Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Affirmative Action for Rich People

Somehow, the horrible injustice of "affirmative action" seems downright natural when it works in favor of the privileged. When top schools give admissions preference to children of segregation-era alums, few question the practice. When children are groomed for management of the family business, that is called succession planning, not an offense to meritocracy.

And when a teacher is given a regular slot on the "Today Show", it's because she's the best possible choice for the position.


Blogger m.v. said...

at least they didn't try to make her a senator like Caroline Kennedy

9/01/2009 9:41 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

MV - Well stated. This is certainly a bias that cuts across party lines.

9/01/2009 10:29 AM  
Blogger les said...

We're getting to look like an aristocracy; not just politics but business and, to a huge extent, Washington media/punditry. The number of unqualified legacies appearing in newspapers and tv is incredible, and they get immense deference for having the right bloodline.

9/01/2009 2:42 PM  
Blogger les said...

Seen on the intertubes:

They should convene a panel for the next Meet the Press with Jenna Bush Hager, Luke Russert, Liz Cheney, Megan McCain and Jonah Goldberg, and they should have Chris Wallace moderate it. They can all bash affirmative action and talk about how vitally important it is that the U.S. remain a Great Meritocracy because it's really unfair for anything other than merit to determine position and employment. They can interview Lisa Murkowski, Evan Bayh, Jeb Bush, Bob Casey, Mark Pryor, Jay Rockefeller, Dan Lipinksi, and Harold Ford, Jr. about personal responsibility and the virtues of self-sufficiency. Bill Kristol, Tucker Carlson and John Podhoretz can provide moving commentary on how America is so special because all that matters is merit, not who you know or where you come from.

9/01/2009 5:35 PM  
Anonymous Rhymes With Right said...

Yeah, what was Jenna thinking? It isn't like her last name is Kennedy, Shriver, Brzynski or Clinton! And to think that she settled for a position that won't earn her a hefty six-figure salary with no experience -- positively downgrading that privilege the is benefiting from.

And it's not like she is a published author with a best-seller to her credit or anything.

9/01/2009 6:36 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

RWR - A little defensive, aren't you? As MV pointed out, and I agreed, the bias for aristocrats cuts across party lines. And I'm not claiming she's not a good person - indeed, I suspect she's at least better than Evan Bayh.

But, let's be honest - if her father were anybody else, she wouuldn't be a published author.

9/01/2009 9:05 PM  
Anonymous Rhymes With Right said...

Perhaps, Dan, but you miss a bigger point when you look at this issue.

A plain reading of the Constitution and laws of the US show that they forbid the parceling benefits and burdens based upon race. No such prohibition exists in regard to family connections.

9/02/2009 7:41 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

RWR - If you're okay with an aristocracy having advantages based upon birth, you're welcome to your monarchy. I personally oppose such a system, whether it is benefiting Jenna Bush Hager or Jesse Jackson, Jr.. My point is that affirmative action in hiring or admissions is traditionally and unquestioningly used to support the spawn of the upper class, but draws hoots of derision only when it benefits the lower class.

I agree with you that the Today Show should be prosecuted for hiring someone based upon the fact that she comes from an upper class historically restricted to Caucasians, but I don't join in your expectation that the remedy is going to be accomplished by legal action.

9/02/2009 8:27 PM  

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