I knew a local farmer who farmed in a way that was so inefficient that if you tried to do it more inefficiently than he did, you’d fail.
He’d fill heavy buckets of water and carry each bucket of water separately to each of his 18 cows more than 20 feet away. The list of his methods of work would go on forever. Anyone who could have seen him working would have told him that he had to get more efficient and that the way he was going he’d never get anywhere.
But in a country where every reliable survey has shown that a great many people are dissatisfied with their job, hate the daily work they’re doing, are sure they’re underpaid, think their boss is incapable, and can count the days they have till they can retire, this farmer once said, “You know, I’ve farmed this farm for over 75 years, and I’ve enjoyed every day.”
There was a reason why he wasn’t concerned about “getting somewhere.”
He was already there.
Going to high school today is free. Free means that the adults pay for it. This they do with their real estate taxes.
Based on the number of students attending college today, and in some cases maybe on what is learned, one might argue that college today is what high school used to be.
To keep everything in line, have we come to the point where college also ought to be free? Like high school? There are a few politicians who think so.
Maybe the time is not quite ripe. But the argument that money spent by a government on further education would at any rate be better spent there than on questionable adventures in the Middle East is an argument that is hard to refute.
(Robert E. Regut is a graduate of West Point and a teacher with 20-plus years of experience in the teaching of foreign languages, specializing in the teaching of spoken German. He can be reached at P.O. Box 101, Nobleboro, ME, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.)