A World Without Consequences, by the Zman

The elite live in blissful serenity, convinced that nothing criminal or violent will ever befall them. From the Zman at theburningplatform.com:

When I was a kid, serendipity landed me in a very nice prep school for boys. The student body was mostly drawn from the upper middle class. There were a few genuinely middle class kids and a few kids from very wealthy homes. The handful of poor kids, who got there on their wits and dumb luck, naturally stood out from the crowd. At that age, kids are keenly aware of differences in class. That’s because the awareness of group status is strongest at that age. As a result it was rough going for the poor kids initially.

My first taste of it was in the locker-room for gym class. A snotty little rich kid started giving me the business. He was smaller and weaker than me and it was obvious, at least to me, that he would not fare well in a fight with me or with anyone probably. He was not tough. He persisted and when he put his finger in my chest, I put his face into a locker a few times. The one thing poor guys know is that soft men do not react well to the sight of their own blood. My nemesis started to cry and then ran for a teacher.

His friends volunteered to tell the head master that I was the villain, so I was hauled away for interrogation. That was when I discovered that there was such a thing as bourgeois values. Poor kids never rat and they never run to the authorities. In the upper middle class, it is exactly the opposite. The winner is the guy who runs to the authorities with the most convincing tale of woe. It’s just assumed that some authority with the power to pass judgement will adjudicate matters, based on a set of unwritten rules I’d never unriddle.

To continue reading: A World Without Consequences

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