The Childish Generation

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Thomas Sowell:

No one in World War II demanded that President Roosevelt present them with a timetable for the end of the war, much less for when our military occupation would end in Europe. Nor did anyone demand to know how much the war would cost in dollars and cents. But the maturity to think beyond the moment has apparently become far more scarce today than it was in the days of the greatest generation. Will future historians call us the childish generation? How much today's childishness will cost this country in the long run only the future will tell -- and it may tell in blood.

Link from Amanda Strassner.

Update: More from Sowell on the public's supposed right to know and a followup on the insanity of many of the accusations given that due process is taking place. One problem with blogs is that so many of the columnists I enjoy now get less time because I'm looking around at mere bloggers, so it's nice when people link to real columnists. Thanks to Baldilocks for linking these.


I have long been a fan of the novel titled "The Time Machine" by H.G. Wells. Aside from the fact that science-fiction-type narratives, particularly those involving alternate timelines, fascinate me to no end, the narrator in the story makes several powerful observations about human natures and advancement. In the story, several hundred centuries into the future, and long past the apex of human development, humankind has de-generated into a race of beings whose only capacities in life are playing, eating, making gentle love, and sleeping. The enormous powers of intellectual achievement, artistic expression, feats of industrial productions, have all long since left humankind. In its place lived a feeble people who lived in a world transformed by the powers of their ancestors, but who no longer had the capacities (or de-evolved the capacities) to do the same for their futurity. Wells makes a compelling point that "strength is the outcome of necessity", and puts a premium on weaknesses. With nature finally under their command and issues of society resolved and perfected after so many centuries, these progenies no longer had the need to develop their strengths of mind and of body, and gradually fell into decay.

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