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Universities are their own world

Reader comment on item: My Gloom: Back to September 10

Submitted by Lawrence Stark (United States), Dec 20, 2005 at 12:37

Regarding your comments about Harvard and Georgetown accepting money from a Saudi price: It should not surprise anybody that a university would accept money from an organization not in the best interests of this country. Generally speaking, major universities do not view themselves as a part of the United States, but rather as international organizations in pursuit of higher truths, a better world order, blah blah blah. In this regard, they function much like the major religious denominations. This is nothing new. In the late 80s, the Media Lab at MIT worked with corporations and universities abroad, especially Japan, sharing critical concepts and research of great value in the competitive international marketplace. For this, MIT was paid handsomely. Money, in fact, is the major preoccupation of university faculties and administrators. Money, and lots of it, is required to maintain their incredible lifestyle: lifetime employment, freedom from external pressures, plenty of opportunities to add to their salaries by consulting, etc. Let us not fool ourselves into thinking that universities will pursue policies for the benefit of the United States.
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