For more pessimism, see Derbyshire's essay: "The Lost Eden of Robert A. Heinlein"
It was pure Murray: filled with that good-natured, profoundly decent midwestern optimism that Charles brings to everything he writes and says.
It was also heart-breakingly naive. I agree with Charles in deploring the separating-out of our elites. I share with him nostalgia for the homogenous, egalitarian America of our youth. That America, however, is dead as mutton. There's a new one a-borning, and it looks much more like Brazil than like Robert Heinlein's U.S.A.