"WASPs" vs. Jews, notes 1

[Reposted from elsewhere.]

Nathaniel Weyl's calculations show Jews rather dramatically underrepresented in the Social Register as of 1984.
Performance Coefficient - National Name Group
763 Puritan + Old Dutch
328 English Clerical
210 Welsh
165 English
144 Scottish
[100 national average]
95 Dutch
93 Irish
71 German
71 French
64 Swedish
49 Scandinavian
45 Danish
14 Jews
6 Spanish
[Adapted from The Geography of American Achievement, p. 35]

Weyl: 'These coefficients reveal the perhaps not surprising fact that the social elite represents the ethnic and nationals stocks with "old money" and suggests that the Social Register remains a rampart against the winds of change.'

Especially considering Jews were dramatically overrepresented in most indexes of achievement by this time, it's clear no heightened affinity exists between Jews and the old upper class -- just the opposite. One of Baltzell's primary purposes in writing The Protestant Establishment is to flog "WASPs" for their "anti-Semitism".

While La Guardia's sense of social inferiority was primarily a product of his Italian-American origins, it is important to note that he was partly Jewish. And as far as Jews are concerned, once again we find the 1880's a dividing line. While sporadic and idiosyncratic anti-Semitism had been characteristic of the gentile gentleman's code since Colonial times, it was only in the 1880's, when the flood tides of immigration began to rise, that upper-class anti-Semitism gradually became rigid and institutionalized.

[p. 32]

[Bernard Baruch] was never accepted either on The Street or uptown in the sociey to which his affluence and ability as well as his handsomeness and engaging manner might have led him. Though he has always been listed in the Social Register and many of his and his wife's friends were of the upper-class world, the Baruchs were faced with such humiliations as their daughter's being refused admission into a dancing class which her mother had once attended.

[p. 33]

Except for the captains of industry, whose money-centered minds continued to welcome and encourage immigration because they believed it kept wages down and retarded unionization, most old-stock Americans were frankly appalled at the growing evils of industrialization, immigration and urbanization. As we have seen, the closing decades of the nineteenth century were marked by labor unrest and violence; many men, like Henry Adams, developed a violent nativism and anti-Semitism; others, following the lead of Jane Addams, discovered the slums and went to work to alleviate the evils of prostitution, disease, crime, political bossism and grinding poverty; both Midwestern Populism and the Eastern, patrician-led Progressive movement were part of the general protest and were, in turn, infused with varying degrees of nativism; [. . .]

In so many ways, nativism was part of a more generalized anti-urban and anti-capitalist mood. Unfortunately, anti-Semitism is often allied with an antipathy toward the city and the money-power. Thus the first mass manifestations of anti-Semitism in America came out of the Midwest among the Populist leaders and their followers. In the campaign of 1896, for example, William Jennings Bryan was acused of anti-Semitism and had to explain to the Jewish Democrats of Chicago that in denouncing the policies of Wall Street and the Rothschilds [. . .]

Nativism was also a part of a status revolution at the elite level of leadershiop on the Eastern Seaboard. "The newly rich, the grandiosely or corruptly rich, the masters of the great corporations," wrote Richard Ofstadter, "were bypassing the men of the Mugwump type--the old gentry, the merchants of long standing, the small manufacturers, the established professional men, the civic leaders of an earlier era. In scores of cities and hundreds of towns, particularly in the East but also in the nation at large, the old-family, college-educated class that had deep ancestral roots in local communities and oftend owned family businesses, that had traditions of political leadership, belonged to the patriotic societies and the best clubs, staffed the government boards of philanthropic and cultural institutions, and led the movements for civic betterment, were being overshadowed and edged saside in making basic political and economic decisions. . . . They were less important and they knew it."

Many members of this class, of old-stock prestige and waning power, eventually allied themselves with the Progressive movement. Many also, like Henry Adams, withdrew almost entirely from the world of power. The "decent people," as Edith Wharton once put it, increasingly "fell back on sport and culture." And this sport and culture was now to be reinforced by a series of fashionable and patrician protective associations which, in turn, systematically and subtly institutionalized the exclusion of Jews.

The turning point came in the 1880's, when a number of symbolic events forecast the nature of the American upper class in the twentieth century. Thus, when President Eliot of Harvard built his summer cottage at Northeast Harbor, Maine, in 1881, the exclusive summer resort trend was well under way; the founding of The Country Club at Brookline, Massachusetts, in 1882, marked the beginning of the country-club trend; the founding of the Sons of the Revolution, in 1883, symbolized the birht of the genealogical fad and the patrician scramble for old-stock roots; Endicott Peabody's founding of Groton School, in 1884, in order to rear young gentement in the tradition of British public schools (and incidentally to protect them from teh increasing heterogeneity of the public school system) was an important symbol of both upper-class exclusiveness and patrician Anglophilia; and finally, the Social Register, a convenient index of this new associational aristocracy, was first issued toward the end of this transitional decade in 1887 (the publisher also handled much of the literature of the American Protective Associationl which was active in the nativist movement at that time).

The Right Reverend Phillips Brooks--the favorite clergyman among Philadelphia's Victorian gentry, who was called to Boston's Triniy Church in 1869 [. . .] was one of the most sensistive barometers of the brahmin mind. Thus, although he himself had graduated from the Boston Latin School along with other patricians and plebeian gentlemen of his generation, he first suggested the idea of Groton to young Peabody in the eighties and joined the Sons of the Revolution in 1891, because, as he said at the time, "it is well to go in for the assertion that our dear land at least used to be American."

[E. Digby Baltzell. The Protestant Establishment. pp. 111-113]


RE: notion that the roster of the Council on Foreign Relations is filled with "just the mix of old WASP names and Ashkenazic Jewish ones that MM identifies as composing the present American socioeconomic elite."

Ethnic/geographic origins of the CFR directors:

Co-Chairman of the Board Carla A. Hills - born in Los Angeles, perhaps "WASP" in a broad sense, but not obviously of the old Eastern establishment
Co-Chairman of the Board Robert E. Rubin - Jew
Vice Chairman Alexandre Louise Mohan - Jew (unless it's a Francophone subcon)
President Richard N. Haass - Jew
Board of Directors
Peter Ackerman - Jew
Fouad Ajami - Lebanese
Madeleine Albright - Jew
Charlene Barshefsky - Jew
Henry Bienen - Jew
Alan Blinder - Jew
Stephen W. Bosworth - born in Michigan
Tom Brokaw - born in South Dakota; Irish mother
Sylvia Mathews Burwell - "Born and raised in Hinton, West Virginia, into a Greek-American family"
Frank J. Caufield - California venture capitalist; could conceivably be of Irish Catholic descent
Kenneth Duberstein - Jew
Martin Feldstein - Jew
Richard N. Foster - unable to confirm birthplace; possibly New England
Stephen Friedman - Jew
Ann M. Fudge - Negress
Helene D. Gayle - Negress
Maurice R. Greenberg - Jew
J. Tomilson Hill - ?
Richard Holbrooke - Jew
Karen Elliott House - "A native of Matador, Texas, [pop.: 740]"; Irish-surnamed mother; married to a Jew
Alberto Ibarg├╝en - Cuban / Puerto Rican
Shirley Ann Jackson - Negress
Henry Kravis - Jew
Jami Miscik - Czech?
Michael H. Moskow - Jew
Joseph Nye - New Jersey
Ronald L. Olson - Swedish-surnamed Midwesterner
James W. Owens - "a native of Elizabeth City, North Carolina"
Colin Powell - Negro
David Rubenstein - Jew
George E. Rupp - "born in Summit, New Jersey, the son of [German] immigrant parents"
Anne-Marie Slaughter - "raised in Charlottesville, Virginia by her American father and Belgian mother"
Joan E. Spero - Jew
Vin Weber - Minnesota; Catholic
Christine Todd Whitman - New York
Fareed Zakaria - Indian

I see no more than four directors -- Whitman, Nye, Foster, and Tomilson -- who could potentially resemble the Northeastern "WASP" stereotype.

Meanwhile, I count 17 Jews, 4 blacks, 1 Hindu Muslim, 1 Hispanic, 1 Arab, 1 Greek, 1 Czech, 10 other whites (two of those being offspring of immigrants).

17/40 = 42.5% of CFR board members are Jewish, versus about 2.2% of the U.S. population.

16/40 = 40% of board members appear to be of European descent, meaning whites are substantially underrepresented.


RE: intermarriage

"The Jewish-Catholic Connection":
Special To The Jewish Week
A few months ago, Pope Benedict XVI, decked out in trademark white robes and white skullcap, became the first pontiff to enter an American synagogue.

The visit to Manhattan’s Park East Synagogue — where the pontiff apparently opened his speech with a “shalom” — was an indicator of how, despite some stumbling blocks, Catholic-Jewish relations have never been better.

The same might be said for Catholic-Jewish relationships.
Since my husband, Joe, is a lapsed Catholic, my radar is always up for Jewish-Catholic marriages. However, in two years of writing this column, I have not had to look far for examples of such couplings: whether the topic is gentiles at the seder table or women who convert to Judaism after many years of marriage, virtually every interfaith family I encounter is Jewish-Catholic. And the same is true in my social circle and extended family, despite the occasional Jewish-Protestant or Jewish-Hindu pairing.

I’m not the only one who’s noticed this Catholic-Jewish attraction. Suzette Cohen, a longtime facilitator in Atlanta of the Mothers Circle, a program for non-Jewish women raising Jewish children, estimates that at least 60 percent of her participants are Catholic or formerly Catholic even though she’s “in Georgia, a Baptist part of the world.”

In his recent book, “The New American Judaism: The Way Forward on Challenging Issues From Intermarriage to Jewish Identity” (Palgrave Macmillan), Rabbi Arthur Blecher notes that in the approximately 1,000 Washington, D.C.-area interfaith couples he has interviewed in the past two decades, slightly more than half of the gentile spouses were Catholic. “It made no difference whether a man or woman was the Jewish partner,” he writes, adding later that Jews and Catholics share a “social affinity.”

The U.S. Religion Landscape Survey released this spring by the Washington, D.C.-based Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life also confirmed the trend, finding that 12 percent of married Jews have Catholic spouses, while only 7 percent have Protestant spouses (the rest are married to Jews, atheists or people of other faiths). That’s in spite of the fact that American Protestants outnumber American Catholics nearly 2 to 1.

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