28 Oct '15     home | previous

Class and Megyn Kelly at Fox

What is "political class" supposed to mean? Last night on Fox News, Megyn Kelly, who considers herself a journalist, used that phrase. Journalists are supposed to be interested in and discrete about word use.

Wikipedia describes "political class" as,

an epithet by conservatives, such as the editors of National Review. The theme is that the political elite is undemocratic and has an agenda of its own – especially the aggrandizement of its own power – that is hostile to the larger national interest, and which ought to be opposed by grassroots of populist movements.

The phrase is a reach for meaning beyond "politician," a word commonly used negatively and by Tea Party types wanting to win political office but to posture as above being above politics and to separate themselves from those already there – no matter that politics it an inherent to society and democracy.

"Working class" refers to referring to an economic relationship: being an employee rather than an employer. "Ruling class" is another phrase used often by people of the Left. Some conservatives have disliked use of the word "class" – as in class conflict. And it appears to some of us a stretch to categorize people as a class who are voted into office by their constituents and removed by their constituents – except as name calling. Name calling, of course, can communicate dislike, while good communication describes with specifics what someone does or where someone has erred or done well.

After the first Republican debate in early August, Donald Trump called Megyn Kelly a bimbo. That was his lousy piece of communications. Megyn Kelly is no bimbo. She has a quick mind and some sophistication. We have journalists with center-left biases and we have journalists like Kelly with what appears to be a center-right bias. We also have a least a few journalists who manage to describe without letting their biases distort their message.

Kelly describes herself as an independent and says she has voted for both Democrats and Republicans. At Syracuse University she wanted to attend a well-regarded communications program but was rejected, so she studied law instead and became a lawyer. Then her interest in journalism prevailed, and at Fox she appears to fit in.

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