Degree in Conservative Arts At Last Posted on Nov 24, 1996 by Scott Cawelti 11-24-96 All over America, college students continue to sign up and line up for required liberal arts courses. Educators insist that students need exposure to a variety of disciplines in order to become broadly educated. No narrow nerds or corporate cogs, they say. We want flexi- ble, intelligent, liberally educated citizens of the world, able to respond appropriate to a rapidly changing environment. So whether students like it or not, at most universities, they must take a variety of philosophy, literature, history, science, and mathematics courses, not to mention physical education and social science studies. However, most students find these courses a bore. Since many professors prefer to work in their specialities, liberal arts aren't often well taught. Moreover, in a conservative political world, the liberal arts seem downright irrelevant. So it's time for a revamp. How about a Conservative Arts curriculum? Corporation executives would surely flock to hire graduates with degrees in the Conservative Arts. At LAST, they would ex claim: A curriculum that fits the real world. No more ivory tower pretenses. And no more liberals with their outdated liberal arts forced down our throats. So, what might a Conservative Arts curriculum look like? Here are a few courses that would surely pass muster in any conservative catalog of Important Things: STASIS 101: The art of inertia. Students will learn to successfully resist change in all its forms, no matter how at- tractive and beneficial. Practical experience offered in road blocking and bottlenecking, not to mention stonewalling. INTRODUCTION TO PATRIOTISM. Blind loyalty for fun and prof- it. "My country right or wrong," "Love it or leave it," both examined as potential national slogans. Daily pledge of alle- giance required. Prerequisite: ability to sing "Star Spangled Banner" from memory, but not necessarily in tune. Flag burners will be identified and humiliated. GOUGING 101. Theory and practice of all the traffic will bear. Recent gouging variants, including "Trickle-Down," "Supply Side" and "Voodoo Economics" examined in detail. Students encour- aged to read instructor's lips. Special sections offered: gouging the environment, gouging the government, gouging poor people, gouging charitable foundations. Not offered: gouging rich people. NOSTALGIA 101: Lessons on how to live in the past. Students learn to get along without the present. Costumes not provided. Old radio and TV programs, movies, and novels read and appreciated for what they were: a powerful means of avoiding anything real. Prerequisite: STASIS 101. FITNESS AND HEALTH: AEROBIC WALKING BACKWARD. Benefits of backwards walking demonstrated and practiced. Variety of ap- proaches offered, all of which allow slow forward movement with eyes firmed fixed on the past. Prerequisite: STASIS 101. THE GOLDEN AGE OF POLITICS: The Eisenhower, Nixon, and Reagan eras. Great achievements by the greatest politicians of the last fifty years. Major speeches and books by Ike, Dick, and Ron will be studied in detail. Some students may require nausea medication. Prerequisite: GOUGING 101. THE GOLDEN AGE OF ART AND POETRY: Norman Rockwell and Joyce Kilmer. Appreciating paintings and poems that tell us what we want to see and hear. Emphasis on perfect families, perfect trees, (Kilmer's "Trees" a primary text) and perfect people. THE GOLDEN AGE OF FAMILIES: In-depth studies of Ozzie and Harriet Nelson, Cleaver, and Father Knows Best families. For perspective, contrasting families briefly examined: the Bunkers (Archie and Edith) and the Connors (Rosie and Dan). Prerequisite: NOSTALGIA 101. THE GOLDEN AGE OF CORPORATIONS: Standard Oil, U.S. Steel, AT&Tk, examined in detail for how they operated before unions and anti-trust laws wrecked them. Prerequisite: GOUGING 101. INTRODUCTION TO CORPORATE WELFARE: How to incorporate in order in order to receive free government benefits. Examination of major corporations' methods of finding and using tax loopholes. Prerequisite: GOUGING 101. INTRODUCTION TO CENSORSHIP: Studies in how to impose morality on others without applying it to oneself. Great censorship cases examined for how they worked to raise the comfort level of conservatives. Prerequisite: STASIS 101. THE MAGIC OF WEAPONRY: Explorations of favorite weapons systems with emphasis on Star Wars, the B-1, and other assorted Pentagon gems. Special section on methods of marketing various weapons to third world countries. Prerequisite: GOUGING 101. INTRODUCTION TO WELFARE FRAUD INVESTIGATION. Study of proper use of stereotypes, labels, and easy answers. Includes field trips to welfare queens' homes, interviews with freeloaders, and methods of spotting people not paying their fair share. A major objection to such a curriculum, of course, is that the world as we know it teaches all these courses, and more efficiently, than any university. Still, I think it's worth a try. Since liberals have a curriculum, it's only fair that conservatives have theirs, too. Go comment!