April 6, 2013

Douthat: "Secrets of Princeton"

Ross Douthat writes in the NYT:
The Secrets of Princeton 
By ROSS DOUTHAT 
SUSAN PATTON, the Princeton alumna who became famous for her letter urging Ivy League women to use their college years to find a mate, has been denounced as a traitor to feminism, to coeducation, to the university ideal. But really she’s something much more interesting: a traitor to her class. 
Her betrayal consists of being gauche enough to acknowledge publicly a truth that everyone who’s come up through Ivy League culture knows intuitively — that elite universities are about connecting more than learning, that the social world matters far more than the classroom to undergraduates, and that rather than an escalator elevating the best and brightest from every walk of life, the meritocracy as we know it mostly works to perpetuate the existing upper class. 
Every elite seeks its own perpetuation, of course, but that project is uniquely difficult in a society that’s formally democratic and egalitarian and colorblind. 
And it’s even more difficult for an elite that prides itself on its progressive politics, its social conscience, its enlightened distance from hierarchies of blood and birth and breeding. 
Thus the importance, in the modern meritocratic culture, of the unacknowledged mechanisms that preserve privilege, reward the inside game, and ensure that the advantages enjoyed in one generation can be passed safely onward to the next. 
The intermarriage of elite collegians is only one of these mechanisms — but it’s an enormously important one. The outraged reaction to her comments notwithstanding, Patton wasn’t telling Princetonians anything they didn’t already understand. Of course Ivy League schools double as dating services. Of course members of elites — yes, gender egalitarians, the males as well as the females — have strong incentives to marry one another, or at the very least find a spouse from within the wider meritocratic circle. What better way to double down on our pre-existing advantages? What better way to minimize, in our descendants, the chances of the dread phenomenon known as “regression to the mean”? 
That this “assortative mating,” in which the best-educated Americans increasingly marry one another, also ends up perpetuating existing inequalities seems blindingly obvious, which is no doubt why it’s considered embarrassing and reactionary to talk about it too overtly. We all know what we’re supposed to do — our mothers don’t have to come out and say it! 
Why, it would be like telling elite collegians that they should all move to similar cities and neighborhoods, surround themselves with their kinds of people and gradually price everybody else out of the places where social capital is built, influence exerted and great careers made. No need — that’s what we’re already doing! (What Richard Florida called “the mass relocation of highly skilled, highly educated and highly paid Americans to a relatively small number of metropolitan regions, and a corresponding exodus of the traditional lower and middle classes from these same places” is one of the striking social facts of the modern meritocratic era.) We don’t need well-meaning parents lecturing us about the advantages of elite self-segregation, and giving the game away to everybody else. ...

Lots more good stuff here.

144 comments:

Anonymous said...

http://brightlightsfilm.com/68/68twilight.php

Anonymous said...

But if indeed smart people are increasingly marrying smart people, isn't it likely that their kids will be smart and win in the meritocratic game?

Anonymous said...

This is in NYT?

Boethius said...

Congratulations Steve!
People are finally attention to you.
Unfortunately you're still officially
unquotable.

DPG said...

Douthat reads Sailer.

Honestly, let's not give him too hard of a time. At this point, it's enough to know we have an ally in the mainstream media. We shouldn't harangue him into outing himself and losing his hard-earned position from which he can troll the elites.

wren said...

Who really wrote that?

hardly said...

it is mostly the case for women. but men do not mind marrying down. The elites do not seek to consciously propagate anything. It is merely that elite women cannot bear to marry a man of lower value than themselves. On the other hand elite men do not mind marrying dumb but pretty women.

Dave Pinsen said...

Ross is cementing his place as the best and bravest of the NYT columnists. Friedman has been in the globalist/TED/Davis bubble for so long he actually believes his own pablum about "teaching innovation" and how schools should teach every student how to "invent their own jobs". Ross knows that's not why anyone goes to Princeton.

Brooks knows it too - he's a reader of yours as well, obviously - but he doesn't have Ross's stones now. Who knows though - maybe Ross will inspire him?

Pink Arrow Gal said...

it is ok for the elite to do it. They are the elite. But it is verboten for the white working class majority to do it. That would hurt the elite by increasing wages and increasing unity among the populace.

Freedom of association for me, but not for thee.

Remember the fracas that ensued when Bush tried to nominate Harriet Miers, a graduate of the SMU law school, for the SCOTUS? SMU not being Harvard or Yale. THe corporate media went into a frenzy.

Simon in London said...

I would just say that while this advice is already known to the children of the elites, for the occasional non-elite schmuck who somehow got in on merit this advice may be very useful.
I certainly wish that before going to Oxford someone had told me that it was really about the social networking, and given me some pointers on how to do that effectively.
It was only after I'd left that my Oxford-educated father lamented that I hadn't 'had fun' while I was there. Well, I didn't know I was supposed to be 'having fun' - ie networking!

Anonymous said...

I vaguely recall a book written about twenty years ago that said the same thing, it was however denounced as bad form from the media establishment. What was it's name, the something Curve. It was written by a couple of guys one of whom died before it was published. It was also "unscientific", "racist", and "classist", as well. The entire staff of liberal opinion magazine threatened to resign unless unfavorable critical reviews were inserted into the body of the article detailing the new book. That book was even more in bad form than that article written by Susan Patton, if only I could remember the name of that book, I think it had the word Bell somewhere in the title. Oh well, it must have been flushed down the memory hole never to be heard from or even it's existence acknowledged again.

sunbeam said...

"It enforces what looks suspiciously like de facto discrimination against Asian applicants with high SAT scores, while disadvantaging talented kids — often white and working class and geographically dispersed — who don’t grow up in elite enclaves with parents and friends who understand the system."

To me this raises the question: If there is so much overlooked talent, why don't they make their own world?

I agree with Douthat on a lot of this. What makes the Ivies and associated schools special is the river of money they are the gatekeepers to for a variety of reasons.

That can be attacked if the aforementioned people are willing to think outside the box a little.

Here is one thing that could be done: State banks as they have in North Dakota.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_of_North_Dakota

As a rider on this, no one should ever have a bank account with a money center bank.

Take their money and they are nothing.

That's not a magic bullet but it's a start. If you want to change things you've got to realize that it's a long march through the institutions (where have I heard that before?).

Another major leg are insurance companies. All kinds of ways to attack this one, in particular the Godzilla of health care.

Only problem is I think "conservatives" are hampered by ideological blinders. Well and good, if they truly understand themselves and that is what they truly believe.

But a lot of people who vote Republican vote as they do for reasons other than Free Market dogma.

Another interesting thing that could be done is no crap, get North Carolina, Virginia, and Georgia Tech to join the Big 10.

This is pretty complicated to explain, but most Big 10 members are members of the AAU (Association of American Universities), basically a lobbying concern for the schools in question. Rutgers and Maryland are now going to join the Big 10. If you could get UNC, GT, and UVA to join the Big 10 schools would be the bulk of the public AAU schools in the country.

Basically any research dollar funneled from Harvard and MIT to one of "your" schools is a victory, and might just help you set up a place Richard Florida would be proud to have his condo decorated in, even if it is in Bloomington, Indiana.

I might add that if the schools in question showed a bit of group solidarity, that would be quite a few Senators and Congressmen from the affected states to enlist in a lobbying effort. The revolving door at Harvard to government positions notwithstanding, that is a serious lobbying force.

Of course this requires a Senator for Michigan voting for something that benefits the University of Indiana, precisely because it benefits them and not Harvard. Presumably a Senator from Indiana will do something for Michigan at some future point.

But that's what faith, trust, and a proper identification of enemies can do for you.

Maxwell said...

And he forgot to add, what kind of blue collar uneducated bigot actually encourages whites to mate? Its like the neanderthal celts who actually admired the Beckhams with their litter of 4. Wait a minute, bad example, Becks is half-Scots-Irish, and we are supposed to encourage the Scots-Irish to have kids, what are you some kind of Anti-Semite, not to want them to have large families?

Ray Sawhill said...

That's a good piece, tks for pointing it out.

Anonymous said...

Should we be thinking of two forms of downward mobility? The classic type sees the children of Ivy LEague parents going to good state schools, or the parents of Flagship State U alums flunking out of Flagship State U or going to Safety State.

But should we look at childlessness as another case of "downward mobility"? Instead of from Duke to UNC to UNC-Charlotte, from Duke to nowhere?

After all, no matter where you went to college, you can't have a Harvard grandchild without grandchildren.

--Discordiax

Michael Ryan said...

sounds exactly like something you could have written,obviously you re breaking through to them not that they will ever let you personally in. however i hope you at least have the satisfaction of knowing you go beyond striking exactly the right tone. but that you have laid the cornerstone.

Anonymous said...

The comments are hilarious. Is there nothing liberals won't blame conservatives for? Underprivileged, but talented whites and high IQ Asians aren't admitted to Ivies because of the increasing social stratification brought about by a conservative ideology. In what world does that make sense?

carol said...

The few commenters I read seem pretty defensive..they missed the point about how gauche the Princeton lady was.

I looked that word up, just for review. A classmate called me gauche in high school. Too true; I was raised by wolves.

But, I think the gaucheness problem is key. It all goes back to PC again - we all know the truth, dear, but just don't say it out loud. It's gauche.

Anonymous said...

Douthat needs to start paying you, seriously.

Anonymous said...

Douthat and Brooks focus on the upper middle class to distract readers from the real issue of the top 0.01% sucking up all the wealth.

Ray Sawhill said...

All very true. I attended PU and (naive sucker that I was) was surprised by how little life there was about getting-a-decent-education and how much it was about making-connections. An introduction to (and indoctrination into) elite ways of doing things, not much more than that.

Ray Sawhill said...

Maybe it is/was just me, but where Ivy life goes I've always wondered why more notice hasn't been taken of two Ivy groups: the semi-disaffected internal sorta dropouts, and the kids who go to Ivies and burn out entirely. Both were very apparent during my years there.

People talk about attending-an-Ivy as this pathway into the elite, and for a lot of kids it's certainly that. But there are also people whose Ivy experience is very different.

The first group usually sticks it out (for whatever reasons) but then often goes on to have distinctly non-elite lives. Why did we stick it out? (In my own case: I gave a lot of thought to transferring out but my parents would have been upset, and I had no real reason to think that any other place would be better. Plus: pretty campus, fun friends. Plus: it's only four years, and why *not* tough it out?) During my time at PU I sometimes guessed that the percentage of kids on campus who qualified as dropouts-but-sticking-it-out-anyway was as high as 30% of the school's population. At other times it seemed more like 10%. But still a sizable number.

In the second case: some kids are pushed so hard to excel as kids and students that they peak during their college years. They're exhausted, and they have no more to give. So far as making-something-of-their-talents goes, it's all downhill for them after college is over.

Anonymous said...

Steve - what are your thoughts on Douthat? He seems to be on a roll lately. His 'Culture, Class and the Decline of Marriage' article was pretty outstanding. You seem to have a pretty good insight into these NYTimes guys.

Anonymous said...

Assortative mating based on IQ makes evolutional sense, far better than racial based mating.

poolside said...

And I'm sure NY Times readers -- many of whom fit neatly into the world Douthat is describing -- all write in to tell him what a stupid conservative he is. Right?

Anonymous said...

He's just ripping you off at this point.

Luke Lea said...

Douthat wrote about some of this in his first book, Privilege, which was a memoir of his four years at Harvard. One point barely mentioned in the article is the lack of geographical and white ethnic diversity at Harvard, with the South and Mid-West (and rural areas everywhere) woefully underrepresented.

Another point not mentioned is the deterioration of the liberal arts curriculum. Most students graduate with little exposure to the broad sweep of Western culture and civilization. Instead the whole emphasis in on developing "critical thinking skills" on a hodgepodge of specialized topics of the students' own choosing.

As for how all this is working out for our nation and its people, look around you and decide.

rightsaidfred said...

Maybe part of Douthat's conscience problem is that the elites aren't delivering much value anymore.

We used to get some music, art, and literature worth considering back in the day from the snobs on the hill.

Today we get dicey financial dealings and "Django Unchained".

No wonder Douthat is concerned.

DCThrowback said...

Anonymous said...

Douthat needs to start paying you, seriously.

4/7/13, 6:48 AM

Anonymous said...

He's just ripping you off at this point.

4/7/13, 7:38 AM

---------------------------

Apparently he spends as much time in your archives as I do. The "noblesse oblige" line was a dead giveaway. A great piece of writing to be sure and confirmation that your work has a lot of unseen admirers.

Svigor said...

Assortative mating based on IQ makes evolutional sense, far better than racial based mating.

Yeah, the great thing about "assortative mating based on IQ" is it will eliminate whites from existence, but leave all the other races intact. It's "racial based mating" for non-whites, and genocide for whites. So it serves non-white genetic interests and destroys white genetic interests while using the rhetoric of "meritocracy" and "anti-racism" for the libs and "eugenics" for the cons.

Thanks for the well-intended advice. What would we do without kindly people like you to point out what's best for us?

Anonymous said...

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=442543449159432&set=oa.345727585539354&type=1&theater

What the globalist elites did to this country.

Anonymous said...

Becks is half-Scots-Irish

One-quarter, not one-half. Can't you Jew-haters keep track of details?

Anonymous said...

"Douthat reads Sailer."

Or Murray. Even Brooks hinted at this.

The real significance of this piece is this: In the past, conservatives attacked liberal elite culture and ideology but always defended elite privileges as more or less meritocratic.
Now, even the socio-economic dimensions of elitism is being questioned as the superrich elites are so overwhelmingly liberal.

Anonymous said...

"The comments are hilarious. Is there nothing liberals won't blame conservatives for? Underprivileged, but talented whites and high IQ Asians aren't admitted to Ivies because of the increasing social stratification brought about by a conservative ideology. In what world does that make sense?"

There is some truth to that though it is a wild exaggeration.
Conservatives pushed for free markets, get-as-rich-as-can-be, lower taxes, deregulation, free trade, and etc more than liberals did, though esp under clinton, libs came around.
Conservatives thought that since they were more pro-rich, the rising elites of the post cold war would be on the side of conservatives and support the GOP.
But the real winners were liberal Jews, gays, and their boomer allies who happen to have more ideas than conservatives. It's like the white man invented basketball but blacks dominated it.

Conservatives are beginning to fill like a jilted lover. They feel like the woman who did so much to make the man succeed... but the man took off to marry a liberal wife who has the glamour of higher morality, creativity, and intellect.

The 'gauche' remark is crucial to understanding why cons failed to win over the superrich even though they did so much for the superrich. Unless you're some boorish Russian gangster nouveau riche tycoon, you don't wanna seem piggish, crass, and loutish with your money. You wanna seem classy than crassy. So, millionaire celebs take up some 'cause'. So, billionaires wanna make deal of their compassion.
Such people look at vulgar pigs like Rush Limbaugh and Donald Trump and feel 'I don't wanna belong to that club.'

Anonymous said...

"One point barely mentioned in the article is the lack of geographical and white ethnic diversity at Harvard, with the South and Mid-West (and rural areas everywhere) woefully underrepresented."

A lot of that is self selection though. I went to high school in the Midwest. A lot of very academically talented upper middle class kids with high SAT scores, debate championships, Science Olympiad prizes, etc. could have competed for the Ivy League schools but were quite content to go to State-U, or stay local and attend Case Western or whatever.

I know this, because I was a far more mediocre student compared with these guys (but with decent GPA and good SAT score) and I got into Cornell.

In the NY and Boston suburbs, *every* academically motivated kid applies to the Ivies.

candid_observer said...

One of the reasons that HBD is critical for society moving forward is that allow us to recognize the real problems we face, as opposed to the fake ones we focus on instead.

What if it turns out that all of the efforts to improve the lot of the non-elites by radically reforming their education are going to prove completely fruitless? What if their educational achievements are about as good as they're going to get?

Then the issue of who's getting into HYP, and the role of graduating from HYP, takes central stage in the discussion of how elites entrench themselves, and build a wall between themselves and the rest of society. No longer can we pretend that there will be a dramatically different outcome if only elementary and secondary schooling does its job, thereby erasing inequality. The elitist buck pretty much starts and stops at HYP.

Genetics won't change, but society's attitude toward HYP, and the policies at HYP, can be made to change.

Anonymous said...

One of Douthat's commentors resonated with me: that the term "ivy" is lazy term meaning the elite, the best thought leaders.

I work in a niche of medicine and asked myself: Who are our thought leaders? where do they practice? which have I paid from my own purse, to access their ideas? Here's my list:
1) University of Maryland/Baltimore
2) Ohio State/Columbus
3) Lansing MI (not UM, but in that city)
4)UCLA

So, that's where our elite thought leaders hail from.

Alden said...

The left should be scared of this gentleman. Ross Douthat is sapping right under their walls, unnoticed.

Good job, Ross. And good job, Steve. You're in the New York Times today.

Anonymous said...

Re: "the modern meritocratic culture."

This is surely the age of delusion.

Does anyone seriously doubt that US culture was far more meritocratic fifty years ago?

This is the era of legacy, nepotism and cronyism. Meritocracy went out the window years ago.

Ed said...

To echo the comments made by Simon of London and Ray Swahill, I was also a fish-out-of-water non-elite schmuck who wound up in an Ivy League school.

My first thought was that I would have benefited from some advice along the lines of "you are here to network, here is how you do it." But my second thought is that the Horatio Alger story of the poor kid being noticed and liked by the elites and incorporated into them is mostly a myth (and btw that is the real Horatio Alger story, not that he advances through hard work or smarts). People in the elite simply don't have much need or desire to "adopt" many non-elite types that they run into.

So if I had known more of how the world really works at the age of eighteen, I probably would have stayed away from that scene altogether. Though it actually wasn't a terrible experience, there was just a n out-of-place, caught-between-two-worlds thing that has increasingly become a drag as the world in general gets more tribal.

I also agree with the commentator that the subtext to this sort of commentary is that our elites haven't exactly been delivering much of value for the part twenty years.

as said...

I don't know if this has been mentioned, but guys who go to fancy schools just aren't funny and they aren't really fun loving. They aren't God-fearing either.

There's this element that just tells you what schools they went to. When they're in school, they tell you about the hard classes they're in, and how difficult they are. When they start working, they tell you about how stressful their job is. They can't actually say anything interesting. Kind of like how they can't say anything funny.





Anonymous said...

http://www.suntimes.com/rogerebert/memorial/19293360-808/beyond-the-valley-of-the-dolls-screenplay-eberts-one-big-mistake.html

Royko was the best.

kurt9 said...

"Secrets of Princeton" is by far Douthat's best piece. Unfortunately, the gate keepers at NYT seem to disagree. They have shut off comments to it.

Anonymous said...

http://www.artsjournal.com/aboutlastnight/

Anonymous said...

Fascinating controversty this. The main thing is your not supposed to say this. Or event think it. Yet somehow it must go on.

Anonymous said...

Interestingly enough, Douthat was or still is a film critic like Sailer.

I remember reading his review of TWILIGHT and thinking 'what a dumb movie, some crap I don't have to see'.

Seeing TWILIGHT recently I must say it's something special. No great work of art but definitely special.

Anonymous said...

http://www.artsjournal.com/blogs.php

Matthew said...

The part I loved about this story is that when Ms. Patton was accused of being a WASP she defended herself by stating that she is "a nice Jewish mother."

That signalled to me that she is fully part of the so-called elite - the elite that believes that racism is only bad if you're a white gentile, but fine for everyone else. Any truly decent person would have deigned to answer the accusation, and/or would have questioned why the ethnicity of someone giving such advice even matters. Either it's good advice or it isn't.

And it is good advice, for any student at any college. People nowadays begin the mating game far too late. Shame the advice had to come from someone who seems so loathsome.

Dennis Dale said...

How long until they figure out how to get rid of this guy? He's becoming too adept at skirting the line. How long until he writes that "offensive" column that gives the editors the pretext they need?

They thought they were getting the next generation of David Brooks. Who cares if he's channeling Sailer? It's the Lord's work. But if you want a cold shower to cure the sudden arousal at seeing something so salacious as this in NYT (no less!), just have a gander at the comments. There's no reasoning with the self-described "reality based community", and they are legion.

Alwaysright said...

White liberals are the most racist people in society, as stated by black neurosurgeon Ben Carson. But they feel guilty about it, so they endorse abstract philosophies like political correctness and race denial, which make them feel morally superior to white proles, but have nothing to do with how they treal individual blacks in real life.

White liberals don't even like lower class members of their own people, and they expect us to believe they love blacks. BULL! They like blacks who stay in their place and make them feel virtuous, but they hate blacks who can make it on their own and don't need them.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2013/04/07/elites-close-ranks-around-ivy-league-intermarriage/

Anonymous said...

A Douthat tweet:

People who had a particularly strong reaction to this week's column should know it also exists in book-length form: http://amzn.to/XmsT93

Dahlia said...

"A great piece of writing to be sure and confirmation that your work has a lot of unseen admirers."

One thing I love about Steve's comment threads, and part of what make them so special, are the people who are highly intelligent with a high profile who come here, let their hair down, and comment anonymously. Have an alternate ego, I mean.
There are two that I feel very confident about; I did no sleuthing, it was their "voices" and I recognized them. I'm sure there are more.

BTW, the only reason I would out anyone is if they invented a false persona. To do that to anyone else is immoral in my view. No matter how profoundly I disliked or disagreed with an alternate ego, I would not do that.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2013/04/07/elites-close-ranks-around-ivy-league-intermarriage/

Whiskey said...

Steve --

Douthat and others are scared. As you noted, the Upper Class is a semi-hereditary aristocracy. Lord Granthams without the Downton Abbeys, but with rotating in and out of goverment, Goldman Sachs, NGOs, the media, and the like.

What is wrong with the West is that ala Murray, the SuperZips exploded by a factor of about 8-10 from 1950 to 2010. Much of this was driven by both the expansion of the Welfare State, and the modern corporate world tied to the Welfare State. Who you knew, where you went to school, mattered not how smart you were or what you could deliver. For a brief shining moment the Dot-Com boom promised to overthrow that tyranny of aristocracy but then crashed.

Now after using a mass imported non-White population allied with single White women (as you pointed out) to crush married (and single) White guys without money, power, and connections, the elites are scared as to what comes next. Make people poor take away their money, and Machiavelli advises you are doomed. A ruler is better off killing them; and the elite do not have the power or the will.

What comes next is Golden Dawn in Greece, something like that allied to Russia in Cyprus, something like that in Italy (as the Five Star Movement collapses and Berlusconi is mired in his own corruption scandals). And Spain. And France. And Austria. And the UK. And here.

And by that I mean an open, class conscious war waged by the lower and middle class Whites who are made poor by taxes and bank account seizures and punitive social control (Bloomberg can make life miserable for the ordinary White guy wanting a Big Gulp but not the Black thug who kills to get laid). Think the Jacksonian street-level political battles in the 1820s and 1830's.

That's what they're scared of.

Anonymous said...

Ron Unz ran harder the court and made the shot, but Douthat got the rebound and made it go in.

Btw, though the Douther's piece is seen as an anti-liberal screed, it also betrays fissures within conservatism. For too long, the conservative masses went along with 'free trade', tax cuts for superrich, and rich-deserve-to-be-rich rhetoric, but what did conservative elitism give us? Bush dynasty, Cheney, Romney and Paul, Buckley sucking up to crass Limbaugh and vicious neocons, Condi Rice the phony, Gingrich barking as Adelson's boy, Republicans defending Wall Street even after 2008(even though Wall Street supported Obama and push stuff like 'gay marriage'), etc.

Liberal meritocracy may be BS but not as much as conservative 'meritocracy' that gives rise to the likes of Bush II, Quayle, Palin, Rubio, Rand Paul, and the rest of the dummies or whores.

At the very least, a lot of truly brilliant people working in Silicon Valley did rise by talent and guess what? They are almost all liberals.

Matthew said...

"A lot of that is self selection though. I went to high school in the Midwest. A lot of very academically talented upper middle class kids with high SAT scores, debate championships, Science Olympiad prizes, etc. could have competed for the Ivy League schools but were quite content to go to State-U"

Used here, "self-selection" means that these kids fully understood that they, as middle-class, straight, white gentiles, didn't have a snowball's chance getting admitted to a school where the elites game the admissions process.

I had several friends with resumes that should easily have qualified them for Ivy League, had they the right connections, yet my upper middle-class, suburban high school in conservative flyover country was lucky to send one valedictorian to the Ivy League every other year or so.

Anonymous said...

Assortative mating based on IQ makes evolutional sense, far better than racial based mating.

Yes that 'assortative' bit is handy for deflecting attention from the racial bit in nominally racially egalitarian age.

Anonymous said...

"A lot of that is self selection though. I went to high school in the Midwest. A lot of very academically talented upper middle class kids with high SAT scores, debate championships, Science Olympiad prizes, etc. could have competed for the Ivy League schools but were quite content to go to State-U"

Used here, "self-selection" means that these kids fully understood that they, as middle-class, straight, white gentiles, didn't have a snowball's chance getting admitted to a school where the elites game the admissions process.


I think they could have been admitted. But they may have had misgivings about traveling far from home to an environment that is hostile to them.

FredR said...

Yeah, weirdly enough, Twilight was a pretty well done movie.

Anonymous said...

Hey ladies success is not a done deal until loverboy has graduated and demonstrated employability.

Anonymous said...

"Assortative mating based on IQ makes evolutional sense, far better than racial based mating."

Not necessarily if the children end up reverting to the mean, not looking very attractive to either parents racial stock, and grow up feeling bitter about it and alienated. Think of the Children!

Anonymous said...

Hey ladies success is not a done deal until loverboy has graduated and demonstrated employability.

Explain?

Anonymous said...

The comments are hilarious. Is there nothing liberals won't blame conservatives for? Underprivileged, but talented whites and high IQ Asians aren't admitted to Ivies because of the increasing social stratification brought about by a conservative ideology. In what world does that make sense?

Absolutely, some guy thinks socialized medicine will make up for elite university discrimination, you know like in Britain. In the UK, the rich simply bypass the NHS, and go to private doctors, while poor people go to awful government run hospitals, how very egalitarian. He blames the GOP for student financial debt, as if Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan thought it up instead of left wing Democrats. What universe do these people inhabit? How is the GOP the party of Billy Bobs and rubes in Peoria and yet controls hospitals, universities, and the tax code? That part is never explained.

candid_observer said...

One thing in many of the comments I read about HYP that strikes me as off is the claim that the advantage it grants is the set of connections one makes while at the school.

That doesn't get how it works. The people you meet when at the school are not terribly likely to be the people who prove useful to you in the progress of your life.

It is far more often the people you meet AFTER you go to HYP who also went to HYP, and the others who are greatly impressed because you went to HYP, who will really make the difference in your life. They are the ones in the exact position to help you out, whereas the friends you make while an undergraduate typically are too widely spread in their interests to be of much help.

As I've told people I know many a time, the true point of going to Harvard is to be able to say someday that you went to Harvard. (Forget about the classes and the professors and the friends and the wonderful experiences, whatever they may be.)

Anonymous said...

"Hey ladies success is not a done deal until loverboy has graduated and demonstrated employability."

"Explain?"

I think he means that it is too soon to tell if a guy will be economically successful at age 22 when he is graduating from college. Better to wait and make sure he can provide for you appropriately.

Rohan Swee said...

DPG: Douthat reads Sailer.

..and then, there are people who blog for the NYT who probably don't read Sailer.

Dave Pinsen said...

"Secrets of Princeton" is by far Douthat's best piece

Disagree. This was his best one: "The Liberal Gloat".

Thanatos said...

"
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Becks is half-Scots-Irish

One-quarter, not one-half. Can't you Jew-haters keep track of details?"


According to the man himself, he's said he's half. That is, unless you know more than him about it.

Lionel said...

The thing about Susan Patton that stood out for me was that she is divorced and her marriage seems to have been very unhappy with her husband always resenting her Ivy League education. SOOOO, why is she giving marriage/relationship advice? She feels she would have had a happy marriage if she'd married a fellow Ivy Leaguer but how can anyone know that?

I agree with some commenters that if one is not already a member of the elite, Ivy League college could be a fish-out-of-water experience. The rich still do debutante balls. There are many ways that they will separate themselves from non-elites, spending money first and foremost.

The NYTimes has done a number of articles lately that clearly try to discourage people from going to law school. Its odd. My take is that they are worried about competition in the law field; its the only thing that makes sense for the Times to be doing more than one article. How about discouraging kids from going to film school? You're never going to get any where with all the competition from the children of famous actors and directors.

Anonymous said...

The rich still do debutante balls. There are many ways that they will separate themselves from non-elites, spending money first and foremost.

You are pretty out of touch. No offense.

The alienation, if not outright discrimination, arises from the fact that the atmosphere is anti-White, anti-Christian, anti-American (insofar as the prevailing norms are "multiculturalist"), anti-American (insofar as the prevailing norms are Zionist), rootless, and cosmopolitan.

Aging Hag said...

It's a good editorial but I still think that the reason the poor lady got savaged was because she pissed off feminists.

If it was just about class, lefties would be quite sympathetic, or pretend to be.

But appear to question the feminist verities (that a woman's primary job in life is to get married & have kids), watch out.

Somewhat off-topic, I really wonder whether gay rights is going to tear through American society the way feminism did, and administer the final coup de grace to anything normal.

Watching the discourse now is like watching Invasion of the Body Snatchers. If you don't sport that red "marriage equality" sign, you are a counter revolutionary.

Anonymous said...

The elites do not seek to consciously propagate anything.

Depends on which elites you are talking about.

Anonymous said...

Brooks knows it too - he's a reader of yours as well, obviously - but he doesn't have Ross's stones now. Who knows though - maybe Ross will inspire him?

Not likely. Brooks is a Zionist.

Crawfurdmuir said...

Elites have always existed and always will exist. That we have an elite is no surprise; that it tries to cloak its existence under professions of egalitarianism is hypocritical, and is what is novel.

One of the few sensible comments in the (now closed) NYT comment section on Douthat's article was that one ought to compare the composition of an Ivy League class of today with that of a similar class of 50 years ago, to cure oneself of any supposition that the upper class has not changed. The stereotype of the rich WASP elite, heirs to the fortunes of the Gilded Age, is the perennial butt of egalitarian attacks, but is at least 50 years out of date. The ethnic composition of today's elite differs markedly from that stereotype in ways that the egalitarians are generally unwilling to portray.

It is reasonable to say that the elite in each age has excelled in those capacities that the age has valued most. Thus in the early middle ages, when the ability to fight and to lead a mob of peasants mustered into a component of a feudal army was most valued, men who excelled in those skills rose to the noblesse de l'épée. In the later middle ages, when a command of the complexities of law superseded that of military leadership in importance, the ascendancy of the noblesse de la robe followed in due course. With the arrival of the Renaissance, when joining the entourage of a prince was the route to success, those who showed the greatest polish and subtlety in the arts of the courtier rose to similar prominence; and in the commercial age that followed, those who understood the intricacies of trade and finance did likewise in their turn. Each succeeding elite took its care to marry into the preceding one, cementing its top-rank status by dulling its brash nouveau-riche flash with the patina of ancient heritage.

Each age's elite has thus been a sort of meritocracy, since persons of middling or poor skill never survived the competition, whether it was in soldiering, the law-courts, the royal courts, or the markets. And since it is the case that intelligence portends success in almost any endeavor, and intelligence has a significant hereditary component, elites have tended to exhibit the same hereditary element. The precept that "a fool and his money are soon parted" has never ceased to function, even if delayed or mitigated in its action for a generation or two by such measures as entailed estates or heritable trusts.

We would delude ourselves if we believed that our elite today were more meritocratic than that of the sixteenth century. It is an interesting exercise to read both Castiglione's "The Courtier" and Machiavelli's "The Prince" together. The Renaissance courtier had to have at a minimum either all of the military skills of a staff officer, or all of the skills of a lawyer and diplomat, the ability to ride to the hounds, to turn out a sonnet on demand, to engage in table talk with his prince in a way both learned and amusing, to take a part in a madrigal or play a musical instrument, all this while being aware of plots against him and plotting similarly at the same time againsthis rivals. All of this had to be done with "sprezzatura" - the art of making the difficult appear effortless. I wonder how many of today's Ivy graduates could have held their own at the court of Urbino, or some other principality of five centuries ago. Damned few, I'd hazard.

Each age gets the elite it deserves, and that of today has inverted the concept of sprezzatura - it seeks to make the effortless look difficult. Reading the prose on the New York Times editorial page should be sufficient to demonstrate the point!

Anonymous said...

"The thing about Susan Patton that stood out for me was that she is divorced and her marriage seems to have been very unhappy with her husband always resenting her Ivy League education."

In her case, it's just Jewish ego on fire. Though she pretends to give advice, she's just begging for attention and striking out at personal enemies.

It's like Chua's book. Though it seems to be about raising her daughters, it's all me, me, me.

If Chua says, "I made it, I made it, I made it, and my daughters are gonna make it too"...

Patton says, "I married a loser who didn't gimme the stuff that coulda made me happy."

Lots of Jewish women are nuts, which is why Jewish mothers turned so many Jewish sons into loonies.

Betty Friedan in the 50s compared her nice suburban life to the Holocaust.

Now we have a Jewish Patton who makes noise that goes...

"No successful and happy member of the elite ever won the social lottery by buying into equality. She won it by making the other poor dumb bitch buy into equality."

Anonymous said...

@ Lionel -

I come from an upper middle class flyover (yes, you read that correctly) Jewish background and attended an Ivy. While there were a lot of people from much wealthier families than mine, the super-rich did not represent a majority of the people there. I developed the impression that upper middle class was the most common socioeconomic background.

The commenter who mentioned self-selection among southerners and mid-Westerners is on to something. Not all of the academically talented kids in my class, most of whom were non-Jewish Whites, were willing to consider leaving the state or the region for college. Some of them had businesses to inherit, so the local connections were valuable. Others were more concerned with fun and social environment at that point of their lives and less interested in long-term career building. I certainly didn't find the Ivy I attended to be fun, so perhaps they weren't misguided. My career has turned out no more elite than many of theirs. I certainly would have liked to inherit a business more than work in my current field.

Jeff said...

I went to Cornell, which is probably different from every other Ivy school in some ways. It's larger and more diverse - Agriculture school includes farmers' kids and other working class upstaters. The school has a working dairy farm, something you won't find at Harvard. I'd say HYP is at least a couple steps above the other five Ivies in prestige/connections value. The lower Ivies are closer to Duke/Vandy/Gtown/Notre Dame/BC/Lehigh/Michigan/UNC etc.

One thing you don't realize at 17 is that you go to college for four years, but you're a member of the community for 60 years. I didn't have a very good experience at Cornell for a variety of reasons, but I graduated and it's my school, and whether I like it or not, I'm a member of the community. So I'm trying to make it work for me somehow.

One way it didn't work for me is in regards to women. Women were the minority at Cornell when I was there, and attractive women a smaller minority still. I'm still single in my mid 30's. Meanwhile, my sister attended another Ivy, and met her future husband her freshman year. She now has three kids.

Ivy League schools were always about extending the privileges of the upper class. To me, the more pressing issue is the outrage over that woman's sensible advice to find a man at Princeton. Any criticism of her should be shot down harshly - she may have her personal issues, but it was just common sense. I know personally that her advice is pretty valid for men as well. it's tougher out of college for us too.

Anonymous said...

"Assortative mating based on IQ makes evolutional sense, far better than racial based mating."

No it doesn't. What makes evolutionary sense is assortative mating on attractiveness aka low genetic load, preferably within your own ethnic group.

The exception is if your ethnic group spent a long time only selecting on IQ and therefore has a lot of genetic defects in other areas. In that case gene-stealing from groups with low genetic load is the best option for you - if not for them.

Aging Hag said...

" Becks is half-Scots-Irish, and we are supposed to encourage the Scots-Irish to have kids, what are you some kind of Anti-Semite, not to want them to have large families?"

Um....David Beckham's maternal grandfather was Jewish. Can you please try really really hard and stop blaming the Jooz for everything?

Susan Patton, the criminal writer of the perceptive letter, is also Jewish.

Anonymous said...

The current elite don't see themselves as part of the population.

They're a colonial overclass.

Figgy said...

To paraphrase P.T. Barnum - you will never go wrong underestimating the mental acumen of people who comment on the NY Times website. Most of these bozos totally missed the subtlety of Douthat's article. But, what else is new....

Anonymous said...

"Absolutely, some guy thinks socialized medicine will make up for elite university discrimination, you know like in Britain. In the UK, the rich simply bypass the NHS, and go to private doctors, while poor people go to awful government run hospitals, how very egalitarian. He blames the GOP for student financial debt, as if Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan thought it up instead of left wing Democrats. What universe do these people inhabit? How is the GOP the party of Billy Bobs and rubes in Peoria and yet controls hospitals, universities, and the tax code? That part is never explained."

Ah, yes, the wreckers at it again, Comrade!

NY Journal of Atavistic Reactions said...

Lotta nice knee-jerk comments over at the article link... They seem to be attributing what Ross describes to the Republican Party somehow... The one that always campaigns on its Old Ivy pedigree in every state- and especially national-level election, remember?

sunbeam said...

I think a lot of you guys are missing the point.

What makes the Ivies and associated schools special?

I agree with Douthat, it's not the education. That's irrelevant. If it is relevant, it applies only in certain fields like science where the output can be measured. (In which case you need to go to MIT or Caltech instead, and Stanford might be better too depending on what you are studying).

So what do you get out of going to one of these elite institutions?

It's not a good time. It's not hot chicks (or hot guys).

What's left?

Money. Power. Influence.

In past editions of America going to Harvard was a good way to make yourself eligible for a Cabinet post, or a job at the State Department.

Now it's required more than ever. Take a look at who gets appointed to all these public positions. Have we ever had a Fed Chairman who didn't attend a school we'd call elite now?

It's always been this way to a certain extent. What is different now is how much of the economic output of this country is funneled into the FIRE sector. Feel free to correct me, but for most of this countries history FIRE has been anywhere from 7 to 10 percent of GDP.

Now it's upward of 40. Depending on where you stand on what the "Real Economy" actually is, it could well be higher. There really ain't a whole lot going on besides government spending and resource extraction right now.

So from my perspective what makes the Ivies, the Ivies?

Money.

That's it. I could give a rat's ass what someone at Harvard, Yale, or Princeton think about anything except as it affects my own life.

And thanks to our system of politics, the outsize amount of money Wall Street and associated sectors like insurance have captured, have enabled them to capture the Federal government in turn.

There are no populists. We have people who talk that game every 2, 4, or 6 years depending on what they are running for, but they aren't really. And if they were their opponent would get the money to steamroll them.

Now occasionally you get a fellow who makes interesting noises, let's call him Paul for the sake of argument, but those noises aren't going anywhere. And a cynic might wonder how committed they were to certain ideas if they were ever in a position to do anything about them.

If you swing that way, I'd also like to point out that we don't have any real socialists or communists or whatever you want to call them either. Such convictions just aren't part of our modern elected officials, Bernie Sanders notwithstanding.

So from my perspective we have a heckuva problem. And the beginning and end of it, what makes it special compared to previous eras in this country is... you guessed it money.

So how do we take money away from Goldman Sachs? How do we take money away from Harvard? You might say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.

It's pretty simple to me. These guys, this particular crew is built around pushing paper and numbers around. Reduce the numbers they get to push around, there is less to take off the top.

It's that simple. Reduce the research dollars that go to the institutions in question, and send them to an institution you like better, or at least can stomach.

As regards health insurance. Gosh, you really need me to give you a lecture on that one? Right now we spend 15% of GDP on Healthcare. Want to explain to me where the profits to this go?

If you have a better solution, or a more accurate diagnosis of the problem I'd like to hear it. But right now I don't think you understand what is going on, nor have any idea about what to do about it.

Anonymous said...

http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/relationships/the-zipless-f-has-become-the-norm-according-to-a-new-book-the-end-of-sex/story-fnet0gt3-1226614764417

This is a view supporting Patton, from a mother of young boys. She nails everything.

Glossy said...

"Or why the American population gets bigger and bigger, but our richest universities admit the same size classes every year."

I think that's the sentence that comes closest to showing a connection with Steve's stuff. The growth rate of top universities compared to the growth rate of the overall population is a pretty random, obscure thing to talk about, but Steve has mentioned it recently. I'd say that's more of a clue than the mention of Richard Florida. Lots of people have heard of Mr. Florida. He seems to be an effective self-promoter.

By the way, I'm sure that the breeding population for the elites has been falling for some time. The higher you go on the IQ scale, the lower the TFR. It could well be below 1 at the Ivy level. The Wikipedia implies that it's 0 in the Douthat household. And if the Flynn effect was caused by nutrition gains, then it is surely already played out. So if these universities wanted to remain at the same intellectual level, they'd be shrinking now.

Anonymous said...

"To me, the more pressing issue is the outrage over that woman's sensible advice to find a man at Princeton. Any criticism of her should be shot down harshly - she may have her personal issues, but it was just common sense. I know personally that her advice is pretty valid for men as well. it's tougher out of college for us too." - Jeff.

Good points. Strange, it drives many contemporary crazy to be reminded that they don't necessarily want what they are being told they are supposed to want.

I can't say it bothers me though. A few years in the real world will disabuse them of their academic illusions. Patton was trying spare them some pain. That was her mistake.

Douthat should do a post on how this type of information is generally conveyed, given that it can't be said out loud. Do elites point to spinster aunts in mock applause? Do they just avoid certain classes without saying why?

Anonymous said...

"Pink Arrow Gal said...

Remember the fracas that ensued when Bush tried to nominate Harriet Miers, a graduate of the SMU law school, for the SCOTUS? SMU not being Harvard or Yale. THe corporate media went into a frenzy."

Harriet Miers was a dolt. The "corporate media" didn't oppose her appointment, conservatives did:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/24/AR2005102401744.html

Anonymous said...

With hookup culture being the college norm, and marriage delayed into the late 20's and early 30's amongst the professional classes, I think the whole debate is pointless.

I too went to Cornell, as above, graduating a decade ago. At Cornell, historically a lot of students married each other, but I doubt that is much the case nowadays.

The girls at places like Cornell, and probably even moreso at HYP, were driven in high school, and college is their ticket to a career (or perhaps more accurately, grad school, which then will be a ticket to a career). A man, who has his own career, will just be a potential hindrance to them. In the eyes of college students male and female, marrying is something that old people do. Most of them haven't even dated yet, though they may be "hooking up" to varying extents.

That's how much off the radar marriage is.

Anonymous said...

I was intrigued by the Tony Abbott incident referenced in the Aussie op-ed link somewhere above--how amazingly brief now the time span between some moral concept being socially conventional and turning near-heretical (see also Jeremy Irons recently on the estate tax). Joan Didion pretty much nailed it a few decades ago in that appraisal of early 70s feminism... Now it's sublimated to its purest phase, to wit: "You can't tell me what to do!! You're not my dad!"

map said...

I finished the series Downton Abby. It reminded me about something important you said before, about how a society based on hereditary privilege knows that it is a society based on hereditary privilege. Stability came with the realization that the only reason why Carson was a butler and Lord Grantham was a Lord was the latter picked his parents correctly. People understood this and adjusted accordingly. Yet, that world collapsed very quickly.

With the new meritocracy pointing fingers at people as losers, how long will this last?

Anonymous said...

Rich people hate 'gauche', especially in others. In fact, rich people don't wanna be known as 'rich' but as 'successful' or 'accomplished'.

What's funny is Taki. I'm sure there are some who see him as a rich gauche crazy Greek. But Taki sees himself as a classy guy and always bashes the vulgar rich of Russia and Saudi Arabia who supposedly have no manners. I guess it's all very relative.

Taki's remarks about Larry Ellison's yacht is hilarious.

But too much of conservatism is being totally wowed by crass conspicuous show of wealth.

Anonymous said...

"I think they could have been admitted. But they may have had misgivings about traveling far from home to an environment that is hostile to them."

Right but that isn't "self-selection".

It's as the previous guy pointed out; a calculated recognition that they are being targeted on the basis of race and to some extent on race and political leanings.

It's discrimination. But it's seen as okay/worthy of applause because the victims are the 'right' victims (i.e. non-Jewish whites).

Douthat deserves praise. In particular because he refused to skip over working class whites and whites in general in red state America, the way Murray's shameful AEI Op-Ed did(which only focused on Asians).

But as someone said, the gatekeepers at NYT went into panic mode and shut the comments down. Would they do the same if he wrote about a situation pertaining Jewish admissions into Ivy League with sympathy?

We all know the answer to that question.

Dr Van Nostrand said...

Her betrayal consists of being gauche enough to acknowledge publicly a truth that everyone who’s come up through Ivy League culture knows intuitively — that elite universities are about connecting more than learning, that the social world matters far more than the classroom to undergraduates, "

I always wondered that. As an engineering major , I never really had a lot of time at my disposal to socialize- even 12 credits(in a semester system) could be very heavy.
Perhaps when the elite have degrees in humanities,psychology et al it is the equivalent of the ancient Mandarin aristocrats growing long nails to show that need not any manual work associated with the riff raff.

I always wondered how a guy from say a public ivy with a major in accounting and a CPA certification could only start at the bottom at a bank or any other financial institution but a History major from Yale would immediately be propelled to middle management at the very least.

Who you know than what you know still rings true even in "meritocratic" societies.




Dr Van Nostrand said...


Remember the fracas that ensued when Bush tried to nominate Harriet Miers, a graduate of the SMU law school, for the SCOTUS? SMU not being Harvard or Yale. THe corporate media went into a frenzy."

Good point. Even the normally sensible and pro working class Ann Coulter (Cornell Law) attacked Bush over it(the first time she did so in her columns)

Dr Van Nostrand said...


What's funny is Taki. I'm sure there are some who see him as a rich gauche crazy Greek. But Taki sees himself as a classy guy and always bashes the vulgar rich of Russia and Saudi Arabia who supposedly have no manners. I guess it's all very relative.

Taki's remarks about Larry Ellison's yacht is hilarious. "

I think Taki's shtick is the classic anti semitic "you didnt build that with your hands so you dont deserve the wealth which it creates" shtick. Never mind Taki himself didnt build squat, his dad built and ran many factories and he has been piggybacking off this street cred ever since. He is just as noveau riche as those he despises, his regaling of his connections,elite vacations, fine dining and high living are just very crass. An actual upper class WASP for eg would be never be so gauche.

Taki keeps referring to himself as a "humble Greek" ,its so melodramatic that you would require a heart of stone not to laugh at it.

Dr Van Nostrand said...


But too much of conservatism is being totally wowed by crass conspicuous show of wealth."

I think thats mostly American conservatism as its Protestant work ethic and demotic culture implies that a person who is rich has worked hard and therefore an example to it.

I think European conservatives are far more classier but then again their middle class isnt as well off as Americans.

Dr Van Nostrand said...

(Bloomberg can make life miserable for the ordinary White guy wanting a Big Gulp but not the Black thug who kills to get laid). "

Eh? This is the binary world you reside in? White suburban soda swilling drone vs black thug killer who kills to get laid?

Polish Chestnuts said...

"As regards health insurance. Gosh, you really need me to give you a lecture on that one? Right now we spend 15% of GDP on Healthcare. Want to explain to me where the profits to this go?"

There is a lot of money to be made from float, which is why Buffett took an interest in insurance. But actually, the main reasons our health insurance bills skyrocket are: 1. hospitals having to cover the bills of illegals who lack insurance, so they charge more to make up for it, 2. hospitals having to cover the bills of the bottom of lower classes, which is rising due to 'brownification' of the US, 3. Gov't interference (mandating your insurance policy cover everything from birth control for Sandra Fluke, to transgender surgery for Barney Frank's boyfriends, even if you are a straight single man), this includes Obamacare interference, 4. The costs of insurance for organizations to cover everyone including the chronically ill, which raises everyone's cost. The old farts at the top of the food chain at your company are paying the same for insurance that you, a healthy 25 yr old are. If insurance were broken out of the deal for part of the compensation, they would have to pay a much larger amount for it than you, which means that you aren't getting compensated fairly for it. But few 25yrs know this.

Undoubtedly there are other reasons for skyrocketing insurance costs.

Anonymous said...

I always wondered how a guy from say a public ivy with a major in accounting and a CPA certification...

There are no public Ivies.

Anonymous said...

Douthat should do a post on how this type of information is generally conveyed, given that it can't be said out loud. Do elites point to spinster aunts in mock applause? Do they just avoid certain classes without saying why?

False assumption. This type of information is not generally conveyed these days by and among Americans.

Svigor said...

Nostrand, I've never paid much attention to Taki or his mag, but the impression so caveat emptor, but the impression I always get from him is that he's straddling tongue-in-cheek with one hand, and James Bond with the other. In other words, I don't think he should be taken seriously, or wants to. When you have a big ego, that's the sort of hijinx you get up to, just for fun. It's the sort of thing that works in person, but not so much in text.

Or maybe I'm just being (a) charitable (Anglo-Saxon). He is Greek after all.

Dr Van Nostrand said...

How about discouraging kids from going to film school? You're never going to get any where with all the competition from the children of famous actors and directors."

With all the technology available , does it make any sense to go to film school?
I can see the point if you intend to go into something really technical such as editing,cinematography or special effects , but to be a director whose main talent is well managing all the talent at your disposal is a different matter altogether and its best learnt hands on.

Anonymous said...

It's pretty simple to me. These guys, this particular crew is built around pushing paper and numbers around. Reduce the numbers they get to push around, there is less to take off the top.

It's that simple. Reduce the research dollars that go to the institutions in question, and send them to an institution you like better, or at least can stomach.


So it's a problem of scale--our social institutions, including the economy, operate on too large a scale.

Solutions? Devolution of decisionmaking to states and local governments. Anti-trust measures.

But does anyone really want those things?

Anonymous said...

No it doesn't. What makes evolutionary sense is assortative mating on attractiveness aka low genetic load, preferably within your own ethnic group.

The exception is if your ethnic group spent a long time only selecting on IQ and therefore has a lot of genetic defects in other areas. In that case gene-stealing from groups with low genetic load is the best option for you - if not for them.


This (interesting) comment seems to come from a theoretical background. I would like to learn more about some of the statements you make. Could you recommend some background reading so I can understand better what you are writing?

Anonymous said...

I certainly would have liked to inherit a business more than work in my current field.

What field do you work in?

slumber_j said...

as said...

"I don't know if this has been mentioned, but guys who go to fancy schools just aren't funny and they aren't really fun loving. They aren't God-fearing either."

I dunno: all the guys I met at Harvard who went on to write for The Simpsons, King of the Hill, etc. etc. were and remain very funny, unsurprisingly. I know plenty of God-fearing types from there too...

Certainly most people who go to Harvard or wherever are bores, just as most people anywhere are bores. But the ones who are genuinely interesting in some way tend to be really, really interesting and a lot of fun to hang out with--and there are a lot of them.

Anonymous said...

I always wondered that. As an engineering major , I never really had a lot of time at my disposal to socialize- even 12 credits(in a semester system) could be very heavy.
Perhaps when the elite have degrees in humanities,psychology et al


What makes you think that engineering courses are more time intensive than courses in the humanities?

Dr Van Nostrand said...


There are no public Ivies."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Ivy

Cail Corishev said...

As a smart kid growing up in flyover country, my impression was that Harvard was for smart kids whose parents owned yachts instead of fishing boats. If that's true, then even a full-ride scholarship won't help much on the weekends when your dorm-mates are martini-bar-hopping in their Porsches while you're trying to figure out what to do with the $10/week spending money you saved up for the year from your summer job at the ice cream shop back home.

The character of Hoyt in I Am Charlotte Simmons pretty much sums up what seems to have gone wrong with the Ivy schools (and why most smart kids from the hinterlands don't aspire to them). He's not smart or an athlete, but simply a thug; he's there only because his dad (though not being an elite himself, if I recall correctly) had the money and connections to cover up his negatives and get him in. Yet the kid sees himself -- strictly due to his existence as a frat boy at Dupont, not to any past accomplishments or any intended future ones -- as a natural future ruler of society. In fact, what gets him in trouble is his refusal to wait for that to develop; he gets so full of himself that he thinks he can just start taking whatever he wants right now.

As others have said, it's not the connections he makes with his classmates at Dupont that he expects to help him. It's the metaphorical letter jacket that he's going to wear the rest of his life, which he expects to open every door and make every girl spread her legs.

Unfortunately, in the real world, it appears that too often he's right.

sunbeam said...

Anonymous said:

"No it doesn't. What makes evolutionary sense is assortative mating on attractiveness aka low genetic load, preferably within your own ethnic group.

The exception is if your ethnic group spent a long time only selecting on IQ and therefore has a lot of genetic defects in other areas. In that case gene-stealing from groups with low genetic load is the best option for you - if not for them.

This (interesting) comment seems to come from a theoretical background. I would like to learn more about some of the statements you make. Could you recommend some background reading so I can understand better what you are writing?"

I've seen this genetic load stuff on the Westhunter site, there's a link to it off the main page.

I don't know what to think of the guy. Well there are actually two of them, one is an anthropologist I think, and one is a physicist.

I don't know enough about genetics to evaluate these guys. There is a long tradition of physicists making contributions outside of their field, and a long tradition of thing falling flat on their ass trying to.

I will say you seem to find references to them in HBD articles across the net, but considering what an echo chamber it is, that might not be saying much.

Some of their stuff seems kind of screwy to me. Increased temperature (even 10 degrees C) leads to a higher mutation rate and more genetic load?

And genetic load. If you aren't "attractive" you are a disease ridden genetic mutant?

Just don't know about these guys. And with all the interesting things there are in the world to learn about I doubt I will ever spend the time to evaluate them properly.

On the upside Steve Sailer likes them, so they got that I guess.

Lionel said...

"With hookup culture being the college norm, and marriage delayed into the late 20's and early 30's amongst the professional classes, I think the whole debate is pointless."

This is true. Imagine a girl marrying right after college and then going to grad school in, say, Washington DC while her husband goes to law school in Massachusetts. Is that marriage going to last?

Young women who are investing time and energy in education towards a career are thinking about the logistics of a marriage. They've seen friends who end up being the family breadwinners because the husband followed the wife around, to her grad school and then to where she got a job. He is "sacrificing" his career for hers, but the pay-off is that she will have all the responsibility. I have 2 nieces in that position who married their boyfriends right after college. Everyone thinks they got a bad deal.

Aging Hag said...

Not surprisingly, a Jew-hater holds Patton's Jewishness against her.

Her marriage broke up because she was better-educated than her hubs. She recognized with middle-aged clarity that it's not good for a woman to come from a higher class or be better educated than hubs.

She also wrote a smart letter to young women detailing exactly what happens to a woman as she ages: the pool of applicants shrinks. For men (up to a certain age) the pool grows. This was perceptive.

And some loser Jew-hater dumps on her for that.

Jew-haters are a huge problem in the opposition community. A sensible person who is sick of the regime starts to read sites like Takimag, this site, other places, and then they just want to head to the door when they read the crazed anti-Semites.

kurt9 said...

Like John Derbyshire, Russ Douthat is stress testing his employer. We'll see if his employer responds better than NR.

Michael said...

A point made neither by Douthat nor here, but perhaps worth considering, is that intergenerational gifts are normally subject to the combined gift and estate tax. As the law now stands, there is an exemption of $13,000 per year per recipient and a lifetime exemption of $1 million per donor. Any amount over the $13,000 per recipient counts against the donor's lifetime exemption. In turn, to the extent the lifetime exemption is used for gifts, the amount of the donor's estate exempted from the tax is reduced.

However, there is one major exception to the gift tax, and that is education. Parents may spend an unlimited amount of money on the education of their children without its being treated as a taxable gift.

If Ivy League and other elite universities are indeed the vehicles for perpetuating the upper class that Douthat contends, it is in good part because of this education "loophole" in the combined gift and estate tax. Parents wishing to assure that Junior continues to live in the style to which he became accustomed as a child undoubtedly are aware that giving him a quarter-million dollar university education is a more effective way of transferring that much wealth to him than giving him a quarter of a million dollars in cash would be - purely from a tax standpoint, irrespective of educational quality, opportunities for social networking, family loyalty to a school, or other such imagined or real benefits.

The gift and estate tax exists almost entirely for redistributive purposes. It does not raise a large amount of revenue and is quite costly for government to administer. Yet I wonder how many left-wing academics who routinely complain about the skewed distribution of wealth would scream bloody murder if this particular exemption were eliminated, and the money that rich parents spend on sending their offspring to expensive private colleges became subject to the gift tax.

Svigor said...

This (interesting) comment seems to come from a theoretical background. I would like to learn more about some of the statements you make. Could you recommend some background reading so I can understand better what you are writing?

I don't know, but I'd say there's a 95% chance that the exception he's referring to (or is forefront in his mind) is Jewry.

Anonymous said...

"But too much of conservatism is being totally wowed by crass conspicuous show of wealth."

"I think thats mostly American conservatism as its Protestant work ethic and demotic culture implies that a person who is rich has worked hard and therefore an example to it. I think European conservatives are far more classier but then again their middle class isnt as well off as Americans."

I strongly disagree. American Protestant Work Ethic argued AGAINST conspicuous display of wealth. It said one should work hard and accumulate wealth because it's great to work hard and work is good in itself and because wealth allows one to use the wealth in worthy ways. This is why, even though American Anglos became richer than elites in Latin America, the former were less showy with their wealth. They wanted to look respectable and dignified, not piggish and gauche.
The moral, spiritual, and cultural elements of the Protestant work ethic essentially forbade Donald-Trumpisms, at least in public view.
We can see some of this in the Old Buckley family. Rich but mindful of appearing dignified.
The new rich culture really took off after WWII when the old cultural inhibitions wore off. Randianism and counterculture libertinism combined to create a new outlook that said it was cool for a rich person to show off like a rock star.

In a way, there's more of a connection between the Carnegies/Fords and the New Deal than one might think. Though Carnegie and Ford became very rich and didn't like big government, they still believed in the idea of making money for the overall public good. So, they set up foundations. And New Deal said the rich should pay more taxes for the national good.
And though Ford and Carnegie had big mansions, they were still mindful to be respectable to the public eye.

The new culture of the rich took off after WWII. Someone like Donald Trump would have been loathed even by the 'robber barons' of the 19th century. The whole 'greed is good' Gordon Gekko shtick was 80s, but then, Gekko's shamelessness owed as much to the 60s rise of libertinism that said "be free and don't hold anything back". So, free love, free music, free partying, and free greed. Rush Limbaugh would have been loathed by most conservatives in the 50s. But his shameless act and infantile gluttony became heroic to many 'conservatives' in the 90s.

In a way, it's the liberal rich who are carrying on the tradition of the Protestant work ethic, or at least some of it, albeit in a very twisted and perverted form. It's they who believe that being rich isn't enough. One must work hard not only to make money but to do good for the wider community. And one mustn't show off one's wealth and brag about it as such would be uncouth and vulgar--as well as attracting unwanted attention of resentment and envy.

Anonymous said...

Shhhh. It's just the rules of the game. So, just look away from the truth and pretend otherwise.

Anonymous said...

An elite liberal is a billionaire who accuses a millionaire conservative of greed.

And it's effective because the liberal billionaire says, "I don't care about money"--at least in public--while the conservative millionaire says, "I want lots more money."
So, even though the liberal billionaire has a lot more than the conservative millionaire, he sounds less greedy.

Bill said...

There are no public Ivies.

I demand more information!

Should I make fun of you for not knowing what the phrase "Public Ivies" means?

Should I make fun of you for thinking graduates of Ivies are more meritorious than graduates of Public Ivies?

Bill said...

A sensible person who is sick of the regime starts to read sites like Takimag, this site, other places, and then they just want to head to the door when they read the crazed anti-Semites.

People who come to Sailer's site for all the delicious racism are repulsed by the icky anti-semitism.

Sounds plausible!

Anonymous said...

Jew-haters are a huge problem in the opposition community. A sensible person who is sick of the regime starts to read sites like Takimag, this site, other places, and then they just want to head to the door when they read the crazed anti-Semites.

Ouch. What comments specifically do you find so objectionable?

Anonymous said...

@Bill

Should I make fun of you for thinking graduates of Ivies are more meritorious than graduates of Public Ivies?

Should I make fun of you for thinking that the term "Public Ivy" is justified? That is, for thinking that graduates of "Public Ivies" are more meritorious than graduates of Public non-Ivies?

--original poster

Anonymous said...

"Jew-haters are a huge problem in the opposition community. A sensible person who is sick of the regime starts to read sites like Takimag, this site, other places, and then they just want to head to the door when they read the crazed anti-Semites."

There are some loonies in the alt right and HBD communities. No doubt about it, so when Jews complain of certain neo-Nazi and crypto-Nazi elements, I'm inclined to agree with them. I have zero tolerance for those who deny the Holocaust or try to whitewash Hitler and etc.

So, I understand if some Jews find some elements of the alt right to be extreme and offensive. But then, even mainstream liberals have ties to the likes of Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, and Cornel West who is a professed communist ideologue(though really nothing but a shallow self-promoter), so every side has its share of extremists.

But, if we accept your criticism, you should accept ours. Where is the Jewish criticism--even among the Jewish conservatives--of the Jewish role in all the radical changes that took place in this country? Why do Jews all stick together?
How about a deal? We'll attack anyone who reeks of neo-Nazism, but you attack Jews who've given us Obama, 'gay marriage', illegal invasion, defamation of the white race, etc. And you attack them as JEWS, just as we attack bad whites as WHITES.

We'll attack our bad apples if you attack yours. But all I hear from Jewish conservatives is that we should fight Muslims and denounce Derbyshire for the honest piece he wrote about black crime.
Though Jewish conservatives attack liberalism, they downplay or ignore the fact that Jews totally dominate American liberalism. It's gotten to a point where some mulatto associated with Wright and Ayers can be president and nominate constitution-haters like Sotomayor and Kagan. But who is the real power behind Obama? American blacks? Illegal aliens? Dumb white liberals? No, it's the Jewish elite, and it's about Jewish conservatives attack liberal Jews as BAD JEWS.

Anonymous said...

"This (interesting) comment seems to come from a theoretical background. I would like to learn more about some of the statements you make. Could you recommend some background reading so I can understand better what you are writing?"

I don't know, but I'd say there's a 95% chance that the exception he's referring to (or is forefront in his mind) is Jewry.


Is there any academic literature on this?

Anonymous said...

There are some loonies in the alt right and HBD communities. No doubt about it, so when Jews complain of certain neo-Nazi and crypto-Nazi elements, I'm inclined to agree with them. I have zero tolerance for those who deny the Holocaust or try to whitewash Hitler and etc.

So, I understand if some Jews find some elements of the alt right to be extreme and offensive. But then, even mainstream liberals have ties to the likes of Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, and Cornel West who is a professed communist ideologue(though really nothing but a shallow self-promoter), so every side has its share of extremists.


Are Zionists extremists?

Discuss.

Anonymous said...

Anon @4/8/13, 6:04 AM
try http://westhunt.wordpress.com/

Anonymous said...

Thanks 5:35.

ben tillman said...

There is a lot of money to be made from float, which is why Buffett took an interest in insurance. But actually, the main reasons our health insurance bills skyrocket are: 1. hospitals having to cover the bills of illegals who lack insurance, so they charge more to make up for it, 2. hospitals having to cover the bills of the bottom of lower classes, which is rising due to 'brownification' of the US, 3. Gov't interference (mandating your insurance policy cover everything from birth control for Sandra Fluke, to transgender surgery for Barney Frank's boyfriends, even if you are a straight single man), this includes Obamacare interference, 4. The costs of insurance for organizations to cover everyone including the chronically ill, which raises everyone's cost. The old farts at the top of the food chain at your company are paying the same for insurance that you, a healthy 25 yr old are. If insurance were broken out of the deal for part of the compensation, they would have to pay a much larger amount for it than you, which means that you aren't getting compensated fairly for it. But few 25yrs know this.

Undoubtedly there are other reasons for skyrocketing insurance costs.


No kidding. The main reason -- and it is hard to believe you didn't mention this -- is that the patient doesn't pay for the services he receives. Someone else -- government or ins. co. -- does.

Svigor said...

The thing about Susan Patton that stood out for me was that she is divorced and her marriage seems to have been very unhappy with her husband always resenting her Ivy League education.

For all we know, her husband just didn't want to defer to her ideologically or listen to her uni-spawned politics. Or maybe he was just less intelligent than she; an intellectually-secure man doesn't give a rat's ass what his woman's credentials are, or how much more impressive snobs find them than his.

Not surprisingly, a Jew-hater holds Patton's Jewishness against her.

Who cares? Get over your tribe.

I have zero tolerance for those who deny the Holocaust or try to whitewash Hitler and etc.

Sacred cows are for weaklings.

Is there any academic literature on this?

I think Kevin MacDonald (CSULB prof) goes into it in his trilogy on Jews, at least, you'll get some background. But you can probably find some good material with good G-Fu. Jewish evolutionary strategy, Jewish IQ genetic defects, Jewish eugenics, Judaism eugenics, that sort of thing. Fold "conversion" in for the "gene-stealing" aspects.

Dr Van Nostrand said...

Though Jewish conservatives attack liberalism, they downplay or ignore the fact that Jews totally dominate American liberalism."

Im not familiar with all conservative Jews but the few prominent ones Im aware of such as Dennis Prager and Jonah Goldberg are very much aware and are frustrated by it. Jonah often takes to task with those leftist Jews who whine about anti communism being a cover for anti Semitism in the 40s and 50s points the disproportionate number of Jews prominent among communists.
Prager also expresses his disgust and despair at Jewish liberalism and explains as a substitute religion for secular Jews.I think he is right in ascribing to them stupidity and moral shortsightedness rather than malice.

It seems too many of these idiot Jews really dont care that much about observing Jewish customs or traditions but go through it to get some sort of ethnic cred.
Heck Jews like Jon Stewart and Thomas Friedman eat pork.

Dr Van Nostrand said...


Should I make fun of you for thinking that the term "Public Ivy" is justified? That is, for thinking that graduates of "Public Ivies" are more meritorious than graduates of Public non-Ivies?

--original poster

False equivalency. A guy with a degree in Electrical Engineering from say University of Michigan has more merit in the job market than someone with a Hispanic Lesbian studies summa cuma laude from Yale.

Anyway no one claimed those universities are actual Ivy League, it is just a term to denote their high status among public universities. Why are you so touchy about it? Do you work for the marketing department of an Ivy League?

Dr Van Nostrand said...


Ouch. What comments specifically do you find so objectionable?"

Are you kidding me? Have you READ the comments? They are like something out of the Protocols

oh lets not be too demanding. Knowing this crowd ,perhaps you do sympathize with the commenters and therefore dont see anything wrong with them.
Let us then deal with the gentile intra white bashing, there are quite a few individuals on the comments board who wish to bring the no Irish need apply policy to immigrations. Lets not even begin on their views on Southern Europeans (apparently they are not white and they are still unfairly coasting off the achievements of the ancient Greeks and Romans who were Nordic I am told)

Have these weirdos learnt nothing-once they achieve their white uptopia(Im assuming thats means just being devoid of Jews and darkies) they will just tear it apart. Whites have fought most of the bloody wars in the world history in the last 200 years alone amongst themselves with very little prodding from the Jews (and yes that includes WWII)

Dr Van Nostrand said...


I strongly disagree. American Protestant Work Ethic argued AGAINST conspicuous display of wealth. "

I agree too. What I meant was modern populist interpretation(or mistinterpretation) of the Protestant work ethic led to this type of thought process.



This is why, even though American Anglos became richer than elites in Latin America, the former were less showy with their wealth. "

Also the difference between the elites in Latin and Anglo America was that the Iberian elites came primarily to plunder and live the high life while Anglo settlers were mostly hard up families who wanted a better life.



The new culture of the rich took off after WWII. Someone like Donald Trump would have been loathed even by the 'robber barons' of the 19th century. The whole 'greed is good' Gordon Gekko shtick was 80s, but then, Gekko's shamelessness owed as much to the 60s rise of libertinism that said "be free and don't hold anything back".

As much as I admire Reagan ,one of the serious problems I had with the 80s era was the view of material wealth of a virtue in itself.

So, free love, free music, free partying, and free greed. Rush Limbaugh would have been loathed by most conservatives in the 50s. But his shameless act and infantile gluttony became heroic to many 'conservatives' in the 90s. "

I think Rush Limbaugh behaves like an ass mostly to stick it to the left.Idiot conservatives dont quite see through this and seek to emulate him because well Rush did it!
Having said that,I saw the interior of Rushs apartment that he put up for sale- it was weirdly ancien regime.


In a way, it's the liberal rich who are carrying on the tradition of the Protestant work ethic, or at least some of it, albeit in a very twisted and perverted form. It's they who believe that being rich isn't enough. One must work hard not only to make money but to do good for the wider community. And one mustn't show off one's wealth and brag about it as such would be uncouth and vulgar--as well as attracting unwanted attention of resentment and envy."


I agree to some level. However I cant imagine Carnegie,Ford Gould et al insisting that taxes on the middle class be raised because by god my taxes are so frigging low.Even robber barons were not as solipsistic as this lot.
Also while its a good thing that the liberal elites aren't flashy, it doesnt mean dressing down is a more respectable option.Millionaire and billionaires wearing hoodies and tattered jeans is objectionable on too many levels.

4/8/13, 11:15 AM

Anonymous said...

"Should I make fun of you for thinking that the term "Public Ivy" is justified? That is, for thinking that graduates of "Public Ivies" are more meritorious than graduates of Public non-Ivies?

--original poster"

False equivalency. A guy with a degree in Electrical Engineering from say University of Michigan has more merit in the job market than someone with a Hispanic Lesbian studies summa cuma laude from Yale.


Does a guy with a degree in Electrical Engineering from Michigan State have more merit in the job market than someone with a Hispanic Lesbian studies summa cum laude from Michigan?

Anyway no one claimed those universities are actual Ivy League, it is just a term to denote their high status among public universities.

What do you mean by "high status"?

Anonymous said...

But you can probably find some good material with good G-Fu.

What is "G-Fu"?

Dr Van Nostrand said...



Does a guy with a degree in Electrical Engineering from Michigan State have more merit in the job market than someone with a Hispanic Lesbian studies summa cum laude from Michigan?"

Thats not the question I asked but yes.

Anyway no one claimed those universities are actual Ivy League, it is just a term to denote their high status among public universities.

What do you mean by "high status"?"

Higher ranking ,better facilities,snob factor, better faculty etc etc

Anonymous said...

Are you kidding me? Have you READ the comments? They are like something out of the Protocols

Impossible. Steve censors most comments that challenge Judaism.

Svigor said...

Granola-Fu. I was suggesting he add search terms to his cereal.

Anonymous said...

Poison Ivy League and Patton's Ivy Leak.

Anonymous said...

"They are like something out of the Protocols"

Yes, political discourse is like the Protocols. It is so paranoid... like KKK lurking around Oberlin, rich whites sacrificially raping an innocent black woman at Duke, neo-Nazis frightening Omar Thorton so much he had shoot them evil folks, every white who opposes amnesty being a closet-nazi, every conservative who opposes 'gay marriage' being some mentally diseased and rabid phobic person. And don't forget hyseria about the war against women. And Hollywood movies that warn us that the yellows are gonna invade us and 'muzzies' are all terrorists and white slavers.

Yeah, there are too many such protocolian loonies posting such comments here! I dont know why sailer attracts such people. He must be evil.

Good thing the MSM dominated by wonderfully sane liberal Jews is far too responsible and rational to spread such hysterical and crazy paranoia.

Anonymous said...

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2011/09/how-hollywood-accounting-can-make-a-450-million-movie-unprofitable/245134/

Hollywood libs sure hate greed.

ysv_rao said...


Yes, political discourse is like the Protocols. It is so paranoid... like KKK lurking around Oberlin, "

Uh no, who said anything about that nonsense being legit?

rich whites sacrificially raping an innocent black woman at Duke,"

Sorry never bought that big white defendant scam either

neo-Nazis frightening Omar Thorton so much he had shoot them evil folks, every white who opposes amnesty being a closet-nazi,

That would not be me, I am pro limited legal immigration.

every conservative who opposes 'gay marriage' being some mentally diseased and rabid phobic person."

Once again ,not me. I dont care much for gays ,certainly not gay marriage. That libertarians are for it makes me wonder what they are smoking.


And don't forget hyseria about the war against women. And Hollywood movies that warn us that the yellows are gonna invade us and 'muzzies' are all terrorists and white slavers.

To quote a wise man-you are a pyromaniac in a field of straw men.

Your ideas of causation and relationship are severely problematic.I said that many commenters are here and anti semitic and this compelled you to accuse me of supporting every liberal crackpot idea out there.Why are you so kneejerk idiot?

Yeah, there are too many such protocolian loonies posting such comments here! I dont know why sailer attracts such people. He must be evil."

I dont know what compelled this hysterical and bizarre response but just FYI I was talking about the takimag comments board not isteves, though the latter is not free from such loons either.

Good thing the MSM dominated by wonderfully sane liberal Jews is far too responsible and rational to spread such hysterical and crazy paranoia."


Thank you for your valuable input!