Comment piece by Kev
“It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.”
– The Art of War, Sun Tzu
Looking at the reports from the march against GU cuts I feel saddened that every comment defends courses in terms of their commercial viability and monetary worth. The arts are valuable because they produce “work ready graduates, able to transfer skills across many sectors”. Foreign languages need to be saved as they “create trade with other countries”. Nurses hold aloft banners promoting their employment rate and profitability.
The problem is that we have already lost the argument on commercial and financial grounds – after all these are “tough times”, “we are all in this together” and “hard decisions must be made for greater recovery”. Trying to argue on commercial grounds belittles the non-commercial nature of a university.
Courses should be defended on the basis that they enrich and improve our society. Learning should be held aloft without the need for market viability. We have to stop price-tags being placed on the priceless.
I started with a quote from Sun Tzu and I’ll end it with two video’s I feel are apt. Enjoy: