Lightfoot, Pritzker and other coronavirus overlords
Saturday at 11:57 am
Have you noticed that those who are demanding broad-based lockdowns as the best or only way to fight the coronavirus pandemic seem to be of one class and those who are struggling personally, mentally and economically are of another class?
For all the focus that the far Left place on class, it is puzzling, but not surprising, that the class aspects of the pandemic fight have been generally ignored. But, as much as they are ignored, the creation of new class conflict is real.
On one side are the experts, professionals, East Coast and liberal politicians and on the other are the desperate: small business owners; the unemployed; retirees whose pensions are threatened; the clinically depressed and anxious, and children yearning to rediscover their childhoods. Among others.
Peggy Noonan put voice to that thought in her excellent Wall Street Journal column: “Scenes From the Class Struggle in Lockdown: Those who are anxious to open up the economy have led harder lives than those holding out for safety.”
With great insight, she said:
Here’s something we should stop. There’s a class element in the public debate [over stemming the coronavirus pandemic]. It’s been there the whole time but it’s getting worse, and few in public life are acting as if they’re sensitive to it. Our news professionals the past three months have made plenty of room for medical and professionals warning of the illness. Good, we needed it, it was news. They are not now paying an equal degree of sympathetic attention to those living the economic story, such as the Dallas woman who pushed back, opened her hair salon, and was thrown in jail by a preening judge. He wanted an apology. She said she couldn’t apologize for trying to feed her family.
There is a class divide between those who are hard-line on lockdowns and those who are pushing back. We see the professionals on one side—those James Burnham called the managerial elite, and Michael Lind, in “The New Class War,” calls “the overclass”—and regular people on the other. The overclass are highly educated and exert outsize influence as managers and leaders of important institutions—hospitals, companies, statehouses. The normal people aren’t connected through professional or social lines to power structures, and they have regular jobs—service worker, small-business owner.Since the pandemic began, the overclass has been in charge—scientists, doctors, political figures, consultants—calling the shots for the average people. But personally they have less skin in the game. The National Institutes of Health scientist won’t lose his livelihood over what’s happened. Neither will the midday anchor.
Will the dispossessed become the new Tea Party. Will they develop what the Marxist-influenced Left call a “class consciousness?” Are these Hilary Clinton’s “deplorables” who will, with one voice, say “screw you” to the smug, supercilious autocrats whose possession of the good, true and beautiful are not to be challenged? Will they reinstall Trumpian policies in the White House for another four years?
It is to be hoped. One things is clear though: The liberals, progressives, socialists and Democrats who have cloaked themselves on the side of the working class, the victimized and the impoverished have given up that mantle. They are the overlords representing the overclass.
Highly recommended: Scott Stantis on the lockdown and other matters.
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