August 15, 2019

Before even getting into the clip, let's quickly review Ben Shapiro's biography, courtesy of Wikipedia:

Shapiro grew up in a Jewish family in Los Angeles, California.[6]Shapiro developed a talent for violin at a young age,[7] having performed at the Israel Bonds Banquet in 1996 at twelve years of age.[8] Shapiro's parents both worked in Hollywood. His mother worked as an executive of a TV company and his father as a composer.[6] Shapiro's cousin is writer and former child actress Mara Wilson.[1] Skipping two grades (third and ninth), Shapiro went from Walter Reed Middle School to Yeshiva University High School of Los Angeles where he graduated in 2000 at age 16.[9][4] He graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2004, at age 20, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and then cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2007.[10] He then practiced law at Goodwin Procter. As of March 2012 he ran an independent legal consultancy firm, Benjamin Shapiro Legal Consulting, in Los Angeles.[4]

This is, without condemnation, a life born of privilege. Child of wealthy Hollywood elites, private schools, the best education and exposure to the good things in life. He's never known a day of hunger, need or struggle. Again, that's not a condemnation. That's a blessing, a mitzvah, one to which many people aspire.

But Ben Shapiro lives a clearly isolated life, comfortably nestled in his conservative bubble, where empathy and challenging points of view don't pierce it. He chooses to lack empathy, and for that, he deserves every bit of condemnation.

On his eponymous named radio show, Trust Fund Ben declares that if you have to work two or three jobs to get by, then you're working the wrong jobs: "If you had to work more than one job to have a roof over your head or food on the table, you probably shouldn't have taken the job that's not paying you enough. That'd be a you problem."

Oh. Okay. So all those elementary school teachers barely getting by teaching the next generation, they should just quit their jobs and look for more lucrative work? Who does Ben think will do those minimum wage jobs? Not everyone has parents who can put them into top notch schools; is that also a "them" problem?

After taking a ton of criticism on social media for his Randian Objectivism isolated from the reality for people born with less privilege than him, Shapiro tried to clarify his statement, failing miserably: "The point I am making, of course, is that you cannot dictate that a job pay you what you wish it paid you. That is obvious, and why it is foolishness for politicians to claim that the economy can be structured to force your desired level of pay from a job you chose to take."

As yet, Shapiro has not explained exactly why paying people a livable wage would be problematic other than the strawman of people "dictating" wages.

But that's exactly what makes Ben Shapiro a leading conservative thinker: he's got no clue how life works outside his bubble, he creates strawmen no one actually argues for, and just a little energy would totally obliterate his argument, but he's too lazy to do it.

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