Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bootstrapping on Legacy: Nepotism watch

As the supremely under qualified Ms. Caroline Kennedy plans to get Hillary Clinton's Senate seat solely on the strength and popularity of nothing but her last name, it was interesting to note this response from a Times reader...

It is amusing that Andrew M. Cuomo, who owes his whole career to his dad, may not get the Senate seat of Hillary Rodham Clinton (who owes her whole career to her husband) because David A. Paterson (who owes his whole career to his dad) may give it to Caroline Kennedy (who owes her whole career to her dad).

The Beast opines better.

Even in parvenu America, noblesse oblige is as good an impetus as any, and many of our best (and a couple of our worst) leaders have been to the manor born. We have a tradition of electing officials with last names like Roosevelt and Adams and, of course, Kennedy, and we are often pleased with the results. Dynasty is not un-American, even if it is anti-democratic. Conversely, some of our most naturally gifted presidents of recent years—Nixon and Clinton come to mind—came right out of the dogpatch and spent a good deal of their public lives struggling with their upstart demons to the detriment of just getting the job done. It was far better to live in ancient Judea in the time of King Solomon, who was born a prince, than in the turbulent days of King David, who started his life as a simple shepherd.

A related post on political ceilings and women appeared on this blog about a year back...

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