Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Brooks to Kids: Just Chill Out, Dudes! 

Dawkins writes:

Hey Mom and Dad!

Here's a totally awesome new column by David Brooks that you can share with your kids! Never mind that in the last couple weeks, Brooks has claimed that liberal secularists are racists and terrorist appeasers or that Richard Clarke is a bloodthirsty partisan lacking in any credibility.

In today's column, "Stressed for Success?", Brooks (a concerned parent just like you and me who spends "a lot of time meeting with students on college campuses") talks with our kids -- not down to them -- about the college application process.
Many of you high school seniors are in a panic at this time of year, coping with your college acceptance or rejection letters. Since the admissions process has gone totally insane, it's worth reminding yourself that this is not a particularly important moment in your life.

[I]f at any moment in your later life you so much as mention your SAT scores in conversation, you will be considered a total jerk.

[I]n adulthood, you'll find that a talent for regurgitating what superiors want to hear will take you only halfway up the ladder, and then you'll stop there. The people who succeed most spectacularly, on the other hand, often had low grades. They are not prudential. They venture out and thrive where there is no supervision, where there are no preset requirements.
"People who succeed most spectacularly… had low grades… no supervision… no preset requirements…"

(Now who do we all know who totally made it to the top without good grades, without studying hard, without thinking about anything, and who's thrived in his current office without any way uncool "supervision" or "requirements"?)

I'd definitely recommend that you share this piece of work with your kids. They can read it, take it to school, show it to their friends, enjoy the common cause they've found with Brooks, and then, come his next column on Saturday, when Brooks explains how John Kerry carries water for Ayman Al-Zawahiri or drops insinuations that Richard Clarke is a pedophile, your kids can get in on the ground floor with the best "reasoned," "moderate," and "thoughtful" commentator going today.

And if they apply themselves correctly -- get bad grades, don't try hard, but make the right friends, sell their souls to Satan, and regurgitate the words they're told to by their ideological masters -- maybe someday they'll have a way cool column in the New York Times!


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