forbidding_archivist: The Terrible Trivium (Default)
There's this guy on LJ that I frankly despise. He calls himself a conservative, but he really isn't; he's just a nativist and one of the many who feel 'cheated' by the way life turned out for him. He's a white lower-to-middle class male, probably Protestant but not terribly devout. He feels he is constantly picked on by liberals and Democrats and centrists and they are "out to destroy America". He has frankly commented on how liberals should be dragged out in the street and shot for treason. And don't get him started on Obama.

But if anything, his invective and ire is currently even more focused on Republicans and conservatives in general. When the Tea Party came to the fore, he denied being a Partier but in the same breath relentlessly advocated for them. When the election came, he was gravely disappointed and is now angrier than before. And who is he angry at?

He's angry at establishment Republicans. Y'know, the majority of the party. He gets angrier and angrier every day on the subject, to where he now refers to them solely as "ruling class Republican neo-monarchists"

Why does this make me laugh my ass off?
Because, really, other conservatives (like myself) have been telling this guy for years, "You are not the establishment. You are not someone who Republican leaders will pay attention to. Yes, there IS a ruling class and It Ain't You."

The American Spectator put this guy's anger (We'll call him M.) very succinctly back in July:

Never has there been so little diversity within America's upper crust. Always, in America as elsewhere, some people have been wealthier and more powerful than others. But until our own time America's upper crust was a mixture of people who had gained prominence in a variety of ways, who drew their money and status from different sources and were not predictably of one mind on any given matter. The Boston Brahmins, the New York financiers, the land barons of California, Texas, and Florida, the industrialists of Pittsburgh, the Southern aristocracy, and the hardscrabble politicians who made it big in Chicago or Memphis had little contact with one another. Few had much contact with government, and "bureaucrat" was a dirty word for all. So was "social engineering." Nor had the schools and universities that formed yesterday's upper crust imposed a single orthodoxy about the origins of man, about American history, and about how America should be governed. All that has changed.

Today's ruling class, from Boston to San Diego, was formed by an educational system that exposed them to the same ideas and gave them remarkably uniform guidance, as well as tastes and habits. These amount to a social canon of judgments about good and evil, complete with secular sacred history, sins (against minorities and the environment), and saints. Using the right words and avoiding the wrong ones when referring to such matters -- speaking the "in" language -- serves as a badge of identity. Regardless of what business or profession they are in, their road up included government channels and government money because, as government has grown, its boundary with the rest of American life has become indistinct. Many began their careers in government and leveraged their way into the private sector. Some, e.g., Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner, never held a non-government job. Hence whether formally in government, out of it, or halfway, America's ruling class speaks the language and has the tastes, habits, and tools of bureaucrats. It rules uneasily over the majority of Americans not oriented to government.


Well, no shit, Sherlock. In the first place, American aristocracy has pretty much been mostly based on wealth of some type, with few exceptions. In the beginning, it WAS diverse and unconnected. What M (and the American Spectator) seem to have never figured out is that if you have an aristocracy of any type, be it noble, wealth, or talent, the suckers will eventually intermarry and form a singular aristocracy. There won't be any more divisions between Boston Brahmins and California land barons, between Southern gentry and Midwest politicians. It's all the same thing. It takes some generations to do so, but by this time, by the 21st century, all that shit is complete.

And people like M and others dissatisfied with their lot in life have been left out. Tossed. By the wayside. Even though they resemble the ruling class in looks and form, even in technology, they're not part of it. They're not super-rich. They're not groomed at private schools. They don't have "ins" and connections to plum corporations and government agencies. This pisses them off; this makes them angry. They think it should be their birthright or even available to them and they're p.o.ed that all the doors are closed.

What they fail to understand is that this ALWAYS happens when you finally have an established and stable nation-society. And aristocracy, literal or virtual, always establishes itself. It is humanity's nature to form hierarchies. It is the nature of those who rule to make sure they continue to rule. M doesn't understand this or refuses to accept this; the result is the same.

Even worse for him and his ilk, it truly doesn't matter if his Tea Party wins or not. Even if the Tea Partiers won and returned things "back to a Constitutional government", they would just be making sure they sat in the ruling seat in the future. Oh, sure, a few ideologues would adhere to their principles - but it wouldn't be enough. Within 3-4 generations, it would be the Tea Partiers' descendants going "Oh, these plebeian American citizens, they just don't have the capacity to understand our superior political thinking. Pass the caviar and arrange for us to be conveyed to our winter home in Florida." Today's O'Donnells and Palins would be tomorrow's Bushes and Rockefellers. See the Soviet Union for a modern-day example of that.

Now some would say, "Well, Jefferson was right, then! The tree of liberty needs to be regularly refreshed with the blood of patriots!" Some would advocate that, to prevent such an aristocracy from forming, that we would need a revolution of some sort every generation or so.

Sorry, it's been tried too. See Mao for a modern-day example. His ongoing revolution left him and his ideas to be totally shit-canned after his death and to go straight back to developing an imperial system. China is communist now in name only; they run more like Imperial China during an interregnum than anything else. Also, revolutions are BLOODY. Very few outside the fanatics and ideologues want to get their hands dirty.

So I laugh at M and on some level I feel sorry for him. It used to be that people like him would pick up and go to the frontier, but there's no frontier on Earth anymore and no existing other frontiers that can be managed. So instead he will rot and stew, impotent in his own anger.

But it still makes me laugh. That's schadenfreude for you.

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forbidding_archivist: The Terrible Trivium (Default)
The Forbidding Archivist

November 2011

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