Fast on the heels of publishing “And the World Was Made Right” (Rule of Reason, April 23), which has had an incredible and positive response from many quarters, I happened to read Cliff Kincaid’s review of Michael Walsh’s The Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the West on AIM’s site (Accuracy in Media). The review is titled “Defunding the Marxist Madrassas.”
|Mortar boards on freshly minted flatheads|
Kincaid’s review of the Walsh book opens with some richly deserved swipes at Noam Chomsky, the MIT professor of everything under the sun. For decades, the name, “Noam Chomsky,” for me, at least, has evoked the image of a leftist college professor instructing his student victims to “thoroughly chew” his latest theory – say, of Cognitive closure, or of Psychological nativism, or of Recursion in language -- until they can memorize it and recite it back to him verbatim (preferably in a choral mode). That is, after all, the nature of an Islamic madrassa – to memorize – not to understand or critique the Koran and other Islamic texts – until one’s mind is completely subverted by masses of illogic and non sequiturs and one is no longer able to think. Once one has memorized by rote every little comma, simile, and metaphor of the Koran, one is ready to join the Taliban (Islamic students) to kill and terrorize.
And that is, more or less, what American students of Chomsky (and students of his ilk elsewhere in academia) to go out and do: become activists for Socialism, Social Justice, to Occupy Wall Street, occupy your home, occupy your business, and become the snowflakes for “safe places” and the hoarse hollerers for women’s restrooms being open to transgenders and LGBTs of every stripe. And also become advocates and demonstrators for Muslim immigration and trigger-warning sensitive freshmen.
Noam Chomsky, a Marxist professor who says he has been at MIT for 65 years, maintains that we need a new economic system. He has endorsed something called “the next system,” which is supposed to replace free enterprise capitalism. My counter-proposal is for a “next system” to replace Chomsky and other Marxists in academia. My old friend, “Jimmy from Brooklyn,” a legendary anti-communist, says what we need is the defunding of the “Marxist Madrassas,” otherwise known as college and universities.
The “next system” appears to be the total collectivization of the country, and especially of the realm of education. Here, at Alternet, is Chomsky caught with his socialist pants down:
An initial signatory to the Next System statement, Chomsky explores the connections between culture, mass movements, and economic experiments—which in “mutually reinforcing” interaction, may build toward a next system more quickly than you may think.
Next System Project: As the Next System Project engages in dozens of university campus-based teach-ins across the country, what do you think of such approaches to engaging campus communities in deep, critical inquiry—can they help transform our society?
Doubtless Chomsky applauds Bernie Sanders, the socialist presidential candidate. But perhaps he instead regards Sanders as a doddering, buffoonish, semi-senile old fool suffering from genuine cognitive closure. That would be a fair assessment of the failure in carpentry.
And here is statement by “the next system,” a statement that dances around the term “socialism” and is an instance of sociological puffery:
We are at or near the bottom among advanced democracies across a score of key indicators of national well-being—including relative poverty, inequality, education, social mobility, health, environment, militarization, democracy, and more.
We have fundamental problems because of fundamental flaws in our economic and political system. The crisis now unfolding in so many ways across our country amounts to a systemic crisis.
Today’s political economic system is not programmed to secure the wellbeing of people, place and planet. Instead, its priorities are corporate profits, the growth of GDP, and the projection of national power.
Large-scale system change is needed but has until recently been constrained by a continuing lack of imagination concerning social, economic and political alternatives. There are alternatives that can lead to the systemic change we need.
Kincaid goes on:
Of course, Chomsky does not want to replace the system that pays his salary and provides a platform for his Marxism. A real alternative to the current economic system would take the taxpayers off the hook for subsidizing state colleges and universities that keep Marxists like Chomsky on the payroll and undermine traditional values.
It is said that Chomsky is a “philosopher, linguist, and social critic.” Whatever this means, it looks like he has more time to spout his Marxism than to teach his students anything worthwhile. Perhaps that is his intention. By failing to educate students in practical skills useful for real jobs, he leaves them hopeless and despondent about the system that he wants them to replace. His students are his cannon fodder for “the next system,” which is supposed to be brought into being by students who are turned into activists through brainwashing sessions organized by the likes of Chomsky.
Michael Walsh, as Kincaid reveals, offers a truly radical solution to today’s college “crisis” and the unimaginable debt assumed by college students and by the taxpayer: scrap the Ivy Leagues, state colleges, and community colleges, put the Marxists out of work, and patronize the plethora of existing and future online universities each of which would offer tuition costs infinitesimally lower than the standard costs of about $20,000 per year.
Average, semi-literate college student,
now smothered in Federal kudzu debt
Michael Walsh is the latest to document the influence of cultural Marxism in academia and American society at large. His book, The Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the West, examines how American institutions have been taken over by the likes of Chomsky. The solution, however, cannot rest simply with exposure or even reform. The cultural Marxists will not cede power over the minds of the young. Instead, the solution is to establish new institutions that attract parents and young people to educational alternatives which promise marketable skills and jobs in the real economy.
Those alternatives are usually grouped under the rubric of online learning. These low-cost alternatives to brick-and-mortar colleges and universities can also address another pressing problem for many young people—massive college debt through federal loans that in 40 percent of the cases are not repaid. The current federal student loan debt stands at a staggering $1.2 trillion. The current system is unsustainable.
It is unfortunately true that many of these online or vocational schools are already in hock to or dependent on federal and government financing schemes for their students (such as Kaplan and ECPI). The ultimate solution is to get the government out of education altogether.
Judging by the success of Sanders in the presidential race, it would appear that the real crisis is that higher education has failed to prepare young people for the future and has instead left them struggling to pay tens of billions of dollars in student loan debt. However, those turning out for Sanders have been led to believe that more taxes and debt are the solution. This approach leaves Marxists like Chomsky, still ensconced in academia, agitating for the “next system” of socialism that will leave young people even more hopeless.
Even if their debts are “forgiven,” and the federal debt monkey is off their backs, most of these students will be ill-prepared to live independent, productive lives in the real world. Kincaid writes:
This process of subversion has been going on too long to hope for reform of the academic institutions that have been captured and rotted from within. We need to defund those that already exist, and create new institutions to replace those in the hands of the cultural Marxists. Some of them are online structures such as Amberton University and Western Governors University.
My friend "Jimmy from Brooklyn" says we need to go further, in regard to existing colleges and universities, and demand a "separation of Marx and state," so that affirmative action for conservative professors can be implemented to strive for some sort of equality and real "diversity."
Michael Walsh’s The Devil’s Pleasure Palace is a must read for anyone who is concerned about the costs and the direction of higher education. Today, in America, “higher” education more often than not means brainwashing on psychedelic drugs of the Marxist kind.
Academics like Noam Chomsky should be put out to pasture with Bernie Sanders before they destroy more minds.
The Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the West, by Michael Walsh. Jackson, TN: Encounter Books, 2015. 280 pp.