American Buffaloed

Excellent profile of David Mamet and his gradual renunciation of Lefty politics. Here's a scene from a couple of years ago when he told a room full of academics at Stanford that higher education had become preposterous:

Higher ed, he said, was an elaborate scheme to deprive young people of their freedom of thought. He compared four years of college to a lab experiment in which a rat is trained to pull a lever for a pellet of food. A student recites some bit of received and unexamined wisdom—“Thomas Jefferson: slave owner, adulterer, pull the lever”—and is rewarded with his pellet: a grade, a degree, and ultimately a lifelong membership in a tribe of people educated to see the world in the same way.
“If we identify every interaction as having a victim and an oppressor, and we get a pellet when we find the victims, we’re training ourselves not to see cause and effect,” he said. Wasn’t there, he went on, a “much more interesting .  .  . view of the world in which not everything can be reduced to victim and oppressor?”
A worthwhile read, but let the record show that whatever his politics and in spite of his doing more than anyone alive to truly mainstream the F bomb, I like him for the sole reason that he once wrote a play entitled Keep Your Pantheon.