test Elites Debate - Munk Debates

Elites Debate

May 21, 2024
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Elites Debate

Be it Resolved, the elites have betrayed America

Long-held notions of the role of government, trade and economic policy, foreign policy and immigration are being challenged by populist thinkers and movements. They argue that government has been captured by an elite, college-educated class, and their policies benefit a privileged few while ignoring the needs of the middle and working class. Populist’s critics believe that the rising tide in anti-establishment thinking ignores the incredible progress in health care, education, and tech that has been realized under the governance of these intellectual elites. Populist anger, they argue, represents a grave threat to western democracy and the trusted institutions that paved the post-war path to peace and prosperity.

Arguing in favour of the resolution is Batya Ungar-Sargon, opinion editor of Newsweek and author of Second Class: How the Elites Betrayed America’s Working Men and Women.

Arguing against the resolution is Joel Stein, journalist and author of In Defense of Elitism.

The attack on the elites is nothing but fear.”
-Joel Stein

The cultural elites have become the economic elite through an intentional plunder of the middle class.”
-Batya Ungar

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