The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy

The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy

The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy

The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy

Synopsis

Sowell presents a devastating critique of the mind-set behind the failed social policies of the past thirty years. Sowell sees what has happened during that time not as a series of isolated mistakes but as a logical consequence of a tainted vision whose defects have led to crises in education, crime, and family dynamics, and to other social pathologies. In this book, he describes how elites- the anointed- have replaced facts and rational thinking with rhetorical assertions, thereby altering the course of our social policy.

Excerpt

The views of political commentators or writers on social issues often range across a wide spectrum, but their positions on these issues are seldom random. If they are liberal, conservative, or radical on foreign policy, they are likely to be the same on crime, abortion, or education. There is usually a coherence to their beliefs, based on a particular set of underlying assumptions about the world--a certain vision of reality.

Visions differ of course from person to person, from society to society, and from one era to another. Visions also compete with one another, whether for the allegiance of an individual or of a whole society. But in some eras one vision so predominates over all others that it can be considered the prevailing vision of that time and place. This is the current situation among the intelligentsia of the United States and much of the Western world, however much their vision may differ from the visions of most other people. Individual variations in applying this underlying vision do not change the fundamental fact that there is a particular framework of assumptions within which most contemporary social and political discourse takes place in the media, in academia, and in politics.

The rise of the mass media, mass politics, and massive government means that the beliefs which drive a relatively small group of . . .

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