This morning I was laying in bed reading DFW's speech to Kenyon College in Ohio. I put the book down and said to my wife: "You know, the thing with business schools is that the only lesson taught is to maximize profit. They say here are all the levers, this is how you work them, the situation is dynamic, history has shown us to pull X levers at Y times, the future is unknown, go out there and maximize profit. And everything else at B-school is a derivative of this idea."
I was trying to use that statement as a prelude for why an undergraduate liberal arts education matters, wait, no. I was trying to use that statement as a prelude for why an undergraduate liberal arts education is the best. Why its the only intelligent choice. I was going to go on to say that liberal arts teaches one to have perspective, to recognize that people order the world in different ways. The b-school kid orders the world in terms of how it relates to the bottom line, the math kid thinks in sums and products, the engineer in forces (gravity, friction, momentum), the chemist in unions, reactions, and hypotheses. While the liberal arts kid is spared the arrogance of thinking that his way of ordering the world is the not only the right one, it is the only one.
But then my wife said, "You always have to be right, don't you."
And I said, "It's not my fault everyone else is stupid."
And from there, it seemed way too hard to get back to the "liberal arts kids are not arrogant" argument.