Tom Friedman’s Career, as Predicted by C.S. Lewis

John Warner’s new column in Inside Higher Ed got me wondering about the enduring appeal of certain high-profile columnists. And then I remembered The Screwtape Letters.

In C.S. Lewis’s classic Christian satire, senior demon Screwtape advises his nephew Wormwood, a newbie tempter, on how to get his “patient” to look away from the truth:

Don’t waste time trying to make him think that materialism* is true! Make him think it is strong, or stark, or courageous – that it is the philosophy of the future. That’s the sort of thing he cares about.

And that’s how you do it.

*Substitute: wisdom of invading Iraq; effectiveness of massive online classes; etc.

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