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Ah, the complete disconnect between combat veterans and civilians. Some things never really change.
Welcome home, Ray. I know B.D. will be there for you, as will Walden Pond and the rest of the group.
Boy, GBT, I am a longtime devotee of Doonesbury, but Ray asking Sam "Are you into weed yet?" makes me really uncomfortable. My father was a B-29 jock during WWII, so I'm familiar with PTSD. But I hope Sam stays clean.
The July 3 strip in the recruiting office was brilliant! That captures Army recruiting perfectly. Having been in that world and had that exact same scenario happen numerous times, it is gratifying to see that the recruiter's pain is understood by someone in the civilian world. SGT Truman needs to make another appearance, where he is interviewing a wanna-be GI Joe from the PS3 generation who knows all about war from his gaming console, wants to do all the high-speed, hooah-hooah stuff -- but doesn't want to deploy. I loved those kids! From a long time reader from the days of Nixon, kudos, and thanks for the continued hard work.
The inclusion of the word "yet" in Ray's question to Sam was today's 'chuckle point'. In the words of another cartoon character, Homer Simpson: 'It's funny because it's true.'
Wow! Talk about "everything old is new again"! 30 years ago, the folks voted in with the mandate of "getting government off our backs" spent an inordinate amount of time trying to get the government into the examination room with a woman and her doctor. Nothing new under the sun, huh?
In the wake of Newsweek's recent creepy and exploitative resurrection of Diana, I come across the charming, loving, and exquisitely nuanced reprisal of Lacey Davenport in today's 10-year Flashback. Tina Brown, take note: it's possible to pay homage to the dead -- real or fictional -- with affection and grace. Thanks, GBT!
Am I allowed to like Jim? Does this make me a bad person? I don't know what it must be like to have a billion dollars. The pressure must be huge. Or a million. Or a...
The recent BLOWBACK posts remind me of something I learned at college. Don't let your classes get in the way of your education!
Re. CLINGING. It's a mistake to lump "trade schools" with inferior educational institutions. It's true that many people do not need to go to college; there are only so many "intellectuals" an economy can support. There are, however, many skilled jobs that need filling. Carpentry, mechanics, electricians, and plumbers are just a few examples. The problem is not "anti-intellectualism" (although the vitriol spewed against said intellectuals in this country is rather frightening). That vitriol is a symptom of the ignorance, bloated individual self-interest, and sense of entitlement many current voters seem to embody, especially the economically privileged. That is why the U.S. is an embarrassingly ungovernable mess.
Why go to college? So you can understand Doonesbury.
Re. WHY GO TO COLLEGE? There are institutions and students still clinging to the principles and ideals expressed by this hopeful respondent. They're underfunded and marginalized bits of flotsam on the vast polluted sea of diploma mills and trade schools that constitutes higher education in this country. Do indeed Google the question! The top hit I got was from Yahoo's "Answers" and was posted by someone who had turned to the Internet to get the answer to an essay question. Anyone who did get an education will recognize these plaints as being of great antiquity. The novelty is the degree to which anti-intellectualism has come to dominate, and reduce our nation to an ungovernable level of stupidity.
Iran just fired 17 missiles which will be capable of striking US bases in the Gulf, and Israel, with nuclear bombs when Iran has the bombs. There is little that the Red Rascal or Duke can do, any more than when J.R. Ewing on Dallas plotted to bomb Saudi oil fields to raise the price of oil.
Learning to weld in high school shop was the only part of education that earned me a nickel. But college made me the sophisticated gentleman I am today. And 18 years after high school, a BA gave me a career; nothing to do with welding.
Congresswoman Lacey Davenport has been appearing on the FLASHBACKS page recently -- in the 25 Years Ago storyline. I must say how very much I miss her. She was a wonderful character, and there has been no one to take her role.
Re. WHY GO TO COLLEGE? The problem is that when I went to an Ivy League school, they didn't have any classes in critical thinking or logical analysis. I did take a very good English class that focused on composing essays. But as for the rest of it, it's something that you're simply expected to absorb via osmosis as you go through school. If these are the true things we go to school, then perhaps the curriculum should be redesigned to focus on them more directly.
Why go to college instead of Googling? Why learn to play an instrument when you can play a CD -- so you can actually participate in life!
"Thou shalt make no machine in the likeness of the mind of man." Dune, by Frank Herbert. Now, more than ever.
"Why go to college?" Just Google "What does it mean to be a student."
Why go to college? To learn to think critically, to analyze and to compose logical arguments and to write a cohesive essay. Facts (all the facts) are necessary as evidence and to falsify hypotheses. Multiple choice exams have difficulty testing these, although written answers on tests can test these. There are ways around the problem of stealing term papers from the web. Inability to write well is due to the public schools, but these are grossly underfunded and overchallenged.