• Meta
    185
    My English is so awfully broken sometimes so feel free to correct my mistakes.

    What is the goal of giving grades in school? To divide people. To make them the enemies of each other. To measure how one can obey the system. Because education is fucked up for you have to learn so much bullshit.
    The same with salary. It generates hate by letting some people get things they do not even need except that getting them means high status in society.
    We have to be aware of that the profit-oriented mega corporations and the monetary sector generate that and this is catastrophic for humanity.

    The system is broken and society will collapse when enough people realize that we live in a postmodern slavery system.

    edit: The title is misleading and I used the wrong expression. So the question is not "giving salary" is immoral but how they are doing it in our times making enormous differences between the classes of society.
    1. Is giving grades in school immoral? (14 votes)
        yes
        29%
        no
        71%
    2. Is the modern salary-system immoral? (14 votes)
        yes
        43%
        no
        57%
  • Erik
    597
    I think I understand the spirit behind your inquiries on grades and salaries, Meta, but I'm not quite sure what a viable alternative would be which could entirely negate inequality. Nor am I sure that that hypothetical system would even be desirable, especially if it came at the expense of human freedom.

    While I do appreciate the attempt to overcome the many injustices and 'false consciousness' of human beings so characteristic in a capitalist consumer economy, is completely doing away with all forms of competition and equitable compensation a realistic alternative? Not trying to strawman here but that seems to be the implication of your criticisms.

    Perhaps there's a mean between the two extremes: one which would temper the inhumanity and 'defects' of a market-oriented society--one in which every aspect of life seems subordinated to economic considerations--without completely negating the admirable attempt to gain recognition from others through the development of certain skills and much strenuous effort. That latter characteristic seems a very human desire, and one that some (e.g. Francis Fukuyama) posit as the primary reason for communism's ultimate failure. That hypothesis sounds plausible to me, at least as a partial explanation among other contributing factors.

    IMO capitalism is certainly debased in many ways, but it does allow for a relatively benign outlet of sorts for human beings to channel their ambition and energy. Maybe a shift in communal values could redirect those energies in ways that would ultimately be more aligned with some sense of the 'common good' than we currently experience. For example, one not strictly beholden to material things but more appreciative of artistic and ethical endeavors. But we'd have to first formulate where we'd like to go and then how to go about getting there. I doubt there'd be much agreement on the matter, even amongst staunch anti-capitalists.

    I'm sure there are free market advocates who would argue that the above is precisely what happens when people are left to pursue their goals free from government intervention; the self-interest of individuals eventually leads to admittedly unintended consequences which do benefit most, if not all (even Marx credits capitalism for its many achievements), at least in a material sense. Adam Smith's 'invisible hand' sort of thing.

    But what alternative to the current system did you have in mind, Meta? I find the question both interesting and pressing. Hard to reconcile freedom and equality but I'd definitely like to live in system which would be more equal than it is at present, and could achieve this while allowing freedom to flourish. I love stories about people who freely choose to compensate their employees more than is required by law, or who freely choose a life in which they make less money but find more satisfaction in making a difference in other peoples' lives, and other such things.

    P.S. Your English is fine.
  • Hanover
    4.8k
    I think everyone should get the same trophy regardless of where they finish in the race. In fact, I think everyone should get the same trophy regardless of whether they even show up for the race. Better yet, those who work to make themselves look great should not get a trophy at all because they're just trying to make me jealous. Screw them. Why would we they do that to me? That's mean as shit.
  • Meta
    185
    Thank you for answering my question! I will have to re-read your post several times to get a better understanding of it. However here is a short answer to what my alternatives are. I think capitalism is "fine". Freedom is a great value. And I don't know why but it seems like the system is flawed. I don't know if it is because of capitalism or whatever. One thing is sure. The rich gets richer and the poor gets poorer (not only from a monetary standpoint but educational etc.). And people on the lower end don't like the system. The "cost" of things do not reflect the "value" of things. A not so smart but ambitious person can get good grates while an introverted but maybe very smart person can be bullied out from "society" (for example being on the low end of the school hierarchy). People with much money can influence "truth" with lawyers and such. They make a shitload of money just by having money. The system turns everything into a competition. Of course there are smarter prettier taller stronger etc. people and there is some kind of natural competition but making a business based on these and making copetition the goal leads to an ill-valued society. When idiots are the bosses, when average looking people get photoshopped to become the dreams beyond reach in society then capitalism is not capitalism anymore.
    Some alternatives?
    1. Objective quantitative and logical methods in every aspect politics and economics (maybe using A.I.?) So there aren't idiots in leading roles.
    2. A better family model (from which people get human values without having to be competitive)
    3. A "restart" of the capital. We have to redistribute capital so these inequalities will disappear for a while. I think nature will "restart" the capital when derivative markets collapse. I am 100% sure that will happen in my lifetime.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    What is the goal of giving grades in school?Meta

    The goal is to get everyone thinking in the same way. It suppresses creativity to achieve conformity.
  • Cuthbert
    214
    Four questions about the capital that we are going to redistribute. (1) Who does it belong to currently? (2) How are we going to get it off them? (3) Who are we going to give it to? (4) Who are 'we' - I mean, who will do the redistribution?

    One answer is: 'we' are the state and we take everyone's capital off them through taxation or confiscation and we redistribute to everyone according to their need. It's an experiment that may happen in your lifetime but it is also one that has already been tried in the lifetime of previous generations.
  • Meta
    185

    (1) The honest answer is I don't know. However it is widely accepted that a very small % of people own the majority of goods. I would say corporations, banks and high net worth individuals own much more than optimal or even sustainable for society. And I think there is much more that we don't know about.
    (2) I think nature will solve it. One day a big bank will say: "Okay guys I can't pay" and then the dominoes will do the job of crashing the economy.
    (3) I did not mean that there is x amount of money in the world and we will give some for everybody. We need other forms of "trust". Maybe there will be a new currency maybe there won't but this mechanism of keeping everybody in debt is evil. We don't trust banks. Why should we trust money?
    (4) As "we" I mean we, the people on Earth. Maybe other institutions aswell. That was just a heuristic idea of mine I don't kno the details.
  • Meta
    185
    I totally agree. I would add a little note to that it is impossible to fully understand or logically derive some important scientific statements as a high-school student using high-school methods. This means you have to learn them and force your brain to learn what you can't prove so you just believe these things and brainlessly use them. This applies to Physics or History. So basically you are getting brainwashed.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Yes. Some of the mass conformity is practical (e.g. basic math), but most of it is to advance some ideology that economically benefits some group. They want robots, and there are lots of teachers who are quite willing to press this theme to keep their jobs.
  • Meta
    185
    Interesting that somebody voted for grades being moral and salary being immoral. I think they are basically the same the only difference is the age of the people who get them
  • Nils Loc
    483
    Maybe someone is making a wages versus salary distinction.

    Getting grades is on a per assignment point-based system so it resembles working for a wage more than it does a salary.
  • Cuthbert
    214
    You have had that education and you haven't been brainwashed - witness, your post. So why do think anyone else has been brainwashed? Maybe because you are smarter. That's the usual implication of the 'it's all brainwashing' argument we hear everywhere from politics to science to media. "Everyone is taken in by the deception - except me, 'cos I'm smarter than everyone else." It raises the question: are you really?
  • unenlightened
    3.8k
    Are you not simply employing your superior grading and reward system of 'moral and immoral'?
  • Meta
    185

    I did not say I wasn't brainwashed. In fact the things I wrote and being brainwashed by the educational system are consistent in my opinion. A lot of other people may be well aware of the flaws of the system so they aren't necessarily brainwashed in every aspect. I try to be objective so my point is not based on me being smarter than the others but observations about the system which anyybody can agree or disagree on. So being smarter or not is irrelevant when talking about observations and debating about the possible consequences of these observations.
  • Meta
    185

    You have a point. But if we want any kind of debate to take place then we need some kind of "rating system"; namely we have to rate a sentence "true" or "false".
    Instead of "immoral" I could have been using the expression "causes a lot of unnecessary pain". I think if something causes a lot of unnecessary pain that thing is immoral. But that is irrelevant anyways.
    My original question can be reformulated to a question which does not involve "rating" directly. Maybe you accept that question.
    Do the modern education and salary-system cause a lot of unnecessary pain?
    (That is the basic thought behind my use of "immoral").
    edit: So I use a rating system but we all have to rate things in order to get anything useful. My goal was to criticize the modern economical and educational rating-systems.
  • unenlightened
    3.8k
    if we want any kind of debate to take place then we need some kind of "rating system"; namely we have to rate a sentence "true" or "false".Meta

    Well I don't have any problem with that, because a sentence's feelings are not hurt by being called false. And in the same way, I don't have any problem with rating your maths homework answers as right or wrong. It's the same thing.

    So the unnecessary pain is produced not by the grading of work alone, but by the identification of the student and their work. So I say, " your ideas are a bit wrong" but you hear, "You are wrong".

    If your ideas are wrong, then that discovery is identical with changing your ideas. But if you are wrong, then how can you ever be right?

    So let us proclaim as loudly as possible, that getting things wrong, and finding out that they are wrong, is the whole process of education that leads to getting things right. If you have to get it right from the beginning, then you can never get started on anything new. Therefore rejoice when the sheep or maths problem that was lost is found more than the sheep that never strayed or the maths problem that is no problem. And then one will not be hurt.
  • Meta
    185
    Jeah my problem is not the rating system itself but how it is done today. My English just simply sucks so I can't express myself well enough.
    You and your "pedigree" are basically the same in most aspects of life.
    -i dont understand that sheep/maths problem and what it has to do with this.
  • Cuthbert
    214
    "I think if something causes a lot of unnecessary pain that thing is immoral."

    That's interesting. I can easily avoid the pain of paying money to Tesco by shoplifting. Queuing up and paying causes me unnecessary pain. I'm a very good shoplifter and never get caught. So shopping and paying for stuff is immoral. Hmm. Something to think about there.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    I voted for grades being moral and salary being immoral. They are not the same thing. Grades are measures of effort and accomplishment by students. Students need feedback on their performance -- how else can they know whether or not they did well on a biology test or not? How would they know whether their writing was improving or not? The accomplishments of students benefit themselves first and foremost.

    Wages (or salary) are payments for either services provided or production of goods. Workers receive less than the value of the goods and services they produce. If, during an hour, a worker produces $50 worth of goods, and gets paid $20, the remaining $30 is kept by the employer. The employer did not perform the work of production, but is keeping 60% of the proceeds. Work in a capitalist economy is a system of exploitation -- wage slavery.

    Grades and wages are different things. Grades may be realistic or not, inflated or not, lower or higher than they should be, and all manner of inconsistencies -- but still, grades and wages are different.

    What is immoral in school is institutional failure to perform in the task of providing good education. It might be very ill-advised, might be quite stupid, for a student to do little to learn, but it isn't immoral.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    Jeah my problem is not the rating system itself but how it is done today. My English just simply sucks so I can't express myself well enough.
    You and your "pedigree" are basically the same in most aspects of life.
    -i dont understand that sheep/maths problem and what it has to do with this.
    Meta

    Your English seems to be good enough. You employed the slang term "sucks" properly, but "Jeah" is mis-spelled. Are you a native German or Scandinavian-language speaker, where 'J' sounds like the English 'Y'?

    Unenlightened's comment about sheep and maths is a reference to the Gospel story about the lost sheep. The shepherd went looking for the lost sheep and was very happy when he found it. Maybe the lost sheep was happy too. Don't know -- Jesus didn't say. The sheep who stayed home and didn't get lost were annoyed by all the attention the stupid sheep without way-finding skills got.

    In America, 'mathematics' is plural, math is singular -- no 's'. The English, damn them, put an 's' on the end of math to get 'maths'. This is an abomination. God hates abominations as much as he loves lost sheep that have the good sense to be found.
  • Meta
    185
    I would say paying for something is a necessary pain.
    Buying unnecessary stuff only to be the king of the hill causes unnecessary pain.

    Maybe we could define the concept of pain being (morally?) unnecessary.
    An action (or state?) X yields necessary pain if there isn't a possible world in which for every 'a' capable of doing X: 'a' doesn't do X and everyone's utility function is not lower that in the actual world.

    So if nobody would pay for stuff then the world wouldn't be a better place. That's why paying at TESCO is a necessary pain.
    If nobody would buy unnecessary luxury goods that are unaffordable for a lot of people then the world would be a better place for everyone. So it causes unnecessary pain.

    Your example shows that the definition of immorality is not characterized by my condition.

    edit: The definition should be modified. Everyone's should be replaced by everyone whos not immorally wealthy or something like that. Now the definition of being immorally wealthy is another question.
  • Meta
    185
    I think grades and wages are the same in the sense that they support the system which is itself immoral by the above definition(?). Yes they are completely different from a lot of perspectives.
    There are the useful things about education you have mentioned but then there is the dark side of the whole system. I think there is grade-slavery similar to wage-slavery.
    I think every science has its philosophy and epistemology but they don't teach it at schools. For if they did, the majority of people would hate the system. Like the morality of economics today is basically money <==> good and the only moral duty of people is consuming.
  • Meta
    185
    I'm from Eastern-Europe so the flaws of education and wage-slavery are strongly present. I think, however that majority of the world suffers from that more or less.
    And that gospel metaphor... I still don't get it. If the goal at school were to find the truth or simply get better by learning from our mistakes that would be fine. I'm afraid that the system is much more evil under the surface.
    We can agree in that American English is the only English!
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    IF the average school, whether you like it or hate it, dropped grades and left everything else the same, the public education would still be unsatisfactory. It's unsatisfactory for reasons having little to do with grades.

    What is unsatisfactory?

    1. One of the unstated functions of education is to keep children, youth, and young adults off the streets. To many youth on the streets, especially the wrong kind of youth (varies from place to place) makes some adults, business people, and police nervous. As a function of keeping children off the streets, schools also help regulate the labor pool, keeping younger adults in consuming rules rather than producing roles. (Of course, educational programs -- even state operated and private universities and trade schools -- are a form of service production which needs students in class.)

    2. Schools are instruments of ideology for the ruling class (whatever ruling class you have got). History, civics, literature, social studies, and sometimes other subjects as well, are tailored to fit the ruling ideology. So, for instance, you won't find labor lauded and honored in history books; you won't find Manifest Destiny (an American obsession) described as aboriginal genocide. You will find the super rich of the the 19th century described as robber barons, but you won't find the current superrich described that way.

    Eastern Europe is going to have it's own ruling ideologies to deal with in school.

    3. The standards to which American students are expected to perform are generally too low. About 10% of American students receive a very good education -- high standards, good teachers, good curricula. Another 10% to 20% get a reasonably good education. But maybe 70% get a sloppy, low-grade education. It isn't what students want, necessarily, it isn't what teachers want either, but at least in this country, many people are at a loss to specify what children really need to learn.

    4. The capitalist class aggravates the whole problem of education by structuring the economy to render many kinds of workers irrelevant. Lower skilled workers are obviously less relevant to the American and Western European economies these days (because we exported all that work to Asia). But so are some skilled and professional fields becoming irrelevant. Just how necessary is an old fashioned literature major (like myself, though I graduated from college 50 years ago and am not looking for work anymore)? No very.

    How necessary are the many people who used to, and still do, work in middle management? Companies are laying these people off all the time and replacing them with computerized functions.

    5. What is life for? Education should prepare people to answer that question, and then conduct their lives in the most suitable way to achieve at least some satisfaction and happiness in life. I don't think a lot of leaders have a clue, at this point, how to educate people that way. (Because, for one thing, to frankly address the problem of what your life is for, we have to admit to students that maybe their lives are functionally irrelevant.)
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    We can agree in that American English is the only English!Meta

    I like American English better than any other kind, but that's the English I grew up with. BTW, a lot of Americans like the sound of "received pronunciation" that they frequently hear on BBC and other British productions. They tend to think news delivered with an upper class British accent is "more authoritative".
  • Meta
    185
    You have put this into words perfectly. (2.) is my main concern.

    We have to shout out that the system is corrupt and is run by thieves and worse. They don't teach that at school.

    They want us to feel worthless but this is not the case.
    The system was created by people, it is run by people and people (or nature) will end it (I'm afraid I'm being too optimistic in that).
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    The system was created by peopleMeta

    Created by some people, imposed on and acceded to by the rest. What it will take to end, or change this system is revolution. Oh, oh, alarms go off - warning flags go up!

    Yes, revolution, but it need not, i hope will not be the French Revolution with heads piling up next to the guillotine. Nor the Russian Revolution of 1917, which ushered in the dictatorship of Joseph Stalin. More like a concerted take over by the rank and file of the people. Certainly that won't happen next week, and in no case will it be easy. It will take extensive and intensive organizing and a tremendous rise in class consciousness among the working class (the ruling class already has all the class consciousness they need).

    Take off your wooden shoes and thoughtfully drop them into the works, if you can't think of anything else to do, but be selective.

    And for everyone's sake, start thinking now about what it is that we want, and articulate it.
  • Zosito
    18
    We have been put to sleep, as it were, by the mass-media wielding masters of mankind, so that they can more easily go about their business.

    At least that is my opinion. It is also my opinion that a change of emphasis in this value-assigning apparatus is needed for a revolution to take place.

    It is not enough that the working class realize they're being screwed by an elite. There must be a shift in the general perception of what the "good" is, else a revolution will only breed new systems of oppression and evil.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.1k
    It is not enough that the working class realize they're being screwed by an elite. There must be a shift in the general perception of what the "good" is, else a revolution will only breed new systems of oppression and evil.Zosito

    That is so very very true.

    We don't put new wine in old wineskins (but we do put whiskey in barrels that had old wine in them, which yields good results. Jesus wasn't familiar with fine whiskey or bourbon. Maybe he would have been more a gin man.)
  • Waya
    1k
    Giving grades in school is not dangerous, I think. As others have stated, without them, then children would not know how well they are performing in their studies. It also gives motivation to work harder, verses everyone receiving the same grade. It would be wrong for a person who underperformed on a test to receive the same mark of recognition as one who studied day and night.
    As for wages, I also do not think that they are all that dangerous. A similar effect may be obtain through this, at least to a point. A higher degree of work deserves a higher amount of pay. Someone who gave 110% should receive more than one who didn't even show up. Now, when the unions in the States stuck their noses into increasing payment for certain people , and that it is very hard to fire certain employees, then the field becomes less leveled. This, I believe to be unfair, as it reduces competition, and effort placed in the work.
  • Locks
    10
    I don't think giving grades are immoral but I think limiting knowledge to certain categories is a gross misuse of the education system which probably only exists to produce nice little workers for corporations.
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