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One university in the fall

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The following, dated June 17, 2020, is from the Letter regarding MIT's initial decisions about the fall by Rafael Reif, an immigrant from Venezuela and the current president of M.I.T.

... campus life will feel very different this fall. These changes will include:

  •     Mandatory Covid-19 testing before return and regularly thereafter

  •     Mandatory public-health education

  •     Daily health attestations via an app or website

  •     Mandatory wearing of masks

  •     Physical distancing

  •     Contact tracing

  •     Staggered scheduling and reconfigured work spaces

  •     Enhanced cleaning protocols

  •     Access to buildings through a single point and only with an MIT ID

  •     No large gatherings or lectures

  •     Much less travel


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9 hours ago, Mark said:

...campus life will feel very different this fall. These changes will include:

Total word fail, I am so disgusted.

I wonder if the University of Hartford is going to do crud like that too.  And many other schools.  I mean, if MIT's doing it, lemming parade, here we come.

Fortunately, Larry's on sabbatical next year, and maybe some semblance of rationality will have returned to academe by the following year. (Note the "some semblance of rationality."  There's only been a semblance for many years.)


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I don't know how intertwined the MIT Press is with the university itself, but I think it might be the same. It launched a series of short books that look like they sprang from the bowels of the soul of a person who could come up with Reif's plan above. (I stumbled across this series thinking it might be interesting for an informed overview of many topics. Heh...)

This series is pure suck-up to crony globalist corporatism. The books (and audiobooks) are purposely short. They are aimed at producing "instant experts" on a series of topics within the hustle and bustle of the information age, but also to provide them with the correct Big Brother way of thinking about things.

This series is called the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series (68 books). It is a horror show of actual information couched in the most blatant ruling class progressive Obama-style propaganda jargon and slanted hard toward one-world ruling class globalism. Even some of the subjects chosen as "essential knowledge" show this bent toward indoctrination.

Here are a few titles with quotes from the blurbs as examples.

Contraception: A Concise History by Donna J. Drucker: "The development, manufacturing, and use of contraceptive methods from the late nineteenth century to the present, viewed from the perspective of reproductive justice."

Macroeconomics by Felipe Larraín Bascuñán: "Readers will gain the tools to interpret such economic events as the 2008 financial meltdown, the subsequent euro crisis, and the current protectionist dynamics seen in some developed countries."

Collaborative Society by Dariusz Jemielniak and Aleksandra Przegalinska: "The book covers the “sharing economy,” and the hijacking of the term by corporations; different models of peer production, and motivations to participate; collaborative media production and consumption, the definitions of “amateur” and “professional,” and the power of memes; hactivism and social movements, including Anonymous and anti-ACTA protest; collaborative knowledge creation, including citizen science; collaborative self-tracking; and internet-mediated social relations, as seen in the use of Instagram, Snapchat, and Tinder. Finally, the book considers the future of these collaborative tendencies and the disruptions caused by fake news, bots, and other challenges."

(By "fake news," these authors are not talking about CNN & Co. 🙂  )

Citizenship by Dimitry Kochenov: "The story of citizenship as a tale not of liberation, dignity, and nationhood but of complacency, hypocrisy, and domination. The glorification of citizenship is a given in today's world, part of a civic narrative that invokes liberation, dignity, and nationhood. In reality, explains Dimitry Kochenov, citizenship is a story of complacency, hypocrisy, and domination, flattering to citizens and demeaning for noncitizens."

Recycling by Finn Arne Jørgensen: "Jørgensen offers an accessible and engaging overview of recycling as an activity and as a process at the intersection of the material and the ideological. Jørgensen follows a series of materials as they move back and forth between producer and consumer, continually transforming in form and value, in a never-ceasing journey toward becoming waste. He considers organic waste and cultural contamination...  ... re-asking the question posed by John Tierney in an infamous 1996 New York Times article, “is recycling garbage?” Jørgensen argues that recycling is necessary—as both symbolic action and physical activity that has a tangible effect on the real world."

Sexual Consent by Milena Popova: "This volume in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series offers a nuanced introduction to sexual consent by a writer who is both a scholar and an activist on this issue. ... This book presents key strands of feminist thought on the subject of sexual consent from across academic and activist communities and covers the history of research on consent in such fields as psychology and feminist legal studies. ... It examines how popular culture, including pornography, romance fiction, and sex advice manuals, shapes our ideas of consent; explores the communities at the forefront of consent activism; and considers what meaningful social change in this area might look like. Going beyond the conventional cisgender, heterosexual norm..."

Food by Fabio Parasecoli: "Parasecoli describes a system made up of open-ended, shifting, and unstable networks rather than well-defined chains; considers healthy food and the contradictory advice about it consumers receive; discusses food waste and the implications for sustainability; explores food technologies (and “culinary luddism”); and examines hunger and food insecurity in both developing and developed countries. Parasecoli reminds us that we are not only consumers but also citizens..."

Extremism by J. M. Berger: "Berger illustrates his argument with case studies and examples from around the world and throughout history, from the destruction of Carthage by the Romans—often called “the first genocide”—to the apocalyptic jihadism of Al Qaeda, America's new “alt-right,” and the anti-Semitic conspiracy tract The Protocols of the Elders of Zion."

(The trick here is to put "alt right" next to Al Qaeda and The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. There is no space for criticism of left-wing zealots. 🙂 )

Post-Truth by Lee McIntyre: "What, exactly, is post-truth? Is it wishful thinking, political spin, mass delusion, bold-faced lying? McIntyre analyzes recent examples—claims about inauguration crowd size, crime statistics, and the popular vote—and finds that post-truth is an assertion of ideological supremacy by which its practitioners try to compel someone to believe something regardless of the evidence. Yet post-truth didn't begin with the 2016 election; the denial of scientific facts about smoking, evolution, vaccines, and climate change offers a road map for more widespread fact denial."

(This one gets President Trump, climate change and vaccines all in one shot. 🙂 )

Sustainability by Kent E. Portney: "Portney looks at political opposition to the promotion of sustainability, which usually questions the need for sustainability or calls its costs unacceptable; collective and individual consumption of material goods and resources and to what extent they must be curtailed to achieve sustainability; the role of the private sector, and the co-opting of sustainability by corporations; government policy on sustainability at the international, national, and subnational levels; and how cities could become models for sustainability action."

Memes in Digital Culture by Limor Shifman: "In this book, Limor Shifman investigates Internet memes and what they tell us about digital culture. Shifman discusses a series of well-known Internet memes -- including "Leave Britney Alone," the pepper-spraying cop, LOLCats, Scumbag Steve, and Occupy Wall Street's "We Are the 99 Percent." She offers a novel definition of Internet memes: digital content units with common characteristics, created with awareness of each other, and circulated, imitated, and transformed via the Internet by many users. She differentiates memes from virals; analyzes what makes memes and virals successful; describes popular meme genres; discusses memes as new modes of political participation in democratic and nondemocratic regimes; and examines memes as agents of globalization."

A while back, I bought this book on memes, not because I was interested in the MIT series. (I stumbled across the series as a series much later.) It just looked like a book from a scientific bent on memes and I was trying to figure out the principles of what caused memes to spread. But as I read the book, I kept thinking it was so beside the point, even though the author mentioned a lot of popular memes. Now I know why. "Memes as agents of globalization" is a beauty. Framed right, that could become a meme itself. 🙂  

There are a few books that look politically neutral like one on neuroplasticity seems to be, but this crap is unbelievable.

And it's all out in plain sight.

Man, do we need a concerted effort at a culture war. Look what these assholes did while everybody was busy working and raising families and not paying attention to this cancer.

I would never recommend a student go to MIT.

This institution may have started out as a Robert Stadler project, but now it has rotted into pure Floyd Ferris.


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2 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

This institution may have started out as a Robert Stadler project, but now it has rotted into pure Floyd Ferris.

MIT was the gold standard in technology and math.  I don't know what's going on there in math.  Can math become politicized?  I suppose so,  What's happened to MIT in technology is just so painful, I want to cry thinking about it.


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