Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Yer all Big Liberals Over There!

Not that many of us aren't liberal, here at the university -- but we aren't, in fact, all liberals; and those of us who are liberal aren't liberal because we're sheep, you know. We're liberal because we've read widely and deeply and have thought about things, have evaluate ideas and have decided to be liberals.

Others of us -- like the guy in the office next to mine, for instance, who runs the campus rifle club, and some of the folks over in economics and a few in History -- have read widely and deeply and have thought about things, have evaluate ideas and have decided to be conservative, or libertarian, or socialist, or whatever.

But the folks at American Enterprise Institute aren't, of course, much interested in what's actually happening on campuses in America. They're interested in what they can sell. And George Will, among others, is perfectly happy to help them sell it, citing their study in his column in the Washington Post recently, (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A15606-2004Nov26.html) as well as agreeing with Lakoff, the guy who thinks we just need more professors on campus who favor two-parent families (because, you know, most of us liberals hate two-parent families) and think non-Western literature is crap.

But here's a rebuttal of their flawed study that does an excellent job of showing exactly why George Will is an idiot for buying this soap job:
( http://www.prospect.org/print-friendly/print/V13/23/plissner-m.html)

Well, he's not an idiot. I shouldn't say that. He's a patsy. He wants to believe that the Evil Liberals are Taking Over the Universities.

So he's happy to read a study that confirms his Worldview.

Now why he wants to believe that, I don't know.

Maybe because it makes him feel better about his memories of all the professors he was not smarter than in school? Maybe because he feels inferior about his relative lack of graduate degrees?

Who knows. Whatever it is, it doesn't excuse this sort of sloppy thinking.

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