Apr

23

52 Comments

  1. haha  

    i work in the east asian library and we have to tell guys (or the same guy?) to stop looking at porn on our computers at least once a week.

    • youngin  

      can we please start barring old people from our classes, libraries, etc.? other elite schools, even urban ones, don't seem to have this problem. I blame GS and certain inter-library loan connections with the NYPL which allow any member of the hoi polloi to trek the new york sludge upon our otherwise clean, pervert-free campus. we have gates for a reason, they ought to be used more judiciously.

      • DHI  

        "elite schools"

        "hoi polloi"

        "new york sludge"

        "gates for a reason"

        CCC? Columbia Country Club?

        Look, I'm not going to be able to convince you that you're a douchebag, but I'm going to say it anyway: you're a douchebag. Indeed, a big elitist douchebag.



        See this is why I hate the "Ivy League"

        • get out  

          you hate the ivy league? why are you here? or why are you on this blog? either stay in community college, or go there, since it seems to embody the ethos you so admire (everything and everyone belongs!)

          • commentator  

            Setting aside for a minute the misguided vision of society (and the rules of capitalization) that referring to "new york sludge" implies, you don't seem to understand what being in New York City means: it means the school is in New York City. This is a very impractical location if you do not want people from New York around. Let me explain why that is: because people from New York are in New York City. Whether or not "the the many" bother you, it is beneficial to our relationship to the community (which helps you even if you don't regard them subjectively as people) to not be a collection of assholes to them for little to no concrete reason. Futhermore, I believe "college walk" is actually 116th Street - as in a street on which hoi polloi walk when it is the way they which to travel. The ILL, for its part, is beneficial to us as well as the community because it makes more books available to more people - including us.



            But it is not your failure to accept the practicality or factuality of our relationship with the city that bothers me as much as it is your elitist pretensions. The "Ivy League" - that is, the idea of people attending a group of eight schools being "better" than other people is harmful because of the flaws in that idea. Besides the problems with class hierarchy itself, the semi-arbitrary admissions process, and the fact that academic/monetary accomplishment is not correlated with "better" behavior means that you have mistaken ideas about the relative "worth" of people.



            I'm not arguing to change our admissions policy, and not necessarily arguing against raising academic standards for GS (because I think the most qualified students would still get in.) But gating off our campus and shutting people off from our libraries is not necessary to having a working university. Futhermore, as a few people here have argued, looking down on people is not a necessary result of believing that we must keep down the number of people in the university. Pretension and condescension are necessary components of elitist colleges, not elite colleges. People who go to Columbia for its place in the "hierarchy" and not for any real benefits including but not limited to good courses, location, community, or connections to other programs are here for invented reasons (and also probably applied to "better" schools and failed). The only practical reason to endorse elitism is because it increases your relative chance of being hired, but if you're endorsing a philosophy because you believe its acceptance benefits you you're straight up scum.



            Telling that poster to go to community college (if he does indeed go to Columbia) is misguided because it assumes that by rejecting the ideology that in my estimation the school does not even have anymore (although some people still retain it) he also rejects the actual non-illusory advantages of the school.



            On some level, whatever, I don't know why I got into this. But on another level, you're putting a lot of stock in this foolish ideology. I guess I'm lucky to be leaving when I am, because in my last year here I've encountered more elitism than in the first three. I guess it's the rise in selectivity of Columbia encouraging more should-be-Princetoners to come here.

          • straight up scum  

            "The only practical reason to endorse elitism is because it increases your relative chance of being hired, but if you're endorsing a philosophy because you believe its acceptance benefits you you're straight up scum."



            I actually don't see anything wrong with that. I guess I'm straight up scum then.

        • Ummm  

          I'm a big fan of Columbia and the Ivy League. However, I think one has to differentiate between healthy elitism and condescension. Denigrating others is an unfortunate habit of certain individuals, whether or not they are in an "elitist" environment. Elitist denigration is particularly pernicious because there's a pseudo-objective measure to back it up: much like calling someone short, fat, etc.



          I'm all about indulging in the pride of being a Columbian. There’s a lot to be said for being a member of what is close to (and, in my opinion, will be soon enough be) the top school in the world. If you make it in, you have a lot to be proud of (and thankful for).



          However, merely attending Columbia, like being a member of any "elite" academic organization, does not absolutely entail intelligence, drive, elitism or much else. On the other hand, the need to make obnoxious and divisive comments which assert the inferiority of other people (think "new york sludge") is almost without fail coupled with a poor personality.



          I love Columbia. I’m proud to be here and I think I worked harder than a lot of other people to get here. I think people are, on average, extremely intelligent, hardworking and interesting. However, I would rather people demonstrate however grand they believe they are with actions rather than insecure words.



          For the most part, people here are very good about having pride in themselves rather than antipathy towards others. I find myself prying to find out what amazing things the people I know have accomplished. But when people feel the need to disparage others, it gets ugly.

          • but you realize  

            everything that makes you proud to attend columbia is enabled by elitism inherent in the admissions process. you can't escape that contradiction by claiming it's possible to simultaneously be proud to be here without looking down on others, if only implicitly (because no one would dare admit this without the cloak of anonymity)

        • good  

          go somewhere else please

      • the old folks  

        the old folks are a lot more likely to be "life-long learners," not GS students. and I don't get the make-fun-of-GS thing. I'm in CC but I like a lot the GS people in my classes etc. better than a lot of the CC/SEAS/Barnard ones.

        • Good point  

          And they are usually here for the education, rather than for the reputation.



          By far the most intelligent class I've been in in my Columbia career was a summer class with nine GS students, a Fordham student, and four Columbians.

  2. seriously  

    what is wrong with looking at porn in the lerner computer labs. is pornography a crime?

  3. man

    there have been way too many elitist douchebags posting in the comments recently.



    "community college" insults--is this high school?

    • i'm serious  

      columbia and community colleges have different philosophies. it astounds me that people who think columbia is a socially unjust place choose to embrace it by coming here, then spend so much time degrading it for the very qualities they themselves bought into.



      it's not a matter of insulting anyone's intelligence. I just wonder what people are thinking when they attend an elite school while simultaneously talking them down.

  4. Stfu  

    Elitists, anti-elitists? No. Just obnoxious and ignorant, all of you.



    It seems like anyone who wants to make a statement on the Bwog these days thinks it's necessary to do so in an ironically (or not so) elitist manner, or bash elitism. Ponder this: you're not adding anything to the discussion.



    Er, porn is no crime, but if you're supposed to be wearing clothes in Lerner, you should probably only look at pictures in Lerner if the people in them are clothed.

  5. Ummm  

    that's a pretty close-minded way to look at it. have you ever made a good batch of cookies and been proud of it? i guess you probably feel that your cookies are better than other people's cookies. but does that mean that you look down on others who make cookies you don't care for as much?

    is having hispanic, black or gay pride inherently racist or otherwise discriminatory?



    hell, i did really well on a paper and i'm really proud of it. does this mean that i look down on the other kids in my class?

    • why  

      are you proud to be here? because columbia is a good school right? how is it that columbia is a good school? other schools must therefore be much lower on the hierarchy.



      there's a difference between generic school pride and pride in a school's position within that hierarchy. I would argue that most people are proud that they are attending columbia because of the latter.

      • I don't follow

        your argument insofar as a perceived heirarchy of schools. You seem to imply that because Columbia is so selective, the people who get in must be the best of the best. The University of Chicago - arguably one of the top schools in the country, if not the top - has an acceptance rate that hovers around 40%, primarily because its reputation for intellectual rigor scares away lesser applicants. In short, it self-selects. Columbia's desirability among prep school folk only says something of the 9.6% of applicants who get in, if the other 90% is as qualified as you'd like them to be.

        • Statistics lie...  

          thank you for grounding the discussion. I know some absolutely intelligent people at Chicago, very fun people, people who think and write and design as brilliantly as our best.



          Yes, fun does go to die there, but at least they have the balls to admit it - that's fun in itself. Here at Columbia we don't know how to make fun of ourselves, and for that reason, a lot of incredibly stupid people apply thinking they'll have an easy, fun time while earning their six-figure tickets to six-figure salaries. Some of them are accepted. Have you ever read our digitalia?

  6. I find  

    the rhetoric of many here troubling. why is someone a "fucking moron" because they challenge the dominant discourse of opinion on this site or on campus? even if presented with tactless rhetoric, isn't their content worthy of fair critique? the poster who made the "community college" reference may sound crude, but I think he/she's being shot down because he/she's pointing to a contradiction in the internal perceptions of many here which make them rather uncomfortable, and they choose to insult and belittle him/her rather than confront this problem.

  7. Ummm  

    sure. so?



    do you deny that there's a difference between lighthearted elitism and elitism which is blatantly critical of others?



    think of it as the difference between nietzsche's chivalry and "slave" morality or ressentiment. it depends on the mean against which one judges the quality of an institution. when i got in to columbia, i was sure that people would praise me. but it was because i was above the mean in terms of being admitted not because they were below the mean. does that make sense? sure, you can look for elitism and you'll find it, but to assume that any elitism is pernicious is too sweeping.



    on another note, one must differentiate between institutions and people. columbia's an amazing institution and, in many senses, "better" than other institutions. but does that mean that columbians believe that the people that attend those other institutions are less intelligent? the smartest people i knew went to less elite schools.



    when I played little league baseball, my friend, who was one of the best players on the league, got stuck on a persistently losing team. my team beat his every game we played each other. i was aware and proud of beating him but that never meant i thought of him as a worse baseball player for it.

  8. Ummm  

    hey, i have a new topic. let's hate on princeton!

  9. Thought  

    Would this discussion have occurred at a community college?

  10. Umm..

    The reason U of Chicago has such a high acceptance rate is that no one wants to live in Chicago.

    • wait  

      It's not really about Chicago as a city as much as the area it is in, and, first and foremost, the reputation of the school as a place "where fun goes to die." It's not necessarily a rejection of the city of Chicago (a lot of schools do not have great locations) as much as it is a rejection of the particular atmosphere of that school.

  11. McFister

    Fun really does go to die there. I know this from experience.

  12. chicago  

    Chicago's an awesome city... I would have gone to UChicago if I wanted to work. Fuck that.

  13. Gene Upshaw

    The best classes I've had at Columbia have been small seminars made up mostly of GS and visiting students. To be fair, I find the older kids generally have more to add than the prep school elite that know nothing other than money and how to study for the SATs.



    Not that a small number of CC/SEAS students have an inferiority complex or anything.

    • psshh  

      i hate it when GS students and all the other backdoor admits justify themselves with besides-the-point claims about how "interesting" they are. the WORST classes i've had here are the ones with vocal GS/visiting students. the BEST ones are those with primarily non-athlete non-legacy columbia COLLEGE asian/jewish/white kids*, i.e. those students who truly came to columbia on their own intellectual merit. the quality of these students' analysis and input correlates with their significantly higher iq, as indicated by their necessarily higher SAT scores and gpas, and accordingly it's THEIR postgrad contributions to the world that will preserve columbia's great prestige to the benefit of everyone.



      *i'd love to compare CC/SEAS/GS distribution statistics between a course like Analytic Number Theory and some shitty american studies class

      • Congrats

        Looks like we've found bwog's moron of the day.

        • no...  

          Let's be balanced here: in at least one respect, #36 is right. Affirmative action in all its forms lowers the bar for minority students (minority being purely a positive term arbitrarily defined by the admissions office) and simultaneously raises it for non-minority students. In the real world, that means that on average white students have to be smarter than black or Latino/a students to get in to the elite college of their choice. I'm not attaching any value to that statement; that's just an empirical fact of the affirmative action system. The pendulum can swing both ways, as we've seen in the case of gender balance -- due to their burgeoning ranks, it's now more difficult for women to get into college than men on average nationally. Hopefully, in the case of race, everything will balance itself out in the coming century or two (due to affirmative action, please note), and meritocratic admissions can reign once more.



          As to SAT, GPA et al.: they are fairly objective measures of a person's intellectual and academic capacity. Sorry. That doesn't mean they define the worth of a person; again, I'm speaking positively, not normatively. They're just a measurement tool.

          • GS  

            If you are speaking purely within the realm of academics, you're correct. #36 made some fairly large leaps of logic:

            1. CC students have higher GPAs than GS and the "backdoor admissions" (which from what I've heard is false, but I'm willing to chalk up the difference to the smaller number of GS students in the hard science)

            2. CC students contribute more to society after graduation than GS students (good luck proving THAT one)



            I think your comparison to Affirmative Action is way off base. GS students do not have the option of applying to CC, and frankly, you do not want us competing with you. In the real world, a resume carries a lot more weight than SATs, IQ scores, or a GPA. That may sound inflammatory, but I'm trying to point out that we are preparing apples and oranges. Frankly, I think the fact that this debate exists is a sign of pettyness and lack of maturity on all our parts. The fact is, if a student can pass the courses they take they have shown that they deserve to be here. Marginalizing students because they went through a less rigorous screening process is at best petty.

          • ha  

            While I wish I was preparing apples and oranges(delicious!) I intended to write comparing.

          • CC  

            i'm sure that GS students, and everyone else that gets to columbia on a different basis than academic strength, can still contribute to society, but these contributions are much less likely to be academic/intellectual in nature. fine your colorful resume might score you a second round at jp morgan, but at this point its your resume and not your CU education that's doing the work, and grad schools are a different story. 'fewer GS students apply to top grad schools--they self-select' you respond? maybe, but that's a worry on its own. that non-AA CC group mentioned in 36 seems to contain the highest proportion (of CU ug programs) of people who, since high school, have been serious about academic success, people who didn't decide to fuck around for a decade after hs. don't call me elitist; i went to a public hs and i'm here on fin aid, but i've known i wanted to learn chemistry all along. granted there are some truly talented GS people, those who were in good schools but dropped out to pursue opera singing or whatever, and they probably do have minds on par w/ the CC student body. but then there's the montana community college types that come here and take all the bullshit 2000 level classes and brag about how they're ivy league.

          • still  

            dude i bet at least 3/4 of the 90.4% of applicants to CC can pass the courses you're talking about...theres a reason why they dont/shouldnt have the opportunity to do so

          • still  

            that is, 90.4% of applicants to CC *that are denied admission*

      • GS  

        I love how people who have accomplished nothing in their lives love to point to test scores as a measure of merit. This is the kind of guy who drops his IQ score within 5 minutes of meeting someone.

      • Nevermind that...  

        the point of the original SAT was to make sure Jews scored lower, even though the average Jew has an IQ 15 points higher than the next pale-skinner.

      • double legacy  

        why do you have to bash legacies? Do you know any legacies, or do you merely assume they're all rich WASPs who went to Choate? Are you really that thick that you don't recognize, perhaps, just perhaps the kind of people who were smart enough to graduate from columbia, might have smarter than average children and might raise them in a stable, intellectually stimulating environment? Perhaps even instill in them some Columbia Pride? Before you bash legacies, maybe you should step back and think, "If I have kids, do I want them to be smart and able to get into Columbia, like I did?" Do your research, the legacies that get in (and many/most don't) are highly qualified, and most if not all would have gotten in without being a legacy. They have , on average, a higher SAT score, higher rank, and come from more prestigious/competitive high school than the average accepted applicant. I'm not saying they're smarter, I'm just saying they're surely not dumber or less qualified than you.

        • Umm...

          Considering legacy admissions were implemented in order to allow moronic offspring of Columbia alumni to attend the university in the face of academically superior Jewish Eastern European immigrant children, bashing legacies is a no brainer.

          • double legacy  

            Well, if you assume the offspring of Columbia alumni are "moronic", it probably would be a no brainer. That is not the case at all, and if you want to be racist about it, there are many jewish legacies, probably more jewish legacies than WASP legacies at this point.

  14. Engel's law  

    if you don't like the people on this blog, ignore it, and tell everyone else who doesn't like this blog to ignore it, and when it stops getting hits except from the people you dislike, and its numbers drop, bwog will adapt to regain your interest, or else it wasn't that interesting to start with and really should be ignored.

  15. dude  

    Don't knock people who haven't known what they wanted to do or fucked around. A lot of times they/we do more than people who are set from the beginning.

  16. Sherman Klump

    We get it. There are many different types of students in GS, and generalizing the division as a bunch of 30-somethings probably isn't all that accurate. To be fair, however, the fact that this debate persists pisses me the fuck off.



    If you’re a pissed off CC/SEAS student, nobody forced you to come here; unless, of course, you’re here because you couldn’t get into H/Y/P and this was your “best” option, thinking nothing of the university. There are plenty of schools out there that will allow you to debate the merits of society amongst your teenage peers. At some, I bet they don’t even allow women!

  17. Seth Low

    Did you know that your very own Nicholas Murray Butler (the dude with the building that many of you are probably reading this from) led the SAT charge in an effort to root out Jews, or the so-called Jewish conspiracy.



    Guess things didn't go as planned.

  18. Umm  

    wow. this forum really deteriorated quickly. why the infighting? i'm a cc kid. i know some dumb gs students, some dumb cc students and some dumb seas students. i know a lot of brilliant kids from each of the schools.



    on the gs issue, there are a lot of gs kids (in the broadest sense) that messed around during high school and weren't intellectually motivated then. but that doesn't mean that they aren't brilliant and more academically oriented now than your average cc student. it says something that years down the line they return to school. if resume is all that matters in getting a job (as claimed several earlier posts), it's probably more than the diploma they're seeking. from my experience, that's been the case. there's something to be said for taking time off and gaining some maturity. i've never felt more intellectually directed or superior than my cc friends who took a year off afterhigh school. rather, i'm impressed by what they've done. i myself am taking next year off to pursue other interests.



    i would argue that i know at least a few kids who earned their way here by doing a lot of amazing things, getting great test scores and having a great gpa that aren't necessarily all that intellectually motivated now that they're here. almost no one i know even tries to do all of the reading that's assigned - except the gs kids. after all, they pay their way through here, while most of us don't have to worry about that at the moment.



    and legacy kids? i love 'em! legacy is good for columbia - particularly if, as 48 claims, their statistics are, on average, higher. i don't doubt it. i have yet to meet a legacy who i could pick out as less intelligent than other students here. is all of this anti-legacy sentiment built on anything resembling experience? do you actually know any more less intelligent legacies than non-legacies? i'm genuinely interested. with our acceptance rate, it becomes a pretty arbitrary game. so what if out of the two candidates who would be overqualified for any other school the legacy gets preferential treatment? perhaps admission should have just shot dice instead? heads or tails?



    i'll take the perfectly qualified candidate who is a part of the columbia community long before getting here over the other equally qualified candidate any day. along with his (/her) qualifications, the legacy potentially brings money, which betters our education, and pride, which columbia was completely lacking in until just a few years ago.



    god bless legacies and god bless anyone, gs, seas, cc or barnard, who walks into a classroom and wants to participate. i learn from the student dialogue as much as i do from the professor - no matter how brilliant he/she is.

© 2006-2015 Blue and White Publishing Inc.