The soul has greater need of the ideal than the real for it is by the real that we exist, it is by the ideal that we live

Monday, August 2, 2010

Up to no good

The ability to utilize our educational resources has increased exponentially this past decade with the growth of the internet.  Unfortunately, it's being slowly taken over by the corporations and we're losing its original intent.  Not that anyone will really notice.  We're all corporate bots who believe everything the drones tell us to. 

"Feel lucky you have a job." 


"Don't think for yourself."

Not a problem.

"It's not necessary for you to do original work just copy it off the internet and hand it in to your teachers."

Well, sure!

All this insistence on lowering our standards repeatedly will result in generations having to learn all over again that they must learn to exercise their creativity.  Possibly to learn that they even have creativity at all. It's much to our shame.

This morning on there's an article regarding this very subject, and some of the comments are not only disturbing, they're disheartening as a teacher.  From students arriving at the writing center at college to ask not how to properly attribute a quote, but to ask how to change the color of the text from blue to black after they copied and pasted.  To the outright and sadly honest "...who cares?"

We all should, that's who.

We boast how we're the best, how we're America and we're the leaders of the free world.  Leaders to what exactly?  We have lowered all standards so that our students arrive at the job with an expectation they'll start at 45k, and that they deserve it.  That they deserve an A for meeting the requirements of a class.

Yes, that's barely a livable wage these days, but many people never get to that level.  I'd guess a majority of Americans live in the 35-40k range most of their working lives. That's marginally better than the 80's when 25k was good money.

Of course, Cars cost twice what they did in 1980, housing also doubled,  the price of food, well no wonder we're the fattest nation on earth, we can only afford the processed junk the corporations shove down our throats. 

Ideally, to start making it again, and to be able to pay my bills again I have to either give up my apartment, and find something that costs about half, or I have to give up my car, file bankruptcy and go back to driving the kind of car I haven't driven in 25 years.  Junk. There are no other options for me at this point.

This mind you, is the situation for a person who bought into the existing system.  Who went out and got not one, not two, but four degrees.  To quote Edward Lewis, "I went all the way." 

And I find at this late point in life that what is important is not education, because the common denominators who run the show are not only clueless about how to utilize an educated person, they're not the least bit interested in finding out how to utilize me, or anyone else with an advanced degree. No what's important is what I can do, not what I can't.

So, rather than continue to play the game I'm losing I have to learn to appreciate the Third World country I live in. I have to remember that I love growing my own vegetables, and that I love being outdoors, and that driving a new car isn't ALL THAT. That sitting here and writing and going into the studio and making pots all day and getting on a horse and just heading out for the morning or riding my bike with no destination or health goal in mind are the things I really need to do.  Material things never mattered to me before when did they become the be all end all?

I also have to rememberwhat's really important in life.  Others.

Ok, I probably should have made sure you were sitting down before I said that, so as to prevent you from getting the vapors, which are all to easily acquired in this heat.  But it's true and I've lost sight of it. 

My almost decade-long struggle to obtain a job in education, a system which I can't imagine I ever wanted to be a part of, needs to come to an end.  It'll never happen, and I need to face that.

Perhaps..and it's a big perhaps,  I'll be able to teach PART TIME if I move to another city and perhaps not. 
And I shouldn't be that concerned about it.  I need to remember that I got all this fancy book learnin' for me, not for the system.

All the things that I CAN do should be what I celebrate instead of what I can't because I'm not the right bean for whatever educational salad they're tossing these days.  It doesn't mean I'm less than because I don't get to play.  I was always the last one chosen for the teams anyway.  Why would I think the rest of life would be any different.

We're not celebrating creativity, and that's not a good thing.  We're celebrating business, capitalism and the ability to make money. 

Truthfully, I was happier when I was a starving artist and I think I need to return to my roots to get happy again.   I'm losing touch with the very people who fostered my creativity and supported me in any endeavor. Surely I can find a way to make a living and celebrate the things and people important to me. 

Utilizing my creativity starts at home I guess.

As Isabelle Steers said:  "I'm so sick and tired of myself."

Oh I can just see misbehavior in the future. 


And so it goes:

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