Saturday, August 13, 2016

The elite establishment and 'the great unwashed'

I've written several times this year (see, for example, here) about the political and economic establishment - which turns out to be the rich, in so many words.  Money is power;  power is money.  It's an old clichĂ©, but that doesn't make it any less true.

Now Peggy Noonan underlines that reality.

This is about distance, and detachment, and a kind of historic decoupling between the top and the bottom in the West that did not, in more moderate recent times, exist.

. . .

It is a theme I see working its way throughout the West’s power centers. At its heart it is not only a detachment from, but a lack of interest in, the lives of your countrymen, of those who are not at the table, and who understand that they’ve been abandoned by their leaders’ selfishness and mad virtue-signalling.

On Wall Street, where they used to make statesmen, they now barely make citizens. CEOs are consumed with short-term thinking, stock prices, quarterly profits. They don’t really believe that they have to be involved with “America” now; they see their job as thinking globally and meeting shareholder expectations.

In Silicon Valley the idea of “the national interest” is not much discussed. They adhere to higher, more abstract, more global values. They’re not about America, they’re about . . . well, I suppose they’d say the future.

In Hollywood the wealthy protect their own children from cultural decay, from the sick images they create for all the screens, but they don’t mind if poor, unparented children from broken-up families get those messages and, in the way of things, act on them down the road.

From what I’ve seen of those in power throughout business and politics now, the people of your country are not your countrymen, they’re aliens whose bizarre emotions you must attempt occasionally to anticipate and manage.

There's more at the link.

This is why you can get Chris Cuomo, a CNN reporter (and son of a prominent Democratic Party politician), saying baldly on the air, not caring how many people hear him, "We couldn’t help [Hillary Clinton] any more than we have, she’s got just a free ride so far from the media, we’re the biggest ones promoting her campaign..."  He literally didn't care who heard him, or whether they might care about much-ballyhooed 'objectivity' in journalism (currently visible more in the breach than in the observance).  He's part of the elite, the establishment.  The opinions of 'the great unwashed' are meaningless, as far as he's concerned.  Almost the entire mainstream news media appears to think likewise.

This is why you can get social media like Facebook, and Twitter, and the like, openly favoring one side of the political spectrum and censoring the other, even going so far as to silence those whose opinions differ too widely from their own.  It's the establishment protecting its favored sons and daughters, casting into outer darkness those who won't get with the program (like, for example, Milo Yiannopoulos).  They don't care whether people like you and I agree with their actions and attitudes or not.  We don't count.  We're not part of the 'inner circle'.

One hopes most sincerely that, this November, the US electorate will deliver a stinging rebuke to such supercilious condescension (known, in the language of common people like you and I, as 'bullshit').



bmq215 said...

I don't disagree with your main premise but it's probably smart to interject a little perspective on the Chris Cuomo comments. As in, this happened in 2014 when the potential democratic candidates were still little more than rumors. He was talking about the free pass Hillary got vs. other dem candidates, as opposed to vs. republicans. As such, the fact that he's the son of a prominent democratic politician doesn't point to him being unbiased but in fact does exactly the opposite. Cuomo was widely known to be considering a campaign at that point and from the sound of this Chris was annoyed that Hillary might be tying up donors who would otherwise rally behind his father.

JK Brown said...

I read yesterday, but can't find the link, an article that said Trumps supporters were those who knew someone who had been adversely impacted by the economy, etc. rather than just those who had been hit hard. It makes sense when you see the education/wealth the say the Trump supporters have.

It occurs to me this morning, that those people, those doing all right but concerned about others in their community are the backbone Middle Class. Those striving upper Middles in the tech centers are different.

And it is when this backbone, community concerned middle class get motivated that things can change dramatically. We shall see...

Peter said...

@bqm215: I fear you're missing the point. It doesn't matter when Chris Cuomo said it. The important thing is that he did say it, and that it does reflect his (and the establishment's) contempt for media objectivity.

Anonymous said...

These are the things of which civil wars are made. Bloody, destructive, horrific civil wars. I'm afraid the next civil war in the US is going to make the last one look like a church ladies aid committee garden party. I don't think anything can stop it at this point but this election in November is probably one of the last chances to at least postpone it. The future looks mighty bleak.

Anonymous said...

Ann Branhardt pointed out something that I had missed. Namely, you are 'elite' if you can break the laws or conventions, get caught, and have nothing happen to you.

I assured him that he was in fact correct, they DID want “to be caught”, but not for the reason he thought. He thought that they wanted to repent, to have the burden of their guilt lifted from them. Would that it were so. That would indicate even a flicker of psycho-spiritual normalcy. Sadly, the reality is exactly the opposite, and we see this today all around us, but most especially in the realm of politics, with Hillary Clinton being the most obvious example that comes to mind.

The hideous truth is that Diabolical Narcissists / sociopaths / psychopaths have no interest in repentance, reform or apologies. DNs define themselves by, and their entire warped psycho-spiritual existence revolves around, the notion that they are superior, a separate caste, distinct from and above other human beings. They are “the elite”. They are “oligarchs”. They are a “nouveau-aristocracy”. One of the main ways that this psycho-spiritual psychosis expresses itself is in terms of the law, and the Rule of Law.

Have you noticed that the further a government descends into tyranny and evil, the thicker and thicker the code of statutes becomes? On the surface, one would think that flagrant law-breakers in positions of power would tend toward anarchy, removing the “roadblocks” from the law that might jeopardize or imperil them as they pursue ever-increasing levels of power through criminal activity. This is exactly wrong. DNs, because they define themselves as “elite”, need a metric against which to measure and quantify their “eliteness”. That metric is The Law, specifically the extent to which The LAW DOES NOT APPLY TO THEM.

By that standard, our country is living in Marie Antoinette's "let them eat cake", time. And it has me wondering how long this will go on, before the "peasants" refuse to take it any longer.

-- Steve

Phil said...

There's a club and we aren't in it.

Anonymous said...

I guess "below the salt" is back.

- Charlie

0007 said...

To paraphrase one of Hollywood's larger characters, "Don't make me(us) angry; you won't like it when I(we) get angry."
And I 'spect "angry" is coming sooner rather than later.

LastRedoubt said...

Relevant Link to the NYT:

Headline: "He Likes Trump. She Doesn’t. Can This Marriage Be Saved?"

In early May, when Dr. Thomas Stossel told his wife, Dr. Kerry Maguire, of his plan to vote for Donald J. Trump in the general election, she hit him with an ultimatum.

“If you vote for Trump, I will divorce you and move to Canada,” she recalled telling him. He tried to laugh it off.

“I’m serious,” Dr. Maguire told him.

I am at a loss for words. That said, a quote later about 'how can anyone otherwise so reasonable/ intelligent actually support / believe that" is one I've heard a number of times.