Skip to comments.America’s New Mandarins: Paths to power & success are narrowing So's the worldview of the powerful
Posted on 02/22/2013 10:14:51 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
Yesterday, I wrote about the silliness of requiring a file clerk to have a college degree. This morning, a friend sent me the following note about the narrowing of opportunity in modern America:
Random thought inspired by the NYT article re: requiring BAs for everything and your post, especially the note about your IT team and their varied backgrounds, which is far less likely to be true today.
It seems to me that a similar version of that narrowing-entry option is occurring in many fields
You've written in the past about how the top banks have steadily narrowed the pool of candidates whom they'll consider - e.g., only 5-6 schools will even be looked at. A similar phenomenon has been occurring in law as well, and not just post-08 . . . even before the recession.
Not sure I have a handle on the larger meaning of it all: it just seems like a generalized phenomenon to me that entry pathways are narrowing all over
He also pointed me to a telling passage in Diary of a Very Bad Year, Keith Gessen's interviews with a hedge-fund manager:
HFM: Im sure today I would never get hired.
HFM: Yeah, it would be impossible because I had no background, or I had a very exiguous background in finance. The guy who hired me always talked about hiring good intellectual athletes, people who were sort of mentally agile in an all-around way, and that the specifics of finance you could learn, which I think is true. But at the time, I mean, no hedge fund was really flooded with applicants, and that allowed him to let his mind range a little bit and consider different kinds of candidates...
(Excerpt) Read more at thedailybeast.com ...
Yep. Shining a light on exactly who these elites are.
Know thy enemy.
From the article ..... “...But the people entering journalism, or finance, or consulting, or any other “elite” profession....”
She considers journalism an “elite” profession? Even though she used quotes around the word “elite”, the very fact that she included journalism among the elite is very telling and is probably an opinion shared by most in the main-stream media.
I guess that’s why we have so many bubble heads (who have highly over inflated senses of their self worth) such as Soledad O’Brien annoying us today from the media.
Charles Murray at Cato has trumpeted this BA “bubble” too.
I can’t shake the similarities with the Komsomol and how communists sweep the single-minded into power. No critical thinking skill, they were outwitted by the most simple of folk.
endthematrix: “I cant shake the similarities with the Komsomol and how communists sweep the single-minded into power.”
But that’s not entirely true, and that’s not what the article said either. The author consistently made the point that the new American Mandarins are generally quite intelligent. I don’t doubt that many of the communist elite were similarly intelligent people. They may not have much experience outside of their isolated world and they’re generally lacking in wisdom (in my opinion), but that doesn’t mean they weren’t intelligent.
That’s the problem. There’s a mindset in America that these people have the answers, because they’re generally well educated and smart. Civilization, however, is far, far more complex than most of these leaders admit. It takes a great deal of audacity (and faith!) to believe, like President Obama, that he can change the American system into something better. No person or group of people, no matter how talented, can do that, and the more they try, the more they’re going to muck things up.
These folks apparently think they have the answers. They don’t even know the right questions!!!
A lot of today’s college graduates can’t even do good filing work. They lack employable skills or reliable work habits. (Maybe they can go on the dole as “community organizers” to sign everyone else up on the dole, too?)
My apologies. I thought you wrote “simple minded” in your post, not single minded. Yeah, the commies were single minded but most assuredly not simple minded.
A few observations based on fifty years of experience:
1. An Ivy League degree may open doors, but once you’re in, it’s all in the performance; a grad from a state school will outshine an Ivy Leaguer if he knows his stuff, gets the job done, and applies himself.
2. Many, if not most, of the self-made millionaires (not heirs) in the United States are hard working guys who put in long hours, did the job well, and scratched it all out for themselves. It has little or nothing to do with education and a lot to do with energy and application.
3. A first-rate auto mechanic, electrician, or plumber can write his own ticket, and will make more money in his lifetime than a second-rate exec. The former are as scarce as hen’s teeth, the latter all over the place at a dime a dozen.
Just a few facts when thinking about college and what sort of class ring you’ll wear.
I wrote about the silliness of requiring a file clerk to have a college degree
No, the idiocy is when affirmative action rears it’s ugly head and a person of color with less or no experience gets the job over someone with a college degree, there I fixed it
That’s true. But America is churning a diploma industry at the expense of education. And it has trickled down to middle school. And could be debated it’s the whole state system.
I think there’s something to say about national standardized testing within this context as well. Education (classical) isn’t about facts for a test, it’s about applying information to solve problems.