Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘parasitic institutions

The Declaration of students for a democratic society in 1962 at port Huron stated the following:

First, the university has an influential position in permanent social development,

Second, the educative function of a university is indispensable to the formation of social attitudes,

Third, in this complex world of interactions, the university is the central institution for the evaluation and transmission of knowledge,

Fourth, the university is a pertinent social organ for access to knowledge and internal openness to social movements for change and reforms,

Fifth, there are no alternatives for movements of social change and reforms but to acquiring the necessary intellectual competence and knowledge offered within university campuses for using as potent tools of serious deliberation, fair judgement, and honest rational reflections.

In most States, universities are funded by public money; this was the case in the US over 50 years ago, until universities became self-sustained business unit, interacting and transacting with public institutions and private companies.  It is evident that universities in most nations, within its financial and economic structures, are “parasitic institutions” taxing the people for its sustainability.

Obviously, one way of acquiring financial sustainability is to having companies and public services, hiring exiting graduate students to filling job positions, transfer a portion of earned monthly check to the proper university for a duration.

Two drawbacks are consequent to this financial method:

First, students will select financially remunerating fields of study,

Second, university will encourage the students toward disciplines that have higher job opportunities.

What would happen to disciplines in arts, sociology, philosophy, languages,…?

There is this well-established trend that generates grants from public institutions and private companies supporting research studies in specific domains.  The companies enjoy tax-exempt contributions and the university allocates 52% of the amount of the grant to “overhead expenses” for using university facilities…  Actually, tax-exempt contributions are fundamentally taxing the people for more State revenues the next year.

The contention is that most of these grants do not go to basic research but to targeted missions related to military programs and capitalist model systems for exploiting common people and the developing States.  

What can be done so that the students declaration be translated effectively to enhancing social awareness and communication among communities for a peaceful and equitable election laws for representation in power?

An excellent alternative is that, in addition to “overhead expenses”, the university cut out a portion of the grants and allocate it to social, artistic, and inter-communication research programs and student support for liberal choices of specialities.

How transparent are the processes and procedures in secret institutions, private and public, playing the role of universities, like secret campuses, off-limit to public scrutiny in democratic systems?

There are the cases of two universities in Lebanon:  The American University of Beirut (AUB) and the Lebanese American University (LAU). Both universities receive funding from the US government and thus, the US Administration consider these universities are belonging to the US properties, even if most of the tuitions are paid by Lebanese students on Lebanese land.

A few years ago, the US delayed the election of a President to  LAU for an entire year because the Lebanese candidates were not appreciated by the US administration; finally, the US  selected and appointed its own American choice.




December 2022

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