Meritocracy won’t happen: the problem’s with the ‘ocracy’, by Andrew Gelman, Monkey Cage: I’ve written about this before but I think the topic is worth returning to, because it comes up a lot in our political discourse.The “self-made” man or woman, the symbol of American meritocracy, is disappearing. Six of today’s ten wealthiest Americans are heirs to prominent fortunes. . . . We don’t have to sit by and watch our meritocracy be replaced by a permanent aristocracy . . .
I don’t disagree with Reich on the data..., the data seem to support Reich’s point that lots of rich people come from rich families.
But I want to dispute Reich’s other statement, which is that this is somehow contrary to the spirit of “meritocracy.”
I claim the opposite: that inherited privilege is an intrinsic and central aspect of meritocracy. ...