Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The 'New Bedford or New Canaan' fallacy

For the record, I find any kind of extremist political views annoying at best, and nauseating at worst. The extreme left and the extreme right both irk me in their own special ways, but I know at the end of the day an individual's political views are his or her own prerogative. For this entry, I would like to have some fun with an extreme-leftist sect known as trustafarians. Trustafarians are people who live off money they haven't earned (i.e. inherited wealth, trust funds, economic outpatient care) and hold extreme leftist political views. As I've already tacitly admitted, someone's political views (as well as their economic status) are really none of my business. However, trustafarians make it my business if and when they try to tell me 'how it is' for the working man. (And if anyone cares to see my W-2 or my 1099s, I would be more than happy to share. Seriously, I'm not kidding about that).

One easy way that trustafarians identify themseleves is by their adherence to what I'll call the "New Bedford or New Canaan" fallacy. At its core, it's the idea that everyone is either extremely well-off (New Canaan) or extremely poor (New Bedford). What trustafarians don't realize is that America has an enormous middle class. They may not be able to comprehend it, but there's a lot of room between New Bedford and New Canaan.

I think this is something that everyone who *works* understands. (And I'll define *work* there not merely as holding a job, but as both having a job AND using that income source to pay for all fixed living costs, other bills, discretionary spending, etc.) It's something I recommend that anyone who wants to make grand declarations about "the working man" ought to try sometime..

1 comment:

kad barma said...

"People who have what they want are fond of telling people who haven't what they want that they really don't want it. --Ogden Nash