Speaking of cancelling reminded me of the university now being organized by the Famous Cancelleds. When I looked at their website in November, it was all future plans, and felt like vaporware. Now there’s one class or seminar firmly scheduled:
Our Forbidden Courses summer program invites top students from other universities to join us for a spirited discussion about the most provocative questions that often lead to censorship or self-censorship in many universities. Students will become proficient and comfortable with productive disagreement. Instructors will range from top professors to accomplished business leaders, journalists, and artists.
Note the emphasis on TOP students and TOP leaders. This is not for the powerless. This is elites training elites as usual. Outsiders have no way of knowing whether the TOP students will be learning to tolerate and ignore disagreement, or just learning new tactics to censor and ruin the peasants.
Last month I was uneasy about the motives:
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I see three inadequate points in their FAQ.
1. They’re seeking accreditation, which is a powerful force toward orthodoxy. The accrediting agencies expect maximum Wokitude.
2. I don’t see a commitment to avoid tenure. After tenure gets up and running, there’s no escape from ever-narrowing orthodoxy.
3. I don’t see a Trinity House motivation loop. If they simply invite the right kind of students, the wrong kind of students WILL get in and ruin the setup. Stings and APs have plenty of Deepstate money, and know how to manipulate the system.
Maintaining an unorthodox purpose against the headwinds of Parkinson bureaucracy and accrediting agencies requires a more specific feedback loop of money for value. Trinity House, working for safe navigation, has been funded by ships safely reaching port, and it has maintained its purpose for 500 years. Funding for this university needs to depend on students safely reaching the port of independent thinking. How? I don’t know, but I’m sure the TWO-WAY OBLIGATION is necessary.
Also, there are some pure Deepstaters in the founding crowd, like Peter Singer and Larry Summers and Strossen of ACLU. The whole thing could be just another fake front.
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The seminar does nothing to relieve my uneasiness.