Thomas Sowell at National Review:
When I saw signs in Yellowstone National Park warning visitors not to get too close to a buffalo, I realized that this was a warning that no illiterate farmer of a bygone century would have needed.
What’s this about? Liberals playing with buffalo. It’s some sort of craze. Kids see An Inconvenient Truth, then they swarm our national parks and hamburger ranches to play paddyfingers with bison. Even Bubba’s smarter than that.
No one would have had to tell that illiterate farmer’s daughter not to stand by the side of a highway, trying to hitch a ride with strangers, as too many college girls have done, sometimes with results that ranged all the way up to their death.
Also the flower children getting murdered. Peter Fonda’s responsible for some of this, what with the motorcycles, unmanaged hair, and negro drugs. Liberals are so reckless, they’re going right extinct. Go on and die ethnics and college types. Keep dancing with danger.
Actually, this is Sowell’s take on work. The intellectuals’ illusion of ‘meaningful work.’ But before we get to that, let’s agree educated Americans are stupid. Look what literacy did for the dismembered co-eds. Great opening, huh?
What is “meaningful work”?
The underlying notion seems to be that it is work whose performance is satisfying or enjoyable in itself. But if that is the only kind of work that people should have to do, how is garbage to be collected, or how are bedpans to be emptied in hospitals, or jobs with life-threatening dangers to be performed?
None of those unpleasant activities, the bedpans being emptied, etc, go on currently, so it’s a pretty big problem. We’re drowning in sewage, so please, Thomas, we might owe you our lives.
Does anyone imagine that firemen enjoy going into burning homes and buildings to rescue people trapped by the flames? That soldiers going into combat think it is fun?
In the real world, many things are done simply because they have to be done, not because doing them brings immediate pleasure to those who do them.
And there we have it. Why do people empty garbage cans? Because they have to. God Bless, get back to Facebook safely, write if you get rabies.
Some people take justifiable pride in working to take care of their families, whether or not the work itself is great.
Done. Also you could pay them decently. That’s been known to grease the wheels. The fact that people are doing all these difficult jobs in return for crappy wages isn’t what strikes Tom. It strikes him how disastrous it is that intellectuals tell people to get educations. And seek better work. Thankfully, the miserably underpaid city worker simply does what he’s told to do. We live in a perfect society.