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In American society poverty is associated with failure on many levels. We have our caste system as much as India, only ours is economic, and enforced ruthlessly with endless class warfare - largely in one direction.

Something I've experienced all my life, and even more strongly since I came to the west coast and the Bay Area, is the out-sized and mis-labeled emphasis placed on signaling here. Supposedly smart and well-educated professionals will use what you wear and what terms you use as a proxy for actually listening and thinking about what one has said. Recent college grads are even worse.

All societies have used class-based stereotypes as a means of regulating and preserving the status quo. However, what I've experienced in the Bay Area are people who tell themselves they are aware of this and are transcending these mechanisms while virulently and mindlessly engaging in them.

Where have all the real intellectuals gone?




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