by Victor Davis Hanson at American Greatness
Elites have always been ambiguous about the muscular classes who replace their tires, paint their homes, and cook their food. And the masses who tend to them likewise have been ambivalent about those who hire them: appreciative of the work and pay, but also either a bit envious of those with seemingly unlimited resources or turned off by perceived superciliousness arising from their status and affluence.
Yet the divide has grown far wider in the 21st century. Globalization fueled the separation in a number of ways.
One, outsourcing and offshoring eroded the rust-belt interior, while enriching the two coasts. The former lost good-paying jobs, while the latter found new markets in investment, tech, insurance, law, media, academia, entertainment, sports, and the arts making them billions rather than mere millions.
So, the problem was one of both geography and class. Half the country looked to Asia and Europe for profits and indeed cultural “diversity,” while the other half stuck with tradition, values, and custom—as they became poorer.
The elite found in the truly poor—neglecting their old union-member, blue-collar Democratic base—an outlet for their guilt, noblesse oblige, condescension at a safe distance, call it what you will. The poor if kept distant were fetishized, while the middle class was demonized for lacking the taste of the professional classes, and romance of the far distant underclass.
Second, race became increasingly divorced from class…Continue Reading