I received a copy of Charles Murray’s Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010 in the mail last week. Like most books that hopeful publishers send me, it ended up on one of the overstuffed bookcases in my loft, unread. I may just have to pull it down and give it a read because of Ace’s introspective post that resulted by reading a Murray article based on the research in the book.
The media’s portrayal of the haves and have-nots is, unsurprisingly, based upon convenient political bias and misinformation. It turns out that the wealthy elites and the multigenerational poor have indulgent, entitled attitudes and beliefs in common. Neither group is in touch with what made America “America” for preceding generations, and their disconnect is screwing it up for the middle class as well since we no longer have those common bonds across the wealthy, middle class, and poor that made us different from the stratified countries we left in disgust.
Murray blames the disconnect on the social programs of the 1960s. Instead of a “great society,” know-it-all would-be social engineers removed responsibility from social mores, and enfeebled the family first and then the culture in the process. Murray’s book focuses on white Americans, but I don’t think it would be incorrect to assert that so much of the cultural collapse of black families and black culture can also be traced back to the same root cause of failed liberal social engineering.
Unfortunately, there is almost zero chance of reestablishing the cultural mores that make us an American culture without destroying the liberal movement entirely and removing the societal safety net programs that allow generations to thrive regardless of their viability.
I’ll be interested into getting into the book now, and see if Murray has solutions for the problems that the data has revealed.