Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Credentialism

Shaun King graced the pages of The New York Daily News recently with a lengthy article on the lack of graduate college degrees earned by the Trump cabinet nominees.

His piece begins with this revealing transcript:

"On Tuesday night, Ta-Nehisi Coates made a guest appearance with Trevor Noah on “The Daily Show” to discuss “My President Was Black” — his brilliant reflection on the Obama presidency. On Wednesday, The Daily Show posted a memed quote from Coates that has been liked over 230,000 times.
It says this:
If I have to jump six feet to get the same thing that you have to jump two feet for — that’s how racism works.
To be President, Obama had to be scholarly, intelligent, President of the Harvard Law Review, the product of some of our greatest educational institutions, capable of talking to two different worlds.
Donald Trump had to be rich and white. That’s the difference."

Quite revealing of Mr. King's racialist view of things and his apparent inability to differentiate between having acquired several degrees from a prestigious institutions and actually being "scholarly and intelligent". Having observed Obama closely for eight years he is neither scholarly, nor particularly intelligent, in my opinion. We still have not seen his transcripts. No doubt full of high grades, that is why they are concealed. He doesn't want the rest of us to know just how smart he is. We might suffer a blow to our self-esteem. Very thoughtful of him.

Of course all Trump had to do is be rich and white. A 40 year career and the amassing of enormous wealth was effortless. He is white, after all. It is truly a catastrophe that these accomplished black men, King, Noah and Coates, choose to believe such nonsense and worse yet, endorse it for other like minded victims of America's obvious, persistent and systemic racism.

Among the many things this collection of over-hyped, over paid young men do not understand is that many of us have come to understand that degrees are just credentials. They certainly indicate the ability to pass examinations and suggest the possibility of intellectual ability and scholarship.

Many of us have observed over the years that credentials are offers of proof of competence and we have also observed that they are no more than unreliable indicators. One need look no farther than Obama, Hillary Clinton, Kerry, Ben Rhodes and Robby Mook. All highly credentialed, all laughably and sometimes catastrophically incompetent.

Mr. King goes on to recount, in despair, the woeful lack of graduate degrees among Trump and his nominees.

Mr. King, this is a feature, not a bug. We are tired of the credentialed lecturing us on every conceivable subject while demonstrating their complete lack of practical knowledge. Remember Obama and his "shovel-ready jobs"? For those of us in the real world that notion was dead on arrival since the left has been making it more and more difficult to get a project underway for 40 years. Obama figured that out in only a year! Genius.

Donald Trump, with his lack of graduate degrees, actually knows what is required to get a project underway.

Rex Tillerson, with his lack of graduate degrees, actually knows what it takes to run a gigantic organization like the State Department.

Rick Perry, with his lack of graduate degrees, actually knows how to run a giant organization and a great deal more about the business of energy than former 
 "Secretary of Energy was Steven Chu — a Nobel Prize winning physicist who is currently the Professor of Physics and Professor of Molecular & Cellular Physiology at Stanford University. He has a B.A. in Math, a B.S. in Physics, and a Ph.D. in Physics from Berkeley." to whom King chooses to compare him. Chu, infamously, suggested that we should have $8/gal gas. Neither Mr. Chu nor I would suffer from such a disaster, most Americans would.

Mr. King, somehow, in this racist nation you have managed to become part of an educated elite that sneers at those of us without graduate degrees who still have the temerity to aspire to public service.

Donald Trump was elected, in part, as a reaction to the obvious contempt in which you and your cohort hold the rest of us. Well, I guess I am not among the contemptible since I have two graduate degrees. Most of the rest of us do not and demonstrate daily that we are very, very practical and competent people.




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