August 8, 2000
Ignotum per Ignotius.*
*The meaning of this is unknown.
The Editor received the following letter over a week ago, in
response to the Travesty suspension notice. The subscriber, who is a
male approximately 65 years of age, has not previously submitted
material. This is not a submission, either. It's just a
letter. We have his permission to print it.
I am writing to thank you for the Daily Travesty during the time that you
produced it and to applaud you for your decision to leave it behind
and to move on. And most of all I am writing to ask you a few
questions. I can tell from having read the things that have
interested you, that you are a person who is not afraid of
college, will you still not be afraid of questions?
Quite likely, you
will say that you will not. What makes you think so?
more curious, a person with a college degree or an eight
What is it about the present system of
schooling that stifles curiosity?
Does the system reward
answers or questions?
Which is more important tentative answers or
Does the system offer tentative answers or
On which floor of the universal elevator should
I get off to find permanent answers?
What is the difference
between schooling and education?
What does college schooling
offer to you besides learning how to play the part of a student, and peer
acceptance as a non-deviate from the norm after you have your paper at
Are you afraid of the above questions?
If not here
are some more:
Who is paying for your schooling?
are only a few possible answers:
Your parents. Do they want
you to: fit in; appear normal, but iconoclastic on the
inside; appear iconoclastic, but normal on the inside;
be normal-appearing and normal on the inside; (What does it mean
to be normal? What is the norm today?) achieve more than they
did; think differently than they do; be free to make your own choice; be
fooled into thinking that you are making your own choice; set you free; continue
to control you? In the great societies of the past, at what
age did young males become independent? What is the relationship
between parent and offspring in so-called primitive cultures
after males are initiated? If your parents say that
they want you to be free and well educated, will they give you the
money that would have gone to the institution, so that you might
orchestrate your own education? Would they give you half of
the cost? What kind of education could you give yourself, if you
traveled the earth for four years seeking out those who knew the most,
taking leads from each on where to find the next and learning
from all as you go?
Borrow the money: Is there any possibility in
your mind that you could get a better education without going to
college? If there is how will you ever find out? If you go to
college and determine after the experience is over that you have been had by
the educational establishment, how will you deal with the fact that
you must work for many years to pay for your mistake?
How many people emerge from the college experience rejoicing at having
gone into debt? How might the money otherwise have been
Pay for it yourself: How can you be sure that
you are being honest with yourself that you are
getting the best
value for your money?
A few more questions:
right: Plato, Buddha, and Lao Tse, who claim that the essence of education is to
eliminate the errors that one has already acquired, or the current educational
establishment, which claims that education is a process of acquiring
How does a person who has spent his entire life being
oriented by a consumption-driven culture recognize education as something
that he is being asked to consume? How does one opt out from the
Your zine gave me some hints that you did not
completely approve of corporate America and the consciousness that it
fosters. The educational establishment is many times larger than
the biggest multi-national corporations. It is by far
the largest industry in the world. Why do you think
that the qualities of multi-national corporations that repel you are
absent from colleges and universities?
Why am I going to
the trouble of writing this to a person that I have never
Tentative answer: Three generations ago, when I started
out in this lifetime, the world was filled with independent optimistic
souls, who readily took responsibility for their own thoughts,
words and deeds. Today, after the great boom in university
schooling (90% of all PhDs who ever lived are alive today), the world
is in far worst shape than it was when I was born, the human race is in
jeopardy of extinction, it is always the other fellow's fault and
the underlying theme of almost every conversation is "ain't it awful."
I was seriously harmed by the schooling that I received
at several universities and it has taken me many years to recover
my ability to think. When I see a spark of hope in a young
person, I blow some truth at him with the hope that he might catch
the flame of self-realization.
Thanks again for the Daily
Travesty and my the gods guide you in whatever you do.