Aug
01
2011

Why there is no left-populist movement.

Peter Beinart doesn’t understand why the Tea Party gets to be the populist movement transforming American politics, instead of whatever latest cargo cult on the Left is these days.  In the spirit of bipartisanship – with ‘bipartisanship’ being defined as ‘kicking progressives in the teeth for the amusement of the crowd’ – I shall deign to explain things for him, hardline progressives, and everyone else with cognitive disabilities.

Yes, this is going to be one of those kinds of posts.

  • Moving along, the (UPDATED) graph to the left from the invaluable Heritage Foundation gives you an idea of the profoundly altered spending situation that we find ourselves in, these days.  As you can see, starting in 2008 (which is, not incidentally, after the Democrats took control of Congress in 2007) spending went through the roof without slowing down – and without a consideration to whether we had the money to pay for it.  This is pretty much false Keynesianism – Democratic politicians pretty much stop at the idea of ‘spending your way out of a recession’ – and it’s why people got exceptionally concerned about deficit levels; the deficit is exceptionally concerning.  Yes, tautology, but you get the point – and it’s one that can’t really be made by the Left, because they’re the ones driving the spending.
  • And what did that spending get us?  The other graph to the left tells the tale: nothing at all.  When the quote-unquote ‘stimulus’ was proposed back in 2009 – on the back of a TARP that was itself highly controversial – the government argued, very solemnly, that without that stimulus unemployment might hit 9% – but, with it, we’d cap out at 8%.  Well, the Tea Party didn’t buy that argument at all… and when unemployment took off like a rocket they were pretty much immediately vindicated.  When the jobless rate ranges two to three points above the government’s own official forecast, it’s hard to argue that the government actually knows what it’s doing.  Which is, by the way, why arguments that the problem was that the stimulus wasn’t large enough aren’t flying: aside from everything else, those arguments assume that the government wouldn’t have just wasted even more money and not made the jobs situation worse.

So, that’s pretty much why there’s no left-populist movement: the seed solution for it would be made up of groups that are largely instinctively hated by ordinary, decent Americans; the conditions that would (and did) spark a populist movement were largely created by the Left themselves, in the form of the Democratic party; and it’s fairly clear by now that the Left’s policy and philosophical positions are simply making things worse.

But aside from all of that, sure, there’s nothing stopping the Great Left Political Awakening…

Moe Lane (crosspost)

7 Comments

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  • Spiral says:

    That is one of the few benefits we have received from the Obama administration: a new experiment in Keynsian economics. Trillion dollar stimulus and unemployment under Obama at its very lowest is higher than unemployment under Bush at its very highest.

    Not the result the Keynsians hoped for.

    2012 can’t come soon enough.

  • qixlqatl says:

    “…with ‘bipartisanship’ being defined as ‘kicking progressives in the teeth for the amusement of the crowd’…”

    They still have teeth left, that’s more potential entertainment; Make with the kicking!!

  • Wombat-socho says:

    The New Left has been trying to gin up a populist rebellion against America as a constitutional, capitalist republic of the bourgeoisie since the 1960s, and I think it says something about how crappy their crony capitalist, pseudo-socialist alternative is that despite having control of most public school systems, they still can’t find enough ignorant rubes to buy into their revolution.

  • Well, with $2.4T walking-around money and at least 50% of the gen-pop receiving federal money for one reason or the other, it’s gonna be interesting to see if Obama can turn manufactured populism into a re-election.

  • [...] work it’ll take to hold the line against the left.The Axis of Fedorable has increased by one!Moe Lane took a few moments to explain why there is no such thing as the grassroots left.The story of how the SEIU and Media Matters [...]

  • Neil says:

    Joan has it right.
    If they can’t buy their re-election with that kind of money even the dumbest liberal voter should hang up his multi-vote crib sheet. I could be in the 50% but I’m 70+ and still paying taxes. Can’t help but wonder who is dumb.

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