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Joined Nov 10, 2007
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NY Times Columnist David Brooks Under Fire For Belittling the Plebs in Article

This shit is really funny.

In an article published today, NY Times columnist, and damned good writer, David Brooks, actually published this.

It’s no wonder that 70 percent of the students in the nation’s 200 most competitive schools come from the top quarter of the income distribution. With their admissions criteria, America’s elite colleges sit atop gigantic mountains of privilege, and then with their scholarship policies they salve their consciences by offering teeny step ladders for everybody else.

I was braced by Reeves’s book, but after speaking with him a few times about it, I’ve come to think the structural barriers he emphasizes are less important than the informal social barriers that segregate the lower 80 percent.

Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to lunch. Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop. Suddenly I saw her face freeze up as she was confronted with sandwiches named “Padrino” and “Pomodoro” and ingredients like soppressata, capicollo and a striata baguette. I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we ate Mexican.

American upper-middle-class culture (where the opportunities are) is now laced with cultural signifiers that are completely illegible unless you happen to have grown up in this class. They play on the normal human fear of humiliation and exclusion. Their chief message is, “You are not welcome here.”

Fucking high school rubes. Why don’t you know the names of Italian meats? My grandfather only graduated junior high school and knew all of those meats. He was, however, Italian and spoke the language fluently.

David’s main point was lost in his unintentionally hilarious sandwich sidebar. The class structure in America has never been more divided. There is a lurid form of eugenics taking place in plain sight. The very brightest are corralled into a select few universities. More often than not, the students attending those universities come from affluent families, who had the resources to send their children to private schools. Public schools in America are complete shit. Anyone with kids knows it.

Then, these nice people at Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Stanford cavort with one another, establish friendships, marry, spit out a few kids. The offsprings are raised in a similar fashion and the American aristocracy expands, uninterrupted.

The offsprings of the plumbers and electricians travel a different narrative. Every once in a while an outlier emerges and accomplishes great things — a regular rags to riches story — providing the plebian class an inspirational story. Some of these tales are woven into Hollywood films, or documentaries, so that others might aspire to replicate the aforementioned success. It’s almost akin to striking the lottery or being struck by lightening.

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16 comments

  1. metalleg

    If you can’t belittle the plebs, who can you belittle?

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  2. mensch

    Plain sight. It’s happening in plain sight.

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  3. sarcrilege

    Why is society divided? Could it be because of intentional and deliberate social engineering to destroy nation state, community, race, culture, gender, religion and family so the plebs could be easily controlled by the usual synagogue suspects that want global government to rule over mongrels that have nothing in common except poverty and misery?

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    • Cricket

      Nah. Too much education – we were smarter when we graduated from one room schoolhouses.

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    • duuude

      Because Nature.

      The strong devour the weak.

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  4. ferd

    Nah, David’s main point is that he’s a sensitive and caring guy who has a friend with “only” high school and he cares about “the lower 80%” and that he is willing to dumb things down so that ‘they’ can have lunch.

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  5. skulduggery

    If I sensed my friend in distress, without letting them know I noticed, I would name my three favorite sandwiches and one she may like, or I would pretend I didn’t know the names and ask the waiter to go through them so she could hear. But then I’m not a prick.

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    • ferd

      Well said Also, you wouldn’t have been such a prick that you USED her in a fucking article in order to show yourself as a great and caring guy.

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  6. skalliwag

    Is every Ivy League grad an expert in Italian deli meats? They did not teach this at my school.

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    • john_galt

      Glad to see that she can understand some Spanish though

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  7. moneybagz

    WE NEED A PURGE, pronto.

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  8. traderconfessions
    traderconfessions

    It is convenient that all of the dumb people naturally congregate in the Red States. Then the Deep State feeds them Mountain Dew and McDonald’s so they become too obese to leave. Mitch McConnell is diabolical genius!

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  9. joyous__ending

    Brooks just proved he is an ultra Yankee elitist AND racist.
    Just like saying black kids are too dumb to appreciate good art, unless their parents teach them so.

    Brooks needs to write that donation to his favorite minority college fund so the kids from the south side can learn about gourmet foods when they visit for dinner at the home of their college dorm-mates.

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  10. bennyhill

    Disagree, these days unlike a few decades ago, a degree from an above average state university can get you as far as an Ivy degree. We hire from MIT and also UMASS and the hires are on par with each other.

    Private elementary and high school is a waste of money, every study ever done has shown it makes no different in terms or outcomes later in life. The only trait of a child that correlates with success is the socioeconomic status of the family, regardless of where they go to school.

    Then again this is Massachusetts, best public school in the country.

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