A colleague and I were recently talking about the nature of the modern American aristocracy - not an aristocracy of blood, refinement, family, or breeding but one of power, influence, money or access to it, and networks, combined with a dose of meritocracy and slick social climbing.
Unfortunately, due to the ever-growing power of the Federal government, the modern aristocracy is beginning to resemble a Washington-NYC version that of the London-based aristocracy (and that aristocracy was not stupid at all - consider Lord North) against which we rebelled.
For better or worse (for worse, IMO - but they are my people) in America, ye olde WASP dominance is history. But that is the American Way. Few know much about history today. We like "New."
Harvard's Greg Mankiw addresses the Yale-Harvard Presidential Duopoly.