The Yeomanry & The Clerisy

I recently stumbled upon this excellent article in The Daily Beast from last October, and have never read a better description of the emerging class structure in this country, as unfortunate as that is. You may remember the old saying – as California goes, so goes the country – well let’s hope that this one time, we don’t follow California’s lead:

The OligarchsThe swelling number of billionaires in the state, particularly in Silicon Valley, has enhanced power that is emerging into something like the old aristocratic French second estate. Through public advocacy and philanthropy, the oligarchs have tended to embrace California’s “green” agenda, with a very negative impact on traditional industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, energy, and construction. Like the aristocrats who saw all value in land, and dismissed other commerce as unworthy, they believe all value belongs to those who own the increasingly abstracted information revolution than has made them so fabulously rich.

The  ClerisyThe Oligarchs may have the money, but by themselves they cannot control a huge state like California, much less America. Gentry domination requires allies with a broader social base and their own political power. In the Middle Ages, this role was played largely by the church; in today’s hyper-secular America, the job of shaping the masses has fallen to the government apparat, the professoriat, and the media, which together constitute our new Clerisy. The Clerisy generally defines societal priorities, defends “right-thinking” oligarchs, and chastises those, like traditional energy companies, that deviate from their theology.

The New SerfsIf current trends continue, the fastest growing class will be the permanently property-less. This group includes welfare recipients and other government dependents but also the far more numerous working poor. In the past, the working poor had reasonable aspirations for a better life, epitomized by property ownership or better prospects for their children. Now, with increasingly little prospect of advancement, California’s serfs depend on the Clerisy to produce benefits making their permanent impoverishment less gruesome. This sad result remains inevitable as long as the state’s economy bifurcates between a small high-wage, tech-oriented sector, and an expanding number of lower wage jobs in hospitality, health services, and personal service jobs. As a result, the working class, stunted in their drive to achieve the California dream, now represents the largest portion of domestic migrants out of the state.

The YeomanryIn neo-feudalist California, the biggest losers tend to be the old private sector middle class. This includes largely small business owners, professionals, and skilled workers in traditional industries most targeted by regulatory shifts and higher taxes. Once catered to by both parties, the yeomanry have become increasingly irrelevant as California has evolved into a one-party state where the ruling Democrats have achieved a potentially permanent, sizable majority consisting largely of the clerisy and the serf class, and funded by the oligarchs. Unable to influence government and largely disdained by the clerisy, these middle income Californians are becoming a permanent outsider group, much like the old Third Estate in early medieval times, forced to pay ever higher taxes as well as soaring utility bills and required to follow regulations imposed by people who often have little use for their “middle class” suburban values.


14 thoughts on “The Yeomanry & The Clerisy

  1. J. R. Babcock (@JRBabcock) April 24, 2014 / 11:23 pm

    I’ve always wondered where movie script writers get the ideas for the various dystopian scenarios in recent movies. It could just be that art may just be slightly ahead of reality.

    • Cluster April 25, 2014 / 7:48 pm

      Lets just hope it doesn’t get to the Mad Max stage

    • Cluster April 26, 2014 / 9:14 am

      It’s an interesting book, but ultimately Piketty’s advocation of global taxes and punishing inheritance among other remedies smacks of Communism, and I hope you don’t believe that is the way to go. In a statist, Oligarchial or Communistic governed country, wealth is static and accumulated at the top and remains at the top. In a Capitalist economy, wealth is fluid, and people move in and out of the classes. In either case, wealth is never fair – that’s the “big lie” of the left that you have bought into.

    • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 1:49 pm

      Of course something like this would be on casper’s reading list. What could have more appeal to such as casper than a book written by a French “economist” about income inequality, reviewed by Paul Krugman? To someone like casper, this would be an embarrassment of riches—-top it off with being about the new buzzwords of RRL politics, “income inquality”, which although inane and meaningless is still better than the constant chant of RACISM !!!

      Chances are he will regurgitate this swill to us one of these days, touting the Identity meme (“…but he’s an ECONOMIST !!!”) and the NYT cred of Krugman (…but he’s an ECONOMIST !!!! AND A NOBEL PRIZE WINNER!!! And we all know how meaningful a Nobel Prize is !!!! ) and of course the fawning over Europeans thing we find so pathetic, simply gazing off across the decades of history proving these economic theories to be utter failures and pretending they (the proofs that Leftist economics don’t work) don’t exist.

    • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 1:56 pm

      One thing I have noticed about the “income inequality” howlers is the consistency of the belief that this is bad, it is proof of something malignant, it is caused by other people, it has to be solved by other people, and it has to use other peoples’ money.

      I have yet to see casper offering to average his pay out with that of the lunchroom ladies, so they can all have equal incomes. Krugman is taking a quarter of a million dollars a year for nine months put in what is acknowledged as a light work load, teaching one seminar at the end of the nine months, to study income inequality.

      I would not be surprised to see his name as one of the “thought leaders” explaining to the janitors at his school, who work long hours actually doing something, that the fact they make about 10% of what he makes is proof of the selfishness and greed of others, and THIS MUST BE STOPPED !!!!—-but not with his quarter mil.

      (But he can lecture them on gaining peace of mind and satisfaction with non-material things, on his way to his car and driver to catch a $500 lunch with his editor.)

      • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 2:07 pm

        My mistake—Krugman is only going to make $225,000 for his nine-month stint: (emphasis mine)

        “New York Times author and liberal economist Paul Krugman has been offered a position as a distinguished scholar for a nine-month stint at the City University of New York’s Luxembourg Income Study Center, which researches income inequality.

        Krugman has also been nominated to become a distinguished professor for LIS, which would bring with it a hefty $225,000 salary. (Krugman’s nomination was first reported by Gawker.)

        That means that Krugman, while working to research income inequality, will earn nearly five times the median household income of residents of New York City — for nine month’s work.

        In addition to the lavish salary that most of us 99-percenters could only dream of, Krugman was also offered an additional $10,000 for research and travel, up to $10,000 for moving expenses and his own graduate assistant or two.

        Oh, and Krugman “will not be expected to teach or supervise students,” for that moolah. Instead, he will be “asked to contribute to” building up LIS’s “inequality initiative and to play a modest role in our public events.”

        But that harsh workload will intensify in Krugman’s second year of employment, when he will also be required to “teach one seminar per year.” ”

        Along with a sarcasm font, we clearly need a satire font and one that indicates eye rolls, if we are going to wade into Leftist hypocrisy and the blissful cluelessness of the elites, whose nannies and au pairs are probably not even making minimum wage, whose houses are cleaned by immigrants, who frequent the fanciest restaurants to sip the priciest wines and nibble on the latest elegant culinary creations while bemoaning the fact that some people make more than others and just fretting fretting FRETTING about what other people should do about it.

      • Cluster April 26, 2014 / 2:21 pm

        A $225K bullshit think-tank job to study INCOME INEQUALITY!!! LMAO. Like you said – you can’t make this up. I wonder how much tuition for average students will have to increase in the industry of BIG EDUCATION to pay for these salaries? Salaries of people not even in the class room.

  2. Cluster April 26, 2014 / 11:49 am

    Two members of the Clerisy offer their hilarious opinions on how the New Serfs shouldn’t worry about money and power, and instead, enjoy the simple things in life – like fine linens and expensive lunches:

    The website for the conference hosted in New York City on April 24th and 25th invites viewers to “Join the conversation with thought leaders from entertainment, fashion, politics, health care, and technology to hear how they discovered a Third Metric to measuring their achievements beyond money and power.” Huffington claims that too many people measure success on how much money they make and how much power they have. Thrive is supposed to help people find happiness in wisdom, well-being, wonder and giving.

    • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 1:39 pm

      “Thought leaders” from entertainment and fashion?

      You just can’t make this stuff up!

      It’s the “let them eat cake” mentality writ large. Perhaps Gwyneth can explain how she gets away from materialism by cuddling in a $2000 cashmere lounge set at her beach house, sipping imported tea at $200 a pound from a priceless antique china cup she bought in London while staying at her UK estate.

      These people are totally lacking in self-awareness. Having multi-multi-multi-millionaires opine on how others need to measure happiness in non-material ways kinda reminds me of Michelle serving food at a soup kitchen wearing $600 shoes. Or Barbra lecturing others on using clotheslines to dry their clothes, to save on energy, while living in a massive mansion and air conditioning her huge barn.

      The most biting satire in the world about these pompous, self-impressed, egomaniacal louts would fly right over their heads, seen as a documentary and not as a scathing indictment of their preening self-congratulatory self-involvement.

      And what is really funny is that every one of them probably argued against Mitt Romney for being too rich, too white, and “out of touch with the common man”.

      Too too funny………………

      • Cluster April 26, 2014 / 1:57 pm

        Meanwhile, Obama defers to the wishes of an environmentalist billionaire and delays the Keystone Pipeline, and thousands of good paying union jobs with it. But at least they have free healthcare insurance right? Life is good

      • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 2:18 pm

        Aren’t unions exempt from Obamacare? Something about needing union support to get reelected…?

        I think the whole pipeline thing is a payback to the environazis as well as another component of gutting the economy and making the former middle class part of his expanding new Dependent Class.

    • M. Noonan April 26, 2014 / 4:09 pm

      I love that phrase “thought leader” – so clearly a means of disguising the fact that the carriers of said title don’t actually do anything useful.

      • Amazona April 26, 2014 / 11:42 pm

        It also brings to mind the radical Left’s fondness for Thought Police, and “thought leaders” who “reeducate” those with the wrong thoughts.

        We started in that direction with the infamous “Hate Crime” concept, which creates whole new classes of victims and criminals, based on what is determined—-usually using Identity Politics as the metric, such as involvement in certain groups or belonging to certain races—that some thoughts make crimes even worse than they are.

        So a hopped-up thief who shoots up a convenience store during a robbery and kills a black man and a white man will have the two murders seen differently if the killer happens to have a history of belonging to a white supremacist group. The life of the black man is then evidently considered more valuable than that of the white man, because the crime of killing him is considered more heinous. If the white man is a Jew and the white supremacist group is also anti-Semitic, I suppose the two victims would then achieve equality under the law. Uh-oh–the Jew is also gay. Now I guess he’s ahead on points.

        It is just more of the silliness of the Left, a twofer in that it both establishes a government right to punish people for their thoughts as well as separate classes or demographics, always necessary in a Divide and Conquer mentality.

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