Monday, March 26, 2012

Reading WaPo: pull up a chair and have yourself a slice of outrageous misrepresentation

The article in the Washington Post: where to begin?

My first thought was "Is this WaPo or the Wall Street Journal, which regularly hates on higher education?"

Yes, the author has a lot of fancy pants titles and a big investment portfolio, but anybody who makes as many incorrect assertions and factual errors as he does deserves the title of being--well, let's say "misinformed."
  • Those salaries? Not at my university, at least not in the humanities. Not even close.
  • What is with the fallacious argument that professors "only" work when they are standing in front of a class? Has this person ever been a faculty member? As I've argued here before, that's like saying that a farmer only works for two weeks a year during harvest and has a cushy job the rest of the time.
  • What's with the bait and switch about rising university costs being solely attributable to faculty salaries and rising compensation? WHAT rising compensation? We haven't had raises in years, and a lot of states have made faculty take furloughs.
  • What about the part that athletics, administration, fancy new gyms, and the rest have played in rising costs, or the gutting of public universities, some of which are down some 60% in the amount of funding they get from the state?
  • What about the rising prices for the various journal databases that we have to use to produce the research that will get us tenured, promoted, and possibly a raise, if there are ever raises again?
  • This wouldn't have anything to do with deflecting attention from any company that the Washington Post owns, would it?
I have the feeling that the red flag of higher education bashing is once again being waved to deflect attention from the real issues: defunding of universities, rampant adjunctification and exploitation of the same, and the motives of extremely well-paid corporate types with academic connections who make fallacious arguments when they ought to know better.


Historiann said...

Ya think?

Ink said...

Brava, Undine!

undine said...


Thanks, Ink!