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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

GOP Candidates to Struggling Americans: 'Let Them Eat Cake'

Hey, want to get really, really angry? Here you go:

Wall St. protesterI don’t have facts to back this up, but I happen to believe that these [Occupy Wall Street] demonstrations are planned and orchestrated to distract from the failed policies of the Obama administration. Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks, if you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself! [...] It is not someone’s fault if they succeeded, it is someone’s fault if they failed.


That's GOP rising star Herman Cain, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, making what in any sane world would be a "major campaign trail gaffe." We don't live in any sane world. Forget the insane conspiracy theory of a White House "orchestrating" protests that lay a lot of blame at the White House's door. Instead, concentrate on the "let them eat cake" part that blames unemployment on the unemployed, financial problems on the struggling, and implies that anyone who isn't rich is a failure.

ThinkProgress:

...Cain’s claim about the unemployed is especially heartless and uninformed. There are simply not enough jobs to go around, with 4.32 unemployed people for every job opening in the country. So even someone looking hard for a job will have a difficult time finding one. Moreover, Cain fails to understand the astronomical income inequality in the U.S. and the negative effect it has on economic growth.


↓ CONTINUED AFTER THE JUMP ↓


Blaming unemployment on the unemployed is a common trend among conservative politicians, but it’s a as wrong as it is offensive to the millions of Americans looking for a job.


And, as always, the arguments are inconsistent and contradictory; people are unemployed because of President Obama's "failed policies" and people are unemployed because they're lazy slobs. You want to settle on one of those arguments and get back to us, Herman? That'd be great. Until then, please shut the hell up.

Meanwhile, another frontrunner makes another ridiculous claim.

Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney on Tuesday compared the current anti-Wall Street protests to “class warfare.”

“I think it’s dangerous, this class warfare,” Romney said to an audience of about 50 people in response to a question about the protests over such issues as high unemployment, home foreclosures and the 2008 corporate bailouts.


The Wall Street protesters are marching under the banner of "we are the 99%." And Mittens has argued himself that the middle class is "the 80 to 90 percent of us in this country" (he's worth about $202 million, by the way). It's warfare on behalf of a class made up of almost everyone. Apparently, this is a terrible, terrible thing. What are we, a democracy or something?

What we're seeing here is who the Republican Party represents being made obvious. Have you been foreclosed on? Lost your job? Making a choice between medical care and food? Lost your savings? Sucks to be you. Real people with real problems that are far, far too common are demanding solutions and these candidates are dismissing them as whiners. Think of how hard the gazillionaires have it, they argue. They need more tax breaks, while your Medicare and Social Security gets raided to pay for them. Is it possible to be more out of touch?

And it pays to point out that both of these candidates come from the corporate world. No wonder they're worried. If this movement really starts to catch fire, it'll be a national anti-them movement. Goodbye White House dreams.

In that sort of political climate, "let them eat cake" isn't much of a campaign slogan.

-Wisco


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