Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Stupid Professor Tricks

The Boston Globe should change the name of its Ideas section to Conventional Wisdom or better yet Clichés. Last Sunday’s section featured a remarkably foolish piece by one Professor Richard Florida, who is (drum roll, please!) "director of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management". Now, I love both the UofT and the city of Toronto, but this professor and his silly article are not scoring points for their MBA program.

The article concerns the balance between the genders in marriage aged urban populations. Here’s a well worn cliché it uses:

One reason young women in the prime marriage years - the 25-44 age range - flock to big cities is to compete for the most eligible men. And smart women who gravitate to vibrant cities are more likely to stay single - for longer, at least - because they rightly refuse to settle for someone who can't keep up with them intellectually or otherwise.

Take that, feminists! Then follows this astounding exhibition of purest stupidity:

But women do have an advantage in the American West and Southwest. In greater Los Angeles, for example, there are 90,000 more single men than women. In Phoenix and the San Francisco Bay Area, single men outnumber single women by roughly 65,000.

Women have an advantage dating men in San Francisco, eh? Tell me more, Professor!

Apparently it never occurs to the professor to adjust his data for what polite society calls alternative lifestyle choices. The fact that a dating scene with a large surplus of young men is considered optimal by many of the young men who live in the Bay Area somehow seems not to have occurred to Professor Florida.

How and why did the Globe select this piece of drivel for the Sunday magazine? Did they read it first or just forward it straight to the printing plant?

P.S. This is NOT an April Fool's Day post, or article. The Globe ran the article on March 30.


flymorgue2 said...

I can see Amherst in blue on that map!

Harry said...

Oh quit boasting, flymorgue!