Diagnosing BDS

In most ways, America is a true meritocracy. If you are smart, hard working, talented or skilled, you can succeed. America’s intellectual elites rise through this system, having gravitated toward toward academic institutions and the media for a variety of reasons. They are proud of their ascent, and they pay great homage to the system.

In stark contrast, George Bush was born into a world of class and privilege. He gained easy access to Andover, Yale, and Harvard - institutions for which our elites competed vigorously. Once there, he moved through effortlessly, mostly having a good time and not taking the whole thing very seriously.

American elites consider what he did afterward even worse. He went back to Texas, ignored his Yale and Harvard pedigree, and denied it had any real importance in his life. Even more, he actively disassociated himself from his Ivy League past, most notably during his failed run for congress.

Our media and academic elites are enraged by someone who gained such easy access to their exclusive world, who so effortlessly breezed through it, and who so completely rejected it after he was gone. He is dumb. He is spoiled. He has never accomplished anything on his own, we are told. They describe him in terms that are in direct counterpoint to how they see themselves. Clearly, that is the ultimate insult.

The contemporary derision of Bush reminds one of a bright, young coed mocking the frat boy who took her to bed last night and this morning forgot her name. Her sneering tone only thinly veils the pain of rejection.