The central thesis of Noonan’s column is that our political leadership does not understand the rupture in society and growing anger caused by this phenomenon:
The biggest political change in my lifetime is that Americans no longer assume that their children will have it better than they did. This is a huge break with the past, with assumptions and traditions that shaped us….
But do our political leaders have any sense of what people are feeling deep down? They don’t act as if they do. I think their detachment from how normal people think is more dangerous and disturbing than it has been in the past….
When the adults of a great nation feel long-term pessimism, it only makes matters worse when those in authority take actions that reveal their detachment from the concerns—even from the essential nature—of their fellow citizens. And it makes those citizens feel powerless.
Inner pessimism and powerlessness: That is a dangerous combination.
I think Noonan is well-intentioned, but I don’t think she gets it, or at least if she does, she’s not willing to go the last yard.
The equalization of resources in which success is punished is part of the plan. It’s a feature not a bug.
If diminished expectations create a social crisis, it’s just another opportunity to accomplish things that could not otherwise be accomplished.
On our current trajectory, success will be judged by political connections and correctness, not individual effort and hard work.
We are not allowed to be exceptional. And neither are our kids. Get over it.