Recently, the media has become fascinated with the educational backgrounds of prospective Presidential Candidates. First came the in-depth by The Washington Post probing the circumstances behind Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s career at Marquette, which seemed to miss the original point of it’s premise by not discovering anything that Walker hasn’t said before about his reason to leave during his Senior Year. From Walker’s 2013 State of the State Address:
Nearly a quarter of all adults in this state have some college credit without a degree. For many, time and money are the barriers to finishing that degree. I can relate. During my senior year at Marquette University, I was offered a full-time job at the American Red Cross. I thought I would squeeze in a course here or there and finish things off in a year or two, but then Tonette and I got married. Then we had Matt. And then came Alex. Next thing you know, you’re putting all your extra time and money into your kids.
While the tone of the original Washington Post piece seemed to be accurate if only just a tad bit condescending, others took the idea to the next level including former DNC Chairman Howard Dean calling Walker “unknowledgeable” and Eric Boehlert of Media Matters for America said Walker’s dropping out showed “lack of initiative”.
Walker, for his part, was able to turn the negativity into landing a points-scoring jab at President Obama while being interviewed by Megyn Kelly on Fox News:
“We’ve had an Ivy-trained lawyer in the White House for six years who’s pretty good at reading off the teleprompter, but has done a pretty lousy job leading this country. I’d rather have a fighter who’s proven he can take on the big government special interests and win. We have people who helped found Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, plenty of other successful businesses and enterprises across this country who did the exact same sort of thing I did.”
Further illustrating how The Left has drafted College Education into being a sort of cudgel with which to bludgeon their competitors, Bloomberg was on the front line of trying to take a statement made by Senator Rand Paul about his training in Biology out of context and instead assert that Paul had claimed to have an undergraduate degree in Biology–and that the apparent slip of the tongue was very important. The Washington Post’s Fact Checker column was not giving Paul-who has a Medical Degree from Duke University School of Medicine-the benefit of the doubt, concluding, “Paul studied biology (and English) at Baylor, but he didn’t earn a degree. There’s no excuse for resume-inflation, even when it’s jocular.”
As it turns out only about 29% of the US population age 25 or older have a college degree, and as University of Tennessee law professor Glenn Harlan Reynolds stated in a recent USA Today Op-Ed piece, “A college degree isn’t essential to getting ahead…a college degree isn’t the be-all and end-all, and that accomplishments and practical skills are, in the end, more important than credentials.”
[Washington Post] [Wi.gov] [Fox News] [Bloomberg] [USA Today] [ABC News]