Shop Class as Soulcraft, an article about the value of working with your hands and the increasing assembly-line nature of knowledge work:

Much of the ‚Äújobs of the future‚Äù rhetoric surrounding the eagerness to end shop class and get every warm body into college, thence into a cubicle, implicitly assumes that we are heading to a ‚Äúpost-industrial‚Äù economy in which everyone will deal only in abstractions. Yet trafficking in abstractions is not the same as thinking. White collar professions, too, are subject to routinization and degradation, proceeding by the same process as befell manual fabrication a hundred years ago: the cognitive elements of the job are appropriated from professionals, instantiated in a system or process, and then handed back to a new class of worker—clerks—who replace the professionals. If genuine knowledge work is not growing but actually shrinking, because it is coming to be concentrated in an ever-smaller elite, this has implications for the vocational advice that students ought to receive…

The trades are then a natural home for anyone who would live by his own powers, free not only of deadening abstraction, but also of the insidious hopes and rising insecurities that seem to be endemic in our current economic life. This is the stoic ideal.