Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Or is that also a question that's too stupid to even consider, like when Socrates tried to argue that no one knows anything the other Greeks simply punched him in the face because there was clearly no point wasting there time with people like him?
The upshot will be that people will game the system, choose which ever moniker gives them the most advantage. As it usual in these situations, the honest will be the most disadvantaged.
I wonder how people will be forced to disclose?
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Mr. Chelgren is trolling. He's trying to appeal to the popular notion that academics are biased in order to drum up support for whatever his agenda is. And Dean Dad and commenter MPLedger are further right to point out that it would be really hard even to decide who counts as a member of a party. People can affiliate however they want and then vote however they want. They can also presumably donate to whomever they want and write letters to politicians espousing whatever view they want...all without necessarily calling their party affiliation into question. Mr. Chelgren's is a bad idea.
But I believe Dean Dad is mistaken in some of his reasoning and that mistake is what the "anonymous" commenter above is trying to address, although I find that commenter's point unconvincing. No, being a Democrat or Republican doesn't (as far as I know) affect one's approach to transmissions in automotive technology, or affect the way one uses quadratic equations, or affect the validity of the Pythagorean theorem. But it can, on some level, affect how one teaches US history or political science, or sociology, or philosophy, or literature. It's not quite as clear cut as the examples from automotic tech and math suggests. I have anecdotes of instructors, including myself as a TA, acting poorly and in a partisan matter during discussion sections. Those are just anecdotes and oughtn't smear the profession as a whole. But they do happen.
And with all that, Mr. Chelgren's idea is still a bad one. Instructors should be judged on their competency as instructors. Part of that competency involves not using the instrutor's position as a bully pulpit for their pet political projects. But one can do that while being of (almost) whatever party (I'll except certain Godwin-discussion-inducing parties). Purity tests or "representational" tests just won't work.
If Mr. Chelgren is trolling--and, again, I believe he is--then the trolling works because people believe (perhaps mostly wrongly, but also a little bit rightly) that there is a liberal or leftist bias in academe and that taxpayer money goes to support that bias. There's the shell of a legitimate grievance there. Only a shell, but a shell nonetheless.
And no, it's not going to pass, and I doubt it'll make it out of committee - it's flagrantly unconstitutional. Whether Chelgren is trolling, engaging in political grandstanding for his constituents, or genuinely thinks it might pass isn't clear to me. He's not the brightest bulb in our state senate.
What impressed my young mind was a class discussion after the election of 1980, when one of the older students congratulated him on his party winning, and he revealed that he had voted for the PCs because he believed their leader was an honest man. The lessons I learned that day were that party politics is a means to an end, that people matter, and that integrity is a quality that should be rated highly in considering who to vote for.
But until Chelgren and your first anon commenter band together to insist on 50% (or more) of West Points faculty and student body to be female, it's safe to write this off as trollin.
Yes, and yes.
I don't think anyone mentioned Business schools. Although I've never seen any evidence of Marxists or kleptocrats dominating their faculty, the Kock brothers would like a certain type of libertarian (as opposed to Republican or Democrat) added to those departments. Aren't they already predominantly Republican, even if not Trumpian?
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