In his forthcoming book, Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010, Charles Murray argues that
A new upper class that makes decisions affecting the lives of everyone else but increasingly doesn’t know much about how everybody else lives is vulnerable to making mistakes.…As the new upper class increasingly consists of people who were born into upper-middle-class families and have never lived outside the upper-middle-class bubble, the danger increases that the people who have so much inﬂuence on the course of the nation have little direct experience with the lives of ordinary Americans, and make their judgments about what’s good for other people based on their own highly atypical lives.
To prove his point, Murray offers a 25-question quiz designed to test an individual’s distance from the life of the average American. “Have you ever lived for at least a year in an American neighborhood in which the majority of your ﬁfty nearest neighbors probably did not have college degrees?” “Have you ever held a job that caused something to hurt at the end of the day?” “Have you ever had a close friend who was an evangelical Christian?” “Have you ever watched an Oprah, Dr. Phil, or Judge Judy show all the way through?”Take the quiz. Harvard students in particular, well versed as they no doubt are in the arcana of anti-colonial troll studies, might find that improving their scores on this quiz was a way to make themselves more useful and influential citizens of the United States.