Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Toilet degrees

There's yet another growing problem in America. Yes, another one. There's an niche of blogging know collectively as "toilet law" which first made me aware of the situation. The basic problem isn't, however, limited to law schools. It's caused by the rise of for-profit educational institutions feeding on the student loans the federal government is so freely handing out. These schools of higher but not "hire" learning are all too glad to welcome loan-qualifying students and saddle them with crippling mountains of debt by graduation day. Debt that these ex-students can't pay back because—surprise—the jobs they were "guaranteed" all along don't exist.
Jackson filed for bankruptcy last year, listing $99,000 in student loans, the majority to pay for Brooks College. Unemployed, she lives on $725 a month, according to court records. In her most recent position, she earned $13.24 an hour, working in a call center for a credit union.
Jackson’s testimony was “credible” that she couldn’t find work in graphic arts because the degree from Brooks was “of little value in securing employment,” Bankruptcy Court Judge Walter Shapero wrote in his August opinion. He noted that Brooks was the defendant in a class-action suit, alleging that students were misled about employment prospects, salaries and the quality of career services. Career Education settled the suit in 2008 for $12.2 million, and Jackson received $2,750, the judge wrote. Career Education has since closed Brooks.

What the hell kind of legal education system are we running where we charge people more than they can afford to get a legal education, and then prevent them from being lawyers because they can’t pay off their debts?
Above The Law

Meanwhile, in tangentially related news...
A lawyer charged with dropping his pants while counseling two 19-year-old men on Friday says he exposed himself as part of a mentoring program to help at-risk youths.

A few days ago I posted a link to a “Chinese mother”. It seems I'm not the only one who thinks she's an arrogant cunt:
What Ms. Chua does not seem to understand is my commitment to being a Koala Mother is not because I'm afraid of being a Tiger Mother. It's because I think Tiger Mothers are self-absorbed narcissists. They have serious problems with boundary issues; apparently they think that their children are extensions of themselves, and exist to advertise the superiority of their Tiger Mothers.

Oh boy. It seems that Oprah protégé Dr. Mehmet Oz is really jumping off the deep end on his TV show. Here’s Martin Gardner on Oz:
It is not widely known that Oz has been profoundly influenced by Emanuel Swedenborg, a Swedish Protestant fundamentalist who, late in life, became a spiritualist and Sweden’s most famous trance medium. In the November/December 2007 issue of Spirituality and Health, a glossy bimonthly devoted to New Age topics, Oz coauthored an article titled “Mehmet Oz Finds His Teacher,” about how his wife Lisa introduced him to the theology of Swedenborg. (Lisa, by the way, is a Reiki Master. Reiki is a Japanese form of alternative medicine developed by a Buddhist monk.)

I leave you with The Battle Hymn of Sarah Palin:
And when she gets to Washington / It'll be cold as hell
They almost got it right. The lyrics should be "It'll be a cold day in Hell before Sarah Palin gets to Washington."

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