Politics

The E-Word

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This monkey's gone to heaven!

Over at Splice Today, Russ Smith has a thoughtful little essay on liberal elitism in the run-up to the midterms. The last graf is not representative of the piece, but I liked it enough to share:

One last note about my own brushes with liberal elitism. In the summer of 1973, as an 18-year-old anticipating college that September, I worked in a biology lab at Princeton University. My duties including mopping the floor, feeding the rats, emptying the trays of fecal matter and, once the students were finished with their animal experiments, disposing of the critters. One afternoon, I had to dispatch a bunch of monkeys and cats—using chloroform—outside the building near the garbage containers. It caused a stir among students milling about, and a number of them harassed me, yelling, "Animal killer!" It was a very weird moment: young men and women, just a few years older than myself, attacking a minimum-wage worker for doing his job, rendered further ironic by the fact that some of the protesters were, in fact, the very same people who were conducting the experiments on the animals. That's elitism.

Similar thoughts (not about monkey-murdering, but escalating liberal loathing pre-November) from James Bowman and Trevor Butterworth. A different but also interesting take from Anne Applebaum, with dissent from Jonah Goldberg.

As a longtime refudiator of elite anti-elitism, I don't get too excited about this stuff, aside from loathing political consensus most everywhere it crops up.

All kinds of interesting meditations on populism and elitism in the Reason archive.