7.3.17

AMERICA'S WEALTHIEST GATED COMMUNITY.

Thus does Margaret "University Diaries" Soltan characterize Middlebury College.  "The greatest privilege of all is being able to shut out offensive ideas."  Yes, with all the zeal one would expect of religious fanatics, as William Deresiewicz notes.
Selective private colleges have become religious schools. The religion in question is not Methodism or Catholicism but an extreme version of the belief system of the liberal elite: the liberal professional, managerial, and creative classes, which provide a large majority of students enrolled at such places and an even larger majority of faculty and administrators who work at them. To attend those institutions is to be socialized, and not infrequently, indoctrinated into that religion.
It has not yet come to the ritual burning of a heretic, but the True Believers are not making many converts.  Rod Dreher elaborates.
The tragedy of Trump is that [the Academic-Entertainment-Government Complex] really does need to be blown up, or if not blown up, then dismantled and rebuilt. But his fatally flawed character is probably going to make that harder to do than it ought to be.

Still, why, exactly, would a smart, self-respecting aspiring scholar want to go into a world of people who think and behave that way? If most people are sick of it, but it still goes on, what are we to conclude?
Inside Higher Ed documents the soul-searching.  I'll give Mr Murray, who was the latest recipient of snowflake Stalinism, the final word.  "Academia is already largely sequestered in an ideological bubble, but at least it’s translucent. That bubble will become opaque.

"Worse yet, the intellectual thugs will take over many campuses."

Perhaps, though, graduates of the land-grants and mid-majors will be able to compete for, and to hold, positions of authority in commerce and government that the snowflakes will not fill, as the elite college degree becomes a signal of something other than merit and probity.

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