Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rod Dreher on meritocracy

The ideology of meritocracy, though, depends on the fiction that there are no meaningful differences, in terms of nature or nurture, among us, and that we’re all starting from the same place, and have the capacities to excel equally, no matter what. It’s this ideology that can lead people to think that if you’ve failed, it must be your own fault. Sometimes it really is your own fault. It’s the must be that’s problematic.

Read the whole thing.

1 comment:

MonkeyBrad said...

That those who believe in meritocracy assume that everyone starts from the same place is something that seems to be slipped into the argument as a straw man. Where is any evidence that is notion is held?

Watching and reading about Herman Cain last night I drew the conclusion that he and I did not start in the same place, but that the more noteworthy difference between us is his work ethic. His accomplishments merit him more money than I get, more attention than I get, and more influence, and rightly so. I do not begrudge him this. The only arena in which I would not expect his merit to have right ly gained advantage over me would be before the law.

Unless there's some crazy cult of blind stupid a priori Meritocracy codified somewhere that Dreher is referencing, I think that this quote you offer is hollow and without merit itself.