Cowen's book is not a serious attempt to engage life's serious issues but rather he acts as a sock puppet for his billionaire master -Charles Koch. His thinking barely rises above Ann Coulter's insights.
First, these guys said there was no intergenerational wealth mobility problem. Then they said it wasn't significant. Now they say nothing can be done (cost are to high etc). These guys aren't social scientists; they are Insurance Claim Processors (re:anti-tax lobbyists for the rich).
Like Coulter, Limbaugh, and Beck, they sell their wares to a narrow minded echo chamber, that doesn't want to be confused with facts and lives in a world that has the nuance of Tolkien's' middle earth (a world where successful people worked hard and deserve their lot in life and those that didn't achieve just make excuses). Adults can't be given a free pass for this type of thinking/speech that has to be labelled as either intellectually lazy or dishonest - pick one.
Either way scorn and contempt seem like appropriate responses to their offerings.