John Kerry, GOP Elites, and the Embarrassing Ruling Class - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
John Kerry, GOP Elites, and the Embarrassing Ruling Class
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The headline was stark: 

John Kerry: Republican Primary Race Is ‘An Embarrassment’

“They don’t know where it’s taking the United States of America.”

 The HuffPo version of this it-went-everywhere story said this:

Secretary of State John Kerry said the Republican presidential primary is “an embarrassment.”

During an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Kerry said foreign leaders are “shocked” by the rhetoric used in the race, particularly anti-Muslim statements.

“They don’t know where it’s taking the United States of America,” Kerry said. “It upsets people’s sense of equilibrium about our steadiness, about our reliability, and to some degree I must say to you, some of the questions, the way they’re posed to me, it’s clear to me that what’s happening is an embarrassment to our country.”

Wow. And there it is. A member of the Ruling Class consults his fellow global members of the Ruling Class and together they solemnly agree that yes, in fact:

“….it’s clear to me that what’s happening is an embarrassment to our country.”

A more perfect example of absolute ground-zero cluelessness would be hard to produce.

Let’s refresh yet again that definition of “the Ruling Class” as astutely provided by Professor Angelo Codevilla, a professor emeritus of international relations at Boston University in his classic American Spectator article turned into a book (with a Rush Limbaugh foreword): The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can do About It. Says Codevilla, in a pluperfect description of Kerry and all those foreign leaders who agree with him that the GOP presidential primary is “an embarrassment”:

Today’s Ruling Class, from Boston to San Diego, was formed by an educational system that exposed them to the same ideas and gave them remarkably uniform guidance, as well as tastes and habits. These amount to a social canon of judgments about good and evil, complete with secular sacred history, sins (against minorities and the environment), and saints. Using the right words and avoiding the wrong ones when referring to such matters — speaking the “in” language — serves as a badge of identity. Regardless of what business or profession they are in, their road up included government channels and government money, because as government has grown, the boundary between it and the rest of American life has become indistinct.… 

[The Ruling Class] has defined itself by the presumption of intellectual superiority…. This presumption is key to understanding our bipartisan Ruling Class. Its first tenet is that its members are the best and brightest, while the rest of Americans are retrograde, racist, and dysfunctional unless properly constrained. 

Notice, again, this headline in the New York Times about Secretary Kerry: 

 John Kerry: Republican Primary Race Is ‘An Embarrassment’

And notice this headline the other day from the Times about certain GOP voters:

Most Republicans Feel Embarrassed by Campaign, Poll Says 

Notice anything? Yes, indeed. Both John Kerry and “Most Republicans” are, according to the New York Times (itself the very embodiment of the Ruling Class), “embarrassed” by the GOP campaign.

Hmmmm. Does this say something about Donald Trump — or about the bipartisan Ruling Class?

If there was anybody who was set to be a lifetime member of the Ruling Class, that would be Donald Trump. Son of a wealthy family, educated at the Ivy League’s Wharton School of Finance, whatever else Trump was at the beginning of the 2016 campaign a privileged member of “the Ruling Class” would certainly be at the top of the list. And yet? And yet, there is the similarly privileged John Kerry suggesting that Trump — not to mention the entire GOP campaign — is an embarrassment.

Where have we heard this before? Where has a certifiable member of the Establishment been called out as a “traitor to his class”? Try right here, as well described by H.R. Brands in his book Traitor to His Class: The Privileged Life and Radical Presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. What Brands was historically spot on about is that FDR was in fact seen by the Establishment of the day as a “traitor to his class.” As in his Establishment class. FDR, went the tale, abandoned his Eastern Upper Class Establishment for working class Americans and the poor. This, precisely, is what Ronald Reagan was essentially accused of. Reagan had become Hollywood royalty… once a liberal, visible supporter of Harry Truman and Hubert Humphrey, a liberal union president (the Screen Actors Guild)… Reagan’s transition to conservative drew instantly the kind of left-wing wrath endemic to being a “traitor” to one’s liberal class. Let us not forget either the wrath directed at George W. Bush. The scion of an upper crust Establishment New England family that had gone Texan, Bush was famously more Midland than Yale and Harvard-land. He was… by lefty standards if not conservative standards… a decided conservative. Which, but of course, infuriated his Class. Thus the pillorying of Bush 43 by every leftist outlet out there.

With this history in mind, one can only ask the obvious. Why, exactly, is the current GOP presidential campaign somehow an “embarrassment” for America per John Kerry? Why do the Republicans in this Times poll “feel embarrassed” by the GOP presidential campaign? 

The answer is obvious. All involved are in their own own fashion members of the bipartisan “Ruling Class.” They are, more or less, 

… formed by an educational system that exposed them to the same ideas and gave them remarkably uniform guidance, as well as tastes and habits. These amount to a social canon of judgments about good and evil, complete with secular sacred history, sins (against minorities and the environment), and saints. Using the right words and avoiding the wrong ones when referring to such matters — speaking the “in” language — serves as a badge of identity. Regardless of what business or profession they are in, their road up included government channels and government money, because as government has grown, the boundary between it and the rest of American life has become indistinct.…

[The Ruling Class] has defined itself by the presumption of intellectual superiority.… This presumption is key to understanding our bipartisan Ruling Class. Its first tenet is that its members are the best and brightest, while the rest of Americans are retrograde, racist, and dysfunctional unless properly constrained.

Thus educated, thus schooled, these people could not possibly have another view other than that Trump is an “embarrassment” to the country (Kerry) or the party itself (the GOP poll.) Why? Because they are all “… formed by an educational system that exposed them to the same ideas and gave them remarkably uniform guidance, as well as tastes and habits.”And not to put too fine a point on it, so are those global colleagues of Kerry’s.

As the 2016 election unfolds, the Kerry remark and that Times GOP poll are unsubtle reminders that underlying everything else in this election is the issue, again per Professor Codevilla, of the Ruling Class versus the Country Class. 

Where is America? We shall see.

Jeffrey Lord
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Jeffrey Lord, a contributing editor to The American Spectator, is a former aide to Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp. An author and former CNN commentator, he writes from Pennsylvania at jlpa1@aol.com. His new book, Swamp Wars: Donald Trump and The New American Populism vs. The Old Order, is now out from Bombardier Books.
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