thev can assume their rightful placesrnthere. Good work habits must, of course,rnbe “elicited, not coerced.”rnThe good doctor did not, as promised,rntell us how to accomplish all this. Instead,rnhe spent his time attacking criticsrnof multiculturalism. He projected a slidernof a National Review cover published afterrnthe L.A. riots, with a photo of a man,rnpossibh Fhspanie, walking away from arnburning store with a huge case of Coca-rnCola. The headline said “How to Get arnWeek’s Groceries Absolutely Free, Plusrn$600 Million in Federal Aid.” This, hernpointed out, was tpical of the intolerantrnmajorit} attitude. For example, the fellowrnin the picture was not carrying anynutritiousrnfood at all, onl- soft drinks. “Irnhope this gentleman got his week’srnworth of groceries,” he said.rnThe descent into silliness acceleratedrnthe next morning with a presentation byrna Mr. David Crocker, who runs a firmrnthat, in the lilting language of the conferencernbrochure, “specializes in the design,rndevelopment, and presentation ofrnlectures, seminars, and training programsrnto enhance executive, management, andrnorganizational effectiveness.” Like thernothers, Mr. Crocker railed about bad attitudesrnon the part of white people, usingrnas a rather perplexing illustration a newsrnstor- about “two men robbing a store.”rnThey must be white, he pointed out, becausernif they were black, the news mediarnwould sa- “two black men.”rnI hring people by ethnic group accordingrnto the makeup of the local populationrnis not good enough, he informed us.rn”I measure my people by Diversity!” herndeclaimed, and told us that one mustrnscour the country, if necessary, perhapsrneven relocate, to relieve the hly-whitenessrnof one’s workplace. “Can’t find nornblack people in Minneapolis?” he roared.rn”Gotta go to a black universityl” Hernenlivened his tirade with bewilderingrnpredictions about how the “chain ofrncommand” is obsolete and will be replacedrnb- a “spider web.”rnBut the best was vet to come. Ourrnlunehtimc speaker was to be DavidrnPearec Snyder, the “Life-Styles Editor”rnof The Futurist magazine. Mr. Snyder,rna bearded, excitable man, was in triumphalistrnecstasies about the coming InformationrnAge. According to him, thernnew Information Highway will RevolutionizernSociety, and “a Cornucopia ofrnthe Benefits of Technology is going tornSweep Down On Us.” As we pecked atrnour tiny portions of broiled fish andrnshredded zucchini, Mr. Snyder regaledrnus with his vision of America’s imminentrnmetamorphosis into Utopia. He told usrnthat the problems of poverty, high crime,rnsocietal upheaval, and so on, are thernresult of the “transition to an infomatedrnsociety.” It is this transition that isrnresponsible for the rise of the neo-Nazisrnin Europe, the National Front in Britain,rnand, of course, Vladimir Zhirinovsky.rnThis “transformation process” willrnclimax in the flowering of a new age. Arnrestructured economy will providerncustom-tailored goods to everyone, andrndramatically increase our standard ofrnliving. The “infomated” society willrncustom-tailor a place for everyone, ofrnwhatever race, culture, or disability. Ofrncourse, this means that America willrnthrive on Diversity.rnMr. Snyder became increasinglyrnenergetic. He waved his arms. He madernlittle fists. Hierarchical companies andrnorganizations will be Reinvented as collectionsrnof teams, he told us. USDA’srnjob, he said, will be to use the InformationrnHighway to Retool Governmentrnand Reinvent Agriculture. “Let’s turnrnagriculture into the first sector of therneconomy that’s completely infomatedl”rnhe exhorted. In our holy quest for thernnext higher plane of existence. Diversityrnwill be invaluable, according to Mr. Snyder.rnIt “gives a yeasty tension” to society.rnIt is the “key to exceptionality.” It givesrnus our moral standing and leadership inrnthe world. Because of it, in fact, “we arernthe world!”rnSure, he admitted, the transition willrnbe difficult. So, he said, the Revolutionrnmust have the power to “break legs.” Besides,rnhe proclaimed, “the Founding Fathersrnnever said it would be easy to be thernWorld’s Greatest Society.” He woundrnup by evoking the travails of the Pioneers,rnand quoting “our greatest FoundingrnFather, Benjamin Franklin [BenjaminrnFranklin?]: ‘Given the difficulty, it isrnworth the candle!'” before subsiding tornthunderous applause.rnThere was more, but I didn’t stickrnaround to see it. Instead I staggered outside,rnhalf expecting to exit into a Martianrnlandscape with purple sky and chartreusernclouds, but finding instead the same oldrndecrepit D.C. downtown, winos and all.rnThat night I started updating my resume,rnwhich now begins David Wright-rnLopez.rnDavid T. Wright writes from Washington,rnD.C.rnWeak Receptionrnby Stacey KorsrnSeveral months ago I attended a concertrnat New York’s Lincoln Centerrncommemorating the 50th anniversary ofrnWNYC, the not-for-profit radio stationrnthat is home to National Public Radio,rnand one of only two stations left in Manhattanrnthat broadcast classical music.rn(The third, WNCN, recently switchedrnover from yesterday’s court favorites torntoday’s rock favorites.) At that time,rnWNYC’s commercial license was stillrnowned by the city—it has since beenrnpurchased by the WNYC Foundation—rnand Mayor Rudolph Giuliani was threateningrnto sell it in an effort to help easernNew York’s budgetary woes. It is, unfortunately,rnan oft-repeated governmentrnscenario, and one that is especially popularrnin the current Gingrich-led Congress:rnwhen money gets tight, stick it to thernarts. Why it surprises me each and everyrntime it happens I do not know. Anyway,rnin the midst of this potential crisis, thernstation decided to throw a party. In whatrnwas undoubtedly a Herculean—andrnhighly last minute—effort. Mayor Giulianirnmade an anniversary declaration tornWNYC in which he promised not to sellrnthe station unless there was “no otherrnalternative.” And with that quasiencouragingrnpiece of news, the evening’srnfestivities began.rnSuppose that a much-admired restaurantrncelebrated the anniversary of itsrnopening with a special tasting menu, createdrnby some of the most renownedrnchefs of the day. Now suppose that allrnthat the menu offered was chicken, preparedrnin a variety of ways. A quaint idea,rnperhaps; but no matter how different thernentrees’ presentations may be on the surface,rnwhen you remove all the fancyrnsauces and pickles, you are still left with,rnwell, chicken. And even if you simplyrnadore the agreeable fowl, by the third orrnfourth course your taste buds will probablyrngrow tired of it.rnMy ears suffered a similar plight atrnthe WNYC concert. On the menu wasrnPulitzer Prize-winning John Ashbery’srnAUGUST 1995/45rnrnrn