Supporting Journalists: Please do NOT learn to code!

Those of us already working in the computer field already have too much competition from 3rd world low wage H1B Visa guys, driving down wages and making calls to tech support an exercise in foreign language skills. Last thing we need is more folks flooding in. It really would be much better if you just went back to college (I’m sure you can get another loan…) and studied more Victimology Studies of some kind or other. Surely there is some group that has not yet been “studied” enough as victims. Maybe males? Or white people? (Then again, you would need to find a way to blame White Men for making Whites and Men victims… might need some creativity…)

I’d not seen the “meme” about “Learn To Code”, but it seems to be circulating in circles where I do not. The point of it seems to be that for a few years Journalists have been telling laid off White Men to “learn to code” to find a niche in the new automation economy. Now that journalists are getting laid off, they don’t want to hear the same advice. Well, OK: Don’t Learn To Code, go on welfare instead. Please.

As a sidebar to this:

I’d not be posting these videos but for the fact that one of them covers the “why they are being laid off all at the same time”. Seems there was some Slush Fund set up under the Obama years, to funnel $Millions to left wing journalist fellow travelers. That law ran out. With the need to depend on actual sales of their tripe, and with the pubic staying away in droves, no money means no job. Well “Boo Hoo”. Live by the subsidy, die by the subsidy.

I’d had no idea about that law. It is in the second video as a short snip near the 9 mnute mark after a few too many F-bombs…

This first one gives a good sense of the whole “what’s going on”:

Then the rant with the information about legal money laundering for Left Wing Causes:

My Opinion

I hate it when anyone loses their job. One of my kids is employed as a writer, so I’m a supporter of the whole idea of journalists and writers.

HOWEVER:

Dear Journalists,

Nobody owes you a living. Depending on a government subsidy while ‘Talking Dirt’ about the very people who pay the taxes to do that funding is not a long term Bright Idea. Constantly being a PITA sour grapes petty whiner who is “triggered” by anything and everything while nagging the rest of us to be more like you is NOT the way to gain customers.

I freely admit that for the better part of 50 years I was a hard core News Junky. As recently as a decade ago I took 3 newspapers. Up to a year ago I watched at least 4 news shows per day. Your incessant Left Wing BIAS and flat out Propaganda has driven me away. Where I used to watch a few hours of CNN per day, I now watch exactly zero. Where, for years, I read every single Scientific American issue to come out, cover to cover: once it went off the deep end into Social Advocacy (and in particular the Global Warming narrative BS), I now read zero (and the last one was a decade or so ago). Where I used to watch both Cronkite and Huntley & Brinkley every single night (i.e. domestic network news) I’ve now dropped to not even launching ABC, NBC, or CBS news on my Roku (why bother? There’s nothing new or news in it; just “Trump Bad, Hate Trump” and various DNC Talking Points.) News is about novelty and when nothing is new and novel, it ain’t news no more…

It is YOUR choice of being incredibly Alt-Left that’s caused your state of affairs, with Huffpo. Buzzfeed, NYT, CNN et. al. looking like the incredible shrinking audience follies. Get out of your fishbowl of fellow travelers from the far left and meet some Real Americans. Go get a job paving roads or driving a farm tractor. Then tell me your perspective has not changed. We, the folks who live outside the NYC / LA Gliterati Circles, are NOT Alt-Left Wingnuts.

We are 49% Men, and majority White. Constantly insulting Whites and Men is not good for your business. Not least because most of it is lies and scapegoating perfectly nice and honorable folks – my ancestral Amish were fleeing religious persecution, my ancestral Irish had to face signs saying “No Irish Need Apply” for jobs in your dear New York City. Telling ME I am burdened with “White Privilege” is worse than a bad joke. Look up the history of Irish “indentured servants”. Look up the living conditions of generations of White Male farmers, miners, ditch diggers, long haul truck drivers, etc. etc. Simply put: You are wrong at the top of your voice.

So it is of zero surprise to anyone (except maybe you) that your jobs are evaporating as you drive your audience (and potential customers) away in droves.

My suggestion? Do NOT learn to code. Go get a part time job as an Uber Driver while attending the local community college studying something like welding or plumbing. You will eventually make good money at it… and you will learn why we laugh at you calling us who have done that kind of job “privileged”. ( I have done my own plumbing for years, can roof a house – and have, paint a house – and have, had welding in High School and can overhaul a car engine – and have. I’m not suggesting you do anything I have not done myself.)

Who knows, after a decade clawing your way up to the lower rung of Middle Class, you might actually have a decent centrist perspective on our ‘privilege’. That being that the only privilege we have is the privilege to work hard for a living and compete in an open marketplace for work. No skills in demand means no eating; for us and our families. That’s the extent of our “privilege”.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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19 Responses to Supporting Journalists: Please do NOT learn to code!

  1. H.R. says:

    Since forever, aspiring actors would wait tables or pump gas or wash cars all while telling everyone, “I’m not really a waiter. I’m an actor between roles.”

    I suppose journalists will do the same, except with the advent of the internet, anyone can put their writings “out there.” They will soon find their true worth as a journalist by the number of hits their work receives and the dollars they garner from monetizing their work. The market will tell a bunch of these journalists that they really are waiters.

  2. H.R. says:

    E.M., I wouldn’t mind a bit if you cared to comment on the low barriers to entry in journalism.

    I know at my university, the journalism program was the butt of many jokes, and deservedly so. It was the major you took when you couldn’t hack it in any other major and your parents insisted that you get a degree.

    A high school sweetie of mine majored in journalism at the local giagundous land grant university. In her senior year, she was editor of the school newspaper. In a large school with a large journalism program, that was no mean feat. She was at the top in that program.

    Shortly after she graduated with her Journalism degree, she stopped by our place to say howdy. She had 100 or so letters she was mailing to prospective employers. I read the resume she was enclosing and it was impressive! I believe the stack of letters was the 3rd or 4th batch she was sending out (can’t recall all these years later).

    Anyhow, I ran into her again at a 10-year H.S. reunion. It turns out her only job as a journalist was for a couple of years with a local weekly paper. That was it.

    Very pretty. Very smart. It just occurred to me that she was also very staid, and would not be one to sleep her way into a journalism job. Perhaps that was the problem. I don’t know if that’s the ticket to a career in journalism or not, though.

  3. corsair red says:

    Thank you, E.M. Excellent letter.

  4. John F. Hultquist says:

    Beyond journalists:
    The WSJ just ran a story about the student debt of people over 60. Link

    There a many other articles about the student debt issue.
    Many interview those that have gotten degrees in fields with few jobs, and low paying jobs.
    This seems to be a big deal in the UsofA compared to other modern countries, if my sense of it is correct.

  5. Gary says:

    The last actual journalist I can recall is Tim Russert. He used to back up his analysis with real evidence — video, written statements, etc. What we have now are poorly educated “media workers” trapped in a fading industry. I doubt they can learn to code; that’s why they majored in journalism.

  6. sabretoothed says:

    The only news services that you can actually read are Gateway Pundit and Breitbert.

    Everything else is total bs lol

  7. jim2 says:

    The tech companies are fond of the PC position that anyone can code. But there aren’t many people who have the perseverance and intelligence to hack their way through various trails of tears time after time. There are plenty of people who can write crappy code, though.

  8. Graeme No.3 says:

    H.R.
    The local Universities are desperate for students to support their vast overhead of administrators, even with a flood of money from governments.
    Nevertheless the lowest qualifications required (by some margin) are for Climate Studies. Some surprise in the local media, but I wonder if many prospective students are starting to think about the real future.

  9. John Robertson says:

    Good post E.M.
    However “Learn to Code ” is revenge. Just as the Doxing of that whiney editor was.
    They can sure dish it out, but cry a lot when they get a return.Delicious liberal tears.
    First most of these Presstitutes could not learn to programme if they tried.
    Also they will not try, even though this is the same advice they threw in the face of the American Workers getting Globalized.
    Pretty amazing how little press the Obama subsidy got,so the press was paid to have the brutal bias they have been demonstrating? With taxpayer money no less.
    Interesting you reveal this now,as here in Canada the bribe is blatant and even got reported,as a good thing of course, $600 million for the failing media,if they meet the approval of a “select government body”, so that is where the Northern Demonrats got the idea from,straight out of the Zero’s playbook.
    Now I may be a cynic and just plain nasty,but many of the comments on these complainers twitter accounts are laugh out loud funny.
    I have no sympathy with the plight of these so called journalists,there is a world of untold stories out here,the corruption of our ineffectual elites is staggering,conflict of interest is rampant and chaos is creeping in to fill the void a lawless society creates.
    An example,the French protests go on,getting very serious..North American media??
    nothing to see here,move along,as the frightened elites of France get more violent toward their citizens.
    Up here,Canada,Your President signs an executive order 3 days ago ,American parts and contractors in government funded projects,America first.Canadian government funded media has not reported this yet.Because the fools in government here will look more stupid than they already do,especially after their claims of victory over President Trump on trade.
    A real journalist and news media would report these things,rather than telling us their opinion.
    Sorry long rant,must be the wine, but the decline of the news media is self inflicted and glorious to watch.
    Remember the CRU emails?
    The Cult of Calamitous Climate media did everything they could to Not Report,the content of those emails.
    Lying by omission seems to be the skill set learned in Journalism School.
    Selling the narrative is all, or so it seems.
    Based on their skills as reporters,”Do you want fries with that” is going to be a hard learning curve.

  10. E.M.Smith says:

    @John Robertson:

    Glad you liked it. I wonder how many of them advocated for the $15 minimum wage? It is pushing automated order stations forward… I.e. someone from India on an H1b writing:
    println (“You want fries with that?”);
    I would say that means they won’t get to say it so broom pushing is in their future, but Roomba….

    @Corsair Red:

    Thanks, glad you liked it. Just spoken from the truth I’ve lived.

    @Ossqss:

    Yes, related. Some of the social media places have now defined “learn to code” as “hate speech” instead of career advice… though in reality it is what I would give anyone looking for a career restart as career advice.. While I do believe anyone can learn to code few can do it well.

    @H.R. & Graeme No.3:

    In the seventies, teachers were underpaid and colleges often poor. Then the push to government grants and big student loans happened. Buildings sprang up like mushrooms on a warm wet day and every idiot and fool ran off to get a degree and thus easy prosperity.

    The result has been to make the B.A or B.S. roughly mean you have a good high school education but with 20 years of debt payments, while colleges granted ever larger salaries. Now, Gen.Z is seeing that and “going their own way”. Colleges are going to hit the wall (so will lobby for more subsidy and wide open student visas).

    FWIW , I made sure my kids graduated with zero debt. More than once I have been thanked for that. The Son, especially, commented about his peers and their debt struggles.

    So instead of a few bright folks getting advanced skills, schools became a money laundry where anyone could go to collect a debt degree. That meant the schools needed some “easy majors” and suddenly a dozen Victimology Studies programs emerged. Have gripe, get degree; just sign your loan application here… Some of those folks saw Journalism as the way to influence society and went that way. Turning what had been a place where gritty reporters doggededly researched politicians, crawled in trenches with soldiers, and visited the local morgue to report who died; into an SJW Playground.

    That worked until the old guard died off. Now The Public are staying away in droves, papers folding right and left, jobs evaporating. If they can drive me away, they lost Joe The Plumber long ago. Then Internet News was the death knell. Why read SJW Rant crap when a blogger has done real digging and found that Southern Poverty Law was just sued for defamation by 3 different folks for black listing them? (Google, Twitter, Faceplant etc. use SPLC as their external expert..,). Didn’t see that in The News… Gee, novel information that matters…. not SJW Talking Points. It really is that simple a formula.

  11. H.R. says:

    E.M.: “FWIW , I made sure my kids graduated with zero debt. More than once I have been thanked for that. The Son, especially, commented about his peers and their debt struggles.”

    Same with my son. I’ve mentioned before that Mrs. H.R. went out and bought a Lexus after he graduated. The payments were a good bit less than his tuition. 😲 He still thanks us from time to time when his peers, still paying or just finishing up their loans, bring up the topic and it reminds him that he had a great financial head start without the loan burden.
    .
    .
    Oh! something else about this “You must have a college degree” nonsense. Part of the expectations of having one is that immediately upon graduation, you will land a job behind a desk where you can do email, facebook, gossip with coworkers in the break room, and in the remaining work hours, “make a difference.”

    I disabused my son of that notion. In his field (graphic design), you need a portfolio to move up. So he started doing the gruntwork for experienced designers at low pay. After two years, someone noticed his work was consistently good and he moved up to more interesting projects at better pay. After about 5-6 more years, his portfolio was really solid and he moved up to a really good senior position where he is nicely paid and has the tougher, more interesting assignments. About the last step in his career will be a Director’s position, which he might hit at about age 45 or 50.

    I’m just trying to point out the contrast between expectations drilled into skulls full of mush versus the normal reality most of us faced.

  12. Bob Koss says:

    If you coders would allow more flexibility when interpreting boolean operators I’m sure journalists would find such a job more to their liking.

  13. philjourdan says:

    There is a reason they became Urinalists. They lacked both the mental capacity and the physical dexterity to do anything else.

  14. philjourdan says:

    Bob Koss wins the zinger of the year award!!! :-)

  15. Larry Geiger says:

    Chief mentions laid off “white men”. Actually, I believe that the original LTC was to some laid off coal miners in West Virginia. It is most certainly true that the smart alec “journalist” was being “wry” or in more modern terms “snarky” as it would be obvious to the most casual liberal observer that laid off coal miners can’t code.

    However, when the shoe is on the other foot it’s not wry but an attack of immense proportions worthy of twitter and facebook bans. To all reasonable people, such as those here, the entire thing is hilarious and worthy of investment in popcorn.

  16. Pouncer says:

    To whatever extent the theory of general intelligence is valid, AND to whatever extent it’s true that average journalists as a class are of about average intelligence, AND to the extent it’s true that journalists as a class tend to be have more innate talent with “words” than “numbers”, THEN it tends to be, to some extent, true that journalists have below-average ability to develop skills with math, logic, and quantity.

  17. E.M.Smith says:

    What I observed in school was that those with real ability in math, logic, and quantity went into fields like Engineering, Physics, Chemistry… Those with real ability with words tended to go into Linguistics, English, or sometimes various other languages. ( I did both… took a bunch of Engineering classes and took Linguistics + a few languages; so I got to see the various populations up close.) Biology tended to attract some of each, and the more math able ones were usually on the Pre-Med or Pre-Vet paths.

    Those folks who couldn’t cut it in any of those, and often those with a Political Agenda, went into the “arts” and “journalism”. (I took a dramatic arts class and some related stuff as electives, so got to see them close up too). Sociology was 100% a Left Wingnut Indoctrination Camp ( I made the mistake of thinking it would be like Cultural Anthropology… wish I’d never set foot in the class now.)

    It was my experience that those in the “arts” area were particularly deficient in logic and reasoning skills. They did have a high tendency to emotional behaviour and navel gazing…. This may not be a fault, as it does lead to better art works sometimes. The kind of folks who are limited to logical and unemotive things tend to make crappy story lines and flat acting performances… “Willful suspension of disbelief” is very easy if you are not encumbered by an understanding of the Real World…

    These are gross generalizations from my personal experience and there WILL be exceptions. Just like in my one Russian Class there seemed to be a LOT of folks who already knew the alphabet and “looked Slavic” so I suspect they were either foreign students or their parents were immigrants. Didn’t mean I wasn’t in the class ;-) So exceptions do happen. But the trend was still there.

    Oh, a sidebar on “selective pressure”: As a pre-med student, we were required to take Chemistry 1A, 1B, and 1C. This was a “separator class” to convince the 10 Thousand or so pre-med students that would eventually be applying for the few hundred Med School slots to change their mind early. In 1 A we had about 400 to 450 students in the auditorium for my section. There were about a dozen sections. By Chem 1D we had 250 students in the only section. All those who didn’t “make the cut” had to go to some other career path. Similarly, the Engineering Calculus I took sent a fair number of folks to “other majors”. It was widely discussed in the dorms… what to take up as a way to graduate with some degree… (In my case I went to work in the hospital and discovered I really didn’t ever want to work in a hospital for the rest of my life… Also got to see the Residents as M.D.s still being treated to a brutal life. Not for me, so I decided on a more tech heavy money oriented path… Econ with computers…)

    Many of the “least gifted” would migrate to those majors that did not require technical “heavy lifting”. Things where you got an A just for “feeling” and writing about it without too many spelling and language errors… Just sayin’… (The ones who had trouble with spelling and language tended to the “visual arts”… I met several in my “making movies” class… Econ let me take a lot of electives, which suited my eclectic interests. Oddly, I found Economics an “easy A” while many in the classes struggled or flunked out. I think it was the technical / engineering discipline that made their simple graphs trivial to understand and make…)

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