The Fall of the Meritocracy

Toby Young:

The left loathes the concept of IQ — especially the claim that it helps to determine socio-economic status, rather than vice versa — because of a near-religious attachment to the idea that man is a piece of clay that can be moulded into any shape by society

In 1958, my father, Michael Young, published a short book called The Rise of the Meritocracy, 1870–2023: An Essay on Education and Equality. It purported to be a paper written by a sociologist in 2034 about the transformation of Britain from a feudal society in which people’s social position and level of income were largely determined by the socio-economic status of their parents into a modern Shangri-La in which status is based solely on merit. He invented the word meritocracy to describe this principle for allocating wealth and prestige and the new society it gave rise to.