Class Privilege.

The Corner’s Lisa Schiffren:

The doctors, lawyers, engineers, executives, serious small-business owners, top salespeople, and other professionals and entrepreneurs who make this country run work considerably harder than pretty much anyone else (including most of the chattering class, and all politicians). They are not robber barons, or trust-fund babies, or plutocrats, or even celebrities. They are mostly the meritocrats who worked hard in high school and got into the better colleges and grad schools, where they studied while others partied.


No group of people contribute more to their community. And now the president, who followed a path sort of like that, and who claims that his wife’s former six-figure income was a result of precisely such qualifications and efforts, is demonizing them. More problematically, he is penalizing their success and giving them very clear incentives to ratchet back on productivity.

It takes a stunning amount of class blindness to argue with a straight face that professionals “work harder” than janitors, day laborers and assorted service employees, and an equally large amount of delusion to believe that your hard work and “merit” are solely responsible for your success or advancement.  If this is what conservatives believe about success and hard work, then it’s no surprise that their movement is flailing; with views like these, it’s basically impossible to relate to average Americans.  You know, the guy who moves furniture for a living, or the woman who spends her days cleaning Lisa Schiffren’s floors.

5 thoughts on “Class Privilege.

  1. Big Word March 12, 2009 at 11:48 am Reply

    Yeah, people do make a lot of assumptions about you based on what you do for a living. The more money you make the better the assumptions about you and vice versa. For most peopel, it’s those kinds assumptions that make the most difference unfortunately.

  2. Kjen March 12, 2009 at 3:06 pm Reply

    I don’t know – I still think that it’s accepted philosophy that those who have money “worked hard” for it, and therefore those who don’t have money (or nearly as much) aren’t working as hard.

    The reason why this system/party/line of thought is flailing is because of the increasing number of people living in economic crisis or fear of economic crisis. If the majority of people were able to still scratch out a living, the party would be in better shape. So, I don’t feel any need to jump for joy at the seeming demise of the Republican party. It’s just part of the cycle, when people become hopeful and complacent again they’ll regain their footing.

  3. G.D. March 14, 2009 at 8:53 am Reply

    Aside: did you know Lisa Schiffren wrote the Dan Quayle speech in which he blasted Murphy Brown for being an unwed mother?

    • Winslowalrob March 14, 2009 at 12:31 pm Reply

      Lisa Schiffren is high class! And no, I did not know that…

  4. Big Word March 14, 2009 at 12:45 pm Reply

    I’d like to add that this post also shows just how much we don’t know about one another. IOWs how isolated people of different tax brackets continue to be from one another in this country. This despite the fact that their are way more opportunities and much more info available that enable people to connect. I’m pretty sure when yo break it down “janitors, day-laborers, and assorted service employees” produce more than they ever hope to get back and pay their fair share of taxes.

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