I agree with Derb. Given the population profiles of most western nations (NRO In-House Demography Bore alert!), we should be trying to figure out how to telescope education rather than send the entire citizenry to college till they’re 30 so they can come out and be “community organizers” and “diversity outreach coordinators”. When Barack is elected Community-Organizer-In-Chief with Michelle as First Diversity Consultant, perhaps every other practitioner of their grim callings can be reassigned, or, if not, dumped on an atoll in the south Pacific to community-organize amongst themselves.
On the tinkering, Derb’s even more right. I have a lot of respect for fellows who are brilliant at one thing but nevertheless like to potter at something else entirely. I remember being very impressed to discover that Frank Loesser, the composer of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” and Guys And Dolls, was also a prodigious carpenter and cabinetmaker whose home was filled with amazing pieces of his own design and construction. He once got one of those pompous letters from some Hollywood vice-president or other headed “From The Desk Of…” So he went into his shop and spent the weekend crafting a beautiful life-size desk corner complete with inlay and moldings, and mailed it back to the studio suit with a piece of paper headed “From The Desk Of Frank Loesser”.
On a broader socio-cultural point, I vaguely feel that people who don’t know where stuff comes from or how it works are more receptive to bigger government. That’s one reason why Canada and much of western Europe, both of which are more urbanized and in which more people live in small apartments, vote leftier than America. As I said, that’s a hunch, but I’d be interested to know if there’s any data to back up my prejudices.