One of the more annoying features of modern life is the superstition that people are immune from stupidity. This translates into the belief, I might call it an article of faith, that people should be free to do whatever idiotic thing they please and suffer no ill consequences therefrom. Alas, life does not work that way. The piper always has to be paid sooner or later.
Walter Russell Mead explains this basic fact of life to the college bound who wish to ruin their lives quickly:
Third, find teachers and role models who will encourage you to develop an attitude of enlightened contempt for ordinary American middle class life, the world of business, and such bourgeois virtues as self-reliance, thrift, accountability and self-discipline. Specialize in sarcasm and snark.
Sixth, when you graduate and discover that you have to repay the loans and cannot get a job that pays enough to live comfortably while servicing your debts, be surprised. Blame society. Demand that the government or your parents or evil corporations bail you out.
Seventh, expect anyone (except for other clueless losers who’ve been as stupid and wasteful as you) to sympathize with your plight, or to treat you with anything but an infuriating mixture of sorrow, pity and contempt.
Go here to read the rest.
On the other hand, for those who might not be eager to ruin their lives, here are seven tips, college bound or not, that might help during their journey through this Vale of Tears:
1. There is a God, and you aren’t Him.
2. When deciding how to treat other people, remember that the wheel always comes round.
3. There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.
4. Do not confuse glibness with wisdom.
5. Showing up early is almost always a good idea.
6. Work should never be confused with play.
7. Stupidity, like vice, is always its own punishment.