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Thread: NYT: Brooks: The Pathologies of the Educated Class

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    NYT: Brooks: The Pathologies of the Educated Class

    So this was the latest NYT OpEd piece that attracted my attention this morning, at 4:30am when I got up to work on a report deadline and I wanted so badly to submit a comment but I didn't want to waste brain cells on that vs my task at hand.

    Incidentally, the headline was changed at some point to "The Sins of the Educated Class"

    I felt Brooks wrote an excellent piece on the whole social justice outrage by the "privileged" class of the elite progressives. He heavily referenced a new book coming out called "We Never Have Been Woke" by Musa al-Gharbi. Even as a a person who drives a Prius replete with Bernie bumper stickers, I actually found a lot of sense in what he was saying. But the comments--wow! The piece garnered 1.8k comments--and I would say that for every 1 that liked the piece, 2 blasted Brooks.

    If any of you guys subscribe to the NYT or can get around the paywall, I'd love to see what you think.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2024/06/06/o...versities.html
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    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    I enjoyed this piece as well.

    (And often, open-in-incognito-browser-window gets you past the NYT paywall)

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    I'm sorry, even with incognito browsing I can't get past the paywall.

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    Since Brooks is syndicated, you can find his column at other papers. I read it at the Sierra Vista Herald.

    I think it made a lot of sense. Elites whose status depends on their opinions will tend to compete for scarce jobs on the basis of “luxury beliefs”. This may explain the erosion of support for the Democrats among working class people of all colors more interested in practical survival than racial reductionism. It also helps explain the rise of Trump’s politics of resentment against preaching elites.

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    Not sure how to put into words this but this opinion piece like so many these days stereotypes a group into one belief. I am certain there are many students at "elite" universities who steer clear of this mindset but they are cast into the same bowl based on their educational choices.

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    Senior Member flowerseverywhere's Avatar
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    I liked the article. I don’t like it painting a broad brush (ie. anyone who votes for trump is a nazi, any one who votes for Biden wants wide open uncontrolled borders) type of narrative. Neither of these things are close to true and the same rules apply to the educated elite.

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    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    Interesting article, but I think the title, "Sins of the Educated Class" is misleading. As a matter of fact I think the title could/should include words like the coastal elite. There are plenty of educated people who don't attend places like Harvard, Princeton or Stanford. Here in the middle of the continent those places are are vague references to many of us. I know of people in my HS graduating class who became nuclear physicists, heart surgeons, and renowned artists who attended other more regional schools and I know of no one who went to the elite five or ten. Not that they are fine schools but I think Broods is looking at colleges or universities through his coastal NYT glasses and forgetting about the majority of higher learning institutions.
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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    I liked what he said about the overproduction of elites and their malaise if they don’t achieve high status in high-paying fields. I agree that in some sectors and for some populations, their ferocious fight for ownership of the “right” ideas isn’t doing our society any favors.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkytoe View Post
    Not sure how to put into words this but this opinion piece like so many these days stereotypes a group into one belief. I am certain there are many students at "elite" universities who steer clear of this mindset but they are cast into the same bowl based on their educational choices.
    I think that’s true. Even at the double handful of prestige schools Brooks is talking about, probably most of the students are more interested in identifying as investment bankers, management consultants or engineers than as any number of victim or revolutionary tropes.

    The real crazed contagion seems to be concentrated in media, education and other chattering class institutions. That’s where we see the New York Times assigning four reporters to watch flagpoles or University presidents negotiating with vandals.

    In fields that lack objective measures of performance like return on investment or mean time between failure, people seem to be competing based on their commitment to the fashionable orthodoxy, no matter how ridiculous.

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