We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Friday, December 3. 2010
Barone asks that question:
Does this mean that, if I wish to be respected by the elites, I should switch sides?
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You should also begin bathing in blood just to get the feel for it. Thomas Sowell's book, Intellectuals and Society is a good place to start and he notes:
"[I]t is hard to escape the conclusion that intellectuals have on balance made the world a worse and more dangerous place. Scarcely a mass-murdering dictator of the 20Th century was without his supporters, admirers, or apologists among the leading intellectuals — not only within his own country, but in foreign democracies, where intellectuals were free to say whatever they wanted.
Given the enormous progress made during the 20Th century, it may seem hard to believe that intellectuals did so little good as to have that good outweighed by their wrong-headed notions. But most of those who promoted the scientific, economic, and social advances of the 20Th century were not really intellectuals in the sense in which that term is most often used.
The Wright brothers, who fulfilled the centuries-old dream of human beings flying, were by no means intellectuals. Nor were those who conquered the scourge of polio and other diseases, or who created the electronic marvels that we now take for granted.
All these people produced a tangible product or service and they were judged by whether those products and services worked. But intellectuals are people whose end products are intangible ideas, and they are usually judged by whether those ideas sound good to other intellectuals or resonate with the public. Whether their ideas turn out to work — whether they make life better or worse for others — is another question entirely."
In order to understand the dynamics which motivate intellectuals erroneous beliefs see Eric Hoffer, The True Believer.
The problem with the "educated class" is they tend not to be too bright, since their "education" generally just teaches them to parrot propaganda, not to think for themselves. I've noticed a lot of them also seem to be seriously lacking in common sense.
What you're observing is the difference between credentials and ability. In the past, colleges attempted to weed out those without ability before granting credentials. It was an imperfect process at best. Often people with ability were weeded out and people with little more ability than repeating rote learning would be granted credentials. Still, this was far better than the apparent contemporary practice to grant credentials to anyone who will sit through four or five years of classes without regard to ability or achievement. While Resident Obama may have the credentials, he is ill-educated and too obtuse to realize his ignorance. So too are many of the self-styled "educated" class. I've known truly educated people in my younger days. I cannot say I've met anyone remotely their equal in today's "educated" class.
Which "educated class" do you mean, News Junkie?
What I have observed in our society since the Resident was elected confirms many of my own prejudices about our so-called "educated classes."`. I was born in the Middle West [Chicago, as a matter of fact] to two parents whose ancestral roots were from the East Coast. Because of this, I was sent to the East for my college education. What a revelation that was! Many of the folks I met in college assumed that I was a] ill-educated, b] unsophisticated, a hick from a vast desert of simple folks, and c]incapable of independent thought and decision. All wrong, by the way. I survived, but grew to dislike the ingrained snobbery of the privileged elites on campus that carelessly assumed so many false things. But outside of the campus, I found many delightful people, like those here at Maggies, who had deep roots in the older states, who loved the land and delighted in the people it nurtured. New England particularly charmed me, because of its sturdy people up and down the economic scale who had so much basic good sense and stubborn determination to be and remain independent.
I found many of these same characteristics here in the people of Texas. Texans yearn to build their own fortunes and most are greatly successful. Many Northerners don't understand Texans, or indeed most Southerners. In my forty years of living here, I have learned to love and respect Southern courtesy, courage, restless urge to achieve, and willingness to accept strangers who might become friends.
So ... does the GOP need the "Educated class?" Which one are we talking about? The vast group of grown-up responsible folks who spontaneously began to rebel against "the establishment" and organized themselves into Tea Party groups, to go to Washington and express peaceably their anger and disgust at the direction in which our country was being led? These folks were mostly well educated scholastically and practically, and unusually thoughtful and attentive to the changes in our beloved country.
It distresses me that we Americans have become so diverse so quickly that we have failed to rejoice in the wonderful courage and sweetness of our native born Americans, some of whose roots reach back to before the United States was a country. And they are all around us. I'd say that the GOP needs all the educated folks with real world experience and achievements that they can find. The GOP can find these folks, if they will listen to them and respect them for their real world knowledge and achievements.
As for 'les autres' to use a snobby French expression ... the heck with them!
Yes, Marianne! "Les autres" are not required, As General Schwarzkopf said, "Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without your accordion." We can do without the elites as well.
The Thaler and Sunstein book, "Nudge" spells out why the totalitarian elite demographic isn't required in the Republican party. They simply hate us. We, the vulgar ugly, are inferior beings to be manipulated and used by the gifted-enlightened to bring about their pipe-dream utopia.
These arrogant twits will never change because they know the way, and belief forever trumps reason. We should be grateful, for in their magnificence, they are willing to show us the way as well. Sadly, Collins, Snowe, Graham, McCain and others are willing--and waiting.
Some decades ago, I had the itch and a bit of determination, resulting in getting my very own terminal degree. Since then I've had the opportunity to work with and observe a decent slice of 'intellectuals'. Most of them I would not trust to walk my dog, much less do anything that would substantially affect human beings.
Having 'ideas' is no big deal. The key is having ideas whose merit is proven by empirical data and experience gathered in the real world. As several comments suggest here, our 'intellectuals' do not deign to be bothered by real-world applicability.
As Thomas Sowell observes, behind every blood-thirsty tyrant is a crew of 'intellectuals' who provide inspiration for the onset of the carnage, homage and cover while the corpses are manufactured, and excuses at the terminus.