David Brooks coined the term “bourgeois bohemian” (BoBo) to refer to those children of the Sixties who exercise the bourgeois virtues of capitalism in their day jobs but affect the anti-capitalist (“bohemian”) attitudes and styles of the academic and cultural elite. Given this combination, the bourgeois bohemians of Wall Street were naturally among the largest contributors to the campaign of Barack Obama, the first presidential candidate with a completely post-Sixties outlook.
Ah, but now, according to a column in the New York Times by Andrew Ross Sorkin ( “Why Wall St. Is Deserting Obama” ), the bourgeois bohemians are shocked to discover that President Obama is actually going to wage war on the capitalist world that pays their bills. They are stunned to find that his adversary-culture attitudes are not just a matter of posturing, as theirs are.
Well, better late than never, I suppose. Marie Attoinette learned too late that Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s ethos of “the natural man,” which prompted her to play at being a shepherdess, was taken much more seriously by a young man with a prestigious law degree: Maximilien DeRobespierre.