LOL state a differing opinion and everyone gets all butt hurt. I even said the MSF is a good resource, however I do not believe it to be the be-all end-all some people tout it as. Familiarizing yourself with basic techniques (such as the front vs. back brake, noted above) should be common sense.
I have taken the course, only to comply with the state requirements. The MSF didn't exist when your grandfather hopped on a motorcycle for the first time, and kids aren't sent before getting on a dirt bike.
Heck, fans used to be made so that you could fit your whole hand through them... and your parents probably have all of their fingers.