Monday, February 2, 2009

The Real Problem With The Education System


In my mind, it goes back to an earlier article that I wrote. We are sending young folk (they aren’t kids any more, but they sure aren’t truly adult yet) off to school at eighteen with no real experience other than sucking mama’s tit. They thrash around for a couple of years and then get spit out as educated fools.

Let’s consider a really obvious example here. West Point. This is a school that takes in eighteen-year olds, indoctrinates them into believing that they will soon be water walkers, gives them book learning on strategy and tactics, and lets them hone their “leadership” skills by bullying underclassmen. All in the name of tradition.

Now, I know that I have some military types reading this, so I am here to tell you that in my experience, it is a rare ring-knocker that doesn’t have to have sense kicked into him by a crusty senior NCO. They come out from an insular, artificial mockery of a military society and think as such they can “lead” real troops. Hell, they even have “leadership” classes, thinking that this is a skill that can be taught. The real problem with them is the way that they form they the equivalent of a “Skull and Bones” society within our military.

ROTC isn’t really much different. But they do have the advantage of not being elitist pukes like most Pointers. By having contact with real folk, they usually turn out more human and for my money, better officers.

But let’s talk about mustangs. The officers that came up through the ranks. These are my favorites. They carry around their own inner sergeant. They know how the world really works. They are the best leaders. Men die for them because the men know that these guys are usually there to win the battle, and if they had to send men off to die there is a damn good reason for it.

So what I am thinking is that we have to change our education from a system where the best schools are reserved for the rich and the well-connected to a system where adults (lets say; 24 YO or in the case of West Point, a full enlistment in the Combat Arms) are selected because they have shown themselves to be worthy of advancement.

I realize that his probably won’t happen, but it is nice to think about.


tweell said...

As a Navy retired enlisted, here's my two cents. The Naval Academy grads were either excellent or terrible, no inbetween. The College ROTC boys were generally mediocre to decent, not that many excellent in the mix (but no terrible). The mustangs were good to excellent, but since they connected better with enlisted than with officers, they were hind tit when it came to advancement. The Academy boys look after each other, so they promote the fastest.
My last commander (O5) was a mustang (highest I've ever seen), he was a E8 before switching over. His philosophy: "You take care of me, I'll take care of you." We did, and he did.

Mayberry said...

For the reasons you mentioned, I pretty much regard colleges as "dink factories". What they turn out are "elitist" attitude NUBs (Non Useable Bodies) who then have to be reprogrammed to reality. My favorites are the Masters and PHDs, 30 years old (or more) and never had a real job in their lives. Useless......

Also being former Navy enlisted, I favored the mustangs (LDO, Limited Duty Officer). My division officer was an LDO, lieutenant, and prior to that he was an Interior Communications Senior Chief. Great guy, knew his stuff, and took care of us. This pissed off the academy puke Lt. chief engineer, who "fired" our DivO, and replaced him with a NUB Lt.J.G who didn't know his ass from a hole in the ground.

Our division Master Chief (24 years in) refused to salute the little prick, and when the J.G. gave him grief about it, Master Chief told him "Go home and tell yer Mama you saw a REAL sailor today"! HA! I loved it.....