Working Class Peg and the Not Waspy Enough Candidate
Who else but Peggy from the block, who so wants to be an Uptown Girl, would find Howard Dean lacking because he doesn’t have Larchmont lockjaw and call his wife ‘Lovey’?
There is a disjunction between Dean’s ethnic background and his personal style. His background is eastern WASP–Park Avenue, the Hamptons, boarding school, Yale. But he doesn’t seem like a WASP. I know it’s not nice to deal in stereotypes, but there seems very little Thurston Howell III, or George Bush the elder for that matter, in Mr. Dean. He seems unpolished, doesn’t hide his aggression, is proudly pugnacious. He doesn’t look or act the part of the WASP. This may be partly because of his generation. Boomer WASPs didn’t really learn How It’s Done the way their forebears did. (Boomers of every ethnicity are less ethnic than their forebears.) George W. Bush is a little like this too–less polished, more awkward, than one might expect.
The difference being that Dean studied for twelve years to become a doctor while George W Bush lived like a drunken fratboy for twenty years as he ran company after company into the ground, all of them financed by friends of his dad. Apparently Dean didn’t get the memo that hard work and study is for the little folks (see: riffraff, common) and that real American WASP royalty is supposed to glide through life on a smile, a name, a trust fund, and a soupÃ§on of Thai hookers.
Why doesn’t Howard Dean act his class?