Monday, July 18, 2005

Popular and the Brain

In a recent article in the NY Times, David Brooks pleaded with Dubya to nominate a genius to fill Sandra Day O'Connor's seat on the Supreme Court. He argued that personal alliances should play no role in this tremendously important decision, and instead Bush should pick someone extremely intelligent to fill this role. (Imagine that - the nominee should actually be qualified!)

"Ideas drive history, so you want to pick the person with the biggest brain."

And yet, I keep thinking of the lyrics of a song from Wicked, in which Galinda tries to convince the wicked-witch-to-be that all that matters is popularity.

"...think of
Celebrated heads of state or
Specially great communicators
Did they have brains or knowledge?
Don't make me laugh!
They were popular!"

The optimist in me wants to belive that Brooks is right, that history and life are all about intelligence and genius, improvement and progress. That history is indeed the triumph of the idea. And yet, I am left with this pessimistic thought that it's all about popular.

I'd like to believe that history depends on more than the way people choose to wear their hair, that life and death and survival depend on intelligence.

I'd like to believe.


At 7/18/05, 5:23 PM, Blogger Me, Uncensored said...

We need someone godly to fill that position. Lots of people are fasting that the President will make the right decision, even if it's an unpopular one.

All the gains good men have made in the past 5 years will be meaningless if we end up with a SDO clone.


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