Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Bainbridge on those revolting elites here. It rather appalling that elite universities practice so much discrimination against intelligent but socially unhooked up applicants (read "Asians"). OTOH a school such as Duke presumably has the right or should to practice any admissions policy it sees fit, though it is ironic that as such an infamously PC institution, they should rank as one of the worst offenders for preferring jocks and rich kids to Asians with stratospheric SAT scores. Or maybe I misunderstand what is PC -- probably I do.
But surely in the long run institutions that prefer social or monetary cachet to brains will pay a price. In a market economy, I also don't think a fancy BA gets you that far if you are not smart and hard-working. A law degree from Harvard or Yale may get you hired at a big firm, but if you don't work as hard or as well as the guy from the third tier school, nobody is going to care when bonus and partnership decisions are made.
What worries me about elitism that is not meritocracy is that as the state controls more and more of the economy for political ends, those with political connections will benefit rather than those with something valuable to sell. Elitism here stands in for something like rule by Euro-style technocrats.