Have You Become Complacent?
I recently came across an essay by Tanner Greer about the rise and decline of public intellectuals. Many appear as geniuses for a time, before later becoming a punch line. Why does this happen?
Greer starts with an obvious explanation — genius peaks. As we age, our raw talents decline and we can no longer sustain brilliance. I’d add to this regression to the mean. Chance will allow some the right idea at the right time to make them seem prophetic. But luck fades.
However, toward the end of the essay, Greer offers another explanation. Using Thomas Friedman…