Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Students Were Wrong in 1962, and Wrong Now

Here is a lefty professor, Jonathan Zimmerman, author of Too Hot to Handle: a Global History of Sex Education, chastising modern students for doing the opposite of the kids that issued the Port Huron Statement in 1962.

Back then students wanted to take power away from university administrators; now students want new administrative structures at the university to implement their agenda for them. In 1962,
Students needed to ‘wrest control of the educational process from the administrative bureaucracy’, The Port Huron Statement declared. Otherwise, the empty suits who ran the university would drown its emancipatory potential in a sea of bland rituals and senseless rules.
Now students want more bureaucracy in an already over-bureaucratized university.
[U]nlike their predecessors, these protesters demand more administrative control over university affairs, not less. That’s a childlike position. It’s time for them to take control of their future, instead of waiting for administrators to shape it. 
Well, I'd say that the infantilism starts with the idea that politics is good for anything except destruction. The infantilism of the 1960s was the infantilism of left-wing male activists, who wanted to create a dawn-raid-like chaos that appeals to the young male mind, with rape and pillage to follow.

The infantilism of the 2010s is the infantilism of left-wing female activists, who want a mean-girls naming and shaming of everyone not in the lefty mean-girls clique, and if anyone offends the lefty mean girls they get to go into their lefty safe-space kaffee-klatsch, no boys or townie girls allowed.

It cannot be said often enough: the university, down the centuries, has tended to be a seminary for the training of the ruling class's orthodoxy. When fictional Fred Vincy, son of a businessman in Middlemarch, went to university, it was to become a nice respectable clergyman.

But the Germans had other ideas; they made the university into a regime idea factory that would make the state strong. It was one of the seminal ideas of the last 500 years and it has strengthened the state enormously and covered university professors and administrators in money, power, and the love of beautiful women.

In the US we have adapted the German model to make young scions of the elite into "activists" who will advance the ruling-class agenda while appearing to challenge it.

The Port Huron Kids, in the age of "liberal parents, radical children," dutifully advanced the left-wing cause of their parents into new channels.

The Safe-Space Kids, in the age of diversity and hate speech, are also preparing the battle space for further left-wing advances.

But I argue that all these left-wing movements are tearing society apart. Government is Force; Politics is Violence. The end of government and politics is the silence of the grave and grass growing up in the streets. Yet human society is based on the idea of reducing force and curbing violence.

My old math teacher, Commander Bateman, used to complain that math was easy, just based on four rules. Yet everyone thinks that the complexity of the arts is easy, and the elegance of math is hard. Of course, the Commander was dead wrong. The simple elegance of math is the hardest thing in the world.

The same thing applies to capitalism and politics. All capitalism asks is that we all observe a simple principle. Find something useful, that other people will pay money for, and do it. Easy? Not at all. Grasping its simple elegance is the hardest thing in the world.

The whole effort of politics and government is to short this gentle idea with the mailed fist of force and the hurricane winds of political discord. People will be made to pay for my support and my security, or the lefty students thrilling to the fantasy du jour will know the reason why.

It is scandalous that we the people have not put an end to this madness that threatens our society and the safety of our children and the generations yet unborn.

It is even more scandalous that we have not even begun to fight.

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