Ignorami and Elitists


General Assembly Democrats

Once upon a time, liberal opinion leaders deemed that the lack of a college education made a politician a “man of the people.” As an example of how inessential a sheepskin was, they often  pointed to the performance of President Harry S. Truman, architect of post-World War II containment policy of the Soviet Union. But times have changed and some have decided that the lack of a college degree disqualifies Wisconsin Governor and Republican presidential hopeful Scott Walker from the White House. Walker, it turns out, completed only three years of college before taking a full-time job. The lack of that essential fourth year of study justifies describing him as a “drop out,” with all the loaded connotations that phrase entails, and raises strong concerns about his fitness for the top spot.

I find it fascinating that liberals, who profess to be tribunes of the common man, consider a bachelor’s degree to be such a critical credential for high office — and the more elite and rarefied the institution, the better qualified the candidate.


General Assembly Republicans

Which brings me to the Bacon’s Rebellion chart of the day, purloined from the StatChat blog. Drawing from Washington Post data, Luke Juday has created an interactive chart allowing readers to compare the educational qualifications of Virginia legislators.

The data shows that Republican legislators are more likely than Democrats to have not attended college. That gives the Dems ammunition to portray the GOP as a gang of barely literate fools. On the other hand, the data also buttresses the Republican portrayal of the Dems as out-of-touch elitists.

As our friend Don the Ripper might conclude, “Maybe they’re both right.”


There are currently no comments highlighted.

14 responses to “Ignorami and Elitists

  1. Liberals as straw men elitists? Pretty weak premise.

  2. I think you are self-flagellating yourself on yet another strawman.. which really betrays you in terms of giving away what you spend time reading…

    you may recall that some of the major technology companies were started by drop-outs in garages and basements and that gives hope to many that opportunity is not entirely predicated on years of college.

    but one thing is for sure – you have had to received a pretty good K-12 education to be able to read, write, do math, understand science and articulate them as a skill to deal with real world issues.

    You might find some of the chattering idiots on MSN blathering along these lines just as you find the FAUX news idiots blathering their flavor on non-sense about a Muslim POTUS and the earth being 6000 years old, conspiracy theories and other wonderful ignorati-isms.

  3. I also love painting with large brush strokes…

  4. Maybe I listen to MSNBC too much. They’ve had fun mocking Scott Walker. Maybe I should watch Fox News instead.

    • I give them equal time (and more than I should) because I want to know both sides loony positions… chapter and verse.. I also have little or no truck with the green-weenies…

      but the Walker stuff is the left’s version of some of the foolishness over Bengazi , IRS and Hillary emails.. fast & furious (remember that?) , “he doesn’t love America”.. yadda yadda .. .. O’Reilly is a pompous ass…but Maddow drones on and on herself some nights.

  5. I present liberal state senator Barbara Favola who claims Medicaid expansion will not cause an increase in ER visits that occurred in Oregon after Medicaid expansion because Virginia would have a managed care plan, even though Oregon has a managed care plan for its Medicaid-covered population. Just believe and magic happens!

    I have no problem with people arguing for a policy position, but to make claims that have been contradicted in fact is a bit over the top. Yet, the self-appointed liberal elite, most especially the “fourth-rate” editorialists at the Post, give her a pass.

    If she were held to Harry Truman’s standard, Senator Favola would be banished from the Kitchen.

    • TMT -you’re holding on to the Oregon stuff when newer stuff has come to the fore that shows dramatic differences between charity care in states that have expanded Medicaid.

      please get the updated info and comment on that – also.

      you also miss the point – it’s not just ER visits. It’s charity care once past the ER and into the hospital.

      what is being attempted is to move the subsidies from paying for after-the illness ER/Charity care to primary care in hopes that people will see a doctor BEFORE their disease advances un-detected and the Primary care doc will find it and treat it. One of these diseases is rampant in our society – it’s called Diabetes Type II and if detected early, it can be treated and managed but if not detected – massive and ungodly expensive treatment is required for cardiovascular damage – open heart surgery, transplants, other organ failures – kidney’s, liver, amputations – all – paid for by charity care which is in-turn paid for by people who have insurance – and taxpayers.

      deal with the facts – guy – all of them – not just the one’s that appeal to your own bias?

      this thing about the “press” is totally bogus also. Have you ever heard of the Washington Examiner or “The Hill” or “Politico”, The Daily Caller, Red State, Brietbart, etc, etc, etc?

      • Larry, Senator Favola made a public statement that Medicaid expansion would save money for taxpayers and premium payers because it will reduce expensive ER visits. I asked her to explain Washington and Oregon, where Medicaid expansion resulted in more ER visits and higher costs. She replied that cannot happen in Virginia because the proposed expansion would require managed care and prior permission from the PCP before other services, including ER visits, could be used.

        But now we know, both Washington and Oregon also had managed care plans in place, but such a “control” was insufficient to prevent the very thing that liberals said would not happen.

        My question is legitimate – what language in the proposed Virginia legislation will prevent the results obtained in Washington and Oregon. Senator Favola refuses to answer this question. I wonder why!!! LoL.

        Why should she and the rest of the Medicaid expansion supporters get a pass on this fundamental question. All you want to do is change the question. Otherwise stop claiming Medicaid expansion will result in fewer ER visits and lower costs. And if liberals are wrong on this claim, why shouldn’t the public think they are necessarily right on the other claims? The truth is Medicaid expansion will be more costly and liberals don’t want to admit it.

        • TMT – Do me a favor and read this then come back and tell me your thoughts:

          Impact of Medicaid Expansion on Hospital Volumes
          Executive Summary
           The Medicaid proportion of patient volume at hospitals in states that expanded Medicaid increased substantially in the first quarter of 2014. At the same time, the proportion of self-pay and overall charity care declined in expansion-state hospitals.
           Medicaid, self-pay and charity care showed no change outside normal variation for hospitals in non-expansion states in 2014.
           The increase in Medicaid volume, which occurred only in expansion states, is due to Medicaid expansion. The parallel decrease in self-pay and charity care shows that previously uninsured patients are now enrolled in Medicaid.


        • TMT – The basic premise of the Medicaid Expansion is to make it easier for people who don’t have insurance to use primary care – so that disease can be detected earlier – and treated rather than not treating it .. having it progress to much more serious illness THEN they go to the ER –

          but what you’re missing (on purpose I think) is that once to the ER – they don’t just go back home. They get admitted to the hospital. They have to have open-heart surgery or start getting dialysis, or a liver transplant – and you are paying for all of this – way beyond that ER visit.

          So it’s not just the ER visits that are the issue.

          It’s the costs of Medical care that you and I are paying in our insurance premiums and as taxpayers that is being spent on trying to treat massively expensive diseases that progressed untreated until that person finally went to the ER.

          You seem to focus on “gotcha” type questions you ask of political folks as if their response actually represents reality rather than their own personal views – which may well be just as uninformed as others.

          It might turn out that the premise behind the Medicaid expansion fails – I don’t think so – I think the data is compelling that it’s working but let’s just say for the sake of argument that you will be correct and it will fail.

          where does that leave you?

          the only other alternative, to this point, that I’ve ever heard from you and other opponents, but never elected officials – is to repeal EMTALA.

          With all this talk of “REPEAL” – I’ve never heard one GOP politician – not one – say that EMTALA should also be repealed.

          so where does that leave folks like you on this issue?

          I do not, have never thought, ObamaCare was the best thing since sliced bread but I also don’t think Medicare is either nor is Employer-provided health-care which has led to the problems we have – none of them are “sliced bread” just as virtually nothing in our society from roads to education is perfect and optimized.

          Our health care costs are twice as high as any other country on Earth and at the same time – our longevity puts us down a notch from OECD countries more on par with developing and 3rd world countries

          which should be no real surprise since people without insurance, do not get treated until their disease advances then we all pay big bucks to try to save them but it’s often too late.

          so this is how we do business in this country on health care.

          I’m fine with other approaches that work . we don’t have to be like Europe or even Japan or Singapore.. but we can’t stay where we are either and util I see something more from opponents – their role is one of obstruction and even destruction .. a tearing down – not reform or fixing – just status quo, gridlock and even “repeal” with not replace vandalism.

          if you don’t like MedicAid then come up with a better approach. Otherwise one can legitimately presume that you’re really not interested in fixing it – even though it’s costing you money.. ..

          when we get to that point – I’m flummoxed. I cannot imagine knowing that we have really serious issues but we just stand by and do nothing.

          that’s not a “liberal” attitude. that’s seeing a broken traffic signal and wanting to fix it and there are opponents to fixing it … justleave it alone because it will cost money to fix it, that’s how I see this.

  6. Republicans only have themselves to blame. They’ve come up with the “bumper sticker” strategy….just shout “tax cuts cause prosperity”, “pro-life”, “pro-gun”, “deport”, etc.

    The problem is that they’ve allowed themselves to be painted into this box in an effort to placate “the base.”

    You talk to 10 Republican legislators or Congressmen in private….probably 9 of them will tell you how silly they have to act. These guys aren’t Jim Bacon or Don the Ripper: able to make cogent and intellectual cases for conservative positions, yet also able to articulate the need for certain government services. These guys have to spew twaddle in public (and vote that way) for fear of “being primaried.”

    There’s not a thoughtful person in this country that isn’t worried about inequality. There isn’t a thoughtful person in this country that thinks simply “cutting taxes” will lead to prosperity. Public policy issues are complicated. Yet the GOP has insisted on dumbing down every issue into the bipolarity of “government” v. “anti-government.”

    If Republican politicians were just honest and didn’t feel the need to play dumb, they wouldn’t be in this position. But they have created a perception of not being the brightest candle on the cake with their desire to placate “the base.” Thus, when independents may already be skeptical of the GOP’s intellectual rigor, they may be even more skeptical of a GOPer without a college degree as President.

  7. Before moving on to the meat, the Alabama Shakes are releasing their second album in April and if their freshman effort and this new song are any indication it’s going to be great.


    Anyway, moving on…

    “Once upon a time, liberal opinion leaders deemed that the lack of a college education made a politician a ‘man of the people.'”

    When was this? Was it before 1965? I’m showing my youth with the following statement, but I’ve been following politics and international events since forever – I had the Topps’ Operation Desert Storm trading card set when I was in elementary school – and I have never heard Democrats or liberals advocate for a candidate without a college education as if lack of such made them simpatico with “common folk.” I’m not saying it never happened, but if you could point to some examples I’d be glad to see them.

    In my experience it’s the Republicans claiming to be for the common folk and castigating their opponents as ponderous blowhards (See Gipper v. Mondale), emotionless wonks (Bush v. Dukakis), indecipherable dorks (Frat Boy v. Gore), effete nerds (C-Plus Augustus v. Kerry) or eggheads (Everyone v. Stevenson). That is, of course, when they aren’t demanding to see college transcripts to attempt to delegitimize a black Democrat who may also have been born in Kenya.

    “But times have changed and some have decided that the lack of a college degree disqualifies Wisconsin Governor and Republican presidential hopeful Scott Walker from the White House.”

    Who? Howard Dean? Anyone else?

    ” The lack of that essential fourth year of study justifies describing him as a ‘drop out,’ with all the loaded connotations that phrase entails, and raises strong concerns about his fitness for the top spot.”

    Is that you talking or is that you putting words in the mouths of straw liberals? Why the scare quotes? He is a drop out. The term isn’t loaded, it’s an accurate reflection of what he did.

    “I find it fascinating that liberals, who profess to be tribunes of the common man, consider a bachelor’s degree to be such a critical credential for high office — and the more elite and rarefied the institution, the better qualified the candidate.”

    Again, who is saying this? And which side shouted from the hilltops how awesome it was going to be to have the first MBA president?

    “That gives the Dems ammunition to portray the GOP as a gang of barely literate fools.”

    Is that what happens? Can you point to a Virginia election where the Democratic candidate called a Republican candidate without a college degree unqualified because they lacked a degree? Is it the lack of a college education that causes Democrats to castigate Republicans or is it the Republican’s insistence on playing to the anti-intellectualism in America – first noted by de Tocqueville and exposed in the 20th century by Hofstadter – by proclaiming to “not believe” in things like evolution, by claiming tidal motion to be an unproven mystery and by not understanding that swallowing a camera pill will not let you perform a pregnancy exam?

    “On the other hand, the data also buttresses the Republican portrayal of the Dems as out-of-touch elitists.”

    Is that what getting a college degree means? That you’re automatically elite and out of touch? Are there any recent politicians or pundits who have displayed this legendary remove from terra firma?

  8. You folks should like this – The College Drop Out Hall of Fame:

  9. The scary thing isn’t that Walker dropped out, it’s that Biden graduated.

Leave a Reply