The key to public opinion, especially when it's about abstractions divorced from practical day-to-day life, is that it follows opinion leaders. And all opinion leaders in America are against the establishment. In fact, no opinion leaders in America will admit to being part of the establishment! Virtually every president in my memory, from Nixon on with the possible exception of George H. W. Bush, not only ran against Washington to get elected but continued to campaign against Washington from the White House. Look at Obama -- he's not the establishment! He's not even the establishment of the Democratic Party; that's the message of keeping his grass-roots insurgent organization, OFA, running. Over on the Republican side, surely no one -- not Rush Limbaugh, not Glenn Beck or anyone at Fox News, and certainly not the Republican Party's most recent nominee for vice president -- would admit to being part of the dreaded establishment.
Or, in Julian Sanchez's words:
Apparently being part of "the establishment" is like being a hipster: even the paradigm cases have to deny it.
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