In his forthcoming book, Coming Apart, The State of White America, 1960–2010, Charles Murray writes about the perils of the upper-class elite setting policy that affects regular Americans, with whom these elites have little to nothing in common. Because their bubble is so thick, the elites are vulnerable to making huge policy mistakes, despite their best intentions.
To help you determine how thick your bubble is, Murray has produced a quiz whose score will place you into one of the following categories:
- A lifelong resident of a working-class neighborhood with average television and moviegoing habits. Range: 48–99. Typical: 77.
- A first-generation middle-class person with working-class parents and average television and moviegoing habits. Range: 42–100. Typical: 66.
- A ﬁrst-generation upper-middle-class person with middle-class parents. Range: 11–80. Typical: 33.
- A second- generation (or more) upper-middle-class person who has made a point of getting out a lot. Range: 0–43. Typical: 9.
- A second- generation (or more) upper-middle-class person with the tele- vision and moviegoing habits of the upper middle class. Range: 0–20.Typical: 2.
Three of the Young Guns crew have thus far taken the quiz, and I was shocked to discover that with my score of 26, I have the biggest bubble. When I protested to the group that Californians need a separate quiz, Meghan Clyne responded, "No, I think that's the point--to live in California (at least, northern California) is to have separated oneself from the mainstream of the rest of the country." Touché.
Take the quiz here (questions begin on page 103), and report back with your score.