Camille Paglia always has an interesting column. Here's from her latest:
The American system of higher education has become an insane assembly line -- bankrupting families to process hapless students through an incoherent, haphazard and mediocre liberal arts curriculum. In the '60s, there was a brief moment when middle-class young men were dropping out of college to become silversmiths or leather workers in San Francisco or Greenwich Village. As the product of an Italian-American immigrant family where the crafts were honored, I cheered that development and prayed that it would continue. But it sputtered out -- probably because the recession of the 1970s was a cold dose of reality.
Perhaps there's hope of change because of the tens of thousands of liberal arts graduates with expensive degrees who are finding themselves out of work and depressingly marginalized in a society where the manual trades offer guaranteed employment at relatively high wages. A dose of Buddhism might do people good: Sweeping garden sand into oceanic designs around ornamental rocks is considered a spiritual exercise in Asia. I say that landscaping, construction, carpentry, metalworking and all the other trades should be promoted by primary education as worthy careers for both men and women. The pre-college rat race is a sadomasochistic imposition on the young that robs them of free will and saps their vital energies. When will they rebel?
Tough to disagree with that.