- When some scholars have disagreements with others, they don’t simply debate or publish differing opinions, they campaign to silence those with whom they disagree. They do it by back channel contacts with Journal publishers and book publishers and to organizers of academic conferences.
- Some academics whose names appear on books put their names on them, but their grad students do all the work whilst the high profile scholar gets all the credit. It’s plagiarism, but they don’t mind.
- Minorities and women have a better chance of getting an academic position than white males. It’s reverse discrimination, but they don’t mind. The gay asian woman can write her own ticket.
- Papers at academic conferences are generally accepted only if they represent only very minor adjustments of the status quo.
- Too many academics stand in front of their classroom and their lecture hall and read line by line off of a paper in front of them, scarcely looking up, and dutifully unconcerned about whether or not what they say makes sense, or means anything at all.
- Too many academics take themselves far too seriously.
- Too many academics take their work far too seriously.
- Much academic work is done only to impress peers and rarely has any concern for either educating students or reaching out to the wider public with findings that actually matter.
Given all these facts, and they are facts, it is little surprise that the general public has little interest in the work, or the continuing employment, of academics. They are also the reason why someone like Scott Walker can literally gut higher education in his State and have broad support among every class except academics.
The public has funded academic enterprises for a very long time and for the most part they have almost nothing to show for it (because academics in their thousands prefer to address only one another and not the man on the street). To justify their ‘ivory tower’ focus academics love to pretend that the public is so stupid that everything has to be dumbed down and that’s just beneath their royal station.
Rubbish. The general public is hungry for the truth. Stop appearing on Discovery and giving them pablum and instead go out into the highways and byways and offer courses on interesting topics in Churches and community centers and watch support for the academic enterprise skyrocket.
Or not. It really doesn’t matter to me. It should matter to you though. That is, if you want your academic pursuits to continue.