Film your Marxist Professors


Why do you think I’m proposing a less-educated society? Or conversely, why do you believe that the State-funded UK education system produces educated people?

Just because something looks like a school doesn’t necessarily mean that it delivers education. Go to anywhere in Africa to find laughable demonstrations of that.

It need not necessarily be so. In fact given my assertion that humans are mostly incompetent, success is by no means guaranteed. However, my point is that (a) the current situation is so execrably awful that it would be quite an achievement to make it any worse and (b) that pisspoor outcome is costing the country a lot of money.

You’re assuming the State actually has the power to do anything about bad parents. Bad parents will, sadly, fuck their kids up, and there’s nothing anybody can do about it. A far better course of action is to stop deliberately producing bad parents; the UK welfare system churns them out like Henry Ford made cars (cue jokes about “any colour as long as it’s black”).

Quite the opposite.

The parents can do precisely what they want right now because the State enables them to do so. It pays their rent, gives them money for drugs and beer, and pays for their legal costs when they’re caught burgling or committing ABH. If all of that were removed, they’d have a much stronger incentive to not sit around drinking or battering their kids.

Now, I concede that no other alternative would occur to them, and nobody would want to employ them. The solution would be for somebody (not necessarily the State) to provide basic education facilities for that tiny minority who wanted to avoid destitution and/or jail. For an appropriate fee, of course. On credit. Lesson 101: the good and bad uses of financial credit.

This is a fair point, but again you’re assuming the State has meaningful power to intervene now, and it really doesn’t. Yes, parents can be told to send their kids to school, but they can’t actually be forced to stop poisoning their kids’ minds against the concept of school, nor (in reality) are they prevented from taking their kids out of school for long periods, or accepting/encouraging their truancy, or turning up at the school threatening the teachers for telling Our Wayne not to set fire to the classroom.

Feral kids are already independent of their parents (albeit not in a good way) around their early teens. There are undoubtedly ways of channelling their natural desire for freedom into productive directions. They might never be academic superstars, but it would be a huge achievement simply to get them doing something other than hanging out in the park drinking and shagging. My ex-gf was a social-services worker for kids in this sort of situation and there absolutely are things that can be done, but the State isn’t interested in doing them. It wants them in school not because that’s the route to a prosperous future, but because that’s how the bricks are stacked into The Wall.

Dunno. I wasn’t checking the ranking; I was referring to research papers on the subject.


Just trying to coax you back into the fold yyy. :blush: and why would you think I’m pro- covfefe? :innocent:? Discourse better than no discourse on every Planet :smirk::heart:


That’s Randa Jarrar. She’s worth looking up if you feel like a giggle. She’s currently on leave (suspended?), but of course is untouchable as she has tenure.


Ain’t nothing like an Iron Rice Bowl to make socialism seem attractive :slight_smile:


You make the UK sound like the most wretched place on the planet. It’s definitely wretched, but 50% of that is the weather. :2cents: :cloud_with_rain: :frowning:

Did I sound like I was praising the UK system? :eek: I consider it an improvement over not having a system at all, but it’s no poster child.

I know how wretched a just-go-through-the-motions-so-we-can-keep-embezzling-foreign-aid-money type school is. But do you really think it’s just a coincidence that less economically developed countries have higher populations with zero formal education? Or that there’s no causative relationship?

Sorry, “ABH” isn’t ringing any bells for me. :idunno:

If you spend 100% of the time underwater, you simply die. If you manage to reach the surface every now and then, you’re still in danger, but you have a chance of surviving. You’re saying, in effect, if you see someone’s head underwater, don’t interfere.

You’re also taking an all-or-nothing approach to the concept of the welfare state (despite purporting not to) by conflating compulsory education (for children) with what you characterize as drug money for adults.

For an appropriate fee, of course.

I’m not going over that one again, not today anyway. :cactus:


I don’t think I have the requisite maturity level for that thread (nor sufficient ability to stay on topic), but my worthless self is nonetheless flattered by your honorable coaxing. :bowing:


It’s not so much the fact that it’s wretched that bothers me. Lots of places are wretched. What irks me is that the gov’t spends such an astounding shitload of cash on making it wretched.

There isn’t really such a thing as “no system at all”. There’s always a system. Nature abhors a vacuum and all that. I’m grumbling about value-for-money.

Of course there’s a relationship, but like most things it’s a circular one, not a unidirectional this-causes-that. Education drives a demand for education.

Notice the overlap in those bands. A failure rate of 17% is pretty damn high considering that all of those MEDCs must be spending a fair bit of GNP on State education, whereas 10% is acceptably low considering State investment in LEDCs must be close to zero. As I said earlier, neither State-funded nor privately-funded education will necessarily produce a good outcome; all I’m asserting is that State-funded systems that fall at the shitty end of that statistic (towards 17%) should either be fixed, or shut down so that the money can be spent more productively.

I have no issue at all with State education that does what it says on the tin. In fact I don’t really care what it is - education, transport, healthcare - if the State can do it better than the private sector, they’ll get my vote, and I’ll say “thank you” when I pay my taxes. It’s theoretically better to have the State running those “natural monopolies”, but governments being what they are, they invariably squander their advantage.

Actual Bodily Harm, ie., beating each other up. It’s the preferred form of entertainment among the drinking classes who can’t afford Sky TV.

No, I’m saying if you see someone’s head underwater, you’d better make damn sure you know what you’re doing, or they’ll drag you underwater too.

I’m certainly conflating the two in the sense that one brings out the worst features of the other. A child who grows up with a child-like mother (it’s almost never parents) who has her every need and whim indulged by the State has no need for education. He knows what the outcome of horsing around at school will be: a life just like his parent (singular). And to a child, a life of ease and irresponsibility probably doesn’t look too bad. It’s only when he becomes an adult, with all the means of adult fulfillment taken away from him on the basis that Nanny Knows Best, that he discovers just how bad it really is. And by then its too late.

As JP is fond of saying, life is suffering; and as other popular wags have noted, suffering expands to match the means of alleviation. In other words, if you take away from people the normal trials of life, which have satisfying and fairly well-understood solutions, they will invent different ones, which don’t.

However I’m not suggesting there should be no welfare state. In everyone’s life there are moments when one needs help and has nowhere to turn. However, the current form of the British Welfare State is dedicated to first creating and then treating a chronic “disease” … not unlike the NHS, curiously enough. Its purpose, surely, should be to head off only an acute occurrence?



Fascinating, captain.

Presumably “junior females from an ethnic minority” are completely free of all unconscious biases simply by virtue of being young, female and um, ethnically-minor.

I think if I were put in that position I’d spend as much time as possible winding the poor girl up with an endless stream of bizarre, eccentric, and sexist remarks.


Hang on. Those stats reveal that 32% of STEM and 37% of CPU academics are BME. Compared to a UK total of 13% how can that be a problem? Surely it shows that there are a disproportionately low percentage of stale pale academics, or am I misreading the figures?

As for the low percentage of women, presumably there will be similar government strike forces sending male mentors into, say, social work and nursing to stamp out the unconscious bias that must be the reason why so few men work in those areas.


I’m afraid we’re going around in circles and will soon be back to the UK and all other OECD countries spending less on healthcare than the US but getting better results, and so on. Is the UK really the world’s poster child for welfare inefficiency?

Oh, sure. Charity-as-bandaid is a system. Even anarchism, to the extent that it can exist, is a system of sorts. So why did Victorian Britain – and every other country that chose to modernize, from the Far West to the Far East – insist on statism? It couldn’t possibly be because, overall, it’s less craptastic than disorganizaed quasi-libertarianism with a super-rich oligarchy surrounded by super-sized slums. Not a chance. :cactus:

Or to put it another way, people are less likely to demand things they don’t know are possible/plausible. That doesn’t mean those things are not useful when administered by the state.

I can think of two other explanations for the overlap. Notice how they rearranged the 1st-2nd-3rd world division into a more-less division. Which countries went up a level, and which down, and does that really make a better comparison? I would look into it if I had time.

Also, education tends to be a devolved function in federal systems, so within one country you can have significant variation. For example, right now in Ontario, public school teachers are freaking out because they don’t know what they’re supposed to teach next month, because they don’t have copies lying around of the 1990’s health curriculum that the newly elected government promised to revert to (to save a vocal minority of parents from the tyranny of – among other things – letting their children learn about puberty before it happens instead of after, because they think that’s what God wants:nsfw:), which they’re now claiming they’re not actually going to revert to, but they still haven’t come up with a new version to replace it with… Meanwhile in the rest of the country, the kids may be confused, but at least the teachers know what’s going on. :whistle: Oh, and in “New France”, in addition to the usual human biology stuff that kids in most countries learn, they’ve added love to the curriculum. :heart_eyes: I’m not sure how that’s supposed to work, but the point is, no system is perfect, and there are systems within systems, and overall, societies with more state education do better than those with less.

So, the end of civilization will be caused not by giving women the vote, nor by allowing Protestants and Catholics to marry, nor by decriminalizing this or that, nor by letting postmodern philosophy be taught in universities, nor by any of those things that we used to hear would cause Armageddon, but by trying to improve the condition of those at the bottom of the heap. Got it. :roll:

Ah, the normal trials of life… I’m loathe to put words in your mouth, so I’ll just register a high degree of cynicism here and leave it at that. :slight_smile:

Today’s lesson: never treat a chronic condition when you can treat an acute one instead. :helicopter: :hospital: :helicopter: :hospital: :helicopter: :hospital: :ponder: :doh:


Probably not, but in absolute terms it does an astoundingly poor job considering the amount of money spent on it (60% of the country’s entire tax revenue on education, welfare, and health; 13%, 28% and 18% respectively). If I spent 60% of my disposable income on a gym membership and only turned up twice a month to play with my cellphone for an hour, that would be what’s commonly known as a “total waste of money”. The simple fact that welfare consumes more money than education suggests in itself that education isn’t working well.

It’s also worth pointing out that most of the people who actually drive the UK’s economic performance have paid for some or most of their education out of their own pockets (or their parents’ pockets). Of those who went through a State school and left at 16, 5-10% (estimates vary - I’ve no idea why) leave with no qualifications at all, and another 30-40% leave with nothing of any practical value. Their contribution to the economy and society is, at best, zero. They are cut adrift in an exceedingly complex world, and understand less about it than the average 15th-century peasant would have done.

Because that’s what delivers the biggest benefits to those at the top of the heap. Third-world politicians are masters of the art, although they’re generally not smart enough to understand that if the common man is earning more, there’s more money to steal.

You don’t seriously believe that the government cares what happens to the poor, do you? As long as the plebs aren’t working their burglary rounds in the politicians’ exclusive residential neighbourhoods, the goals of the State have been achieved.

I’d agree with that, but it isn’t really “in other words”. It’s a completely different statement.

I’d be the first to argue that national statistics should be treated with a healthy dose of suspicion. And you’re quite right that devolution of responsibility results in a massive variation of service quality and “systems within systems” inside any given country. However the reason for this (at least in the UK) is fairly transparent:

  1. Schools in good neighbourhoods don’t have any problem delivering education - to the extent that they’re bothered about such mundane goals. In the main, the kids aren’t a bunch of little monsters. They’re moderately receptive, they can sit still for more than five minutes, and they have some motivation to do well. However, even here, the quality of service is poor. There is very little emphasis on actually learning things and a whole lot of drivel about self-esteem and the like (the lessons on ‘love’ would be a prime example).

  2. The schools on the estate don’t have a hope in hell. While there are a small minority of kids who want to achieve, they’re mercilessly destroyed by the majority who don’t. It’s like trying to educate a barrel of rats. It’s a fundamentally losing proposition.

My complaint mainly concerns 2). Now in a sense, these schools are both part of “the same system”, but the system fails to recognise the unique subcultures. They have completely different needs. The little bastards on the estate can’t benefit from learning about trigonometry or chemistry. They need lessons on how to be human beings, and in that context putting ‘love’ on the curriculum probably isn’t entirely stupid. The average 15-year-old girl on a council estate thinks that as long as her boyfriend doesn’t kick the shit out of her more than once a week, that proves he loves her.

  • Something must be done!
  • This is something.
  • Something has been done!

These arguments go round in circles because we both have the same ultimate goal in mind, but disagreements over how to achieve it. It’s a very modern view that trying to do something is what matters most; actually achieving what you set out to do is of secondary importance.

Consider this: who were the people in your life who made you what you are today (the good bits, I mean :wink: ). What role did the State play in your personal development? If the State had spent more money on you and commandeered more of your time, would you be a better person?

Absolutely. Glad you understood that one :slight_smile:

On the offchance you’re being sarcastic, what would you rather have: a diet programme than prevents you getting diabetes, or guaranteed access to drugs after you get diabetes?

Incidentally, about 25% of the NHS budget ($32B) is spent on the treatment of diabetes, obesity, and heart disease, conditions which are basically caused by disastrous government advice on diet and lifestyle. A wonderful example of vertical integration, in fact: create your own customers, and then sell them products.


That’s true in North America as well. Meanwhile in continental Europe, university tuition is basically free, so obviously they’re in the midst of a socialist death spiral, with millions of refugees pouring over the border… Wait, what? They’re pouring in, not out? :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

They don’t need to be altruistic to realize that raising standards for the country as a whole is also beneficial to themselves. Not everyone wants to live in a gated community, not everyone wants to send Junior to a school that has a giant bubble over the sports field so that the kids can play outside without shortening their lifespans, and so on…

What? I was talking about Quebec! They have it in the UK too? :hushed: Oh, my.

Wow, in the space of about a year (I mean since the last time we went over this), the Problem With State Schools has gone from a minority of students with borderline personality disorder destroying any chance of the majority getting an education to the majority of students being subhuman vermin (“on the estate”! :astonished:) destroying the hopes of a minority of hypothetical achievers.

I wonder what happened in the meantime.

So what, then? You can’t ship them to the colonies anymore. They just go and turn themselves into a prosperous society when you do that! :no_no:

Bring back the gulags? :idunno:

Oh, this again. Comrade Finsky is, I think, trying to say aren’t you glad you went to private school and therefore got a superior education? Aren’t you horrified at how you would have turned out if you’d gone to a state school with all the plebs? or something to that effect. I can’t give that a proper answer without confirming or denying biographical details, but I will say I find this line of thought amusing.

Off Chance? What, like Community Chest? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

What would you rather have: a fish soup kitchen for the destitute, or a free education in how to fish?