FOX News Chanel's Tucker Carlson wonders why it is so easy for the children of powerful families to get into elite colleges.
TUCKER CARLSON: If you’ve ever watched Chris Cuomo on CNN, you may have wondered: how did this guy get a TV show? Sure, he’s got well-defined abdominal muscles, and good for him. But he can barely speak English. There are nights when Cuomo emits entire paragraphs that mean nothing at all. Just pure gibberish, like pig Latin, or dogs barking. It’s remarkable. Was this guy educated in the United States? Let’s check Wikipedia. Wait it a second. The entry says that Chris Cuomo went to Yale University in Connecticut. That can’t be right. Yale has famously high admissions standards. Your kids couldn’t get in. No chance. They’d have to be incredibly smart — geniuses, really. Is Chris Cuomo a secret genius? Does he have some amazing talent that’s invisible on TV? Maybe he speaks flawless Urdu? Or has a deep grounding in particle physics? Or can calculate pi to the final digit? Actually, no. Chris Cuomo can’t do any of that.
It turns out that he has an even more impressive qualification: His father was the governor of New York. If you want to get into a top American college, it’s best to have a parent who’s a well-known Democratic politician. That’s the most effective credential of all.
Don’t take our word for it. Ask Dante DeBlasio, son of Bill DeBlasio, the incompetent mayor of New York. There’s no evidence the younger DeBlasio did remarkably well in high school. And yet, like Chris Cuomo, he somehow got into Yale.
Once there, Dante DeBlasio found himself surrounded by people just like himself: the thoroughly average children of other prominent liberals. According to press reports, That would include the offspring of at least three Democrats currently-serving in the US Senate: Michael Bennett, Amy Klobuchar and Sheldon Whitehouse. All of them sent kids to Yale.
Their colleague Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, meanwhile, is one of a stunning number of senate Democrats who’ve sent children Harvard. Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey is a Harvard parent. So is senate minority leader Chuck Schumer. Schumer sent both his kids to Harvard. Barack Obama sent one of his. So did former New York governor Eliot Spitzer.
The all-time record, though, must go to former Vice President Al Gore. Gore sent four. Imagine that: Four kids in a row to Harvard. What are the odds of that occurring in nature? Statistically, it’s about as likely as being hit by lightning every single day for a year. Yet somehow the Gore family pulled it off. Congratulations.
Andrew Cuomo, the sitting governor of New York, sent one of his kids to Harvard, but the other two went to Brown. That’s also an Ivy League university that your kids could never get into. Brown is, as they say, “highly selective,” at least for the children of non-politicians.
But for pure, 200-proof exclusivity, nothing beats Stanford University outside San Francisco. You could live your entire life in this country and never meet a single person who went to Stanford. It’s that rarified. And yet here’s the amazing part: Hillary Clinton’s daughter breezed right in. How did Chelsea do that? Was it her formidable brainpower? Check out her twitter feed, and judge for yourself.
Now, there’s a chance that Chelsea is intentionally misleading us. It’s possible that her entire public persona is performance art — a subversive, Borat-style parody of mindless lifestyle liberalism. If that’s the case, Chelsea Clinton is utterly brilliant. She’s the Jonathan Swift of our time. But it’s also possible that Chelsea isn’t joking at all.
It is possible, indeed even probable, that she is every bit as dull and self-serious as she seems. In that case, not only is Chelsea Clinton profoundly sub-brilliant, you’ve got to wonder how she holds a paying job. How did someone like that get into Stanford?
You might have the same question about some of the kids at Georgetown University, here in Washington. Georgetown’s alumni magazine is available online, so the next time you’ve got a minute, take a look. You’ll recognize many of the names: Biden, Pelosi, Kennedy. These are the children of famous Democratic politicians. Are they impressive, hardworking kids who deserve to be at one of America’s most prestigious universities? Maybe some of them. Maybe not.
That’s irrelevant. They’re the offspring of prominent Democrats. That’s why they’re at Georgetown. How does this happen? Because our meritocracy is a sham. It’s fake. They tell you that only the most accomplished students get into these schools. They’re lying. Their friends’ kids get first dibs. Fellow members of their social circle. Kids whose families can help them down the road. The children of sympathetic politicians are an obvious priority for admissions officers. These are the same politicians who funnel many billions in tax dollars to colleges and universities every year. Letting a senator’s kid into Harvard is smart business. The quid quo pro is obvious. It’s a form of unregulated lobbying. Remember the varsity blues scandal in California, where a group of socially-anxious soccer moms tried to game college admissions? This is far more corrupt, except nobody’s going to prison for it.
So how many Chris Cuomos get into Yale every year? We don’t really know. Like almost everything about higher education, it’s opaque. Prestigious schools can pretend they admit only the most qualified applicants, because nobody can prove otherwise. The real admissions numbers are secret, hidden from public view.
Elite colleges are like public companies that lie about their balance sheets. They’re cooking the books to defraud shareholders. In this case, the shareholders are the entire country. A handful of schools form the gateway to success in America. If you go to Harvard, you are all but guaranteed to make more over the course of your life than someone who didn’t. It’s that simple. When you rig the admissions system, you’re rigging American society. You’re creating an impenetrable class system for your own benefit. And that’s exactly what they’re doing.
You often hear progressives say they worry about income inequality. They don’t mean it. How do you know? Because if the left really cared about the stratification of American society, they’d make college admissions transparent. They’d force Stanford to open the books and show the rest of us how they’re assembling this year’s freshman class. And yet Democrats in Congress haven’t done this. They seem strangely incurious about the process. It’s like they don’t really want to know how it all works. In fact, they already know precisely how admissions works, and they strongly approve. Why wouldn’t they? Their kids are befitting from it.