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(25-Jun-2006 at 07:30)


What is the point of education ?

What is the point of education ? The wife and me have been arguing about it and need to ask the audience - you.

My point of view: Eduction for children is great for everyone. Educating the populace is great because you end up with workers able to complete more skilled jobs. As such they can generate more wealth for themselves and their company. In turn they can cycle more money through the economy generating more jobs & opportunites for others. However, by sacrificing real-world business knowledge for the arts in state education children leave school not knowing how to interact with business correctly or even balance their own budgets (see massive rise in debt & bankruptcies in recent times).

Therefore education should be tailored (but not exclusivly) towards business and the current gaps in the workforce.

Wifes point of view: State education should be more encompasing than that. Educating children should be given a well rounded education not limited and focused to a specfic goal. By limiting education in such a way you not only deny poorer children access to the arts (who cannot afford private education for such subjects) but limit the possibabilty of producing the next great artist or historian e.t.c.

What do you guys think ?

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
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#1  
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(25-Jun-2006 at 07:47)


Education serves far more than just economic purposes. It makes you grow as a human being. I'm not the type who goes on rambling about spirituality and stuff, not at all! Education is far more than economics though.

Think about something like literature. We all have had to read books for school. Doesn't it - in retrospect - feel good to have studied Shakespeare?

Myself I study Philosophy and also Archaeology at a Dutch University. I can hardly argue these studies are in my main economic interest. I'd better go and study Law or Biology or something to make money! My studies are fun though, very interesting.
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(25-Jun-2006 at 07:54)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Apeiron:
Education serves far more than just economic purposes. It makes you grow as a human being. I'm not the type who goes on rambling about spirituality and stuff, not at all! Education is far more than economics though.

Think about something like literature. We all have had to read books for school. Doesn't it - in retrospect - feel good to have studied Shakespeare?
Actually... no.

Quote:
Myself I study Philosophy and also Archaeology at a Dutch University. I can hardly argue these studies are in my main economic interest. I'd better go and study Law or Biology or something to make money! My studies are fun though, very interesting.
Sure - but why should the state pay for you to have - in your own words - fun ? Surely the state should be trying to make you a productive citizen.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#3  
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(Posted as Lodewijk)
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(25-Jun-2006 at 08:06)


You don't think studying Philosophy and Archaeology is productive? Considering that he might go on to a career as a researcher, or in academia, or a post-grad degree of some kind, I would say it's money well-spent. There is no course at most universities that I would consider a waste of money subsidising.

Edit;

Quote:
Actually... no.
You don't think Shakespeare is worth studying?

Is birth always a fall?
Do angels have wings? Can men fly?

Last edited by Lodewijk, 25-Jun-2006 at 08:06.
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(Posted as Belili)
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(25-Jun-2006 at 08:35)


Quote:
There is no course at most universities that I would consider a waste of money subsidising.
You obviously haven't been to a state college here in America

Language study of Klingon... Elvish....

Ballroom dancing....

Basketweiving...

Some of the colleges with big sports (Florida State, Michigan, Ohio State) have courses in American football... in which football players are given tests on "How many points is a feild goal worth" and receive a 4.0 GPA to remain eligible.

Higher education here is far from perfect.

Education to me is the first step in progressing society. To be able to create and innovate... you must know what has already been created or innovated. Thus the only ways to contribute to society are to be educated or to be controlled by someone who is educated.

My question to you Grash (Devil's advocate)... if education provides so many people with the skills to fill higher end jobs, wouldn't that cause problems with the workforce of the lower end jobs? If everyone is a doctor, who will mow my lawn?

Belili : Sexy :: Naz : Warning Points
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(25-Jun-2006 at 08:57)


As Apeiron said, education is far more than economics. I share his opinion that it helps you grow as a human being.

I've seen people who don't know who the hell is Shakespeare, who think Nelson Mandela is a boxer, who think that the Berlin wall was built in 1933rd.

Of course that education is really important to teach people moral principles, how to manage resources and to progress in the economic field, but in the same time it's something much, much more.

At the moment I study English, politics, sociology and philosophy. I'll probably loose one of those next year because it's hard for me to keep up, but that's not important now. When I was younger they made us study everything. Math, geography, biology. Man, I hated biology. It won't help me any in my future job, but I'm glad I know at least some basic things, you know.
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(25-Jun-2006 at 09:00)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Lodewijk:
You don't think studying Philosophy and Archaeology is productive? Considering that he might go on to a career as a researcher, or in academia, or a post-grad degree of some kind, I would say it's money well-spent. There is no course at most universities that I would consider a waste of money subsidising.
Depends how you define productive of course - what your goal for the end product is. Both those subjects do not contribute to the economy nor people's well being. Have no problem people studying them - as long as they don't do it on the taxpayers account. Unless of course there is some fiscal benefit available for the tax payer.

The careers you mentioned are a non-job in most cases. Sure they are jobs - but exactly what purpose do they serve ? Does the average man on the street really benefit from a philosphic academic ? I would say no - his money is being taken and being given nothing in return.

Quote:
You don't think Shakespeare is worth studying?
I am 28 years old and have been in white collar employement for 7 years. I can't think of a single time since I have studied it aged 14 - 16 that it has proved useful to me.

Originally Posted by Belili:
Education to me is the first step in progressing society. To be able to create and innovate... you must know what has already been created or innovated. Thus the only ways to contribute to society are to be educated or to be controlled by someone who is educated.

My question to you Grash (Devil's advocate)... if education provides so many people with the skills to fill higher end jobs, wouldn't that cause problems with the workforce of the lower end jobs? If everyone is a doctor, who will mow my lawn?
Of course - am not saying that everyone should be educated to be a doctor. Clearly you need a 'bottom heavy' workforce. What I am saying is that it is not very helpful or the guy who mows lawns for a living to know the parts of a flower or when the Mongals ruled China. He should know how to complete tax returns, balance his personal finance, understand that credit cards may be really bad idea for him... e.t.c.

EDIT:

Originally Posted by Ian Out:
As Apeiron said, education is far more than economics. I share his opinion that it helps you grow as a human being.

I've seen people who don't know who the hell is Shakespeare, who think Nelson Mandela is a boxer, who think that the Berlin wall was built in 1933rd.
So what ? Does that stop them functioning in society ? Why should it be the states responsabilty to ensure children 'grow as human beings' ? Can't think of a task more suited to parents.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors

Last edited by Grashnak, 25-Jun-2006 at 09:06.
#7  
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(25-Jun-2006 at 09:07)


Depends on what education we are talking about, school from grade 1-12, or post-secondary? As I really believe that the primary and secondary education system shouldn't only focus on training kids to be workers. That should be an aspect of it, but I think another huge role within the system should be teaching the kids how to be good citizens, as well as to be able to critically think about all areas of their lives, and not just their job.

Within post-secondary this should (in most cases) be aimed towards getting a job, however solely for economic benefit rarely happens and shouldn't be the only thing. Most people need to have a job that they love, so studying something that you love is a major part of it. If you are in the system for business that is great, but if you are interested in the social sciences, fine arts, etc. careers are still open from these degrees as well, so the economy will still benefit as long as they get a job from there degree.
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(Posted as Lodewijk)
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(25-Jun-2006 at 09:19)


Quote:
Depends how you define productive of course - what your goal for the end product is. Both those subjects do not contribute to the economy nor people's well being. Have no problem people studying them - as long as they don't do it on the taxpayers account. Unless of course there is some fiscal benefit available for the tax payer.

The careers you mentioned are a non-job in most cases. Sure they are jobs - but exactly what purpose do they serve ? Does the average man on the street really benefit from a philosphic academic ? I would say no - his money is being taken and being given nothing in return.
Firstly, you've misused the term fiscal. Secondly, of course academics contribute to people's well-being. They write papers, they analyse texts, they enrich our lives. They produce the essays which augment our knowledge of the arts which have been passed down, they research the ruins which help us discover who we are and where we have come from.

To describe this as a non-job is terribly short-sighted. If you view members of society as automatons whose sole purpose is to be Fitter, Happier, more Productive, then that is frankly quite disturbing. Promoting intellectual stagnation and retarding individual self-exploration is not only bizarre, but dangerous.

Talking about the average man on the street, you think the average person person benefits from yet another investment banker (*cough*)? Yet another IT Data Cleanser? You think Joe Bloggs could care about a Database Administrator?

It's all a matter of subjectivity. Society loses its soul, any sense of greater significance, if we eliminate the arts. Hell, this message board you're posting on is constructed by someone who derives minimal economic profit from it, based on an online game. Go figure.

Quote:
I am 28 years old and have been in white collar employement for 7 years. I can't think of a single time since I have studied it aged 14 - 16 that it has proved useful to me.
You've never thought about the world outside of your job and the day-to-day minutiae of life? You've never thought about love, life, and religion? If Shakespeare, as the pinnacle of literature, can be extended to symbolise artistic expression, then it comes in useful to us every single day. Instead of focussing so much on teaching people 'how to survive,' did you stop to consider what the point of survival would be without the literature, music, academic pursuits and paintings that make life worth living?

Quote:
Of course - am not saying that everyone should be educated to be a doctor. Clearly you need a 'bottom heavy' workforce. What I am saying is that it is not very helpful or the guy who mows lawns for a living to know the parts of a flower or when the Mongals ruled China. He should know how to complete tax returns, balance his personal finance, understand that credit cards may be really bad idea for him... e.t.c.
I don't disagree that those skills are important. But that doesn't mean that taking a course in history or philosophy even if you do end up as a gardener is a waste of money. Education is partly about extending oneself intellectually and emotionally - gardeners and plumbers deserve that chance as well.

Quote:
So what ? Does that stop them functioning in society ? Why should it be the states responsabilty to ensure children 'grow as human beings' ? Can't think of a task more suited to parents.
Under your vision for society, parents wouldn't do any of those things since they wouldn't have learned about anything like that in the education system either. They would have focussed more on 'useful' things.

Is birth always a fall?
Do angels have wings? Can men fly?

Last edited by Lodewijk, 25-Jun-2006 at 09:21.
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(25-Jun-2006 at 09:45)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Lodewijk:
Firstly, you've misused the term fiscal. Secondly, of course academics contribute to people's well-being. They write papers, they analyse texts, they enrich our lives. They produce the essays which augment our knowledge of the arts which have been passed down, they research the ruins which help us discover who we are and where we have come from.
Sure - but enriching our lives ? I don't think so. To academics, to people whom are genuinly interested in their beginnings (and I include myself in that group) it is great. If people wish to do it in their own time that's fine, however I don't see that it should come at the expense of the tax payer. The vast majority of people really don't care which dynasty a piece of pottery came from and what that tells us about peoples lives at the time it was made, all they really care about is the cost of goods on the market.

Quote:
To describe this as a non-job is terribly short-sighted. If you view members of society as automatons whose sole purpose is to be Fitter, Happier, more Productive, then that is frankly quite disturbing.
Please don't put words in to my mouth - dosn't do much for your argument. I havn't said anything remotly close to this.

Quote:
Promoting intellectual stagnation and retarding individual self-exploration is not only bizarre, but dangerous.
Then it is you that is being shortsighted. If people are more geared towards business then they will encourage research & development into new areas of science in return for increased sales & market share. Take a look at the machine you are using to speak to forumers on - that has not come from the hands of state funded research but from a corporation.

Examine the new-age religions, they are come from a gap in the market & do very well for themselves. They all encourage self exploration.

The great works of litreature & art have not come from state educated humans.


Quote:
Talking about the average man on the street, you think the average person person benefits from yet another investment banker (*cough*)? Yet another IT Data Cleanser? You think Joe Bloggs could care about a Database Administrator?
Please see my response to Belli earlier.

Quote:
It's all a matter of subjectivity. Society loses its soul, any sense of greater significance, if we eliminate the arts. Hell, this message board you're posting on is constructed by someone who derives minimal economic profit from it, based on an online game. Go figure.
I never said eminate the arts, don't be so melodramatic. I am saying I don't think state education should fund for all children to know who Leonardo Da Vinci was. Let's be honest here - most kids don't care until it becomes controversial, "The Da Vanci Code"

Quote:
You've never thought about the world outside of your job and the day-to-day minutiae of life? You've never thought about love, life, and religion? If Shakespeare, as the pinnacle of literature, can be extended to symbolise artistic expression, then it comes in useful to us every single day. Instead of focussing so much on teaching people 'how to survive,' did you stop to consider what the point of survival would be without the literature, music, academic pursuits and paintings that make life worth living?
Of course I have thought about those things - in my own spare time. Which is what I am saying everyone should be free to do. Not forced to do in state education.

Please try to keep in mind my argument - not go on a tangent claiming I wasnt to wreck all the arts forevermore.

Quote:
I don't disagree that those skills are important. But that doesn't mean that taking a course in history or philosophy even if you do end up as a gardener is a waste of money. Education is partly about extending oneself intellectually and emotionally - gardeners and plumbers deserve that chance as well.
Sure - as long as they do it out of their own pocket. Also, exactly how is that gardener going to improve his gardening abilies and give back to society the money he used to take the course ? If he does out out of his own back pocket - no problems then at all.

Quote:
Under your vision for society, parents wouldn't do any of those things since they wouldn't have learned about anything like that in the education system either. They would have focussed more on 'useful' things.
Rubbish - parents installied morality long before there was state education. Or do you believe all the workign class used to be savages ?

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
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(Posted as Uzgadra)
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(25-Jun-2006 at 10:04)


Educations goal is to give people the skills they need in life dont get tied into thinking education is only about the class room any knowledge that is instilled in us is worthwhile its all about how we use it

. R.I.P. Millie you took our hearts with you
. 26th Feb 2002- 4th June 2007
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(Posted as Lodewijk)
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(25-Jun-2006 at 10:26)


Quote:
Sure - but enriching our lives ? I don't think so. To academics, to people whom are genuinly interested in their beginnings (and I include myself in that group) it is great. If people wish to do it in their own time that's fine, however I don't see that it should come at the expense of the tax payer. The vast majority of people really don't care which dynasty a piece of pottery came from and what that tells us about peoples lives at the time it was made, all they really care about is the cost of goods on the market.
There isn't much point in argument if you say 'people care about this' and 'all they really care about...' Divining some kind of general consensus among the world's population that 'the vast majority' care about this or that isn't going to get you anywhere. I can think of many people I have met and I know intimately who have studied the arts and been employed as archaeological researchers who have been lauded and cherished by their peers as contributing to society.

You keep constructing this utterly bankrupt demarcation between 'own time' and 'expense of the tax payer.' It's a false separation. People don't have the 'own time' or 'money' to go and study Roman ruins in Vindobona, they need grants and teams and equipment to do so. You keep complaining that I'm mischaracterising your views, but fundamentally, I am not. Essentially, you believe that the greater artistic pursuits of the human race must be something that we need to do 'in our own time,' while knowing full well that this is impossible.

If the vast majority of people 'didn't care,' why do you suppose National Geographic even exists? Why are documentaries made? Thankfully, the reality is that a significant number of people do have the desire to learn about themselves.

Quote:
Please don't put words in to my mouth - dosn't do much for your argument. I havn't said anything remotly close to this.
The thrust of your argument runs - 'don't give state funds to arts subjects.' It is self-evident that the denial of state funding will eliminate academia as a sizeable entity capable of producing works of value on a regular basis. The absence of state-funding will make it financially impossible to sustain any kind of career in drama, painting, music or historical journalistic pursuit.

If you can't see that, then I apologise for calling you a supporter of automatons - I'll call you naive, or accuse you of wilful self-delusion.

Quote:
Then it is you that is being shortsighted. If people are more geared towards business then they will encourage research & development into new areas of science in return for increased sales & market share. Take a look at the machine you are using to speak to forumers on - that has not come from the hands of state funded research but from a corporation.

Examine the new-age religions, they are come from a gap in the market & do very well for themselves. They all encourage self exploration.

The great works of litreature & art have not come from state educated humans.
So you're saying that T.S. Eliot didn't in fact attend university? That we should instead cross our fingers and hope that the next work of art comes from someone who can somehow financially survive in the society of today and still have enough 'own time' to compose the next Brothers Karamazov?

You talk about my machine being mass-produced, but I would have nothing to talk about were it not for my partially-state funded education in literature, in drama, in 'the arts.'

As for the new-age religions, I'm completely lost in any sort of point you were trying to make there. After all, religions don't strike me as entirely economically driven. Which new-age religions where you referring to?

Scientology?

Quote:
Please see my response to Belli earlier.
I saw it, and it doesn't apply to what I asked you. My question concerned the 'average man' you are apparently so concerned about. If you keep contending that 'the lawn mower' only needs to know the practical minutiae of life, then you are denying the opportunity for that lawn mower to read Shakespeare, to perform a Beckett play in state-funded secondary education.

Life is meaningless without the arts, the greater pursuits. You wax lyrical about 'own time' without realising that such a nebulous, magical concept doesn't actually exist in practice. You think people are going to compose the next Bhagavad Gita without a state-funded course in literary analysis?

Quote:
I never said eminate the arts, don't be so melodramatic. I am saying I don't think state education should fund for all children to know who Leonardo Da Vinci was. Let's be honest here - most kids don't care until it becomes controversial, "The Da Vanci Code"
I am hardly being melodramatic, but I suppose it does come off that way contrapuntal to your own emotionally sterile view of state-funded education. Of course children should learn who Da Vinci was. Of course they should know what he invented, the paintings he created, everything about the guy. Why? Because this is the meaning of education. To learn about the world around us, the people on whose shoulders we stand, the reason why we wake up everyday and do whatever it is we do.

Again, saying that 'learn it in your own time' is not only impractical, but philosophically untenable. School is precisely the time to learn about these things. Tried reading Cicero on your own, without a teacher to analyse it with you? Attempted to divine the literary flourishes of Rushdie or Marquez without the benefit of an education atmosphere? It's impossible.

Either you can't see it or choose not to see it, but eliminating state-funded education of the arts will indeed, 'eliminate the arts.'

Quote:
Of course I have thought about those things - in my own spare time. Which is what I am saying everyone should be free to do. Not forced to do in state education.

Please try to keep in mind my argument - not go on a tangent claiming I wasnt to wreck all the arts forevermore.
One of the major sources of stimulation of thoughts such as these is the literature we study in school, the philsophy we are introduced to. I wouldn't even consider something like Pascal's Wager in depth if I hadn't learned it at school, I wouldn't think about things like post-modernism if I hadn't done it in Year 12. At my partially state-funded school.

The arts will indeed be wrecked forevermore if you suck out of the succour of state-funding.

Quote:
Sure - as long as they do it out of their own pocket. Also, exactly how is that gardener going to improve his gardening abilies and give back to society the money he used to take the course ? If he does out out of his own back pocket - no problems then at all.
He repays society by being a more insightful and knowledgeable human being. The measure of a person's net social benefit is not purely their productivity or marginal economic product. It shouldn't be left to someone's 'back pocket' to bear the brunt of self-extension and discovery about the nature of the world. The government has a responsibility to ensure that the gardener is given every oppurtunity to intellectually and emotionally extend himself, as a human being.

Quote:
Rubbish - parents installied morality long before there was state education. Or do you believe all the workign class used to be savages ?
Morality is learned from a variety of sources. My morality doesn't come from purely what my parents told me was right or wrong. I read Othello, to provoke self-reflection about jealousy and the possibilities of a character like Iago. I study Latin and Roman history to consider a character like Sulla and his actions, I read Suetonius and Anaximander to reflect on what has occurred throughout antiquity.

You think merely parental inculcation could possibly communicate as multitudinous, as prismatic a world-view as the one such as the one achieved through state-funded education in the fine arts?

Is birth always a fall?
Do angels have wings? Can men fly?

Last edited by Lodewijk, 25-Jun-2006 at 10:28.
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(25-Jun-2006 at 11:18)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Lodewijk:
There isn't much point in argument if you say 'people care about this' and 'all they really care about...' Divining some kind of general consensus among the world's population that 'the vast majority' care about this or that isn't going to get you anywhere. I can think of many people I have met and I know intimately who have studied the arts and been employed as archaeological researchers who have been lauded and cherished by their peers as contributing to society.
This shows exactly the problem. 'Lauded by their peers' - great, you still havn't explained why the average bricklayer should stump for it. He gets nothing tangable in return. He neither asks nor wants it. It does not make his life richer or happier knowing that someone off his back is probing deeper into the nature of slavery in Roman times.

Quote:
You keep constructing this utterly bankrupt demarcation between 'own time' and 'expense of the tax payer.' It's a false separation. People don't have the 'own time' or 'money' to go and study Roman ruins in Vindobona, they need grants and teams and equipment to do so.
Wrong subject. State schools do not fund expiditions and digs.

Quote:
You keep complaining that I'm mischaracterising your views, but fundamentally, I am not. Essentially, you believe that the greater artistic pursuits of the human race must be something that we need to do 'in our own time,' while knowing full well that this is impossible.
Digs are expensive, don't disagree with that. If money is the problem, then sell the discovered artifacts to collectors. If that still dosn't raise enough money, and there is no one rich enough willing to stump up the readies, then I have to ask can really be descirbed as a good return on the general tax payers cash.

Quote:
If the vast majority of people 'didn't care,' why do you suppose National Geographic even exists? Why are documentaries made? Thankfully, the reality is that a significant number of people do have the desire to learn about themselves.
Tell me - what percentage of people get such magazines ? Are they in the vast majority ? I suspect not. For those that are - they are doing this in their own time are they not ? National Geographic is not state funded media is it ? Oh look - a great example of why state funding is not required.

Quote:
The thrust of your argument runs - 'don't give state funds to arts subjects.' It is self-evident that the denial of state funding will eliminate academia as a sizeable entity capable of producing works of value on a regular basis. The absence of state-funding will make it financially impossible to sustain any kind of career in drama, painting, music or historical journalistic pursuit.
The arts would take a terrible blow if state funding was removed. Don't disagree. Just because a thing can be done, does not mean it should.

You argue that it would be impossible to sustain ? I think not. The theatre & the publishing industry have done very well indeed long before state education. Painting was once a means to earn a living, no more - dosn't mean it should be artifically kept alive. It has been superseeded by moving pictures & the camera.

Quote:
If you can't see that, then I apologise for calling you a supporter of automatons - I'll call you naive, or accuse you of wilful self-delusion.
Removing state funding does from schools would not make humans automatons.

Quote:
So you're saying that T.S. Eliot didn't in fact attend university?
Wahey ! An single example ! Wahoo ! All that money was well spent after all... Come on I have heard many weak arguments on this board but that was terrible.

Quote:
That we should instead cross our fingers and hope that the next work of art comes from someone who can somehow financially survive in the society of today and still have enough 'own time' to compose the next Brothers Karamazov?
Or if business finds it profitable will fund it itself. None of the 'great' composers were self funded yet they still managed. Besides since Operas & theatre are dying due to lack of interest, why should those who do not appricate it fund it ?

Quote:
You talk about my machine being mass-produced, but I would have nothing to talk about were it not for my partially-state funded education in literature, in drama, in 'the arts.'
No although that is a good point about it being mass produced. Your machine is the culmination of quite literally millions of hours of reasearch & development, none of which was state funded.

Quote:
As for the new-age religions, I'm completely lost in any sort of point you were trying to make there. After all, religions don't strike me as entirely economically driven. Which new-age religions where you referring to?

Scientology?
Scientology is one example - they have done very well for themselves & despite what we both probably think of the 'faith' they have helped a very large number of people find 'inner-peace' despite how flawed we both probably see it. I was thinking of other snake oil sales such as crystals, aliens, aromatherapy e.t.c. - none of which are state funded but have done very well in terms of jobs & money as well as providing security & enlightenment to many.

Quote:
I saw it, and it doesn't apply to what I asked you. My question concerned the 'average man' you are apparently so concerned about. If you keep contending that 'the lawn mower' only needs to know the practical minutiae of life, then you are denying the opportunity for that lawn mower to read Shakespeare, to perform a Beckett play in state-funded secondary education.
Correct - that's exactly what I am saying. However that is not what you asked me. You asked if we needed additional people in certian jobs, not what arts the lawn mower could study in school.

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Life is meaningless without the arts, the greater pursuits. You wax lyrical about 'own time' without realising that such a nebulous, magical concept doesn't actually exist in practice.
You have exactly zero free time ? I pity you. Do you work in a Nike factory ? Do they know you are using your free time to debate here ?

I learned most of my knowledge about European history & geography in the last couple of years - why ? Because it interested me & I liked to learn about it.

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You think people are going to compose the next Bhagavad Gita without a state-funded course in literary analysis?
The origionals writers did ok.. Can't see why it could not happen again.

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I am hardly being melodramatic, but I suppose it does come off that way contrapuntal to your own emotionally sterile view of state-funded education. Of course children should learn who Da Vinci was. Of course they should know what he invented, the paintings he created, everything about the guy. Why? Because this is the meaning of education.
Circular reasoning: they should learn because that is the reason for learning.

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Again, saying that 'learn it in your own time' is not only impractical, but philosophically untenable. School is precisely the time to learn about these things. Tried reading Cicero on your own, without a teacher to analyse it with you? Attempted to divine the literary flourishes of Rushdie or Marquez without the benefit of an education atmosphere? It's impossible.
Then if it is so unreachable without outside aid - is it really any use to the average person ? I know you hate the term average person but they are the people coughing for it.

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Either you can't see it or choose not to see it, but eliminating state-funded education of the arts will indeed, 'eliminate the arts.'
Rubbish - it existed long before state funding.

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One of the major sources of stimulation of thoughts such as these is the literature we study in school, the philsophy we are introduced to. I wouldn't even consider something like Pascal's Wager in depth if I hadn't learned it at school, I wouldn't think about things like post-modernism if I hadn't done it in Year 12. At my partially state-funded school.

The arts will indeed be wrecked forevermore if you suck out of the succour of state-funding.
Then how did it survive before state funding ? How did it live and propogate through time ?

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He repays society by being a more insightful and knowledgeable human being. The measure of a person's net social benefit is not purely their productivity or marginal economic product. It shouldn't be left to someone's 'back pocket' to bear the brunt of self-extension and discovery about the nature of the world.
Great - I want to learn more about the Burgundians. Please give me 500 per term for my course.

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The government has a responsibility to ensure that the gardener is given every oppurtunity to intellectually and emotionally extend himself, as a human being.
Why ? Why is it the governments responsability ? If the gardener wants to do it - let him/her. If he/she dosn't then don't force him/her wasting their time & our money.

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Morality is learned from a variety of sources. My morality doesn't come from purely what my parents told me was right or wrong. I read Othello, to provoke self-reflection about jealousy and the possibilities of a character like Iago. I study Latin and Roman history to consider a character like Sulla and his actions, I read Suetonius and Anaximander to reflect on what has occurred throughout antiquity.
Good for you - for those that didn't - are they all immoral ?

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You think merely parental inculcation could possibly communicate as multitudinous, as prismatic a world-view as the one such as the one achieved through state-funded education in the fine arts?
Probably not - is that level of understanding required by every single person in the state system ? Is that required for a large percentage ? What about a small percentage ? Or even any percent ? No. This is a luxury, not a requirement to live as a well adjusted person in society.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#13  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Grashnak Add Grashnak to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
(Posted as Lodewijk)
Posts: 1871/2241
Donated $4.04
(25-Jun-2006 at 12:21)


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This shows exactly the problem. 'Lauded by their peers' - great, you still havn't explained why the average bricklayer should stump for it. He gets nothing tangable in return. He neither asks nor wants it. It does not make his life richer or happier knowing that someone off his back is probing deeper into the nature of slavery in Roman times.
So, does the 'average bricklayer' care that his money is being used to fund the study of economics, or commerce, or science? Do you think friend bricklayer could care less even if people were doing the 'productive' things you so cherish?

Your argument isn't an argument against the arts, it's an argument against the redistribution of wealth as a whole. If you asked the bricklayer what he should stump for, he'd tell you - nothing.

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Wrong subject. State schools do not fund expiditions and digs.
Universities, with state-funding, do indeed help fund expeditions and digs. And they provide research grants, and they put on plays. Oh, they also subsidise the purchase of musicla instruments, they purchase the rights to publish and store essays, and so on.

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Digs are expensive, don't disagree with that. If money is the problem, then sell the discovered artifacts to collectors. If that still dosn't raise enough money, and there is no one rich enough willing to stump up the readies, then I have to ask can really be descirbed as a good return on the general tax payers cash.
You do realise that 'marginal social benefit' and 'marginal social cost' are concepts which exist in modern economic theory, don't you? Societal benefit and cost cannot be measured purely in dollar terms. Besides, 'collectors' shouldn't be given artefacts - they belong in museums. Funded by the state. With employees who studied it at state-funded schools.

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Tell me - what percentage of people get such magazines ? Are they in the vast majority ? I suspect not. For those that are - they are doing this in their own time are they not ? National Geographic is not state funded media is it ? Oh look - a great example of why state funding is not required.
You miss the point. If they never learnt about these things in school, you think people are going to magically pick up a fine arts magazine and get straight into it? To take, for example, a fine arts magazine, there's no way you can suddenly pick one up and realise that it's your life passion. Realistically, you learn about the great artists at school, you seek to extend yourself.

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You argue that it would be impossible to sustain ? I think not. The theatre & the publishing industry have done very well indeed long before state education. Painting was once a means to earn a living, no more - dosn't mean it should be artifically kept alive. It has been superseeded by moving pictures & the camera.
What's the point in arguing with you if you think painting should be left by the wayside? Your measure of 'artificial' is frankly appalling. We still have great artists who produce so much that enriches our lives, from the highest to the lowest earners of society. No reasonable economist would ever suggest completely eliminating funding to such an endeavour.

Incidentally, you really need to talk to theatre owners if you think the industry can survive without government funding. Most theatres would dive straight under, not to mention the fact that they wouldn't actually have any actors under your Huxley-esque sterility.

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Removing state funding does from schools would not make humans automatons.
Going to school everyday without English and Religion and Philsophy would make us no better than robots, tailored towards your bizarre notion of productivity at the cost of social benefit and education-based individual betterment.

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Wahey ! An single example ! Wahoo ! All that money was well spent after all... Come on I have heard many weak arguments on this board but that was terrible.
I thought you would realise that he was a representation of artists who have experienced the benefits of state-funded arts education, but evidently my expectations of your reasoning capabilities were wildly overblown. I do apologise. I shall provide a few more examples to remedy my enormous error of judgment.

T.S. Eliot, Salman Rushdie, James Joyce, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Arundhati Roy, Harper Lee, Ernest Hemingway, Henry Miller, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Steinbeck, John Betjeman, Daniel Defoe, Oscar Wilde, C.S. Forester, William Golding, William Faulkner, George Orwell, Robert Graves, Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene, D.H. Lawrence...

By my count, that's another 20. If you want me to provide a list of every great author, painter, or musician who has attended a partially state funded school or university, I'll probably break my wrists trying to keep up with the thousands of names. And since you clearly cannot comprehend the notion that trying to assign a monetary benefit to the value brought by an artist is a fool's errand, I shan't bother.

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Or if business finds it profitable will fund it itself. None of the 'great' composers were self funded yet they still managed. Besides since Operas & theatre are dying due to lack of interest, why should those who do not appricate it fund it ?
Well, because we no longer have feudalist patrons to support authors. We no longer have a class system whereby nobility have enough time to compose works without a fear for survival. Because it is not right to have an environment where writers and painters are forced to subsist on minimal income (like many of the great artists in history) while composing their work.

As for your argument, again, it's an argument against any redistribution of income whatsoever. Why should I pay taxes to pay for someone who's lost their job? Why should I pay to build a bridge which I'll never use? Why should I pay to support the apple industry if I don't like apples?

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No although that is a good point about it being mass produced. Your machine is the culmination of quite literally millions of hours of reasearch & development, none of which was state funded.
You miss the point. I would have considerably less use for the machine if I hadn't studied English and the arts at school.

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Scientology is one example - they have done very well for themselves & despite what we both probably think of the 'faith' they have helped a very large number of people find 'inner-peace' despite how flawed we both probably see it. I was thinking of other snake oil sales such as crystals, aliens, aromatherapy e.t.c. - none of which are state funded but have done very well in terms of jobs & money as well as providing security & enlightenment to many.
I don't know whether I should call your argument hilarious or pathetic. Probably the former, considering you accused me of providing a 'terrible' argument

You know you're clutching at straws when you are hailing scientologists and quacks as a shining example of net economic benefit to society. In fact, hail pyramid schemes! After all, con artists and quacks are clearly the absolute zenith of society - damn those hippy arts students, those non-productive layabouts.

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You have exactly zero free time ? I pity you. Do you work in a Nike factory ? Do they know you are using your free time to debate here ?

I learned most of my knowledge about European history & geography in the last couple of years - why ? Because it interested me & I liked to learn about it.
Sorry, were you trying to be funny? I spend my time here because of the people I've met, the interesting debates. I also do most of my work for uni while I'm online. I have next to no free time to read for pleasure anymore, what with work, uni, and socialising. Most of my literary experience was in school, reading texts for the purposes of English or History and so on. People wouldn't get that opportunity under your system.

As for the actual point, good for you. Not everyone has the kind of free time you do to individually research things they're interested in. You must have a lot of free time if you can spend it researching

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Correct - that's exactly what I am saying. However that is not what you asked me. You asked if we needed additional people in certian jobs, not what arts the lawn mower could study in school.
But that's the point. When you start quantifying the effect things have on people ('He doesn't NEED to know this or that'), then you are dehumanising them. If you think the only thing the state should be responsible for is improving the lawn-mowers ability to mow lawns, then you are in effect saying that the state should view its citizens as merely productive inputs and nothing more than that.

Automatons, perhaps.

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Then if it is so unreachable without outside aid - is it really any use to the average person ? I know you hate the term average person but they are the people coughing for it.
In a word, yes. I would like to think that appreciating literature in school is a worthwhile pursuit. It seems that you think the only thing which should be done in school is anything which directly increases productivity.

You know, you haven't considered the possibility that the arts in school actually increase a person's ability to do something. The more literature you read, the greater your command of language becomes. The more you reflect on concepts, the more your mind is tested with respect to problem-solving. The more you participate in drama and music, the greater your powers of elocution, expression, and creativity. So even if you do view the state's attitude to people as one of sterile marginal product, it still doesn't justify pulling state funding from the arts.

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Rubbish - it existed long before state funding.
This argument isn't heading anywhere. That statement makes no account for the fact that, well, times change. We don't have the Medicis to patronise the arts for no reason whatsoever (even our so-called philanthropists can't reach as many people). We don't have a situation where we have a landed gentry or nobility (well...) who are not only the only people who can afford to actually appreciate the arts, but the only ones who can even read or write.

What we have is a world where everyone can read and write, where the next great author or artist can come from anywhere. We have an environment where almost every great author in the modern age has either attended a partially state-funded school, or a partially state-funded university. You stop that now, and you see how quickly we descend into Mustapha Mond and a world of emotionally sterile alienation.

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Great - I want to learn more about the Burgundians. Please give me 500 per term for my course.
I don't understand what's so strange about this. It's 500 pounds well spent.

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Why ? Why is it the governments responsability ? If the gardener wants to do it - let him/her. If he/she dosn't then don't force him/her wasting their time & our money.
For the same reason that the government funds national parks, pollution controls, beaches, and animal conservation. Because of *social benefit* instead of just the dollar. What you view as a waste, I view as bettering the citizens of a nation in a significant emotional fashion. The gardener should be allowed to experience the oppurtunity to study the arts in school, on government money, because that person may not always be a gardener. And even if they were, the government has a responsibility to its citizens to improve their quality of life - even on an individual level.

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Good for you - for those that didn't - are they all immoral ?
They may well be. If a child grew up listening to only their parents' view of what is correct, what then? What if the parent is a racist or a sexist? What then? What if the parent teaches the child that all Jews are evil?

A child who is not given the opportunity to read the great works of literature will be denied an enormous avenue of finding out who they are. If you prefer people to have the emotional range of a teaspoon, more's the pity.

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Probably not - is that level of understanding required by every single person in the state system ? Is that required for a large percentage ? What about a small percentage ? Or even any percent ? No. This is a luxury, not a requirement to live as a well adjusted person in society.
Oh, so there's some kind of critical mass past which point emotional self-discovery becomes a luxury? You want a world like that - good for you. If you want depthlessness and mass-produced humanity, enjoy your bizarre post-apocalyptic vision.

Is birth always a fall?
Do angels have wings? Can men fly?
#14  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Happy Sid Add Happy Sid to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 1470/2050
Donated $50.00
(25-Jun-2006 at 13:38)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Lodewijk:
So, does the 'average bricklayer' care that his money is being used to fund the study of economics, or commerce, or science? Do you think friend bricklayer could care less even if people were doing the 'productive' things you so cherish?
No - but it does ' It does not make his life richer or happier knowing that someone ' in this case is looking for ways to make him/her wealthier.

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Your argument isn't an argument against the arts, it's an argument against the redistribution of wealth as a whole. If you asked the bricklayer what he should stump for, he'd tell you - nothing.
If you then asked him, do you want your roads manitained, your hospital to continue e.t.c. he/she would most probably say yes. Ask him the same question about a new exciting piece of music in the classic style - I doubt he/she or most people in fact would be so keen on paying for it.

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Universities, with state-funding, do indeed help fund expeditions and digs. And they provide research grants, and they put on plays. Oh, they also subsidise the purchase of musicla instruments, they purchase the rights to publish and store essays, and so on.
Sure - however we are talking about state funded schools.

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You do realise that 'marginal social benefit' and 'marginal social cost' are concepts which exist in modern economic theory, don't you?
No - I'll be honest I don't. Could you enlighten me ?

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Societal benefit and cost cannot be measured purely in dollar terms. Besides, 'collectors' shouldn't be given artefacts - they belong in museums.
Museams were started by collectors. However, we are going off topic here.

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Funded by the state. With employees who studied it at state-funded schools.
I would agree that artifacts are acrhitecture need to be preserved by the state if no one else - but that is outside the scope of this thread - state funded education.

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You miss the point. If they never learnt about these things in school, you think people are going to magically pick up a fine arts magazine and get straight into it? To take, for example, a fine arts magazine, there's no way you can suddenly pick one up and realise that it's your life passion.
My lifes passion is computers, yet I when I went to school didn't have a single lesson on it. I spent exactly 0 hours studying medieval European history, yet I have a passion about learning it know.

I didn't learn about the fine arts either - dosn't mean I couldn't if I chose to do so.

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Realistically, you learn about the great artists at school, you seek to extend yourself.
Example ?

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What's the point in arguing with you if you think painting should be left by the wayside? Your measure of 'artificial' is frankly appalling. We still have great artists who produce so much that enriches our lives, from the highest to the lowest earners of society. No reasonable economist would ever suggest completely eliminating funding to such an endeavour.
And those that are succesful are rewarded, by commerce. I wouldn't suggest elminating funding, only to state education. If an artist (of whatever flavour) can bring a great product to the market - then they will be rewarded.

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Incidentally, you really need to talk to theatre owners if you think the industry can survive without government funding. Most theatres would dive straight under, not to mention the fact that they wouldn't actually have any actors under your Huxley-esque sterility.
If you say so. Don't see how that improves the situation though. When most familes would rather go to the cinema to see the latest blockbuster why should they pay through taxation for the local threatre they visit once a year to see the great work of art known as 'Panto'.

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Going to school everyday without English and Religion and Philsophy would make us no better than robots, tailored towards your bizarre notion of productivity at the cost of social benefit and education-based individual betterment.
So everyone in the past who had no education was a robot ? Don't be so melodramatic.

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I thought you would realise that he was a representation of artists who have experienced the benefits of state-funded arts education, but evidently my expectations of your reasoning capabilities were wildly overblown. I do apologise. I shall provide a few more examples to remedy my enormous error of judgment.

T.S. Eliot, Salman Rushdie, James Joyce, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Arundhati Roy, Harper Lee, Ernest Hemingway, Henry Miller, F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Steinbeck, John Betjeman, Daniel Defoe, Oscar Wilde, C.S. Forester, William Golding, William Faulkner, George Orwell, Robert Graves, Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene, D.H. Lawrence...

By my count, that's another 20. If you want me to provide a list of every great author, painter, or musician who has attended a partially state funded school or university, I'll probably break my wrists trying to keep up with the thousands of names.
Ok - I admit I was being facetious.

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And since you clearly cannot comprehend the notion that trying to assign a monetary benefit to the value brought by an artist is a fool's errand, I shan't bother.
Not through taxation I can't no. I can enjoy a good work of art as much as the next person. I just don't see why it should be as part of every childs education.

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Well, because we no longer have feudalist patrons to support authors. We no longer have a class system whereby nobility have enough time to compose works without a fear for survival. Because it is not right to have an environment where writers and painters are forced to subsist on minimal income (like many of the great artists in history) while composing their work.

As for your argument, again, it's an argument against any redistribution of income whatsoever. Why should I pay taxes to pay for someone who's lost their job? Why should I pay to build a bridge which I'll never use? Why should I pay to support the apple industry if I don't like apples?
Unemployement insurance was not brought in for altrusitic reasons, it was brought in as it was shown to be benefical to the economy, same goes for bridges. Agricultural subsidies - I agree with you, they are wrong.

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You miss the point. I would have considerably less use for the machine if I hadn't studied English and the arts at school.
I havn't studied either beyond the very basics and yet I make much use of it. However, at least you concede the point that business & commerce can drive innovation.

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I don't know whether I should call your argument hilarious or pathetic. Probably the former, considering you accused me of providing a 'terrible' argument

You know you're clutching at straws when you are hailing scientologists and quacks as a shining example of net economic benefit to society. In fact, hail pyramid schemes! After all, con artists and quacks are clearly the absolute zenith of society - damn those hippy arts students, those non-productive layabouts.
Yes - that's right, shining example were my very words weren't they ! I could fall over myself enough to praise L. Ron Hubbard... or perhaps not. Getting back to what we were actually talking about:

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Promoting intellectual stagnation and retarding individual self-exploration is not only bizarre, but dangerous.
Both of which have thriving industries that fall completly outside what is taught in state schools. Removing the arts will not as far as I can see change this.

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Sorry, were you trying to be funny? I spend my time here because of the people I've met, the interesting debates. I also do most of my work for uni while I'm online. I have next to no free time to read for pleasure anymore, what with work, uni, and socialising.
You are a great example of what can happen then. You are both in the world of work and education.

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Most of my literary experience was in school, reading texts for the purposes of English or History and so on. People wouldn't get that opportunity under your system.
No - that is correct. What will you do to repay the tax payer their investment in your education ?

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As for the actual point, good for you. Not everyone has the kind of free time you do to individually research things they're interested in. You must have a lot of free time if you can spend it researching
Of course - like most of the working world I do a 7.5 hour day, 1 hour commute. If something really intreasts you, make the time. No need to spend every hour at home in front of the telly.

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But that's the point. When you start quantifying the effect things have on people ('He doesn't NEED to know this or that'), then you are dehumanising them. If you think the only thing the state should be responsible for is improving the lawn-mowers ability to mow lawns, then you are in effect saying that the state should view its citizens as merely productive inputs and nothing more than that.

Automatons, perhaps.
No I think the state has to treat the populace as a group, not individuals with individual feelings and desires. Government would have to be huge to go to this level. I trust the government to take money from me through taxation and spend it where it will do the most good - whilst ensuring at the same time it will not be wasted on things that will not even indirectly benefit me.

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In a word, yes. I would like to think that appreciating literature in school is a worthwhile pursuit. It seems that you think the only thing which should be done in school is anything which directly increases productivity.
Correct - that is the point of the thread.

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You know, you haven't considered the possibility that the arts in school actually increase a person's ability to do something. The more literature you read, the greater your command of language becomes. The more you reflect on concepts, the more your mind is tested with respect to problem-solving. The more you participate in drama and music, the greater your powers of elocution, expression, and creativity. So even if you do view the state's attitude to people as one of sterile marginal product, it still doesn't justify pulling state funding from the arts.
If any unbiased study could show that this was worth the investment in time & resources, then I would change my position.

Quote:
This argument isn't heading anywhere. That statement makes no account for the fact that, well, times change. We don't have the Medicis to patronise the arts for no reason whatsoever (even our so-called philanthropists can't reach as many people). We don't have a situation where we have a landed gentry or nobility (well...) who are not only the only people who can afford to actually appreciate the arts, but the only ones who can even read or write.

What we have is a world where everyone can read and write, where the next great author or artist can come from anywhere. We have an environment where almost every great author in the modern age has either attended a partially state-funded school, or a partially state-funded university. You stop that now, and you see how quickly we descend into Mustapha Mond and a world of emotionally sterile alienation.
I doubt it - but can do no more than speculate.

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I don't understand what's so strange about this. It's 500 pounds well spent.
Great ! Give me 500 then please.

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For the same reason that the government funds national parks, pollution controls, beaches, and animal conservation. Because of *social benefit* instead of just the dollar. What you view as a waste, I view as bettering the citizens of a nation in a significant emotional fashion.
I don't disagree - concrete jungles have been shown to make unhappy workers. As such there is a tangible return on investment.

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The gardener should be allowed to experience the oppurtunity to study the arts in school, on government money, because that person may not always be a gardener. And even if they were, the government has a responsibility to its citizens to improve their quality of life - even on an individual level.
Fundamentally disagree - governments job is not to improve peoples lives on an individual basis. No government does as such a task would monumentally difficult. It does try to improve the wealth & happiness of the population as a whole. It should not spend money in the vauge hope of making some kids make connections to the arts.

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They may well be. If a child grew up listening to only their parents' view of what is correct, what then? What if the parent is a racist or a sexist? What then? What if the parent teaches the child that all Jews are evil?
And reading Romeo & Julliet is going to change their views ? I think not. Perhaps studying litreature beyond 18 might help, but let's face it kids who become warped by parents extreamist view are not going to have politics changed by studying about the Romans.

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A child who is not given the opportunity to read the great works of literature will be denied an enormous avenue of finding out who they are. If you prefer people to have the emotional range of a teaspoon, more's the pity.
Again - rubbish, humans develop emotions & the ability to express themsevles well before the mass education.

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Oh, so there's some kind of critical mass past which point emotional self-discovery becomes a luxury? You want a world like that - good for you. If you want depthlessness and mass-produced humanity, enjoy your bizarre post-apocalyptic vision.
No - Let's go back to what was actually said:

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You think merely parental inculcation could possibly communicate as multitudinous, as prismatic a world-view as the one such as the one achieved through state-funded education in the fine arts?
If you believe parents can only ever produce "depthlessness and mass-produced humanity" then you should never become a parent.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#15  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Grashnak Add Grashnak to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
(Posted as Lodewijk)
Posts: 1872/2241
Donated $4.04
(25-Jun-2006 at 14:06)


I had a long reply prepared, but there's very little point. It's just a total divergence of opinion. You think that state funds should be used only the creation of further wealth, but then note that unemployment subsidies are good for the economy (not sure how that follows, but anyway). Social Benefit and Cost are very simple - i.e., society benefits from positive externalities which cannot be monetarily quantified. And that's the gist of my argument - the state should be responsible for the provision of such positive externalities. You can't seem to consider that the enjoyment and stimulation provided by the arts is a positive externality which comes from subsidised theatres, painters, and writers. I think that ultimately I'm contented by the fact that your quasi-economic theories of life aren't likely to be implemented any time soon.

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If any unbiased study could show that this was worth the investment in time & resources, then I would change my position.
Ask any employer if they want communication and language skills in employees, and I'm sure you'll get an answer in the affirmative. I'm not sure what kind of study you're looking before, but it's fairly self-evident that studying literature and communicating in dramatic and musical settings is positively related to creativity and expression.

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If you believe parents can only ever produce "depthlessness and mass-produced humanity" then you should never become a parent.
I feel more sorry for your children if you want to strip their education of any literary or musical or dramatic pursuit. I pity the child who doesn't get to read Shakespeare or play the clarinet because it doesn't add to their productivity as a member of society. I mean, they don't need to know all that stuff, because clearly you can teach them everything they need to know about the world, and they can go to school and become happy and effective workers. Oh, and pick up the odd magazine now and then to stimulate their minds, in 'their own time.'

Quite the idyll.

Is birth always a fall?
Do angels have wings? Can men fly?
#16  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Happy Sid Add Happy Sid to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 3996/5486
Donated $11.20
(25-Jun-2006 at 14:18)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Grashnak:
Therefore education should be tailored (but not exclusivly) towards business and the current gaps in the workforce.

Wifes point of view: State education should be more encompasing than that. Educating children should be given a well rounded education not limited and focused to a specfic goal. By limiting education in such a way you not only deny poorer children access to the arts (who cannot afford private education for such subjects) but limit the possibabilty of producing the next great artist or historian e.t.c.

What do you guys think ?
I believe you're both right. Children to about the age of 18 should indeed have access to both the arts, history, and trade related specialties.

Every effort should be made to encourage schools to provide as many options as possible. Some people need more real-world preparation than others. Forcing even more literature down a child's throat, when at age 16 or so the student decided he/she was going to hate anyhow, does no good. Not allowing advanced studies literature classes possibly deprives the student of inspiration and society of a great future artist.

Overall, I think each society should educate it's populace to a level just slightly above the level it needs them to be.

Man is the only animal that blushes, or needs to.-- Mark Twain
#17  
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(Posted as caelis666)
Posts: 486/2297
(25-Jun-2006 at 14:24)


Mkay, I hate to drop in, but if the two of you don't mind, I'll share my own opinion

Before answering the original question, answer this one: Why do we have a state/government?

In my opinion, we have created a state and chosen a government for the single reason that we want it to make our lifes happier. For this we pay taxes, follow laws, etc etc.

How does this relate to the subject? Simple. I contribute to society. By contributing to society I can expect something back from it. I myself enjoy learning things that I am interested in. Therefor, the state, which is designed to make my life happier, should give me the opportunity to. Even if I were the only person on this planet who would enjoy studying arts or history or philosophy, then still the state should grand me the opportunity to. Otherwise, why should I contribute to a society that's not going to do anything for me?

Grashnack, you argue that the state should not finance studying of the arts, because the people who study it will not be able to repay that money later on. I think that statement is morally corrupt. I do not live to repay the state. The state exists for me, not the other way around.

Also, when you let the government decide what makes people's lifes happier and what not, you take a very dangerous path. Yes, it is very possible that the gardener does not want to learn about shakespeare. But he should be allowed the opportunity to decide that for himself. You cannot expect him to do that in his 'own time'. How is he going to find out that there ever existed a person called shakespeare if he hadn't learned it in school? You actively deny him his chance to gain knowledge.

Our ability to learn and use the things we learn to our advantage is the very thing that makes us human. Therefor, everyone should always be allowed and have the opportunity to learn everything they want, no matter how useless it seems. Even more, they should be actively stimulated to learn.

Education needs more money, not less.

Modern world I'm not pleased to meet you

You just bring me down
#18  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Caelis666 Add Caelis666 to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 498/555
(25-Jun-2006 at 19:50)


Re: What is the point of education ?

Originally Posted by Grashnak:
So what? Does that stop them functioning in society ?
Exactly the point. Not knowing certain things doesn't make you stop functioning in society or economy. As someone already mentioned, a gardener probably doesn't need to know about Shakespeare. If you look at it that way, any knowledge outside your specific branch of economy is redundant. But the very essence of being a human is not just to work and produce goods and wealth to 'repay' the country for the costs of our education.
#19  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Ian Out Add Ian Out to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 1423/1988
Donated $2.08
(25-Jun-2006 at 21:43)


The school should teach everything in earlier years. However, when the student grows up he should only be forced to take classes which are crucial for his development, and the rest should be choices. For example, you need math to make a living. You also need English, but to go back to the Shakespeare example, you don't need that. If you read any of his plays - or even one line out of one of his plays, you'd know that it's utterly useless nowadays. English classes should teach modern english. A separate, optional class should be set up for kids who actually want to learn it. Luckly, after the first year of highschool that choice was given to me, and I took a pragmatic english class. I don't use the knowledge acquired all the time - I'm certainly not using it for this post - but it's good to know you have it when you need it. I would not be so happy knowing what hamlet is about. Old english is basically a whole different language anyways.

One-line summary: Schools should prepare students for the real world while giving them freedom of choice.

"Why should I have to work for everything?! It's like saying I don't deserve it!" - Calvin.
#20  
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