Where the society is comprised of human beings, schools can help recognize and promote talent. Where the society had been body- and mind-snatched, automata replacing humans, other criteria apply. If I were a robot I too would probably prefer C3PO to John Donne or John Milton.
pk has been through all that again and again, but here's a new tack: actually, a side track.
Once upon a time someone cultivated a potato in order to harvest and eat it: or at least to sell it. In modern markets all sorts of other considerations come into play. One may cultivate a million bushels of potatoes, and harvest them, only to dump them off a cliff: keep the price up: maybe to spite somebody ...
Of course Bucky Fuller said that the basic purpose of higher education was to keep young bucks out of circulation, so the old bucks didn't have to fight them.
So I just have to repeat a story told at Knatz.com in a different connection:
The Philadelphia lawyer I first did art tax shelters with in 1978 got antsy about art shelters for 1979. Instead of just financing graphic multiples that few expected to sell or oil wells where no one expected to find oil (neither would they try very hard), or indy movies with budgets that assured the films' non-completion, Mr. Solomon Liberty, Esq. sold time shares in a railroad freight car permanently parked on a rusty side railing not even connected to the system of railroad tracks. A thirty minute share would lose the reluctant tax payer a quick $30,000.When I went to graduate school, I was using its rusty labyrinth for my own purposes. I was in no great hurry to butt heads with the old stags.
But once I was ready anxious, had something to say, something important I couldn't find a single old stag willing to take on a real challenge.
Had the robots been switched in while I wasn't looking? Or had the switch been completed before I arrived? I'm not sure, but 1968 ... early 1970s really was a time when the fed put the screws to the open-beaked begging institutions, processing only establishment orthodoxy. The old stags have no idea how to battle: their puissance has been bestowed on them by magic, by fiat. No fake society can risk injury to its expensive stage properties, its fake faculty.
The labyrinth, despite its low top, was bottomless.