Scotties Toy Box

February 14, 2020

OK Bloomberg: What panicked billionaires don’t get about a nation that made them so rich

Filed under: Bigotry, Economics, Greed, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 01:33

https://www.inquirer.com/opinion/commentary/michael-bloomberg-presidential-election-democrats-2020-20191110.html

As those exact words were leaving the mouth of the tuxedoed mayor, a couple hundred of “the people” whose freedom of political expression Bloomberg had just hailed were wet and shivering on the main roadway of the Brooklyn Bridge, tied up in plastic handcuffs that cut into their wrists as they awaited a bus and a trip to a dank city jail cell. New York’s police force — heavily militarized under Bloomberg, now able to shoot a plane from the sky — had just arrested 768 Occupy Wall Street marchers, allowing them onto the iconic bridge but then surrounding them in a kettle tactic. The Occupy protesters were speaking out against the kind of inequality that Bloomberg and his mid-sized cop army had vowed to protect and serve: economic inequality.

Fast-forward to 2019, and the 14th richest man in the world wants to bring that vision to the entire United States of America. But Mike Bloomberg’s surprising-but-not-shocking 11th-hour-and-58th-minute entry into the already overcrowded 2020 Democratic presidential primary field is more than just one billionaire’s vanity fair. No, Bloomberg is running as an avatar of an entire class of vainglorious, nakedly greedy and yet emotionally fragile billionaires convinced that America wants to return to the 2011 world that served their black-tie oligarchy so well, that patted itself on the back for saying nice things to immigrants or gay folks while crushing the 99 Percent.

Their problem is: We don’t.

 

But Bloomberg’s billionaire brigade — failing to understand either the resistance to Biden and to learn anything from the abysmal (and now corrupt) failure of one benevolent-liberal-billionaire in Tom Steyer — remains stubbornly convinced the problem is not their unpopular message, but the messengers. Like the ugly American tourist convinced a foreigner will understand him if only he speaks English louder, Bloomberg somehow thinks his luminescence will cause voters concerned about Biden’s health at age 76 to turn to him at age 77, and that a party base wary of Biden’s past politicking on behalf of big-bank billionaires will somehow fall in love with an actual billionaire. All this on top of a political strategy — entering late and ignoring the early-state primaries where voter impressions are formed — that hasn’t worked since 1968.

 

And yet these holes — so big that a militarized Wall Street-protecting cop could drive an armored personnel carrier right through them — aren’t even the biggest flaws in Bloomberg’s bid. How could these titans of industry and capitalism who profess to be geniuses — because they claim to know the pulse of the consumer who drives the American economy — understand so little about the most important consumer of all, the U.S. voter?

Their long con is finally getting exposed, and that in turn is exposing their moral emptiness. Consider Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who launched a tech monopoly with the same ruthless ambition that John D. Rockefeller showed in creating a 19th century oil empire. But now Gates wants people to love him for giving some of that wealth away for causes that range from the admirable (global health) to the misguided (charter schools) in the hope that targeted, billionaires-know-best philanthropy will divert the masses’ rage away from structural inequality. That so many voters now support presidential candidates who would tax just a sliver of Gates’ unfathomable wealth for the common good has revealed him as a sputtering liar.

 

Gates recently insisted that he’s willing to pay some higher taxes “[b]ut, you know, when you say I should pay $100 billion, O.K., then I’m starting to do a little math about what I have left over.” Except Elizabeth Warren’s tax proposals would only cost Bill Gates an estimated $6 billion, which would leave him with $100 billion to play around with. Gates is just the latest of a half-dozen or so billionaires to go public with their panicked predictions that the left-wing populism of a Warren or a Sanders will destroy America as we know it. But only other billionaires and their paid consultants seem to believe them. They can’t accept the fact that — to borrow the Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez line that became the title of Ryan Grim’s recent, excellent book — they’ve got money but we’ve got people.

There is a lot more at the link above.  I strongly suggest reading it.   Hugs

4 Comments »

  1. Thank you for the sharing, Scottie.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ — February 14, 2020 @ 22:44


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