Taking back the campuses

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Corlyss_D
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Taking back the campuses

Post by Corlyss_D » Wed Aug 03, 2005 10:56 am

Campus Liberals Stock Up on Canned Goods, Ammo

We couldn't help taking some delight in this classic man bites dog story. The left has announced that its latest "back to school" crusade aims to counteract what it calls the dreaded conservative "takeover" of universities.

Several weeks ago, a wide range of liberal groups, including MoveOn.org, the Center for American Progress and the Nation magazine, brought together 600 college-age foot soldiers in Washington to "defend Democratic policies" and mobilize an opposition movement to the encroachment of conservative opinion on campus. Keynote speaker Bill Clinton advised that Democrats can reconnect with American voters by talking about issues they really care about, such as the disputed 2000 election and ethnic violence in Sudan. (We're not making this up.)

In reality, universities remain the last citadels of the left -- at least when it comes to dollars. When one adds up the left-wing faculty salaries, the student newspapers, the textbooks, the litany of radical activist groups funded with tuition money, the speaking bureaus and so on, the left easily sucks up $1 billion plus through the academy. And for decades this multibillion-dollar indoctrination machine worked just fine. Polls have consistently shown that the longer kids stay on campus, the more radicalized they become in their political views -- which may explain why PhDs vote so heavily Democratic. Parents have long lamented that they send their 18-year-old sons and daughters to college as well-mannered conservatives and moderates and they come back four years later as confused Marxists.

But perhaps the leftists are right and, dare we say it, the culture on campus is changing. There are perhaps a half dozen conservative-based organizations -- most prominently the Leadership Institute, the Young Americans Foundation, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute -- that have sprouted to neutralize the ocean of money the left commandeers on campus. These right-leaning groups have perhaps a combined budget of $25 to $30 million. As Morton Blackwell, head of the Leadership Institute, which has given birth on 300 campuses to privately financed conservative activist groups, puts it: "We are easily outspent 50 to 1. I'm honestly not worried about George Soros putting another $1 billion into leftwing political activities on campus. They have no idea how to spend the billions they already control."

It's nice to know that the conservative activitist groups on campus -- outgunned as they are -- are making such tremendous inroads. Perhaps our future is in better hands than we thought.

-- Stephen Moore
Corlyss
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Lilith
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Post by Lilith » Wed Aug 03, 2005 2:17 pm

There is no question that college faculties have been far 'left' over the last 3 decades or so. I welcome more conservative thought at America's universities.
However, I really don't think much of this statement:
"Polls have consistently shown that the longer kids stay on campus, the more radicalized they become in their political views"

Its almost impossible to argue from effect to cause, so this statement makes less than sense to me. Besides, it precludes any thinking ability on the part of students. I see many many bright dedicated students and I find it hard to believe that they are simply "overwhelmed" by left wing faculty or university atmosphere.

Ralph
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Post by Ralph » Wed Aug 03, 2005 2:25 pm

I can't see far beyond my own university but I do have frequent contact with colleagues elsewhere. From what I can see, a few very prominent colleges notwithstanding, most students aren't that involved in either liberal or conservative issues.

Even at the law school level recruitment for either The Federalist Society or its counterpart, The American Constitution Society, yields each year a small, dedicated group of activists and the majority just deal with classes, work and their lives.

The average law student at my school graduates with over $100K in debt, often much more than that and with a good percentage acquired getting through undergrad studies. Sorry, but fantasies aside the culture now isn't behind much activism beyond non-partisan spirit events like runs to raise money for centrist causes..
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