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Are Jews the New WASPs?

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If Elena Kagan is successfully confirmed to the Supreme Court, it will create a court packed with Catholic and Jewish justices, but bereft of Protestants. (Kagan is Jewish.) So far, few people seem to care. Indeed, Kagan's identity as a Jew is getting next to no discussion in the media--it's simply not much of an issue. Mondoweiss's Philip Weiss surveys what he says is the rising tide of American Jews in high-profile positions.

The Kagan appointment means that we have entered a period in which Jews are equal members, if not actually predominant members, of the American Establishment. Obama's two closest political advisers are Jewish, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod, and are said to be his foreign-policy braintrust. The economy is supervised to a large degree by Jewish appointees, Larry Summers and Fed Reserve Board chair Ben Bernanke (Time's man of the year last year, a selection overseen by Rick Stengel, the Time magazine editor, who is also Jewish).

Recently a Jewish friend in the media said, "We're the new WASPs," referring to the patrician class that used to represent the elite in American society.

Weiss beams, "This is a glorious Jewish and American moment. Never before in history have Jews been so included, so trusted, as we are in the U.S. People know this and accept it."

Is he right? If so, does this really make Jews "the new WASPs"? Your Atlantic Wire correspondent, Jewish himself, may or not be wearing blue-colored boat shoes at this very moment.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.