Sunday, September 10, 2006

I never fail to be amazed by this country.

From a commenter at DeLong:
"I must say I would rather be a billionaire than a graduate of any particular institution of higher learning."

"Exclusivity" or "spite"; choose your term. Both are part and parcel of the relations of the wealthy to the masses, unless of course you prefer noblesse oblige, in other words, condescension.

You may want to argue that the rich serve a purpose, as sleazy trial lawyers do, but here as elsewhere DeLong ignores social and psychological complexity in order to focus on the clean beauty of the machine.
The rich are greedy, driven not by curiosity but by self-interest. Wealth is power, and the pursuit of one is the pursuit of the other. It's absurd for people to both defend economic Darwinism and social equality without seeing the contradiction between the two. It's like defending an economic Raj and a democratic social life.

Americans have the moral imaginations of precocious children.

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