Sunday, February 10, 2013

A foundational mistake

John Adams, a fascinating Founding Father and presidential successor to George Washington, delivered himself of this quote:
I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.
It was a fond hope for progress, but actually --like a lot of progressive hopes--a recipe for destruction. Because in the process he describes, his effete grandchildren not only forgot that politics and war are our perennial foundations, but came to despise those who remembered it.


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