October 22, 2009
Steve Sailer has a trenchant critique of the latest nonsense from the biggest peddler of conventional “wisdom” at the New York Times, Tom Friedman, who has long argued that education can prevent Americans from being harmed by globalization. Except Friedman now tells us that education alone is not enough, since even well-educated Americans are being harmed economically by globalization. In addition to traditonal academic skills, all of us also need to learn how to sell ourselves, to be “rainmakers” in law firm parlance. Sailer’s entire takedown of Friedman is well worth reading, but here is the heart of Sailer’s critique:
Okay, so our schools have to not only teach the times tables, they have to teach salesmanship and entrepreneurship. Hmmhmm, my impression from watching The Wire was that our public schools were already turning out more than enough crack salesmen but not enough kids who were good at arithmetic.
You know, this is almost enough to make you wonder if globalization isn’t all that Tom Friedman has cracked it up to be.
I kind of have the impression that quite a few Americans, like, maybe, two or three hundred million of them, don’t possess either the IQs or the personalities to be rainmakers. Are they permanently obsolete in the world that Friedman has been such an energetic cheerleader for?
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