Let’s internalize. Let’s think differently. Let’s be outside the box. Let’s talk about how the real problem with politics today is that not enough people really love the rich.Jesus H. Christ on clearance.
The problem in America isn’t that a simultaneously unknown and insufficient numbers of liberals are unwilling to internalize some nonsense about rich people that an Atlantic columnist made up on the spot. The problem, as far as I see it, is that too many privileged people can’t get it through their damned heads that most poor people aren’t lazy, drunk, or just living large on the welfare, but were born into far shittier situations that most of the wealthy people in America. I’m willing to agree that most rich and poor people work really hard for what they have. Just the rich have it a helluva lot better and their concept of “hard” is a little different. I’d also point out that the growth in income inequality and the stagnation of income mobility after the policies of the last 20-30 years would suggest that rich people, if they want their feelings catered to even more, should probably get a dog.
This goes back to what we talk about a lot here, about most commentary approaching politics and public policy from a standpoint of total safety. Andrew Sullivan isn’t going to miss a meal if the faux-centrist mushiness he advocates leads to morons voting Republican for no reason, so really, what the hell difference does any of this make to him? He survived the Bush years just fine. People continue to lick all over him every time he says something that is not patently insane. It’s all a big ironic joke anyway, so let’s talk about some stuff that can’t be disproved in any way, like how liberals haven’t internalized the right stuff.
Democrats aren’t going to be losing seats in a few weeks because liberals haven’t internalized being nice to the rich. They’re going to be losing seats because THIS ECONOMY BLOWS and there’s no real sign of it not blowing because of anything Democrats are willing to say they’ve done. They’re going to be losing seats because there are no jobs. They’re going to be losing seats because they didn’t fix enough about how busted health care is. They’re going to be losing seats because college still costs too much, elementary schools have holes in the roof, and the universal response to hard times in any town in this country is shutting down the library and firing the cops and the guys who fix the sewers.
They’re going to be losing seats not because they didn’t think or feel the right things but because they didn’t DO the right things. Because everybody’s tired, and everybody’s scared, and everybody’s tired of being scared. Tired of worrying about savings. Tired of worrying about debt. Tired of worrying about saving to pay off debt. There never seems to be enough money and every time the phone rings it’s $600, and the message from Washington is some incoherent combo of “it’s already okay, so your desperation is all in your head” and “don’t blame me, man, I was never even HERE.”
Yet pricks like Sullivan think it’s about what narratives we’ve internalized. Um. We can internalize all the narratives we want about how rich folks have worked hard, too. None of it matters worth a shit when PEOPLE ARE OUT OF WORK. I mean, is it too much to ask that just one election we have be about real things? About what has actually happened and if anything Obama and the Democrats have done has helped? Can we talk about those questions maybe for a second?
Or does this always have to be about how we’re just feeling the wrong things, out here in the world where rich people live in terror of my broke ass disapproving of them? Look. I will gladly internalize the fuck out of the narrative that all rich people have obtained their wealth through unending devotion to virtue if it means we can shut the hell up about this nonsense and get back to how to stop banks from stealing people’s houses and put some people to work patching potholes.
Jesus, just call me when the work actually starts, because this pre-meeting chitchat about how we’re all feeling today while the world burns down outside is becoming goddamn embarrassing.