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Liberal crony culture

Stop me before I vote again sounds like they'd enjoy a late night drinking session with Bob Somerby:

The conservative crony culture plays the game better, however, and in response the liberal crony culture has adopted the business model, used advisedly, of attempting to manage the race to the bottom.

That works well for them electorally when, and only when, the crony culture of the conservatives guides the race to the bottom at pace too fast and too frightening for the people whose business model is the power-tie Stakhanovite's extraction of rents. Politically, win or lose in elections, the liberal crony culture prospers. They're indispensable. Although for how much longer is an interesting question.

What makes the liberal crony culture so much more contemptible, which takes some effort with the conservatives as competition, is that they have a vague inkling that somehow, in some strange way, they've handed power to the conservatives.

And that's why it's funny when Glenn Beck targets Cass Sunstein.

Of course, Glenn Beck's never going to make it to the Supreme Court. Cass Sunstein might.

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okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

"Meritocracy and narrow proceduralism inevitably produce a crony culture which has, as its "philosophy", the preservation of what the highest status members consider the conditions that made them high status. Hey, it worked, right? They are where they are, after all, and people just like them are too."

So you know that when Gail Collins, Dowd, Rich, Robert Scheer, Margaret Calrson, Olbermann, Mathews, etc., and those who hired and promoted them discuss an indivdual's virtues (or lack of), it is based on the premise of whether promoting or de-moting that individual reinforces the systemic "meritocracy" which granted these clowns their positions.

Also, since none of these people could be remotely confused as having any great intellect, obviously that is not a either a requirement or even desireable attribute. So what is? Kick down, kiss up. That one is obvious. "Dismiss the Cracker", also required. Again, don't be too smart, you might embarrass the C-minus in-crowd. Also, well-defined gender roles are strictly enforced. Well, almost always. No matter what, superficiality is king, but what do you expect? That's a feature, not a bug.

Anyway.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

... a *very* important concept.

I disagree with the meritocracy comment. Liberals don't really have a true meritocracy. Part of this has to deal with the fact that poor, capable folks need to actually, you know, work to pay their way through school rather than taking unpaid internships. This selects for a narrow class of people.

I worked a lot trying to get young people involved in the political process so I've seen people come and go and get entrenched in the Village. The brightest, most capable people aren't always the ones who can land the connections necessary to get into the Village. The best and the brightest aren't always the ones willing to play the game either. Of course, when they do play the game, its not always pretty.

I would like to see us turn our political culture into a real meritocracy rather than the high school Homecoming King/Queen performances we now have. Sadly, I think Obama's campaign strongly solidified the high school political culture in our country. I'm hoping there is some hope left in the states.....

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

The way I read it, "meritocracy" was meant ironically. Exactly as you say, having enough personal wealth and connections that you can land and keep non-paying, high-profile positions makes you more "meritorious" over those who can't afford that luxury.

The point is that since Reagan (and the war against affirmative action, as well as the ERA (remember that?)), "meritocracy" has been the sacred cow, adored and worshiped by all. But since Moran s control our culture (and politics), and set the rules of what defines "merit", our "elites" have created a system which promotes Moran s. Rich, glib, superficial and sanctimonious Moran s.

Submitted by gob on

- if Wikipedia is correct - was coined as an ironic term in the first place. I first became aware of it through Michael Young's marvelous book. Young himself wrote, in his introduction:

The argument of the book is that if the soil creates castes the machine manufactures classes--classes to which people can be assigned by their achievement rather than ascribed by their birth. Insofar as this has happened, social inequality can be justified, and, to avoid too blatant a contradiction, such a justification is almost always needed in a democratic society....

A greatly entertaining and instructive book!