Niall Ferguson was not content to let so many of the other Big Name Thinkers gain attention through lapses in professionalism, oh no. He thought he would get in on the Race to Obsolescence with an Op-Ed about why Obama needs to lose that is so bad, I wonder what happened to the man who earned such credibility in the first place.
You can click the link and read the prose and decide for yourself. But here’s a paragraph that concerns me particularly:
I was a good loser four years ago. But this year, fired up by the rise of Ryan, I want badly to win.
Mr Ferguson, is not, to my knowledge, a US citizen, and as such has no business in making such self-interested comments about our country. I spend significant time in Canada and France, and I never have public opinions about their elections because it is none of my business. This piece is in bad taste.
Still, what drives a man of such accomplishment to write such limp prose with godawful logic? I am hereby naming a codicil entitled the Garland Authority/Quality Half-Life Coefficient, which is not scientific, but which may have a fake graph and some made up statistics added at a later time, befitting my hopes of becoming a science-lite author selling at airports. The GAQHLC describes the rate at which a certain intellectual’s work will decline in quality as their authority continues to climb through constant public relations efforts of various newspaper and television networks. About 95% of the world’s elite intellectuals are somewhere on this curve.
Ferguson is beginning the roller-coaster slide on the way down. Please note that you do not have a screen big enough to include Thomas Friedman on this chart. He is a statistical outlier, proving the theory too much to be valid.