Jewish World Review Jan. 27, 2011 23 Shevat, 5771
The Loud Passing of the Old Order
By Victor Davis Hanson
http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | American reality has been turned upside down in just 20 years.
Americans no longer count on their news to be filtered and shaped by the
The old notion that America's most successful citizens are turned out by prestigious four-year universities -- the more private and
Meanwhile, the high jobless rate among recent college graduates, who are burdened by thousands of dollars in student loans, is starting to resemble the
A therapeutic college curricula and hyphenated "studies" courses have not made graduates better-read or more skilled in math and science. For many employers, the rigor of the new BA is scarcely equivalent to that of the old high school diploma. The global warming/climate change/climate chaos "crisis" has reminded Americans that careerist university Ph.Ds can be just as likely to fudge evidence and distort research as political lobbyists. The old blanket respect for academia and academics is eroding.
After the Greek financial fraud and collapse, the
Few believe that
The welfare-entitlement state is likewise a relic. Only a few political dinosaurs are calling for more spending, more entitlements and more taxes. Fairly or not, most Europeans and Americans accept that the limits of redistribution have been reached. President Obama's talk of "spread the wealth" and "fat cat" bankers has not done much to lower
Race relations are being redefined as never before. Interracial marriage, integration and immigration have made the old rubrics -- "white," "black," "brown" -- obsolete. Rigid, half-century-old affirmative action preference programs have not caught up with everyday reality. Their overseers are likewise ossified, now that millions in an interracial America do not fit into their precise racial slots, and being white -- to the degree that it can be easily defined -- is not synonymous with innate privilege. The notion that
Abroad, things are just as upside down.
In response to this topsy-turvy world, the traditional media, tenured professors, well-paid public employees, rigid ethnic and racial lobbies, unions, organized retirees, open-borders advocates and entrenched politicians all are understandably claiming that we live in an uncivil age.
We well may, but we also are seeing the waning of an old established order. And the resulting furor suggests that the old beneficiaries are not going quietly into that good night.
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Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.
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