselves. The mathematical content of introductory economics and science courses, for example, has declined.

Indeed. And Mr. Creighton trots out an overwhelming array of data to confirm his innate intuitions and suspicions, and no doubt if you look elsewhere than his column, you might be able to find them.

You see, the very best way to call for a dropping of educational standards is to deplore a decline in educational standards ...

Why there's no one left who can parse ancient Greek, let alone Latin, and what's the point of teaching climate science to dumb bunnies, when they're so much better off listening to the wise words of the CIS?

Frankly the wheels fell off the west when they decided to ban kids under nine from working in textile factories, and proposed that nine to thirteen year olds might benefit from two hours of education a day.

To what avail? Have you seen the gibberish to be found on the internet? Who can make sense of it? Who can make sense of Adam Creighton?

Shame, Crikey, shame, and not a mention in Pure Poison, how Crikey has joined the ranks of the trolls, and gone punch-drunk like The Punch by featuring a glib, superficial rant.

Meanwhile, in another corner of the pond, we've only just caught up with Terry Barnes' splendid proposal that it's Abbott's time to occupy high moral ground.

When an arts reviewer - allowed for leave the assembly line for a two minute pee break - was invited to review the column, she suggested that rarely had readers been given the opportunity to read such quality slapstick since the Three Stooges retired.

How about this immortal line?

Cynics may scoff, but those who know Abbott also know that his claim that he would not have done as Gillard did is genuine

You there, stop pulling the other one. And that was followed by this:

By maintaining dignity in contrast to Labor's unscrupulousness, and adjusting quickly to its strategic consequences ...

Dr.No, the antipodean Vladimir Putin downunder, always ready to pose action man style, will maintain his dignity?

Well it sent the Fairfax punters into a frenzy - the amount of comments completely did over that desiccated coconut Gerard Henderson moaning about missing a flight - and it almost made us miss out - so many tears from the laughter - on the grand news of Rupert Murdoch, aka the Don from Downunder, doing his standover routine, as explained by Charlotte Church in Singer waived $160,000 Murdoch fee 'for good press' (warning, forced ad at other end of link):

Charlotte Church has told how she agreed to waive a £100,000 ($160,000) fee for singing at Rupert Murdoch's wedding in exchange for a promise of future favourable coverage in his papers.

Talk about a deal with the devil.

"Despite my teenage business head screaming, 'think how many Tamagotchis you could buy!', I was pressured into taking the latter option," she said in a witness statement.

Tamagotchis! Those were the days, at least until she realised she'd actually bought a Rupertgotchi, and by golly he and his rags gotchied her good.

Wait, there's more. By golly a whole line of hoppy toads and slithering snakes have snuck out of the Murdoch closet, as you can discover by reading The Guardian's live blogging of the event, here.

Hush, hush sweet Charlotte, there have been so many who followed you with whinges and moans about chairman Rupert and his mob, that you've already dropped down the list of people with grievances, as a multitude of other sordid stories crowd into the UK inquiry.

But never mind, you've still got a pretty good story, an immense comfort in old age, what with you as a thirteen year old being paid heaps to sing at Murdoch's 1999 marriage to Wendi Deng, and instead of cash in paw, you got the protection of the Don from Downunder:

Who was to know that the Don from Downunder would do you down, with the Sun carrying a clock counting down to your 16th birthday, along with the sexual innuendo that now you were then of legal age for some naughty hokey pokey.

Credit where credit is due, the News of the World topped that with the news that:

"Superstar Charlotte Church's mum tried to kill herself because her husband is a love rat hooked on cocaine and three in a bed orgies."

Oops, we didn't see where this was heading, because now we have to recant.

Clearly Adam Creighton is right.

There's not much need for a higher level of education in the western world, not while China's getting into the game, and especially not while Murdoch's minions deliver all the news that's fit to print and even fitter to read.

(Below: a question we should all be asking as supercilious education snobs proliferate around the land, and to what avail).


  1. Remember lads: the faster you are with those bins between the kerb and the back of the truck, the fitter you'll be for footy season.

    If you can't stand the smell there's always ice-carting.

  2. If "only the “right” kinds of kids should be kept on past year 10" then what do we do with the "left" kinds of kids? Keep them dumb I suppose so that they can be controlled by the intelligent "Abbotts" and "Creightons" of this world? As George Bernard Shaw said: "When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty." The problem is that Tony Abbott is not ashamed.

  3. Sounds like Adam Creighton is getting a bit worried about job competition from younger, harder and smarter Ph.Ds....


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