This is off-topic but relates directly to why the world is going to hell. In large part, this is simply due to the fact that the very worst people are in charge. I'm quite sure that, outside of America, thoughtful individuals must think that many in the electorate here have lost their minds. But "supporting" Nigel Farage or Marine Le Pen surely does not entail total agreement with their policies, or even their views. It is a symptom, rather, of the resolute rejection of "lying liars and their lies": i.e., of professional politicians and media spin-doctors (there are no leaders and no journalists left in this world, apparently).
In one part of my little world, this is the latest news of the weird.
It's trivial, yes. But also deeply symptomatic. First, it shows that universities -- which used to be much closer to the church than a bordello -- are today status whores (like everyone else). (As a footnote, from my now archaic upbringing, bragging, self-promotion, flashy cars, and, yes, even racism were all condemned by my elders as being irremediably 'lower class'.) Second, it betrays the fact that the bureaucrats who run them are profoundly uneducated, illiterate, and lazy. It is, to my mind, a classic example of hypercorrection. (Pay especial attention to this part of the description: "A speaker or writer who produces a hypercorrection generally believes that the form is correct through misunderstanding of these [grammatical] rules, often combined with a desire to appear formal or educated.")
The desire for status and attention means that the following factoid is somehow believed to be important: "Forbes has ranked the University of South Dakota among the top 650 colleges in the United States." Surely anything beyond the "top ten" is otiose. "We are #411!" -- really? (Where my girlfriend works is #634 and where I work? #646! Now them's braggin' rights!)
The plain fact of the matter is that Forbes never said anything like what is found inside the supposed quote. The quote is entirely illusory, the result of spewing forth buzz words and, then, coming to believe your own bullshit.
"We are excited about the endorsement as the best in the Dakotas, but we are equally excited about where USD stands in our athletic conferences," said Scott Pohlson, USD vice president of Marketing, Enrollment & University Relations. "Being the best in the Missouri Valley Conference and second in the Summit League Conference aligns well with our strategic plan at USD, which is to be the best small public flagship university in the nation built upon a liberal arts foundation. It is an exciting time to be at USD, and Forbes’ endorsement reinforces why our Coyote Family continues to grow in stature."
This farrago, this word salad, is as meaningless as anything else that might be announced on broadcast television. Smoke and mirrors. Sodden appearance trumps intransigent reality.
What is the way out of this labyrinthine madhouse? I wish I knew. I suppose one can start here: