I read Eric Rauchway’s latest post on the destruction of the UC system a couple of hours ago, and I still can’t believe UC President Mark Yudof actually said this:
Many of our, if I can put it this way, businesses are in good shape. We’re doing very well there. Our hospitals are full, our medical business, our medical research, the patient care—so we have this core problem, who’s gonna pay the salary of the English Department? We have to have it, who’s gonna pay it and Sociology, and the humanities, and that’s where we’re running into trouble.
Who’s gonna pay it? Um…the State. That’s why we have public universities, right?
OK, I realize this is California we’re talking about, so let me try to answer that question differently. Eric’s answer to that question casts doubt on the idea that humanities department don’t pay for themselves. For sake of argument, I’ll assume they don’t.
Why shouldn’t business and medical schools pay for humanities departments? After all, doctors and executives have to write, don’t they? Nurses and middle managers are citizens, aren’t they? After all, there are plenty of colleges without business or medical schools, but there aren’t a lot of business and medical schools without humanities departments somewhere in the university.
Without the humanities, it’s not a university. Make the humanities pay for themselves and you might as well just close down every public institution in the country. Hopefully, that’s not their plan already.