It seems long ago now that I wrote an occasional column for "The Daily Princetonian." Let's say I had something of a contrarian streak, not feeling entirely persuaded that Princeton's orthodoxies were worthy of my fidelity. I realized one day that I'd struck a chord in high places when attending a gathering of Princeton's gliterati, and - wearing a self-identifying name-tag - a muckity-muck Dean whom I'd never met before looked at me with unfeigned horror and said, "Oh, you're Patrick Deneen...." Needless to say, I was denied tenure when the time came.
Well, now with the benefit of tenure if no additional wisdom, I've begun writing again for a college newspaper - this time "The Hoya." My first column appeared in yesterday's edition, and others will follow fortnightly. I suppose if I have unfulfilled childhood dreams, one would involve a baseball glove and proximity to second base. The other - to be an arbiter of opinion of those with newsprint on their fingers. I guess starting a "blawg" was a modest outlet for at least one of those frustrated fantasies.
In any event, my first column was titled (by the editors): "Universities Shoulder Some Blame for the Recession." Its inspiration: the idea that universities should display as prominently in their promotional literature and websites those alumni working on Wall Street who had contributed to the Great Recession as they do those who have won Rhodes Scholarships. Pretty funny, no?