2 Quoted in Graham, The Civil Rights Era, 149.
3 Sean Farhang, “The Political Development of Job Discrimination Litigation,” Studies in American Political Development 23, no. 1 (January 2009): 23–60; R. Shep Melnick, “Adversarial Legalism and the Civil Rights State” (paper presented at the Virtues and Vices of Legalism: A Conference to Honor the Work of Robert A. Kagan, University of California, Berkeley, Center for the Study of Law and Society, September 19, 2008).
4 Graham, The Civil Rights Era, 467.
5 Nathan Glazer, Affirmative Discrimination: Ethnic Inequality and Public Policy (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1987), xiv.
6 In fairness to Caldwell, it should be noted that because enforcement is so widely dispersed, “we do not even have a good estimate of how many federal employees work on civil rights.” R. Shep Melnick, The Transformation of Title IX: Regulating Gender Equality in Education (Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, 2018), 33.
7 As Caldwell discusses, the triumph of the “victim perspective” was due to a number of things: the stubborn poverty of many black neighborhoods, the clientele capture of the civil rights agencies, the mismatch between those agencies’ growing powers and the scope of action provided by the “intentional” view, and the occupational sociology of the late twentieth-century judiciary.
8 Juan Williams, “Discrimination Case: Administration Fights Unhappily with Sears,” Washington Post, July 15, 1985; Juan Williams, “A Question of Fairness,” Atlantic (February 1987).
9 For the sharpest critique of the legal aspects of the book, see Robert Verbruggen, “Did Civil-Rights Law Ruin America?,” National Review (February 5, 2020).
10 It is remarkable, given that Caldwell is a sympathetic expositor of the new populism, that The Age of Entitlement is suffused with libertarian concerns, such as “rights,” “the Constitution,” and an almost aesthetic revulsion toward the national debt. On this point, see Darel E. Paul, “Clashing Rights,” First Things (March 2020): 61–63.
11 Christopher Howard, The Welfare State Nobody Knows: Debunking Myths about U.S. Social Policy (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007), 209.
12 For a quantitative breakdown, see Zach Goldberg, “America’s White Saviors,” Tablet (June 5, 2019).
13 Ezra Klein’s new book, Why We’re Polarized, suggests that Caldwell’s synthetic approach to the racial resentment/economic anxiety question is correct, but it gets the causality backward. Klein cites social scientists who believe that racial and cultural anxieties lead to economic pessimism, not the other way around. The grim assessments of both books, however, are remarkably similar, at least on questions of race and the American political future. See Klein, Why We’re Polarized (New York: Avid Reader Press, 2020), 120.
14 John Lukacs, Outgrowing Democracy: A History of the United States in the Twentieth Century (New York: Doubleday, 1984), 263–64.
15 Christopher Caldwell, “The Endless 1960s,” a lecture delivered at the Program on Constitutional Government, Harvard University, October 24, 2014.