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"Academia does not indoctrinate," says Pinker

dylancatlow
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7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
While Steven Pinker acknowledges that academia has a liberal bent, he rejects the claim made by many conservatives that academia indoctrinates its students into accepting leftist viewpoints, saying that it wouldn't work even if professors tried. As evidence, he points to a recent article by Colleen Flaherty, a reporter at Inside Higher Ed.

Let's examine her arguments one by one.

First, she argues that college students aren't actually that liberal. When they say they like socialism they're thinking Sweden and not the Soviet Union. Also, economic professors tend not to identify as "socialist". I accept the facts but I don't even see how this is an argument.

Second, she refers to a study which finds that the greatest influence comes from a student's peers rather than their professors. In other words, college students are so liberal because their friends are so liberal. This, of course, does nothing to undermine the claim that college professors play a role in creating this liberal atmosphere. Is it implausible that the bias of college professors is amplified by those around you? Isn't that how indoctrination always works?

Third, she points to additional research by the same team which finds that students who perceive a gap between their views and the views of their professors tend to withdraw from the class and give those teachers lower ratings. Rather than surrendering to ideas they disagree with they push back against them. I don't see how this argument makes sense. The point of indoctrination is not to get people to like ideas they disagree with, it's to get them to accept those ideas and stop disagreeing with them. The fact that college conservatives resist the liberal bias of their teachers merely proves that liberal indoctrination doesn't work on everyone, or alternatively, that the indoctrination takes time to have an effect if we're talking about students just beginning college.

Finally, she argues that students entering college tend to be more liberal to start with, so if college graduates end up liberal it's because they came to college that way. What would be interesting to know is the difference in political orientation between college freshman and college seniors. Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
dylancatlow
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7/27/2016 5:08:07 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/27/2016 5:05:06 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
What's wrong with trying to be like Sweden? It's 90+ percent white people!

I'm not sure if that's what the leftists have in mind c:
Greyparrot
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7/27/2016 5:17:18 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/27/2016 5:08:07 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 7/27/2016 5:05:06 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
What's wrong with trying to be like Sweden? It's 90+ percent white people!

I'm not sure if that's what the leftists have in mind c:

lol sorry, heard that yesterday on the Gavin McInnes.
Emmarie
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7/28/2016 12:11:27 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
While Steven Pinker acknowledges that academia has a liberal bent, he rejects the claim made by many conservatives that academia indoctrinates its students into accepting leftist viewpoints, saying that it wouldn't work even if professors tried. As evidence, he points to a recent article by Colleen Flaherty, a reporter at Inside Higher Ed.

Let's examine her arguments one by one.

First, she argues that college students aren't actually that liberal. When they say they like socialism they're thinking Sweden and not the Soviet Union. Also, economic professors tend not to identify as "socialist". I accept the facts but I don't even see how this is an argument.

Second, she refers to a study which finds that the greatest influence comes from a student's peers rather than their professors. In other words, college students are so liberal because their friends are so liberal. This, of course, does nothing to undermine the claim that college professors play a role in creating this liberal atmosphere. Is it implausible that the bias of college professors is amplified by those around you? Isn't that how indoctrination always works?

Third, she points to additional research by the same team which finds that students who perceive a gap between their views and the views of their professors tend to withdraw from the class and give those teachers lower ratings. Rather than surrendering to ideas they disagree with they push back against them. I don't see how this argument makes sense. The point of indoctrination is not to get people to like ideas they disagree with, it's to get them to accept those ideas and stop disagreeing with them. The fact that college conservatives resist the liberal bias of their teachers merely proves that liberal indoctrination doesn't work on everyone, or alternatively, that the indoctrination takes time to have an effect if we're talking about students just beginning college.

Finally, she argues that students entering college tend to be more liberal to start with, so if college graduates end up liberal it's because they came to college that way. What would be interesting to know is the difference in political orientation between college freshman and college seniors. Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.

This post needs more reads and comments!

Very interesting study. I attempted to return to College in 2007 when I was 37. I only took College 201 to reacquaint myself with College writing. I figured I should refresh my writing skills before enrolling full time. The professor (her 1st year and younger than me) was completely hostile to my life experiences in contrast with the SJW agenda she was schooled in, even though I have liberal social leanings but fiscally conservative. I ended up getting suspended for a semester (non academic) for telling the class that they should ask for their money back since she never required or graded one College research paper - lol. I never went back.

The students in the class were all under 23, and "ate up" everything she instructed. It's sad that indoctrination is taking place. I'd be for re-educating students about racial injustices, past and present in this country, but expecting them to think out solutions, rather than teaching the proper way to remedy things.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
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7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
While Steven Pinker acknowledges that academia has a liberal bent, he rejects the claim made by many conservatives that academia indoctrinates its students into accepting leftist viewpoints, saying that it wouldn't work even if professors tried. As evidence, he points to a recent article by Colleen Flaherty, a reporter at Inside Higher Ed.

Let's examine her arguments one by one.

First, she argues that college students aren't actually that liberal. When they say they like socialism they're thinking Sweden and not the Soviet Union. Also, economic professors tend not to identify as "socialist". I accept the facts but I don't even see how this is an argument.
I agree.
Second, she refers to a study which finds that the greatest influence comes from a student's peers rather than their professors. In other words, college students are so liberal because their friends are so liberal. This, of course, does nothing to undermine the claim that college professors play a role in creating this liberal atmosphere. Is it implausible that the bias of college professors is amplified by those around you? Isn't that how indoctrination always works?
From personal experience, I think it's more of the latter: the bias of peers amplify those of college professors. Here in Hong Kong, it's more fashionable to be a rightist among college students, and they hate the leftist professors in those departments, lol.
So I think, from personal experience, that peer pressure is a more significant factor.
Third, she points to additional research by the same team which finds that students who perceive a gap between their views and the views of their professors tend to withdraw from the class and give those teachers lower ratings. Rather than surrendering to ideas they disagree with they push back against them. I don't see how this argument makes sense. The point of indoctrination is not to get people to like ideas they disagree with, it's to get them to accept those ideas and stop disagreeing with them. The fact that college conservatives resist the liberal bias of their teachers merely proves that liberal indoctrination doesn't work on everyone, or alternatively, that the indoctrination takes time to have an effect if we're talking about students just beginning college.
Perhaps, but despite the left leanings of some of our humanities and social science departments, it's very rare for me to see any students espouse leftist views publicly, except those from the Mainland. If you're deeply rightist to start with, it's unlikely that you'll be indoctrinated by the profs (youths of today - and in general - tend to be rebellious anyway.)
Finally, she argues that students entering college tend to be more liberal to start with, so if college graduates end up liberal it's because they came to college that way. What would be interesting to know is the difference in political orientation between college freshman and college seniors.
Yep.
Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
vortex86
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7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.

Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
dylancatlow
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7/29/2016 5:59:04 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

Yes, the average professor is well to the left of the average citizen, and a lot of them don't even try to conceal their prejudice against people on the right.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
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7/30/2016 12:12:02 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.
True, so I think conservatives wouldn't have problems studying STEM subjects in college.
Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
Well, not exactly the opposite - we have one rightist social science department, but at least two other social science departments and a significant chunk of the humanities are overtly leftist. One of the humanities departments has courses like 'queer theory', 'postmodernism' and 'feminist studies' - suffice it to say that I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. :)
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
Diqiucun_Cunmin
Posts: 2,710
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7/30/2016 12:12:30 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/29/2016 5:59:04 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

Yes, the average professor is well to the left of the average citizen, and a lot of them don't even try to conceal their prejudice against people on the right.

Lol, so even STEM professors are significantly more to the left?
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
vortex86
Posts: 559
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7/30/2016 12:23:18 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 12:12:02 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.
True, so I think conservatives wouldn't have problems studying STEM subjects in college.
Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
Well, not exactly the opposite - we have one rightist social science department, but at least two other social science departments and a significant chunk of the humanities are overtly leftist. One of the humanities departments has courses like 'queer theory', 'postmodernism' and 'feminist studies' - suffice it to say that I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. :)

Agreed STEM programs are apolitical and not an issue. Prerequisites for STEM programs (general ed courses) are still predominantly liberal and I'd argue that students looking up to those in a position of authority and as a teacher/one with more experience. College age kids are more susceptible to indoctrination. If this wasn't true, then companies wouldn't market brand loyalty to children.
dylancatlow
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7/30/2016 12:39:01 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 12:12:30 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 5:59:04 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

Yes, the average professor is well to the left of the average citizen, and a lot of them don't even try to conceal their prejudice against people on the right.

Lol, so even STEM professors are significantly more to the left?

They're definitely among the least liberal, but in those fields the politics of the professors is hardly relevant anyway.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
Posts: 2,710
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7/30/2016 11:35:26 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 12:23:18 AM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:12:02 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.
True, so I think conservatives wouldn't have problems studying STEM subjects in college.
Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
Well, not exactly the opposite - we have one rightist social science department, but at least two other social science departments and a significant chunk of the humanities are overtly leftist. One of the humanities departments has courses like 'queer theory', 'postmodernism' and 'feminist studies' - suffice it to say that I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. :)

Agreed STEM programs are apolitical and not an issue. Prerequisites for STEM programs (general ed courses) are still predominantly liberal
True.
and I'd argue that students looking up to those in a position of authority and as a teacher/one with more experience. College age kids are more susceptible to indoctrination. If this wasn't true, then companies wouldn't market brand loyalty to children.
I'm not sure I'd agree with this. College-age kids aren't 'children' any longer. They are rebellious youths, and I don't think they'll believe what the professors so easily, unless they already lean to the left or something.
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
Diqiucun_Cunmin
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7/30/2016 11:48:58 AM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 12:39:01 AM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:12:30 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 5:59:04 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/27/2016 5:01:38 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
Anyway, if conservatives are right that academia is a liberal indoctrination mill, then it's hardly surprising that fewer of them would want to go into it. What about the conservatives or moderates who go anyway? Surely, some of them will grow tired of disagreeing with everyone around them and just become liberals. More than anything, this helps explain how academia got to be so liberal.
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

Yes, the average professor is well to the left of the average citizen, and a lot of them don't even try to conceal their prejudice against people on the right.

Lol, so even STEM professors are significantly more to the left?

They're definitely among the least liberal, but in those fields the politics of the professors is hardly relevant anyway.

Yeah.
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
vortex86
Posts: 559
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7/30/2016 2:45:05 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 11:35:26 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:23:18 AM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:12:02 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.
True, so I think conservatives wouldn't have problems studying STEM subjects in college.
Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
Well, not exactly the opposite - we have one rightist social science department, but at least two other social science departments and a significant chunk of the humanities are overtly leftist. One of the humanities departments has courses like 'queer theory', 'postmodernism' and 'feminist studies' - suffice it to say that I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. :)

Agreed STEM programs are apolitical and not an issue. Prerequisites for STEM programs (general ed courses) are still predominantly liberal
True.
and I'd argue that students looking up to those in a position of authority and as a teacher/one with more experience. College age kids are more susceptible to indoctrination. If this wasn't true, then companies wouldn't market brand loyalty to children.
I'm not sure I'd agree with this. College-age kids aren't 'children' any longer. They are rebellious youths, and I don't think they'll believe what the professors so easily, unless they already lean to the left or something.

I disagree and it's quite evident by the movements that are practically fads. Even the military recruits young straight out of high school students because they are more moldable.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
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7/30/2016 2:52:55 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 2:45:05 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/30/2016 11:35:26 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:23:18 AM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/30/2016 12:12:02 AM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
At 7/29/2016 3:24:30 PM, vortex86 wrote:
At 7/29/2016 2:37:34 PM, Diqiucun_Cunmin wrote:
Probably, but is liberalism that prevalent in academia? I know that they've gained a lot of ground in the humanities and social sciences, but have they really taken hold in the STEMs? (I mean, if the authors of 'Fashionable nonsense' and 'Higher Superstitution' represent their fields, probably not?)

(One of the social science departments at my school leans to the right, in fact.)

You asked if academia has taken hold in STEMS. There is not much room for political ideology to be put on display in those subjects so I don't think it would matter. The reason social sciences are mentioned more as they are the classes that are open and supposed to be fostering discussion and learning about the government.
True, so I think conservatives wouldn't have problems studying STEM subjects in college.
Also, Hong Kong is not at all representative of the US academia. I find it amusing that it's the opposite there though.
Well, not exactly the opposite - we have one rightist social science department, but at least two other social science departments and a significant chunk of the humanities are overtly leftist. One of the humanities departments has courses like 'queer theory', 'postmodernism' and 'feminist studies' - suffice it to say that I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole. :)

Agreed STEM programs are apolitical and not an issue. Prerequisites for STEM programs (general ed courses) are still predominantly liberal
True.
and I'd argue that students looking up to those in a position of authority and as a teacher/one with more experience. College age kids are more susceptible to indoctrination. If this wasn't true, then companies wouldn't market brand loyalty to children.
I'm not sure I'd agree with this. College-age kids aren't 'children' any longer. They are rebellious youths, and I don't think they'll believe what the professors so easily, unless they already lean to the left or something.

I disagree and it's quite evident by the movements that are practically fads. Even the military recruits young straight out of high school students because they are more moldable.

Let's agree to disagree then. I guess perhaps kids in the US are less rebellious (although, frankly, I would doubt that.)
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...
YYW
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7/30/2016 4:09:37 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
I don't really care what Stephen Pinker thinks. He's little more than a less articulate version of Malcolm Gladwell.

Btw. Gladwell is awesome. But Pinker is not.
Tsar of DDO
dylancatlow
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7/30/2016 4:59:46 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 4:09:37 PM, YYW wrote:
I don't really care what Stephen Pinker thinks. He's little more than a less articulate version of Malcolm Gladwell.

Btw. Gladwell is awesome. But Pinker is not.

lol what. Pinker and Gladwell don't even occupy the same niche, so how is Pinker a worse version of Gladwell? Gladwell is fun to read but he's hardly a profound thinker.
Diqiucun_Cunmin
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7/30/2016 5:40:02 PM
Posted: 4 months ago
At 7/30/2016 4:09:37 PM, YYW wrote:
I don't really care what Stephen Pinker thinks. He's little more than a less articulate version of Malcolm Gladwell.

Btw. Gladwell is awesome. But Pinker is not.

I think you ought to look into some of Pinker's scientific work. For instance, he, along with Ray Jackendoff, were among the few researchers within the generative enterprise who crafted articulate rebuttals of the bad science Chomsky has advocated since the 1990s, as evidenced in their famous (2005) replies to Hauser, Chomsky and Fitch (2002) and Fitch, Hauser and Chomsky (2005). He is also, despite popular belief, a 'moderate' in the symbolist-connectionist debate, and used the example of regular and irregular verbs to show that both symbolic computation and association have their place in constructing psychologically plausible models of language processing and acquisition.
The thing is, I hate relativism. I hate relativism more than I hate everything else, excepting, maybe, fibreglass powerboats... What it overlooks, to put it briefly and crudely, is the fixed structure of human nature. - Jerry Fodor

Don't be a stat cynic:
http://www.debate.org...

Response to conservative views on deforestation:
http://www.debate.org...

Topics I'd like to debate (not debating ATM): http://tinyurl.com...