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The "Useless Degree" Concept is Unenlightened

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posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 12:06 AM
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The "useless degree" concept is based on boiling down everything to money. The "useless" in "useless degrees" means that the degrees won't help individuals holding the degrees to make money.

Is that not a completely unenlightened way of looking at the world?

Wouldn't it be better to have a society that's poor, wise, and happy than a society that's rich, foolish, and miserable? Could it be that those with the consciousness that propagates the "useless degree" concept are helping to create the latter?

Universities are not meant to be vocational training centers. It's almost like the people that propagate the "useless degree" concept want to force everyone into attending a vocational training center despite the fact that universities have never been meant to be that. These people seem to want the world to conform to their value system which is, "everything needs to boil down to money." I assert that that is the consciousness that is making the world increasingly rich, foolish, and miserable.

For those that believe in the "useless degree" concept, take a step back and think non-linearly for a moment. If we want to create a better society for all, wouldn't it take progress in every field including the fields that are put in the "useless degree" category? How could the necessary progress be made to make society better for all without the knowledge transmittal process of the university system functioning in its entirety?

I get the feeling that the people propagating the "useless degree" concept would often like to just do away with universities completely and replace them with vocational training centers. That's about as unenlightened as one can be in my opinion.
edit on 11-8-2015 by Profusion because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 12:34 AM
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a reply to: Profusion

You're right, if someone wishes to put themselves tens of thousands of dollars into student loan debt to obtain a degree in art history, that's entirely their choice. Obviously the degree isn't worthless to them because they're willing to pay for it for the next 10-20 years.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 12:49 AM
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a reply to: Profusion

You know my friend, the tough truth is that you're wrong. Those professors who teach those classes go out and eat food produced by laborers and industrial scientists who don't have the liberty of thinking about philosophy divorced from power, art divorced from marketing affect, or social studies divorced from social conditioning. The means of production in our society is tied to the pragmatism of power, and those who leave that are themselves left in intellectual movements (I assume to be, for instance, money laundering schemes) like "modern art" of the 1970s: They fool many, but those who made the money were connected with real world realities the millions of failed imitators were not: The need to establish the intangible nature of economic value, which those who needed to move money untracibly desired be established in the collective mind of the US.

The true socially beneficial state requires self knowledge by the people, the knowledge of the people of their own self deceptions, and vices, and the pleasure they feel when they indulge those vices. Only in the light of the awareness of what we really are can heartfelt moral decisions be made. The arrogance of degrees which no one is interested in must be cast aside by those individuals interested in serving the people, the market must be listened to with its secret wisdom of what the people want.

edit on 11-8-2015 by tridentblue because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 01:25 AM
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originally posted by: burdman30ott6
a reply to: Profusion

You're right, if someone wishes to put themselves tens of thousands of dollars into student loan debt to obtain a degree in art history, that's entirely their choice. Obviously the degree isn't worthless to them because they're willing to pay for it for the next 10-20 years.



Nearly 20 million Americans attend college each year. Of that 20 million, close to 12 million – or 60% - borrow annually to help cover costs.
en.wikipedia.org...


According to that, 40% of college students in the USA aren't borrowing "annually." But, is borrowing necessary for anyone to attend college in the USA? Look at this:

10 Colleges and Universities with $0 Tuition
learningpath.org...

20 Tuition-Free Colleges
affordableschools.net...

The Cheapest Colleges in America
www.ranker.com...

My advice to anyone that wants to get a degree in a subject that won't help you land a job (what does 'prestige' matter in that case anyway), would be to look at the top schools on the above list.

Most Americans (if they were sufficiently motivated) could probably afford to attend the schools with the cheapest tuition on this list without borrowing money to do it:

THE 30 BEST AFFORDABLE ONLINE COLLEGES 2014
www.bestvalueschools.com...

Also for USA students:

How US students get a university degree for free in Germany
www.bbc.com...

Let's look outside of the USA:

5 Countries with Free University Education
www.collegeaftermath.com...

Free education
en.wikipedia.org...

Based on my research, one can get a university education cheaply probably everywhere in the world, in many places it's even free.


originally posted by: tridentblue
a reply to: Profusion

You know my friend, the tough truth is that you're wrong. Those professors who teach those classes go out and eat food produced by laborers and industrial scientists who don't have the liberty of thinking about philosophy divorced from power, art divorced from marketing affect, or social studies divorced from social conditioning. The means of production in our society is tied to the pragmatism of power, and those who leave that are themselves left in intellectual movements (I assume to be, for instance, money laundering schemes) like "modern art" of the 1970s: They fool many, but those who made the money were connected with real world realities the millions of failed imitators were not: The need to establish the intangible nature of economic value, which those who needed to move money untracibly desired be established in the collective mind of the US.

The true socially beneficial state requires self knowledge by the people, the knowledge of the people of their own self deceptions, and vices, and the pleasure they feel when they indulge those vices. Only in the light of the awareness of what we really are can heartfelt moral decisions be made. The arrogance of degrees which no one is interested in must be cast aside by those individuals interested in serving the people, the market must be listened to with its secret wisdom of what the people want.


I think there's a lot of truth in what you wrote. I just think we can't throw the baby out with the bathwater.

A university is a lot more than its teachers. It's the facilities, it's the interaction with other students, it's the chance to become aware of and concentrate on abstract ideas that one may never have time to ponder again, it's the chance to formulate one's own worldview hopefully unimpeded by societal norms, and it's many other such useful things.

I have a lot of experience in universities and based on my experience, many instructors are small-minded and brainwashed. But, many are as open-minded as you'll find in society. I didn't like attending classes taught by instructors who were brainwashed and/or beholden to the system. But, that was balanced out by the teachers whose classes were more radical and enlightening than reading ATS for a couple of hours, easily.


Maybe I was lucky to have the latter type of instructors but I had a lot of them.
edit on 11-8-2015 by Profusion because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 01:39 AM
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a reply to: Profusion




Wouldn't it be better to have a society that's poor, wise, and happy than a society that's rich, foolish, and miserable? Could it be that those with the consciousness that propagates the "useless degree" concept are helping to create the latter? 



Getting a degree doesn't neccessarily make you wise. It's a smart thing to do in many countries to actually NOT get a degree at a university and take courses online instead. In fact that's the smart thing to do in any country... Not getting a degree is not anti higher education, its anti exploitation.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 01:46 AM
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A university is a lot more than its teachers. It's the facilities, it's the interaction with other students, it's the chance to become aware of and concentrate on abstract ideas that one may never have time to ponder again, it's the chance to formulate one's own worldview hopefully unimpeded by societal norms, and it's many other such useful things. 


That may be true, but in terms of actually learning the subject, those things are probably more of a distraction to most students. 90% of universities arent going to provide those benefits anyway, so it will be just like learning from home...

The sad truth is universities are just leeching from society to pay for research and wages.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 03:05 AM
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a reply to: Profusion

I don't know, man. I attended college 65 miles from my home, drove my old truck in and back every day, and worked while I was at it. Between that, the amount of studying and homework I had to slog through to get a bachelors in Civil Engineering with minors in math and economics, and the 4-5 hours of sleep I lived on for 5 years, my university experience was pretty much professors and classrooms. Not much time for pondering abstract ideas outside of theoretical mathematics and not much time for interaction. I loved every glorious, tunnel visioned moment of it, too! Life has never been as simple nor has the price of error ever been as cheap as those years of college. The only part of it I truly hated was mandatory "electives" outside of engineering, econ, math, and support sciences. Utterly detested the liberal arts credits we were required to take and to this day I have no idea how anyone can possibly sludge their way through enough of them to actually get a liberal arts degree.

But you know, it takes all kinds really. If they offered a degree in fishing or fly tying or hunting and earning capacity was no issue, I'd probably get a doctorate in those areas of study. But they don't offer them and they wouldn't pay the bills if they did, so here I am with a BSCE, half my Master's Degree credit requirement, and a good paying career thanks to it.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 06:34 AM
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People call them "useless" degrees because the people who do them often end up working in a field totally different to what they actually studied. There is such a thing as self-education, and in some cases some people would've been better off, rather than racking up a huge debt.

It's not so bad in my country, but I know in the US it's really, really bad. You guys have to pay so much to get a degree, it's totally unfair. Because of that money oriented attitude, of course degrees will just become a means to an end. If you're paying that much money you just can't avoid that.

Some countries, like Norway, have free university education for everyone - domestic students and internationals. If you've got a system like that perhaps education will be valued for itself rather than its career potential.

Education is a fine thing, but you don't need a degree to be educated. Like at uni I did science, but I also love literature and history, so I'm fairly well versed in those areas even though I never studied them formally at university, but rather just in my own time.

Do you see what I mean? In most cases education just isn't free but really expensive, and it takes three years to do a Bachelor's, so there's the time to think of as well, it's a long term investment. And you don't need to go to university to learn things, like MIT has a bunch of free online material.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 08:37 AM
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a reply to: Profusion

One of the things I appreciate about your follow up post is that you listed many free or very low cost options for people to get educated, which in turn, will bring them more earning potential.

What I dislike is when people presume that having a liberal arts degree should merit them earning potential just because they have a "degree".

Historically speaking the degrees that earn the most are applied science and engineering degrees. Followed closely by soft science degrees like theoretical physics.

The top earners following this are not degrees. They are vocational certifications(i.e. Trade certification). Plumbers, welders, mechanics, and so on.

The fact is many people want to be passively wealthy without putting in the non-glamorous work required to do so. They also understand that despite the work, no outcome is guaranteed for their effort. The risk of failure scares most people into pursuing "what they love" because it is comfortable compared to the not so glamorous world of the carpenter, plumber, or mechanic.
edit on pTue, 11 Aug 2015 08:38:05 -0500201511America/Chicago2015-08-11T08:38:05-05:0031vx8 by projectvxn because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 01:08 PM
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Where to even begin. Musical chairs, anyone? The music stops when you leave the campus. It's not just that you're a hell of a lot more guaranteed to be in debt rather than making more monies from the efforts, it's the much of the information is available free, online, or at a public library, and you don't have to pay a dime.

People get more of an education on the streets than they do in your average college. Vocational schools are actually the only damned thing that makes sense anymore. You know why? The rate of technological progress is why. The only way to compete is to streamline the process. We already get basic education in grade school, and most of that is regurgitated ad nausem through each successive year, adding a single block or two on top.

It makes little sense to go after a traditional degree unless you're going after one that is in high demand, and projected to stay that way for the next decade minimum.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 03:19 PM
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I have what might be considered a useless degree, but I didn't go to Univ. to learn how to make money; I went to learn a subject that I was passionate about.

But as luck would have it, I found a job in my chosen field and it eventually lead to my entrepreneurial efforts that has paid off quite handsomely.

I do wish that I had of picked up a LL.M along with my MA. So much low hanging fruit available!!!!
edit on 11-8-2015 by olaru12 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 03:24 PM
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Getting the job depends mostly on your relationship to the people working there or like good references. The guy who's hiring is more likely to hire somebody he knows or if not somebody who he knows knows. The degree concept can really only help although I never understood why school is so expensive. It's the job market being forced to compare somebody who stopped education at a high school level vs a more responsible/educated college level. It's just their right to hire based on who they can trust to do the job the way they want, not people too smart who might jeopardize the order of things. One thing I've realized is somebody in lower levels of business having really good ideas eventually gets them fired. Knowing people and being able to socialize around the work-family-tree is the only thing that matters & college degree shows you can do that better than a highschooler. Sadly.



posted on Aug, 11 2015 @ 07:23 PM
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The "useless degree" concept is based on boiling down everything to money. The "useless" in "useless degrees" means that the degrees won't help individuals holding the degrees to make money.

Is that not a completely unenlightened way of looking at the world?



I think it is indeed a very enlightened way of viewing reality instead of being unenlightened to to not do so. After all, common paths lead to common destinations. Just take a look around.

ALL degrees are useless unless one aspires to becoming a daily commuter for the rest of their lives that leaves one not living their ideal dream life to the fullest. College and universities are the last stomping grounds before the sheep get sent out to pasture to work the fields. Yet, without such individuals who seek conformity, those who go against the grain and think outside of the box would have no one to employ. The conductor of an orchestra relies on musicians to play their small part.



Wouldn't it be better to have a society that's poor, wise, and happy than a society that's rich, foolish, and miserable?


Yes. However, I personally embrace rich, wise, and happy. Poor, foolish and miserable usually is what post secondary education produces due to many buying the lie and paying through the nose for it in the form of student loans, mortgages, and bills.



Could it be that those with the consciousness that propagates the "useless degree" concept are helping to create the latter?


Perhaps.



Universities are not meant to be vocational training centers. It's almost like the people that propagate the "useless degree" concept want to force everyone into attending a vocational training center despite the fact that universities have never been meant to be that. These people seem to want the world to conform to their value system which is, "everything needs to boil down to money." I assert that that is the consciousness that



I personally do not see any difference between universities and vocational training centres. They both produce daily commuters - fiddlers.

I believe many such as myself who have gone against the grain and carved out our own paths in life with much success are simply imploring others to follow their "opus" and embrace their passions that makes them tick. After all, many who do not, often end up so tightly wound up they no longer have "freedom" to breathe and live a fulfilling life. This is what causes misery and despair, imo. The lack of freedom to live life as one chooses nurtures misery. However, speaking from personal experience, having too much freedom in life can also become paralyzing if one is not careful.



"everything needs to boil down to money."


On the surface, it may appear to be so but, in reality it is much deeper. Money allows for the abundance of freedom to live life how one chooses. It goes beyond the materialistic paradigm and is more aligned with freedom of expression towards how one has the means to map out their daily existence without bowing down to external factors. Money allows one to wake up when they choose; go to bed when they choose; and do whatever the heck they want in between those times. Money allows one to do away with alarm clocks.

Lack of freedom and the endless pursuit of wealth without much result is making the world increasingly foolish, and miserable - not financial wealth itself. The ignorance towards how one can attain it is what makes one miserable. The ignorance of placing more value of financial wealth only to not be able to eat from the money tree is what makes one miserable because, they ignorantly believe that is where happiness can be found. Freedom (true abundance) can be found in the poorest of places...

The "pursuit" without results is what makes many miserable. They bought the lie.



For those that believe in the "useless degree" concept, take a step back and think non-linearly for a moment. If we want to create a better society for all, wouldn't it take progress in every field including the fields that are put in the "useless degree" category? How could the necessary progress be made to make society better for all without the knowledge transmittal process of the university system functioning in its entirety?



ALL degrees are useless - both vocational and ivy league. Again, if one does not mind becoming a daily commuter not living a fulfilled life they once imagined they deserved when they were children, then they will understand that it is all the same. The only difference is some sheep are paid more than other sheep. Yet, they are all sheep regardless.




How could the necessary progress be made to make society better for all without the knowledge transmittal process of the university system functioning in its entirety?



I agree; somebody has to be an employee; somebody has to do the work. Bless those who want to be a cog in the machine. "Net-WORKING" is a good thing. That net is difficult to escape at times for many fish.



I get the feeling that the people propagating the "useless degree" concept would often like to just do away with universities completely and replace them with vocational training centers. That's about as unenlightened as one can be in my opinion.


I personally encourage both to continue for selfish reasons. Why? I like being a composer.

"The opportunities of man are limited only by his imagination. But so few have imagination that there are ten thousand fiddlers to one composer." - Charles F. Kettering

This is an enlightened talk about finding your Opus and becoming the composer of your own life that goes beyond the small box that many close themselves off within:





edit on 11-8-2015 by Involutionist because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 15 2015 @ 11:37 PM
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Problem isn't with the degrees, but the gatekeepers in charge of admittance for employment. Rather than evaluating on skills, which the degree is a supposed to certify, they're looking for experience. I'd love it if I could just go through an evaluation in order to get a position, and a degree should be enough to get to that stage. But it never happens, everybody keeps looking for past work which I don't have because everyone else is following the same damn gatekeeper rules. Not much chance to get a fair shot if you don't know anyone who can slip you in somewhere. That's where the name "useless" comes in.

I still practice what I've learned as a "hobby" of sorts, but that doesn't seem to count for much. If still not earning by it or marketing it somehow, nobody seems to care. Also this aspect becomes harder when there isn't much money to put into projects, either for increasing exposure or production of some sort of tangible goods.

Now as things coming down to just money? Only because the rent is too damn high. (And not to laugh at the meme, most places it's true.) Wouldn't care about it otherwise. Volunteering doesn't pay the bills (unless you can manage to get a grant somehow) and honestly minimum wage or close to it while doing something I don't care about feels like another slap in the face on top of it. Not to mention it also leaves little time to keep in practice with all that which you learned. Doing two jobs doesn't work even if society likes to exemplify the high-energy people, and forgets that low-energy people will only fall on their face to the point of non-functioning trying to do the same. (Some resort to drugs to achieve this and I'm not talking about caffiene, but that's an even bigger risk to your health.) Doing one thing, and doing it well and being paid well to do it would be preferred if that option were there.



posted on Aug, 16 2015 @ 07:56 PM
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a reply to: Profusion

From the father of a masters candidate that did his undergrad major/minor in english/ journalism, its not useless. Its less marketable. With the enormous investment of a degree, the smart money is on a marketable degree. Or you have to do post grad ro make it marketable. Unless you are happy in public education. Which is fine too.

But he was passionate about it, so he kind of was compelled towards liberal arts to begin with.



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