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Thread: Sometimes I wish

  1. #1

    Sometimes I wish

    That Everyone has to some kind manual labor just for a least a week or once and while to understand and have appreciation for people who do such jobs also to get a little humility.

    Every university student at least in the science take courses in other fields so they can understand what is going in in the other fields.
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  2. #2
    Also I wish proof read more often it is suppose to be "Sometimes I wish" in the title.
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  3. #3
    Part of of this because there are some people who lack some or a lot of knowledge outside there given field don't really care like physicists who go around supporting creationism really knowing what evolution is, or people who are doctors or claim to be healers of some kind start talking about quantum mechanics. Plus there are some people who think they are better than others just because they work with their mind over muscles.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    That Everyone has to some kind manual labor just for a least a week or once and while to understand and have appreciation for people who do such jobs also to get a little humility.

    Every university student at least in the science take courses in other fields so they can understand what is going in in the other fields.
    A good idea. Just as we (nominally) teach art, music, and literature as well as STEM and language, we need a broader curriculum of life skills and experiences in our educational systems. Especially in a democracy where the knowledge and views of the average voter determine so much.

    Unfortunately it's unlikely to be instituted anytime soon. Politics.
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  5. #5
    Totally agree. People who preach about organic foods should work both on an organic farm and A farm with modern practices. I Think people should see things from a different perspective then they normally do.
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    We can't hope to give everybody practical experience of all aspects of a complex society. (Though we could arrange for everyone to spend a week doing some heavy lifting, I'm sure.)
    However we do seem to be raising a generation of school-children who have been taught that their ill-informed opinions are valid and interesting, because apparently developing self-esteem (no matter how unjustified) is nowadays a lot more important than actually learning to tell fact from fiction. What a surprise that some of these children, in adulthood, are happy to spout any old nonsense on any topic that takes their fancy.
    If we reverted to the hopelessly outmoded system in which teachers told children clearly when they were talking [frightful nonsense] and encouraged them to not speak again until they knew what they were talking about, the world would be a happier place.
    Well, I'd be a happier person, at least.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    We can't hope to give everybody practical experience of all aspects of a complex society. (Though we could arrange for everyone to spend a week doing some heavy lifting, I'm sure.)
    However we do seem to be raising a generation of school-children who have been taught that their ill-informed opinions are valid and interesting, because apparently developing self-esteem (no matter how unjustified) is nowadays a lot more important than actually learning to tell fact from fiction. What a surprise that some of these children, in adulthood, are happy to spout any old nonsense on any topic that takes their fancy.
    If we reverted to the hopelessly outmoded system in which teachers told children clearly when they were talking [frightful nonsense] and encouraged them to not speak again until they knew what they were talking about, the world would be a happier place.
    Well, I'd be a happier person, at least.

    Grant Hutchison
    I think part of the problem is that the psychological concept of "self esteem" has been publicly simplified and dumbed down to mean "feeling good all the time" and that kids can always or even accurately judge how much esteem they have. Human Minds Do Not Work That Way.
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    We can't hope to give everybody practical experience of all aspects of a complex society.
    Completely agree. I actually find that idea kind of annoying. You'll have people who will say you shouldn't eat meat unless you can show you know how to hunt and butcher game (for example). However, I don't recall any instances where someone says you shouldn't use polymers unless you can demonstrate you know how to make the catalyst supports for the reactions that make them. Why does this requirement only work in one direction?

    However we do seem to be raising a generation of school-children who have been taught that their ill-informed opinions are valid and interesting, because apparently developing self-esteem (no matter how unjustified) is nowadays a lot more important than actually learning to tell fact from fiction. What a surprise that some of these children, in adulthood, are happy to spout any old nonsense on any topic that takes their fancy.
    I've wondered about this quite a bit. I completely agree that adults spouting nonsense opinions as if they are as important as facts has increased (thanks Internet). I'm not sure if it is a case where there there is an increase in people believing their own ill-formed opinions, or they have always had these beliefs, and they just think it is now more acceptable to spout them. If I had to chose, I would say it is the later case.
    Last edited by Swift; 2018-Apr-18 at 03:00 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    That Everyone has to some kind manual labor just for a least a week or once and while to understand and have appreciation for people who do such jobs also to get a little humility.
    I agree that humility and appreciation for the work that others do is important. But is that how someone gets such an appreciation? I appreciate the work of lots of people, even those who I have never attempted their job.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    Also I wish proof read more often it is suppose to be "Sometimes I wish" in the title.
    Easy peasy.
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    I have had similar thoughts in my lifetime. Like having those bods with telephone numbers salaries being transported up to east anglia from London for two or three days a week to help the farmers. Might have helped stopped the financial crash ten years ago. But looking back, I remember my apprenticeship in a naval dockyard where my training involved having a few weeks in all departments to understand it all. I did not stay with them but I have fond memories. My college time had an annoying factor though. Some time was taken up with "liberal studies". I would not have had to do night school if that nonsence was not there. It was an attempt to produce well rounded people after concerns about "the two cultures". One C P Snow started this off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I've wondered about this quite a bit. I completely agree that adults spouting nonsense opinions as if they are as important as facts has increased (thanks Internet). I'm not sure if it is a case where there there is an increase in people believing their own ill-formed opinions, or they have always had these beliefs, and they just think it is now more acceptable to spout them. If I had to chose, I would say it is the later case.
    I know an awful lot of people of the generation supposedly taught that all opinions are valid, and they've all also been taught, at least in theory, the difference between fact and opinion. They may have respect for others' beliefs about, say, movies or books, but they're much less inclined to have respect for denial of fact than some of their elders.

    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I agree that humility and appreciation for the work that others do is important. But is that how someone gets such an appreciation? I appreciate the work of lots of people, even those who I have never attempted their job.
    I appreciate the work of the people who make my life possible, be it the people who grow my food or the people who designed my TV or anyone else. I do think that it might help people to do some work in the service industry to understand that those are not easy jobs and that they're incredibly high pressure in a lot of ways; I also think that a lot of STEM majors need an understanding of the value of the liberal arts. I'd be subject to fewer badly written screeds about how they're the easy option that way, I'm sure--at very least, they'd be well written screeds with proper grammar?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    <snip>
    I also think that a lot of STEM majors need an understanding of the value of the liberal arts. I'd be subject to fewer badly written screeds about how they're the easy option that way, I'm sure--at very least, they'd be well written screeds with proper grammar?
    Absolutely.

    But the Liberal Arts majors also need to take some serious science course.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    I know an awful lot of people of the generation supposedly taught that all opinions are valid, and they've all also been taught, at least in theory, the difference between fact and opinion. They may have respect for others' beliefs about, say, movies or books, but they're much less inclined to have respect for denial of fact than some of their elders.
    Yeah, the onset of empty bluster and wishful thinking about things we don't like or don't understand is a common trajectory for those in late middle age. So we'll need to wait a while to see how today's younger generation turn out when they reach that age themselves. I suspect they'll be much the same. In my part of the world, my generation started adulthood with the crippling lack of self-confidence that was deemed appropriate for our age and station, and (with a bit of luck) incrementally grew in confidence with experience. Working with the students who were in training before I retired suggested to me that they many were gradually losing confidence as they gained experience, and that they "bottomed out" (with a bit of luck) several years after graduation. That's a pretty miserable (and quite embittering) trajectory.

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    I remember, as an undergraduate student, how my liberal arts pals hated the thought of having to take a required math class.

    However, it's not as if I couldn't sympathize, as I was looking for an easy way out with the required philosophy and theology courses.

    I didn't absorb very much in those actual classes, but they did force me to read some books for which I'm grateful in retrospect.

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    I think maybe the OP is suggesting that some people think they are better than others because they do not do manual laboring jobs. I think this is often true, some people often form opinions about a person based on their profession. A good late friend of mine was the most academically intelligent person I have ever met, a gifted mathematician and excellent literacy skills with a wealth of general knowledge. He worked as a "roofer", out in all weather repairing tile and asphalt roof coverings. I was intrigued why he had chosen to do such a labor intensive physically demanding and detrimental job? When his skill set was so high and versatile he could have easily have done a highly paid academic profession instead. He simply answered "This work humbles me".

    I've had the good fortune to have experienced both sides of the spectrum in my life so far. From hand digging holes for sewerage drains in all kinds of weather day in day out to designing and project managing multi million pound architectural engineering jobs. So I have and currently do sit behind a desk doing I.T using just my brain, but I also spent just as much time on the tools working all the hours hard graft. This allows me to be able to appreciate the fruits of anyone's efforts, be it a million dollar deal or a six foot hole dug.

    My father always advocated hard work when you are young and work your way up so you can have a comfortable life when you are older. This is the old cliche - you get nowhere in this life without hard work. Though not strictly true, there are many folk who are lazy and blag their way in life and often reap the fruits of other's hard work and efforts. Some folk are born into wealth, others are fortunate enough to gain it through luck.

    I think fundamentally the concept of experiencing hard work is good for a person, for their mind and their soul and good for society in general. There has to be a balance, some folk have to labor some folk have to manage this is all part of a well oiled machine of society. But people should appreciate that all the parts are needed for it to work and sometimes some parts have to adapt to fit or fill in when a part is missing or broken.

    My opinion is that all folk (if physically capable & medically capable) should experience some form of hard labor from time to time, even if its just to remind them that the machine needs more than just the operator for it to work.

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    That was the original purpose of the TV show Dirty Jobs. The tagline was that they showed viewers "the folks who make civilized life possible for the rest of us".

    The later seasons got away from that premise IMO. They started to focus on more exotic or novelty jobs.
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    I worked in a grocery store while an undergraduate.I think I learned more about life there.

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    I had no option but to do a succession of heavy lifting and service industry jobs while at university. But I don't think I got much more insight into life as a result, because I come from a background in which that's what people do for a living.

    The people on my course who really might have gained some insight were, of course, the people who came from a completely different background - but they often had enough funds that they didn't need to work to keep them in provisions and transport.

    This was brought home to me one day when I and one of my fellow-students were attached to a General Practitioner making house calls. Our first visit was to a family in one of the housing schemes on the outskirts of the city. My fellow-student kept sniffing all the time we were in this house, and then burst into tears as soon as we'd left. "My god," she whispered to me. "These poor people had nothing."
    And I'd been thinking it reminded me of home, except with a bigger TV. That was a rather formative moment for me.

    Grant Hutchison
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    Note:
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Absolutely.

    But the Liberal Arts majors also need to take some serious science course.
    The difference, to me, is that these days, the liberal arts majors keep being treated as less important. There's an attitude these days that the arts are unimportant and that the only thing that matters is STEM studies. How often have you heard people say that an English major is worthless? But not only do people with English majors teach you how to organize your thoughts so anyone else can understand, there are many, many jobs you can do with an English major beyond that and many higher degrees where an English major is a perfectly reasonable undergraduate degree.
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    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I had no option but to do a succession of heavy lifting and service industry jobs while at university. But I don't think I got much more insight into life as a result, because I come from a background in which that's what people do for a living.

    The people on my course who really might have gained some insight were, of course, the people who came from a completely different background - but they often had enough funds that they didn't need to work to keep them in provisions and transport.

    This was brought home to me one day when I and one of my fellow-students were attached to a General Practitioner making house calls. Our first visit was to a family in one of the housing schemes on the outskirts of the city. My fellow-student kept sniffing all the time we were in this house, and then burst into tears as soon as we'd left. "My god," she whispered to me. "These poor people had nothing."
    And I'd been thinking it reminded me of home, except with a bigger TV. That was a rather formative moment for me.

    Grant Hutchison

    Wow. A very good example. Thank you !

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    The difference, to me, is that these days, the liberal arts majors keep being treated as less important. There's an attitude these days that the arts are unimportant and that the only thing that matters is STEM studies. How often have you heard people say that an English major is worthless? But not only do people with English majors teach you how to organize your thoughts so anyone else can understand, there are many, many jobs you can do with an English major beyond that and many higher degrees where an English major is a perfectly reasonable undergraduate degree.
    I have heard it many times, and many times over the years (often it corresponds to downturns in the economy). And I always disagree with that opinion. To me the goal of all humans (once basic needs like shelter, food, water, love are met) should be a well-rounded education, involving both the arts and the sciences, and to continue that education in some way throughout your life.

    I loved my liberal arts and soft science courses. I still love enjoying art and music and dance and literature; the world is a much more horrible place without them.

    But again, it should work both ways. If you are an artist or an actor or a business person, you should have some basic understanding of, and maybe an interest in, at least some aspects of the sciences.
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    John Adams:

    I must study politics and war, that our sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. Our sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry and porcelain.

  24. #24
    I had more access to journal articles rather than just the abstracts.
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  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    The difference, to me, is that these days, the liberal arts majors keep being treated as less important. There's an attitude these days that the arts are unimportant and that the only thing that matters is STEM studies. How often have you heard people say that an English major is worthless? But not only do people with English majors teach you how to organize your thoughts so anyone else can understand, there are many, many jobs you can do with an English major beyond that and many higher degrees where an English major is a perfectly reasonable undergraduate degree.
    Sometimes it is more the volume of liberal arts majors compared to STEM fields.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Mendenhall View Post
    Wow. A very good example. Thank you !
    And we're not talking a peasant hovel with a mud floor. We visited a small flat that was a bit shabby and worn, inhabited by polite and grateful people. There are lots of little things people do to prolong the life of their carpets, paintwork and furnishings if they know they're not going to be able to buy replacements any time soon, and all those everyday, house-proud details were what chimed with me during my visit. That anyone could mistake this for "having nothing" was a real revelation to me.
    Unfortunately (in my view), the potential for someone from my background getting into medical school in the UK these days is much, much lower than it was in my day.

    Grant Hutchison
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    Note:
    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I had no option but to do a succession of heavy lifting and service industry jobs while at university. But I don't think I got much more insight into life as a result, because I come from a background in which that's what people do for a living.

    The people on my course who really might have gained some insight were, of course, the people who came from a completely different background - but they often had enough funds that they didn't need to work to keep them in provisions and transport.

    This was brought home to me one day when I and one of my fellow-students were attached to a General Practitioner making house calls. Our first visit was to a family in one of the housing schemes on the outskirts of the city. My fellow-student kept sniffing all the time we were in this house, and then burst into tears as soon as we'd left. "My god," she whispered to me. "These poor people had nothing."
    And I'd been thinking it reminded me of home, except with a bigger TV. That was a rather formative moment for me.

    Grant Hutchison
    So by coming from an average background like the majority you were fortunate enough to experience "real life" - what is considered hardships to some is normal to most. I don't begrudge privileged back grounds, but it certainly can disconnect some folk from reality. You can see this from those horrid reality tv programs featuring the likes of people like the Kardasians & Ecclestons they have no clue about hardship and working your way through life. These are the folk who really do need to experience labor intensive work just to get an understanding that those $1000 designer shoes they have in abundance in their walk in wardrobes have to be made by people living in the "real world" somewhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    And we're not talking a peasant hovel with a mud floor. We visited a small flat that was a bit shabby and worn, inhabited by polite and grateful people. There are lots of little things people do to prolong the life of their carpets, paintwork and furnishings if they know they're not going to be able to buy replacements any time soon, and all those everyday, house-proud details were what chimed with me during my visit. That anyone could mistake this for "having nothing" was a real revelation to me.
    Unfortunately (in my view), the potential for someone from my background getting into medical school in the UK these days is much, much lower than it was in my day.

    Grant Hutchison
    many years back i worked for a period as a self-employed repair and maintenance man. This came about because I'd recently been made redundant and while looking for a job decided I wasn't going to laze about waiting. Anyhow during this period I worked at many homes of people from different walks of life, multi millionaires to struggling single parents. I found that the people who were struggling financially were often more generous towards me when I came to get paid for the job I'd completed. Not all but often the wealthier folk would try to take advantage of me by attempting to get more for their money.
    At first I couldn't understand this, chatting to my friend about it he said. "The poor folk appreciate how hard you have to work to make a decent living. The wealthy folk think you already earn more than enough"

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Mendenhall View Post
    I worked in a grocery store while an undergraduate. ...
    So did I. My father was a grocer.

    I'm sure that this cut me slack in some areas, but not others (e.g., there was no "minimum wage" involved: I had a roof over my head and all that).

    I learned that Dad was very good at what he did, and the people loved him. My Mom, the same.

    I also learned that I didn't have the temperament for it, and would have to plan for something else.

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    My parents - especially my father - ensured that I would not be spared from physical labor. Harrumph.

    The end goal was to make sure I ended up in professions that did NOT require heavy lifting. So far, so good.

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