Yes, Krauthammer would have to plead guilty to what Palin would deride as “high-falutin'” educational credentials: He studied at Oxford and earned his M.D. at Harvard Medical School. But in what sense does this paraplegic, Canadian-raised son of struggling Eastern European immigrants qualify as a representative of some perceived establishment that excludes a former governor, vice presidential nominee, certified TV star and No. 1 best-selling author?
Only in terms intellectuality, not wealth or influence or celebrity status, could a Krauthammer qualify as more “elitist” than a Palin…
No one can question the fact that the nation’s most prestigious educational institutions opened up to “unconventional” but able applicants in the ’60s and ’70s (prominently including Barack Obama) and reserved far fewer spaces to legacy students and prep school products. This means that populist rage focused on Ivy League degrees now amounts to resentment of educational achievement, or even intelligence, rather than inherited privilege.
In that context, Palin’s well-advertised battle against various elites has more to do with her carefully constructed and distinctive “Going Rogue” persona than with her position as a self-anointed outsider, her religious faith or educational background.