Matters up here are further complicated by what turns out to be a fractured metacarpal. I declined the cast in favor of a brace, but still, I was a primitive hunt 'n pecker to begin with. This is ridiculous. My thoughts are running so far ahead of my available fingers that it's like typing under water.
So I'll just highlight and expand upon some peripheral points without getting into the main core of the argument. For example, Gilder writes of scouring the Harvard catalogue and concluding "that 80 percent of the courses stultified their students."
And they don't just stultify intellectually, which is bad enough, but spiritually; you might say they warp the person both existentially and ontologically, i.e., in both knowing and being.
Thus, a significant majority of courses at this quintessentially "elite" university are "either self-evident or wrong, ideological or tautological, twisted or trivial." No doubt Miley Cyrus will soon be a guest lecturer in their Womyn's Studies department.
Why is it our business if deluded parents want to shell out 200 large to have their children indoctrinated with the latest perverse nonsense?
I see two potential problems: first, some of the children will lack the skepticism, or self-awareness, or independence of mind, or grounding in higher truth, to resist the indoctrination. Second, one of these idiots might become president.
Or as Gilder says, "Now those stultified students are running the country."
Stultified, like how?
Well, if, say, a president has no allegiance to truth but only power, then we have no right to expect intellectual consistency, as truth will be in service to power rather than vice versa. To the extent that consistency is present, it will be in terms of adhering to the needs of power, which change from day to day.
Thus, the Constitutional Scholar assured us when running for president that "The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat."
Your point being? That was then. The needs of power were different. Likewise, no one was more outraged than Obama about the IRS's political persecution of taxpayers. Now? Phony scandal.
An associated question is why do the tenured despise the very economic system that makes their frivolous lives possible? This strikes me as a plausible motive:
"Capitalism offers nothing but frustrations and rebuffs to those who, by virtue of their superior intelligence, birth, credentials, or ideals, believe themselves entitled to get without giving, to take without risking, to profit without understanding, and to be exalted without humbling themselves to meet the unruly demands of others in an always perilous and unpredictable life."
The market, for example, can only offer health insurance, and compete with other companies for your patronage -- i.e., in pleasing the consumer. (I should add that this would be the case in a real market, uncontaminated by the abundance of low-entropy noise from the state.)
But Obama didn't even need to please a majority of skeevy politicians, let alone citizens. Rather, through outrageous lies, naked bribery and legislative trickery -- thuggery, humbuggery, and skulduggery -- he was able to force this beast upon 300 million other human beings, who are now significantly less free than they were the day before.
At any rate, "It is not surprising, therefore, that the chief source of misunderstanding of capitalism is the intelligentsia, who disdain bourgeois or 'middle class' values and deny the paramount role of individual enterprise in the progress of the race."
In the deluded minds of progressives, they believe they are the cause of progress rather than its parasites.