Jim Sleeper writes here about Yale University’s intention to name a building in honor of Steven Schwarzman, to acknowledge his gift of $150 million.

When Yale announced a $150 million donation from alumnus and plutocrat Stephen Schwarzman last year to convert its historic Commons and Memorial Hall into the “state of the art” Stephen A. Schwarzman Student Center, an undergraduate, Nathan Kohrman, penned a deft summary of the man’s arrogant blundering through the American public sphere that the college has long cherished and nourished:

“What about Schwarzman —other than his estimated $10 billion fortune — does Yale find appealing? Surely not his belief, as of October 2015, that Donald Trump’s ‘political incorrectness’ makes him ‘good for democracy.’ Surely not his 2011 suggestion to raise taxes on the working poor because ‘skin in the game’ might make them work harder. Surely not his view that a 2010 bipartisan effort to close a private equity tax loophole — from which Schwarzman personally profits — was ‘like when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939.’ Surely it is not his prominence at the Koch brothers’ donor summits, where he’s donated undisclosed millions to political organizations that have cannibalized the GOP establishment and paralyzed the Obama administration.”

Kohrman’s remonstrance received only passing attention, but it merits urgent re-reading and distribution now that Schwarzman is chairing President Trump’s business advisory council. Fellow billionaire Michael Moritz’s characterization of him last week in The New York Times as one of Trump’s “Goodfellas” is only one of the reasons.

Schwarzman’s personal piggishness aside, the very premises, protocols, and practices through which he’s accumulated his $10 billion personal fortune and more than $360 billion for his private-equity Blackstone Group do far more damage to our economy, society and republic than he and other private-equity adventurers and hedge-fund heroes can ever repair through self-cleansing, self-celebrating philanthropy.

Sleeper says that major institutions should not name buildings for living figures. A good idea. But apparently Schwarzman’s gifts depend on the naming rights. When he gave $100 million to the New York Public Library, he insisted that its main building be renamed for him and that his name be engraved prominently on the building’s facade.

This is what happens when a society doesn’t support its cultural treasures. But what is Yale’s excuse?