From an interesting 50-minute discussion between Tucker Carlson and Ben Shapiro last month, while discussing common backgrounds in California, Carlson made the offhand comment, “We’re both elites”.
Well, as a matter of fact, they are. Only do they know what kind?….for there are several types of elites in a typical community; social, political, economic, even moral and educational.
And by whose appointment? That’s the question that separates America from all the organized societies and governments through history.
You see, unless a large group of people inside a particular society designates or commonly accepts one to be one its “elites” he or she really isn’t. The self-proclaimed “elite” is really an “elitist” which most people don’t want to go around bragging about, for it’s just a polite way of calling oneself a wannabe, and “Dig me, so you Come on down and buy whatever it is I’m selling.”
Are we seeing a lot of those days.
A free people creates its own elites. We’ve acquired our own land, started our own businesses, and written our own histories, most of them found in those county records and newspapers, still the preferred and most believed media in America.
That’s something else Americans could do Europeans couldn’t. In America the order of ranking elites is much less rigid than the rest of the world. Elitists hate that and call it populist. But that’s the lesson here. For while the rest of the world’s order of rank for its elites was more or less set into stone until the 19th Century, America changed the rules by imposing a kind of natural law of ranking and everyone just naturally went along with it. Virtually every county in America, every town, even village built on the last fork of the last creek that feeds the smallest river in the territory, has its founding elites, that sign coming into town memorializing them. And older streets remember other prominent citizens as well. One county in Kentucky even has a marker in front of the house owned by “the only man in Washington County to vote for Lincoln in 1860”.
You can see how discombobulated this made the Ancient World Order, and the whole idea of a hereditary privileged elite who owned everything and named everything.
In a humorous sidebar to this history is to note that there was no such thing as an “educated elite” until relatively recently. For one, the people who had owned all the land of Europe for a thousand years had no great need to be very educated, but they did have great need for competent factotums to keep their books, pay wages and bills. The same for lawyers since the lords were the Law, thus requiring little interpretation and almost no public debate, and probably subbed out to the kitchen staff during the “Tournament season”, (see below).
This was especially galling for university professors, until it finally came to head, possibly egged on in some part by Karl Marx, whose own personal beef with capitalists was not unlike the centuries-long beef universities had with the Nobility, over what was little more than a complaint about pay and r-e-s-p-e-c-t in a period when being educated and book smart had no real market value[…]