Having been accused of being elitist by one of our readers Ww took the Margaret Wente Do you belong to an Elite Quiz. We only scored +20 which isn’t isn’t very high on the elitist ladder. Had we lived in Toronto and answered the Rob Ford question we would have scored an even zero! But this test of Margaret’s is really made for Ontario, even Toronto folk. We’ve come up with our own Wolfville version.
You buy your coffee at: Just Us or Tans +20 Tims -20
Your degree is from: W. of NB or outside Canada +20 Atlantic Provinces -20 Who needs a degree?-40
You children have degrees from : West of NB +20 Atlantic Provinces -20 No degrees -40
You like Anna Maria Tremonti +20 Who? -20
You wouldn’t be caught dead watching Dr Phil +20 Love Dr. Phil -20
You avoid shopping at Walmart +20 Walmart prices rock -20
You are invited to the mayor’s parties +40 He crosses the street when he sees you coming -40
You think Michael Moore, Al Gore and David Suzuki movies are documentaries +20 LOL -20
As Margaret points out:
“…despite all our self-congratulation about diversity, we live in a highly self-segregated society. The elites don’t live and work with everybody else. They live and work with each other. The result is that the Elites tend to have only a dim idea of how most ordinary folks live. …The second problem, as Mr. Murray pointed out, is that the new elite class is largely self-perpetuating. … Why do non-elites resent elites? Because they think the elites don’t understand them and don’t respect them. They can be right about that. They also tend to resent the elites of the liberal, nanny-statish variety who insist that they know better than the unwashed masses. This is the mentality of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, which voted to ban free toys with Happy Meals as a way of limiting childhood obesity.
Wente suggests in her piece that we are becoming a nation of intellectuals. Thomas Solwell called this “a chilling thought”. He warns us about intellectual elites whose products are only ideas, ideas which are untested by experience but which permeate and shape society These groups (adademia, media for e.g.) consider themselves the smarter class. They think they know better than the less intellectual, business, or producing classes, and therefore feel they have the right to lead us, to tell the rest of us what to to, and how to do it, by persuasion or legislation if necessary using government as its tool. As Solwell points out they are often very mistaken but can avoid the consequences of the failure of their ideas. It is often the intellectual class that has led us to disaster or the brink of disaster because their ideas have been faulty. The mundane, diffuse, consequential knowledge of the multitude of ordinary people doing what makes sense to them individually trumps that of the intelligentsia more often than not. That is why the market works when central planning even by the smartest people could not.
The culture chasm between the elites and non-elites is politically significant….
The most important decision is who makes the decisions.