Coincident to John’s notice yesterday of the latest campus silliness at the University of Minnesota, my cover story on “The Death of the University” is out today in National Review. The article is partly a memoir of my year at Boulder, which builds into a general critique of the ailments of most universities today. The story is behind a paywall (though 25 cents for the article by itself!), but here’s a short excerpt from the opening:
Boulder is a magnet for the vegan-hippie/affluent-leftist demographic, a place where the city council debates whether we should call our dogs and cats “animal companions” rather than “pets,” and a special “climate change” levy appears on electricity bills. It was not unusual to encounter clouds of pot smoke during my early-morning jogs through the downtown Pearl Street mall, even before Colorado legalized the recreational use of marijuana in a referendum. The town has more bicycles than cars, and there were street protests against the opening of a Walmart. Boulder has a rigidly protected greenbelt surrounding it, pushed by anti-growth, “quality of life” environmentalists back in the 1970s, and I loved to tell liberal audiences that conservatives wholly approve of the Boulder greenbelt because it makes the quarantine so much easier to enforce: Liberals trying to escape can be more readily rounded up by the tea-party pickets on the perimeter and sent back downtown with a fresh package of fair-trade organic kale.
Enjoy the whole thing.