In case you missed it | Doing the J school shuffle


Doing the J school shuffle

It was pretty amusing to watch (insert one of CU’s long administrator titles here) Jeff Cox, former CU Regent Jim Martin and Denver Post editorial writer Alicia Caldwell jostling for position regarding CU’s discontinuance of its journalism school during the April 8 broadcast of “A Colorado State of Mind” on Rocky Mountain PBS.

With a straight face, Cox insisted that the “discontinuance” is really an effort to strengthen journalism education at CU, with something encouragingly called “Journalism Plus.” And then there was Martin, in his usual rambling, broken sentences, suggesting that discontinuance is a troubling sign, since good journalism usually results in good government.

Hey, we love you, Jim, you were often the voice of reason while on the board, you’re just not the best public speaker.

Still, he made his point, and it’s a point well taken. CU officials can crow all they want about this “discontinuance” being an unfortunate term, about this not being a budget-cutting exercise, about faculty retaining their positions, about dragging the J school into the 21st century. The real proof, unfortunately, won’t come for several years, when we look at how things have changed in the program in terms of faculty numbers, budget, course offerings and number of students.

You see, something like this can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. No matter what is decided now, the word is out that CU is “discontinuing” its journalism school because it’s not “first-rate,” to quote the chancellor himself. Talk about throwing one of your schools under the bus.

Do we really think that this type of national news is not going to hurt student recruitment efforts? How many students are going to want to attend now that such “messaging,” to borrow a term from the Dark Side, is out there?

This decision was a done deal when the “process” was announced last August.

Hopefully the line that Cox and other CU honchos are spouting about their professed dedication to continuing and improving journalism education at CU is not just hot air.

Martin would know. He sniffed this kind of thing out many times in his 12 years as a regent.

Freedom? No thanks

Those nice well-heeled fellows at JPMorgan Chase have something wonderful to offer you: freedom.

It’s good to see them step up with something for the American consumer. After all, it’s the average American taxpayer who funded their $25 billion bailout. They certainly owe us something.

And what could be more important — or more American — than freedom?

But their concept of freedom is plastic and comes with 5 percent cash back and a 0 percent APR for six months.

Yes, the freedom they are offering you is a credit card — the “Freedom Card.”

What kind of freedom comes with a credit card? Certainly, there’s the freedom to spend. And with that comes the freedom to pay. Through the nose.

Let’s say you grab this freedom and buy new furniture for your living room totaling about $4,800. And let’s pretend you’re a person with an average credit rating who ends up paying 23 percent interest when those first six months pass. You will spend 19 years and a total of $12,800 paying off that $4,800 purchase.

Freedom? Try indentured servitude. It’s popular to whine about Congress spending our children’s future, but we are spending our children’s future.

Freedom isn’t about spending. It’s not about furniture and flat-screen TVs.

They have that shit in China. Freedom is about being able to make important choices unencumbered by debt and other harmful, unnecessary obligations.

No thanks, Chase. Your brand of freedom is too much like slavery.