The degradation of university degrees over my life-time, is tragic. Readers familiar with my novel of 20 years back, “Degrees For Everyone” will understand. Consider this.
A regular contributor in the NZ Herald is a Canterbury University sociologist, (a bogus subject lacking any intellectual element) namely a Dr Jarrod Gilbert. In a recent Herald article he wrote, “… I told you how me and a mate bought shares in a couple of racehorses”.
So me bought shares in a racehorse. This abominable illiteracy is typical of why I now see little value in a liberal university education when instead one can self-educate through reading.
Degrees are now sprayed about like confetti and are totally meaningless. Judging by this quote Jarrod would make a greater contribution to society holding a stop-go sign.
Another example reported in the Post quoted a Wellington Lower Court judge Nicola Wills saying of an offender he “had picked up a full 15 litre water container and threw it at a line of police.”
It’s unbelievable. “Had” is past tense thus the Judge should have said “thrown”, not “threw”.
Throw your cell-phone away Nicola and start reading books.
In a Post interview with a 19 year old Victoria University student Anatasia Reid, she’s quoted saying, “I was born in Auckland but moved to Wellington when I was 2 and have spent my whole life here”.
It’s bloody mind-blowing. No Anatasia, you haven’t spent your whole life here in Wellington if your first two years were in Auckland. Again, throw away your cell-phone girl and start reading.
Finally, in August The Listener ran an interesting article by John Saker who was a key figure in Labour’s advertising agency for the 1993 election. Saker’s thesis was that Labour might have won had the agency been allowed to do something they’d planned for the last week’s campaign. However, I raise this for a different reason. Brace yourself.
Saker wrote of his strategy, “We never mentioned the Opposition” then immediately followed that black and white emphatic assertion with the next sentence reading, “One of the few times we did…”
It’s bloody unbelievable, more so coming from a supposedly professional wordsmith. And what of the Listener’s sub-editors who should have picked this up?
John; take note. You either mentioned it or you didn’t.
All of this is testimony to the rapidly declining literacy arising from electronic communication dependency.