Lion of the Blogosphere

Jobs and class

For people who forgot that I previously posted this (but here I add some extra categories, hewing closely to Paul Fussell’s class categories):

Poor people: Don’t work at all.

Proles: Work crappy jobs that are injurious to their health like construction or coal mining.

Middle class: Boring meaningless cubicle jobs.

Upper-middle class: Boring and meaningless jobs (but less boring and meaningless than middle-class jobs) with a private office which pay better (in some cases a lot better) than middle-class jobs.

Upper class: CEO, hedge fund manager, etc.

Top out of sight: Work that is meaningful and enriches their lives, making them better people while helping others, and achieving what Abraham Maslow called self-actualization.

Class X: Trying to self-actualize like the TOOS class, but living in poverty and unable to afford to have children.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 30, 2017 at 12:33 pm

Posted in Labor Markets

132 Responses

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  1. Hi Lion,
    Where do you think scientists belong?
    And what about management consultants?

    Larry

    April 30, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    • Scientists are middle-class, and management consultants are upper-middle class.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      • What about tenured professors?

        Jimi

        April 30, 2017 at 12:52 pm

      • That’s Class X, but making a middle-class salary.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 30, 2017 at 12:53 pm

      • Tenured professors do well. It’s the professors beneath who do not.

        JS

        April 30, 2017 at 1:49 pm

      • It seems to me that scientists and doctors should go into a separate professional class. It’s unlikely their jobs fall into the category of boring and meaningless that you put upper middle class jobs into.

        Mike Street Station

        April 30, 2017 at 1:49 pm

      • Tenured professors make surprisingly little. Under 100k for most state schools. The California State University system pays $81k for associate professor.

        JW Bell

        April 30, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      • The tenured professors employed at the Ivy Leagues, and tier 1 institutions earn a upper middle class salary. Some with other perks like free or subsidized housing.

        JS

        April 30, 2017 at 3:46 pm

      • >>Tenured professors make surprisingly little. Under 100k for most state schools. The California State University system pays $81k for associate professor.

        Surprisingly little? 80-100K for teaching 3-4 classes per YEAR. I will take that job any day.

        Daniel

        April 30, 2017 at 4:48 pm

      • UC professors teach four classes a year. Cal State professors teach four courses *per* semester. At California Community Colleges, full time faculty are expected to teach six classes per semester (I’d expect institutional variation when it comes to winter intercession and Summer). Getting tenure at a research university is incredibly difficult, and you’re basically writing one grant proposal after another, begging people for money. People at all levels regularly make a 100K (though the Cal States are surprisingly stingy).

        Vince

        May 1, 2017 at 1:21 am

      • Some states posts the annual salary of all state employees, including university faculty and staff. Twenty years ago, one of my MBA marketing professors at the University of Florida had a $350K annual salary. He was an excellent professor and, I guess, pulled in a lot of grant dollars.

        E. Rekshun

        May 1, 2017 at 11:25 am

    • Daniel wrote:

      “80-100K for teaching 3-4 classes per YEAR. I will take that job any day”

      Daniel,
      They have to do research too. Publish or perish.

      I am a lecturer and I teach 6 classes a year and do all my own marking. I get a paid 3 month holiday in the summers, but during the term I often spend weekends and evenings marking. I have to put up with deadbeat students who lie and cheat and complain….but most of the students are nice. However when you read the student evaluations when the term is over there is usually someone in the class who doesn’t like you and makes nasty comments. You might have 30 nice comments and one nasty one, but it is the nasty one you remember, especially if they write lies saying you are late for class etc. It is stressful.

      I teach math using a Surface Pro computer, with its pen, attached to a projector. I have started recording my lectures (just my voice and what I am writing) and putting them on Moodle. That way there is a record of exactly how long the lecture is, what was taught, and how it was taught.

      Recently I had a student who missed the final exam. He said he had dry eyes and didn’t feel well, and asked if I needed a doctor’s note. I told him I did. This student rarely came to class. He wrote 2/5 quizzes and missed the second midterm. He produced a doctor’s note saying he had irritated eyes. I told him that wasn’t a valid reason to miss an exam. He went to the department chair and the chair told me i have to let him write the final. I’m getting too old to put up with this bullshit.

      Rosenmops

      April 30, 2017 at 8:28 pm

    • I’m 35, and have worked a lot of different jobs since graduating). My jobs have been in sales. There’s basically 2 types of sales, the type where the customer comes to you and the type where you go out (or call) the customer. The first type isn’t so bad, and is commonly found in retail settings. The prospective customer will come up to you to ask questions. They want to talk with you, and you talk positively about your product and push it somewhat, but don’t necessarily get the rejection at the end, because you don’t always have to ask for the sale. Basically you just answer their questions. As everyone knows retail sales pays little, though, but it is easy and doesn’t involve a lot of stress.

      The other type sucks because you have to go out business to business (or telemarket) and talk with people who, 95% of the time, don’t want to talk with you. And at times you have to push, try to find out who the decision maker is (after talking with the secretary) and then call him. It’s all a numbers game, and all the tiny rejections ad up and for me, and I presume others, it have negative consequences on the psyche and makes people a bit psychologically abnormal, even after leaving the workplace. There’s a big turnover in sales

      My other jobs have been in the field of procurement. I worked in the private sector at a small business. I also worked for a large city government and then state government. I had to quit because it was so boring, and I hated sitting at a desk all day typing stuff that was very boring. I don’t want to type all day. It’s horrible. I had to quit.

      Most people have a hard time knowing what a job is like until they actually try it. How can any high school senior really know? Through trial I gradually discovered what I dislike the least versus like the most, because all jobs are a drag if you have no choice but to do them each day. Generally speaking, the most enjoyable jobs pay the least and require little responsibility. For example, I would love being a clerk at a small bookstore. Low stress, I could read in down time, and I could talk with people who wanted to talk with me. I worked at Sunglass Hut in college (they usually had only one person working at a time) and when no one was in the store I could read magazines or books all day. It was great!

      When I stared my work life post college, I had my priorities wrong. I was too focused on trying to get money rather than doing something that didn’t feel like a lot of work and was somewhat enjoyable, after all, we spend most of our waking time at work. *Many people don’t even know what jobs are out there that they would like more.* I was in that position, and now, going forward, I regret earning my MBA along with pretty much my whole career track.

      I started being a paraprofessional substitute, because I was unemployed at a family member did that. It was easy and it did not feel like work (my most important criteria) and I discovered that based on my criterion, education was the best field for me. Being a para pays nothing though, and now I am a substitute who will be pursuing teacher cert. For me at least, being a sub teacher is really easy, and I know being a teacher won’t be all that more of a drag.

      Here was my list of what I did not want in a job and what I did want:

      I do not like:
      – desk jobs
      – prospecting or jobs with rejection
      – jobs that require heavy thought on the job
      – Dealing with bodily fluids and gore

      – I want a job that does not feel like work
      – I like relaxed, low stress jobs
      – I like to help people
      – I like a certain job security and at least middle class pay

      Based on my criteria, here are some jobs I decided I would like along with notes:

      Teacher – Special ed or other high demand field

      Librarian – no jobs

      Forester- it might be hard being outside all the time especially when older. Progression in the field means having a desk job

      Pharmacist – no jobs, hard to get in Pharma school

      Return of Shawn

      May 1, 2017 at 4:48 pm

      • To Return of Shawn,

        Jobs in forestry or wildlife biology are usually desk jobs part of the year and field jobs at other times. These jobs are not flooded with immigrants (which is a problem in Canada) because immigrants don’t usually like going in the wilderness.

        Rosenmops

        May 2, 2017 at 12:13 am

      • Interesting post. Thank you.

  2. Which class of those jobs produces actual value and which are value transference/parasites? Where are MD specialists earning 400K+?

    fakeemail

    April 30, 2017 at 12:56 pm

  3. Where do people who simply like working and like their jobs belong?

    Yakov

    April 30, 2017 at 1:12 pm

    • I think we are all prole according to Lion. I’m prole and proud (though my job as a tenured lecturer is probably middle class). I’m prole at heart.

      Rosenmops

      April 30, 2017 at 2:57 pm

      • A very strong criteria that separates the non-proles from the proles in Academia. Bilingualism at least when it comes to research, excluding any East Asian language.

        JS

        April 30, 2017 at 3:42 pm

      • No.1 criteria is how you carry yourself. Not your job.

        You can be a entrepreneurial billionaire. But if you hit on a woman in a meeting with a group, you comrade are a ‘prole’.

        Proles have more balls than mid class. And are more honest than bobos, and our beloved globalist psychopath elite, peace be upon them. .

        The Philosopher

        April 30, 2017 at 6:35 pm

      • JS, very few non-proles in Academia are bilingual. Very few non-native or non-immigrant people are bilingual, in general, at least in the U.S.. Prep school French, Spanish, or Latin very rarely means that you can speak those languages. You may be able to muddle through a newspaper article, or pick enough up to decipher meaning when listening, but it is extremely rare to be able to hold a conversation in French, for example, for these people. Sure, with one another; each forgiving or not perceiving the gaffs of the other. But not with a native French person, and thus bilingualism is not achieved.

        Though, it is true that there are a talented few that pick the languages up to a functional level. Often, these individuals will know more than two languages. Those people generally have a proficiency for language independent of their class. However, it is a small minority even in upper class and TOOS circles. I went to school with these people and know what their language abilities are, as a group.

        Dave

        May 1, 2017 at 9:45 am

      • A quality of proles is generally to be proud of their prolish-ness.

        Dave

        May 1, 2017 at 9:47 am

  4. JS stated recently that Caucasians are more apt to self actualize than East Asians, and while this is true, the idea gets stereotyped to the hilt. Here in Vancouver, Canada, the large Chinese community comes across as very blingy but I suspect that’s a reflection of immigrant aspirations. Old money EAs in places like Hong Kong and Taipei are probably as likely to be noblesse oblige as their European counterparts. Meanwhile the large Indian community in this city seems to stay off the radar for the most part, but has a tendency to build large obnoxious houses in the cheaper far-flung suburbs of the city, with the aim of impressing their Indian friends and relatives.

    Roli

    April 30, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    • Indians like to stay off the radar. Not much bling, law abiding, not trying to overturn social norms, family values that conservatives always support. All in all, ideal immigrants.

      Wt

      April 30, 2017 at 2:37 pm

      • Lots of Sikh gangs in Vancouver. They are always shooting each other.

        Rosenmops

        April 30, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    • The Indians around Vancouver also build those monster homes so they can have several generations living together. The Indians think white people are cold because white kids usually move out and live by themselves when they grow up.

      White people think the Indians are nuts for living with their extended families. Personally I think it is why there is a lot of domestic violence in the Indian community. Who the hell wants to live with their mother-in-law?

      My son’s ex-girlfriend had a job in Vancouver where she worked with a lot of Chinese people recently arrived from mainland China. She said the women were catty and mean. There were obsessed with their appearance and finding a rich guy to marry.

      Rosenmops

      April 30, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    • Lol we self actualize by tuning up our riced out cars, wearing bling, gardening, hunting and fishing.

      owning your own space and being far from the emperor is like the confucian ideal, none of this white boy rat race stuff lol.

      Miss Minnie

      April 30, 2017 at 4:23 pm

  5. You’re definition of Class X is completely true of today’s hipster/sjw culture. All of their status signaling (minimalist living, tiny house movement, Marxist economics) is just a cover for the reality that they are dead broke losers that can’t play in a man’s game.

    B.T.D.T.

    April 30, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    • The consensus view is that hipsters are phony paupers, not broke.

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    • OT, but has anybody here ever come across anyone who actually lived in one of those “tiny houses”?

      J1

      April 30, 2017 at 3:54 pm

      • I lived in an 8-wide for a few months. Kinda neat and cozy, TV real close up for viewing. Neighbors unpredictable. I slept well, but I was young.

        Oh wait that’s different isn’t it.

        Mrs Stitch

        April 30, 2017 at 9:22 pm

      • Trailers would probably be fine places to live if your neighbors weren’t trailer trash.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 30, 2017 at 9:52 pm

      • Trailers would probably be fine places to live if your neighbors weren’t trailer trash.

        It’s been said before – you must earn enough money so you don’t have to live near poor people.

        I believe that most of the over-55 age restricted trailer parks in FL aren’t bad; in fact there a more than a few w/ on the water, and they’re continually fighting off developers.

        E. Rekshun

        May 1, 2017 at 11:36 am

      • Trailer parks in Florida are expensive. They are like $400k for a 3000 sq.ft. lot. Then you have to get the trailer.

        no too late

        May 1, 2017 at 4:37 pm

  6. What is so great about self actualization through work. That’s for only su per wealthy people by definition.
    Work for most is making money to live well. Self actualization is what u attain at spare time doing hobbies or Vacation.

    Wt

    April 30, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    • As Stillman said in Metropolitan all these charity work is just about competing in an area where no one can tell if you are a failure. Thats more important than if there is any self-actualizing going on. Brings to mind Jamie Johnson.

      As a possible injection of a topic into this blog consider this story from Elon Musk’s ex-wife, an authoress:
      http://www.marieclaire.com/sex-love/a5380/millionaire-starter-wife/

      Lion o' the Turambar

      April 30, 2017 at 2:40 pm

  7. How about proles that out-earn most middle and some upper-middle class? Police, fire, unionized construction trades, small business owners etc.? Is it fair to say that class is not highly correlated with income?

    roxborough's son

    April 30, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    • Jobs that pay well but are still crappy and/or injurious to one’s health. Like being a cop, where you can get shot, or a fireman where you can die in a fire. They are prole.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 2:31 pm

      • Yep. Bosch is prole. And a good show.

        Dain

        April 30, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    • Correct, class is not highly correlated with income.

      I was the first commenter to eventually say the genuine TOOS class are not money maniacs like the upper class.

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 3:38 pm

      • Well that being the case, class in the USA is stupid. I was fortunate to become wealthy at a young age (late thirties) in one of the most prole ways possible…saved a few bucks while in the military after high school, got a Union civil service job after getting out, began buying, rehabbing, land-lording, and flipping properties in my prole Philly neighborhood concurrently with working and starting a family. It was easy to make lots of money that yuppies (Philly “code” for any white person not originally from the neighborhood) could only dream of. Yuppies think that work is supposed to be something that you’re passionate about like at an Art gallery or in music or whatever. It’s not…work is supposed to suck. Anyone rooted in common sense knows that’s Utopian bullshit from the jump. My kids have all the opportunity in the world and I hope they forego college and grow our family’s business. This is still the best country in the world and it’s really easy to get rich here but here’s the big secret…unless you are exceptional you have to have a skill at shit that nobody else wants to do. I know fellas who are self employed as roofers who make $1500 a day when they’re working. Controlled for bad weather and such that’s pulling $200K a year without even trying. I don’t envy them as roofing is ball-busting shit work, but if you truly desire to get wealthy, then the American Dream is far from dead and you can stop whining, nut up and get out there. Auto mechanics and plumbers for instance can make even more $$$. And if you don’t want to do that type of work because you feel that it’s beneath you or whatever then you have nobody to blame but yourself when a high-school grad like me can become generationaly wealthy and set my family up in a legacy business but people I know with all kinds of advanced degrees are wage-slaves.
        One more thing I’d like to add is that just because someone is able to make 200k one year roofing doesn’t mean he has any chance of escaping the rat-race. You have to take that money and invest it in assets that get double digit returns (real estate) and get lucky in a number of other ways. But without having a steady stream of disposable income, you don’t leave the starting blocks, and most of the “Middle-class” or “Upper Middle-Class” yuppies that I’ve ever dealt with are stuck at the start line spending all of their disposable income on artisinial cheeses, drugs/party lifestyle, and trendy apartments before they even save it. -Roxborough Prole

        roxborough's son

        May 1, 2017 at 12:24 am

      • began buying, rehabbing, land-lording, and flipping properties

        I’ve got two graduate degrees and never came close to making six-figures in corporate America. However, snapping up three serendipitous foreclosures during the housing crash set me up for a comfortable early retirement when I’m ready. But, that didn’t come w/o a lot of sweat equity.

        E. Rekshun

        May 1, 2017 at 11:44 am

  8. What class is someone who is independently wealthy (say $2 million net worth) who can live comfortably off of their rents and dividends but not high on the hog? I know a few small town millionaires like this who do not have great prestige or power but are financially independent and answer to no one. Kind of like local gentry.

    B.T.D.T.

    April 30, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    • its called /r/financialindependence

      Miss Minnie

      April 30, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    • A few questions to think about in this situation:

      * Where did they get their money from? Work v. inheritance.

      * What was their parent’s caste? People generally wind up with values akin to their parents.

      * Do they think an annual vacation at disneyland would be neat or purgatory?

      * Did they spend their life in that small town, or did they use to live in a high cost of living area?

      Anonymous Bro

      April 30, 2017 at 7:05 pm

      • “* What was their parent’s caste?”

        WFT??

        Rosenmops

        May 1, 2017 at 12:51 am

  9. what the hell is a management consultant?

    i’m in the “poor” class, i don’t work at all and am a student. very dead on though, i am absolutely not looking forward to whatever cubicle farm job is available for me when i graduate at the end of the year. i will probably end up (as a graduate position) as a shift manager at target, though.

    james n.s.w

    April 30, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    • “what the hell is a management consultant?”

      If you have to ask, your social class is at best only middle class.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    • Psh, today’s youth WISH they had cubicles waiting for them. It’s not like Gen X where the question is “How can I avoid selling out despite taking a good office job where I have to dress up?” Gen Z (even younger than millennial) is the first generation to be confronted with a gig economy norm.

      Dain

      April 30, 2017 at 3:21 pm

    • Simple, it’s another value transference scheme of BS, or in layman’s term, fake make work.

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    • >>what the hell is a management consultant?

      Management consulting is the extremis in worthless, conning, value transference. Management consulting firms bewilder and bedazzle their clients with the fact that all their consultants graduate from the best MBA programs but elide the fact that such graduates are young, clueless, know nothings who only excel at writing reports and taking tests.

      If clients of such firms could compare notes they would realize that a lot of the specialized research that they paid $millions for is simply boilerplate word-processing documents and spreadsheets with a few alterations for particular details pertaining to the client.

      Daniel

      April 30, 2017 at 5:03 pm

      • Good answer, Daniel.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 30, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      • I’m a management consultant of a type.

        You get generalists, and specialists and the recruitment is very vigorous to stop spoofers coming in.

        I think we add value with our juicy brains but of course I’d say that. Aha.

        The Philosopher

        April 30, 2017 at 6:23 pm

      • Sounds like jealousy to me Daniel. Missed out on a career in Booz Allen or Mckinsey?
        I have heard all these ridiculous arguments like Mgmt. Consultants, Fund Managers, Financial Analysts, HR Managers all apparently worthless.

        Then these same posters go on to say how a construction worker (a very low class job if there ever was one) is suddenly creating so much meaningful/valuable work. Or maybe some other profession which requires staying outdoors and working with hands. No wonder this country is going downhill.

        wt

        April 30, 2017 at 6:34 pm

      • Take a look at this bullshit company, Teneo holdings. They were really tied up with the Clintons and were probably expecting $billions in billings if Hillary won. I will be surprised if they are still in business 4 years from now. And I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the principals end up in jail.

        http://www.teneoholdings.com/

        Put your mouse arrow over the link. They are involved in every money squeezing management consulting scam imaginable: from executive recruiting, to capital raising, to M&A, to brand management, to “restrucuring”, to sports talent, to diversity and inclusion (I love that one) and on and on. Worthless. Conmen.

        And McKinsey and Booz Allen are little different. They just overawe with prestige.

        I guess we gotta do something to keep all these Ivy league graduates employed, there just aren’t enough Wall-streeting and lawyering jobs to go around.

        BTW, I know a lot about worthless, value transference scams. I was a headhunter in New York for 20 years. What a scam recruiting is.

        Daniel

        April 30, 2017 at 8:35 pm

      • wt,

        you’re entitlement has inhibited your ability to have an accurate and rational opinion of the world. Of course construction workers provide “valuable” work. By definition, what they build is valuable. By definition, people who move money around do not create “value”. Your conflation of “meaning” with “value” isn’t helping your perception of things.

        Dave

        May 1, 2017 at 9:31 am

  10. Lion,

    I’ll get this out of the way: I’m an educated prole. When I graduated high school I wanted to go to the best school in my state, and I was qualified, but didn’t get accepted because I’m a white male. I ended up getting a math degree from a bogus school.

    Since then I worked on oil rigs. I made six figures doing that but it was very dangerous. Now I’m an electrician. So I’m prole for sure.

    The point I want to make is that I think some proles achieve self-actualization. A lot of people I know hunt or fish or farm, or all three. I think there is much satisfaction in harvesting ones own food. There is a sense of achievement associated with it; a physical reward for hard work.

    Personally, I hunt. You city folk may think hunting only involves going into the woods and shooting an animal. There’s a lot more to it than that. It’s very difficult. I might only get 2 or 3 shots per year; and that’s with a lot of time dedication. But the reward is amazing.

    I could say more but this is already getting long.

    Michael

    April 30, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    • Hunting passes the time, but isn’t self-actualization.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 2:34 pm

      • “Hunting passes the time, but isn’t self-actualization.”

        Not to you, maybe.

        Rosenmops

        April 30, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      • I agree with you that hunting is usually prole but with some reservations. Watch the first episode of Life Below Zero on Netflix – there’s a kid who seems to self-actualize from subsistence hunting. Read Ortega y Gasset’s Meditations on Hunting. Check out @wmbrownproject on Instagram for a upper/bobo who hunts (byline: “Matt Hranek Full time traveler, explorer, eater and drinker. Conde Nast Traveler Men’s Style editor, photographer, director- LA Rep Concrete and Clay”).

        R P

        April 30, 2017 at 2:58 pm

      • I’m someone who’s spent his whole life in the suburbs and the city, and have no experience in hunting. Nevertheless, I can understand how hunting can be a self-actualizing process for many. All human beings were hunter-gatherers from roughly two million years ago until 10,000 years ago. The evolution we’ve undergone since agriculture came about has been substantial, but two million years of evolution isn’t easily undone.

        In a sense, hunting is the job every healthy male was born for.

        Sid

        April 30, 2017 at 4:01 pm

      • Wrong. The visceral pleasure is undeniable; and something which is lacking in “self-actualizing” people… They find visceral pleasure through artificial and less satisfying means. Heard of training to run extremely long distances to simulate a real physical challenge? Or Cuckersperg slitting the throat of a sheep he wants to eat?

        Michael

        May 3, 2017 at 10:59 pm

    • He’s right.

      He’s right!

      He’s right hes right he’s right!

      MMA fighter, athletes, artists, criminals, ngo volunteers, do dangerous or risky work….and most are paid dirt. But if you can get by, its very good.

      The Philosopher

      April 30, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    • Hunting is very difficult. People who’ve never done it think well of course you kill the poor animal because you have the gun, but what you have to understand is that when you’re in the woods, you’re in the animals’ territory. They are much, much better than you are at negotiating the terrain and escaping danger. For this reason, it is actually extremely difficult both physically and mentally (it requires a tremendous amount of single-minded focus) to effectively harvest wildlife.

      Two in the Bush

      April 30, 2017 at 6:35 pm

      • Around here I could probably go out and kill a deer with a sharpened stick every night. It would just be illegal. They’re totally tame and all over the place.

        bobbybobbob

        April 30, 2017 at 10:22 pm

  11. And why is America prole? Simply because TOOS are morally superior people, and everyone else is not.

    JS

    April 30, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    • It takes money to be moral. Charlie Sheen’s character said something like that in Wall Street, one of the best social-class movies ever made.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 2:35 pm

      • “It takes money to be moral.”

        You weren’t acquainted with my Scottish Presbyterian grandmother, who was poor as a church mouse.

        Rosenmops

        April 30, 2017 at 2:52 pm

      • The opening scene in Horrible Bosses has Jason Bateman explaining how an ethos of “don’t take shit from anyone” is for poor people. It’s a lesson he learned from his grandmother, whom he respected despite her living and dying in poverty.

        Dain

        April 30, 2017 at 3:25 pm

      • Calvinists were the ones who gave us the notion that accruing wealth is a sign that someone is virtuous.

        Sid

        April 30, 2017 at 3:54 pm

  12. And why is a career in sales “prole”? Is it because the end of objective is money, and sales is usually selling things that people really don’t need.

    JS

    April 30, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    • Because a salesman is prostituting himself for the financial gain of his employer.

      B.T.D.T.

      April 30, 2017 at 2:58 pm

      • Yea but everyone who works does that. At least a salesman has more discretion to direct that money into his own pocket. But yea the overtness of it all is a turnoff to self-actualizers and those who aspire to it.

        Dain

        April 30, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    • Sales is a very broad definition. A lot of professions are actually sales even if people don’t associate with it.
      Financial Planners, Management Consultants. When it comes down to it, all sales people. They are going to tell their clients that they “need this”.

      Sales is not just pharmaceutical salespeople or car sales people.

      wt

      April 30, 2017 at 6:29 pm

      • Today, all Fortune 500 CEOs are sales people.

        E. Rekshun

        May 1, 2017 at 11:53 am

    • It all depends on when in your career the sales is done. In prole careers (like selling cars), you start out as a saleman. In upper-middle careers (like Law) you end up there.

      jimbo

      May 15, 2017 at 2:48 pm

      • That’s deep.

        And also, upper-class salesmen are called rainmakers.

      • Whether businesses are prole or not, it has a lot do with their clientele.

        Many upper middle class people are prolish anyway.

        JS

        May 15, 2017 at 8:33 pm

  13. One of Fussel’s more astute observations was the similarity of the underclass and the upper class: idle, parasitic on the rest of society, sexually promiscuous, and saturated with drugs or alcohol. At least it sounded astute: I don’t actually know anyone from either group.

    Mark Caplan

    April 30, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    • I do and they are all Democrats.

      B.T.D.T.

      April 30, 2017 at 2:56 pm

      • BTDT.
        Red states have higher rates of divorce so don’t go all judging them democrats. I know all about the inbred red state middle America.

        Wt

        April 30, 2017 at 3:28 pm

      • Wt — Red states have a higher divorce rate because red states have a higher marriage rate. If one only counts those who actually got married then blue states have a higher divorce rate. It’s just that so few people in blue states get married in the first place.

        destructure

        May 1, 2017 at 12:40 am

    • I’ve known people from both groups and I can vouch for this.

      GondwanaMan

      April 30, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    • It’s mostly an American phenomenon. The proleness of American society is destructive.

      Prole = the lack of intellectual curiosity

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    • I think that this was an over-statement by Fussell. There are degenerates in every class, but the marriage stats favor the upper class over proles (and everyone else). Though, I agree that there are superficial similarities that, in actuality, are completely different in quality .

      Dave

      May 1, 2017 at 9:22 am

  14. I would suggest:

    – Poor I might rename Underclass and divide into urban (largely NAMs) and rural (poor whites) because of cultural differences
    – Prole into Low Prole and High Prole like Fussel
    – Middle Class
    – Upper Middle Class
    – I like the name Bobo better than Class X and acknowledge there is a lot of overlap between Bobo and UMC
    – Upper and TOOS need some refinement between (1) UMC that wins the managerial capitalism game (CEO, consultancy partner, Big Law partner), vs. (2) multigenerational family business owner or real estate inheritor, vs. (3) multigenerational inherited wealth at various levels including TOOS (trust fund bobo/artist/philanthropist)

    B.T.D.T. mentions “local gentry” above and I would put them somewhere in upper-class category (2).

    R P

    April 30, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    • Your categories undermine the idea that middle class and upper middle class are often synonymous with “prole”.

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    • Local gentry could be called “lower upper class”.

      B.T.D.T.

      April 30, 2017 at 5:08 pm

  15. Funny deleted scene in The Godfather: Part II which touches on social class:

    Michael Corleone’s​ social class is a challenge to pin down. He’s a mafia boss so he’s filthy rich, but all of his legitimate business interests are just a cover for how the mafia is a drain on society. He might be rich now, but he grew up in a relatively modest, humble upbringing until his father really made it in the mafia. As such, he has characteristics of a nouveau riche type, which is again the mark of his being underclass.

    Gardner Shaw is a total TOOS WASP. He comes from a wealthy family and his studying the fine arts helps him self-actualize.

    Michael Corleone accepts the marriage, but you can see his contempt for TOOS WASPs. He thinks their bashfulness about their wealth is a ploy to keep ethic whites down (in this case, Italians), he doesn’t understand the utility of living off of shares and recommends that Shaw study business administration, and with his ego pricked, he will give his niece a large dowry to prove Italians are not to be looked down on, not understanding how gauche that will appear to a TOOS family.

    Once you’ve read Lion’s blog, you can’t help but see it in the movies!

    Sid

    April 30, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    • All Mafiosos and drug dealers fit the high prole profile perfectly. So I’ll go with that.

      B.T.D.T.

      April 30, 2017 at 5:35 pm

      • I largely agree with Lion’s list of social classes, but I would add that there is another “lower class” group which often overlaps with the poor but is distinct from it: the underclass, which Marx titled the “lumpenproletariat.”

        The underclass doesn’t contribute to economy or to society, but rather directly parasitizes off of it. The underclass consists of violent criminals, thieves, drug dealers, prostitutes, and so forth.

        It’s our moral duty to help out proles where it’s possible. The poor might even be deserving of our help and support when they don’t victimize productive citizens. But the underclass is utterly worthless, and to pity them is to jeopardize your own well-being.

        But it should be noted that the underclass has different gradients to itself. For example, a call girl who services corporate executives and Senators might be a moral reprobate, but she has more class than a crack whore. Mob bosses are similar: they might be parasitic drains on society, but they sometimes run large organizations in a manner not entirely different from a CEO running a corporation, and hence have more wealth and class than, say, a loan shark enforcer.

        Sid

        April 30, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    • That’s a brilliant scene!

      Yakov

      April 30, 2017 at 5:53 pm

      • Proles like you will always tell the world that money must be earned through the dint of hard work and labor.

        JS

        April 30, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      • What I love about it is how it captures Michael Corleone’s worldview in scene which should be light-hearted, even mundane. He’s fiercely protective of The Family and believes he’s the one protecting it from the rest of the world. But when his real family members make their own choices and relations with the rest of the world, he callously cuts them off or destroys them for betraying him.

        There’s also a great deal of bitterness, resentiment, and an inferiority complex towards legitimate society. He wants to think they’re no better than him, but he knows he could have been at the very top of the legitimate world if he hadn’t adopted his protective but possessive mindset towards his family.

        Sid

        April 30, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    • Francis Coppola was one of the rare guido types who saw his co-ethnics lacking in intellectual qualities. The first Godfather movie has many subtle qualities which are never found in real mafiosos.

      JS

      April 30, 2017 at 6:54 pm

      • It’s interesting to compare the novel with the two movies. The novel is more emphatic that Vito and Michael Corleone are both ice-blooded sociopaths. In contrast, Francis Ford Coppola made the films more like a Greek tragedy: Vito is largely idealized, almost to a disreputable extent. Michael is played straight as a monster, but he still retains enough sympathetic qualities to make him more of a tragic hero than a villain.

        A number of people prefer Goodfellas because it demonstrates what mobsters tend to be like: selfish, greedy, treacherous and violent scoundrels. I think Goodfellas is a better mob movie, but the two Godfather movies are better films, because it’s nearly impossible to top Greek tragedy when it comes to telling compelling narratives.

        Sid

        April 30, 2017 at 9:02 pm

  16. Here’s an interesting one: what about military officers?

    I think they are actually self-actualized. Military officers are military officers because they want to be, and because they think its important, and because they believe in it. Even though structurally they are middle class managers (below General/Admiral, of course), in terms of self satisfaction and ‘meaning,’ they are self-actualized.

    Financially, they are of course solidly in the middle class (I wouldn’t put them in upper middle class-which I read as being closer to doctor/successful lawyer/very successful manager).

    And politically, they are as far as possible from the whole self-actualization political activists.

    Note that the same job self-definition or sense of self-actualization applies to doctors, professors, park rangers, certain lower level activists (some social workers, perhaps some teachers, nurses, a few others). But they are widely scattered in terms of financial class.

    anon

    bingohead

    April 30, 2017 at 4:40 pm

    • Military officers are middle class, that’s it. They have no control over what they do, they just follow orders from their superiors.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 4:45 pm

      • And give orders to their inferiors.

        A strange post, I there ever was one. People spend most of their time at work and since you beleive that almost everybody is miserable. You live in a truly miserable world.

        Yakov

        April 30, 2017 at 5:43 pm

      • Military officers have real control of soldiers’ lives and tremendous responsibility. They plan and execute operations. Great job, if you are cut out for it. You are really out of you depth here, mate. Scratch the post.

        Yakov

        April 30, 2017 at 6:10 pm

      • The only chance of finding upper-class individuals in the military, with any consistency, is out of the military colleges. The lower tier is mostly a make-work program for proles, who may or may not have been hire-able in the private sector (a lot of NAMS) or who are good at being soldiers (the better portion of Whites). The lower tier officers are mostly those who don’t fuck up and who look presentable on paper, or who are passable Affirmative Action candidates, rather than those with any inherent leadership or other skill. Sure, they are well trained to do their jobs, but remember that it often takes such extreme training to make them passable at those jobs.

        The military is a great career institution for those who need extraordinary discipline to be functional or who are good at teaching others discipline, or for those who would benefit from an environment in which your shine is worth more than your results. It’s not so much for people who would do well in the private sector on talent alone. The former requirements are inherently more lower class.

        Dave

        May 1, 2017 at 9:16 am

    • Military is two types generally speaking. If they are enlisted or non-officers, they will be mostly losers. Prole, lower class people.

      For officers, they would be middle class I assume. Military is all about the benefits though.

      wt

      April 30, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    • Throughout our history and up until World War II being a military officer was considered upper class, and all men from aristocratic families served in some capacity. This was back when the upper crust had a warrior ethos ie “balls”. Like so many other things, rich liberal baby boomers completely ruined this tradition by molding their children into effeminate, artsy fartsy “self actualizers”. What they really are is cowards that are unwilling to defend their own power and position in a noble and honorable manner.

      B.T.D.T.

      April 30, 2017 at 6:29 pm

      • Military officers used to be aristocrats for a reason. The aristocracy thought it unwise for the military to be led by working class officers. Much safer for the upper class if all the military officers are from the upper class don’t you think? In fact, it used to be standard practice for officers to “purchase their commission”. In other words,one had to buy their rank.This doesn’t, however, mean anyone could buy any rank they wanted. One would be denied if the other upper class officers thought they weren’t sufficient class to hold that rank.

        destructure

        April 30, 2017 at 11:43 pm

      • In WWII working class people such as my father joined the airforce and were able to advance because they were intelligent. My dad became a pilot in the RCAF, so he was an officer. I remember he told me he had a “batman” to clean his shoes and look after his uniform. This was very strange for him because he came from a poor working class background. After the war he was able to go to university, something he would never have been able to afford if not for the war. He met my mom at university and they both became lawyers. Her parents were working class people too, but they had started a shoe store in Vancouver that did quite well.

        Rosenmops

        May 1, 2017 at 1:06 am

  17. In a few years automation and artificial intelligence will be doing most of the work, so maybe then we’ll all be able to self-actualize. Additionally, work won’t be linked to class at that point.

    Jimmy

    April 30, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    • That also seems like the logical juncture for a steep population reduction. That wouldn’t be fun.

      Dave

      May 1, 2017 at 8:59 am

  18. Please define “meaningless”

    Prole

    April 30, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    • app developers

      Wire transfer

      April 30, 2017 at 7:07 pm

  19. Whats a journalier?

    I would put it in the same category as priest.

    Except priests are more honest and sincere in their make beliefs, whereas journo nepotist hires are there to help control the masses with lies and shenanigans and don’t believe what they make up.

    e.g all mass media under the 6 major media wicked sisters.

    The Philosopher

    April 30, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    • To be fair priests help the community and do charity work. I apologise to all members of the ecumenical community for lumping mullahs, rabbis and deacons with the NYT/WAPO/Pravda/Globalist Messager.

      The Philosopher

      April 30, 2017 at 6:32 pm

  20. I think we’d all love to be a playboy photogrpaher or border guard.

    I would actually pay money to patrol the border with a carbine rifle and have a legal excuse to have serious interrogations and ‘do whatever it takes’ ton enforce the laws. My god. I’m misty eyed thinking about how fun that would be. I literally wouldn’t go asleep.

    The Philosopher

    April 30, 2017 at 6:38 pm

  21. See this link for a timeline on Trump’s slide into globalism and a refutation of the campaign promises that got him elected: http://www.xoxohth.com/thread.php?thread_id=3600599&mc=15&forum_id=2#33199897

    jcoors (@JMS2055)

    April 30, 2017 at 7:24 pm

    • I think that xoxohth is more worth reading than NeoGaf.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 30, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    • Trump is leading the country like a generic but inexperienced Republican, except that he’s actually keen on border enforcement and self-deportation. He also has been relatively active in negotiating job deals with manufacturers.

      He’s essentially leading the country Mitt Romney promised he would. The downside is that he’s less competent than Romney would’ve been, but the upside is that Romney wouldn’t have even delivered on self-deportation: Romney would’ve cucked mightily on immigration.

      Trump has my tentative support until he tries to go for a “grand bargain” on immigration, in which he grants amnesty with the Dems in exchange for even lower taxes or something.

      Of course, if Trump builds “civilian” nuclear reactor for Saudi Arabia, he could build a Wall with golden plating and I’ll still call Trump the biggest idiot of all time.

      Sid

      April 30, 2017 at 11:51 pm

  22. Aren’t there classes w/ in Class X?

    Ronald McDonald

    April 30, 2017 at 8:07 pm

  23. Guys like Speilberg are in the best situation.It’s like they are living in a perpetual summer vacation but have a ton of money.

    He can enjoy being creative and can pick and choose the jobs he wants and quit whenever he likes while still living a life of leisure.

    ttgy

    April 30, 2017 at 8:10 pm

  24. satisfy lower needs before moving on to higher needs. Clearly, one’s priority won’t be self-actualization if they’re starving. But that’s misleading. Modern society isn’t a video game where one must ‘win’ a level before moving on to the next. In practice, most people are meeting their lower needs with plenty of time left over for higher needs.

    People can self-actualize in a lot of ways including career. But I doubt most TOOS are finding fulfillment in their careers. I’m sure some do. But the upper class used to have a very bad reputation for being idle rich, leisure class, etc. So now they do something to avoid the appearance of idleness. It doesn’t mean they’re passionate for their career.

    I don’t assume that any career is going to be self-actualizing. Nor do I assume every person is capable of it to a high degree. Most people can probably find something that sparks an interest. But I think the ability to truly self-actualize belongs to a specific psychological profile. And most people just don’t have those traits.

    Go down the list of “Maslow’s self-actualizing characteristics”. Tell me which characteristics you think most people have. Because I don’t think most people have any of them.

    destructure

    April 30, 2017 at 10:48 pm

  25. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs implies that one must satisfy lower needs before moving on to higher needs. Clearly, one’s priority won’t be self-actualization if they’re starving. But that’s misleading. Modern society isn’t a video game where one must ‘win’ a level before moving on to the next. In practice, most people are meeting their lower needs with plenty of time left over for higher needs.

    People can self-actualize in a lot of ways including career. But I doubt most TOOS are finding fulfillment in their careers. I’m sure some do. But the upper class used to have a very bad reputation for being idle rich, leisure class, etc. So now they do something to avoid the appearance of idleness. It doesn’t mean they’re passionate for their career.

    I don’t assume that any career is going to be self-actualizing. Nor do I assume every person is capable of it to a high degree. Most people can probably find something that sparks an interest. But I think the ability to truly self-actualize belongs to a specific psychological profile. And most people just don’t have those traits.

    Go down the list of “Maslow’s self-actualizing characteristics”. Tell me which characteristics you think most people have. Because I don’t think most people have any of them.

    destructure

    April 30, 2017 at 10:49 pm

  26. My all-time favorite fictional passage on class is from Catch-22. Nately, the rich-kid pilot, remembers what his mother told him:

    “Always remember,” his mother had reminded him frequently, “that you are a Nately. You are not a Vanderbilt, whose fortune was made by a vulgar tugboat captain, or a Rockefeller, whose wealth was amassed through unscrupulous speculations in crude petroleum; or a Reynolds or Duke, whose income was derived from the sale to the unsuspecting public of products containing cancer-causing resins and tars; and you are certainly not an Astor, whose family, I believe, still lets rooms. You are a Nately, and the Natelys have never done anything for their money.”

    Njguy73

    April 30, 2017 at 11:58 pm

  27. Class X self-actualization is probably one of the cruelest and most counter-productive cultural novelties to be thrust upon lower-middle and middle class people.

    It ultimately makes them miserable when they can’t sustainably achieve it, and it prevents them from pursuing the money that is in their self-interest.

    The culture tries to de-emphasize money as a social value, but the truth is that for anyone but the rich money is the most important social value because it serves as the foundation for much non-money oriented social behavior in-practice.

    To wit, poor people are generally not the best behaved people, as a group, because poverty is the socioeconomic foundation for much of their behavior and their family outcomes. In contrast, wealthy individuals have a socioeconomic environment that is much more conducive to “being a good person”.

    So, it seems, Class x may be pursuing actualization to the detriment of their chance of one day sustaining it.

    The other side of the coin is that middle class and lower jobs allow no time to pursue a strategy that would one day lead to career based self-actualization. So, I would suppose, this is also a reason to keep this value away from the lower class and to instead emphasize money above most else for their career goals.

    Dave

    May 1, 2017 at 8:55 am

  28. Self-actualization careers are over-rated. If you are “self actualizing” by helping others, i.e. working with troubled youth in the Inner City or helping folks in the Third World, you are eventually going to stumble into the truth of HBD and then realize that most of what you have believed in was false and most of what you worked so hard to accomplish was a waste of time, hardly “self actualizing” in the long run.

    Self actualizing in the arts is the only safe road to real satisfaction.

    DataExplorer

    May 1, 2017 at 10:00 am

  29. Maybe the new blog can do a “prole / not prole” post. One could provide their particulars and readers can vote “prole” or not prole.”

    E. Rekshun

    May 1, 2017 at 11:17 am

    • That’s a good idea.

      destructure

      May 1, 2017 at 7:25 pm

  30. Lion, i’ve read that Harvard Law school – the second best after Yale – is no longer requiring the LSAT. They say it’s to reach a more diverse pool of talent. That’s true. But at the same times, it means they’ll take less motivated students – ones that took GMAT or GRE – but wouldn’t take the LSAT one, meaning that Law school is a second choice to them. So i think the true reason is that they don’t want the drop in student quality being visible. In fact, for the first time, the average LSAT dropped from 173 to 172, and the top quartile from 176 to 174 (they had 15% less application and perhaps a drop in the quality of the pool). I guess they saw the trend was here to stay and increase. So recruiting less LSAT test takers will allow them to keep the figure high. It would make sense for everyone else to follow except for Yale who could consolidate it”s position as the first choice for would be lawyers and perhaps even reducing slightly it’s size to 150 from here to 2020 (if all things stay equal).

    Bruno from Paris

    May 2, 2017 at 5:08 am

  31. What exactly is so “meaningful” about what a hedge fund manager does? He brings in investors who are usually already rich on the basis of some kind of mathematical con job like, ha-ha, “derivatives”, and then his product doesn’t even perform as advertised. What, precisely, is so “meaningful” about promising to make rich people richer and then not even delivering on that?

    As for CEOs – those cigar-chomping sociopaths of crony capitalism – what exactly do they do that is so, “ahem”, meaningful? It seems to me they get their eight or nine figure jobs based on whom they know, and come away with multi-million dollar payouts even when they run their companies into the ground. Even when they bring in a profit, they almost always do so by cheating their customers, extorting their vendors, and decimating the economic lives of their employees, and almost never by delivering the holy grail of “innovative products” – after which they and their cronies ransack that profit to buy themselves Lamborghinis and gold-plated shower heads, leaving the rest to be divided among their shareholders, who – of course – are also already way richer than any human being really needs to be. They are a cancer in the body of society. Their careers are “lucrative” – yes; “consequential” – yes, at least in the destructive sense; but “meaningful”? Meaningful to whom?

    Jimmy Kangaroo

    May 5, 2017 at 9:50 am


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