On Education as a Market.

Imagine  that the world was limited to one college course. It can be equated to the “market” as defined in the economic sense. There are the rich- the A students, the middle class- the B through C students, the poor- the D students, and those living below the poverty line- the F students.

Now imagine that the professor, who in this case stands in the place of the government, decides that she doesn’t want any of her students to be failing. So she organizes mandatory study groups each comprised of one rich, two middle class and one either poor or destitute student. They are required to study for the next test together, because that’s the only way that she feels the grades of the D and F students can be raised.

After the tests are all graded, the professor is baffled by the results. It seems that those who previously had As made Bs, those who had Bs or Cs stayed about the same, and those with Ds or Fs improved as much as a full letter grade. So she brings her top students in and questions them about it.

“You all made better grades on your last tests than you did on this one. What happened?”, she asks.
“We spent so much time trying to teach the failing students things that we already understood that we didn’t really get a chance to study what we needed to,” they responded.

So she takes this into consideration when she decides on the study groups for the next test. Obviously, since the groups didn’t work out well last time, she needed to organize them differently. So she uses the same general structure, but changes the people in the groups.

This is the failure of liberalism. Being wrong, being proven wrong, and then continuing to act on the principles that have been proven wrong.

This is based on what my Public Policy Leadership 101 professor has decided to do for our next test. Instead of actually teaching us the lessons, as is her job, she has decided that the kind of study groups described above is the best way to raise the grades of those doing poorly.

When she told me about the groups this morning, I immediately felt the urge to laugh, for my mind had jumped to Atlas Shrugged. She didn’t understand why I was smiling, but went ahead and said that she had decided to put one woman in each group, for our class has a disproportionately high number of men to women, and that she feels that “the men tend to have a general ‘let them fail’ attitude towards those not scoring as well”, and that she thinks having women in the groups will introduce a measure of compassionate understanding into the groups.

She obviously did not know to whom she was speaking.

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3 Responses to “On Education as a Market.”

  1. Curt Wilson Says:

    i love this. it’s absolutely stupid on the professor’s part, but you have turned it into quite the brilliant metaphor.

  2. JayTravis1964 Says:

    Perhaps you should suggest to her that you are “entitled” to an “A” for the course without having to show up any more or take any more tests? After all, if she is so fond of demonstrating the effects of the social engineering dogma of liberalism, then she should simply choose to reallocate someone else’s “A” for the mere demonstration of her establishing her authority to do so to the others in her class.

    After all if she, as the “government” (and more specifically, the TYPE of government she is representing in this) in this little scenario, truly believes that it is her moral responsibility to tamper with the individual students’ results by inflicting HER opinion of how the statistics of the group “should” result, then there is no logical reason why she should refuse to arbitrarily pick and choose who gets her favor. She is ALREADY doing so, after all. It is merely a matter of whose agenda she is promoting, and WHY.

    If she proclaims to have a problem with the idea of this, then ask her what the moral difference is in meddling with the grades of the class for the benefit of your agenda, as opposed to her doing so for the benefit of her personal agenda and the promotion of her beliefs regarding who is to succeed and who is to be held down in some manner. The goal is being promoted as equality, but the reality is that her goal in the role she is playing, is authoritarian power. It is no different than every other dictatorship in the history of humanity, and is much truer to basic human nature than any abstract concept of equality of outcomes. The only difference is that as someone who recognizes the dynamic of the situation, she should also be willing to accept that YOU are therefore in the minority who “should” be promoted, in order to avoid having you make a public issue over the matter in the rest of the class (and the administration), thereby inciting “rebellion” against the State- HER state. Therefore YOU establish your position in the little social experiment of hers, and your own degree of power within it.

    You may not get an “A” in the class, but you will have gained more wisdom about the nature of power, force and oppression instead of partaking in the collectivist game. And having the courage to call her on it the only REAL lesson of value that her class has to offer in the real world.

    • alyxwi Says:

      Excellent idea. The most terrible part is that she honestly doesn’t see anything wrong with what she’s doing.

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