OT - Basic Skills in Today's World

Page 7 of 13  

wrote:

[snip]
How did your dissertation advisor feel about such obvious proofing errors? What was your dissertation for, and when and where was it accepted? Published? Just curious.
Jeff
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On Sun, 6 Aug 2006 21:09:01 -0500, "Jeff McCann"

==============I am not sure how obvious an "s" on Gibbon is. I hope this did not interrupt the flow too badly when you were reading the section.
Dissertation was for EdD Oklahoma State University, 1999 (Stillwater, Oklahoma) Occupational and Adult Education
I was one of the last two graduates from that department/discipline. The other was a very good friend from Brazil and we still email about vocational/technical education in our countries.
Several problems.
I used endnotes and these don't come over [well] when doing a cut-n-paste to "text only" newsgroup postings.
I have made three moves since graduation and when I finely got around to converting the formatted and proofed MS doc file [done by some very talented dissertation typists] into pdf format for posting on my web site after I retired and had time, I discovered that several parts of the final file were unreadable, so had to use my unformatted block left working files. The appendix was one of those sections.
Unka George (George McDuffee)
...and at the end of the fight is a tombstone white with the name of the late deceased, and the epitaph drear: A Fool lies here, who tried to hustle the East.
Rudyard Kipling The Naulahka, ch. 5, heading (1892).
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wrote:

errors?
Congratulations on your achievement.
Jeff

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On Sun, 06 Aug 2006 21:03:44 -0500, F. George McDuffee

<<< Snip >>>
Thers is also a good deal of lasting value in The Republic of Plato, Book VIII, 562a-569c, where he deals with the methods by which a democracy devolves into tyrannical rule. There is little doubt that any number of people will yell that Plato lived too long ago for his work to be relevant to our society, but the preceeding section dealing with the transistion from oligarchy to democracy is a fine description of the change from colonial times to our current society, and grants the argument cited above more than a little credibility when viewed through that lens.
The overall argument of this thread seems to be focused on some type of TSHTF (I like that acronym, btw) event or events that would toss us back into the stone age- but that is not necessarily the most likely or most dangerous situation that our society could face. I agree with the nub of the argument that men need to remember the means and methods by which we have built our modern world, but to my mind it is more important that those things be remembered so that we do not end up with a thousand years of darkness similar to Europe following the fall of the Roman empire. Rome had a high standard of living as well, and had the people at large retained the knowledge used to build that emipre, they could very well have lived in comfort rather than being cowed by the church and left to cower in hovels because they had spent too much time watching the reality TV of gladitorial combat and overspecializing.
Yeah, I know- some other fella called me a nutjob over this not too long ago on this list, but it's happened before, it'll happen again. Nothing much new under the sun, after all.
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who
A lot of it is simply due to the large population. There are way more people now, so there's going to be a higher number of younger people who don't know a wrench from a socket, making the problem seem epidemic. But the actual percentage of younger people today with basic skills probably is not too much lower than previous eras of young people. Just higher numners now, due to the increased population. Statistics/mathematics 101. I am 33 and all of my friends and I grew up helping our dads put additions onto the house, wrench on the family wagon, etc.. There were girls in our shop and wood classes. Probably 30% were girls. Plus, I took sewing!
An early 20's female friend of mine called me recently, frustrated. She couldn't get her bed apart. She was moving. I went over there. She was literally beating, with a hammer, the nuts and bolts holding the bed together! "These screws won't pop off!", she said. "Um, because those aren't screws. Even if they were screws, the way to get them out would be to use a screwdriver. But those are nuts and bolts." So I used a screwdriver and a 10mm wrench to remove the bolts. I tried to keep from making fun of her utter and complete lack of even the basic mechanical skills.
-
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 09:20:08 -0700, Robert Sturgeon

That is, they're all candidates for the "B Ark"... ;)
Retief
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 15:26:45 -0500, Retief <> wrote:

?
-- Robert Sturgeon Summum ius summa inuria. http://www.vistech.net/users/rsturge /
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 16:09:55 -0700, Robert Sturgeon

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
The working people and scientists put all of the marketing people, telephone sanitizers and their ilk on the "B Ark", because "a catastrophy was going to destroy the planet", and launched them all out into space... (and the remaining 2/3 of the population stayed on the planet, because no such disaster was imminent ;)
Retief
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Robert Sturgeon wrote:

One man's catastrophe is another's opportunity. Raise your kids to understand both worlds and they'll come out alright. For sure my eldest (7yo) is learning to pound nails, piano keys, and keyboards. This is why we recently moved out of town onto a small farm -- the shift is doing him good. We replaced the exhaust manifold on the little Allis Chalmers we use for mowing and he learned a fair bit about internal combustion engines. If dawned on him the other day that checking the oil in the car would be a good idea -- though the "Dad, where's the carbeurator?" question took a while to answer and I don't think he really got it.
hex -30-
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On 5 Aug 2006 20:44:41 -0700, "hex"

Too late. They're both grown. One works in a big city as the CFO of a non-profit foundation and the other is a temporarily retired (children to raise) writer/reporter/political aide who is married to a lawyer. All are successful in the symbolic economy and I have no influence over them -- at all. If TSHTF, I can only hope they can escape the chaos and start over. All I can do is provide them with a slight chance, IF they "make it out." Of course, I also hope the S never does HTF, but I have no influence over that, either.
(rest snipped)
-- Robert Sturgeon Summum ius summa inuria. http://www.vistech.net/users/rsturge /
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Too_Many_Tools wrote: > It has always concerned me when the young amoung us are not taugh basic > skills such as how to change a tire, how to use a saw, how to...well > you get the idea...there are basic skills that one needs to deal with > the world we live in. <snip>
It is impossible to work on the modern car without a lot of very specialized equipment.
Few doctors make house calls any more.
Might find it a little difficult to raise and butcher your own hogs in most places where people live these days.
Times change, people change, the skills required to live in a modern society keep changing.
Think the process is called "life".
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

Lew, I'll call BS on the "impossible to work on cars without specialized equipment"
It is in fact not only possible, but pretty easy to do. A simple set of hand tools and a Haynes or Chilton manual for your vehicle, and you or anyone else is quite capable of changing the oil, belts, or various electrical components like starters or alternators, at home or on the roadside.
Those are the stuff that make the bread and butter money for the dealers. They are also the things that the average driver should be quite able to recognize while they are starting to fail, too.
Even simple stuff like changing a flat seems to stump people these days.
Advanced diagnostics on the emissions control stuff is only a little more difficult, now that most manufacturers are using somewhat standardized on board diagnostics (OBD)in the computers. A simple code reader and reset tool can be got for way less than $100, and you can get a very nice diagnostic tool for less than the price of a set of good tires. Most OBD systems allow you to read the codes without tools, if you know how (hint: the manuals usually list the codes and tell how to get them)
Specialization is for insects!
Cheers Trevor Jones
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Trevor Jones wrote:
> It is in fact not only possible, but pretty easy to do. A simple set of > hand tools and a Haynes or Chilton manual for your vehicle, and you or > anyone else is quite capable of changing the oil, belts, or various > electrical components like starters or alternators, at home or on the > roadside.
<snip>
Totally impractical to try to work on an automobile today.
If you live in an urban area, many places do not permit working on a car, especially outside, even on your own property, much less a rental unit.
Want to change your oil?
6 qts of oil, an air and oil filter costs as much or more than paying for that same service down at the corner gas station, in this area at least, never mind the used oil disposal process and cost.
Sort of makes changing your own oil a non productive process.
Want to change the coolant every couple of years?
Again you face a toxic waste disposal problem which does not include being able to pour used coolant into the sewer.
The plugs on my vehicle are good for 100,000 miles and require special tools to change. Think I'll pass on that one.
Most people don't keep a vehicle 100,000 miles like I do so they don't even have to think about changing plugs and wires.
Matter of fact, most of today's vehicles have a pretty good track record for the first 75,000 miles.
Trying to do your own auto repairs today is a lose-lose proposition, IMHO.
Now you want to talk about diesel engine maintenance on a sail boat, that's another matter<G>.
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

For you perhaps, for me, not so much.

That, I'll have to leave to the discretion of the individuals involved, though I have not yet run across it in a situation that caused any serious inconvenience.

I can get the oil changed in my car for about the same as it costs me to get it done for me. I do it myself. Seen a couple botched oil plugs from the minimum wage earners at the oil change places. They won't cover costs on repairs or towing. All the places I buy my oil, aso collect for no charge. In one area that I lived, this was mandated by provincial law. In any case, there are always hazmat collection days or dropoffs.

Not really. I can visually inspect the condition of the other parts while I am so doing.

Same as oil. I can drop coolant at the places I buy, or send it through a couple different routes for recycling. Doesn't cost me, but for the time it takes.

Special as in a couple flex joints in the extension, or special like a seven sided socket? FWIW I probably would not buy a special tool for most of what I do. If the option is a $30 special tool or a bill for an hours shop time, so they can do a twenty minute job, I'll buy the tool.

I have three vehicles right now. The low mileage one is my wifes car, 250 thousand kilometers, my car has 394 thousand, and my new truck has 341 thousand. I just gave away a truck that had 425 thousand Km's on it. I put most of them there. It passed a safety check a couple years back.

Not as much as paying some joker $85 an hour shop rate to do what I can do in less time, not to mention that I don't bill out at book rate to myself. I try to keep a straight face when I hear of guys being quoted better than a months wages for work that takes less than a decent days work to do. The ones that pay those rates are keeping the economy rolling right along. :-) I don't muck with tires much anymore, and won't touch airbags or a/c (other than belts).

Let's not. Your money is already gone! :-)
Cheers Trevor Jones
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wrote:

My daily driver...94 Mazda B3000/Ford Ranger has 421,000 MILES on it.
I just hauled home a 800lb air compressor and next weekend..a 2000 lb milling machine
Gunner
"Pax Americana is a philosophy. Hardly an empire. Making sure other people play nice and dont kill each other (and us) off in job lots is hardly empire building, particularly when you give them self determination under "play nice" rules.
Think of it as having your older brother knock the shit out of you for torturing the cat." Gunner
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 18:05:11 GMT, Lew Hodgett

Don't know where you live but I've never heard of that anywhere.

Most vehicles take 4 quarts. Cost for those and a filter about 12 bucks on sale. Cost at the quick change places about $25. There are no corner gas stations that change oil around here.
I always do at least two cars at a time, takes about thirty minutes total, at that rate I figure I make about $52 per hour spent. An ok part time endeavour, and I know it is done right.
The place where I buy my oil takes the old for nothing. National chains. Advance, Autozone, O'reillys, etc all do it here. I drop off the old when I buy the new.

City will take it. no charge. Encourage you not to send it down the sewer.

Special tools? I maintain four vehicles in my family and the only tools needed are a plug socket, extension, swivel and a rachet. Those transverse V6 engines offer a challenge for the back plugs but can be done.

My four vehicles currently average 140K. I do almost all the work on them.

The only issue today is having to buy an OBD II scan tool. But even those are not terribly expensive, and all the parts stores have them to use if you can get the vehicle to the store. May loan them out.

Well, never have done that with a diesel, but I kept an old Universal Atomic Four going for about 16 years in my last sailboat. Talk about a simple engine.

However, in the spirit of the original post, my sons do very little, and I don't know why they never took to it.

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Frank Boettcher wrote:
> Don't know where you live but I've never heard of that anywhere.
If it interests you, start checking around.
> Most vehicles take 4 quarts. Cost for those and a filter about 12 > bucks on sale. Cost at the quick change places about $25. There are > no corner gas stations that change oil around here.
Even my little Tonka Toy truck uses 6 qts with a filter change.
Must be a very small vehicle.
Around here, $15 gets an oil & filter change when they run a sale, but haven't checked since crude hit $75/bbl.
> Special tools? I maintain four vehicles in my family and the only > tools needed are a plug socket, extension, swivel and a rachet.
You obviously never worked on Volkswagons, especially the diesel ones, the little buggers damn near require a special tool to pop the hood.
> My four vehicles currently average 140K. I do almost all the work on > them.
It is obviously a labor of love.
> However, in the spirit of the original post, my sons do very little, > and I don't know why they never took to it.
They are obviously smart enough to have found what they consider more productive ways to spend their free time than being a weekend grease monkey.
Give them credit.
Everybody adopts what works for them.
Today, I'd rather make sawdust than spend time trying to get the grease out from my fingernails (even with gloves) after trying to mess with a vehicle.
Lew
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On Sat, 05 Aug 2006 21:19:42 GMT, Lew Hodgett

I think it is poppycock, but I know it's not true in Boston, Philly, Houston, Tulsa, Mineapolis, Birmingham, and anywhere else I've ever lived or have relatives living. Please, you made the claim, tell us where you are restricted from working on your car. By who, the government?

Tonka toy? Please tell us what vehicle you have or know of that, without an extended pan, uses six quarts. I'm curious.

Average.

Where is here. Maybe I need to move there. At that rate, labor and overhead are free.

Yes, I have, but not recently.

No, a matter of wanting it done right and not paying a fortune to have it done wrong.

They are very smart, however, I hope they will eventually learn that a little elbow grease will save them a lot of money.

I do both.

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Frank Boettcher wrote:
> I think it is poppycock, but I know it's not true in Boston, Philly, > Houston, Tulsa, Mineapolis, Birmingham, and anywhere else I've ever > lived or have relatives living. Please, you made the claim, tell us > where you are restricted from working on your car. By who, the > government?
I'm in Southern California.
City ordinance or owner(s) if it is a condo or owner if a rental property.
A lot of it depends on location.
> Tonka toy? Please tell us what vehicle you have or know of that, > without an extended pan, uses six quarts. I'm curious.
A 4 cyl, Toyota Tacoma pick up truck, AKA: Tonka Toy.
Lew
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That explains a lot. The PRC (Peoples Republic of California) can be excluded when talking about normal circumstances.

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