Category: Death by Education

Reflections on Nature, Knowledge, and Learning

Love for “nature” in the modern sense grows in inverse proportion to one’s ability to love nature in the ancient sense. That is, if humans today were more interesting, less mindlessly slavish, less devoted to the emptiest pursuits, and more open to the consideration of ideas, beauties, and ways of living truly alternative to those promoted in the popular culture, I would probably...

Two Random Acts of Civilizational Implosion

George Clooney, a thoroughly inconsequential member of an ultimately inconsequential profession who because he is famous for being famous believes, like so many of his ilk, that the world ought to care what he thinks about important political issues, has praised Australia’s Covid-19 response, and declared, on the basis of his no doubt expert-analyzed calculations, that 900,000 lives would have been saved had...

Higher Education, Part Two

What is disturbing about today’s university is not the recognition that so few people in it see the world as I do. Disagreement or minority status never bothers me. Rather it is that so few are able even to comprehend the possibility that anyone might not see the world as they do. The uniformity of assumptions and presuppositions, the perfect conformity of all...

Higher Education

The primary aims of the university, from its medieval foundations until about fifty years ago, were to prod a young person into doubting his youthful certainties, to shake the foundations of his most cherished and comforting assumptions, to push him into a vast, confusing marketplace of ideas and sensibilities, where…

Activism, Progress, and Thought

A young man should speak only in the form of questions, at least in public, while issuing his opinionated outbursts in private, preferably alone. To be perfectly clear, this is not to say that he should form no opinions, but only that he should be discouraged in every possible way, including through a well-honed sense of secrecy, from expressing them to anyone, let...

Oh Person! A New Bible!

Just in time for the holiday season, that most politically incorrect of all popular books, the Bible, is getting yet another much-needed update, in order that it may reflect more accurately the progressive urge to eliminate all past ideas and ways of thinking. From the LA Times: An update to the New Revised Standard Version was released digitally this month and is to be in...

Skipping to the Conclusion

Five years ago, I posted my book, “The Case Against Public Education,” here in Limbo, both as an e-book download and in a readable online version. It made no discernible difference to anything, of course. Five years is rarely long enough for serious ideas to take root, particularly ideas which run counter to all the social conventions and intellectual trends of the day;...

Schooling vs. Intellectual Development: Two Factors

The number one requirement for any serious intellectual growth is time alone — a lot of it. The thoughtful young person, full of the self-doubt of ignorance and always worried about disapproval and rejection, needs the freedom to stretch out and wander without fear of continually running into walls of social stigma and ridicule. School seeks to occupy this young person’s days with...

Today’s Lesson

A student who has been reading a lot lately informs me of her latest book, a popular American novel called Wonder, “about a boy with a birth defect on his face. He goes to school, where some children are mean to him.” This story, she explains, reminds her of a cruel trick she played on another girl as a child, and of the...

Reflections: Courage, Lyricism, Self-Knowledge

It’s all relative.— I have never felt particularly brave in my life. Nor do I believe I have ever acted with any special degree of courage even in an isolated moment. On the contrary, I have often been disappointed at what I have regarded as a deficiency in this area. These days, however, judging myself relative to what I see around me, I...