“The torpor of his mind renders him… incapable of relishing or bearing a part in any rational conversation…”

Draft of 2006.03.20 ☛ 2015.07.02

May include: policyphilosophy&c.

At Stumbling and Mumbling: Adam Smith’s influence:

The man whose whole life is spent in performing a few simple operations, of which the effects are perhaps always the same, or very nearly the same, has no occasion to exert his understanding or to exercise his invention in finding out expedients for removing difficulties which never occur. He naturally loses, therefore, the habit of such exertion, and generally becomes as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to become. The torpor of his mind renders him not only incapable of relishing or bearing a part in any rational conversation, but of conceiving any generous, noble, or tender sentiment, and consequently of forming any just judgment concerning many even of the ordinary duties of private life. Of the great and extensive interests of his country he is altogether incapable of judging…. It is otherwise in the barbarous societies.

This has, needless to say, nothing whatsoever to do with my subjective experience of graduate school.