Monday, May 23, 2011

Poor Relations

Coming from a Republican politician, other than calling someone a 'liberal', there is no epithet more damning than 'elitist'. Elitists go to Ivy League universities and are usually progressive in their thinking. Elitists are often 'intellectuals' (another bad word!). Elitists don't understand the 'real people', and certainly don't share their 'values'. In fact, elitists treat 'real people' with condescension. Elitists are what is wrong with America. They are the root of all the evils that have befallen us.

With this in mind, I wonder how today's Republicans can reconcile their professed feelings about elitists with what we know about the Founding Fathers?

Thomas Jefferson? Elitist. John Adams? Elitist. George Washington? Elitist. Madison, Mason, Hancock, and even the illegitimate Hamilton? Elitists all. Old Ben Franklin, who was the epitome of a self-made man and contemptuous of aristocrats, still feared the chaos of a mob and believed in a natural aristocracy based on merit. Elitist.

This may come as a shock to some of you, but our nation was founded by a relatively small group of elite men. None of them were saints. Many were tainted by a deep seated devotion and belief in the institution of slavery. But flaws and all, do you really think any of them would have anything but contempt for Palin, Bachmann, Paul, Ryan, Romney, and the rest of those grifters, liars, cranks, and clowns? How far would Sister Sarah's 'you betcha's' get her in a political discussion with Madison? What would happen if either of the Paul's tried to run their Ayn Rand crap by Ben Franklin? And Hamilton would dispose of the 'free marketeers' with a contemptuous laugh. In general, when dummies start talking to extremely smart people, even though it can be very entertaining for awhile, it never ends well for the dummy.

(To be fair, Jefferson might give Newt Gingrich a job as an overseer, depending on how well he could handle a bullwhip. But that doesn't mean that Newty would be welcome at the master's dinner table.)

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