Tim Geithner says he doesn't know how he went from a "mediocre student" to leading the response to the "largest destruction of GDP in world history." His resume highlights were from addressing economic crises in developing countries in ways that correlated strongly to increasing poverty and reducing growth. His main response to critics of his "bailout the top" approach is that disaster was the only alternative.
In 1994, the Tampa Bay Times published a riveting story about Kenneth Hardcastle. One of Tampa Bay's civic elites, Hardcastle also had a burgeoning crack addiction and a fondness for underage prostitutes. [more inside]
The Competitor Group/Rock 'n' Roll race series announced this weekend that they will no longer pay appearance fees or travel expenses for elite runners in its North American races, effective immediately. The new policy will first affect the Rock 'n' Roll Philadelphia half marathon, which takes place on September 15th. [more inside]
This year's Bilderberg Conference, an annual gathering of influential people from politics, industry, finance, the intelligence community and the old and new aristocracies, will be taking place in Watford, an outer suburb of London not typically associated with global elites. While tight secrecy is being kept, the organisers have, for the first time, conceded to open a press office. Meanwhile, a loose collective of “activists, artists, journalists and human beings” are organising the Bilderberg Fringe Festival to coincide with it, with conspiracy theorists David Icke and Alex Jones as keynote speakers.
"One can almost hear the anticipatory echoes of something like Yelp in the context of José Ortega y Gasset’s The Revolt of the Masses (1930). The multitude, he wrote, once “scattered about the world in small groups,” now appears “as an agglomeration.” It has “suddenly become visible, installing itself in the preferential positions in society. Before, if it existed, it passed unnoticed, occupying the background of the social stage; now it has advanced to the footlights and is the principal character.” The disgruntled diner, now able to make or break a restaurant through sheer collective will. Against this leveling of critical power, the old guard fulminates. Ruth Reichl, the former editor of Gourmet, recently harrumphed that “anybody who believes Yelp is an idiot. Most people on Yelp have no idea what they’re talking about.”"—Star Wars, by Tom Vanderbilt, in The Wilson Quarterly [more inside]
A third of the UK's leading people went to Oxford or Cambridge universities and four out of every 10 of them attended private schools, a report suggests. [BBC] [more inside]
For the 25th Game Developers Conference, organizers hosted several postmortems for classic games such as Out Of This World, Doom, and Maniac Mansion. They are now free to view online. [more inside]
n+1 explores why "it’s the bearers of culture rather than the wielders of power who are taxed with elitism." [more inside]
This month marks the 25th aniversary of Elite, the groundbreaking 3D space trading game. The making of Elite. More on the making of Elite from The Backroom Boys. Emulate the original BBC Micro version. The Dark Wheel.
“They are brands that may not be considered cool by the often elitist and self-absorbed standards of New York media,” she said. She had taken a car from Manhattan that morning, and wore a pink wool shirt-dress, patent leather Manolo Blahnik heels, and diamond hoop earrings.
Reader's Digest jumps the shark. (NYT)
Reader's Digest jumps the shark. (NYT)
I was a Teenage Wares Freak? San Diego Republican Party chairman Tony Krvaric may have been Strider, co-founder of Fairlight. via Slashdot
Late Night Shots is an "invitation-only" social networking site for elite GOP youth of Washington, DC that the late Steve Gilliard mockingly described as "the best and whitest." The Wonkette blog has devoted an entire section to the site that documents Late Night Shots' racism, date rape, anti-Islamic prejudice, and incest with second cousins, at least until Wonkette's editor started getting invited to their parties. The founder of Late Night Shots, Reed Landry, plans to take his networking site to other cities, but even though Wonkette has lost interest, the Washington City Paper has attracted scrutiny to the site again with a juicy new exposé.
"If Harvard had too many Asians, it wouldn’t be Harvard, just as Harvard wouldn’t be Harvard with too many Jews or pansies or parlor pinks or shy types or short people with big ears." Malcolm Gladwell on the Ivy League business.
"They [the bipartisan elite] have imposed a public morality that affords maximum sexual opportunity for themselves and guarantees maximum domestic chaos for those lower down." While a lot of people (okay, maybe just me) have criticized David Brooks' column as an only-infrequently-successful attempt to channel Malcom Gladwell for the McCain-Specter set, I think he may have stumbled onto a provocative insight here.
Phantom Patriot attacks Bohemian Grove. I'm no conspiracy theorist. I don't believe that the world is ruled by a secret cabal consisting of the Queen of England, The Bushes, The Sultan of Brunei and the ghost of Red Foxx. But Bohemian Grove is pretty freaky. I mean, a 40 foot owl statue? The Cremation of Care? Obviously, the Phantom Patriot is a little, well, off. But why do the rich and powerful need secret societies and kooky rituals anyway?