Six-term senator, man of the people and wizened child Chuck Grassley
Elitists: they’re everywhere, according to people whose words and ideas are broadcast to millions. Obama was an elitist for saying every American should go to college. Donald Trump supporter Jeffrey Lord told CNN that fact-checking is elitist. Elitism seems concentrated in the journalistic class, particularly when politicians identify it. Just this morning, Senator Chuck Grassley (R–IA) posed this question to his Twitter followers:
You can tell Grassley is a man of the people because he uses chatspeak abbreviations. Journalists are too elite for him, an ordinary American who has served in the Senate for 30 years. But his tweet raises some questions.
A New Yorker cartoon by Barbara Smaller, owned by Conde Nast
Halfway through this interview with Salon, critic of the Ivy League (and Ivy-League critic) Michael Deresiewicz discusses the way that our ostensibly meritocratic college admissions system serves to “launder privilege”:
Instead of saying, “You get to go because you’re born,” which is obviously unfair, we say, “You get to go because you have really great scores and grades and you’ve done a million extracurricular activities.” But the only way to get to that point is if you have rich parents. I mean, again, there are exceptions, but there are not a lot of exceptions.
Approximately 35,000 kids apply to Harvard each year, and 2,000 get in. When I was an SAT tutor, more kids submitted perfect scores to Yale than there were total admissions slots. As selective colleges become more selective, admissions become an arms race of adolescent achievement—one that demands more money than lower- and even middle-income families can afford. But we are invested in believing this system rewards merit, because the Ivies and so-called junior Ivies produce so many of our leaders.
Good morning, dicks!
Clearly god exists, because Rick Santorum is the front-runner for the Republican nomination. He’ll do really well in the general, too, except for with women, homosexuals, hispanics, people on public assistance, recipients of student loans, libertarians and atheists. But he’s got the white male Christian high school graduate vote sewed up. If you draw a Venn diagram of all the bias groups in the United States—straight, Christian, male, dumb—the region where they overlap is the Santorum constituency. It’s a group that defines itself by what it is not, and the word for what it is not is elite. Santorum gave us a usage example yesterday, when he described the Obama administration to his audience at a campaign rally:
They don’t believe that you can make these decisions. They need to make these decisions for you…Don’t you see how they see you? How they look down their nose at the average American. These elite snobs.
Props to Ben al-Fowlkes for the link.