In 1517, a monk named Martin Luther announced that the Catholic Church is a scam. Said church was scamming people by telling them that their sins can be atoned if they pay the church enough money. Year 2017, the scam continues, except now it’s the University (which has its origins in the Church) scamming people by telling them they’ll never live The Dream if they don’t have a college degree. That they can’t do this and that if they don’t have a degree in this and that.
Scams work because people are scared. Look to the past to know how scared people are and who the scammers are today. People don’t change.
How the Catholic Church Scammed People
They told everyone that they need the Church to achieve salvation and to live a good life. That one can’t receive God’s grace on one’s own. The scam worked because it offered an easy way out for those who wanted salvation without taking full responsibility for their fuck ups. When paying the Church didn’t lead to a good life, people reasoned that it was because they didn’t pay the Church enough money.
How Universities Scam People
Same shit happening today, except it’s the University instead of the Church scamming people. Here are some parallels:
Church says: You will be punished for your sins if you don’t pay us to atone them.
University says: You will never live a comfortable middle class life if you don’t have a college degree
Church says: Bad shit happened to you even after you confessed your sins because you didn’t pay us enough
University says: You’re still flipping burgers after your college degree because you need a Masters degree to work in your field of study.
Church says: One cannot know God except through the Church
University says: One cannot receive an education and become learned except at college
Church says: Only we can interpret the Bible for you.
University says: Only we can teach you how to do that job and to read that book.
Church says: You’ll never live a good life or find salvation if you join the Protestant Church (Protestant nations are wealthier than Catholic ones)
University says: You’ll never live a good life if you work redneck jobs like underwater welding (which pays $150,000/year)
Church says: Money you give us will help the poor
University says: Money you give us will educate the poor
Church says: You’re a heretic if you don’t believe us.
University says: You’re stupid if you don’t have a college degree.
The University takes responsibility for educating oneself away from the individual and offers an easy but expensive way for someone to appear intelligent, educated, and cultured without actually being any of those things. They’ve convinced many people that a college degree *certifies* its recipient as intelligent, educated, and decent, ready for big big things.
Free Community College Movement
It’s on the platform of both Seattle mayoral candidates. Meaning, it’s probably going to happen and eventually they’ll stick the bill to businesses because they think they’re doing businesses a favor by “training” people to be employable. Yet most schools and courses of study train students to become UNEMPLOYABLE and they have to be retrained by the businesses that hire them.
The only traits you need to do any job is grit and curiosity, and most colleges and courses of study don’t teach that precisely because they take the responsibility for educating and improving oneself away from the individual. College doesn’t educate anyone — it’s a social networking event — only you can educate yourself.
Bondage comes in many forms, it doesn’t have to be slavery.
Seattle passed a soda tax, which is a humiliating tax on the poor. They now want to that tax to fund free community college to the poor. That’s fucked up: tax the poor and then put them through programs that will ensure they become unemployable and remain poor while dressing it up as White benevolence. This is the same shit the Church pulled on people 500 years ago: take money from the poor to “help” the poor while fucking them up in fundamental ways.
We can do as Martin Luther did, which is to call bullshit on these stupid college programs that produce a lot of fuck ups and instead develop apprenticeship programs. Luther translated the Bible into the vernacular so that non-clergy could read and interpret it for themselves, making salvation a personal matter rather than mediated by a bunch of crooks. We can do the same for people with apprenticeship programs that give people the confidence to educate themselves instead of being told what and how to think. Let’s do it.
Saw the link to your blog on Quora. I have been feeling bitter lately, about the massive debt I’ve accumulated for college. The only classes that really teach critical thinking skills are science classes. Yet, even they seem to have a political undertone. Maybe if you’re planning on becoming a doctor, or getting a career that’s specialized, a degree is necessary. I’ve worked alongside people at low paying jobs who had master’s degrees. They were making $10 an hour just like me. Not saying college is necessarily bad, but it doesn’t always produce the promised results! Thanks for the article.