The founders recognized that aristocracy is the legacy of genius. They also knew that though genius always initiates the aristocratic lineage, it does not characterize its legacy. Over time, the rapacious and incompetent aristocrats become greedy squatters holding to ransom the opportunities rightfully reserved for the talented. Therein lies the eternal inequity among men.
The greatest institution of the US after the republic itself is free public secondary education. The current trend to commercialize and manage the opportunities for higher education toward a single viewpoint sickens me. Higher liberal education (and indeed some technical education also) has been taken over by aristocratic interlopers, that is, those who wish to associate themselves with the thinkers of the past but do not have the talent to carry forward the enlightened work of their predecessors. They have held at ransom from the talented, the burdened, and the free-thinking, the prime method of furthering classical liberal thinking. They have usurped the academic discussions and curricula to hold power at the expense of liberty. It is a travesty in a liberal society.
Who can justify a BA degree at a price of a quarter million dollars? Currently only the incompetent aristocrats. Who will guide our nation when the aristocrats discover they have no clothes?
The obnoxious contemporary aristocracies are in all of our institutions: politics, religion, education, business and finance. The evidence for this assertion is always close at hand. Our progress has been nil for over thirty years when one considers the state of our culture, society, education and finance. Our opportunities have been replaced by false guarantees and rights. No man has a right to success. He only has a right to pursue it.