Sunday, November 06, 2005

In today's New York Times Book Review, David Brooks writes about The Chosen: The Hidden History of Admission and Exclusion at Harvard, Yale, and Princeton by Jerome Karabel. Thinking about college admissions, Brooks wonders if the meritocracy thing is all it's cracked up to be, and suggests that a bit of affirmative action -- for people with old money -- might be a good idea:

... [Karabel] never steps outside the story, the way an essayist might, to measure what was lost and gained with the decline of the chivalric ethos and the rise of the meritocratic one. Those old WASP bluebloods may have been narrow and prejudiced, but they did at least have a formula for building character.

What makes this amusing is that Brooks's review is accompanied by this picture:

You know -- the one that appeared in the Yale yearbook over the caption

George Bush delivers illegal, but gratifying right hook to opposing ball carrier.

Character building? Oh yeah, sure.

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