Sparta Report

The Smug Lies Our Ruling Class Adores

There is longish, thoughtful piece on how the mandarins of the New Aristocracy mask their privilege over at the blog First Things.

The post, titled The Ignoble Lie and authored by Patrick J. Deneen is a scathing take on the Willful Ignorance that pervades The Ruling Class.

A goodly amount of the post is spent deconstructing last year’s Middlebury Debacle whereby author Charles Murray was effectively prevented from delivering a lecture on his book Coming Apart.

Deneen sees the Children of Privilege who attend Middlebury ($64,000 per year tuition) as the Logical Consequence of an entrenched cadre of elite who dabble in Marxist Theory while simultaneously fiercely protecting their lofty social status and gated homes.

A taste from the middle of the piece:

Our ruling class is more blinkered than that of the ancien régime. Unlike the aristocrats of old, they insist that there are only egalitarians at their exclusive institutions. They loudly proclaim their virtue and redouble their commitment to diversity and inclusion. They cast bigoted rednecks as the great impediment to perfect equality—not the elite institutions from which they benefit. The institutions responsible for winnowing the social and economic winners from the losers are largely immune from questioning, and busy themselves with extensive public displays of their unceasing commitment to equality.


Campaigns for equality that focus on the inclusion of identity groups rather than examinations of the class divide permit an extraordinary lack of curiosity about complicity in a system that secures elite status across generations. Concern for diversity and inclusion on the basis of “ascriptive” features—race, gender, disability, or sexual orientation—allows the ruling class to overlook class while focusing on unchosen forms of identity. Diversity and inclusion fit neatly into the meritocratic structure, leaving the structure of the new aristocratic order firmly in place.

This helps explain the strange and often hysterical insistence upon equality emanating from our nation’s most elite and exclusive institutions.


That the ruling class today is more prone to denounce inequality from its manicured campuses than promote among its own denizens belief in a common civic life is not a sign of its greater enlightenment and progress, but a sign of a new aristocracy that is unconscious of its own position and its concomitant responsibilities. They are deluded by an updated “noble” lie.

This is not a drive-by read.

Pour yoursel a couple fingers of The Brown Stuff and settle back for the duration.

Needless to say you should read the whole disturbing thing.

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