One of the disadvantages of having a Sunday radio program is that when something of significance occurs, you really don’t get to address it on air until just about every thing said about the subject has reached it expiration date. Sometimes though, if you listen carefully enough something gets missed in the conversation; such is the case with Steve Jobs.
Thomas Friedman had a wonderful piece in the Sunday New York Times yesterday speaking to the leadership displayed by Mr. Jobs. Rush Limbaugh stole the first part of this blog when he addressed the subject of American Exceptionalism embodied in Steve Jobs’ life and life’s work. Others have addressed his focus, his genius, and his supreme confidence. What no one yet has mentioned was his elitism.
As with most words that have been pirated and prostituted by political correctness, elitism has not escaped the clutches of the etymologically challenged Left or Right. It has been perverted to pejorative status by the Right and deemed Angelic by the Left. In reality, it is a most American word meaning best, crème de la crème, first class and it is the very thing that is the beginning of the end of the American Dream. It is the status all of us aspire to initially achieve and then to actively maintain. Sadly, because of the Tongue Troopers amongst us, we have been fooled into accepting this status as a negative. In an insane attempt to make all people equal, we have lowered the very bar that once was the goalpost of the world and have now created the State of Mediocrity. We have forgotten that while all men are created equal they do not become equal; that certain people have more value to a society than others, that certain ideas and ideals are better than others. This fact does not, however, make one man better than the other. Therein lies the rub.
The implied essence of true Elitism is leadership; great ideas and the vision to carry them out don’t come from the meek at heart. The ideas are great because they are different and they do challenge the status quo. They are, in a sense, creatively destructive and by their very nature and character they are frightening to people because they scream the one thing people are afraid of – change.
Elitists create and promulgate ideas that require courage, character and what in Yiddish is referred to as an eisener kup, a head of steel. This is a strong sense of belief in what you are doing and an ability to convey such a belief to others; to do this in a way that results not only in acceptance of the idea but also, by virtue of the passion necessary to convey and gain acquiescence to the idea, the concomitant ability to instill in others the desire to excel at what they do and to always improve upon it.
These are the things of elitism, these are the things of American Exceptionalism, these are the things that when merged created a man named Steve Jobs… American Elitist! iMourn his passing.