Who wouldn't love a separate but equal system of education?

 UPDATE: The critique below of Arlie Russell Hothschild is more accurately directed at the New York Times reporter, Jason DeParle, who I'm actually quoting. He, in turn, is quoting Hothschild, not the people she studied. Like most NYT reporters, DeParle has no expertise about anything whatsoever, but he has written a book on efforts to reduce welfare in the U.S. That focus should inform a suspicion that he is misinterpreting Hothschild in a way that makes ot seem that her book is about welfare benefits. Really, this could be about how much the NYT sucks. Also, I should point out that Hothschild is doing actual science, unlike some people.

Non-college whites, that's who.

In the news today at Talking Points Memo:

Poll: Majority Of Republicans Now Say Colleges Are Bad For America

They say this is a big change since 2015. But what we also know is that college educated people who identified as Republican in 2015 are increasingly telling pollsters that they are independent. I'd say this is less of a trend and more just a reflection of the Trump core of the GOP.

To the extent it is a trend, no doubt it is being actively encouraged by efforts like this:

Review enough such cases of faculty polemic gone viral, and an archetype starts to emerge — an assembly line of outrage that collects professors’ Facebook posts, opinion essays, and classroom comments and amplifies them until they have become national news. Often, at the start of that line, you’ll find Campus Reform, a news site that dispatches student journalists to track "liberal bias and abuse on America’s campuses."

Campus Reform’s pieces are often stamped with the hallmarks of nonpartisan journalism. Its reporters reach out to the professors, and sometimes to their institutions, to seek comment. But the stories run beneath shareable, quote-strewn headlines that tend to offer a thumbnail sketch of a more complicated statement: "American patriotism is ‘drenched in whiteness,’ prof claims." "Prof blames ‘Trump and trumpism’ for Scalise shooting."

Then, and often quite quickly, a thriving conservative-media industry delivers a signal boost. Longstanding industry leaders like The National Review and edgier newcomers like Heat Street and The Blaze offer their own write-ups of the controversies, often drawing from the Campus Reform reports without contributing additional reporting.

But you can't weaponize crazy campus news if no one cares in the first place. The fact that stories about liberal professors and students go viral on Facebook is a giant piece of evidence about the psyche of Red America. A piece of evidence that academics--because they are human beings--are ill-suited to hear. The conclusion that you, the person doing the research, are the problem, is not something humans are good at seeing. But academics themselves and the institutions they work at are a huge part of what fuels the resentment non-college whites feel towards elites.

A truly amazing example of simply not hearing what people say comes from a review of the book STRANGERS IN THEIR OWN LAND: Anger and Mourning on the American Right, By Arlie Russell Hochschild.

In “Strangers in Their Own Land,” which has been nominated for a National Book Award, Hochschild calls this the “Great Paradox” — opposition to federal help from people and places that need it — and sets off across Louisiana on an energetic, open-minded quest to understand it.

[...]

“You are patiently standing in a long line” for something you call the American dream. You are white, Christian, of modest means, and getting along in years. You are male. There are people of color behind you, and “in principle you wish them well.” But you’ve waited long, worked hard, “and the line is barely moving.”

Then “Look! You see people cutting in line ahead of you!” Who are these interlopers? “Some are black,” others “immigrants, refugees.” They get affirmative action, sympathy and welfare — “checks for the listless and idle.” The government wants you to feel sorry for them.

And who runs the government? “The biracial son of a low-income single mother,” and he’s cheering on the line cutters. “The president and his wife are line cutters themselves.” The liberal media mocks you as racist or homophobic. Everywhere you look, “you feel betrayed.”

Look again at that. What part is direct quotation and what part is the voice of Professor Arlie Russell Hothschild? The juxtapostion of "line-cutting" and "welfare" is 100% the product of the author. Importantly, IT MAKES NO FUCKING SENSE.

There is no line for welfare! You can't cut the line for a means-tested program like Medicaid or TANF. If you are poor, you get the benefit. Black people getting TANF has absolutely no bearing on whites getting TANF. Welfare benefits are not zero sum.

Take away the fake connection between "line-cutting" and welfare and look at what line the person was actually talking about:

“You are patiently standing in a long line” for something you call the American dream. You are white, Christian, of modest means, and getting along in years. You are male. There are people of color behind you, and “in principle you wish them well.” But you’ve waited long, worked hard, “and the line is barely moving.”

THE AMERICAN DREAM!!! Medicaid is not "the American dream". TANF is not "the American dream".

What government program does have a line? What government program is the make-it or break-it for "the American dream"What government program is zero sum, where if a black person gets it, a white person does not?

ADMISSION TO A PUBLIC STATE UNIVERSITY!

And what is in the news about admissions to public universities?

Fisher v. Texas

Fisher v. Texas

Academics know that affirmative action in admissions doesn't actually help black people. The numbers are infinitesimally small compared to racial wealth and achievement gaps. Plus, black people with college education earn significantly less than their similarly educated white cohort. And affirmative action mostly just bumps people one notch up on the education ladder--these are kids who'd graduate from college anyway, just one "not as good."

But non-college whites don't know this! Everyone tells them that college is the key to success! The news tells them that colleges win affirmative action battles in court. The news also tells them that Barack Obama went to Harvard, and, worse, a black girl from the South Side of Chicago named Michelle Robinson (just like the Eddie Murphy character on SNL-Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood) went to Princeton.

And who runs the government? “The biracial son of a low-income single mother,” and he’s cheering on the line cutters. “The president and his wife are line cutters themselves.” The liberal media mocks you as racist or homophobic. Everywhere you look, “you feel betrayed.”

Academics can't see what non-college whites really resent because it's staring them in the mirror.

The Morrill Act called for the education of "the industrial classes". In 1862, pre-industrial revolution, to be "industrial" was to work with your hands. Instead, our post-secondary schools adopted the same model used by Harvard. They also teach farmers how to use GPS satellites to eliminate the need for farm employment. Yes, that's "agricultural science", but it's not what Congress had in mind in 1862.

This wasn't a big problem when a high school diploma qualified students for a career. But today, when post-secondary education is essential to secure employment, our system of providing it is separate but equal. If you didn't go to college, you still pay state taxes and fund State U, but your kids won't go there. Instead, they are left to fend for themselves in the jungle of trade schools, community colleges, and for-profits.

If you graduated from high school, got ripped off by a for-profit, and now work a low skill service job, what would you think when the radio tells you that English majors at Oberlin are protesting General Tso's Chicken as "cultural appropriation"? Me? I'd say college was bad for the country.