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Jonathan Potts

I wonder if the average worker for Mellon or Carnegie could quote Tennyson. Arguably, high culture is on the decline; but despite our justifiable hand-wringing over the state of many our public schools, I'm sure that the populace as a whole is much better educated now than in the early part of the 20th century. One could argue, though, that we live in a much more vocational society, in that education is viewed as a means to an end, rather than an end in itself. That could explain why today's "elites" are not as well-read as their predecessors. (Bill Gates is of course one of the most successful college drop-outs in history.)

Have you ever read Simon Winchester's two books about the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary? That will make you weep for the loss of culture and literacy among educated people. The men who contributed to that seminal tome were highly well-versed in numerous subjects. Many of them came from humble roots, and their education and knowledge was a ticket to a better life. But, it probably helped that they were white and male.

sean mcdaniel

Hey, can a guy who works for Carnegie Mellon quote Tennyson?

sean mcdaniel

Sam,

Mellon's reaction to the growling baliff non-smoking blast is a nice counterpoint to Grisham's response to the parking tickets. Seems as though literacy and manners are in decline.

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