Tuesday, September 17, 2013

This is your college on drugs

From Dissent the Blog:

assume - to suppose to be the case, without proof: you're afraid of what people are going to assume about me | [ with clause ] : it is reasonable to assume that such changes have significant social effects | [ with obj. and infinitive ] : they were assumed to be foreign.*
1. Today's visit by students of the California Corporate College caused the predictable parking snafus. One could see students (et al.) anxiously prowling the lots. A colleague explained that she was a half hour late for her class, owing to the fubar. [Note: college administration seems to have declared war on instruction at Irvine Valley College, now regularly creating parking snafus for the sake of questionable events such as this one, thereby causing students--and instructors--to be late for class, etc.]

2. At about 11:40, I wandered over to the IVC PAC and entered. The "California Corporate College" event was in full swing, and the hall was pretty full. Somebody was yammerin'.      I've got nothin'.
3. I assume that the sun will rise in the morning. Does that make me an "ass"? Don't think so. 
     Note: someone who does not make that assumption is mentally ill.
     And suppose that someone really said that "it is reasonable to assume that such changes have significant social effects"? (See def. above.) Only an ass would insist that it is unreasonable to make that assumption.

4. Insisting that one does not "assume" any such thing would make one an ass. If not an ass, at least a liar. 
     "I am aware that it is at least possible that the sun will not rise. And so I don't really assume it." —Here we have someone who is used to changing words' meanings to save a foolish idea. —A liar or self-deceiver.

5. It's pretty clear, I think, that the truth about assuming is as follows: the phenomenon of assuming comprises a range of cases from the reasonable (and, in truth, more than reasonable) to the unreasonable (foolish or even mad). Hence, some assumptions are foolish (i.e., ass-making) and some are not. It depends on the case.
     Why overstate the case, declaring all assumptions to be foolish? Just what is the matter with you?

6. It's like the familiar blatherage that "you can be anything you want to be." Well, no. Obviously not. Sure, there are some who need to be encouraged to try to do or achieve things. Yes, there are some who falsely or foolishly underestimate what is achievable as a goal. Be that as it may, it does not justify such idiotic blatherage as "you can be anything you want to be."

7. In this country, when we plan an event, we tend to turn it into a circus. Fighting cancer, for us, is no sober enterprise; it's pink ribbons and "races" for cures. And when we seek to correct an error, we overcorrect and create a new error:
Your vote counts. (Sure, they count it. But it doesn't "count" in the sense of having a bearing on the outcome.) You can be anything you want to be. (Well, no. Yes, quite possibly, you have underestimated the opportunities available to you. But it takes strength to aim high and miss. The miss could send you spiraling downward. Do these idiots have a slogan for spiraling depressives too?) There are no limits to what you can achieve! (Ditto.) This is your brain on drugs. (C'mon. Kinda depends on the drug, doesn't it? And what about that martini in your hand, asshole?) Celebrate yourself! (I should celebrate myself? What if I'm a lout? A lazy ass? A Tea Partier?)
*My Mac's dictionary