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Frankly, I’m a little tired of this line of argument
Posted by: McQ on Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sam Harris takes up the baton to defend elitism. Of course to do so he has to rip Sarah Palin and most of the country.
The problem, as far as our political process is concerned, is that half the electorate revels in Palin's lack of intellectual qualifications. When it comes to politics, there is a mad love of mediocrity in this country. "They think they're better than you!" is the refrain that (highly competent and cynical) Republican strategists have set loose among the crowd, and the crowd has grown drunk on it once again. "Sarah Palin is an ordinary person!" Yes, all too ordinary.
That's right, it's all about a love of mediocrity and a lack of intellectual qualifications. As I and others have mentioned previously those who think of themselves as worthy of leading us, or at least worthy of telling us what we should think, consistently believe that those who don't agree with them must be stupid or uneducated or both.

How, they wonder, could anyone even consider a non-person like Sarah Palin (who didn't have a passport until last year, lives in backwater state and didn't attend an elite university) for high elective office in this country?

I mean for heaven sake folks, look at what the elites have managed to do for us thus far: we're in the middle of a trillion dollar financial bailout to be stacked on 5 trillion in existing debt, Social Security is failing and Medicare is out of control. Our education systems stinks to high heaven. Taxes and spending are too high, thus hurting families and businesses, and likely to go higher. We have no energy policy and are at the mercy of foreign states who don't like us very much. We're also in the middle of an invasion of illegal immigrants which government seems unable to stem. Government is both too big and too intrusive while at the same time appearing totally inept, incompetent and unfocused. And the plan of at least one side is to make it bigger and more intrusive.

Yes, please another helping of that. If the elites we have can offer nothing better than that, I say bring on all the Sarah Palins we can find. They certainly can't do any worse.

So it's not that those who see hope in the type of person Sarah Palin represents are stupid or uneducated. Instead they've finally seen through the blatant lie perpetrated by the likes of Sam Harris that it takes the proper schools, the proper checkmarks and the proper ideology, er, intellect, for someone to be deemed acceptable. That's served us well to this point, hasn't it Mr. Harris?

We've seen what "acceptable" in the eyes of Harris and his ilk bring and for the rest of us, it is "acceptable" no more. Get off your high horse and broaden your horizons Mr. Harris. The country is made up of 300 million citizens and many, many of them are probably more capable of doing the job than those who graduate from "the right schools". It's about leadership, sir. Not what school you attended, which cocktail circuit you frequented and how well known you are in Washington, New York and Los Angeles.

That is business as usual. In that regard, I'm all for change. And it appears, given the reception Palin has received, so is most of the rest of the country.
 
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I didn’t realize Harris was a fan of Yale/Harvard educated GWB.
 
Written By: Is
URL: http://
Hilarious.

I have visited this site for years. And I have criticized Bush for years.

And you know what the number one defense of Bush on this site has been for years? That he went to Yale and Harvard. Time and again the wingnuts on this site have defended Bush on the grounds that he went to really good schools. How many times have I been told that he is an MBA from Harvard. Too many to count.

Hypocrisy knows no bounds.

As for Palin, she is clearly an idiot. You can say she’s not. But she is. She is a petty, little person. And she is a liar.
 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
And you know what the number one defense of Bush on this site has been for years? That he went to Yale and Harvard.
Funny, I’ve been on this site for years, and I can’t recall once that argument was used to say Bush was special.

It may have been noted in the rundown of qualifications between Bush and Kerry, but as I recall neither performed spectacularly.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
What if funny in this is the expectation we believe that elitists are actually elite in capability.

The ’elitism’ that is referred to is entirely self-delusional.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
And you know what the number one defense of Bush on this site has been for years? That he went to Yale and Harvard.


That’s nonsense and you know it. Of course honesty has never been one of your strong suits. Or context. Or intelligence. Or ...
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
It’s an awfully ironic line of argument for Mr Harris to take, considering that Obama’s inexperience is perversely touted as a qualification (he’s a Washington outsider! He’s not tied to the politics and policies of the past!) Some kinds of "ordinariness" are more equal than others, I guess.
 
Written By: James O
URL: http://
Funny, I’ve been on this site for years, and I can’t recall once that argument was used to say Bush was special.
Wingnuts have a way of "forgetting" about things.
That’s nonsense and you know it. Of course honesty has never been one of your strong suits. Or context. Or intelligence. Or ...
You are so full of sh*t and you know it.

Tell you what, McQ, you "honest" person: Search this site for MBA and Harvard and Bush. And then tell me how many hits you get.

If there is one thing I know, it is how many times Bush has been criticized on this site as an idiot and how many times wingnuts have rushed to his defense on the grounds that he went to Yale and has a Harvard MBA. It is a classic wingnuts defense.

You are a liar, McQ.
 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
Wingnuts have a way of "forgetting" about things.

But Google doesn’t. There are about 130 hits that mention the keywords Bush and Harvard on this site. It shouldn’t take you more than 10 minutes to prove that it’s the "number one defense of Bush" you’re talking about.
 
Written By: Ben
URL: http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?entry=7695
That was quick, mk. How long have you been waiting to use it? Unfortunately, your statement did not apply in the context in which it was used. I wasn’t defending Bush. No one was attacking him. No one called him stupid, and I didn’t retort that he went to Yale and Harvard, so he must be smart. I was pointing out Harris’ hypocrisy.

For Harris, intellectual qualifications are not good enough when one obtains a BS from the University of Idaho. At the same time, he has not expressed the opposite sentiment of someone who was educated at two of the supposed most elite schools in the nation. He’s trying to have it both ways, exposing himself as a partisan shill.
 
Written By: Is
URL: http://
Tell you what, McQ, you "honest" person: Search this site for MBA and Harvard and Bush. And then tell me how many hits you get.
Not my job, nitwit - you made the claim. Put up or shut up. But keep in mind what the claim you made is - it has nothing to do with how many times "MBA Harvard and Bush" can be found - you have to prove it was the "number one defense of Bush on this site for years".

Good luck.
If there is one thing I know, it is how many times Bush has been criticized on this site as an idiot and how many times wingnuts have rushed to his defense on the grounds that he went to Yale and has a Harvard MBA.
Blah, blah, blah ... you said it was the "number one defense of Bush on this site for years".

That’s a blatant lie and you know it. Now you’re left to desperately try to change the context so you’re not left hanging out there looking as stupid as you seem.

How many times have we seen you deploy this dishonest tactic over the years? Uncountable.

No sale, dimbulb.

Oh, and when you say things like this after trying to move the goalposts one more time ...
You are a liar, McQ.
... I can muster no more than a rueful chuckle as I consider the source. Projection, MK. Projection. Being called a liar by you carries absolutely no weight, no sting and has no meaning in this universe or the one you inhabit.

You’re so pathetic you’re not even worth banning, but you are fun to poke every now and then. Love the frenzied, foaming, eye-rolling, spittle inducing invective - comic relief while taking a break from reasoned and intelligent conversation.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
You know what, this is patently absurd.

I like debating with people who I don’t agree with: I find it stimulating and, to be quite honest, FUN. At the end of the day, there’s no problem with me agreeing to disagree with my fellow citizen and thanking whatever God we pray to that, at the very least, we live in a country that affords us this luxury, one which my parents never had and one that I am truly grateful for.

But one thing that is always clear is a level of respect. Yes, he debate can get heated. Hell, they can even turn into arguments. But there’s a line we never, ever cross, because to do so lowers the debate into a 3rd grade pi$$ing contest.

Mkultra, you bring absolutely NOTHING to this debate. At all. You are shallow, pedantic, nonsensical, and aren’t even very intelligent. For over a year I have never seen anything other than pure disdain and vitriol pour onto my screen preceded by your callname. You go out of your way to insult everyone who dares not agree with you, and continuously do so for no other reason than having no other arsenal in your bag; lacking any and all intellectual recourse, you resort to school yard insults in your pathetic attempts to derail the conversation.

I don’t know how Bruce or Dale or Billy or Lance or Michael put up with that nonsense, especially over a period of years. They are clearly better men than I am, because where I any of them, I would have banned your IP long ago.

And no, it has nothing to do with your ’dissent’. Feel free to disagree all you want: that’s what makes this country great. It’s this childishness you show each and every time you post. The sheer arrogance and pride you show by calling everyone in well fell swoop who disagrees with you a wingnut is nauseating and blatantly ridiculous. I bet there isn’t a single post you’ve ever made where it isn’t filled with Logical Fallacy after Fallacy, most of them Ad Hominum.

If you have nothing constructive to say, do us all a favor and don’t say it. I’m sure you feel all big and tough behind your computer screen, but don’t be a little punk. If there’s something you wont see to someone’s face because saying it would earn you a fist in your mouth then extend that basic courtesy to this place.
 
Written By: Joel C.
URL: http://
I’ve been saying it for at least two years now. MK has gone off his/her meds. There once was a time, though it seems a long, long time ago, that he/she/it would come here and actually argue. And make me think. Question my beliefs and such. But something happened along the way, and now all we get is posts like today’s. Now all I do is laugh when I read it. So sad...
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
I’ve been saying it for at least two years now. MK has gone off his/her meds. There once was a time, though it seems a long, long time ago, that he/she/it would come here and actually argue. And make me think. Question my beliefs and such. But something happened along the way, and now all we get is posts like today’s. Now all I do is laugh when I read it. So sad...
I’ve always wondered if a portion of the people who post like mkultra are assigned websites to stalk.

mkultra changed maturity level in how he argued abruptly. When confronted with this change, he backpedaled. It kind of affirms my suspicions that there are such people and in mkultra’s case the original mkultra was replaced by a newly assigned person, but he never bothered to update the last PC user’s info and just went with the name from there.
 
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
Exactly what were George Washinton’s and Abe Lincoln’s college degrees ?
 
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
Even Barack Obama, who opposed the Iraq troop surge, has finally acknowledged its success. But some of his fellow Democrats in Congress apparently remain unconvinced. Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin teamed up to block a vote on a bipartisan resolution "recognizing the strategic success of the troop surge in Iraq" and thanking our men and women in uniform for their efforts.
This is naked partisanship.
 
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
Sam Harris - leftwing "provocateur" - comes out and says:
The problem, as far as our political process is concerned, is that half the electorate revels in Palin’s lack of intellectual qualifications.
That is the punch of a hard examination of qualifications, that pins the Republican Veep candidate as being poorly qualified. It is a leave no aspersion unsmeared attack to prove that qualifications are really, really necessary in a President?

To which McQ - Republican supporter - replies with an expression of disappointment in the status quo elite referencing the economic troubles:
It’s about leadership, sir. Not what school you attended, which cocktail circuit you frequented and how well known you are in Washington, New York and Los Angeles.

That is business as usual. In that regard, I’m all for change. And it appears, given the reception Palin has received, so is most of the rest of the country.
Least qualifications are a bonus if the candidate is pro-change and not tainted as part of the Washington elite who caused this current economic crisis?

Sam Harris praises the qualities of elite performance whilst backing the rank novice, but McQ who rails against an elite that dumped the economy down the proverbial prefers the longterm Washingtonian insider. This is like anti-positive, double bluff politics.



But the prize for ultimate smackdown on your own candidate goes to MK - "Barack Obama is educated very similarly to George W. Bush".
 
Written By: unaha-closp
URL: http://warisforwinning.blogspot.com/
I’ve always wondered if a portion of the people who post like mkultra are assigned websites to stalk.
No, it happens naturally. I’ve met people like that in real life, on all sides of the political spectrum.

I say this because IMHO "You’re being paid to say that" is not a good accusation to make; it only gets leveled at me when my opponent has no argument left.

Why would anybody pay anybody for blind internet-comment advocacy when supply is sky-high and demand so very, very low? Economics 101 will tell you the going rates for such services.
 
Written By: Jeremy Bowers
URL: http://www.jerf.org/iri
Why would anybody pay anybody for blind internet-comment advocacy when supply is sky-high and demand so very, very low? Economics 101 will tell you the going rates for such services.
Jeremy, I don’t think we’re going so far as to say they are being paid... but rather they are receiving ’marching orders’. JPMs point actually struck a cord with me. There were times I could appreciate what MK was saying years ago. I remember typing ’I can’t believe I’m saying this but I agree with MK’. Of course some of the old timers would chime in with ’we’ve heard it before... wait for the melt down...’ which inevitably happened.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
Gee Mkultra, I searched for "Bush" and "Yale" and got 44 hits. When I actually read the posts (or the 39 unique hits) I find 38 references to Yale in the comments (thus not written by QandO writers necessarily), and 1 reference by McQ to a Yale study.

I didn’t read a single reference that used Bush Yale degree as a qualification.

Its a funny thing what happens when you actually bother to read something.

Putz.
 
Written By: Rich Horton
URL: http://www.iconicmidwest.blogspot.com
McQ—I think your post is more than a little ironic because of George W. Bush. Back in 2000, a central point of his campaign was that he was, unlike a certain incumbent vice-president, a common man; and all the anti-elite elements of his life (like those C grades at Yale) were signs of his mediocrity. I even remember a report on one of the nightly news broadcasts which included a clip of some man on the street who announced he intended to vote for Bush because, unlike Gore, Bush was not smarter than he (the voter) was. [My memory insists that the man actually said, "Bush is as dumb as I am", but I suspect my memory distorted the quote in this instance.]

So, I would respond to you that we’ve had eight years with a president who is allegedly an average guy, and look where that’s got us. [I use the word allegedly because I suspect Bush has more intelligence than most of his critics, and many of his supporters, give him credit for.]

Myself, I would want a person who’s smarter and more experienced than me in the office. That’s not necessarily a matter of where they went to school or anything like that, but it does require one thing that both Bush and Palin seem to lack—the impulse of intellectual curiosity, the desire to keep expanding the frontiers of one’s knowledge.
 
Written By: kishnevi
URL: http://kishnevi.wordpress.com/
So, I would respond to you that we’ve had eight years with a president who is allegedly an average guy, and look where that’s got us.
Bush, an "average guy?" What in the world have you been smoking? The fact that someone runs as an "outsider" doesn’t make them an outsider. That holds true when someone claims their an "average guy".

I certainly never characterized Bush as an average guy regardless of how he tried to present himself. Yale undergrad, Harvard MBA and son of a former president, yeah, sound just like me and millions of others, doesn’t he?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.QandO.net
uhh hello 6 of the last 8 years were controlled by "supposed" fiscal conservatives. and now Mcain all the sudden supports bailouts for AIG and regulations? i thought he was a free market capitalist. hey people will say and promise anything to get to the white house.
 
Written By: slntax
URL: http://
kishnevi: Myself, I would want a person who’s smarter and more experienced than me in the office.
No doubt you will get that.
kishnevi: That’s not necessarily a matter of where they went to school or anything like that, but it does require one thing that both Bush and Palin seem to lack—the impulse of intellectual curiosity, the desire to keep expanding the frontiers of one’s knowledge.


Bush’s reading lists that I’ve read were a lot more stimulating of intellectual curiosity than those of Clinton. Compare a book on the history of Salt to a stupid novel.

I suspect kishnevi really has no clue about Bush’s or Palin’s intellectual curiosity, and is simply repeating stupid stuff he’s read or heard.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
uhh hello 6 of the last 8 years were controlled by "supposed" fiscal conservatives.
Yes, and the current problem was created by Clinton administration f*ng up the morgage market.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
6 of the last 8 years were controlled by "supposed" fiscal conservatives
Do I really need to write this again? Democrats controlled the Senate for the first two years of Bush’s term, thanks to Jim Jeffords switching his allegiance. Democrats controlled both the Senate and the House for the last two years. So the "’supposed’ fiscal conservatives" were in control for only 4 of the last 8 years.
 
Written By: Rory Daulton
URL: http://
I’m an elitist myself, as most libertarians are. But there are two different types of elitism at play here. One is the libertarian, Jeffersonian-Nockian belief in a natural aristocracy among people. The other is the belief held by "liberals" that because of their innate superiority (the evidence of which remains elusive, although they seem to base on their more refined sense of "compassion," which translates into a willingness to spend other people’s money), they are entitled to have control of the Iron Fist and use it to pound some sense into the rest of us who are benighted enough to believe our lives and property belong to ourselves and not the State.
 
Written By: Bilwick
URL: http://
I would like to add, to the above, that while the superior individual (and I’m talking superior in the Nockian sense) invariably values education, education itself is no guarantee that the individual is in any way superior. William F. Buckley Jr. was certainly a Nockian style elitist, but he once said something to the effect that he’d rather be governed by the first 3,000 people in the phone book than the faculty of Harvard and Yale. Me, too. I’d rather be governed by Palin, who with her modest non-Ivy-League education, than by the Harvard-educated Obama. For one thing, Obama doesn’t sound all that bright when you take away his teleprompter; also, believeing that the State is our best friend is pretty much the sign of a dimdot. In the course of her education Palin seems to have at least picked up some sense of the importance of individual liberty, a lesson Obama and most of the Boston-New York-Washington axis elite never seem to have learned.
 
Written By: Bilwick
URL: http://
"You are so full of sh*t and you know it."

Ah. Obviously one of the elite showcasing his intellectual qualifications.
Well done, sir. I concede defeat to my better.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Looking at the first page of "130 hits that mention the keywords Bush and Harvard on this site" I didn’t find one which was using his education as a defense.

So, put some real facts up, or shut up.

I disagree with MK on the issues, therefore he is an idiot. No further proof is needed. Isn’t that the liberal formulation now. Devolve the campaign into name calling, and throwing mud.

And there’s a difference between being elite, and going to an Ivy school. Not the same.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Hmm shouldn’t you guys be critizing palin because of her state/federal funded education? Harvard is a private institution right? according to free markets and all that private institutions are supposed to be better because they are run more efficently and provide better services then a state/funded/operated intitution thus getting a private institution education is better than getting a public intitiuion.
 
Written By: slntax
URL: http://
I’m a libertarian and I went to City University of New York. We all have aspects of our lives we’re not proud of.

Although in fairness to me I didn’t become a libertarian until I went to CUNY’s Hunter College and met other libertarians there. Maybe Palin got her consciousness raised in the colleges she attended. She is reported to have checked out the Libertarian Party in Alaska. I’m surprised that isn’t being used against her by the Hive’s blogosphere trolls. Imagine—a major politician who at one time at least toyed with the idea that the individual’s lifer and property belongs to himself and not the State! The horror, the horror!

I guess in my case I can rationalize having the taxpayers pay the cost of my college education because I came out of—despite the faculty, certainly not thanks to them—committed to a free society, where Peter wouldn’t be forced to pay for Paul’s education. Thus Der Staat sews the seeds of its own destruction. Cosmic justic is served!
 
Written By: Bilwick
URL: http://
Just because Harvard is private doesn’t mean Obama’s education was privately funded.

The key aspect of Palin’s education ocurred outside of school. Starting up her own buisnesses, and so on. Obama doesn’t have a similar hands on eductaion where bad decisions are punished by something worse than a "gentleman’s C".

I’ll take Palin’s free market real world experience over Obama’s Harvard/community agitator/Ayer’s foundation experience anyday.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Palin may be as pro-freedom as she is (which is to say, not as much as I’d like, but scads more than the Obamessiah) because she didn’t go to one of those bigger, more prestigious universities. She escaped indoctrination into the Cult of State, whose members often go into teaching positions and see it as part of their pedagogic mission to convert the students. Not Obama, however. He seems to have been taken into the cult by his daddy, Mr. 100% Tax. It’s sad when parents brainwash their kids into cults.
 
Written By: Bilwick
URL: http://
I always find it interesting when opponents try telling you what you should be upset over.
 
Written By: Keith_Indy
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
I always find it interesting when opponents try telling you what you should be upset over.
And with Palin, they do that a lot. Perhaps because they have no real argument.

"Don’t vote for Palin—she isn’t perfect"
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://

 
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