Let's check off some of the things this country is "all about," according to popular rumor:
1.A respect for our fellow man.
2.An appreciation of the finer things in life.
3.A high standard of education.
4.A respect for religion, regardless of what denomination.
5.An appreciation of good eating and drinking habits in relation to health.
6.An appreciation of the value of mental health, especially among the young.
7.Good commnication between those of different opinions.
8.The importance of the knowledge of how others live and their cultural values.
These are trumpeted by politicians, praised by liberals and conservatives alike and considered prime objectives of a literate democracy. Guess what?
In a recent article on the website Salary.com, some attention was paid to these and every one of them was mentioned. The name of the article was "Eight college degrees with the worst return on investment." In short, all of the eight values mentioned in the introduction to this blog fit nicely in the bottom eight - a sterling record. More exactly, the dregs ranked, in order, Sociology, Fine Arts, Education, Theology, Tourism, Nutrition, Psychology (counselling) and Communication. These are the ones Salary.com judged would yield the lowest lifetime financial return on the investment of a college education. Of course, this isn't publicized too widely since there are fewer and fewer peasants who can afford the $40 - $110 thousand bucks it takes to graduate, except those who can get scholarships or become entertainers or dealers. That's why we have over a trillion bucks in outstanding student debt - not enough dealers.
So what does this article say about America? Nothing we didn't already know. In the good ol' U.S. of A., what we want is "real" education. Banking, BIZNESS, engineering, something USEFUL! Eggheads who study dead musicians or artists, sponge off the taxpayers six hours a day while getting three months vacation, interfere with what we eat and drink, find out about people we don't even know ("furriners") - these folks are sort of like barnacles on the ship of progress. We want somebody we can have a beer with - not somebody who looks down the road and talks about what we can do for our country. We shoot these.
Money makes the world go 'round, but when it becomes the entire reason for existing, we might be on the verge of losing the whole she-bang. Check off how many "famous" people are "famous" only because they have a great PR man (or woman) resulting from an excess of ego and money or a paucity of common sense. And, speaking of PR people, would a major in public relations be a "better return on investment" than, say, nursing? What is the definition of "success" in our country measured by? Service to mankind? Benefit to our country? Or cold, hard cash?
Perhaps the reason theology is one of the losers is that some religions teach that you can't serve God and Mammon. Remember the ones left behind - who were like the camel trying to get through the eye of a needle? No money in something like that!
Teaching the future generations of Americans to value money above all - which is what Salary.com seems to indicate - doesn't bode well for the future.