De Guardian bericht: 'All you need to succeed in our meritocracy is privilege.
Britain's elites are more ferocious than ever in defence of their rewards because they think they won them through ability
We cannot say we weren't warned. In his dystopian satire The Rise of the Meritocracy, published in 1958, Michael Young warned that meritocracy wouldn't lead to equality but to a new, more vicious form of elitism. That is exactly what has happened. Inequalities of wealth and income are as ever but, more importantly, the new elite makes no apologies for its privileges, including the privilege of ensuring an easy passage through life for its own children.
Journalism, for example, was once one of the most democratic occupations: people started on their local papers at 15 or 16 and rose to the top positions in the national press. Now, as research published this week by the Sutton Trust shows, it is among the most elitist. Most leading journalists and news broadcasters went to fee-charging schools. Only a minority went to comprehensives, which have educated 90% of the nation's children for the past 25 years.
This is not surprising, since entry to journalism, now a more powerful and coveted career than it used to be, brings into play the triple advantages of the upper-middle classes. First, you need a degree, preferably from Oxbridge, and the fee-charging schools are factories dedicated to getting the necessary A-levels. Second, you increasingly need family money, to finance you through either a postgraduate diploma or an unpaid internship. Third, you need connections - and preferably a metropolitan base - to help you get a foothold. Only after that does your talent as a journalist come into it.
Different combinations of those advantages determine entry to almost every career that brings wealth, power and status. It is precisely because the 60s and 70s saw so much upward social mobility that those now in top positions see nothing wrong with the outcomes. As they see it, their success was not the result of inherited privilege (even if they came from privileged backgrounds), but of ability and effort. Everybody had to pass competitive exams, and many struggled hard over them. They deserve their success. As Young observed in 2001: "So assured have the elite become that there is almost no block on the rewards they arrogate to themselves."' Lees verder: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,1799714,00.html?gusrc=rss