Oh boy, it’s that time of year! The familiar cacophony of sniffles and coughs echoes throughout each lecture hall, derailing my focus as I attempt to complete my 427th level of Candy Crush. Most of my floormates, who can typically be found occupying the lounge at 1 a.m. with CTB and chemistry textbooks, are now cooped up in their rooms, waiting for their illnesses to subside. Cornell University — filled to the brim with bustling, sleep-deprived students — has warped into a Petri dish of sickness and disease. But that’s not even the worst of it.
Editor’s Note: This piece is part of The Sun’s dueling columns feature. In this feature, Darren Chang ’21 and Jade Pinero ’19 debate, “Is capitalism good?” Read the counterpart column here. For a lucky few trust-fund babies and Horatio Alger protagonists, capitalism is great! For almost everyone else, capitalism ensures a crippled existence, devoid of agency, entirely contingent on one’s continued productive utility. Also, notably, free two-day shipping.
We call education an “investment,” which typically refers to money spent with the eventual expectation of a return. My rough calculation of the number of students and the average cost of tuition indicates that over $400 billion is “invested” in college every year. For scale, with that money you could own JPMorgan Chase, Facebook or Johnson & Johnson and still have the equivalent of Alaska’s GDP to spare. This week, dozens of parents and administrators were arrested on fraud charges in relation to a sprawling scheme for admission to some of the nation’s top colleges. These parents “invested” six- and seven-figures to cheat on standardized tests and manipulate the athletic admissions process to ensure their children’s acceptance.
Four Cornell professors gathered in McGraw Hall to discuss the history of capitalism, where each professor crafted their own idea on the history of capitalism, based on past experiences and current research.
Dowd told students that a Cornell education was “boring and wasteful” in 1969, The Sun reported at the time, and said, “people are being crippled here.” The only thing that makes life interesting, he said, is the “ability to use your mind,” and he blamed the culture of Cornell largely on students and faculty.
When I was first applying to college, I fell in love with the idea of going to a school where I could see the stars at night. Having been born in a city and raised in suburbia, I imagined something idyllic and romantic about living in a rural city completely removed from the rest of the world and from the noisy humdrum of daily life. It wasn’t just about being out in the nature; it was a symbol for the education and intellectual environment I wanted — an oasis of thought and individuality. However, the truth is that Cornell is a neoliberal, corporate institution designed to churn out human capital in the form of polished, Ivy League-educated graduates ready to tackle the toughest models Wall Street has to throw at them. The stream of freshmen walking down the bridge from North Campus before 11:40 classes resembles an industrial assembly line — we walk from class to class, and each class serves as a mechanical arm preparing student after student for assimilation into the corporate world.
“The MacDonald’s Man” folds the highbrow seriousness of literature in on itself. People come out and denounce it not as a poem, but as “good poetry.” Well I do think it’s a good poem, but for different reasons.
People were shocked when Beyoncé dropped her new music video, “Formation,” the day before The Super Bowl. Since then, I have had so many discussions about this song with so many people. Some say it is entirely overrated, while others gush about how empowering it is. I fall somewhere in between. I love the fact that “Formation” is unapologetically black and makes references to black culture that are entirely missed by non-black audiences.
In light of the recent legalizations of gay-marriage in Iowa and Vermont, author Sherry Wolf yesterday seek to bring attention to the continuous fight against the oppression of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning communities throughout history, from the 1969 Stonewall riots to the current controversy over Proposition 8, California’s 2008 ban on gay marriage.
The lecture, which was sponsored by the International Socialist Organization and Haymarket Books, attracted about 20 people.