Jul 22, 2022 • 17M

Ep. 163 - The Ivy League & Ivory Towers

Laughing at myself and looking at the world through the eyes of an ignorant peasant.

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Episode details

It's a funny story.

Recent polling indicates that almost 98 MILLION people still believe that Joe Biden is doing a great job!

(For the math lovers, that's 37.5% of the ~290 million adults in the country.)

I'd like to laugh at these morons, but first I need to laugh at myself.

Let me tell you a story:

I have a book on my shelf titled The Dictionary of Cultural Literacy. I've never read it. Sure, I've flipped through it a few times, but I've never actually read it. It was published in 1988 and covers everything from idioms and fine art, to literature and world history. Tucked in between "ivory towers" and "Iwo Jima" there is an entry on the “Ivy League” institutions that comprise the heart of America's academic elite.

If only I'd read about that yesterday! Last night, as my wife and I were debriefing the day, she happened to pull up the Banks, Tanks, & Biden's Blunder article.... she paused with a look of amusement on her face. She looked directly at me, with love in her eyes, and said: "It's Ivy League, not Ivory League."

We laughed.

Growing up in a plywood shack in the Alaskan wilderness, I knew I was culturally challenged. We didn't have running water or electricity, let alone a TV. My early life taught a lot of lessons, none of which seemed the least bit relevant to the hustle and bustle of big city living or the apparent prestige of higher education. In fact, in my youth I scoffed at all those educated idiots who chose to live like sardines, packed into tiny apartments in the enchanted concrete jungle.

That was a version of reality I did not prefer. I liked the wild because I'm wild at heart. Standing in front of a lowly swamp, tromping through the woods and exploring the great outdoors, I was always captivated with nature. I felt connected. I felt alive. I remember there were times I would look down at my feet and think: I might be the first human in all of history to stand right in this spot, absorbing this view.

This sort of unique experience somehow just felt more human to me. One of the songs that blared throughout the soundtrack of my coming of age was, "Despite all my rage, I'm still just a rat in a cage!" I didn't want to be a rat in a cage. There's more to life than just money. Not all who wander are lost, and I never did really resonate with those "orange-haired fellers singing about suicide."

I figured people in the cage didn't realize they were trapped. They hadn't noticed that the door was open and that Nature was always there, waiting to impart wisdom, reset perspective and soothe that soul. They were too busy, too caught up in the illusions of importance, not realizing we're all just dust in the wind. Like a flower blooming, our lives start small and unassuming, reach a blossoming of beauty and potential, then slowly fade and fall to the ground, returning to the source of all that is.

We live. We die. I was good with that.

Early on I decided I was going to live life according to my own terms. Sensing there was something more, I was determined to "break on through to the other side" and taste for myself the profoundly sweet experience of being at one with life itself, absorbed by the peace and joy that magically arises when we bask in the glory of simply being alive. Life was too short to waste it in a cage.

Of course, my pie-in-the-sky pontificating and philosophical proclivities were quickly tempered by the tempest of life. Nature is brutal. The laws of physics are ruthless. People are crazy, bad things happen, and life isn't fair—but I always believed life is fundamentally good. Knowing that through and through allowed me to trust. It lead me to FAITH: Following An Intuitive Trusting Heart, and fueled HOPE: Holding Optimistic Perspective Eternally.

But none of that stopped me from being a fool.

Raw intelligence does not prevent stupidity any more than education leads to wisdom.

We are all human. We each have limited subjective experience and a finite cognitive capacity that limits our scope of comprehension. Each of us can only understand so much, because we can only consider so much. The mind can only be crammed so full before the brain begins to selectively dismiss new information. This is what leads to social conditioning, and it also brings me back to Biden's approval rating. 

Thanks for enduring my philosophical romp.

So, turns out my whole life I thought that people who lived in "ivory towers" had "ivory league" educations. If there was ever any doubt that I was a lowly, ignorant peasant, that should pretty much clear things up. I didn't know that the Ivy League was a reference to eight of the oldest colleges and universities in the country, seven of which were founded before the American revolution.

Obviously I haven't watched enough TV and collegiate sports to learn about what really matters in life.

But here's the point of the story:

If you were to read the resumes of the majority of our political leaders, you would find that many of them have Ivy League educations—or perhaps some lesser scrap of paper issued by a different other-than-Ivy elite institution. In fact, people smarter than me have studied this phenomenon and drawn the following conclusion:

Democrats have an Ivy League problem.

"When compared with Republicans, Democratic presidential campaigns much more narrowly draw their top campaign talent in important areas from a handful of elite and mostly private universities. This matters because those Democrats working to elect presidents often have little in common with the electorate itself."

Democrat elitists have little in common with the electorate itself. Shocking!

Perhaps that explains why as Slidin' Biden's overall approval rating continues to plummet, CNN was out this week indicating that 73% of Democrats still approve of his performance, including 62% of Democrats who still approve of his handling of the economy. These figures portray a staggering disconnect from reality.

What world do these people live in?

They live in carefully crafted, specially curated echo chambers of liberal bias that bolster their egos and shelter them from reality. They live in the big blue cities. They sip their lattes, compare their credentials, and discuss the academic minutia of global governance—all of which is far too lofty for the peasants to comprehend. They work in plush government offices, collect fat government pensions, and scheme to sustain the status quo while striving to take over the world.

Their elite educations taught them that progress is built on the backs of peasants...

...and they missed the part where peasants revolt.

History points toward this happening soon!