Democrats Are Accomplices in Corporate Capitalism's Robbery of The People

Duane Townsend

Bill Moyers via The Nation - September 2017

"From Clinton to Obama, Democratic administrations took their cues from Wall Street financiers and the multinational corporations that were gutting US jobs and wages. Dems too often dismissed these dislocations and stagnant wages as unfortunate but temporary. For better wages, workers simply needed more education. But the displaced didn’t need an economist to figure out what was happening to them. They saw it in their pay stubs and swollen credit-card debt. A lot of them voted for the crackpot last fall." 

The party of Trump is being torn to pieces by its own crackpot, bigoted leader, and Democrats are eagerly feeding on the carcass. But we can already see that the Democratic Party is astride its own contradictions.

One problem for Democrats is they can’t tell the truth about their own past. Despite bleeding-heart rhetoric, the party has been directly complicit with corporate capitalism in generating the retrograde policies that effectively dismantled the country’s widely shared prosperity. Income inequality, we might say, was partly manufactured in Washington, DC, and both parties did their part.

Of course, economists would explain that faceless economic forces flattened labor wages and generated the awesome gap between fabulous wealth and the everyday people struggling to get by. But these events were not an act of nature. Political actors and political interests were at the wheel and steering at every turn, starting with Ronald Reagan’s reactionary tax cuts and anti-government slogans in the early 1980s. The Democratic Party got walloped by the Gipper, and was so traumatized that it began to imitate the Reagan mantra: “Big government is the problem, not the solution” became Bill Clinton’s famous “The era of big government is over.” Jimmy Carter struck a similar pose with his mania for deregulation.

From Clinton to Obama, Democratic administrations took their cues from Wall Street financiers and the multinational corporations that were gutting US jobs and wages. Dems too often dismissed these dislocations and stagnant wages as unfortunate but temporary. For better wages, workers simply needed more education. But the displaced didn’t need an economist to figure out what was happening to them. They saw it in their pay stubs and swollen credit-card debt. A lot of them voted for the crackpot last fall. ...

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