Corrupting Higher Education

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“I don’t know any polite way of putting this — but he’s lying,” said professor John Ellis, president of the National Association of Scholars’ California division. Ellis was reacting to a critic’s characterization of the NAS’s damning report, “A Crisis of Competence: The Corrupting Effect of Political Activism in the University of California.”

California taxpayers spend $2.8 billion to educate the more than 230,000 students at the 10 campuses that comprise the UC system. But the report says the UC system does not help students learn how to think, but rather teaches them what to think. And what they “learn” is that they are victims — whether of racism, sexism, classism or discrimination because of sexual orientation. Liberal profs, says the report, turn the UC campuses into “a sanctuary for a narrow ideological segment of the spectrum of social and political ideas.”

Nationwide, left-wing professors vastly outnumber conservative professors in the humanities. It isn’t even close.

The report cites several studies, including political scientist Stanley Rothman’s 1999 study: “Whether the question was posed in terms of liberals versus conservatives or Democrats versus Republicans, the margins favored the former by nearly 5-to-1 in each case, and in some departments the results were overwhelming. For example, in English departments the margin was 88-to-3, and in politics 81-to-2.”

A different 2007 study, says the report, found the 5-to-1 margin between liberal versus conservative professors had become 8-to-1. Almost 20 percent of professors in social sciences and 25 percent of sociology professors self-identifies as “Marxist.”

And things are getting worse. Younger professors tend to be even more liberal than older ones. Among UC Berkeley’s associate and assistant professors, according to one study, registered Democrats outnumber registered Republicans by 49-to-1 in all departments — including sciences. When Berkeley associates and assistants replace the older professors as they retire, the extreme 8-to-1 tilt in favor of liberal profession could reach 50-to-1.

UC Berkeley professor Robert Anderson, the critic whom Ellis accuses of “lying,” called the report “short on facts, but long on innuendo and anecdotes.” Is it? The 87-page report looked at course descriptions, books assigned, faculty’s political party registration and self-identification of ideology, and student feedback.

Students are immersed in an education that emphasizes the wrongs done to minorities, women, gays and other groups. Gender, ethnic, religious and sexual orientation grievances are highlighted as representative of an imperial, racist, exploitative capitalist superpower that continues to engage in widespread racism, sexism, homophobia and worldwide domination.

“We wuz wronged” takes center stage over a basic understanding of economics, of the concept of federalism, and of the values that turned a struggling bunch of colonies into a political and economic superpower.

Indeed, the very mission statements of many departments on UC campuses stress their commitment to activism for enacting social change, or to bring about social or racial or fill-in-the-blank justice.

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  • Ken

    This is happening in California?!?! Shocking!! NOT!!! The UC system here is nothign but a festering well of Leftist bile. And this line of teaching is what is spoiling our youth and turning them into the non-thinking automotons that the Progressive Left wants!! And, it's not just at the college level. Parents should ALWAYS be aware on who and what is being taught to their children!!

  • Wordy

    Our children need to be educated to the unfortunate fact that many of their teachers are ignorant liberal bigots who are trying to insinuate their liberal prejudices into their students.

  • Chezwick

    "But the report says many students complain that alternative viewpoints are discouraged, scorned or dismissed, sometimes derisively. Students’ complaints to administrators are ignored."

    Not to mention the grade-deflation if one writes a paper that doesn't regurgitate any given professor's left-wing bile.

  • jacob

    This indoctrination starts even at grammar school, continued in high school and perfected at college…
    But it is not the rotten lefties and outright Marxists fault but that of these students parents who, instead of
    making it their business to check with a magnifying glass what is fed their children in these books, as
    reported ad nauseam, choose instead the "laissez faire, laissez passer" policy…
    My children are all professionals and way away already of such troubles but my grandchildren not and if I
    could, I would make sure the books they have to study on are free of Marxist and revisionist garbage or
    else preach for "autos da fe" on all of them if not removed by the supersages of the respective "Education
    Boards", also dominated by leftists and Marxists, in my concept the only way of rid the system of this plague

    • WilliamJamesWard

      Exactly jacob…………………..William

  • Moishe Pupick

    F., 04/13/12 common era

    As an alumnus of U.C. Berkeley, I have seen the gradual takeover by radical egalitarians there. Moral relativism
    has corrupted students there, and "diversity" means only various skin colors and definitely not any view that conflicts with The Party Line. Better that these young eggheads learn an honest trade or skill.

    • GotReason?

      Diversity = "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." You know, many texts are read by young people throughout their education, texts that introduces them to notions that require reflection on the legitimacy of the egalitarianism that is being promoted, it seems, everywhere in this country. Yet, it is hard to counteract the impact of media that pummels young people with the utopian fraud and the distractions that keep them from connecting the logic of John Locke and George Orwell and A. Tocqueville. The students are encouraged NOT to read by every area of our culture…. they are taught that feeling good is better than thinking well. They short-circuit their capacity to reason with bromides about selflessness that allow them to feel morally superior, without even seeing the discontinuity of their own thoughts.

  • 080

    There is a word for all this: politicization or politization. Politics is about power and money. When it enters into places that it doesn't belong it poisons the well. Take a look at what it has done to literature with the deconstructionists. Then it entered the arts, Hollywood, journalism,. history. It has entered "education" which it converted into indoctrination. It has corrupted religious practice:just think of Jim Jones and his liberation theology and the "People's Temple". How about T.V. "news"? How about the "Law"? Politics doesn't belong in all those places and proceeds to corrupt them.

    • GotReason?

      While I am sympathetic with your frustration, I must qualify your comments about the nature of "politics." The problem is not politics; the problem is that most people do not see politics as it should be seen – a branch of philosophy. Politics is merely the area of philosophy that attempts to determine how mankind should best live. Power is a dangerous thing in politics; which is why our brilliant – and philosophically-minded founders – designed a system of government that distributes power. It is also why men like Thomas Jefferson sought so hard to limit the centralization of power. But, power is NOT politics – power merely corrupts politics. And, as Jefferson said, "the price of freedom is eternal vigilance." Politics, however, should be discussed readily in light of values and the idea of the good (whether in structures of society or expression in the arts). This is part of what defines how mankind should live…. free and in pursuit of happiness and elevation in thought and human expression!!!

  • MrZZ

    They made no mistakes: dummies with degrees joint dummies without it in 2008 and helped the power thirsty bastards win.
    Coming November (if the elections will in fact happen) we will try our may be last chance.
    Fasten your seatbelts!

  • Infovoyeur

    You're not going to like the following? A college English teacher, I try to teach true thinking. How to discover and hear "all sides" of complex issues, know one's own biases, conclude via known, valid criteria. True, my save-the-world colleagues largely don't. BUT what if conservatives taught more courses? Would they not also champion their ideologies? And students might remain: "it's all relative." A teacher assigned Carl Cohen's book Four Systems (Marxism, Socialism, two kinds of Democracy) and helped them fight their way toward validity.No matter where they end up, just so they know their biases, goals, assumptions and admit them and truly hear (agree or not) the other side.
    –Said you might not like this. Still, I feel like a one-person Dept. or solo crusader toward something valuable…

  • Marvin E. Fox

    The takeover of the American universities by Marxists occurred while America Slept and considered a few Marxist venting their spleen on our students wouldn't bring anything but scorn to the Marxist. Scorn or not, the Marxist kept to their guns until the universities reflected revolutionary Marxist instead of American political views. Now that we know the Marxis are the professors and controllers of our universities. it is time to remove them and return our centers of learnig to teaching institutes instead of Marxist indoctrination units. I believe our "9TH AMENDMENT RIGHT TO TRUTH IN EDUCATION" should be enacted on our campuses and public schools to rid ourselves of revolutionary and/or just plain incompetent professors and teachers. That action will be done by citizens of our Republic, not government, and not people in the education system. You , whose children are suffering the marxist indoctrination, THE 9TH AMENDMENT IS YOUR RIGHT, not theirs. And, you must use it.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    As California dissolves around it's Universities and it's graduates hold degrees not worth the paper they
    are printed on, the subversive elites can take a bow on the stage of World Marxism and they get and
    A in subversion. Think on it, those old textbooks you kept will be life and light to and upcoming generation,
    a well with real water in it. They may be all of value that is left after we are gone. Homeschool, pass on
    real History and valid ideas…………………………………William

  • WilliamJamesWard

    You are so right Mister Right……………………William