It’s Sunday morning and I’ve just made coffee and sat down. What better way to wake up than to read Ross Douthat’s column for, today, April 7, 2013 titled The Secrets of Princeton? Mr. D. has his secret decoder ring that his granddad gave him, it still works!
It’s really hard to think of Mr. D. as some sort of populist, all that suave Catholic Conservatism in a lather over, well here’s a quotation illustrative of his mood:
“Every elite seeks its own perpetuation, of course, but that project is uniquely difficult in a society that’s formally democratic and egalitarian and colorblind. And it’s even more difficult for an elite that prides itself on its progressive politics, its social conscience, its enlightened distance from hierarchies of blood and birth and breeding.”
Well, the beginning of this saga is one Susan Patton who gives dating advice to upper crust woman about using their time at ‘elite universities’ to find that well heeled ‘perfect mate’. Because ,of course, it’s impossible not to think of women as only dependent on men for their life’s fulfillment. The Career Woman, celebrated and dammed in so many Hollywood films as to be archetypal (Ginger Rogers, Lady in the Dark, 1944), is an enemy of long standing in the Conservative Pantheon. Which century is Mr. D. living in? You know, the 19th! But what is surprising is that this has the distinct aroma of kind of potted Marxism, well sort of. Maybe Mr. D. is just flirting?
Mr. D.’s vocabulary is awash in words like: meritocracy, upper class, elite, egalitarian, hierarchies, that perennial troika: blood, birth, breeding, Ivy League, Social Capital, Multicultural, and that old standby noblesse oblige. It’s all in the way that he stirs all this shit up, that makes the difference.
The mention of discrimination in Asian and working class whites in admissions to ‘elite universities’ is a fitting demonstration of Mr. D.’s concern, indeed, commitment to equality? I’ve had my coffee and my dose of Conservative Reality heavily lace with the manufactured indignation. My perfect Sunday morning!
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