One of the major points missing here is the value of being an independent scholar. For centuries, people have studied on their own- farmers recited portions of epic poems and sang songs important to their culture while at work. They were literate; well-informed and savvy about many things. They could survive in spite of ‘downturns’ in their unpredictable situations. My grandmother’s advice remains the same: “Get an education: it is the only thing no one can take away from you.” What we need to remember is that learning can be acquired without great cost. People have created salons, study groups. People have frequented Libraries, though they are threatened now, too. But there are books; there are others with whom to meet and explore. Some of our best knowledge has come to us that way. The various ‘right-wing’ groups in the world do NOT want people to be educated; to be well-informed. They want people to be afraid, angry, feeling overwhelmed so that they will be compliant with whatever nonsense the Neocon/Neoliberal/Dictatorial minority hands out through oppression and violence. We can side-step them. The great Irish tradition is full of such accomplishment. We became ‘evasive’ when hitting the oppressor head-on was a bad idea. Truly, do not acquire massive debt from bloated tuitions. Use innovation: community; discovery. Best wishes for grand learning to all.
Dec. 30, 2011 at 5:32 p.m.” —Kathleen Walsh RN, Chicago commenting on this story NYT: Instead of Work, Younger Women Head to School.