Wednesday, September 05, 2012
Twilight of the Elites: America After Meritocracy by Christopher Hayes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A sobering look at the way meritocracy fails everyone except, of course, the rich, who are often not those of the highest merit. This is one of the few books I've read recently that has led me to jot down ideas for things that need future investigation. One in particular has to do with the conservative mindset (as identified by Joss and others) and indeed whether we have the relationship between conservativism and wealth backwards; that is, conservatives become plutocrats because they are psychologically structured (by genetics or upbringing) to pursue the ouroboros of endless acquisition, rather than the wealthy simply tending to conservatism because it makes rational sense to do so.
I also saw clear connections between this book and [a:Rachel Maddow|4085286|Rachel Maddow|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1329885343p2/4085286.jpg]'s [b:Drift|13606169|Drift|Rachel Maddow|http://www.goodreads.com/assets/nocover/60x80.png|17113518] and [a:Lawrence Lessig|25159|Lawrence Lessig|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1280016402p2/25159.jpg]'s [b:Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress -- and a Plan to Stop It|12062331|Republic, Lost How Money Corrupts Congress -- and a Plan to Stop It|Lawrence Lessig|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1318671917s/12062331.jpg|16768310], but that's not all that surprising given that Hayes works with Maddow and was a fellow at Harvard under Lessig's sponsorship. I would recommend all three books, since really they all address the same core problem, from different points of view: the ways in which our government's leaders become detached from the people they govern.
I borrowed this from the library to read, but I think I'm going to need to buy a copy because I want to write notes in it (something I rarely ever do) and I can't do that with a library copy.
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Posted by Kelly Martin at 10:55 AM