A program language should be taught on the basis that it teaches the student programming and not that it jigsaws them into the world of business. I student that can transcend languages is likely to be a better programmer anyways, as they'll have more tools and models with which to get a task done.
I would agree with this in theory, however in practice it doesn't create a programmer who can transcend languages. In fact, they generally become very tied to specific language paradigms or capabilities. For instance, most universities seem to have selected Java as the language for CS. The problem here is that when they get into the "real world" they can't find a job doing anything but java. Why? Because they have no clue what a pointer is or how to use it. Most CS and related programs are hurting our students simply because the instructors don't want to teach about certain things, or because they or the students think it's just too hard. Most people I work with don't really understand how programming really works. I once had a co-worker who had been programming for 20 years, but had no idea that the CPU had registers, what they were for, or how they would be used. That's just sad.
My favorite class with respect to this was assembly. It was fairly easy to pick up and taught you how the computer interpreted commands at a relatively low level.
You (and I) are becoming something of a rarity now days, most people I work with know absolutely nothing about assembly.
Entropy requires no maintenance. -- Markoff Chaney