It’s Time to Marginalize the University and Revive the Café

It’s time to marginalize the university. Universities have come to play an outsize, unwarranted, and often malign role in American life. But their influence and prestige doesn’t stem from any recent intellectual accomplishment or even insidious political agenda. Instead it comes down to “power” to use a word much in vogue among academics. And this power, more than anything else, is economic. Without this power, why would people take academics’ more ridiculous pronouncements so seriously, or seriously at all in the case of communication studies departments? The limitations and drawbacks of North American academia are obvious. This goes beyond the intolerance, irrationality, illiberalism, even violence associated with some “studies” or other departments that see advocacy as their primary mission. Less remarked upon are the catastrophic intellectual failures of the social sciences. This includes the complete inability of foreign policy researchers to forecast the demise of the Soviet Union; the failure of political scientists, with few exceptions, to predict the rise of Trump; and the deeply embarrassing record of macro-economists in terms of warning about the … Continue reading It’s Time to Marginalize the University and Revive the Café