From the New Republic:
Timothy Noah/January 18, 2021
Washington’s new national security establishment is coming straight outta Beverly Hills.
“Probably the battle of Waterloo was won on the playing-fields of Eton, but the opening battles of all subsequent wars have been lost there.”
—George Orwell, The Lion and the Unicorn, 1941
Future generations may well wonder how it came to pass that the federal government’s homeland security policy fell into the hands of a select group of people raised within a mere 23 neighborhoods inside the Los Angeles Basin, situated south of the Santa Monica Mountains, west of La Cienega Boulevard, north of the Santa Monica Freeway, and east of the Pacific Ocean. The area is known locally as the Westside. I grew up there myself from the age of 12—but I have no ready answer for the curious.
President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee for homeland security secretary is Alejandro Mayorkas, who was one year behind me at Beverly Hills High School. Biden has also named Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall to be White House homeland security adviser. Sherwood-Randall started out one year behind me at Beverly High but skipped a year and graduated with me in 1976. Michèle Flournoy, whom Biden came very close to nominating for defense secretary, and who will probably end up performing some high-ranking national security function in his administration, was three years behind me at Beverly High. …
More recently, though, Beverly High has been drifting into a role vaguely comparable to that of the ivy-laden New England prep schools that educated the moneyed WASPs who guided foreign policy during World War II and the Cold War. A story that ended unhappily, one recalls with a wince, in the deep muddy of Vietnam. …
What the Westsiders have in common is a grounding in the culture of affluent liberalism—the kind where you are passionately liberal on social issues but only mildly so on economic ones. .
Another common characteristic the Westsiders tend to share is Jewishness. Sherwood-Randall, Miller, and Kaus are all Jewish, as am I. Mayorkas is, too, though his more widely recognized identity is Cuban-American. Breitbart was adopted into a Jewish family.
Surely, it’s also relevant that Latino immigrants pushing African-Americans out of Los Angeles has reduced the cost of servants in Beverly Hills while lowering the crime rate.