Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The angry rich

Remember what I've said over and over in this space? That Republicans (and Blue Dogs) don't give a shit about you unless you're rich? Krugman:

The spectacle of high-income Americans, the world’s luckiest people, wallowing in self-pity and self-righteousness would be funny, except for one thing: they may well get their way. Never mind the $700 billion price tag for extending the high-end tax breaks: virtually all Republicans and some Democrats are rushing to the aid of the oppressed affluent.

You see, the rich are different from you and me: they have more influence. It’s partly a matter of campaign contributions, but it’s also a matter of social pressure, since politicians spend a lot of time hanging out with the wealthy. So when the rich face the prospect of paying an extra 3 or 4 percent of their income in taxes, politicians feel their pain — feel it much more acutely, it’s clear, than they feel the pain of families who are losing their jobs, their houses, and their hopes.

And when the tax fight is over, one way or another, you can be sure that the people currently defending the incomes of the elite will go back to demanding cuts in Social Security and aid to the unemployed. America must make hard choices, they’ll say; we all have to be willing to make sacrifices.

But when they say “we,” they mean “you.” Sacrifice is for the little people.
This column brings to mind a post by Athenae that's linked to at Susie's place:

In the second place, in the second paragraph, really. You're really going to tell starving children to go blow because you're mad about your taxes. That's a thing you're going to do. The starving children, natch, having all kinds of influence in Congress, given how everybody's falling all over themselves to help THEM. Those are the people who can do exactly dick about your tax sitch, so I'm sure your brave moral stand will SO TOTALLY get noticed by our decision makers. Shit, stop giving money to politicians if you don't like how they behave, but Toys for Tots did nothing to you to deserve your contempt, and you're doing plenty to earn mine.
Of course, the starving children have no influence on Congress because the only thing congresspeople care about is getting re-elected, that is to say, their own asses. Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa, for example, would rather shut down the federal government than alienate what he sees as a bumper crop of new potential supporters in the tea baggers.

“We must not blink,” he said, noting that money cannot be spent without the House voting to pass it. “If the House says no, it’s no.”

Their new tea party backers won’t tolerate anything less than a full repeal of the health care law, he said.

“They will leave us if we go wobbly,” he said. “I am worried about that, but that’s why I think it’s got to be a blood oath.”
No word from King about what might happen if the entire nation goes "wobbly" because the House forces a shutdown of the government. But apparently Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa is not "worried about that." Apparently Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa is more "worried about" getting Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa re-elected.

Country first, y'all.

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