Sunday, December 12, 2004

 

Campus Liberals Lead Extremism for the Democrats

George Will writes an excellent essay in the continuing series of authors looking at the domination of college campuses by liberals. The idea that when like minded people congregate together, the extremes of their ideas become mainstream is an interesting take on why campuses keep getting more liberal.

This gives rise to what Bauerlein calls the ``false consensus effect,'' which occurs when, due to institutional provincialism, ``people think that the collective opinion of their own group matches that of the larger population.'' There also is what Cass Sunstein, professor of political science and jurisprudence at the University of Chicago, calls ``the law of group polarization.'' Bauerlein explains: ``When like-minded people deliberate as an organized group, the general opinion shifts toward extreme versions of their common beliefs.'' They become tone-deaf to the way they sound to others outside their closed circle of belief.


As a college republican/conservative, my first (and only)college job was in a chemistry lab. Day in and out we used reason and logic built upon facts and made conclusions to discover scientific problems. Certainly these same people would use those same methods when looking at politics and economics. To my shock, I found myself working amongst nearly all democrats. The same strict methodologies used to solve complicated scientific questions was thrown out the window in lieu of emotional politics couched in desires of personal gain and prestige through the next big government grant or state funded pay increase. Academic positions are all funded, in large part, by government program money. This keeps the academic world at the mercy of the government, just like the millions of people who believe they could not survive without the government program du jour. The academics are not stupid, they won't bite the hand that feeds them and will continue to push for bigger government, higher taxes, and more pay for professors. They will also continue to use their influence on 18 to 21 year old college students to try to increase the number of liberals in the voting community. I, for one, could see right through most of these professors and it turned me away from liberalism even more. Given the last election, I'm guessing that didn't happen to just me.



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