Academic Hypocrisy

By:  Thomas Sowell
02/22/2012
       
Academic Hypocrisy

It is fascinating to see people accusing others of things that they themselves are doing, especially when their own sins are worse. Academics love to say that businesses are not paying enough to people who work for them. But where in business are there people who are paid absolutely nothing for strenuous work that involves risks to their health?
 
 

It is fascinating to see people accusing others of things that they themselves are doing, especially when their own sins are worse.  Academics love to say that businesses are not paying enough to people who work for them. But where in business are there people who are paid absolutely nothing for strenuous work that involves risks to their health?
 
In academia, that situation is common. It is called college football. How often have you watched a big-time college football game without seeing someone limping off the field or being carried off the field?
 
College athletes are not to be paid because this is an "amateur" sport. But football coaches are not only paid, they are often paid higher salaries than the presidents of their own universities. Some make over a million dollars a year.
 
Academics also like to accuse businesses of consumer fraud. There is indeed fraud in business, as in every other aspect of human life — including academia.
 
When my academic career began, half a century ago, I read up on the academic market and discovered that there was a chronic over-supply of people trained to be historians. There were not nearly enough academic posts available for people who had spent years acquiring Ph.D.s in history, and the few openings that there were for new Ph.D.s paid the kind of salaries you could get for doing work requiring a lot less education.

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Thomas Sowell (photo)

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