Schools of Fools

The school experience. School related queries, discussions, and stories that aren't specific to a subject.

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GordonT
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Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:33 am UTC

In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

How hard is it to care about knowing about the universe and things in it???? What the hell do we have to do to get people interested in learning? Not the fake regurgitated bullshit that makes up 90% of all subject matter "taught" in high school, but real learning about things that matter in life. I thought the distinguishing feature of the human psyche was unyielding curiosity and the overwhelming desire to learn and evolve. Am I crazy for thinking that? Because all I see is a whole bunch of myopic morons meandering amidst the mindless masses that make up the mundane and morally methodical demography, marching mechanically among the macrocosm as messy multitudes of matter, muttering and mumbling without meaning, masking monumental mediocrity with maniacal mitigations.

Is there any hope?
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby lulzfish » Sat Feb 27, 2010 7:44 am UTC

No. But once you get to college, many of them disappear, and you can easily ignore the rest of them. I assume "the real world" will be the same way.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:14 am UTC

I find it difficult to ignore them, even in college and "the real world." The majority of the human race is clueless and short-sighted, and they're the ones who will determine the progression (or lack there of) of the species. The only way to counter the expanding myopia is to educate people, and the education systems just keep getting worse! In Star Trek every ten year old knows basic calculus, and in today's society the average ten year old can't even spell "calculus!"
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Birk » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:36 am UTC

So what do you plan to do about it?

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Dason » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:57 am UTC

I guess I don't really see what you're trying to get across in your post. I mean... other than blatant alliteration. Is your point that the current state of affairs is horrible and there needs to be some sort of change? If that's the case then I ask the same question as Birk. What are you going to do about it? Sit around and bitch? Or do you want to change the way things are? You could become a teacher and try to influence the system that you feel is inadequate?
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TaintedDeity » Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:38 am UTC

When you started listing off stereotypes I thought you were doing it as a joke to set up some sort of discussion about groups or something but... you played it seriously, it looks like.
There's always going to be people who want to learn and people who don't care in your life.
Who's to say the people who seek knowledge aren't just another silly group?
Every other group also thinks they're the best, you know.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby achan1058 » Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:09 pm UTC

Looks like another case of "You need to go to grad school" syndrome.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Mokele » Sat Feb 27, 2010 1:39 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

How hard is it to care about knowing about the universe and things in it???? What the hell do we have to do to get people interested in learning? Not the fake regurgitated bullshit that makes up 90% of all subject matter "taught" in high school, but real learning about things that matter in life. I thought the distinguishing feature of the human psyche was unyielding curiosity and the overwhelming desire to learn and evolve. Am I crazy for thinking that? Because all I see is a whole bunch of myopic morons meandering amidst the mindless masses that make up the mundane and morally methodical demography, marching mechanically among the macrocosm as messy multitudes of matter, muttering and mumbling without meaning, masking monumental mediocrity with maniacal mitigations.

Is there any hope?



Blah blah blah Whine Whine Whine Everyone sucks for not liking the same things I do, the world would be better if everyone was like me, any interest I don't consider to be intellectual is worthless, blah blah blah.


Seriously, grow up and get over yourself.
"With malleus aforethought, mammals got an earful of their ancestor's jaw" - J. Burns, Biograffiti

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sat Feb 27, 2010 5:21 pm UTC

Mokele wrote:
GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

How hard is it to care about knowing about the universe and things in it???? What the hell do we have to do to get people interested in learning? Not the fake regurgitated bullshit that makes up 90% of all subject matter "taught" in high school, but real learning about things that matter in life. I thought the distinguishing feature of the human psyche was unyielding curiosity and the overwhelming desire to learn and evolve. Am I crazy for thinking that? Because all I see is a whole bunch of myopic morons meandering amidst the mindless masses that make up the mundane and morally methodical demography, marching mechanically among the macrocosm as messy multitudes of matter, muttering and mumbling without meaning, masking monumental mediocrity with maniacal mitigations.

Is there any hope?



Blah blah blah Whine Whine Whine Everyone sucks for not liking the same things I do, the world would be better if everyone was like me, any interest I don't consider to be intellectual is worthless, blah blah blah.


Seriously, grow up and get over yourself.



Don't know if your reading comprehension skills are quite up to par, but just in case they're not I'll point out that I wasn't talking about a difference in interest, but a lack of awareness and general intelligence in the majority of society's youth.

Seriously, maybe the education system failed you too.
Last edited by GordonT on Sun Feb 28, 2010 1:29 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sat Feb 27, 2010 5:26 pm UTC

You guys are totally right. There needs to be a change--a major one. I know I just started off by complaining like a sad school boy (pun?) but that was only to see if anyone else was interested. Anyway, What can I/we do about the disgusting situation the world is in? Well, the answers simple: we spread awareness. That being said, the actual process of doing so is not nearly as simple. How do you get millions of people to start objectively analyzing the state of society?

Maybe we should make neat coffee mugs or something.
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby oagersnap » Sat Feb 27, 2010 5:39 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:What the hell do we have to do to get people interested in learning?


GordonT wrote:...I wasn't talking about a difference in interest...


Sounds like someone is contradicting himself.
You sound incredibly pretentious using all those alliterations. Also, what do you mean by "the fake regurgitated bullshit that makes up 90% of all subject matter "taught" in high school"?

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Velict » Sat Feb 27, 2010 6:59 pm UTC

achan1058 wrote:Looks like another case of "You need to go to grad school" syndrome.


+1

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sat Feb 27, 2010 8:05 pm UTC

Velict wrote:
achan1058 wrote:Looks like another case of "You need to go to grad school" syndrome.


+1


Grad school is expensive. D:
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Mokele » Sat Feb 27, 2010 9:51 pm UTC

I wasn't talking about a difference in interest, but a lack of awareness and general intelligence in the majority of society's youth.


Based on what? Your highly biased views of their behavior in an exceedingly artificial system (high school)? In your own first post, you cite some of them getting 100% on math tests, and regardless of the reason you attribute to it, that surely disproves your point about the level of intelligence.

Have you ever actually interacted with these people in any meaningful way? Or are you just judging them based on superficial observations and exceptionally brief interactions? You assume they're "not aware" (whatever that means) and "not intelligent" because they don't act, look, and speak like you.

When you've actually grown up, kid, you'll realize just how bad of an idea it is to judge people based on superficialities and high-school personas.

Want some proof?

I personally know 2 lead singers in punk rock bands. One is taking classes in rocket science, the other in epidemiology. The lead singer of the band Offspring has a PhD in Molecular Biology, and the lead guitarist of Queen has a PhD in astrophysics. I know a high school jock who's now a professor of evolutionary biology, a former pro footballer who is now at the cutting edge of captive breeding of numerous exotic reptile species, and a baseball player who almost went pro and now is a prominent professor of organismal biology (he gave a TED lecture recently). An Olympic figure skater was on my Masters committee because she's now an insect physiologist.

Even leaving that aside, I fail to see what's gotten you all butt-hurt. People vary in intelligence, just like they vary in height. Complaining about it won't do squat, and looking down on others just makes you look like an arrogant dick. People's interests vary too, and frightening as it may be for you to consider, some folks genuinely are interested in sports, or social drama, or whatever else it is that you don't like.

Anyway, What can I/we do about the disgusting situation the world is in? Well, the answers simple: we spread awareness. That being said, the actual process of doing so is not nearly as simple. How do you get millions of people to start objectively analyzing the state of society?


You've never defined "awareness", and if you're simply talking about political engagement, your views are laughably wrong. There's no magic solution to the world's problems that everyone just can't see. We *are* the world's problems - loads of perfectly aware humans, all scrambling for the same resources, fighting over space, etc. The problem isn't the lack of "aware people", it's that they all want different things and have different priorities, and many times for legitimate reasons.

Take a good hard look at your own views and I'm betting what you're *really* saying is that everything would be better if everyone saw things the way you do.
"With malleus aforethought, mammals got an earful of their ancestor's jaw" - J. Burns, Biograffiti

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Shivari » Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:20 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:Is there any hope?


If you stop acting pretentious and arrogant, then maybe.

Seriously, what's it to you if other people play football or skateboard instead of doing such Oh me yarm SUPER ENLIGHTENED INTELLIGENT activities like yourself? You're not any better than anybody because you consider yourself smarter then them, you just come across like a total jerk, to be honest. Maybe if you spent some time with people instead of assuming you're some superior being then maybe you would get off your high horse and realize there's nothing wrong with them.
This comic pretty much describes you, bro.

PS: Useless big words don't make you seem cool or intelligent.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sun Feb 28, 2010 1:26 am UTC

Yet it is all of you who seem to absolutely need to establish some sort of superiority over me with your amazingly clever replies. I can almost see at the end of your posts the words, "That'll teach him!" along with a big smug smilie emote. Talk about stroking egos. . . .

Intelligence is important. Learning is important. If people sit around and just watch sports and just talk about skateboarding, how can things change for the better? Some may say things are fine how they are! Well, maybe those people need to take a closer look at the state of the world. Call me arrogant if you want, but I know that things need to change in this world, and I know that encouraging the pursuit of education and knowledge is probably the most important step in the process. And sorry if I'm afraid that some grinning git with the IQ of a gorilla has control over my financial security. . . . Or is, you know, running my damn country.
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:05 am UTC

GordonT wrote:If people sit around and just watch sports and just talk about skateboarding, how can things change for the better?

If we're really at the point where change is impossible, this rant is pointless. If we're not at that point, this rant is only relevant to a parallel universe. Your choice, I guess.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:23 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
GordonT wrote:If people sit around and just watch sports and just talk about skateboarding, how can things change for the better?

If we're really at the point where change is impossible, this rant is pointless. If we're not at that point, this rant is only relevant to a parallel universe. Your choice, I guess.


If there were no allowance for pointless rants, everyone would go insane.
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:27 am UTC

And if there were no allowance for sports and hairstyles?
Nothing rhymes with orange,
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Mokele » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:30 am UTC

Yet it is all of you who seem to absolutely need to establish some sort of superiority over me with your amazingly clever replies. I can almost see at the end of your posts the words, "That'll teach him!" along with a big smug smilie emote. Talk about stroking egos


My position isn't that I'm better than you. My position is that I was exactly the same as you about 13 years ago, when I was in high school. I've had time and experience and interactions with folks in which to learn that I didn't have as great a grasp of the world as I thought I did when I was 16 years old.

Intelligence is important. Learning is important.


Thank you captain obvious. Care to explain how you can magically increase someone's intelligence, especially when all available evidence points to it being *strongly* genetically determined?

If you're in the top 1% of humans for IQ, it's because of nothing more than a series of nucleotide bases. It's as much grounds for moral superiority as winning a lottery.

If people sit around and just watch sports and just talk about skateboarding, how can things change for the better?


1) Show me anyone who does that. *Anyone*. No human on earth has only one, singular interest which dominates their entire life. That you think this even occurs is proof that you don't know people.

2) As I pointed out above, we have *more* than enough diplomats, politicians, scientists, engineers, astronauts, etc. to deal with the world's challenges. The problem is that so many have conflicting goals, or that there simply isn't enough money to work on every problem at once.



It's not that the idea of improving the educational system or shrugging off our American anti-intellectualism is bad, it's that you propose and advocate for this goal exclusively by belittling and denigrating others about whom you clearly have no real knowledge, and generally come off as pompous and arrogant.

Seriously, make friends with someone who isn't like you, and you'll be surprised. Or is your giant brain afraid of actually putting your beliefs to the test?
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Flagpole Sitta » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:38 am UTC

Wah wah wah. I was ostracized in high school, so instead of undergoing difficult self inspection I'm going to assume that I'm just too smart for other people to handle, and then I'm going to belittle people's interests and probably insult a large number of people in this forum. When I get called on my arseholeishness I'm going to back pedal and claim I merely want to improve the educational system. Instead of explaining how I intend to do that, or asking for advice I'm going to whine some more about how no one understands me. Wah.




Grow up.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TheAmazingRando » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:40 am UTC

ITT: narcissistic cynical bullshit

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:44 am UTC

Flagpole Sitta wrote:Wah wah wah. I was ostracized in high school, so instead of undergoing difficult self inspection I'm going to assume that I'm just too smart for other people to handle, and then I'm going to belittle people's interests and probably insult a large number of people in this forum. When I get called on my arseholeishness I'm going to back pedal and claim I merely want to improve the educational system. Instead of explaining how I intend to do that, or asking for advice I'm going to whine some more about how no one understands me. Wah.




Grow up.



I actually thought I complimented people on this forum by confiding in them with my concerns. In other words, I think of people on this forum as intelligent people. The mentioning of football etc was just a generalization of the people who make up the unintelligent majority. I honestly don't care if someone likes sports or whatever...but when they fucking jerk off to the thought of "their" home team winning, there's a problem. (just to let you guys know, that was another exaggeration)

Also... I'm not in high school >_>
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Weeks » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:49 am UTC

I'll tell you something. You have to change the way you look at life, and people. The way you talk makes you look like you are very, very self-absorbed and know little of people, and that will only bring you problems in the future.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:50 am UTC

GordonT wrote:I honestly don't care if someone likes sports or whatever...but when they fucking jerk off to the thought of "their" home team winning, there's a problem.

So, do you care, or don't you?
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:58 am UTC

TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
GordonT wrote:I honestly don't care if someone likes sports or whatever...but when they fucking jerk off to the thought of "their" home team winning, there's a problem.

So, do you care, or don't you?


I think there's a difference between obsession and interest.
I don't know what words could adequately represent my identity. Does my consciousness really need a name? It is simply a construct by which the universe experiences itself.

Hmm. . . .

~A construct by which the universe experiences itself

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Mokele » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:03 am UTC

I think there's a difference between obsession and interest.


And what gives you the right to draw the line, or judge people for it? I could say the same thing about computers.

Also... I'm not in high school >_>


That's even more pathetic, then. Go meet some people.
Last edited by Mokele on Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:08 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Flagpole Sitta » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:07 am UTC

GordonT wrote:I actually thought I complimented people on this forum by confiding in them with my concerns. In other words, I think of people on this forum as intelligent people. The mentioning of football etc was just a generalization of the people who make up the unintelligent majority. I honestly don't care if someone likes sports or whatever...but when they fucking jerk off to the thought of "their" home team winning, there's a problem. (just to let you guys know, that was another exaggeration)

Also... I'm not in high school >_>


Well, considering I went to public school my whole life, as did most of my loved ones, and I care about hair, and I like smoking weed, insulting you were. And I don't particularly care if you think I'm intelligent. It's still condescending to dismiss most people as stupid.

And I never said you were in high school. Ostracized. Past tense.

EDIT: OH OH And I am entirely too obsessed with role playing games. Is that somehow better then being obsessed with sports?
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Kapojinha is pretty awesome too. <3

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:10 am UTC

GordonT wrote:
TheGrammarBolshevik wrote:
GordonT wrote:I honestly don't care if someone likes sports or whatever...but when they fucking jerk off to the thought of "their" home team winning, there's a problem.

So, do you care, or don't you?


I think there's a difference between obsession and interest.

You do care, then, once they cross a certain threshold of interest. This is mainly interesting because you once said that you're not talking about interest, and you were rather caustic to Mokele when he/she pointed out that you actually were.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby achan1058 » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:28 am UTC

GordonT wrote:
Velict wrote:
achan1058 wrote:Looks like another case of "You need to go to grad school" syndrome.


+1


Grad school is expensive. D:
No it isn't. I am getting enough research and teaching funds to cover my tuition, living expenses, and CD's that I bought.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GraphiteGirl » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:28 am UTC

I think you're trying to suggest that there's a lack of intellectual curiosity in the majority of people you know. But your post doesn't say that - what it says is that you have a lack of intellectual curiosity about people who are different from you, and understanding why they are different, and objectively trying to evaluate whether there is any merit to that difference. (EDIT: Hint: yes, there is.)
GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

Wow, that is an awful lot of generalising there. Try it again, but with realism this time.
GordonT, revised wrote:In the small part of the United States that I have lived in, visited or had experience with, schools are seem to me to be mostly stupidpopulated by people I think are stupid. Most people who go to the public schools I'm familiar with are have seemed to me, based on my limited experiences with them during school hours, when they may be trying to fit in, show off to friends or enjoy less intellectually focused hobbies than me, to be complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Possibly they care about football because it's a sport that fosters close friendships and allows for fun exercise, and they enjoy friendly competition, or they feel like it's the best way to form close friendships or have something to bond over, when it can be hard, in crappy cultural paradigms, for guys especially to find other socially acceptable hobbies. Possibly the people who care about hair do so because they enjoy aesthetic pursuits, and express themselves through their clothing choices, as a form of personal art. Maybe they care because they are very aware that other teens can be judgmental about appearance, as can the rest of the world - maybe they have internalised the cultural message that looking good will get you ahead in life, and looking bad according to whatever the dominant culture deems bad will get you teased and taunted. Maybe the people who only care about maths to keep their parents happy are far more interested in maths than they want to let on, for fear of being branded an uncool geek, or maybe they are just more interested in the sorts of hobbies and careers not covered by a conventional high school curriculum. Maybe they are more suited to humanities than maths. Maybe their parents are control freaks who need their kids to be high achievers, and they are turned off the school system as a result. Maybe they are pragmatists. Iunno. For some reason I decided not to consider these possibilities, and instead judge without thinking. Then, there are those who like skateboarding, which is a legitimate sport, and smoking weed [which is a whole other debate I'm not even going to touch] and stupidly dressed rockstars who have a fashion sense I personally dislike, who make music that I personally don't like, and therefore am unable to ever see any merit in at all, whether from a lyrical, musical or philosophical perspective. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good - I mean, how on earth could I go through a paragraph this judgmental without somehow insulting people who enjoy music that's different and speak differently to me. I mean, they may not actually be violent thugs, they might just speak with an accent or grammar different to mine, but I want to judge them all based on racist classist stereotypes because it's easy, and it makes me feel so much better than them to use the kind of grammar upper class English speakers approve of!. Their pants are always down, which, as the moral police and the fashion police, I totally disapprove of, because only people who dress in line with my idea of intelligence can be intelligent.

Do you see what the problem is here?
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GordonT » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:41 am UTC

GraphiteGirl wrote:I think you're trying to suggest that there's a lack of intellectual curiosity in the majority of people you know. But your post doesn't say that - what it says is that you have a lack of intellectual curiosity about people who are different from you, and understanding why they are different, and objectively trying to evaluate whether there is any merit to that difference. (EDIT: Hint: yes, there is.)
GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

Wow, that is an awful lot of generalising there. Try it again, but with realism this time.
GordonT, revised wrote:In the small part of the United States that I have lived in, visited or had experience with, schools are seem to me to be mostly stupidpopulated by people I think are stupid. Most people who go to the public schools I'm familiar with are have seemed to me, based on my limited experiences with them during school hours, when they may be trying to fit in, show off to friends or enjoy less intellectually focused hobbies than me, to be complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Possibly they care about football because it's a sport that fosters close friendships and allows for fun exercise, and they enjoy friendly competition, or they feel like it's the best way to form close friendships or have something to bond over, when it can be hard, in crappy cultural paradigms, for guys especially to find other socially acceptable hobbies. Possibly the people who care about hair do so because they enjoy aesthetic pursuits, and express themselves through their clothing choices, as a form of personal art. Maybe they care because they are very aware that other teens can be judgmental about appearance, as can the rest of the world - maybe they have internalised the cultural message that looking good will get you ahead in life, and looking bad according to whatever the dominant culture deems bad will get you teased and taunted. Maybe the people who only care about maths to keep their parents happy are far more interested in maths than they want to let on, for fear of being branded an uncool geek, or maybe they are just more interested in the sorts of hobbies and careers not covered by a conventional high school curriculum. Maybe they are more suited to humanities than maths. Maybe their parents are control freaks who need their kids to be high achievers, and they are turned off the school system as a result. Maybe they are pragmatists. Iunno. For some reason I decided not to consider these possibilities, and instead judge without thinking. Then, there are those who like skateboarding, which is a legitimate sport, and smoking weed [which is a whole other debate I'm not even going to touch] and stupidly dressed rockstars who have a fashion sense I personally dislike, who make music that I personally don't like, and therefore am unable to ever see any merit in at all, whether from a lyrical, musical or philosophical perspective. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good - I mean, how on earth could I go through a paragraph this judgmental without somehow insulting people who enjoy music that's different and speak differently to me. I mean, they may not actually be violent thugs, they might just speak with an accent or grammar different to mine, but I want to judge them all based on racist classist stereotypes because it's easy, and it makes me feel so much better than them to use the kind of grammar upper class English speakers approve of!. Their pants are always down, which, as the moral police and the fashion police, I totally disapprove of, because only people who dress in line with my idea of intelligence can be intelligent.

Do you see what the problem is here?


I know! Okay!?!? It was in the learly hours of the morning and I was emotionally influenced. I'm not Data. I just didn't expect everyone to be so prissy about a random pointless rant. If I wanted to write a damn dissertation on the subject I would have posted on the relevant issues board.

At least you understand what I was getting at, even though I did a terrible job of doing it. I didn't know I was going to be so severely evaluated. HOw about an ice internet pat on the back and an "it's okay, just suck it up" ? That would have been fine!
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby GraphiteGirl » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:52 am UTC

The xkcd forums: we take things seriously when people sound like they're being serious (even if they do so at ungodly hours of the morning, they might still be serious), and don't like it when people are or sound openly elitist and judgmental.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Shivari » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:55 am UTC

GordonT wrote:I just didn't expect everyone to be so prissy about a random pointless rant ... I didn't know I was going to be so severely evaluated.


Maybe you should think twice before you act like a smug elitist and insult everyone who isn't also a smug elitist.

It turns out people dislike that.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby kevmus » Sun Feb 28, 2010 4:00 am UTC

GordonT wrote:I know! Okay!?!? It was in the learly hours of the morning and I was emotionally influenced. I'm not Data. I just didn't expect everyone to be so prissy about a random pointless rant. If I wanted to write a damn dissertation on the subject I would have posted on the relevant issues board.

At least you understand what I was getting at, even though I did a terrible job of doing it. I didn't know I was going to be so severely evaluated. HOw about an ice internet pat on the back and an "it's okay, just suck it up" ? That would have been fine!


The point is that the problem is not everyone else in the world.

If you ever think that you really know everyone you meet and their hopes, dreams, pursuits, talents, and abilities, you're wrong. If you do that and then dismiss them as idiots, then you're an asshole.

I guarantee you that the most stereotypical "hair" person cares about more than just hair.
Just like I hope you care about more than quantum physics (or your academic subject of choice).

Who the hell do you think you are to say that people are worthless idiots based on short interactions with them?

Suck it up, and learn to appreciate people. It'll make you a much happier person in the end, and it will improve you.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby SecondTalon » Sun Feb 28, 2010 6:21 am UTC

GordonT wrote:I know! Okay!?!? It was in the early hours of the morning and I was emotionally influenced. I'm not Data. I just didn't expect everyone to be so prissy about a random pointless rant. If I wanted to write a damn dissertation on the subject I would have posted on the relevant issues board.

At least you understand what I was getting at, even though I did a terrible job of doing it. I didn't know I was going to be so severely evaluated. How about a nice internet pat on the back and an "it's okay, just suck it up" ? That would have been fine!
Why would you expect a nice pat on the back and a "It'll be okay" when you insulted a large portion of the board's population?

Every few months, someone somewhere posts a "People r dum, amirite?" rant. And get spanked for it. Consider it a early education of a lesson you'd probably pick up on your own - people are surprising.
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Sun Feb 28, 2010 12:23 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:Because all I see is a whole bunch of myopic morons meandering amidst the mindless masses that make up the mundane and morally methodical demography, marching mechanically among the macrocosm as messy multitudes of matter, muttering and mumbling without meaning, masking monumental mediocrity with maniacal mitigations.

Well, you've had the burn, so we can share some of the love. First of all, nice alliteration. Secondly, schools are weird constructs that don't reflect reality, so you needn't look too hard into how people behave in them. Foucault argues convincingly that they're akin to prisons. In my experience, they turn perfectly decent people into raging cuntballs. And, in fact, any places where humans gather you get similarly bizarre behaviour: the hairdresser's, pubs, offices, parliament. This doesn't mean that any of those individuals are a write-off, it just means they'll sometimes act unfavourably when they're pushed to perform a certain role. At work, I am a one-dimensional character. There are very few customers and staff I can be myself around. People who made my life miserable at school now invite me to their house and share with me all their beer and food. So, don't be so quick to judge.

And, yeah, football is cool and so is hair. I mean, I don't think about football a lot, but almost every time I look in the mirror I think about hair. Not everything has to be about intellectual pursuits, and it's fine to have interests. For example, did you know, some people on these boards like D&D? Crazy, right? Still, despite this personal handicap, some of them are still decent people. Lovable, almost. And we all know this, which is why everyone got hot on you for implying, "If you like x, you're inferior."
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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby the tree » Sun Feb 28, 2010 1:24 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR!
There is no way I could make this clear enough - everything that you care about, ever have cared about or ever will care about is no less or no more stupid than football and hair. All human concerns are individual, arbitrary and meaningless to any outside concern. You do not get to decide what is interesting or boring to other people, that will never be your call.

GordonT wrote:Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed
Shit man, those things are fun. I'm not saying that you should go out and take drugs (really, don't), but you can't honestly say you don't get why people do.

GordonT wrote:...and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.
What do you wear? Do you go to school in a fucking sackcloth or something? People enjoy wearing clothes that either express themselves or express their membership of a group. Fashion is seriously important and even when you get pissed about it, you are demonstrating what a massive impact it has. You could definitely benefit from some introspection there.

GordonT wrote:Is there any hope?
For you, maybe - but in the meantime cut everyone else a break.

GordonT wrote:How hard is it to care about knowing about the universe and things in it?
Right. Yeah. This is what you need to do. Go talk to someone. Anyone. Whether it's some skater or some cheerleader or some kid with their trackies around their crotch. I can guarantee you that they know a shittone about "the universe and things in it" that you don't. People of all walks basically ooze out passion and love, but for different things - which is helpful since there are so many different things to be passionate about.

Obviously right now, you think that distant things like cosmology or ancient history or whatever it is that you study are somehow better than the things that are in your face every day. That's actually completely understandable, school is hard and it makes you depressed and it seems to really love kicking you when you're down, so the grass on the other side suddenly starts seeming an awful lot greener. But the other people there are having a pretty hard time as well so you may as well lend them a hand (don't expect anything in return, just do it because you can).

The xkcd fora are here to hold your hand and give you a pat on the back and all that junk. But you're also going to receive a fairly forceful shove in the right direction from people who are older than you and have been through all this stuff. Both actions are out of genuine love and concern, honestly. And yeah, we'll get pissed when you're being a bit of a douche, but we wont stop being around when needed.

You are never going to completely understand other people, by the way. That's literally impossible. If you had that much empathy then your brain would explode. The most you will ever find out is what they have to offer and what you have to offer them.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby rigwarl » Sun Feb 28, 2010 3:50 pm UTC

GordonT wrote:In the United States, schools are mostly stupid. Most people who go to public schools are complete idiots. There are the people care about football and HAIR! :) and getting 100% on math tests to make their parents happy. Then, there are those who like skateboarding and smoking weed and stupidly dressed rockstars. Of course, we can't forget those gangstas who be rollin' in duh hood lookin' for a pice a wood to finna SMACK that assmothafucka so good. Their pants are always down.

How hard is it to care about knowing about the universe and things in it????


The people that surround you are much more important than the material taught in your history class. Perhaps you should take your own advice an care about getting to know them, or at least about them.

Someone who cares about football is much less of an idiot than someone who cares about him caring about football, IMO.

Now if your point is that the majority of people you meet are not as intellectual as you, sure. No matter how good/smart/awesome ANY distribution of population is, there will always be a top 1% (of course, you already knew that, right? :P). Instead of complaining about being in that top%, be thankful. Even your revised rant comes off as "man, I wish I were one of those people I complained about so I could hang out with people like myself". I think that's a bit silly.

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Re: Schools of Fools

Postby gmalivuk » Sun Feb 28, 2010 4:32 pm UTC

Pez Dispens3r wrote:And, yeah, football is cool and so is hair. I mean, I don't think about football a lot, but almost every time I look in the mirror I think about hair. Not everything has to be about intellectual pursuits, and it's fine to have interests. For example, did you know, some people on these boards like D&D? Crazy, right? Still, despite this personal handicap, some of them are still decent people. Lovable, almost. And we all know this, which is why everyone got hot on you for implying, "If you like x, you're inferior."

What I always think about when someone brings up stereotypes about sports or hair or whatever, are some of the absolute nerds I've known who were into things like that.

There's already been a list of some science nerds who were also high achievers in sports, and when I did math and physics tutoring for the University of Michigan's athletic department, I commonly came across someone who was working on something hard like differential equations or abstract algebra despite being there on a basketball scholarship. Niels Bohr and his brother were both scientists and excellent soccer players. Niels was somewhat better at science, having won the Nobel but never playing on Denmark's national team, while his brother was somewhat better at sports, and was on the 1908 silver medal team at the Olympics. And if you think for a second that sitting on your ass and thinking about the universe requires more brain activity than being a good athlete, you evidently don't know as much science as you think.

On the hair side, I think of people right here on the board like parkaboy, who probably knows a hell of a lot more than you ever will about both reptiles and hairdressing. Or a French woman I taught English to who was attracted to cosmetology from the scientific side of it, and switched her major from organic chemistry.
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