Socially Mobile Grinders

David Brooks in "A Nation of Grinders" (RC,WW 543-547) asks readers, "[H]ow about Abraham Lincoln as the defining capitalist figure of our age?" (543). His answer, "That middle-aged Lincoln represents all the sometimes homely but invariably dreamy pushers who are what American striving is really all about" (543).
The typical American success story does not consist of the billion dollar deal signed behind the doors of mega-corporate board rooms, but comes from "the need to actually execute and finish your strategies" at companies where the culture "encourages the Lincolnian virtues of simplicity and humility." In other words, work hard and do a good job, no matter what your job title. Further, when practiced, this "social mobility reduces class conflict because each person can build his own fortune, rather than taking from the fortunes of others" (547).

What's your response to the notion that "each person's destiny is somehow related to the amount of talent and effort he or she pours into life" and this defines "the very essence of justice" (547)?


  1. I believe that a person's talent does not directly affect their destiny due to the fact that we do not know what our destiny really is. However, one's hard work and efforts put into life could amount to great things. I believe that hard work will always overcome great talent. Justice on the other hand is a word that is not easily defined and depends on our views of what a person really deserves.

  2. I think a person's destiny sometimes is not related to his/her talent.There are people who are lucky that even if they don't have a job, talents or they don't have a college degree their destiny puts them in fortune. For instance, a girl who only finished high school played in the casinos in Las Vegas and won a million dollar. Her destiny puts her into fortune. Actually, I don't really get what "the very essence of justice" means but I think "the very essence of justice" depends on every people's strategies in life and their destiny.

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  4. I truly believe talent does not interfere the individual's destiny, in fact, i believe it enhances the way to their destiny. Nevertheless, individuals do not need to have talent to achieve their accomplishment, hard work and dedication allows them to succeed.

  5. It is possible that many have completely missed the true meaning of this article. "the amount of talent" does not refer the the amount of ingrained natural affinity that commonly is credited by the masses, but the talent that is developed by consistent practice and trial. A man must work incredibly hard to reach any kind of achievement. Yes, your effort equals your destiny because everyone creates their own destiny. If you choose to lie victim to worldly circumstance then your destiny will become in wherever the winds of life blow you.


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