What a snob! On today's Morning Joe, Howard Dean, a product of fancy prep schools and Yale, suggested that Scott Walker was unfit to be president because his lack of a college degree rendered him "unknowledgeable."
Dean's disdain for the un-diplomaed came during a discussion of Walker having declined, during his recent trip to the UK, to state whether he believes in evolution. Joe Scarborough was incredulous at Dean's diss, pointing out that people such as Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg never finished college. To which list could be added super-successful and knowledgeable people from Rush Limbaugh to Steve Jobs, among many others.
Is there any way to understand Dean's condescension as anything other than sheer snobbery?
Question: does Dean consider Brian Williams "unknowledgeable," too? Williams attended three different colleges but left without a degree after completing a total of 18 credits.
HOWARD DEAN: This [his declining to answer question on evolution] is a particular problem for Scott Walker which has not been an issue yet but it will. Scott Walker, were he to become president, would be the first president in many generations that did not have a college degree. He's never finished. The issue here is not just an issue of dancing around the question of evolution for political reasons, the issue is how well educated is this guy? And that's a problem.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: Are you serious?
DEAN: I am absolutely serious.
DONNY DEUTSCH: I like that. I like that line: "are you serious?" He didn't finish his senior year so he didn't get all that stuff.
SCARBOROUGH: Are you serious? You're saying he might not be qualified because he didn't finish college?
DEAN: I think there are going to be a lot of people who worry about that.
SCARBOROUGH: Do you worry about people that don't finish college?
DEAN: I worry about people being President of the United States not knowing much about the world and not knowing much about science. I worry about that.
SCARBOROUGH: Oh, God. Let's name the people that didn't finish college that have changed this world.
DEAN: Harry Truman, who was a great president, there's no question about it.
SCARBOROUGH: Did Bill Gates finish college?
DEAN: I think Bill Gates is a little on a different --nobody is accusing Scott Walker of having the intellect of Bill Gates.
SCARBOROUGH: Well, nobody is accusing Scott Walker of being dumb because he didn't graduate from college except you.
DEAN: I didn't say dumb, I said unknowledgeable.