Michael van der Galien

Affirmative Action A La Française

Posted on January 17 2010 8:00 pm
Michael van der Galien was born in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden in 1984. For as long as he can remember, he has been obsessed with the United States. When he was 17 years old, he started blogging - of course about America. His articles have been published at Big Hollywood, Pajamas Media, Hot Air (the GreenRoom) and Right Across The Atlantic. He's also an editor for the Dutch conservative blog, De Dagelijkse Standaard.
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by Theodore Dalrymple

Stalinist-style social engineering is not quite dead. Indeed, it flourishes. In France, a controversy has broken out about the admission policies to the grandes ecoles, the elite tertiary educational establishments such as the Polytechnique and the Ecole Nationale d’Administration that, since Napoleon’s time, have provided France with much of its business, government and cultural elite.

Admission to one of the grandes ecoles more or less guarantees the student a prosperous subsequent career. Entry is by competitive examination; and it has long been a proud boast of France that such entry is by ability rather than by social connection or political prominence, for talented young people from poor homes are given a state subsidy that allows them to attend. The openness of the grandes ecoles to talent from wherever in society it comes is taken as one of the great achievements of the French Revolution.

Read the whole thing at FrontPage Magazine.

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