Sure, public intellectual Ta-Nehisi Coates got a $625,000 MacArthur Genius Grant, but now Ibram X. Kendi, with his barely 3 digit IQ blows TNC’s mark away on the Bux/IQ metric with a $10 million payoff from Jack Dorsey, founder of Twitter.
Kendi was recently (July 1, 2020) also awarded Boston U.’s endowed chair previously held by Elie Wiesel, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Humanities, which honors the GOP Treasury Secretary under Harding, Coolidge and Hoover. So the Summer of George has been very, very good for Ibram X. Kendi.
It sure can pay to be a pet of the elite. Or, to write the first books pushing a new PC theme, no matter how poor they are. Sailer also draws attention to a review in The New Criterion by Theodore Dalrymple of the books of Kendi and Robin DiAngelo:
These two best-selling books about racism—White Fragility, by Robin DiAngelo, and How to Be an Antiracist, by Ibram X. Kendi—are tedious not because they are long but because of their almost unrelievedly hectoring tone. You feel in reading them that you have been cornered at a party by a monomaniac who will not let you escape until he has preached you into total silence, if not acquiescence. …
Like DiAngelo, [Kendi] is a rhetorician with little regard to or for the truth: … He differs from DiAngelo in believing that it is not just whites who can be racists, but all human beings, and in this sense he is somewhat better than she. But he is terribly muddled on the question of how far it is permissible to attribute group characteristics to populations without being racist. I do not think it is worthwhile trying to extract a coherent doctrine from him. …
He believes that all differences in outcome between groups can be the result only of prejudice and discrimination, and that if the latter were removed the former would disappear. Nor does he recognize, even faintly, that to bring about the equality between groups that he believes is the only equitable arrangement for society would require a totalitarian regime that would make North Korea seem like a libertarian’s dream.
Ah, the big PC lie, right there. To fix this “oppression”, the left just has to take over society and suspend democracy. It’s for your own good, bigot.
Perhaps the most interesting question raised by these books is why, when they are so badly written, self-indulgent, and intellectually nugatory, when they are so plainly written in the spirit of what Karl Popper called reinforced dogmatism, they should be so popular among the Western intelligentsia. Let us hope that this is not a question for an Edward Gibbon of the next millennium to answer.