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America's Cult of Ignorance
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On the other hand



Joined: 19 Apr 2003
Location: I walk along the avenue

PostPosted: Sat Jun 28, 2014 2:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Privateer wrote:
Who among the teachers here can honestly say they have not been impressed by the level of ignorance shown by their Korean students?


With the caveat that there is ignorance everywhere in the world, yes, I will say that my experience in Korea does not back up the blogger's claims about the superiority of "Asian" education.

For as long as I can remember, westerners have been using Japan and/or East Asia generally as a counterpoint to all the things that are supposedly wrong in their own countries. Usually the people doing this have only the skethiest, pop media-derived idea of what things are actually like here.

I recall a cartoon from the 80s, when video arcades in malls were all the rage, and computers were starting to enter the public consciousness as an everyday item. The cartoon was headlined "Electronic Education".

The first panel said "In Russia..." and showed a bunch of students in a classroom, listening to a stern looking prof deliver a lecture in front of a blackboard filled with complex mathematical formulae.

The second panel said "In Japan..." and showed a similar scene, in Japan.

The third said "In America...", and showed a bunch of kids at a video arcade.

The message, of course, was that kids in East Asia don't waste all their time playing electronic games. I really wish the cartoonist could come to Korea and check out a PC bang on a Saturday afternoon.
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
With the caveat that there is ignorance everywhere in the world, yes, I will say that my experience in Korea does not back up the blogger's claims about the superiority of "Asian" education.

For as long as I can remember, westerners have been using Japan and/or East Asia generally as a counterpoint to all the things that are supposedly wrong in their own countries. Usually the people doing this have only the skethiest, pop media-derived idea of what things are actually like here.

I recall a cartoon from the 80s, when video arcades in malls were all the rage, and computers were starting to enter the public consciousness as an everyday item. The cartoon was headlined "Electronic Education".

The first panel said "In Russia..." and showed a bunch of students in a classroom, listening to a stern looking prof deliver a lecture in front of a blackboard filled with complex mathematical formulae.

The second panel said "In Japan..." and showed a similar scene, in Japan.

The third said "In America...", and showed a bunch of kids at a video arcade.

The message, of course, was that kids in East Asia don't waste all their time playing electronic games. I really wish the cartoonist could come to Korea and check out a PC bang on a Saturday afternoon.


As an American, it does not give me joy to say this...but...having been back in the U.S. for some years after my ventures form abroad and serving in the military....I fell, that Americans are VERY ignorant, to what is happening before their (our) very own eyes.

So...with time spent with years of reflection, I don't condemn Korean students, all that much anymore, in regards to ignorance. Americans are factually aware of important matters as Koreans think K-pop has overtaken the world.

As I said, it does not bring me joy to speak present a negative persona towards my fellow countrymen (and women) but I stand by what I said. In fact, I'll break it down...

...Americans have their heads far up their &&^, they can taste what they had for dinner three days ago....as a whole.

In which case, breaks my heart because I signed up to fight for my Republic, only to watch it fall.

However...I don't speak about this amongst Koreans. In fact, I resent that U.S. taxpayer money flows into this country, especially regarding the warning the U.S. embassy provides on teaching English in Korea.

However, this stance applies to many other countries in which U.S. tax payer money is sent off to....
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Sector7G



Joined: 24 May 2008

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

trueblue wrote:

However...I don't speak about this amongst Koreans. In fact, I resent that U.S. taxpayer money flows into this country, especially regarding the warning the U.S. embassy provides on teaching English in Korea.

However, this stance applies to many other countries in which U.S. tax payer money is sent off to....
Sorry, not trying to be argumentative, but I don't follow. What warning are you talking about? Did I miss something?
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No worries....I understand your point.

Allow me to back track and diffuse what I said, a bit.

I would consider it a subtle warning...or..and advisement...in either case, I admit, can transcend beyond Korea, in this field of work.

However, for a country that literally depends on foreign assistance to keep their way of life...I still resent U.S. tax payer money being sent to this country. Then again, I would not have a job, here.

http://seoul.usembassy.gov/acs_teaching.html
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No worries....I understand your point.

Allow me to back track and diffuse what I said, a bit.

I would consider it a subtle warning...or..and advisement...in either case, I admit, can transcend beyond Korea, in this field of work.

However, for a country that literally depends on foreign assistance to keep their way of life...I still resent U.S. tax payer money being sent to this country. Then again, I would not have a job, here.

http://seoul.usembassy.gov/acs_teaching.html


I believe this is what it USED to say....

Here is an excerpt from the U.S. Embassy’s Official Warning:

"Due to the growing number and seriousness of problems experienced
by American citizens teaching English in Korea, we counsel against
taking such employment, even at reputable colleges or universities,
except upon receipt of a favorable written referral from a current
American citizen employee. We receive several complaints daily
from Americans who came to Korea to teach English.

Despite contracts promising good salaries, furnished apartments
and other amenities, many teachers find they actually receive
much less than they were promised; some do not even receive
benefits required by Korean law, such as health insurance and
severance pay. Teachers' complaints range from simple contract
violations through non-payment of salary for months at a time,
to dramatic incidents of severe sexual harassment, intimidation,
threats of arrest/deportation, and physical assault."
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Steelrails



Joined: 12 Mar 2009
Location: Earth, Solar System

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Embassy alerts are like warnings on medicine. Some are to be taken very seriously and often result in severe side effects. Others are essentially, don't sue me in case a .0001% chance event happens. Others are basically, if you're an idiot, others are "this product is not a miracle drug, do not slam 20 of them in a day and not expect severe side effects and for it to grant you paradise".
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Embassy alerts are like warnings on medicine. Some are to be taken very seriously and often result in severe side effects. Others are essentially, don't sue me in case a .0001% chance event happens. Others are basically, if you're an idiot, others are "this product is not a miracle drug, do not slam 20 of them in a day and not expect severe side effects and for it to grant you paradise



LOL..good one, seriously.


Though, I still do not think U.S. taxpayer money should be spent on a country that shows a lot of resentment towards foreigners. I would be the first to clap (and to leave) if the U.S. said..."You know what, South Korea...it's time we left you to handle this on your own"...but then, how would that make the U.S. look?

Double edged sword...in which I use Korea, as they use others.
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Sector7G



Joined: 24 May 2008

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

trueblue wrote:


Though, I still do not think U.S. taxpayer money should be spent on a country that shows a lot of resentment towards foreigners.
Yeah, I wonder why they do. Could it be that "South Korea is one of the United States’ most important strategic and economic partners in Asia, and for the past five years relations between the two countries (known officially as the Republic of Korea, or ROK) have been arguably at their best state in decades."?
http://fas.org/sgp/crs/row/R41481.pdf
Ok, that's just "official" government relations. As for resentment on a day to day basis, I don't know, maybe I was living in a bubble, but in three years there I really did not experience any. When I read about it on Dave's I have to scratch my head and wonder why my experience was so different.
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On the other hand



Joined: 19 Apr 2003
Location: I walk along the avenue

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sector7G wrote:
trueblue wrote:


Though, I still do not think U.S. taxpayer money should be spent on a country that shows a lot of resentment towards foreigners.
Yeah, I wonder why they do. Could it be that "South Korea is one of the United States’ most important strategic and economic partners in Asia, and for the past five years relations between the two countries (known officially as the Republic of Korea, or ROK) have been arguably at their best state in decades."?


Heh. Yep, as long as I've been reading Dave's, there's been the perennial revenge fantasy of disgruntled Americans(and their sympathizers)...

"Oh boy, these Koreans think they can scream insults at Amercians and get away with it, huh? Huh? Well, just you wait, the troops are gonna be pulled out any day now, and then we'll hear some real whining from these ungrategful jerkoids. ANY DAY NOW...!!"

And of course, that day never comes.
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On the other hand



Joined: 19 Apr 2003
Location: I walk along the avenue

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
"Due to the growing number and seriousness of problems experienced by American citizens teaching English in Korea, we counsel against taking such employment, even at reputable colleges or universities, except upon receipt of a favorable written referral from a current American citizen employee.


They should have added at the very end "...who is not writing the referral simply in exchange for getting his severance pay."
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 3:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Yeah, I wonder why they do. Could it be that "South Korea is one of the United States’ most important strategic and economic partners in Asia, and for the past five years relations between the two countries (known officially as the Republic of Korea, or ROK) have been arguably at their best state in decades."



Are you a member of the government, or a contractor?

There is no revenge agenda, on my part. I just do not feel the tax money from citizens in my country, should be coming here, as it is the same with other nations.

Yes, I do resent it. But, at the same time, as I pointed out, I would not have a job. Thus, again...I will use Korea as Korea uses everyone else...financially. Which means, I have very little interest in its culture, food or scenery. Nor do I have much interest in their women. Upon my discharge from the military, that signified I was free and clear to do what I wish and I decided to take a break from graduate school.

Nothing more...it is all a financial interest. Though, I have no fear in telling a cheeky boss the same thing, nor do I let fear hold me down from simply leaving a bad situation. Life is too short for that nonsense.
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atwood



Joined: 26 Dec 2009

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The U.S. Embassy policy regarding teaching in SK is more than a decade old and was a response to the many, many complaints they received from teachers who, after having problems with their employers, mainly hagwons, went to the embassy for help.

This policy began before the Internet, when it was much more difficult to research potential future employers.

Again, it seems those putting the most energy into painting Americans as ignorant are just as, if not more so, ignorant.
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Sector7G



Joined: 24 May 2008

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

trueblue wrote:


Are you a member of the government, or a contractor?

Yes, I do resent it. But, at the same time, as I pointed out, I would not have a job. Thus, again...I will use Korea as Korea uses everyone else...financially. Which means, I have very little interest in its culture, food or scenery. Nor do I have much interest in their women. Upon my discharge from the military, that signified I was free and clear to do what I wish and I decided to take a break from graduate school.

Nothing more...it is all a financial interest.
I am neither a member of the government nor a contractor, but I thought you were talking about Korean resentment of the US, not the other way around. I was just saying that I know of no official government resentment, and I never experienced any personal resentment - with the exception of a contract dispute which was resolved in my favor.

And I don't want this to sound like the typical, "If you hate it so bad here, why don't you leave?" question, but if you are on break from grad school, why did you choose some place that you have such little interest in? "Life is too short."
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trueblue



Joined: 15 Jun 2014
Location: In between the lines

PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 10:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
"If you hate it so bad here, why don't you leave?"



That has no application, but I understand what you are saying.

I am content, for the most part But, as an American, I do resent that the tax dollars of my country are sent here. We should be taking care of own, first and foremost.

I simply don't have an interest in Korean's themselves. I don't care about their culture (though I go with the flow, with). Their food is not appealing (but I make do). Korean women are not anywhere close to my type...it is a cultural thing.

No hate...just numb, I guess. As I said, am here only for the money and life IS too short to worry about being trapped in a potentially bad situation, such as many are/get into in Korea.

That's all.
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Leon



Joined: 31 May 2010

PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 2:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

trueblue wrote:
Quote:
"If you hate it so bad here, why don't you leave?"



That has no application, but I understand what you are saying.

I am content, for the most part But, as an American, I do resent that the tax dollars of my country are sent here. We should be taking care of own, first and foremost.

I simply don't have an interest in Korean's themselves. I don't care about their culture (though I go with the flow, with). Their food is not appealing (but I make do). Korean women are not anywhere close to my type...it is a cultural thing.

No hate...just numb, I guess. As I said, am here only for the money and life IS too short to worry about being trapped in a potentially bad situation, such as many are/get into in Korea.

That's all.


Unless you are an isolationist who thinks America should have no foreign policy, or shouldn't be in the Pacific, than America is getting a good bargain in Korea. It's an important neighborhood to have a presence in.
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