Interesting take on the part of the guy who wrote "What's the matter with Kansas?" I think that he is too stuck in the belief in the class system to accrately evaluate the problem.
The US is probably the least class based country that I have ever been to. In England, your father's station in life, your accent and your education are determinative of your future. Germany has the same problem, although, perhaps to a lesser extent. Don't even get me started on any of the counrties in Asia that I have been to.
Here, on the other hand, we are less respectful of anyone because of who their father is, or how much money that they have. Americans are more willing to believe that no one is better than they are because of any artificial benefits conferred by lineage, wealth or education. We don't hate people for being rich here. In fact, Almost every American wants to be rich.
Even among the poor, who are defined to comprise the bottom 20%, there are few who will remain permanently in that class. Most people will move up or down the socio-economic levels based more on factors they control - i.e. hard work, education, drug or alcohol abuse, criminal prosecutions, than on their birth.
Because I am old, I have learned a few truisims. Most famous ancestors have crappy descendants. The third generation of a family that has gotten rich is more likely to blow the entire fourtune that their grandparents created. Throw enough money at the problem and the problem will get rich.