The New Yorker, in its coverage of the Khodorkovsky saga, uses without irony testimony from a Stalinist show trial against poet Josef Brodksy:
Judge: And what is your profession?
Brodsky: Poet. Poet and translator.
Judge: And who told you that you were a poet? Who assigned you that rank?
Brodsky: No one. (Non-confrontationally.) Who assigned me to the human race?
Judge: And did you study for this?
Brodsky: For what?
Judge: To become a poet? Did you try to attend a school where they train [poets] . . . where they teach . . .
Brodsky: I don’t think it comes from education.
Judge: From what, then?
Brodsky: I think it’s . . . (at a loss) . . . from God.
Again, I say it is without irony that the New Yorker uses this excerpt.
Because isn’t it this line that the liberal oligarchy uses when conservatives question global warming, Paul Krugman, Obamacare or gay marriage?
“It’s the law, and they should just shut up,” they demand. “What degree do you have that qualifies you to talk about (education, healthcare, taxes, economics, civil rights, etc.)? they taunt triumphantly. “Who made you an expert on our ‘settled science?’” they sneer.